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Lexington’s Heliotrope brewpub pulls together a menu mash-up

Published: Aug. 23, 2021 at 5:24 PM EDT
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LEXINGTON, Va. (WDBJ) - They’re still being careful. The masks are still out. But at the Heliotrope brewpub in Lexington, they’re looking to more normal days.

“We’re all kind of just working together in different kitchens and pulling it together here tonight,” said Patrick Riley, who was the founding chef at the restaurant.

Meaning they had to start preparing early to serve dinner on a night Heliotrope is normally closed.

“You know, we’ve done a lot of collaborations on the beer side, especially with our friends in Roanoke,” said Heliotrope co-owner Erik Jones, “and so we kind of had the idea of to sort of do that on the restaurant side as well.”

“The restaurant community here in Lexington, and down in Roanoke is real tight-knit,” Riley said. “Everyone’s friendly, collegial. And also the farmers and the producers, we can’t leave them out.”

It’s something that has helped them survive the downturn caused by the pandemic.

“I think we talked a lot about delivery options,” Jones remembered, “and how take-out would look and pricing would look and ordering would look.”

An idea Riley thought could be extended to a special, collaborative menu for one night only, with money going to local charities.

“We’re going to hang out, and do some fun stuff for a good cause,” Riley said, “and hopefully have a really great evening here in Lexington.”

“I think it’s always like good to be around other creative people too,” Jones said, “because it gets you to up your game and maybe you get some ideas, you get some inspiration, plus it’s just fun to hang out, you know?”

Showing how these chefs survived COVID.

“Hopefully tonight will be a nice respite from that,” said Riley, “and we’ll have a good time cooking together and showing people a good night.”

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