Fun things to do in Richmond, VA tomorrow?
September 21, 2017 4:34 PM   Subscribe

Partner and I are considering a spontaneous day-trip out to Richmond, VA tomorrow. We have enough basic familiarity with Richmond to have a general idea of what could be fun to do, but are seeking insider tips and unexpected ideas.

Our interests/hobbies, if it helps:
- Vinyl records (We know about Plan 9. We are hoping to hear about any other record stores, especially if they have a lot of vintage and underground soul, funk, r&b, psychedelic, experimental, african/brazilian/middle eastern, or private press stuff!)
- We're foodies (the more adventurous, the better) and lovers of beer/breweries
- Museums, cultural institutions, arboretums, gardens, etc are all welcome
- Atlas Obscura-worthy sightseeing (I've taken a look at AO's list, but would prefer to hear the recommendations of Mefites)
- Flea markets/junk shops are another big "yes" for us
- It doesn't have to fall into the above categories- if you think it's worth checking out, we'd still like to hear about it!

We have a modest budget. We're also hoping to take it relatively easy, and be back home by maybe like 7 or 8pm (it's an hour drive for us)- so not as interested this time in live shows/late night events.
posted by nightrecordings to Travel & Transportation around Richmond, VA (12 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Mekong for food and beer and their sibling brewery The Answer.
posted by cushie at 5:01 PM on September 21, 2017 [2 favorites]

For vinyl, Steady Sounds and Deep Groove are two more great options in our fair city.

Saison is really delicious if you can get a table there tomorrow (in the Jackson Ward neighborhood). Helen's has a great atmosphere and food, but is slightly less adventurous. Pature is also a fun environment with interesting small plates to share.

If you would like to get drinks before or after dinner, Heritage has a nice bar and cocktails, and they opened a late night bar menu with creative bar snacks and cocktails.

West End Antiques is a huge venue for antiques with lots of mod stuff and mid-century items, too.

Hope you have a great visit if you come by!
posted by shortyJBot at 5:15 PM on September 21, 2017 [1 favorite]

You should come see me!

Seriously, though, Cary Street between 195 and the Boulevard is your best bet for what you want. However, I would suggest Bejing on Grove for lunch. It is a great, new Chinese restaurant that is super vegetarian-friendly. Otherwise, I'd eat at The Daily on Cary Street. Great stuff.
posted by 4ster at 5:22 PM on September 21, 2017

Also, this.
posted by 4ster at 5:30 PM on September 21, 2017

A trip through Weird Richmond is not complete without a stop at Strange Matter. As it's currently only open 2-2, and you want to avoid late-night shows this trip, it's probably not for you this time—but do try and go there next time you're in town!
posted by infinitewindow at 6:03 PM on September 21, 2017

Seconding Steady Sounds for vinyl.

Pasture is delicious and worth a trip. A bit spendy and not near much but so good.

Hardywood opens at 4 tomorrow and makes great beers.

GWARbar is ridiculous in the best way and also represents the Richmond I loved growing up there. The food is good, too. Doesn't open until 4 though.
posted by darksong at 6:58 PM on September 21, 2017

If you like beer and / or Vietnamese - definitely hit Mekong or The Answer brewpub as mentioned above. The Poe Museum is wonderful, lots of cool weird things to see there, and so is the nearby St Johns church (of Patrick Henrry fame). Hope you have a great time!
posted by machinecraig at 7:00 PM on September 21, 2017

I'm a little jealous of you, because tomorrow is the beginning of the Street Art Festival.
posted by 41swans at 7:21 PM on September 21, 2017

The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts has a really surprisingly good collection, and admission is free. If you like Japanese woodblock prints, they pretty much always have a good exhibition of Kawase Hasui landscape prints going on on one theme or another - this year's exhibition is mountain scenes.

The VMFA is also not too far from Scott's Addition, which has become the neighborhood for all things fermented alcohol: a bunch of really good breweries (Ardent, the Veil, Three Notch'd, Strangeways, the aformentioned Hardywood Park, and several more), two excellent cideries (Blue Bee and Buskey Cider) and even a meadery (Black Heath, which I have yet to try but hear good things of), all within walking distance of each other. Scott's Addition is a few blocks from the Street Art Festival 41swans mentions, too.

Mekong and Answer are also both great (and their owner, An Bui, has done more than anybody to spark and mentor the Richmond brewing renaissance), but they're maybe a little bit out into the suburbs to hit during a day trip depending on what else you have on your plate. An also owns a third beer bar in the Fan, Commercial Tap House, that's closer to some of the other suggestions you're getting.

If you have the time, I would strongly recommend a trip to Sub Rosa Bakery in my neighborhood, Church Hill, to buy a loaf of their amazing bread to take back home with you. Or if you take 4ster's advice and hit Carytown, Ellwood Thompson's grocery store there usually carries Sub Rosa bread.
posted by strangely stunted trees at 7:26 PM on September 21, 2017 [1 favorite]

I enjoy shyndiggz for desert.
posted by skewed at 10:23 PM on September 21, 2017

Maymont park. My favorite place in the US.
posted by ananci at 8:52 AM on September 22, 2017

probably too late here to be helpful, but definitely Hollywood Cemetery.
posted by xmutex at 3:41 PM on September 22, 2017 [1 favorite]

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