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Getting a taste of traditional Southern fare is great, but Charlottesville has so much more to offer than just fried chicken and pulled pork. Whether you are in the mood for Southern cuisine with a modern twist or classic French cooking, you’ll find it in this Virginia city. Here are our picks for the best places to eat in Charlottesville.
Fossett’s Restaurant. This Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star restaurant inside Keswick Hall at Monticello serves classically inspired culinary creations. Between courses featuring dishes like roasted beets straight from the hotel’s garden and Chesapeake bouillabaisse, you can admire the picturesque views through the floor-to-ceiling windows. On a nice day, dine alfresco on the patio.
Old Mill Room. Located within The Boar’s Head, Old Mill Room is a classic Charlottesville restaurant. Boasting a Virginia atmosphere, the dining room was built from the remains of an old grist mill on the Hardware River. The menu reflects the romantic ambiance with dishes like pan-fried Carolina quail and rock shrimp crusted halibut.
C & O Restaurant. Though not as formal as some of the other locales, C & O serves six unique dining experiences, each with its own personality. Whether you’re eating in the bistro or dining on the terrace, you’ll find a menu that’s peppered with traditional Southern offerings with an upscale twist — think house-smoked pork loin and sweetbreads.
Clifton Inn. This Relais & Chateaux restaurant is located within the eponymous inn. Dishing out a delightful combination of world flavors, Clifton Inn splits its menu into four parts — delicate, light, full-bodied and robust. Pair your meal with wine from the restaurant’s top-notch wine cellar, and you’ve got yourself quite the gourmet meal.
L’Etoile. Pulling the finest ingredients from local farmers, L’Etoile churns out delicious dishes created with the chef’s French culinary techniques. You’ll find items such as shrimp and grits with petit mirepoix, roasted tomato and applewood smoked bacon, as well as entrées like sea bream with carrot risotto and kale. On Wednesday and Thursday, L’Etoile offers a special three-course prix fixe menu.