The Charlottesville 29

If there were just 29 restaurants in Charlottesville, what would be the ideal 29?

Tag: Hamiltons’

Hamiltons’ Auction


Here is your chance to experience Hamiltons’ like you never have experienced it before, while helping to feed the area’s hungry. It’s The Charlottesville 29 Restaurant Auctions, presented by McGuireWoods. Along with all of the other restaurants in The Charlottesville 29, Hamiltons’ has created a signature experience available to whoever pledges the highest donation to The Blue Ridge Area Food Bank. Thanks to the generosity of Hamiltons’, the winning bid goes directly to the food bank, and each dollar donated is enough to provide four meals to the area’s hungry. So, a winning bid of, say, $2,500 would mean not just a wonderful meal for the winner and their guests, but also 10,000 more meals for the area’s hungry.

The Hamiltons’ signature experience for The Charlottesville 29 Restaurant Auctions:

Chef’s Dinner for 10

Hamiltons’ chef Curtis Shaver has been named one of Charlottesville’s Rising Stars for his potential to reach the next generation’s Mount Rushmore of Charlottesville Chefs. The auction winner and nine guests will enjoy a Chef’s Dinner designed, executed, and presented by Shaver and his team, featuring a dazzling array of his most exciting creations. The ten guests will begin with a cocktail reception in the foyer before sitting down in Hamiltons’ private dining suite, where Shaver will present them with a multi-course tasting menu, paired with wines and spirits selected just for the occasion. It’s a Chef’s Dinner for 10, with Risen Star Curtis Shaver.


Bidding for the Hamiltons’ auction ended on July 15, 2016.

Winning Bid: $2,600


hamiltons-at-first-main101 West Main Street . Charlottesville, VA . (434) 295-6649

Why Hamiltons’?

Some find a visit to Hamiltons’ is like a time warp to a “New American” restaurant of the 1980s or 1990s –  with its steady soundtrack of light jazz, brightly colored walls, and margaritas served in martini glasses. The menu includes standards like crabcakes and crème brûlée, and the signature blue plate special is even served on a blue, glossy plate.

But, it’s not just superficial similarities that Hamiltons’ shares with restaurants of the New American renaissance. It’s also the sense of professionalism and attention to detail that the era brought. And so, the butter with your bread is always room temperature, as it should be. And, the bread, itself, is warm, salty, yeasty, and perfect every time – the kind that seems to make you hungrier as it fills you up. Most importantly, the cooking is excellent. Owners Kate and Bill Hamilton know good food, and have always had a talented Chef de Cuisine, from Gail Hobbs-Page, to Jeanette Peabody, to Curtis Shaver, the former Duner’s sous chef who took over the kitchen in 2013 and was promptly named one of Charlottesville’s rising stars.

What to Order

Below is a list of our suggestions, the chef’s favorites, and appearances in Five Finds on Friday, where a local chef or personality has named a Hamiltons’ dish as one of the best in town. Our corned beef hash pick is from menu for Sunday brunch, which is a particularly good time to enjoy Hamiltons’.

Our Picks

  • Vegetarian Blue Plate Special
  • Crispy Cornmeal Dusted Calamari Salad
  • Carolina Shrimp Poached in Chardonnay and Lemon with Woodson’s Mill Creamy Grits
  • Pan Roasted Jumbo Lump Crabcake
  • Housemade Wagyu Corned Beef Hash
  • Sandwich Lab Sandwiches

Chef’s Picks

  • Grilled Romaine Caesar Salad
  • Chopped Romaine and Radicchio Salad with Fried Oysters
  • Housemade Pappardelle with Tomato Braised Lamb Ragu
  • Grilled Double H Farm Pork Chop
  • Arctic Char with Edamame Mash, sautéed Sharondale Farms Mushrooms, Blistered Cherry Tomatoes, and Charred Lemon Vinaigrette

Five Finds on Friday Picks

Five Finds on Friday: Hannah Moster


On Fridays, we feature five food finds from area chefs and personalities.  Today’s picks come from Hannah Moster, sous chef of Hamiltons’ at First & Main, who tomorrow morning is competing against five other top sous chefs in an Iron Chef competition at the Ciy Market, as part of the Tom Tom Founders Festival.  Moster’s picks:

1)  Dan Dan Noodles at Peter Chang’s.  “Never had anything there I didn’t love. The lunch specials Monday through Friday are a great deal, and the hot and sour soup is the best ever! If I don’t get a lunch special, I get a couple apps. I’m addicted to the Dan Dan noodles and hot and numbing shredded tofu skins.”

2)  Pulled Pork at The Barbeque Exchange.  “Best bbq around! Being so close to home, we should really eat there every day. Chef Hartman’s crew, headed up by superman Brooks Tanner, never fails to load us up a massive platter of porkliciousness.”

3)  Tasting Menu with Wine Pairings at Palladio Restaurant.  “I’ve always loved an afternoon of tasting at Barboursville. Luca Paschina’s style is right up my alley. Finish off the evening with a glass of wine and a picnic near the ruins, or if you’re lucky, a luxurious dinner of the tasting menu at Palladio.”

4)  Chicken Wings and PBR at Miller’s Downtown.  “Miller’s has everything! Pool, games, live music, upstairs sports bar and the biggest and best people-watching patio downtown. Fresh new renovation downstairs, but still the same old school style and feel. Huge draft beer selection, and that delicious food you crave. A favorite classic.”

5)  Pizza Margherita at Lampo.  “After the three years I spent living in Italy, it’s soooo great to get to have the real deal original pizza again. Thank you and much respect.”


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