My wife and I will be having a weekend in Charlottesville area soon.
Which place(s) in town do foodies gravitate to?
We like seafood, eclectic, atmosphere, wine.
In no particular order and all over the map in terms of price and level, but all really, really good:
Tavola for Italian, no reservations so show up right when they open but the food is outstanding and the place started as a wine shop and they're still as good as it gets for wine.
Ace Biscuit and Barbecue for breakfast and lunch...exactly what the sign says, amazing biscuits and great barbecue and lots of other fun stuff like chicken and waffles.
The Alley Light for funky, fun, throwback atmosphere and lovely French food.
Pasture for regional cuisine in a really casual setting. Things like house made pimento cheese with Ritz crackers. Good bar with really creative cocktails.
La Michoacana Deli for tacos.
Main Street Market for food related shopping, lunches, takeout sushi from the fish market (it's really good and couldn't be better fish), and Orzo (Mediterranean food) for lunch or dinner. Really good stuff to be found all over the Market.
I agree that Main Street Market is worth a visit. Feast is a gourmet food shop similar to Dean & Deluca or Joan's on 3rd in LA that has fantastic soups, sandwiches and salads for take-away service. Afterwards you should grab some chocolates from Gearharts, a gourmet confectioner right around the corner.
If you need late-night food options, follow the South Fork Food Truck twitter feed @SouthForkTruck to get your hands on some delicious Southern comfort food! For pictures that show you what the food offerings and the atmosphere of these places are like, feel free to use the link for more context:
If you like wine and want a memorable dinner, the Palladio restaurant at Barboursville Vineyards is excellent and a beautiful location.
I like the Ivy Inn very much. A traditional atmosphere but not stuffy and great cooking by a James Beard nominated chef.
Others that should be on your list: Mas Tapas in the Belmont neighborhood (get there early or be prepared for a long wait); Public Fish and Oyster on W. Main for a great raw bar (check out their current oyster list on its Facebook page), Brookville on the pedestrian mall, if you have a hankering for pork in particular (chef sources 90% of his menu from within 100 miles of Cville); El Tepeyac is a small Salvadoran/Mexican place off Rt. 29 - it lacks atmosphere and wine, but is a foodie destination for its authentic eats.