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Whether sharing an outing with friends or slowing down to eat after a busy day of travel and business engagements, we all love a well-crafted, upscale meal. Thankfully, Virginia provides some of fine dining’s best contenders in its most happening cities, from Norfolk to Fairfax. Read on to find your next business dinner, solo self-care, or date night!

1.     Jefferson Hotel (Richmond, VA)

An historic hotel and restaurant built in 1895, the Jefferson Hotel has it all, from afternoon tea to luxurious evening dinners in the Lemaire dining room. The Jefferson proudly sources many ingredients from Richmond and the surrounding area, crafting savory dishes such as braised lamb with apricot jus, spice rubbed salmon, and even a gourmet house burger featuring foie gras and bacon.

2.     Varia (Norfolk, VA)

This elegant wine bar and Italian trattoria is based out of Hilton Norfolk The Main—but it’s no chain experience. Modern, elevated, and stylish, Varia serves a variety of decadent light bites and Italian entrees accompanied by live jazz in the evenings. But their focus is on the vast selection of wines they offer, both domestic and imported: a veritable library of reds, whites, and rosés, all with tasting notes and a selection of pour sizes.  Stop by Varia for a glass, a margherita, and a soothing night atmosphere.

3.     Clarity (Vienna, VA)

Located just outside Fairfax, Clarity boasts a curated American menu served in a sleek, upscale environment. Chef and owner John Krinn works personally with patrons to arrange unique experiences—whether you’d like a gourmet meal of Red Russian salad and spiced New Zealand elk leg, an outdoor cigar lounge, a wine tasting, or a whiskey and bourbon pairing evening.

4.     Grandstaff & Stein (Richmond, VA)

If you’re seeking an exceptionally characterized dining experience, 1920s-themed Grandstaff and Stein specializes in speakeasy. You do need a reservation… and a code word to enter the restaurant! Beautifully prepared crab cakes, osso buco, and filet mignon grace the menu as live music serenades patrons. But perhaps the best part of this Prohibition-style lounge is the drinks: G & S’s signature libation is a smoked old fashioned, expertly mixed with rye whiskey and smoked over cedar planks.

5.     Freemason Abbey (Norfolk, VA)

Located in another historic building, Freemason Abbey unites both antique and modern with its refined cuisine served in a former church that was built around 1873. A stained glass rose window and exposed wooden beams create an elegant-yet-comfortable ambience. A variety of seafood and steaks prepared with skill and flair elevate the dining experience to luxury level as you look around the balcony on which you’re seated, going back in time to imagine what it must have been like a century ago.