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Tastings - A Restaurant, Wine Shop & Wine Bar
Tastings - A Restaurant, Wine Shop & Wine Bar
  • Address:
    502 East Market
    Charlottesville, VA 22902
    Neighborhood:
    Charlottesville
  • Cuisine:
    Contemporary American
    Price: $30 and under

Tastings - A Restaurant, Wine Shop & Wine Bar Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.tastingsofcville.com
  • Phone: (434) 293-3663
  • Hours of Operation: Lunch: Tuesday - Saturday: 11:30am - 2:30pm; Dinner: Wednesday - Saturday: 5:30pm - 9:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: Contemporary American
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Catering: Tastings does cater locally. Contact 434-293-3663 for a personal consultation or email Bill at billcurtis@tastingsofcville.com.

Getting there

  • Parking: Public Lot
A word from Tastings - A Restaurant, Wine Shop & Wine Bar
When Tastings started in 1990 it was the only fully integrated Wine Shop/ Wine Bar/ Restaurant on the East Coast. About twenty years later, there is still only a handful of establishments in the U.S. such as Tastings. Besides being an outstanding wine shop in its own right as well as a fine restaurant, Tastings offers a large selection of wines by the glass. Wines are offered in flights for experimentation with a meal for a modest fee over the retail price of wines in the shop. Tastings' restaurant serves simple, direct cuisine that allows each customer a gustatory and educational experience in a friendly but professional fine restaurant.Continued
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Diner Reviews
  • "Tastings is a favorite for us. Bill Curtis' wine pairings are always spot on."
    Dined on 7/26/2014
  • "This operation is run by real pros. Whether it is in the wine shop or in the kitchen, the result is terrific. The starting place is great food which is then matched by a wine cellar that doubles as the wine shop. As they sell for a margin of above the shop price, you have a great handle on the wine value. A learning experience as well in that the enthusiastic proprietor regales you in the reason that he selected the wine for the shop and for the meal."
    Dined on 7/17/2014
  • "An delightful surprise. Not being from the area I had modest expectations that were exceeded all around. The food was nothing short of perfect. The wine list includes the entire adjacent wine store. When I asked for a specific rather rare varietal, they had it. The friendliness of the staff compensated for the brief shortfalls. Pricing was very reasonable for the level of quality. This place should be full every night, yet paradoxically it wasn't even at half capacity. What is wrong with the people of Charlottesville? Get out and frequent this place!"
    Dined on 6/20/2014
  • "Wonderful choice for our graduation celebration. Food was excellent, especially the seafood choices- I had the grouper. great selection of wine (almost too many choices-so we took some home) and very helpful staff in pairing the wine with the food, owner was very gracious and entertaining "
    Dined on 5/16/2014
  • "A bit hidden a block off the downtown mall but enjoyed our dinner. Fried oysters as either appetizer or entree were great, as was the bison short rib. The crab casserole was excellent as well. Lots of specials for the night and parking at the garage next door was validated. "
    Dined on 4/25/2014
  • "The food and wine are outstanding, but it's the owner who makes this nook glow with particular warmth. A marvelous character who welcomes you into his home. Have dined at Tastings several times over the years and never been even MILDLY disappointed. EVER"
    Dined on 3/29/2014
  • "Tastings is a quirky little place with a real charm. We were greeted warmly and seated promptly. Service was friendly and prompt. The food focuses on outstanding ingredients and simple preparations that highlight the flavors without a hint of pretension. The mushroom soup was outstanding with a French onion soup base and black trumpet mushrooms. My wife's fried oysters were perfectly done. She had the mushroom plate for her entre, almost a vegetarian plate except for bacon included in one of the components. I had the medallions of leg of lamb. Both were great dishes with beautifully chosen side items. Best of all were the wine selections by the glass recommended by the sommelier -- perfect and not always obvious choices."
    Dined on 3/15/2014
  • "Fantastic wood - and a shocking selection of wines professionally selected with great taste by the owner. All around a superb dining experience in a relatively informal setting. Top choice in downtown Charlottesville."
    Dined on 1/18/2014
  • "I was intrigued with the comments about wine recommendations and the intimacy of the place...it was everything I had hoped...wine paired perfectly with food perfectly prepared....I will definitely be returning."
    Dined on 12/28/2013
  • "We really enjoyed the ambiance and combination of selecting wine from the retail shop to pair with our dinner. The staff was very friendly and helpful. The menu was very eclectic and ambitious, some of our selections were excellent some missed their mark. However it was an overall fun experience and we will return next time in Charlottesville."
    Dined on 11/30/2013
  • "As always - fabulous wine tasting to go with outstanding dishes. Great place, great service."
    Dined on 11/23/2013
  • "This is a small hole in the wall place with excellent food and a great wine selection. The owner will come to your table and suggest wine pairings that are right on the dot. No fuss, no attitude, just great wines and delicious food. We were very happy we came here during our weekend visit to Charlottesville."
    Dined on 11/9/2013
  • "Lots of good wine choices; we had four. Excellent wild mushroom entree and Sherwood Farms filet. Service was attentive and we had good conversations with long-time owner Bill."
    Dined on 10/26/2013
  • "I used reviews for restaurants in Charlottesville to find a place where the food was good and the atmosphere was one that would allow pleasant conversation. We hit the mark with Tastings! We had a lovely evening catching up with our college son and his friend. We never felt rushed and it was quiet enough for good conversation. The food was also very good and it was fun to talk to the owner about wine choices. We are not wine connosieurs and he never made us feel lesser than because we didn't know our wine. He genuinely wanted us to have a great experience and to help us find something we would like."
    Dined on 10/25/2013
  • "I made a reservation for 6. I came in 30min early to let them know we were going to be short a person, possibly two, but I was not for sure. Immediately, I was made to feel as though our group was an issue for them. Come 6:05 we had still not been seated and I had to ask him to seat us. The room was empty other than one table of 4. The menu was on a chalk board, which we could not see from our table. We had to get up and walk over to the board in order to choose our food. The staff was unfamiliar with the menu. I will say food was very good, no complaints there, but the overall experience was uncomfortable. We have so many great local restaurants around C-Ville where the food and service is excellent. This is not one of them."
    Dined on 10/19/2013
  • "We met another couple coming from an hour on the other side of Charlottesville. We gave our sommelier a taste range and a price range, and he served us to two different and equally satisfying reds. The menu was diverse, and we ordered accordingly. All meals were wonderful - meats, seafood, sides, appetizers. The servings were more than ample. We agreed that we would all eat and drink there again."
    Dined on 8/29/2013
  • "Tastings is a regular for us due to the exceptional wine flights and knowledge of the owner about wine. The food is reliably good, but was exceptionally tasty tonight. Service, which can vary in friendliness and efficiency was high on both. Great place to pick a flight and ask Bill (owner) or waiter/waitress to suggest food to go with it. You will enjoy the adventure and maybe learn some new and interesting food and wine information"
    Dined on 8/24/2013
  • "Excellent food with an impressive array of fine wines which the owner will help you select to complement your food."
    Dined on 8/22/2013
  • "We have been coming to Tastings for 20+ years and have never been disappointed in the food. As wine lovers, we feel this is the perfect place to dine and be able to pick from anything in the wine shop. We live in another state and come to Charlottesville for dining and visiting wineries."
    Dined on 4/26/2013
  • "This place has hung on a long time, in a town with many fine restaurants, yet has not flagged a bit in quality. It is just such a pleasant place to eat."
    Dined on 3/2/2013
  • "This was our first visit. The food and service was superb; my husband said it was the best duck he'd ever had and my guinea hen was very tasty. Although we were pleased with the service and food, I was a little disappointed with the atmosphere (a little too quiet)and the dated feel of the restaurant."
    Dined on 2/9/2013
  • "This restaurant is located in a wine shop so of course the wine was spectacular! That was my favorite part of the meal. The owner picked several wines to make into a flight and then told us what they were after we had tasted them and picked our favorites. All were very good. The dinner itself was a little disappointing to me. They had run out of a few options and it's already a limited menu to start. Also, I felt like I've had better food at other restaurants. We were the only ones dining here on a Saturday night, which did seem a little strange. I would return for the wine but not necessarily the food."
    Dined on 1/5/2013
  • "I loved the atmosphere--local wine appearing on the wine list, local produce and local meats included in the menu's dishes, local paintings on the wall. The service was exceptional, luckily due to my good fortune of eating at a time when it was completely empty. The service was timely and gracious, and reminded me of a cozy family dinner. The staff was informed and welcoming, shared in friendly banter with my overbearing father and provided helpful guidance. Do not let the empty restaurant fool you, this place is fantastic. I particularly enjoyed the Grouper and the Skirt Steak. Tasting's is easily one of Charlottesville's hidden gems, tucked away in a wine shop on the backside of the Downtown Mall."
    Dined on 10/19/2012
  • "What an unexpected delight to find Tastings and Bill Curtis in Charlottesville! We had read he knew his wines, but were still unprepared for the exceptional experience we had at his restaurant and wine bar. Let's just say this: Bill IS the wine list! He finds out what you are eating and what you like and then produces half glasses paired perfectly with the dishes. He won't tell you what you're drinking until you've tasted and he is spot on! The prices were reasonable, the food delicious and the whole evening completely memorable. Book now!"
    Dined on 10/5/2012
  • "Tastings is a combination wine shop and restaurant run by a guy who loves food and wine. He cooks what he likes, using the best available ingredients (often local), and, rather than a wine list, you can choose any bottle from the conprehensive collection in the store (for a small service surcharge), or choose from a wide variety of flights and/or wines by the glass. It's not a fancy restaurant, but the menu always includes items that that aren't common for a small town bistro: fresh morels and chanterelles, wild boar, quail, confit with cassoulet, shad roe, etc. Only issue is that the staff is small, and the place can get overwhelmed (and slow) if there is a large crowd."
    Dined on 6/23/2012
  • "Very good food and the sommelier did a very good job with wine pairings."
    Dined on 6/2/2012
  • "What an odd restaurant. We entered through a wine shop where guests were sitting around at the bar. We had to wander around to figure out that there was an actual restaurant attached to the wine shop. The food and wine were mediocre. My daughter and I chose to drink a flight of wines recommended by the restaurant owner and didn't really like any of them. There wasn't a wine list to choose from which I also found odd. The highlight of the entire meal was the olive oil and the bread."
    Dined on 5/11/2012
  • "Great place for quiet night out for mom and dad, or special celebration. Service first class, food wonderful, and the wine...well it's in a wine store, so I need say no more. Staff very knowledgeable with reliable recommendations. We were visiting from out of town, but would return in a heartbeat. Try this!"
    Dined on 4/14/2012
  • "We had a wonderful afternoon at Tastings. The food was wonderful and the wine choices were outstanding. No one rushed us and we could still be sitting there and it would be fine with the employees! All of this and the prices were more than reasonable. A great place to spend a Saturday afternoon with friends!"
    Dined on 3/24/2012
  • "This is the real deal: from Wine to app to entrees to dessert. The soups are unbelievable - get the Lobster Bisque and "mushroom" soup, though the mushroom soup is more like a french onion with mushrooms (best I've ever had!). Apps are outstanding. If you like wine, you are in the right place. You can choose from flights of wine or pick your own from the retail wine shop on the premises (actually enhances atmosphere) for a moderate corkage fee of $7. Good selection, especially french wines. Entrees outstanding but can be a little pricey, however definitely worth the money. Tastings is about a lot more than just wine, and you will experience that when you taste the chef cooked food. Highly Recommended, especially if you love wine."
    Dined on 1/7/2012
  • "If you're looking for a place to shop for wine and also have dinner with a flight of wine, this is your place. The wine store staff is very knowledgeable and will assist you in picking the pefect wines to go with your meal. As for the restaurant and food, there are some issues. The duck breast was very fatty (not rendered as well as could be) and the veal loin chop also was excessivlely fatty (about 1/3 of the serving was fat). But the flavors are good and there is potential. I suspect the specials of the day would have been a better way to go. The night we were there it was practically empty. If you're looking for a quiet place to dine with good wine, that makes it a good thing. But a lack of patrons also may mean mediocre meals."
    Dined on 12/17/2011
  • "On a weekend visit to Charlottesville, we were looking for a place that had a great wine list and great food. When I stumbled upon Tastings (through Trip Advisor) I was thrilled with the description! We ate there on Friday evening and loved it so much we returned on Saturday evening with our guests! The service was excellent, our server was excellent at asking questions to help him choose the perfect wines for our meals. The wines and the menu were not "run of the mill" but were not so unusual to make you uncomfortable. Highly recommended! (Don't forget to get your parking garage ticket stamped at the restaurant.)"
    Dined on 11/26/2011
  • "good food with variety and very interesting feature dishes"
    Dined on 11/11/2011
  • "Good French country food in a wine store--$7 corkage charge, so slurge on a great bottle of wine to go with your cassolet, fish or meat!"
    Dined on 10/22/2011
  • "While visiting son at UVA we arranged to dine here on friday night and everything was perfect. Food was interesting and delicious. Wine selections were off the charts, so some help was requested -- I wanted a Viriginia red with dinner - and the perfect red was presented and enjoyed. Could not have been happier with the evening."
    Dined on 10/21/2011
  • "What an absolutely great evening! We will certainly be back!"
    Dined on 10/8/2011
  • "The second best lobster bisque of my life (#1 in Nantucket - hard to beat) and scrumptious duck confit en cassoulet. The restaurant is on one side of a well-stocked wine shop and our sommelier picked the perfect Chateauneuf-du-Pape to go with our meal. Very comfortable and intimate ambiance and our waitress was attentive, friendly and knowledgable. Lovely experience. Will return if we get the chance."
    Dined on 9/30/2011
  • "The wine knowledge of the staff is excellent. The food was fabulous and the 'share' option for an additional $5 which included a salad was just the perfect portion for both, espcecially if you add soup or an appetizer. The muchroom soup is like French Onion on crack - which equates to AMAZING. Overall we loved the restaurant, the service, experience and romantic setting."
    Dined on 9/24/2011
  • "Tastings is one of my favorite restaurants in Charlottesville. The food is excellent French bistro-style fare and the wine list is superb. Especially noteworthy is the fact that you can pair flights of wines with the meal."
    Dined on 5/28/2011
  • "If what you want is a large menu to suit every taste then look somewhere else. The food isn't your everyday fare but it is delicious and well presented. Most notable is the extensive wine selection and staff to assist you in choosing wine to compliment the dinner or just to sample for fun. A friend and I dined on a Saturday night and the restaurant was about half full. Atmosphere is nice-casual, intimate, fun but not noisy, subdued lighting. Wouldn't recommend families (kids). The staff were personable and enjoyed visiting with the customers as well as being accommodating."
    Dined on 5/7/2011