Throughout the month of August, we asked Streaking the Lawn readers to nominate their favorite Charlottesville establishments across 14 different categories that would be of interest to someone visiting Charlottesville on game day. We took the top nominees in each category and we put it to a vote among all of you, our loyal readers, to select what you think is Charlottesville Game Day's Greatest.
Those of you who grew up in Charlottesville or attended the University will think back fondly of the winners in each category (to the extent they even existed back in your day). Those of you in Charlottesville now can start creating your C'ville bucket list. And those of you visiting our humble town on game day can use this as your guide to Charlottesville and beyond. Only the best establishments make this list.
If you were a winner or nominee, please email us! We have something special for you.
2015 Charlottesville Game Day's Greatest!
|Greatest Pre-Game Bar||Boylan Heights||If you’re looking for a place to grab a bite and some brews before the game, look no further than Boylan Heights, which features an incredible gourmet burger menu that can be as simple or fancy as your heart’s desire. Plus, they offer tater tots, so that alone could be a reason why Virginia fans love this establishment. On game day, they’re the ones on the Corner that’s firing the V-sabres onto the 14th Street overpass, and that alone should be reason to throw some dollars their way.|
|Other Nominees: The Virginian, The Biltmore St. Maarten Café, South Street Brewery|
|Greatest Post-Game Bar||Boylan Heights||In a sweep of two of the most highly-coveted categories, Boylan Heights comes out again on top as the Greatest Post-Game Bar as well. Whether it’s after the game or really on any other weekend night, you will be sure to spot some local UVa celebrities, as this is a big hot spot for the student-athlete crowd as well.|
|Other Nominees: The Biltmore, The Virginian, St. Maarten Café, Michael's Bistro|
|Greatest Brunch Spot||Bluegrass Grill & Bakery||The biscuits. Oh, the biscuits. This is a small, cozy atmosphere, but Bluegrass Grill is worth the wait for their homemade biscuits and other pastries. What a classic omelet? They’ll take care of that for you. Want bananas foster pancakes? Yep. Want pig candy? Yeah, they’ve got that too. At the time of publish, they’re featuring Princes Leia Pancakes – cinnamon roll pancakes with sweet cream cheese and whipped cream. Mouth is watering, hold on.|
|Other Nominees: Bodo's Bagels, Pigeon Hole, The Virginian, St. Maarten Café|
|Greatest Tailgate Caterers||GOCO Food Mart||What a underdog victory! Beating out some of the more oft-heralded tailgate providers in town, GOCO is a humble, local gas station that can hook you up with platters of all the tailgate fixin’s you’re looking for – fried chicken, potato salads, sandwiches, even breakfast biscuits. Those in Charlottesville who know GOCO are passionate about this unassuming service station.|
|Other Nominees: Wayside Chicken, Raising Cane's, Take It Away, Food of All Nations, St. Maarten Café|
|Greatest Sightseeing||Grounds / The Lawn||Home of a UNESCO World Heritage Site, we don’t think we need to put much description in the Lawn for locals or visitors alike. It’s a short 15-minute walk from Scott Stadium, and in the process you’ll walk by first year dorms, academic buildings, a beautiful amphitheater, and finally you’ll reach our website’s namesake, the Lawn. Swing by the Range – just on the outside of the Lawn – to get a peep at Edgar Allan Poe’s room, still preserved (or at least staged).|
|Other Nominees: Monticello, Humpback Rock, Carter Mountain Orchard, Blue Mountain Brewery|
|Greatest Grab-n-Go Breakfast||Bodo's Bagels||We have to admit to you – the competition wasn’t even close on this one. These New York style bagels are right up there with the best of what the Big Apple has to offer. Order literally any bagel off the menu. You’re guaranteed to love it. It’s the perfect hangover cure as well. Pro tip? If you’re ordering a breakfast sandwich, you have to ask for the cheese to be melted. Pro tip 2? If you’re ordering a dozen to take back with you, go ahead and ask them to slice them in half. It’ll cost you ten cents per bagel, but it means once you get home, you can wrap em, freeze em, and be ready to toss them into the toaster without thawing, because it’ll already have been sliced.|
|Other Nominees: Ace Biscuit and BBQ, Bojangles', Hardees, Leftover Raising Cane's|
|Greatest Dinner Restaurant||The Local||Locally-sourced food is the highlight of this restaurant as the menu changes seasonally to keep everyone interested and coming back. Whether you want seafood, steak, duck, or pasta, The Local has it all, and it’s prepared with seasonal vegetables and delectable sauces. It features local singers and songwriters with live music, as well as local artists’ exhibits for your viewing pleasure (and for purchase!). Also, Monday nights are half-off wine. Winning.|
|Other Nominees: Citizen Burger Bar, Mas Tapas, The Virginian, Tavola, Zocalo, South Street Brewery, Michael's Bistro, Blue Light Grill|
|Greatest Beers on Tap||Mellow Mushroom||Chain restaurant as this may be, the Mellow Mushroom is a staple in Charlottesville. Come for the trivia and garlic knots, stay for the extensive beer collection they have available. The beer menu is always changing, and includes both local, national, and international breweries, so you’ll definitely want to check them out. They also have $2.00 pint nights on Tuesdays.|
|Other Nominees: Sedona Taphouse, World of Beer, Michael's Bistro, Citizen Burger Bar|
|Greatest Wine List||C&O Restaurant||This isn’t the first wine award that C&O has received, having been named the Best Restaurant Wine List in C-Ville before. Their wait staff is knowledgable and their selection is extensive and refined.|
|Other Nominees: Tavola, Michael's Bistro, The Virginian, Café Caturra|
|Greatest Vineyard / Brewery / Distillery||Devil's Backbone Brewery||Located just outside of Charlottesville in Roseland, VA, the brewery has been around since 2008. The views are stunning and more what you’d expect from a winery than a brewery, and just last year they were named the Mid-Size Brewing Company & Brew Team of the Year at the 2014 Great American Beer Festival. Pick up a case before your next tailgate, or mark off some time over the weekend to swing by.|
|Other Nominees: Blue Mountain brewery, King Family Vineyards, Veritas Vineyard & Winery, Pippin Hill Farm & Vineyards|
|Greatest Fried Chicken||GOCO Food Mart||The great coup continues for GOCO, ousting Wayside and others as the Greatest Fried Chicken in Charlottesville. You might not believe that "gas station fried chicken" can be this good, but once you get your hands on their chicken breasts, you won’t forget it.|
|Other Nominees: Wayside Chicken, Raising Cane's, Bojangles', Michie's Tavern, Mel's Café|
|Greatest Coffee||Shenandoah Joe's||Local coffee and espresso roasted and brewed to perfection. In fact, the Ivy Coffee Bar brews their coffee one cup at a time. They’ve been around since 1993 (ancient in internet years) and use more than 25 different varieties of Arabica beans from around the world. They also still roast, blend, and bag every order by hand. Go ahead and try to find fresher coffee than this. You won’t.|
|Other Nominees: Greenberry's, Mudhouse, Bodo's Bagels, Grit Coffee|
|Greatest Late Night Grub||Littlejohns Deli||There’s nothing that needs to be said about this Corner staple that any UVA student or alumnus doesn’t already know. The subs are inexpensive, meats are overloaded with goodness, and the service is speedy, which is exactly what you need from this 24-hour NY deli that will have lines wrapped around the restaurant at 2 a.m. They’ve only got two specialty subs named after athletes – the Sampson (A monster 12" combo of choice roast beef, turkey, shredded lettuce, tomato, horseradish mayo, 1000 Island and melted American) and the Chris Long Sub (12" sub roll with shaved rib-eye steak, horseradish mayo, lettuce, tomato, sweet peppers, bacon, sautéed onions, and melted provolone cheese).|
|Other Nominees: The White Spot, Christian's Pizza, Marco and Luca's Dumplings, The College Inn, St. Maarten Café|
|Greatest Gear Depot||Mincer's||Mincer’s is on the Corner and will satisfy all your UVA gear needs. They’ve got all the freshest apparel to celebrate whatever latest national championship the Hoos have picked up, plus they have their signature Orange Tag sale rack just outside the store, where you can really snag some great deals. It’s not just clothes, either. They’ve got mugs, auto décor, game balls…you name it, they’ve got it. Bring cash, though, because if you are armed with a credit card, you’re likely to reach your spending limit.|
|Other Nominees: UVa Bookstore|