The Best Food and Drink in Virginia
Virginia is for lovers … especially food and drink lovers. From the Chesapeake Bay to the Shenandoah Valley, Virginia is bursting with local delicacies, historic foods, and incredible wine. To celebrate all the great food and drink that our country’s 10th state has to offer, we’ve rounded up 22 of Old Dominion’s claims to culinary fame as part of our first-annual guide to the best food and drink in every state.
Take a taste of history in Virginia. The state is the East Coast’s largest producer of seafood, and leads in oyster production. One of its most famous oysters is the Rappahannock from the Chesapeake Bay, which can be enjoyed at Merroir on the Rappahannock River. Though grapes have been grown since the days of Thomas Jefferson, the Virginia wine industry has exploded in recent decades, and now claims the fifth-highest number of wineries in the country. Virginia is the home of Barboursville Vineyards, considered one of the nation’s top wineries. And where would good wine be without a tasty, salty snack to pair with it? Virginia country hams are famous the world over, and the delicious Ham and Biscuits sandwich (a version of the state’s original breakfast sandwich) from Early Bird Biscuit Co. and Bakery in Richmond is stuffed full of Crabill’s ham from the Shenandoah Valley. Virginia is equally famous for peanuts, which can be enjoyed in soup form at the King’s Arms Tavern in Williamsburg, which opened for business in 1772.
Virginia is home to many iconic foods, and over the course of the past year we’ve honored everything from its best hot dogs and grocery store to its best dive bar and rib joint in our comprehensive and wide-ranging lists and rankings, compiled through extensive research and with input from a wide network of site contributors, bloggers, journalists, and chefs. We’ve compiled these into individual slideshows celebrating the best food and drink in every state, and you can find our Virginia gallery here.