September, 2010 | Mankin Mansion Blog


B&Bs for Vets

September 30th, 2010

When the West Virginia B&B Association began the “Bed and Breakfasts for Vets” program in 2009, we were happy to join over 400 other Bed and Breakfasts in this great cause.

As Kathleen Panek, owner of the Gillum House in Shinnston, WV, and the leader of the initiative noted:

“We just wanted to say thank you to the courageous men and women from our armed forces. These are some trying times for anyone serving or who has served and a good night’s rest is our way to say, thank you.”

The initiative has received press coverage and we were delighted when the Mansion was asked to be featured.

Each participating B&B will provide at least one complimentary room on the eve of Veteran’s Day for active and retired military.

For more information-

See you soon,
Martin & Paula Ramirez



May your Cup Runneth Over

September 27th, 2010

We just love a great wine here at the Mansion, and when we found out we could try twenty five Virginia Vineyard’s wines, we were ecstatic and thought we would share our treasure of find with our friends and future patrons.

On Saturday October 23, the eighth annual Powhatan Festival of the Grape will kick off and there are several different ways to enjoy the festivities. Avid runners can start the day bright and early at 9am for a 5k run- just make sure to register online before the race. Eleven in the morning the wine starts flowing until six in the evening.

Twenty-five Virginia Wineries bring their best of the best for you to sample and purchase. A selection of food from our region of Virginia will be also be available. Are you an art fan as well? Then you’ll enjoy that over one hundred different arts and craft vendors present their months of hard work for purchase.

Live entertainment keeps the party going through the night, entertaining you as you browse. Casper, a local popular favorite, knows how to get the crowd on the dance floor and they are expecting to play everything from the good old oldies to current music. With their stellar choreographed dance moves and amazing musicians we dare you to try to keep your feet still. Steve Bassett will
serenade you with “Sweet Virginia Breeze” while sipping wine and enjoying the fall weather.

You can purchase tickets online before attending to guarantee your spot is reserved. Tickets are twenty dollars, which includes a commemorative wine glass for tasting and wine tastings at all twenty five wineries. We look forward in sharing in on the festivities with you.

See You Soon.
Paula & Martin Ramirez

Paula and Martin Ramirez are the proprietors of Historic Mankin Mansion, a wedding resort and bed and breakfast just minutes from Downtown Richmond. They enjoy new restaurant finds, Virginia wines and discovering fun events and activities throughout the area for their guests.


Journey Down the James this Fall

September 22nd, 2010

We find that many of our Historic Mankin Mansion guests are drawn to us for the wonderful history of our property. If in the mood for a jaunt back in town, then we suggest you make the time to take a historical expedition down the James on the Richmond Canal Cruises with an exciting forty minute historical ride down the canal.

This is not your typical historical tour as you sit back and relax on an authentic covered boat modeled after the 1800’s for a narrative of Richmond’s abundant History. Your journey will take you along the James River and Kanawha Canal.

After finishing up the Canal Cruise why not take a stroll along the Canal Walk to see things a little more up close and personal?

The Canal Walk is lined with shops and restaurants, but it is also jam packed with history. The walk along the canal is lined with historical monuments, statues, and plaques to go along with what was learned on the Canal Cruise. You can talk the historical experience even further by visiting the American Civil War Center. Do not forget to pick up a souvenir on your stroll at the wonderful shops as well as grab a bite to eat.  After all, all that walking is guaranteed to work up an appetite.

The tour schedule for the Richmond Canal Cruises for September is Thursday through Saturday noon to seven in the evening, and Sunday noon to five in the evening. Tours leave every hour on the hour from Turning Basin which is located between 14th and Dock streets. Prices for adults are five dollars; and for children (5-12 years old) four dollars. If you are looking for something a little more private check, out their website for private tour and dining information.

Come to Richmond and experience all the rich history we have to offer- you won’t be disappointed.

See You Soon.
Paula & Martin Ramirez
Photo credit:


Sink your Teeth into Richmond

September 15th, 2010

While staying in Richmond, we suggest that you eat like the locals do.  And were would that be you might ask? Well, we are happy to help by sharing a few of the “famous” restaurants in Richmond that you may have seen come across your TV screen, receiving national attention for their delectable delights.

The Travel Channel’s Man vs. Food recently visited our fair city and featured, among others, The Black Sheep and Caliente. The Black Sheep located in the Carver district of Richmond is a fun quirky dining experience. The restaurant is most known for their two foot long battleships subs. These subs come with some not-so-traditional ingredients, but they will be sure to satisfy your huge appetite and your taste buds.

If you are looking for a little bit of spice in your life Caliente is the place. They are home to the Stupid Wings which are so hot people cannot continue eating after just one. But if you manage to eat eight of them under thirty minutes you get yourself a t-shirt as a souvenir. If you are not into crying in public over wings, then the menu is full of other delicious items in which to choose.

BBQ is synonymous with the South and if in the mood, check out Ronnie’s Ribs, Wings, and Other Things, which was featured on both The View and The Best Thing I ever Ate. If you like down home southern style cooking this is the place for you. Stop by and enjoy their famous ribs. Also, be prepared this is not a sit down fancy restaurant it is grab and go. So, why not take advantage of this and bring a picnic to perennial favorite Maymont.

We were also thrilled to learn that Tuffy Stone, owner of Q Barbecue and A Sharper Palate (a frequent Caterer at the Mansion) is regularly featured on TLC’s BBQ Pitmasters.

There are always a million great things to do when visiting Richmond, and now you can run elbows with some of our very own foodie celebrities.

See You Soon.
Paula & Martin Ramirez


Virginia is for Wine Lovers: James River Cellars Winery

September 8th, 2010

When we came from California to Richmond in 2004, we weren’t sure what to expect in the world of wines, but were happily surprised to see that Virginia wine is a thriving industry.

We were equally thrilled to discover James River Cellars Winery, located just a short drive from Historic Mankin Mansion.

The tasting room is open daily with hours from 11am-5pm on Sunday and Monday and from 10am-6pm Tuesday through Friday. Tastings are $5/person and groups of 8 or larger require a reservation.

If coming to town the fourth Friday of the month, be sure to make time for Fridays on the Patio, a wonderful opportunity to enjoy live music, an outdoor tasting wine tent and complimentary hors d’oeuvres.

Visiting this winter? James River Cellars will be participated in the Jingle Bell Wine Trail, with several other vineyards as part of the Heart of Virginia Wine Trail. Please click here for more information.

Please visit James River Cellars’ web site for more information, and to start making plans for your next tripQ

See you soon,
Paula & Martin Ramirez

Photo credit:


A Trip Down Memory Lane: Goochland Drive-In Theatre

September 1st, 2010

Who doesn’t love a walk down memory lane? It’s fun to be a bit nostalgic when you hit the road on another traveling adventure, so you can imagine our thrill when we heard last year that we were getting our very own Drive-In Theater to the Richmond area.

Current admission will run you $7/each for adults and $3/each for children between the ages of 4-11. Children and babies under the age of 3 are free.

The snack bar is filled with treats for the family and the good news is that you won’t have to pick up your jaw after viewing the prices since everything at the snack bar is guaranteed to be less than $3.50. With that being said, they do have strict rules about bringing in your own food so plan to eat on premise.

For more information, please visit their web site. They also maintain a very interactive Facebook Fan Page, which will keep you up to date on all the latest movies.  Promising their season will run well into October, you have plenty of time left this season to make the trip.

We can’t wait to take a trip out to Goochland for a show, and hope you’ll consider adding this little dose of nostalgia to your list of things to do when visiting Richmond.

See you soon,
Paula & Martin Ramirez