Dining Out in Charlottesville, Virginia

We have been super busy this month and as a new B&B, working on compiling our restaurant menu selection for Arcady Vineyard, for our guests to peruse upon arrival to decide where to go for a wonderful dinner experience.

This is a tough decision in Charlottesville as we have so many from which to choose.

We have a starter list to which we’ll come back and add to as time goes by. This list is by no means completed – there are many wonderful restaurants in town that we and our guests have not yet experienced.

Okay, here goes! And this is not in order of excellence – they are all excellent!

Restaurants

Orzo is one of my favorite restaurants. It’s near the downtown mall and has its own parking. The menu is Mediterranean—food from Italy, Greece, and the South of France, so they have a little of everything. It’s a fun and vivacious wine bar/bistro http://www.orzokitchen.com///

Another bistro we love that is very casual but great food and wine is Bijou, located on the downtown mall. They do not take reservations, so it’s a great place to go on the spur of the moment. They don’t have a website that I can find. The inside is casual, with booths and old movie posters. They serve fresh fish, pork and beef dishes. My favorite is the spicy meatloaf, Chris loves their hanger steak.

Both of these bistros have waitstaff that can actually help you select a wine with dinner whether by the glass or bottle.

If you’re looking for what Chris calls “Great steak and seafood” we recommend the Downtown Grille, also on the walking mall. Guests that stayed with us at Arcady Vineyard B&B went there last weekend and had only one word to describe their steak dinners: “Awesome!” Another great thing about this restaurant is they are non smoking, as some others are here, and have a big comfy bar where you can sit and order off the menu if you don’t want to go into the dining room or have a husband who refuses to make reservations! http://www.downtowngrille.com/

Bang! is just about a block off the downtown walking mall with Asian style tapas and great martinis at 213 Second Street Southwest. Guests have loved this spot where you can order little orders until you are full! Outdoor patio dining is available

Another cutting edge decor restaurant that is fun is Zocolo on the downtown mall at http://www.zocalo-restaurant.com/ This is a Cuban inspired menu which is wonderful.

Hamilton’s Restaurant on the downtown mall at http://www.hamiltonsrestaurant.com/ is a pretty elegant restaurant with lots of great selections. I had a risotto dish there last time that I loved.>

C&O just one block off the downtown mall at http://www.candorestaurant.com/ is a local favorite. Located in a historic building, our guests love this one for special dinners. They love the way the waitstaff can fill you in on what to do in town, going the extra mile in service.

Blue Light Grill on the downtown mall at http://www.bluelightgrill.com/ so impressed some of our guests they insisted to speak to the Chef! They loved their dinner there

L’etoile near UVA at http://www.letoilerestaurant.com/ is a beautiful spot for a romantic dinner. Located on two floors of a brownstone type building, it’s French inspired American food. (e.g. steak with bourbon sauce..yummy.)

Picnics & Vineyard Dining

And of course if you are going out to Monticello or to visit the wineries, there are our favorite places to get your super duper elegant picnic lunch.

Brix – has two locations, one near Jefferson Vineyard so it’s perfect to hit right after touring Monticello. Take a left out of the Monticello exit, and a couple of miles or so up the road when you see the little white church on your right (right after the sign for Jefferson Vineyard) stop at the little stone building across the street from the church. There you can get fantastic sandwiches (yes even a veggie sandwich), sides, fresh baked pastries, gourmet chips and desserts.

Leaving Brix continue the same direction and on your right is the entrance to Jefferson Vineyard. Stop in, get a glass of wine, and picnic right there. They have picnic tables under big shady trees.

The other location is on Pantops, behind the Hallmark store. There they can pack your lunch for you or you can dine there in a charming Italian decor dining room. http://www.brixcafe.com/cafe.htm

If the weather is lousey for dining al fresco, continue past Brix, past Jefferson, keeping always straight/right at the forks, only about five miles down the road you will pop out to see Kluge Estate’s vineyards on your right, and you’ll see their sign on your left shortly after that. Here the menu is displayed visually which is a great idea. They have outside and a few inside tables for dining, with portable tastings which they can pour, explain, and let you carry to your table to enjoy at your leisure. And they have splits of wine just right for lunch for two!http://www.klugeestateonline.com/

If you are staying in town, before you take off to the wineries, another super place to get a wonderful picnic lunch – and an exotic cheese plate!!!! is Feast! http://www.feastvirginia.com/ This shop is located in Main Street Market with parking and there you can go to Feast! for sandwiches, cheese, wine and all kinds of yummy stuff, continue to Gearhart’s for specialty chocolates, and ABC Bakery for crostini, breads, and fresh pastries, or aand beautiful birthday cake if needed!http://www.charlottesvilleonline.com/cville/Shopping/MainStreetMarket http://gearhartschocolates.com/ http://www.albemarlebakingco.com/index10.htm

If you already are out in Crozet, check out Greenwood Country Store on 250 between King Family Vineyard and Cardinal Point, Afton Mountain and the others. They have a little of everything and great sandwiches and a selection of cheeses. You can’t miss them as they have beautiful garden pots and plants out front. I could not find a website for them.

This is all the time I have right now, and I’m sure as soon as I hit “post” there’s going to be another one that hits me that I didn’t mention. More to come!!!

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