Fredericksburg City Beat

This blog includes news about City Hall, city schools and other 22401 news.

Pamela Gould reports on City Hall. You can reach her at 540-735-1972 or Robyn Sidersky reports on city schools. You can reach her at 540-374-5413 or

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Bavarian Chef could take former Claiborne’s spot

Fredericksburg City Council members will have their third downtown incentives deal before them Tuesday–a $90,000 deal to get the Bavarian Chef, a popular German restaurant that now operates in Madison County, to open a second location in Fredericksburg.

The old train station at the end of Caroline Street has been vacant since Claiborne’s abruptly closed in September. According to the documents attached to Tuesday’s meeting agenda, the Bavarian Chef applied for an incentives deal on March 1.

Council members discussed the deal in closed session at their March 9 meeting (They can do that as long as the business name hasn’t been announced.), and they’ll be asked to vote on the agreement on Tuesday.

Bavarian Chef owners Jerome and Christine Thalwitz intend to open in late April or early May. Their performance agreement requires them to open for business by June 1. They have signed a 10-year lease with Tommy Mitchell, who owns the train station.

The 10-year incentives deal the council will consider consists of:

  • a 100 percent waiver of BPOL taxes – worth up to $4,000 a year.
  • a 10 percent rebate of sales and meals taxes – worth up to $14,000 a year.

The maximum annual incentive paid out, between the BPOL and sales and meals rebates, cannot exceed $18,000. Over the course of 10 years, the business can collect a maximum of $90,000 in tax-based incentives.

Bavarian Chef is projecting that it will generate $1.8 million in annual sales. That would bring the city $127,800 a year in local tax revenue, before incentives are paid out.

Bavarian Chef would be the third downtown business to receive tax-based incentives from the City Council (many others have received one-time EDA grants to help projects along). Capital Ale House and Kybecca are both in the process of reporting to receive their first year of incentive payouts, something we’ll be reporting on shortly.

Pick up tomorrow’s Free Lance-Star for more on this story.


  • Downtown Merchant

    It seems to me that if the Bavarian Chef generates $1.8 million per year, he or she might not need $4,000 a year in tax relief. How about if the city used that money to clear the snow from downtown streets instead of giving to a business that projects such a prodigious income? Wouldn’t that be a more equitable use of city funds & serve all the downtown merchants better?

  • cassandrasdaddy

    bavrian chef?! YESSSSS!

  • Angela

    I love the Bavarian Chef, it would be a great additon to downtown…I’m crossing my fingers.

  • Jeri

    We love the Bavarian Chef!! It would definitely draw more people to downtown. Hope it happens! We’ll be the first in line.

  • stonewallpark

    Give me that kind of money and i will start a place called PARIS INN. and have good old soul food and some good redneck apple pie with the BULL and the BUD. I may bring in some Vegas show girls in on the train.THE LADIES of the town could have their night of fun to.Now that sounds like a winner to me,the only other thing we would need is a Church of Whats Happening Now to give tax free donations to. Cash only no credit cards please.

  • Jim

    That would be a great investment for downtown.

  • Paul

    Smart move by the city, and very forward-thinking on their part. Encouraging a destination business like the Bavarian Chef will pay dividends FAR above the small tax rebate.

  • Jeremy

    How is that “forward thinking?” It’s “Good-ol-boy” back room deals in a transparent attempt to generate more revenue for the city. This city government has no interest in anything but sales and real-estate taxes.

    Development of culture and the arts would be a FAR more forward thinking approach for the government. They’re thinking of the short-term where some condos and some restaurants will generate a small amount of revenue. If they really wanted to promote fiscal growth, they’d give people a reason to want to come to downtown Fredericksburg to eat, sleep, and even live!

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