Parallel 38: New restaurant brings global flavor to Stonefield

Posted on January 24, 2014 by


Running parallel to Stonefield’s Pasture sits one of Charlottesville’s newest restaurants – Parallel 38. Mixing an eclectic wine and food menu with a warm, urban atmosphere, this new eatery is certain to draw more Cville foodies to the Shops at Stonefield.

The sleek, minimalist façade of Parallel 38 may fool the eyes of those looking for the in-your-face restaurant curb appeal, but it is the Mediterranean-inspired small plates paired with local and international libations that is bringing people through the doors.

p38 bar © Cville Niche

“Our goal is to deliver quality food, craft cocktails, beers and wines in a warm, urban atmosphere,” said Justin Ross, co-owner of Parallel 38. “The space is filled with unique local touches, like the antique factory carts or wine barrels from The Old Storage Warehouse in Nelson County. Or the incredible Soapstone bar from Albemarle Countertop Company, or the chalk mural from local artist Sam Welty.”

justin @ Cville Niche

Justin Ross, co-owner of Parallel 38

The décor includes the antique carts transformed into small tables with short black leather bench seats in the bar area, as well as the huge mural of the 38th parallel that was drawn by Welty and encompasses the back wall above the open kitchen.

bar space

Ross said the inspiration for the name of the restaurant, which he opened with business partner Steven Pritchard, came from all of the notorious food and wine regions along the 38th parallel.

“The 38th parallel runs through some of the most iconic and incredible food and wine regions in the world, such as the Mediterranean, Spain, Greece, Napa Valley and Charlottesville,” he said. “I’ve been fortunate enough to work with many types of cuisines in my career and P38 allowed me to marry all of my favorites.”

full beet salad

tuna tartar, © Cville Niche

The menu for Parallel 38 includes popular dishes served up as small plates.

Some of Ross’s favorites are:

  • Gnocchi
  • Gambas Al Maratho (a mixture of shrimp, chorizo, fennel and feta)
  • Kreatos Adena (veal sweetbreads)
  • Octopus
  • Grilled Kalamari

steak, © Cville Niche

“We wanted to meld all the amazing flavors of the Mediterranean together, but do it in a way that incorporated the amazing local purveyors that we have here in central Virginia,” Ross said. The menu will continue to expand and rotate with each season, he added.

“Chef Alfredo Malinis is always working on something new and delicious!”

menu, © Cville Niche

The library of wine spans the globe, while highlighting the 38th parallel, with selections ranging from Carter’s Mountain to Israel.

“We offer all of our 100 still wines by the glass and all of our ‘Trophy Wines’ are available by the ounce,” Ross said. “Our goal is to introduce people to unique varietals and regions that they haven’t had or even seen before.”

His top five wine recommendations include:

  • Moschofilero, a white wine from the Mantinia region of Greece
  • a Antao`Vaz/Arinto Blend from Portugal
  • Meritage, red wine from Israel
  • Kavaklidere, a red wine from Portugal
  • Frappato from Valle del Acate, Sicily

wine selection, © Cville Niche

The city’s newest eatery opened on the first day of the new year, adjacent to the Regal Stonefield Stadium 14 movie theater and Travinia Italian Kitchen.

It may be surprising that Ross decided to open his restaurant at the relatively new Shops at Stonefield on the outskirts of the city limits rather than Downtown in the thriving restaurant scene, but Ross said that while he loves and lives in the Downtown area, Stonefield seemed like the ideal fit.

“Stonefield offered me something the (Downtown) Mall couldn’t – scale,” Ross said. “I needed scale to execute my vision and new construction offered me the opportunity to run with my creativity.”

“We hope to show people that the Charlottesville food scene is not just the Downtown Mall. There are great restaurants and neighborhoods developing all over this city.”

cocktails, © Cville Niche

Words by Darren Sweeny
Photography by Katerina Diplas