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“Wonderful historic feeling” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Gadsby's Tavern

Gadsby's Tavern
138 N Royal St, Alexandria, VA 22314-3278
703-548-1288
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Ranked #58 of 673 Restaurants in Alexandria
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Price range: $30 - $30
Cuisines: American
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special occasions, Local cuisine, Doing business, Entertaining clients
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast, Late Night, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Cross street: Cameron Street
Description: Gadsby's Tavern has been offering fine dining since 1770. Enjoy lunch and dinner in one of the elegant Colonial dining rooms. The one-of-a-kind Gadsby's Tavern experience awaits you.
Buffalo, New York
Top Contributor
618 reviews 618 reviews
253 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 141 cities Reviews in 141 cities
331 helpful votes 331 helpful votes
“Wonderful historic feeling”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 18, 2014

We stopped in for a traditional beer and light snack. Absolutely live the historic ambience and experience. This is a great place. Just imagine historically significant dinners of years past, including George Washington himself. I would urge everyone to stop buy.

Visited August 2014
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333 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    136
    110
    52
    20
    15
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Any
English first
Dayton, Ohio
Top Contributor
53 reviews 53 reviews
39 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
“Good with Groups; Go for the Traditional Dishes”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 14, 2014

I joined a large group of coworkers at this landmark Old Town Alexandria eatery that could easily be termed a museum of colonial dining. Several dishes on the menu purportedly mirror their 1780's origins so closely, you could readily imagine you're dining with old George W (the FIRST, not the 43d) himself.

While my path was a culinary dead end (I went for the prime rib, which, in my opinion, was flavorful but a bit chewy), several of my cohort found paradise with one of the quaint originals, the Gentleman's Pye. This particular dish, a very tempting bowl of lamb and beef stewed in wine with a puff pastry top crust, received rave reviews, as did the lamb chops, the pork chops, and the filets of beef ordered around the table. The assorted side dishes ordered were also well appreciated, but I noted several plates were cleared still holding large clumps of the "daily vegetables" served with most of the entrees. For my part, I particularly enjoyed the wedge salad, a crisp and refreshing quarter head of iceberg served with crumbled bleu cheese, bacon bits, thinly sliced red onion, a quartered tomato, and a tangy horseradish dressing on the side.

Gadsby's (being a tavern, doh!) has a long and varied wine list along with a good mix of traditional-style ales to quench your colonial thirst; sadly, they are not local beers, coming instead bottled from Philadelphia's Yards brewery. I would imagine Gadsby's of old served more local fare.

Overall, the ambiance is hard to beat; rustic hand-hewn floors, antique glass in the windows, and the matching antique tables. I give them high marks for service -- the restaurant handled our rather large group very well, but I have to say, at those prices, I don't expect to get a chewy prime rib. I'd still go back -- and order the Gentleman's Pye or the filet.

  • Visited August 2014
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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Saratoga Springs, New York
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Wish they tried harder”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 11, 2014

Being a history buff, I was excited to have dinner in this historic building. The dinner was fine, nothing spectacular, and somewhat pricey (though the bread was really good). The waitress was pleasant in a lackluster, spacey way. What I found most disappointing was that there was no emphasis on the building's history. Some materials on the table to tell you about the building, the various rooms, etc. would have been so terrific. If I hadn't read about the place before going, I would have known nothing about its historical significance.

  • Visited August 2014
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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Cornwall, Canada
Top Contributor
58 reviews 58 reviews
44 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
“Service was very good - food not so much”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 10, 2014

This is definitely a tourist attraction more than it is a fine restaurant. The service was good. The food however, was served warm and flavourless.

  • Visited August 2014
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 2 of 5 stars Food
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Sanatoga
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
“Colonial charm in Old Alexandria”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 7, 2014 via mobile

My daughter attends GWU in Washington DC, so we almost always stay in Alexandria VA when my wife and I come to visit. Gadsby's Tavern had always been a required meal whenever we are here. When we were here over the Christmas holiday, we toured the building by day, and dined here in the evening. We were delighted not just by the food, but also by a costumed colonial man who engaged us in conversation about the ongoing War of 1812! He was quite funny and amusing....looking forward to seeing him again!

Visited December 2013
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