Dining on the Downtown Mall
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Living in Charlottesville: Eats & Drinks

Burgers & BBQ

Ace Biscuit & Barbecue Student Favorite
711 Henry Ave

"Where Downtown Meets Down Home." Southern soul food, barbecue, and beer. Also: Chicken Fried Waffles.

BBQ Exchange
102 Martinsburg Avenue, Gordonsville

Located about 30 minutes outside of Charlottesville, this barbecue restaurant features a variety of delicious southern treats: pork belly, banana pudding, fried green tomatoes and an ever-changing variety of chilis. It's worth the drive.

Belmont Bar-B-Que
816 Hinton Avenue (across from La Taza coffee house)

Try the slop bucket. Most seating is outside.

Big Jim's
202 10th St. NW

No credit cards. Pulled-pork BBQ, burgers.

Blue Ridge Pig
Rt. 151, Nellysford (25 miles west on the way to Wintergreen Ski Resort)

Barbeque joint. No credit cards.

Boylan Heights Student Favorite
102 14th Street, NW (located on the Corner)

This popular Corner hangout features a wide variety of burgers. Try the onion rings. Outdoor seating.

Buck Island BBQ
2243 Thomas Jefferson Parkway (Route 53 near Monticello)

Buffalo Wild Wings
1935 Arlington Blvd (Barracks Rd. Shopping Center)

Sports bar. Wings, burgers, sandwiches. Popular with law students, but the service is really slow and it’s really smoky. Call ahead for takeout. Tuesday wing day and Wednesday leg day.

Citizen BurgerFaculty Fave
212 E. Main St.

Burgers made from locally farmed, antibiotic-free beef. In the former Siips location on the Downtown Mall.

Cook-Out Student Favorite
1254 Emmet St. N.

Growing fast food chain that offers a wide menu of cook-out style food, with rave reviews for its milkshakes.

Five Guys
1119 Emmett St. (Barracks Rd.) 975-4897
321 E. Main St. (Downtown) 293-2847
201 Connor Dr. (Hollymead Town Center) 963-4897

Delicious old-fashioned burgers and boardwalk fries. A popular chain in the Washington, D.C., area, it's the In-N-Out burger joint for the East Coast. Shelled peanuts available to munch on while you wait for your burger. Outdoors seating available in warm weather.

Fox's Café
403 Avon St

No credit cards. Burgers, hot dogs.

Henry's Restaurant
310 E. Main Street (on downtown mall in Milgraum Center)

Home-cooked lunches, dinners and deserts.

1404 E. High St.

No credit cards. Breakfast, foot-long hot dogs, BBQ. A Charlottesville staple.

Jinx's Pit Stop Barbeque Faculty Fave
1307 E. Market St.

It doesn't look like much on the outside, but the barbeque is great. It's cooked in a pit over hickory chips. Voted "Best Barbeque" by readers of C-Ville Weekly in 2001. No credit cards. Takeout and catering available.

The Nook
415 E. Market St. (Downtown Mall)

All-day breakfast. "Comfort food." Famous for the Nook Burger, a big bacon cheeseburger. Validates parking.

Mel's Café
719 W. Main St.

Southern food, like sweet potato pie. No credit cards.

Red Robin

Franchise burger joint outside Fashion Square Mall, on 29 North.

Riverside Lunch Faculty Fave Student Favorite
1429 Hazel St.

Serving since 1935, this place is a very clean basic diner, where, As Garden & Gun Magazine puts it,
"... hunters...collide with pre-tailgate U.Va. football fans...." . Some call the burgers the best in town. Sandwiches, chili dogs, cheesesteak. No credit cards. Sports, including U.Va. games, play on the
HD screens.

St. Maarten's Café
1400 Wertland St. (Corner)

This Caribbean-themed joint pronounced St. Mar-TENS, has a varied menu from seventeen different kinds of burgers and lots of bar food, to panini, pasta, scallops, chicken fajitas and salads. Tuesday night features double wings and Thursday serves up a cheeseburger platter special. See website for other daily specials.

Tip Top
1420 Rt. 250, just past the Pantops Mountain Shopping Center, on the left

Italian and Greek food; pizza and gyros.

Wayside Takeout & Catering
2203 Jefferson Park Avenue

Current catering rates on their website.

The White Spot Student Favorite
1407 University Ave. (Corner)

A U.Va. tradition and greasy spoon. Gus burger (with fried egg), Greek salads, gyros. Charlottesville tradition. No credit cards.

Wild Wing Cafe Student Favorite
820 W Main St. (near Amtrak station)

Wings at varying spicy levels, chicken, grilled foods. Huge projection-screen and lots of TVs.


"The evening began at Damon's, the ribs-and-beer chain rated by you as the Law School's top sports bar. Perhaps the best thing about Damon's is its conscientious coverage of NHL hockey, making it a refuge of sorts for hockey sympathizers. Game-night beers are served up by Barry, an affable Northeast Philly transplant who isn't afraid to voice his opinions about the Flyers' defense, vulgar though they may be. Pluses: Eight big-screen TVs, hockey, Tex-Mex spring rolls. Minuses: Middle-aged testosterone, high prices."

—Andy Lippstone '01
Virginia Law Weekly


Looking for chain restaurants? Although not generally listed here, Charlottesville also has popular chains like Chili's, Ruby Tuesday, Applebee's, Red Lobster and more.


If you're willing to travel for some old-school delicious barbecue, check out Peck's BBQ in Waynesboro, about a 30-minute drive away. They also have burgers, sundaes, hush puppies, and assorted other goodies. Be warned: they close at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday and are closed Sunday.


Restaurants come and go. For the latest on Charlottesville restaurants, see the list in the back of C-Ville Weekly, (Dining Website) or check out Charlottesville-Dining.com, which offers surveys and rankings of local restaurants. For true-blue foodies, the Hook's food blog, The Dish, offers breaking news on dining and food.

What's your opinion? Add to the C'ville guide, report new information and let us know what you think. We reserve the right to edit or reject submissions.