Business Briefs: June 2019

The Brewing Tree celebrates its first birthday June 6-8. Submitted photo.

Brewing Tree Celebrates First Year

The first weekend in June marks the first year of Mark and Gina Thompson’s Brewing Tree Beer Company. The Thompsons opened the craft brewery early last summer, but they’re veterans in the food and beverage business. Mark has been a brewer for more than two decades, and was a founder of Starr Hill Brewery in Crozet and a mentor to many up-and-coming brewers. In fact, he said in an interview last year, he picked the name as a reference to a “Coaching Tree,” where all involved learn from those more experienced and then become teachers themselves. Gina is a respected veteran of the food and wine business in Tidewater, where she met Mark. 

In addition to brewing beer and opening and running the brewery, Gina and Mark have become renovators, farmers, mowers and landscapers, adding an extensive expanse of beautiful riverfront to the immediate brewery grounds. This is in keeping with their desire to make it a family-friendly operation, where children and adults can have fun outside. There’s also a food truck, “Scratch Kitchen,” with a menu that elevates brewery food to a new level.

Brewing Tree Meadows is now open. Submitted photo.

The weekend of June 7-9 will include festivities well-suited to the occasion. “Brewing Tree Meadows” will be opened, Glass House wine, Pippin Hill cider, and Seven Arrows beer will be added to Thompson’s carefully curated beer selections, and additional food trucks will arrive. There will be activities for kids as well as live music, including Dan Falkenstein on Friday, Sisters & Brothers and Kendall Street Company on Saturday; and Crystal Armentrout and Alex Arbaugh on Sunday. Find the complete schedule and details on the Brewing Tree Beer Company Facebook page.

The House of Flowers Opens in Crozet Shopping Center

After years of supplying floral arrangements and planning festive events from Washington to Richmond, Xochilt Diaz has opened Xochicalli (The House of Flowers) at Crozet Shopping Center. Her business is in the former Claudius Consignment Shop. Diaz said she’s able to provide a range of services from a simple floral arrangement to the complete planning of festive traditional religious events such as weddings, baptisms, communions and quinceañera celebrations, the traditional observance of a Catholic girl’s 15th birthday. 

Floral designer and event planner Xochilt Diaz has opened Xochicalli House of Flowers in the Crozet Shopping Center. Photo: Theresa Curry.

She also has plenty of experience in more secular events, such as birthdays, bachelorette parties and baby showers, she said. Diaz, whose first name means “flower” in a Mexican dialect, said she can coordinate everything from the catering to the scheduling. Although she specializes in serving the Spanish-speaking community, she welcomes everyone to drop by her new shop and learn more about her services. Find out more about The House of Flowers and see photos of events on the Xochicalli Facebook page.

Second Saturdays Continues Expansion

There’s something different about the traditional “Second Saturdays” art openings in Crozet, which expanded in May to include live demonstrations and other events. More artists, craftsmen, businesses and musicians have signed on for June 8, adding flute music, food, wine tasting, raffles, and literary trivia to the mix. The increased activity is in partnership with the Downtown Crozet Initiative, designed to offer a number of family-centered activities so there’s plenty for everyone to do in the area. Find a complete schedule and map at

Some Downtown Highlights

At the Crozet Artisan Depot, master woodturner Frederick Williamson will display and sell his amazing bowls. You can meet and talk to him from 1 to 3 p.m. The event will be immediately followed by live music by flautist Elizabeth Brightbill and cellist Andrew Gabbert. 

Wooden bowls by Master Woodturner Frederick Williamson are featured at the Artisans Depot June 8. Submitted photo.

Across the tracks at Over the Moon Bookstore in Piedmont Place, Carol Martin’s stunning water color florals continue to brighten the walls, and a “literary trivia” contest and raffle begins at 1 p.m. and offers a chance at an Over the Moon gift certificate. The competition ends at 4 p.m. Meanwhile, those who have worked up a hunger and thirst testing their literary knowledge can take advantage of the free wine and local food tasting by the Blue Ridge Bottle Shop, the bookstore’s neighbor at Piedmont Place. The tasting will also be from 1 to 4 p.m.

A little ways out of town you’ll find Sarah Tremaine demonstrating fabric printing and dyeing with local plants at Sunset Farm Studio from 1 to 4 p.m.; Giselle Gautreau painting with hot wax and resin at the Barn Swallow from 2 to 4 p.m.; and veteran potter Roslyn Neusch turning pots on the wheel at Two Owls Pottery from 1 to 4 p.m. Directions are included on the website above.

Pap & Zan’s to Open at Former Mountainside

A family-centered, southern-style restaurant will be opening at the former Mountainside location at Clover Lawn. Proprietor Andrew Haggard said he picked the name from the nicknames given to his parents by their grandchildren. Haggard has always loved Crozet and, although he believes there are fine restaurants here, “there just aren’t enough of them,” he said. “The area is just blossoming.” Haggard, who said this is his first restaurant venture, hopes to serve a variety of southern lunchroom classics, but there will also be plenty of options for those wanting healthy food. As of now, plans are to open in mid-August.

Business Bits:

Birchwood Place, a commercial project planned for downtown on a parcel adjoining The Crozet Market and the U.Va. Community Credit Union, is seeking potential tenants who need 5,500 to 10,000 square feet. Those interested may call Bevin Cetta Boisvert at 434-996-8633.

Crozet’s vacant retail locations are filling up, but Crozet Partners are still looking for a tenant for half of the former SWAY: the other half is now Mountain Lumber’s offices.

Space from the former Face Value Salon in Old Trail will be used to expand the adjoining ACAC fitness facility, with construction well underway.

Stuart Rifkin, realtor for the long-awaited Mechum’s Trestle, says there’s still “nothing juicy to report.”

Those wanting to support the Blue Ridge Children’s Museum may do so and have a great meal at the same time by attending a pop-up dinner on June 28 at Blue Oregano of Waynesboro. Reserve a place at or call the restaurant.

Dr. Julia Katsev will be joining Crozet Eye Care in July. Katsev completed her residency at the Baltimore Veterans Medical Center and the Wilmer Eye Institute at Johns Hopkins. 


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