Roots Natural Kitchen
1329 West Main St., Charlottesville
That place on The Corner in Charlottesville with the line streaming out the door is very likely Roots Natural Kitchen. But don’t be put off by the line. It moves fast. And there’s a good reason why it’s there. It’s a great restaurant for quick, delicious, healthy and filling food. Roots Natural Kitchen is a “bowl” restaurant. Customers have their choice of more than a half-dozen signature bowls (The “El Jefe,” for example, is a base of brown rice, accompanied by chicken, kale, black beans, charred white corn, red onions, feta cheese, pita chips and avocado, with a cilantro lime dressing,) or you can build your own from a vast array of ingredients.
Hours Monday – Friday, 10:30 AM to 9:00 PM. Saturday and Sunday 11:00 AM to 9:00 PM.
Blue Phoenix Café & Grocery
110 West Washington St., Lexington
Although a Lexington magnet for vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free diners, the Blue Phoenix will also satisfy the most extreme carnivore. The food is top-notch and the grocery, Lexington’s only downtown food market, features local and organic bulk, dairy, packaged food, bread, bagels, farm fresh eggs, produce, and cafe grab n' go. What is truly moving, however, is the café’s "Everyone Eats" policy that ensures there will always be at least one menu item that is priced on a pay-what-you-can model so that everyone who wants to may enjoy a dignified, lovingly prepared meal. The no-questions-asked practice is fueled by the generosity of customers who purchase meal vouchers for community members facing food insecurity and hunger.
Hours Monday – Saturday 11:00 AM to 3:00 PM, Closed Sundays
Cranberry's Grocery & Eatery
7 South New St., Staunton
Located in a restored 1700s vintage building in Staunton’s historic downtown, Cranberry’s is a find indeed, not only for an outstanding menu of vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free and standard offerings. There’s also a charming market up front, featuring produce, housewares, natural remedies, and other goodies. It’s the natural, local food, however, that draws most people in the first place. Cranberry’s serves up a tasty variety of sandwiches and wraps, soups, salads, quiches, world-class locally roasted coffees, and scratch-made smoothies. The breakfast menu includes eggs and sausage from nearby internationally known Polyface Farm.
Hours are from 7:30 AM to 5:30 PM seven days a week. Winter hours may vary.