Henrico County VA
Henrico County entertainment

Authentically Italian

Short Pump is known for its share of chain restaurants and strip malls, but diners looking for something more distinct can certainly find it without heading downtown or to nearby Charlottesville.

In fact, local husband-and-wife restaurateurs Valeria Bisenti and Doug Muir brought a taste of Charlottesville (and Italy) to Short Pump when they took a chance and opened Bella’s second location in the same shopping strip as Wal-Mart and Peter Chang China Cafe. (Bella’s original location is on Main Street in downtown Charlottesville.)

For a local Italian restaurant, Bella’s is as “Mom and Pop” as its gets. Valeria is Mom, and Doug is Pop. Since its opening about six months ago, diners have been eating rich comfort foods and drinking Italian wines.

Restaurant watch

Find out how your favorite dining establishments fared during their most recent inspections by the Virginia Department of Health.

Scene sparkles, food falls flat

On a rare warm night in late November, the newly opened American Tap Room was, to my surprise, bright and packed with guests – many eating outside.

I didn’t have a clue what to expect from this unheard-of restaurant in an unexpected spot – right in the heart of Willow Lawn. I came to learn it’s not unheard of; it’s a restaurant chain out of Northern Virginia.

“It definitely improves the look of Willow Lawn,” said my friend, who ventured to the new spot with me on a Monday night for dinner one week after the restaurant opened.

Restaurant watch

Find out how your favorite dining establishments fared during their most recent inspections by the Virginia Department of Health.

Brick oven bravado

Before I am comfortable writing a review of a restaurant, I like to visit it twice. Invariably, I find that differences in the timing of a visit can result in vastly different experiences.

Even though I may find a place appealing the first time around, it frequently disappoints me the next time. And if I don't care for a place on the first try, I think it deserves a chance to redeem itself – which it almost always does.

Tazza Kitchen is that rare restaurant that had me at hello, at the getting-to-know-you stage, and at goodbye after both my visits. And trust me, there will be more visits to come.

Restaurant watch

Find out how your favorite dining establishments fared during their most recent inspections by the Virginia Department of Health.

A faithful West End friend

Since October 1990, The Tavern has been as faithful to its clientele as “Cheers,” where everybody knows your name. On a lazy Saturday afternoon recently, repeat customers cozied up to the bar to watch football on one of three flat-screen TVs. Without fail, the staff knew their names and orders without asking.

Native Richmonders know The Tavern, although it is hidden in a little shopping center at the corner of Patterson and Three Chopt. From the minute you walk in, you’re greeted with a warm smile in the relaxed, comfortable atmosphere. The wooden booths, hardwood floors and large bar give it a true tavern feel.

Restaurant watch

Find out how your favorite dining establishments fared during their most recent inspections by the Virginia Department of Health.

Restaurant watch

Find out how your favorite dining establishments fared during their most recent inspections by the Virginia Department of Health.

Page 6 of 18 pages ‹ First  < 4 5 6 7 8 >  Last ›

Reader Survey | Advertising | Email updates

Classifieds

SAVE on Cable TV-Internet-Digital Phone. Packages start at $89.99/mo (for 12 months.) Options from ALL major service providers. Call Acceller today to learn more! CALL 1-888-686-5081.
Full text

Place an Ad | More Classifieds

Calendar

Lavender Fields Herb Farm, 11300 Winfrey Rd., will host its Christmas Open House event from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Nov. 28-29. There will be classes, demos, fresh herbal tastings… Full text

Your weather just got better.

Henricopedia

Henrico's Top Teachers