Friday, October 28, 2011
A new state!
Knocked off another state this week. I hadn't even realized that I've never been to Virginia before. To me, I guess it's just one of those states that feels like I have to have visited at some point.
I was in Richmond for work, and I was fortunate enough to visit during the city's Restaurant Week (Cleveland's is next week!) I tried The Hill Cafe in the Church Hill neighborhood on Wednesday night and got a great meal for its Restaurant Week special of $25.11, of which $2.11 is donated to the food bank.
When visiting someplace new, I like to try local cuisine as much as possible, so I sampled fried oysters, shrimp and grits with bacon, and pecan pie. Maybe I'm the only one who doesn't know this, but the pecan pie I had from two different places had a lot of syrupy chocolate. When I've had it in the past near home, I don't remember it being so chocolately.
Last night, we tried Comfort, which was just featured in GQ this week. Comfort is to Richmond as Melt is to Cleveland -- cult following, comfort food, funky staff and no rezzies accepted. Each dish comes with a choice of two to three Southern sides (of course I opted for three). I had the luscious meatloaf with sweet potatoes, squash casserole and fried okra. I also tried a Legend Brown, a yummy, local brew.
After dinner, I convinced our group to check out The Fan neighborhood since it sounded cool. We went to tiny Bacchus, but since there wasn't room at the bar, we moved on to The Fan House. Lots of cool drink selections here, and the mixologist didn't disappoint. I tried a proseco drink (#11) with sweet potato purée because it sounded so crazy, and it was goooood.
I was disappointed that places seemed to be pretty spread out in The Fan since we couldn't just walk from place to place. I wish I had some daylight hours to explore, particularly since I heard there are a ton of galleries in that area.
I'd be remiss if I didn't mention the charming old row houses from the 1800s in the city, particularly those by VCU, this year's March Madness Cindarella story. (Incidentally, I saw Davidson soon after its storybook March Madness a few years ago during a Charlotte trip.) I also liked the refurbed old tannery and tobacco buildings in the city...so much character.
I wouldn't be disappointed if I was able to visit Richmond again, particularly since it's 90 minutes from Virginia Beach. Hopefully I can get some daylight hours to properly explore the neighborhoods and galleries.