A Foodie’s Guide to Culpeper, VA: Top Dining Spots You Can’t Miss

Culpeper is a charming little town in central Virginia, right at the intersection of routes 15 and 29. 

Despite its small size, there are some excellent restaurants in Culpeper, most of which are conveniently centered around Main Street. 

You’ll find a nice, eclectic mix of restaurants, including Thai, Italian, mouthwatering burgers, BBQ, Mexican, and much more!

Below are some of my top recommendations for the best restaurants in town. 

(Top photo courtesy It’s About Thyme.)



It’s About Thyme

The whimsically named It’s About Thyme is a charming European restaurant located just off Main Street on East Davis Street. It’s a great choice if you’re celebrating a special occasion like a birthday or anniversary.   

Food at Its About Thyme in Culpeper
Source: It’s About Thyme

The restaurant is decorated with large colorful murals that are inspired by famous European scenes. They’ll instantly transport you to the French countryside or the Italian coastline!

You’ll find a nice selection of dishes that range from fresh pastas (Ravioli and Fettuccini Alfredo), to Rotisserie Chicken, seafood (Salmon Filet and Scallops & Pasta), Pork Roast, Pepper Steak, Salads, and Sandwiches.  

If you’re planning an overnight stay in Culpeper, you can even stay in one of the gorgeous overnight suites above the restaurant. 

The rooms are decorated with beautiful antique furniture and artwork that will immediately transport you to Italy and France. Some of the rooms even include private balconies! 

There are also two executive suites that are specifically designed for business travelers. They’re more modern in design and include a full kitchen, bathroom, living room, and bedroom. 

Culpeper, VA is a charming historic town in Central Virginia! Check out my favorite things to do when you’re visiting, including cool breweries, historic homes, and more!

PINTO Thai

PINTO Thai is a great choice for Thai food in downtown Culpeper. The authentic Thai restaurant is owned by a woman who had a restaurant in Thailand before moving to the United States, so you know it’s the real deal! 

I love Thai cuisine for its rich colors and flavorful sauces! You’ll find all the classic Thai dishes on the menu, including Pad Thai Noodles, Chicken Satay, Duck Rolls, Steamed Dumplings, Crab Rangoon, and much more. 

I also love the use of lemongrass in Thai dishes, particularly in Lemongrass Soup! 

The menu at PINTO Thai is very extensive, with soups, salads, Drunken Noodle, many soft shell crab dishes, shrimp dishes, beef, chicken, and much more. The biggest challenge will be just picking one dish! 

PINTO does feature a Thai Sampler appetizer that gives you a chance to try several different dishes, like Satay, Crispy Rolls, and Steamed Rolls. 

For dessert, one of my favorite Thai dishes is Sticky Rice with Mango, which is just the right amount of sweet!  

PINTO Thai has a modern industrial design and a patio with outside seating.  

Country Cafe

Country Cafe is one of the best breakfast restaurants in town. It’s located on Orange Road, not far from downtown Culpeper. 

Outside of the Country Cafe in Culpeper, VA
Source: Country Cafe

The interior is simple yet comfortable, with wood-paneled walls and counters, cute valence curtains, and diner chairs. 

They serve up all of the breakfast staples that you’d expect from a place called Country Cafe, including Eggs with your choice of Ham, Bacon, or Sausage; Pancakes; French Toast; Cheese or Veggie Omelette. 

Country Cafe is a perfect spot for comfort food in Culpeper. What more could you ask for!

They’re also open for Lunch, with a nice selection of Sandwiches (Chicken Sandwich, Philly Cheese Steak, and Grilled Ham and Cheese, just to name a few); plus Burgers, Pulled Pork BBQ, and Crab Cakes.

Make sure you stop by on Fridays too! They have a Fish Fry every Friday evening from 4 to 8 pm, offering many types of seafood as well as burgers and steaks. Their oysters especially are incredible!

Sweet Roux

Sweet Roux is a fun American restaurant located in the heart of Culpeper, and right next door to It’s About Thyme

Outside seating at Sweet Roux, one of the best restaurants in Culpeper, VA
Source: Sweet Roux

They feature plenty of traditional American dishes like Tacos, Gourmet Burgers, Sandwiches, Pasta, and Steak. But you’ll also find some surprises, like Cajun Frog Legs and the Jagerschnitzel (pork tenderloin, mashed potatoes, and mushrooms). 

Many of the dishes are heavily inspired by Cajun cuisine, including Shrimp & Grits (a favorite of mine!); Take Me to NOLA Pasta (with shrimp, spicy Andouille, penne, and Cajun Alfredo); and Au Jus Poutine. 

As you can tell, the dishes at Sweet Roux are bursting with flavors!  

One of the highlights of Sweet Roux, though, goes beyond just the food. When you stop by, you’ll definitely want to try one of their many specialty cocktails!

There’s the Red Velvet Martini (Vodka, Chambord, Cranberry Juice, and Prosecco); the refreshing Winter on the Beach (Smirnoff Citrus, Peach Schnapps, Cream of Coconut, Cranberry Juice, and Pineapple Juice); plus several specialty margaritas including the fabulous Bubbly Margarita with Prosecco! 

And with a name like Sweet Roux, you know you have to leave room for dessert! My favorite foods are chocolate and peanut butter, so you know I’m all about the Chocolate Peanut Butter Pizza (with chocolate chip cookie crust, hot fudge, and peanut butter mousse)! 

Flavor on Main

Flavor on Main is an American restaurant located right on Main Street in the heart of Culpeper. You can’t miss it, and you won’t want to!  

The restaurant has a retro, art deco-inspired decor with aluminum panels, dark wood, and vintage posters that give the place lots of personality and character!  

The menu features a nice mix of pasta dishes (Gnocchi with caramelized onions and black truffles, Lasagna); seafood dishes (Pan-seared scallops and Salmon); plus Braised Brisket, Beef Tenderloin, and Marinated Flank Steak.

Flavor on Main is also a top choice for Sunday brunch in Culpeper. They have some incredible dishes that go beyond the typical brunch fare, like Cheesecake Inspired French Toast (!); Nutella and Banana Crepes; Cajun Shrimp Avocado Salad; and Chicken and Waffles with bacon-infused maple syrup! 

And if you stop by on Wednesdays or Thursdays, you’ll be treated to “Wednesday Pasta Night”, which features three courses for a discounted price; and the “Thursday Early Bird Menu”, which also features three courses for a discounted price. 

Flavor on Main is also a great spot for special occasions. They have two private rooms, including “The Gatsby Room”, which is as classic and retro as you’d imagine! The room seats up to 60 people and is perfect for wedding parties, large birthdays, or other special events! 

Graze to Griddle

Graze to Griddle is a popular Culpeper restaurant located right next to Sweet Roux and It’s About Thyme. 

They specialize in serving grass-fed beef burgers, and feature what some would consider the best burgers in town! In fact, it’s one of my favorite things to do in Culpeper!

You can build your own burger or order one of their house-special burgers, which comes with lettuce, tomato, onion, and “graze” sauce (which is a flavorful and unique combination of mayo, black pepper, and citrus.) 

If you’re not interested in a beef burger, then Graze to Griddle has chicken burgers as well. 

And you can get a side of yummy maple-chipotle dip for your burger. It’s the best combination of sweet and smoky! 

If you stop by, make sure you order the incredible Cheese Curds to go with your burger of choice! They’re delicious balls of breaded and fried cheese! 

Luigi’s Italian Restaurant

Luigi’s Italian Restaurant is a great option if you’re in the mood for Italian. It’s a little further away from downtown Culpeper, but it’s right off of US-29, which makes it really convenient. 

Luigi Restaurant in Culpeper, VA
Source: Luigi’s Italian Restaurant

The staff and service are all excellent. 

You’ll find all of your Italian favorites here, including appetizers like Bruschetta, Caprese Salad, and Fried Calamari. They also serve Neopolitan-style pizza, Strombolis, Calzones, Lasagna, Ravioli, Lobster Ravioli, Baked Ziti, Manicotti, Gnocchi, Fetuccini Alfredo, and more. 

Beyond pasta and pizza, you can also order burgers and subs.  

They also have a large reception space called the Tuscany Hall that’s great for hosting birthdays, wedding receptions, or other special occasions. The large space holds up to 500 guests! 

Grill 309

Grill 309 is a great spot for creative burgers and brunch that’s located right on South Main Street. 

They offer “Build Your Own Burger” options, but they also have specialty burgers like the Doughnut Burger (which includes an egg and bacon, plus it’s actually served on a doughnut! They also have a BBQ Burger and the vegan Impossible Burger. 

With a name like Grill, though, you know you can find more than just burgers. They also have Shrimp or Mahi Tacos, Hot Subs, and Sandwiches. There is also a nice selection of Salads, Wraps, and even Cajun dishes like Gumbo and Jambalaya. 

Grill 309 also has daily specials that make it a great weekday destination, including Burger Mondays, Tex-Mex Tuesdays, Whatever Wednesdays, and Appetizer Thursdays. 

On Saturdays and Sundays, Grill 309 is also a great brunch spot in Culpeper. Their brunch menu is a bit more traditional, but it features all of your comfort food favorites like Chicken & Waffles, Pancakes, Eggs Benedict, Omelettes, French Toast, and Biscuits & Gravy. 

I also recommend stopping by for happy hour. It’s a little early (3:09pm to 6pm), but the last hour that they’re open is also happy hour, which is great if you tend to go out later, like me!  

4 C’s

4 C’s is a good Peruvian restaurant in downtown Culpeper. They specialize in Peruvian rotisserie chicken. 

The restaurant is small and simple, but a good choice for lunch. 

I recommend the Peruvian rotisserie chicken, but they also have burgers, sandwiches, subs, salads, fries, and even pasta like Fettuccine Alfredo. 

4 C’s is also surprisingly great for breakfast! They have a delicious country-fried steak, waffles, pancakes, omelets, avocado toast, and more. 

Pancho Villa Mexican Restaurant

Pancho Villa Mexican Restaurant started in Culpeper in 1993, and it has since expanded to multiple locations throughout Virginia, including Fredericksburg and Stafford. 

It is family-owned and operated and prides itself on serving authentic Mexican cuisine in Northern and Central Virginia. 

You’ll find all of your favorite Mexican dishes here, including Shrimp and Fish Tacos, Enchiladas, Tostadas, Quesadillas, Fajitas, Burritos, plus Seafood, Chicken, and Steak dishes

If the large menu is too overwhelming, you can choose from one of several combination plates, which lets you choose a combination of Tacos, Enchiladas, Burritos, and more. 

For dessert, save room for Mexican favorites like Churros, Flan, and Fried Ice Cream, as well as Chocolate Lava Cake or Ice Cream Sundae.


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