A New Design

May. 18th 2013

If you have been following along with us on Facebook, you know that we have posed some questions to help us make some of the burning decisions we have to make. One of those questions was around whether to us a coffee mug or tea cup at breakfast. Several of you stated that you would like to have mugs available. Even more suggested that we consider having a special mug designed just for Belle Grove Plantation.

We want to announce that we now have a new design for our coffee mugs at Belle Grove Plantation!

Our mugs are creations of Hannah Janney

Hannah 2

An artist and potter from Colonial Beach, Virginia

She and I worked together to come up with a design that would reflex the history at Belle Grove Plantation. We spent an afternoon together as I watched her mold different designs. She and I discussed old pottery and glazes and what might have been at the plantation. I described piece of broken pottery I had found. And after several tries, she was able to create what I feel reflexes the history of the plantation.

Hannah 3

Hannah 10

Hannah 11Hannah 12

Hannah 13

Hannah 15

Hannah 16

Hannah 17

Hannah 20

Hannah 21



We now have six mugs completed with several more coming. Each mug is hand-made by Hannah and while still the same basic design; each has a character of its own, just as the families did at Belle Grove Plantation. Just like one of our recent files at Belle Grove, this mug is glazed in a salt glaze with a beautiful blue and nature color. The handles are also special with a small curl at the base.

We will have these mugs available at the plantation when you come and will offer them on our website once we launch!

To see more items we have purchase

Please visit our Facebook Fan Page!

Posted by Michelle Darnell | in Darnell History | 20 Comments »

New Places to Eat

May. 9th 2013

As I was staying at the plantation several weeks ago, I had the chance to visit two local restaurants in the area. If you visit the area, these are some wonderful places to stop and eat.

My first stop was with Brett at Fujiya House, a Japanese Steakhouse. It is located in Fredericksburg in the Central Park area. Just so you know, Central Park is a shopping and dining mecca.  With hundreds of places to shop and eat, you never run out of choices.

Central Park


If you haven’t figured it out yet, I love Asian Food. So I love trying new places to see how good they are. This Japanese Steakhouse was really good.



The inside is open and inviting with what I have come to expect from a Hibachi style restaurant. Grills and a Sushi Bar with tons of fun watching the chef cook our food.


No sushi for me this night. Brett and I both had a steak entree with Brett adding scallops and I added shrimp. Our meal started with a clear chicken soup and was followed by a salad with a ginger house dressing.



Brett ate his scallops so fast, I couldn’t get a picture of it!


With a colorfully decorated room, this was a fun place to enjoy a dinner out.

You can visit Fujiya House’s website at http://fujiyahouse.com/ to see more of their wonderful restaurant.


Our next stop was in Colonial Beach, Virginia. Colonial Beach is located just 20 miles from Belle Grove and it’s beach is on the Potomac River. There are several restaurants there and some wonderful artists that have shops in the downtown area.


We decided to visit Seaside Thai and French Restaurant. This is a “fusion style” restaurant that combines Thai and French Cuisine. We have eaten here before and loved it so it wasn’t a hard choice to go back.


The restaurant is in an older Dutch style home, but is decorated wonderfully.


We started out with a Thai appetizer called “Satay”. This appetizer is skewered and grilled chicken served with a special Seaside House Peanut Sauce and Cucumber relish. This relish is to die for! I could have eaten it and been just as happy!


Brett and I both ordered the same entree, Bistro Filet Mignon. This wonderful steak was cooked to perfection and was served with Shallot and Red Wine Sauce with a side of Roasted Herb Potatoes and Vegetables.

But we didn’t stop there! We decided to order dessert!


Brett had a bowl of Coconut Ice Cream…


I had a Fried Banana drizzle with sweet honey and sprinkled with sesame seeds and served with Vanilla Ice Cream!

It was all very wonderful! Brett and I agree this is a great place for dinner and will be returning soon!

You can visit Seaside’s website at http://www.seaside-va.com/ to see more of their wonderful food!

To see more places we have visited

Facebook Link

Please visit our Facebook Fan Page!

Posted by Michelle Darnell | in Food and Recipes | 20 Comments »