Hamiltons' At First & Main

4.6
761 reviews
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$30 and under
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Contemporary American
Contemporary Fine Dining in Charlottesville, Virginia Located in the heart of Charlottesville’s Downtown district, Hamiltons’ is the perfect spot for a delicious afternoon lunch or a romantic evening dinner. A cheerful, cozy atmosphere and attentive service ensure our guests enjoy an outstanding dining experience, be they Charlottesville natives, out-of-town visitors, or University students and staff. We also feature outdoor patio seating seasonally, providing our guests the opportunity to dine amidst the bustle of the Downtown Mall.
What 761 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.6based on recent ratings
4.6
food
4.7
service
4.5
ambience
4.4
value
Noise · Moderate
95% of people would recommend it to a friend
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p
Richmond
4 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 4

Best thing was the specialty drinks. The food is always very good, but I felt the quantity of the main course was skimpy this time. I had flounder, but the portion was very small, about 7-8 bites for $27 was disappointing. I was not full, despite a bowl of soup for appetizer. I've dined here many times, but the last two visits were not up to the previous times.

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D
1 review
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 3

Wonderful evening--glad we chose it for our celebration. Logan (waitstaff) was on top of things and really added to our great impression of Hamilton's.

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CS
1 review
Dined on May 18, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was the perfect venue to celebrate my daughter's graduation from UVA.

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K
New York Area
13 reviews
Dined on May 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

We love this place. The food is great and we love to sit on the downtown mall. Service was very friendly. We will continue to come here for birthday lunches etc.

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KE
Richmond
1 review
Dined on May 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Delicious food, relatively quiet so able to enjoy our conversation, server was knowledgeable and pleasant, overall a great dining experience!

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DG
New York Area
12 reviews
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a fabulous Mother’s Day brunch at Hamilton’s. It was a prize fixe 3 course meal that was pricey but the food was fantastic- first quality (all 5 of us raved about our food) and the service was impeccable! We will go back and highly recommend Hamilton’s.

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OT
Richmond
4 reviews
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 3

Appetizers were all good, the salad was a bit underdressed but that was resolved. Great corned beef brisket, the best we’ve had ever, the other 3 entrees ordered were OK but not exceptional, the sides were quite nice. Deserts were a disappointment, only the champagne mousse was worth finishing. Service was decently speedy, but a bit haphazard in execution. While it was a busy weekend, a 30 minute wait with reservations was a little long without acknowledgement. Overall a nice restaurant, with at least 1 exceptional item on the menu, and that item was exceptional.

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m
Richmond
1 review
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderful mother’s day brunch. Food was perfect and service excellent

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D
Richmond
22 reviews
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

We had Mother’s Day brunch and enjoyed our experience. It was a pre fix menu and the choices were good. Smoked salmon starter was delicious as was the spring risotto with poached egg. My husband’s waffle was not great, it was very basic with an icing drizzle and fresh fruit. He thought it was reheated. Overall nice experience but pricey. Obviously with the 10.3% sales and food tax in CVL, a dining bill gets up there quickly.

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J
San Diego
5 reviews
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 1food 4service 3ambience 3

We went for mothers day brunch. Price for brunch more expensive than advertised when type in Hamilton mother day brunch. The senior manager was rude and arrogant. She was extremely unprofessional and should be fired. Do not go to an establishment that treats customers this way.

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JI
1 review
Dined on May 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always reliable for fine dining and ambience. Cocktails are superb.

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JP
Greensboro
8 reviews
Dined on May 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent evening delicious, creative prepared food, well paced , pleasant service. Just a lovely evening. We had both the Shrimp and grits and crabcakes, and chicken and lentils. All excellent as were scallop, octopus and Caesar salad appetizers.

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GP
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on May 11, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

My wife and I came here with my parents and in-laws for lunch. The gnocchi was perfectly cooked and the sauce was wonderfully creamy. We appreciate the staff’s patience with our immigrant fathers fighting over paying for the check!

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OS
Wilmington
1 review
Dined on May 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

First visit to Charlottesville

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E
Washington DC
9 reviews
Dined on May 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We were a party of four, and the weather was great so we could dine outside on the Mall. We had glasses of wine, very refreshing rosé, and then the duck, the shrimp and grits, and two of us split the crab cakes. For dessert we had sorbets and chocolate many ways and a split order of the almond rhubarb tart. Everything was just perfect. The service was attentive and professional, the food was delicious, and the ambience was terrific. There have been times when dining indoors was too noisy, but this was perfect for us.

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Q
Savannah
35 reviews
Dined on May 3, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 3

The food and service at Hamilton’s is outstanding. It is an attractive restaurant and the experience should be nearly perfect but it isn’t. The reason is that it’s just too noisy. There were only 3 or 4 couples or foursomes dining but there was a table of 10 seated in the center of the restaurant. Even though we were seated in a nice booth, we could not converse across the table because we couldn’t hear each other. It’s a shame to have such great service and food ruined by noise. I would recommend it for the food and service but for a romantic evening or even a business meeting where the parties needed to hear each other talk, I would rule it out.

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T
Western NC
3 reviews
Dined on May 2, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Hamilton's is a long-time Charlottesville restaurant, an 'institution' and there is a reason it's been around so long! Having one of the best spots on the Downtown Mall, it's a light-filled space with gorgeous blue glassware as its main decor. The service was impeccable, and our pimento cheese hushpuppies were divine!! I will say that the shrimp and grits were amazingly delicious however the grits portion of the dish were warm at best. My friend and I both had the same dish, and we concurred that the grits were not warm. Other than this, we enjoyed our lunch and of course we will return to Hamilton's. I've eaten there many times and always leave satisfied and excited to return.

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JR
Atlanta
7 reviews
Dined on April 30, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

Very nondescript. The menu was sparse and so was the patronage. Perhaps because of that, the service was good.

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j
Western NC
7 reviews
Dined on April 30, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Awesome as always. Daniel, the bartender is first rate!

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s
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on April 27, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 4

We sat outside on a very nice night, but our conversation was drowned out by the patrons of other restaurants who also sit outside and whose seating area butts up immediately next to you. So you may be dining at Hamilton's but you're sitting next to people who've come to enjoy a night out at Hooters...for and extreme example. And the outdoor seating allows smoking, or people were smoking at least....so keep that in mind. Service was so so, we ordered apps, salads and an entree, which were all pretty good, but the amount of time in between each was just too long especially for not being particularly busy. Don't know if they were sitting in the window, or the kitchen was slow. Once we got them they were pretty good. If you're only around for a night, there's better options.

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OT
Richmond
1 review
Dined on April 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Ate outdoors and took in the ambiance of the Downtown Mall. We’ve eaten at Hamilton’s several times and always know it will be top shelf

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I
Richmond
5 reviews
Dined on April 25, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

The food was tasty but the portions were small.

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ZJ
Chicago
1 review
Dined on April 24, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 3

The food was very good, as was the service. However, the noise level was very high and made conversation difficult.

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C
Raleigh
9 reviews
Dined on April 24, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Delicious. We sat outside and not noise level was very low. Pretty loud in the restaurant proper. Interesting wines as well

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MD
Nashville
2 reviews
Dined on April 21, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Easter Sunday brunch, 3 courses, great choices

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OT
Baltimore
2 reviews
Dined on April 21, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

We went for Easter brunch prix fix menu. The dishes were creative but fell flat for us with flavor and quality especially considering the high cost. I would be interested to see how their regular menu compares, maybe we would be more impressed.

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l
Puerto Vallarta
10 reviews
Dined on April 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Without a doubt one of the best meals we’ve ever had...anywhere in the world. Our server, Chris, was wonderful and gave us great recommendations. My shrimp and grits was so delicious I could have licked my plate. Chef does this amazing thing with tomatoes smoked over wood chips that takes the dish to a new level. This would be our go to restaurant if we lived in Charlottesville!

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JS
Chicago
12 reviews
Dined on April 19, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Excellent in all ways

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DJ
Houston
24 reviews
Dined on April 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We went there for lunch visiting family from around the country. Everyone was very satisfied with there meals. The fried oyster salad was tremendous and so was the crab cakes.

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OT
Seattle
1 review
Dined on April 14, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

The smoked tomatoes put my shrimp and grits on the next level. Nicely done.

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CO
1 review
Dined on April 13, 2019
Overall 2food 4service 4ambience 4

The problem was that we were in the restaurant for about 65 minutes before our meal was delivered. We had a 6:30 pm reservation and an 8:00 pm time for a show at the Paramont Theater. We really had to rush to finish out meal so that we could make the theater on time. On the other hand, our sever was great.

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SD
Denver
82 reviews
Dined on April 12, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

We would return. Amy, I think, was our server and she was excellent. Crab cake and shrimp and grits were very good. My son loved his Cuban sammie. Everything was god! Positive first experience

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AB
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on April 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Lunch in the garden was lovely. Food delicious and service pleasant. It was not my first and not the last time at Hamilton's.

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L
1 review
Dined on April 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

A perfect spot for a reunion of old friends! Great food, wonderful service, and the perfect atmosphere where we could catch up.

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d
Philadelphia
8 reviews
Dined on April 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

GREAT FOOD! And service too! We sat outside and enjoyed pork chops, shrimp, scallops and all dishes has delicious sides!! Wine and beer were very good!! Loved it here.

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MC
Richmond
1 review
Dined on April 5, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 2

Yes but way too loud. Would probably not be back for that reason

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OT
Charlotte
3 reviews
Dined on April 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always excellent. Love the crab cakes which are of the regional type. Lots of crab, very little filler. Get the rum cocktail made from rum stuck in the corner with vanilla beans and then brought out to make this delicious beverage.

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DF
New England
1 review
Dined on April 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food and the servers at Hamilton's is always GREAT.
Love the place.

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CE
Baltimore
10 reviews
Dined on March 31, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

We went for brunch and we all LOVED our food. It was a great choice!

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HH
1 review
Dined on March 30, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food and service. Staff very accommodating and answered all questions. Food all fresh and love that the menu changes with availability.

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