Henrico County VA
Henrico County entertainment

A taste of Japan


In a spot that could be easily overlooked is a surprising, and delicious, Japanese restaurant. In a tiny nook in the shops at the corner of Ridgefield Parkway and Pump Road sits a welcoming, warm and comfortable Asian restaurant called Ichiban, which means “the best.”

The restaurant, tucked between a couple others in the Gleneagles Shopping Center, was so quiet and dark that it was difficult to tell if it was open at 6:30 p.m. on a Monday. When I opened the door, I smiled when I looked inside.

‘Cooking with love’

Although I’m a Henrico native, I’d never ventured into India K’Raja, Henrico’s first Indian restaurant.

It’s easy to find in the shops at Tuckernuck Drive and Broad Street, across from David’s Bridal. It’s even easier to smell. As we walked from the parking lot, Indian spices and music drew us in from the sidewalk. I was giddy as I entered the restaurant; I love Indian food.

I immediately noticed the casual nature of the restaurant and easy-going, friendly staff. It has been around for 18 years without much updating to furniture.

Restaurant watch

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

Doughnut shops team up

Usually chefs are hesitant to swap their prized recipes, but for a couple of local doughnut shops, sharing their sugary treats with each other has proved to be the perfect recipe for sweet success.

Last month, Glen Allen-based Daylight Donuts merged with Dixie Donuts in Carytown to bring their customers each other’s doughnuts.

Both will remain open, but as of Jan. 1, Daylight Donuts became the second Dixie Donuts.

Daylight’s yeast-glazed doughnuts are now being sold at the Carytown shop and Dixie Donuts, known for their gourmet specialty treats, sent some of their recipes over to the former Daylight Donuts including one called The Virginian, which has sweet potato icing and pecans.

M Bistro and Wine Bar closing Feb. 1

A Rocketts Landing restaurant is closing its doors Feb. 1.

M Bistro and Wine Bar announced by e-mail last night that it would close after three years in business.

"The friendships, business partnerships and relationships we have developed over the past few years make this a very difficult letter to write," Chef Michael Hall wrote. "Please know that it was a very difficult decision for us to make as our lease period comes to an end. We wholeheartedly thank all of our families, friends, wonderful staff, investors, neighbors and the Richmond community at large for a wonderful experience. We would especially like to thank Rocketts Landing for welcoming us to their neighborhood with warmth and open arms.

Barbecue roadtrip


I was simultaneously relieved and excited when I walked into Deep Run Roadhouse on Gayton Road; I knew it was another restaurant venture by Paul Hubbard of Alamo BBQ in Church HIll, but I hadn’t considered that the menu items would be, to my delight, much of the same.

Fifteen years ago, Hubbard, a graduate of Godwin High School and longtime Henrico native, dreamed of opening a restaurant honoring his hometown park – Deep Run Park on Ridgefield Parkway. What he didn’t know was that barbecue was to be on the menu.

Restaurant watch

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

Glen Allen’s party-starter


The dance party (mostly for Baby Boomers) was on during a recent Saturday night at JJ’s Grille on Staples Mill Road in Glen Allen. An hour before the start of the live music at 8 p.m., it was difficult to get in and sit down at a table to have a bite before the party.

When the five members of the featured band “The English Channel” arrived they were greeted like friends and people started to drift towards the small area near the window front of the grill that later served as a dance floor. And when the band started the first of its 1960s and ‘70s pop tunes, the dance floor was filled in an eye blink. It stayed like this for the whole set – two hours of Beatles, Rolling Stones and other sing-along and dance-along tunes pleasantly presented with skill and perfect volume for the now-small space.

Potbelly opening in March


A Chicago-based sub chain has bellied up to the Richmond market to open its first shop in Henrico County.

Potbelly Sandwich Works is slated to open in the Colonnades West shopping center on West Broad Street in Glen Allen in mid-March. The shop serves up subs, sandwiches, salads, soup and milkshakes and since opening in 1977, has expanded to close to 300 shops across the U.S.

David Duke, primary owner of the local Potbelly has been hungry for a piece of the Henrico restaurant scene for some time now.

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