The Chesapeake and Ohio Railway (C&O) was a railroad built in 1869 linking Virginia to the Ohio Valley. In front of the Charlottesville old train station we find C&O, without a doubt one of the best restaurants in town. This wonderful venue epitomizes some of the city’s history and passage of time. It is a multifaceted restaurant with several different spaces that certainly require more than one visit!
When you sneak into the mezzanine next to a lumber pile, it feels like a winter shack. Inside, there is a rustic and cozy atmosphere greeted by a big Tulikivi wood stove. From there you can move upstairs to an old classy, American fine-dining room or go downstairs to the old-world inspired bistro, with wood from an old local barn covering the walls and floor. The bistro is a truly beautiful bar space with a few tables in pure white tablecloths. However, the terrace is the summertime favorite…
The succulent menu consists of appetizers, pasta dishes and several fish/meat mains with some sharable sides, combining Southern and fusion recipes rooted in classic French cuisine. Dylan Allwood, Chef de cuisine, explains: “I try so hard to create new dishes and ideas, but we cannot stop doing the classics because people love them. I believe we should always offer a balance.” Among the classics, stand out dishes include the roasted sea scallops, duck confit with gnocchi, crusted rockfish and the highly acclaimed Steak Chinoise.
At C&O, they try to source products locally whenever possible, always looking for the best quality. Lobster and scallops are from Maine, while Ellen is the trout provider from her farm in Virginia. This restaurant is a must for foodies and gourmands. It has a great selection of wines and also a well-stocked bar. And finally, we dare you to try not to eat all the freshly baked buns with Maldon butter!
Hours: Mon-Sun 17-1 am