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Mel's Cafe

Certificate of Excellence
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719 W Main St, Charlottesville, VA 22903-4570
434-971-8819
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Today
10:00 am - 11:00 pm
Open now
See all hours
Hours:
Mon - Thu 10:00 am - 10:00 pm
Fri - Sat 10:00 am - 11:00 pm
Dining options: Dinner, Breakfast, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Takeout

TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 144 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 95
    Excellent
  • 40
    Very good
  • 5
    Average
  • 1
    Poor
  • 3
    Terrible
Rating summary
  • Food
    4.5 of 5 stars
    Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
    Atmosphere
    3.5 of 5 stars
Down home perfection!

Mel's will take you back to when diners were diners. This will remind you of the neighborhood cafe where you are greeted by name, by the owners. Chicken fried to perfections, fish on Friday, great french fries and oh yes, homemade desserts!

4 of 5 starsReviewed 4 days ago
DivaO
,
USA
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144 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
Language
USA
Level Contributor
49 reviews
32 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 days ago NEW

Mel's will take you back to when diners were diners. This will remind you of the neighborhood cafe where you are greeted by name, by the owners. Chicken fried to perfections, fish on Friday, great french fries and oh yes, homemade desserts!

Helpful?
Thank DivaO
Blacksburg, Virginia
Level Contributor
17 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 5 days ago NEW

Visited this diner-style restaurant on a short trip to Charlottesville. I was looking for a place that served both lunch and breakfast. My partner wanted lunch, while I wanted something more breakfast related. If you're looking for organic and such, this isn't the place for you. If you like local, friendly home-cooking, this is the place for you. Mel was... More 

Helpful?
Thank mclemons
Charlottesville
Level Contributor
13 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago

If you want real southern Soul Food, Mel's is the only game in town. Fried Chicken, chitlins, home cooked foods. Mel's is not fancy, but the food is genuine southern soul. Don't expect more than a few old tables and some vinyl seats. Foo Foo Food this is not. The staff is always friendly. Order at the counter and they... More 

Helpful?
Thank Charlie S
Virginia beach
Level Contributor
17 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

We LOVE this little soul food restaurant! They have the best fried chicken and home cooked veggies! The staff is friendly and the owners are in the restaurant daily!

Helpful?
Thank mycarribeansoul15
Charlottesville, Virginia
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 5 weeks ago via mobile

A great couple met me when I walked in I could watch my food being cooked by Arthur as Mel watched everything that was happening in the kitchen and making sure that all the food was fresh quite fresh an interesting place where the owners really clear on how the customers are being triggered just an usual experience such delicious... More 

Helpful?
2 Thank baron1244
Charlottesville, Virginia
Level Contributor
229 reviews
173 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 130 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 23, 2015

After reading all the good reviews, we finally got to this place. It is small, only seating around 20 people inside, but it has such a nice atmosphere. It is just what we like, far from being a chain restaurant. The people working there were very friendly and the place had a welcoming feeling, cosy with family pictures on the... More 

Helpful?
2 Thank norskies
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 17, 2015 via mobile

Took in Mel's after visiting friends the night before. This was a Sunday morning and I think everyone wanted to be at Mel's for a classic breakfast experience. It's a little worn for wear, and draws and eclectic crowd. That being said, the food was great and the portions bigger than expected. Would maybe try going during the week to... More 

Helpful?
Thank Joanthetraveler
Charlottesville, Virginia
Level Contributor
56 reviews
28 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 15, 2015

This little diner is right across from the train station on West Main. It looks a little questionable on the outside but you feel very welcome when you visit. I really liked all of my food and would come back without hesitation. Plus yummy Pearl's Bakery with amazing cupcakes is right next door.

Helpful?
Thank Summergirl22
Baltimore, Maryland
Level Contributor
43 reviews
25 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 9, 2015

Mel's was a pleasant surprise during a summer trip to Charlottesville. We'd gotten a little bit of a late start to our day and wanted breakfast when most placing were well into their lunch menu and Mel's came to the rescue. Friendly service & great food (especially the fried potatoes) made me feel like I was eating at a family... More 

Helpful?
Thank LisaPM1
Level Contributor
9 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 7, 2015 via mobile

Some of the best wings I've had in a long time. The sides were awesome. Friendly staff and nice atmosphere. From the outside the place seems small and less appealing than I expected from reviews. Never judge a book etc.

Helpful?
Thank David A

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Restaurant Details

Location and Contact Information

  • Address: 719 W Main St, Charlottesville, VA 22903-4570
  • Location: United States  >  Virginia (VA)  >  Charlottesville
  • Phone Number: 434-971-8819

Price and Cuisine

  • Average Prices: USD 8
  • Cuisine: American

Restaurant Characteristics

  • Good for: Families with children
Open Hours
Monday
10:00 am - 10:00 pm
Tuesday
10:00 am - 10:00 pm
Wednesday
10:00 am - 10:00 pm
Thursday
10:00 am - 10:00 pm
Friday
10:00 am - 11:00 pm
Saturday
10:00 am - 11:00 pm

Questions & Answers

Questions? Get answers from Mel's Cafe staff and past visitors.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Do you have gluten-free options?
  • Is there a dress code?
  • Do you allow dogs on the outdoor patio?