Lexington, Virginia ~Love Local Food Tours!

Red Henred hen risottored hen blackberriesred hen wine

Our Lexington, Virginia food tour continues…this tour was packed with so many delicious and delightful eateries that I cannot fit all of the information into just one post! For a review of the dessert specialties offered on this tour please visit: https://beckysbubblesblog.wordpress.com/2016/07/26/food-tour-lexington-virginia-how-sweet-it-is.

One of my favorite stops on the tour was The Red Hen Restaurant has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, Southern Living and Virginia Living Magazine.

Chef Becca Norris who owns the Red Hen Restaurant with her husband Chef Matt Adams shared with us their philosophy of farm-to-table: “Good food is not meant to be thrown in a  truck. It should be picked and eaten.”


Becca graciously served us Risotto with Mushroom Duxelles with Pecorino Cheese in local pottery bowls.  She happened to have just picked some blackberries so she shared those with us too.

Please visit the Red Hen blog ~ great content and delicious photos!!!


Martini signred hen wine

Our risotto was accompanied by a lovely 2014  rosé wine from Barren Ridge Vineyards in Fishersville, Virginia.  Chambourcin, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, and Vidal Blanc grapes blend perfectly into a beautiful pale pink dry rosé. Bright strawberry notes. A beautiful summer wine!

Stonewall Jackson gardenbeets

The Red Hen Restaurant gets many of their herbs and some fresh heirloom produce from the historic Stonewall Jackson House garden located across the street from the restaurant.

Red Hen at Home

Meal Kits prepared by the Red Hen’s Chef Matt Adams are available at the Blue Phoenix Cafe and Market  in Lexington, Virginia. The kit includes all of the ingredients you’ll need for a delicious meal with step-by-step instructions to prepare the meal.


Examples of meal kit menus:
Arctic Char w/ Fingerling Potatoes, Cherry tomatoes, Dijon Crème & Dill
Serves 2

Moroccan Skirt Steak, Harissa Spiced Coucous, Chermoula, & Kalamata Olives
Serves 2 – 4

BBQ’d Pork Kebabs w/ Cilantro Lime Rice
2 – 3

Grana Padano Crusted Organic Chicken Breast w/ Yellow Squash, Basil & Caper Linguini
Serves 2 – 3

We had the pleasure of visiting the Blue Phoenix Restaurant on our tour…

salad phenoix

Wow, you know the chefs are special when they put an edible orchid on your salad. This lovely plate was served at the Blue Phoenix Restaurant.  All Vegetarian All the Time with lots of vegan and gluten free options.  We enjoyed the Counterfeit Crabcake ~ hearts of palm – zucchini cakes served on a bed of spring mix, local tomatoes, red onions and house-made Chesapeake Sauce.


Another marvelous restaurant that is included on the tour is the Southern Inn Restaurant.

neon sign

Neon signs are no longer allowed in Lexington proper, but this one was grandfathered in since it had been hanging in front of the Southern Inn Restaurant since 1932.

fried chicken

As gals of the south, my grandmother and then my mother made the best fried chicken, but the Southern Inn makes the BESSSSST fried chicken!  It is marinated overnight in buttermilk and then double-breaded before frying.

A fun fact about Lexington is that there are rumors of ghosts ~ to be expected in a historical city.  On the tour be sure to ask your tour guide Amelia about the friendly children ghosts in the Southern Inn kitchen ~ so much fun!

wine 2

Rockbridge Winery created this wine label especially for the Southern Inn.


Southern Inn’s wine list is a pleasant surprise:


electric carelectric car charging station

There were surprises around every corner in Lexington as we noshed our way through this iconic city.  As we listened to our tour guide tell us about the history of Lexington, we found this “Gem” (the name of this electric car is Gem!) parked behind one of the older brick buildings with it’s charger station nearby.  1930 meets 2016!  Isn’t this car cute? Actually it is a great utility vehicle!


pure eats photopure eats

Hamburger Place Pure EatsPure Eats hamburger

Pure Eats Restaurant (1930’s renovated cottage style gas station that used to be a Pure Oil) serves the General ~ Bold Rock Cider and OJ ~ the Pure Eats version of a Mimosa and the Keydet ~ Bloody Mary Mix & Devil’s Backbone ~ Pure Eats version of a Red Eye.

We sampled the BEST hamburger at Pure Eats. They are known for the “Best Burger in the Shenandoah Valley”.  Lucky college students that have this eatery right down the street!

As their menu explains:  We serve fresh, local, single-steer hamburgers from Buffalo Creek Beef, processed here in Lexington at Donald’s Meats.  Topped by melted Swiss, Cheddar, American or Pepper Jack cheese and served on a toasted kaiser roll with your choice of lettuce, grilled onions, raw onions, pickles, tomato, mushrooms, jalapenos or thick-cut bacon, this is as good as a burger gets.  


Sides include golden beer-battered fries, sweet potato fries, beer battered onion rings, fried mushrooms, fried pickles and Rt. 11 Chips.


Movie sign

Sign on street corner from the movie Sommersby  that was filmed in Lexington in 1993, starring Jodie Foster and Richard Gere.

More to come about this FABULOUS tour in future posts…


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