Helen's

4.4
290 reviews
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$30 and under
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Contemporary American
Helen's Restaurant is located in the heart of Richmond, serving brunch and dinner. We hope you enjoy Helenʼs Southern gothic history and our nouveau southern cuisine.
What 290 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.4based on recent ratings
4.5
food
4.3
service
4.4
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Moderate
98% of people would recommend it to a friend
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CG
Richmond
2 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 4

Menu is limited, so you expect perfection in what they present. We ordered scallops and my wife made the mistake of saying she liked hers a little extra done. What we ended up with was burnt scallops. We were very disappointed and likely will not return

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L
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on March 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Delightful as always! Creative and delicious food, great service, and a cool atmosphere.

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SF
Richmond
16 reviews
Dined on March 9, 2019
Overall 2food 3service 1ambience 4

This was my first disappointing experience at Helen’s. It took approximately 15 minutes after we were seated for someone to come over and greet us, and the restaurant had just opened, so they weren’t packed. When the food arrived, it was over cooked (two burgers, the medium well arrived burnt, the medium rare arrived medium well.) We ended up throwing away more than we ate. Overall, just a bad experience, and as I stated it was a first for Helen’s.

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RH
Richmond
8 reviews
Dined on March 8, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

The food was excellent. Wonderful flavor and presentation. I had the NY strip. Generous portion. Cooked to perfection. Brussel sprouts and a savory tartine. I shared some with my friend. I had one of his scallops which had a buttery taste. Very pleasing. Only four scallops was a little of a disappointment since they were so good. Just a note of warning. Finding a place to park on a Friday night is nigh on impossible. I dropped my friend off, and then scoured the neighborhood for the next fifteen minutes. You might wasn't to Uber.

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NK
Charleston
20 reviews
Dined on March 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The dood was amazing. We started with a cauliflower special that was outstanding. We had the Helen’s burger, which was perfect—slightly charred on the outside and juicy on the inside. We also had the sautéed calamari, which was delicious. Our server was fun, knowledgeable, and attentive. We will definitely be back.

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CS
Richmond
1 review
Dined on March 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

A neighborhood gem in the Fan! I had the best shrimp and grits I've found anywhere north of Savannah, and two members of our party had rockfish served on a mixture of finely chopped veggies, seafood, and spices - they literally wiped every bite off their plates at the end with bread to make sure they didn't miss a drop. Service was quick, very friendly, and with just the right amount of attention. The calamari appetizer is superb, but beware if you're not a fan of spices, because it is quite zesty! We will definitely return to Helen's - can't wait to see what's on the menu next time.

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E
Richmond
10 reviews
Dined on March 2, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 5

Classic Fan restaurant. The mussels in Pernod for an appetizer......exceptional flavor.

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WC
1 review
Dined on February 26, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Excellent small plates. Home-made soup was excellent, as were the mussels.

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h
Richmond
11 reviews
Dined on February 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

always great ... good service and wonderful food ... always a good selection of entrees

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OT
Richmond
3 reviews
Dined on February 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Hellen’s is our go to place especially since we love 4 blocks away! Note to self: if going to dinner for everyday dining with out -of -town friends expect higher $$ menu if Valentine’s Day is the day before.

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E
Richmond
2 reviews
Dined on February 15, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

This was our third time here in as many months. The young cooks are creative and the food is interesting and occasionally inspiring. One of the dishes led me, the following night, to produce something in a similar style which was also very good. We will be back!

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JN
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on February 9, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 3

This is not for kids. I brought my teenagers here and there were not great options. Certainly no kids menus but I don't think that is what they are going for. Me and my husband, YES! my kids, No.

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LR
Richmond
5 reviews
Dined on February 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Love the way they serve calamari! Lots of thinly sliced rings with garlic and slivered bell pepper. The cooks seem to really enjoy what they are doing and it tastes like it!

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KF
1 review
Dined on February 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Delightful evening with a friend. The sauteed calamari was amazing, as well as the roasted cauliflower. I ordered the rockfish and was able to swap out the bed of rice with butternut squash puree to suit my Paleo needs. Great combination!

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M
Richmond
2 reviews
Dined on January 30, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Reservations for 4 were at 6:30 and we were seated promptly. Claire delivered our Barbera d'Alba as we pondered over the menu and specials. We all agreed that the Shrimp and Grits (see photo) was perfection as was the pork special, followed by a brûlée that you just won't want to miss. Service was prompt, friendly and courteous.

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CJ
Richmond
4 reviews
Dined on January 30, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

This was my third visit, I love bringing people to this little gem. The food you get far exceeds the expectations you have going in.

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NA
Washington DC
8 reviews
Dined on January 26, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had divine mussels, gnocchi, and creme brulee. The cocktails were interesting and tasty. Great vibe, friendly service, good music that was not so loud you couldn't carry on a conversation at normal volume. We were visiting Richmond for the first time and the waitress gave us lots of great recommendations of things to do and places for meals.

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DT
Richmond
6 reviews
Dined on January 26, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Helens has always been a favorite for my wife and I. The food is excellent and the staff is always friendly and attentive. I highly recommend.

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JK
Richmond
1 review
Dined on January 26, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 4

Our entrees were great we had the shrimp and grits and the rockfish and both were great. Service was a little off but overall very good experience

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T
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on January 18, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

My friend and I both had the special which was a pork shank with a sauce to die for. Brussel sprouts were cooked perfectly service was great and we could hear each other!!! we both just loved it

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BH
Richmond
1 review
Dined on January 11, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 4ambience 4

Food was cold & this is the second time it’s happened. We won’t be going again :-(

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G
Richmond
27 reviews
Dined on January 11, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 3

Overall food, service, and seating was very good. We like going back. For this most recent visit my spouse's ribeye was not up to Helen's standards--it was just moderately tough. The creme brulee dessert was excellent!!!

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L
Richmond
121 reviews
Dined on January 10, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Burgers and Brunch are my fave at Helen's. Brunch is amazing and very fresh. I tried the crabmeat eggs benedict and don't want to go anywhere else for a benedict. The burgers are very good, especially with bacon onion marmalade to top it off!

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TS
Richmond
6 reviews
Dined on January 4, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

We really enjoyed our evening at Helen's. I enjoyed a well made Old Fashioned while perusing the menu, deciding on the special of the night which was apple cider braised pork shank served over polenta with roasted sprouts. The pork was fall apart tender and the sides delicious. The ambiance is cozy and just as we remembered from the Helen's of years ago, Christmas decorations made it even better! We sat at a booth and enjoyed friendly and attentive service. We will definitely go back!

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BK
Richmond
2 reviews
Dined on January 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Never disappointed with Helen’s. This has become “our” place to go for special occasions. We’ve never had a meal that either of us wouldn’t order again.

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OT
Caribbean
9 reviews
Dined on December 31, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Food was very good and service was great. Ambiance was nice and not too noisy

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R
Richmond
31 reviews
Dined on December 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

A perfect evening. The food was amazing. I had the Butternut Squash soup and the scallops. A perfectly sized meal. The seasonings were unusual and delicious.

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P
Richmond
11 reviews
Dined on December 29, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

You can't fake an old restaurant and this is an old restaurant, with the right feel. BUT, it has modern food, and good modern food, at that. Helen's doesn't focus on beer, unlike the 3,408 other places in town that serve beer. That is not a complaint.

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E
Richmond
3 reviews
Dined on December 20, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 3

We went with my wife for an early meal on a rainy Thursday evening so the place was relatively quiet which suits us fine. It is casual with an open kitchen. Food was creative and excellent. Nice selection of small plates.

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S
1 review
Dined on December 8, 2018
Overall 3food 5service 2ambience 3

The shrimp and grits was the best I've ever eaten. But the meals were expensive and no bread or salad included. The waitress did not ask us if we wanted an appetizer, and she never asked me if I wanted another drink though she asked the two men at our table twice. the waitress brought our bill without asking if we were ready and then said she couldn't use our coupon if we split the bill. she worked it out, but it felt like she wanted us to hurry and leave even though our bill for 4 people was almost $200. I probably won't plan to go back.

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RF
Richmond
19 reviews
Dined on December 7, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Love Helens but thought the new menu was a downgrade from the former one - and the Rockfish dish we ordered, while good, was not as tasty as the cobia dish that was on the former menu.

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RA
1 review
Dined on November 27, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 2

Lost its bistro cache. Food still good but very short menu. Gone over the top bohemian.
Ray Anderson
Williamsburg

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RV
Richmond
31 reviews
Dined on November 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Helen's is and always has been spot-on. Richmond is at its best with Helen's. It is a true G-E-M and we are always amazed with the specials and the standards. This is were we bring our friends and this is were we come for our romantic special spot.

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h
Richmond
12 reviews
Dined on November 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great as always. Good menu with great food. Try it, you'll love it.

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D
Richmond
10 reviews
Dined on November 17, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 5ambience 3

Service was A++. I like the cozy/intimate atmosphere of Helens. I was not impressed with any of the food we ordered. Started with the sweet potato soup (special of the day). It was alright...had a hint of heat and sweetness. But it was just that one note at the beginning with no follow up. For entrees we had the duck and pork chop. Both were cooked well and a good size portion. Where it failed was that everything was sweet, crust on pork chop was sweet, glaze on duck was sweet, celery root purée was sweet. I appreciate some sweetness to a meal. But this just seemed like sugar was in every part of the dish. It really needed balanced out with savory and/or spicy. I do t dissuade people from going to Helens. I just hope the kitchen and chef get the message that they can tone down their sugar scoop and it will greatly enhance the food.

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h
Richmond
12 reviews
Dined on November 17, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

great as always - never disappoint - creative entrees

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HE
1 review
Dined on November 16, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 3

Twenty plus years ago I was visiting Richmond and stumbled on Helen's and just loved, loved it .. the food was so scrumptious and we were treated like VIPs

So I finally got back last Friday and you lived up to my memories

My brother in law said it was the best steak he ever had. My sister enjoyed the duck and I had the very tasty scallops

Hope it isnt another 20 years!

Let me know if you open a restaurant in Las Vegas or Wisconsin

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BK
Richmond
2 reviews
Dined on November 9, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 3ambience 4

We were disappointed by the selections for dinner. We had been there 2 other times and enjoyed it very much.

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C
Richmond
1 review
Dined on November 9, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was my first visit and I loved it. Every dish we tried was delicious: the mussels, carrots, and shrimp & grits. I’d order it again!!

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TM
Richmond
13 reviews
Dined on November 7, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

Food quality has went down and service was ok but the prices were high for what we ordered here

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