recently reviewed 

Paragon Pharmacy, The Track

I sampled the chicken salad on white toast ($1.95) and discovered chunks of tender white and dark chicken coated in rich mayonnaise, topped with fresh lettuce and tomato, and piled generously between two slices of warm white toast.

Paragon Pharmacy is one of Richmond's hidden treasures. If you don't slow down and take a close look, you could miss it. But when you find it, you'll never forget it.- Sarah Gregory801 W. Cary St.

644-3651 or 643-3797

Lunch: Monday - Friday 8 a.m. - 4 p.m.The Track ($$$)

The Track in Carytown has much the same atmosphere as a real betting track, beautiful and sophisticated with an air of scandal. It's got the layout: a long shadowy room, comfy booths, lots of wood and horse racing memorabilia. It's got the approach: Owner, Chris Liles works the room every night checking on his regulars.

The prices are higher than average, but the food and service are worth it. The clientele come dressed for the ritual: jackets, a few ties, skirts.

And of course they have the food. The menu is short, but I suspect this is to ensure that each dish is a thoroughbred. The bronzed rockfish over saffron rice with a crawfish-compound butter ($25.95) was just what you'd expect: delicate, subtle, a superb blend of flavor, texture and appearance. I was a bit disappointed with the pan-fried rib-eye, however. It didn't have the flavor of well-marbled beef and just didn't grunt like a rib-eye should.

The Track's fine management and creative food have kept it around for 24 years in the midst of cutthroat competition, but some better beef, floor stabilization and a good music library would bring that competition to the next level. - Randall Stamper 2915 Cary Street

Dinner: Tuesday - Thursday 5 - 9:30 p.m.,

Friday-Saturday 5 - 10:30 p.m., Closed Sunday


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