Critic's Picks 

Looking for a good dinner option? Give these restaurants a try.


Ironhorse  Modern American bistro and tavern; seasonal menu, seafood, hand-cut steaks, specials. Lunch and dinner Mon. - Sat., bar menu, occasional music. 100 S. Railroad Ave. 752-6410. $$-$$$ NS

carytown/museum district

Amici Ristorante  New dAccor, expanded menu of fine Northern Italian cuisine, house-made breads and desserts, longtime critics' favorite. Lunch and dinner Mon. — Sat. 3343 W. Cary St. 353-4700. $$$ NS inside.

Can Can  French brasserie with raw bar and changing menu. Breakfast pastries and coffee, lunch and dinner daily. Sun. brunch. 3120 W. Cary St. 358-7274. $$$

Carytown Sushi  Fresh, friendly and urban; Japanese fusion dishes, platters, full bar, great location. Lunch Mon. — Sat., dinner nightly. 2923 W. Cary St. 355-0058.

Mezzanine Restaurant  Intimate spot for dinner and brunch, organic foods, seafood-centric, eclectic seasonal menu with nightly specials, bar. Dinner Tue. — Sun. Sunday brunch. 3433 W. Cary St. 353-2186.

Zeus Gallery Cafe Intimate. Steaks, seafood and pasta. Chalkboard menu changes daily,  Sunday brunch. Dinner nightly.  201 N. Belmont Ave. 359-3219. $$$


Bistro Twenty-Seven  Swank setting for American regional cuisine with French, Italian influence. Weekday lunch, dinner Mon. — Sat. 27 W. Broad St. 780-0086. $$

CafAc Rustica  Sandwiches, salads, roasted meats, lively chef-owner. Lunch weekdays, Sunday brunch. Dinner: Tuesday-Saturday, 5-10 p.m. 414 E. Main St. 225-8811. $

Chez Foushee  Seasonal menu for First Fridays dinner, weekday luncheon classic. 203 N. Foushee St. 648-3225. $$

Comfort  Simple chicken, steak and fish dinners with sides like mac and cheese, black-eyed peas. Lunch Mon.-Fri. Dinner Mon.-Sat. Sunday brunch. 200 W. Broad St. 780-0004.  $$

Croaker's Spot  Famous fish, cornbread, charming setting. Lunch and dinner daily, bar and patio. 119 E. Leigh St. 421-0560. $

Gibson's Grill at the National Theater  Big menu and drink list, booths on two levels, hearty fare moderately priced. Weekday lunch, dinner and lounge nightly. 708 E. Broad St.  644-2637. $-$$

Lemaire   New look, menu, bar with seasonal small plates, entrees including foie gras-sauced burgers, steaks and seafood. Extensive wine list, cocktails, moderate pricing in local landmark with top chef and superior service. Open nightly. New weekday lunch hours, noon-2 p.m. Inside the Jefferson Hotel, 101 W. Franklin St. 649-4644.

Tarrant's CafAc  Historic drugstore with wide menu of soups, seafood, specials. Notable chef. Lunch, dinner and bar daily, Sun. brunch. 1 W. Broad St. 225-0035. $

fan/oregon hill

Acacia Mid-Town   Top chef, seasonal menus, seafood a specialty. Prix-fixe, tasting menus, wine dinners, local dining favorite. Dinner Mon. - Sat. 2601 W. Cary St. 562-0138.

Bacchus Classic setting for fresh seafood and Italian-American flavors. Open nightly for dinner. 2 N. Meadow St. 355-9919. $$$

Cous Cous  Mediterranean and Moroccan fare and bar in relaxed, exotic setting near VCU. Lamb, shrimp, chicken. Lunch weekdays, tapas and dinner Mon. — Sat., closed Sun. 900 W. Franklin St. 358-0868. $-$$ NS til 9pm.

Davis & Main  Casual spot for grilled meats, salmon to sandwiches, vegetarian. Dinner daily. 2501 W. Main St. 353-6641. $$ NSS until 10 p.m.

Edo's Squid  Authentic Italian antipasti and entrees. Lunch and dinner daily, no lunch Sun. 411 N. Harrison. 864-5488. $$
Helen's  Perennial favorite for seafood, pasta,  seasonal specials.  Dinner nightly, weekend brunch, busy bar scene. 2527 W. Main St. at Robinson. 358-4370. $$

Helen's Perrenial favorite for seafood, pasta, seasonal specials. Dinner nightly, weekend brunch, busy bar scene. 2527 W. Main St. at Robinson, 358-4370. $$

Ipanema CafAc  Cozy basement spot with hipsters and creative vegetarian food. Lunch Mon.-Fri., dinner nightly. 917 W. Grace St. 213-0190. $  until 10 p.m.

Kuba Kuba Bright Cuban bodega with grilled sandwiches, tuna steaks,  paella and Latin specials. Lunch and dinner daily. Weekend brunch. 1601 Park Ave. 355-8817. $

Mamma ‘Zu Popular, authentic no-frills Italian dining, serious food, a local landmark. Lunch Mon.-Fri. and dinner Mon.-Sat. 501 S. Pine St. 788-4205. $$

Nile Ethiopian Restaurant Authentic Ethiopian fare,  seafood, vegan dishes. Lunch and dinner Tues.- Sun. 309 N. Laurel St. 225-5544. $

Rowland Fine Dining  Lobster potpie, pecan pork chops, blackened fish with ActouffAce. Dinner nightly., brunch Sunday. Patio dining. 2132 W. Main St. 257-9885. $$$

Six Burner Restaurant American cuisine in casual bistro, changing menu with twists. Dinner Mon.-Sat., late hours on weekends. 1627 W. Main St. 353-4060 $$

north side

Buz and Ned's Real Barbecue Famous for pork barbecue, beef brisket, ribs and sides. Lunch and dinner daily, outdoor dining. 1119 N. Boulevard. 355-6055. $

Stronghill Dining Company Modern Southern cooking in a relaxed, creative atmosphere; drink specials at the bar, lounge. Weekday lunch. Dinner nightly. 1200 N. Boulevard. 359-0202. $$

Tastebuds   New, larger dining room for eclectic American seasonal menu by noted chef. Dinner Tues. — Sat. 4019 MacArthur Ave. 261-6544. $$

church hill/shockoe bottom

CafAc Gutenberg  New seasonal tavern-style menu and decor; breakfast, lunch and dinner, wine and beer, Wed. - Sun.1700 E. Main St. 497-5000. $-$$ W

Halligan Bar & Grill  Neighborhood pub and comfort-food cafAc run by local firefighters. Hearty meals, unique and cozy setting. Lunch Thurs.-Sun. and dinner daily. 3 N. 17th St. 447-7981.  $

Havana ‘59  Cuban-inspired local landmark serving pork, lamb, seafood, desserts, cigars, busy bar scene, upstairs patio. Dinner Tue.-Sat. 16 N. 17th St. 780-2822.

Julep's New Southern Cuisine  Fried green tomatoes, shrimp and grits, beef tenderloin with braised Vidalia onions, romantic setting. Dinner Mon. - Sat. 1719 E. Franklin. 377-3968  $$$

LuLu's Restaurant Chicken pot pie, beef stroganoff, meatloaf with mushroom demi-glace, desserts.  Lunch Mon. - Fri. 11:30 a.m.-3 p.m., dinner Mon. 6-10 p.m., Tues.-Sat. 6-11 p.m. Sun. brunch 10 a.m.-3 p.m. 21 N 17th St. 343-9771 NS until 10 p.m. $$

Millie's Diner Eclectic food with national reputation. Menu on chalkboards, popular brunch. Lunch Tues.-Fri. Dinner Tue.-Sun. Brunch Sat.-Sun. 2603 E. Main St.  643-5512. $$$

Sensi Italian Chop House  Nouveau Italian cuisine from notable chef in swank Shockoe Bottom setting. Acclaimed pasta and seafood, grilled meats, desserts. Dinner nightly, lounge later on weekends.  2222 E. Cary St. 648-3463. $$$

shockoe slip

The Dining Room at The Berkeley Hotel  American with European flair. Lunch and dinner daily. 1200 E. Cary St. 780-1300. $$$

Europa  Mediterranean cafAc and tapas bar with after-hours crowd. Dinner nightly. 1409 E. Cary St. 643-0911. $$

south side/ midlothian

Carena's Jamaican Grille   Full menu, full bar, colorful and casual. Curry chicken and goat, oxtails, apps, salads. Lunch and dinner Mon.-Sat. 7102 Midlothian Turnpike. 422-5375. $

Pescados  Seafood with a Latin twist. Dinner Mon.-Sat. 13126 Midlothian Turnpike. 379-7121. $$$

Q Barbeque Award-winning barbecue and sides in new business from a longtime pitmaster. Lunch and dinner daily, eat in or take-out. 2077 Wal-Mart Way, Midlothian. 897-9007.   $

Siam Paragon Delectable Thai standards, soft-shell crabs with chili-basil sauce, dessert specials in colorful cafe.Lunch Mon.-Sat., dinner daily. 10445 Midlothian Turnpike. 272-9011. $

west end/short pump

Angela's Ristorante  Authentic Northern and Southern Italian recipes by Chef Michael. Dinner Tue.-Sun., closed Mon. 425 N. Ridge Road. 288-7483. $$$

Azzurro  Upscale Italian cuisine. Brick-oven pizzas, fish, pasta and wine. Cozy tables and candlelight. 6221 River Road. Tue. jazz night.  Lunch Mon.-Sat. Dinner daily. 282-1509. $$$

Buckhead's  Aged beef, fresh seafood, classic steakhouse setting with specialty bourbons at the bar. Dinner nightly. 8510 Patterson Ave. 750-2000. $$$

Chez Max Classic French cuisine by a master chef in a quiet setting. Dinner Tue.-Sat. 10622 Patterson Ave. 754-3464. $$$

Coast   Seafood and upscale entrees, bar, wines, intimate setting with patio. Lunch Tue. - Fri., dinner Tue. - Sat. 5806 Grove Ave. 288-8466.

Dd33 Asian Bistro  Chic fusion cuisine, Korean short ribs to Alaskan sable. Dinner nightly. 3601-A Cox Road, Twin Oaks shopping center. 747-8333. $$$

Full Kee   Authentic Chinese restaurant favored by local chefs and foodies; exotic dishes and traditional favorites. Lunch and dinner daily. 6400 Horsepen Road. 673-2233. $

Grandpa Eddie's Alabama BBQ   Larger quarters for popular smoked barbecue; beef brisket and peanut butter pie are classics; live music on weekends. Lunch and dinner daily. 11129 Three Chopt Road. 270-7427. $

Ichiban Japanese cuisine, sushi and noodles. Lunch and dinner Tue. - Sun. 10490 Ridgefield Parkway, near Food Lion. 750-2380. $

Little Venice Restaurant & Bar  Upscale Italian. Lunch Mon.-Fri. Dinner Mon.-Sat. Glen Eagles Shopping Center on Ridgefield Parkway. 741-6022. $$$

Mekong  Popular Vietnamese. Extensive beer list. Lunch and dinner daily. 6004 W. Broad St. 288-8929. $

Patina Grill   International cuisine in stylish, eclectic setting. Local favorite for seasonal menus, nightly martini happy hour. Dinner nightly. 3416 Lauderdale Drive. 360-8217. $$$

Shackleford's  Consistently flavorful American fare; seafood, raw bar, outdoor dining. Lunch and dinner daily. 10496 Ridgefield Parkway. 741-9900. $$


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