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Colonial Williamsburg Dining

bhein Jan 19, 2010 08:43 AM

Has anyone been to the various historic Inns at Colonial Williamsburg? Are they more theme park than serious restaurant? If so, any recommendations elsewhere in Williamsburg?

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  1. s
    Steve RE: bhein Jan 19, 2010 09:17 AM

    They serve some surprisingly good food. I'd avoid the one dedicated to seafood, though. They all have peanut soup that is the envy of anywhere else. Steaks are a really good choice. All in all, they represent good value despite the elevated prices. There is also an informal tavern (no reservations, I think) which has very good Brunswick Stew, IIRC.

    3 Replies
    1. re: Steve
      Steve RE: Steve Jan 19, 2010 10:12 AM

      I just checked the menus again. King's Arm is the one I'd recommend because of the peanut soup and the prime rib. Christiana Campbell's is the seafood place I would avoid.
      Chowning Tavern has the Brunswick Stew. The other Colonial tavern is Shield's.

      The Inns have modern, not Colonial menus.

      1. re: Steve
        flavrmeistr RE: Steve Jan 19, 2010 10:42 AM

        Chownings has an okay pulled pork sandwich. It's mostly about the entertainment, which is pretty good with a few cocktails.

        1. re: Steve
          msal3 RE: Steve Jan 19, 2010 11:19 AM

          King's Arm has very good fried chicken.

      2. c
        chefdilettante RE: bhein Jan 19, 2010 09:24 AM

        Two great restaurants in Williamsburg: The Fat Canary and the Blue Talon.

        Re: The Regency Room at the Williamsburg Inn--the jacket-required policy and live music promise a night of old-school elegance but the empty dining room, nearly inedible food, and contempt-earning wine list make the night anything but.

        1. w
          weezycom RE: bhein Jan 19, 2010 10:30 AM

          I would check the South board for current recs, but The Trellis was a reliable upscale place some years ago.

          1. chaofun RE: bhein Jan 19, 2010 01:27 PM

            Yes, you should def go to Pierce's Pitt BBQ. IMHO, its some of the best BBQ in Va.

            1. b
              bhein RE: bhein Jan 19, 2010 02:40 PM

              Thank you! I think I'm leaning toward King's Arm. Peanut soup?!? Never had it, but man am I going to give it a try.

              2 Replies
              1. re: bhein
                ivysmom RE: bhein Jan 19, 2010 03:45 PM

                Peanut soup is definitely worth a try! And spoon bread. We haven't been in a while, but ate at Trellis the last time and enjoyed it quite a bit. Lunch at Chownings. it was ok. Pulled pork was decent, as flavrmeister noted. We tend to eat lunch on Colonial Williamsburg grounds and dinners in town somewhere.

                1. re: bhein
                  Steve RE: bhein Jan 19, 2010 05:15 PM

                  Peanut soup is very traditional Virginia cooking. I've had it at a few places in the countryside, but nowhere nearly as good as King's Arm.

                2. Meg RE: bhein Jan 20, 2010 06:27 PM

                  Of all the historic restaurants in the colonial area, Kings Arms is the best, and I speak from recent experience. It's better than it's been in years. And by no means theme parkish. For fine dining - the Fat Canary and for great casual fare the Blue Talon Bistro (both in Merchant's Square). The bar at the Williamsburg Inn is nice, but wouldn't recommend dining there. If you want other recs (outside of the colonial area) search the board for posts from last year. I remember writing several! Enjoy and please report back.

                  1. MsDiPesto RE: bhein Jan 20, 2010 06:38 PM

                    I don't think this meets your "historic" definition, but Trellis was very good last time I was there, but that was several years ago.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: MsDiPesto
                      Meg RE: MsDiPesto Feb 11, 2010 10:05 AM

                      The Trellis is in the process of being taken over by new management - that of the Blue Talon Bistro. The expectation in town is high.

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