Middleburg is history, picturesque countryside and lots of charm. Middleburg, Virginia was established in 1787 by American Revolutionary War Lieutenant Colonel and Virginia statesman John Leven Powell, who purchased the property from Joseph Chinn, a cousin of George Washington. Powell changed the name from “Chinn’s Crossroads” to Middleburg because the town was the halfway point between Alexandria and Winchester along the popular Ashby Gap trading route, along what is today Rte. 50.
The town has a rich history, including serving as the site of two skirmishes in 1863 as part of the Gettysburg Campaign during the Civil War. After the turn of the century, the town became a popular destination for foxhunting and steeplechasing, earning it a reputation as the “Nation’s Horse and Hunt Capital”.
Middleburg boasts more than 20 wineries within 30 minutes of this historic hamlet, making it one of the top 10 wine destinations in the world.
Sitting on 340 acres in the heart of Middleburg is the impeccable Salamander Resort. Once a month the Salamander Resort hosts a guest chef in their Cooking Studio allowing the chef to interact with dining guests while preparing meals. This month Chef Tony Chittum from Iron Gate was featured. For lunch Chef Chittum provided a cooking demonstration preparing a sweet pea soup with greek yogurt and an oven roasted rockfish wrapped in grape leaves with early summer squash. Chef Todd Gray from Equinox served as his sous chef. Both dishes were delicate, fresh and delicious.
We returned to the Cooking Studio for a tasting menu for dinner. For this multi-course meal Chef Chittum teams with Chef Gray and Salamander Resort’s Chef de Cuisine Chris Edwards and Executive Pastry Chef Jason Reaves. All chefs collaborate to create a progressive meal centered around a common theme. Each course is expertly paired with some of the most interesting and unique wines. Despite the ten other guests and the hustle of the kitchen we enjoyed an intimate meal with pairings and conversation seemingly just for us.
Middleburg and the Salamander Resort are the perfect destination to celebrate and indulge in the finer and sweeter things in life.