The Charlottesville 29

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

Tag: The Clifton Inn

The Clifton Inn Auction


Here is your chance to experience The Clifton Inn 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, The Clifton Inn has created a signature experience available to whoever pledges the highest donation to The Blue Ridge Area Food Bank. Thanks to the generosity of the The Clifton Inn, 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, $2,000 would mean not just a wonderful meal for the winner and their guests, but also 8,000 more meals for the area’s hungry.

The Clifton Inn signature experience for The Charlottesville 29 Restaurant Auctions:

Cooking Class and Overnight Stay

The kitchen of The Clifton Inn has trained more of our area’s top chefs than any other in the area. Chefs who have cooked at The Clifton Inn have gone on to run restaurants like the C&O, Maya, Brookville, Palladio, The BBQ Exchange, and more. Here is your chance to learn in the the same kitchen that trained all of those great chefs.

The auction winner and three guests (ideally, two couples) will enjoy a personal, hands-on cooking class from the Clifton Inn’s Executive Chef and Pastry Chef. First, they will work on savory courses with Executive Chef Yannick Fayolle, as they help to prepare a custom menu with Fayolle, paired with wines.  Next comes dessert with the Pastry Chef, with more wine. After all that cooking, eating, and drinking, the lucky students will not have to go far to rest, as the auction prize includes an overnight stay in two of the inn’s beautiful rooms.

Note: The auction winner will schedule their class and stay on a mutually convenient Sunday through Thursday, subject to availability.


Bidding for The Clifton Inn Auction closed on June 29, 2016.

Winning Bid: $1,400

The Clifton Inn

Clifton1296 Clifton Inn Drive . Charlottesville, VA . (434) 971-1800

Why The Clifton Inn?

No kitchen has trained more of Charlottesville’s top chefs than The Clifton Inn’s.  One former chef owns the C&O. Another co-owns Maya, while another founded The BBQ Exchange. And, others are scattered among the kitchens of great Charlottesville restaurants. It’s no wonder because, for twenty-five years, The Clifton Inn has been one of the area’s top fine dining destinations.

From the professional service, to the elegant and historic setting, to the stellar wine list, The Clifton Inn has become synonymous with special occasion dining. But, the star of the show is the food.  While the men and women who have served as The Clifton Inn’s Executive Chef over the years have varied in style and approach, they have all shared one thing: exceptional talent.  This is no less true of current chef Yannick Fayolle, who took over in 2015 and has continued the inn’s recent trend towards more progressive cuisine.  Whether for a drink on the beautiful verandah or an over-the-top meal, The Clifton Inn is Charlottesville’s signature destination for a luxurious night out.

What to Order

The most exciting place to dine at The Clifton Inn is the Chef’s Counter, a seven-seat marble bar inside the kitchen, with a front row view of all of the action.  There, the chefs themselves will serve a multi-course extravaganza of tastes of their favorite dishes, while chatting with the guests. As for the regular menu, it changes so often that specific dishes may be less helpful than suggested categories. Below is a list of our suggestions, the chef’s own favorites, and appearances in Five Finds on Friday, where a local chef or personality has named a Clifton Inn dish or experience as one of the best in town.

Our Picks

  • Chef’s Counter
  • Barrel-aged Cocktails

Chef’s Picks

  • Ramen with traditional dashi, pickles, quail Egg, and house kimchi
  • French Kabosha Squash Cassoulet with Mt. Torrey Farm quail, bacon powder, and roasted beets
  • Reconstructed Duck Egg in Hay Nest, with layers of garlic purée, lemon meringue, and a soy cured yolk, topped with iSi hollandaise and sturgeon caviar
  • Colorado Lamb Rack with fig and jarrahdale squash mostarda, coriander dust, charred shallots, lamb jus, fig gelee and young sorrel

Five Finds on Friday Picks


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