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“Good Food, Good Service, Good Atmosphere” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Aioli

Aioli
29 North Augusta Street, Staunton, VA
+1 540-885-1414
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Ranked #5 of 108 Restaurants in Staunton
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Price range: $7 - $26
Cuisines: Mediterranean
Dining options: Reservations, Late Night
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations, Late Night
Chesterland, Ohio
Top Contributor
310 reviews 310 reviews
133 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 112 cities Reviews in 112 cities
253 helpful votes 253 helpful votes
“Good Food, Good Service, Good Atmosphere”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 18, 2012

Staunton Virginia is a charming town and boasts a disproportionate number of very good restaurants, perhaps courtesy of the Blackfriars Theater. Aioli is a terrific addition.

Aioli is on Augusta street, about 150 feet north of the main drag in Staunton (Beverly) so you might not see it immediately. It is across the street and a little further north from the movie theater. Once you step inside, you know you're going to have a nice meal. The setting is simultaneously chic and traditional with bare brick walls, wood floors, and yet a more modern sub-ceiling over the original tinwork (which you can still see). It was the kind of place where you immediately felt in the mood to enjoy the company of friends and a good meal. I have posted one photo, but you can see others on the the restaurant's web site.

The chef is from Casablanca, Morocco, and there are some middle eastern offerings but the food reminds me the most of Spain or the western Mediterranean in general, with lots of tapas and different plate sizes. You can go with tapas, full entrees, or just about every combination of plates you might want. I had a quail tapas that was very savory. The other offerings include everything from bread and olives to scallops, mussels, or lamb sausage. I found the tapas to be more than enough for a meal, but they also have entrees ranging from salmon to paella, to steak, all with the same Mediterranean twist. I believe the menus are also available on line, although they also have specials on the chalkboard.

They have a wide selections of wine, both by the bottle and by the glass, and they will let you taste a little to try something new. The wait staff also seemed very knowledgeable about the food and made helpful recommendations.

I went to Aioli before a show at the Blackfriars (which is wonderful, by the way). They had no trouble getting me out before it began.

I would recommend Aioli both for a meal before a show or as a destination in its own right.

  • Visited November 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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163 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Marietta, Georgia
Top Contributor
96 reviews 96 reviews
56 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 35 cities Reviews in 35 cities
69 helpful votes 69 helpful votes
“A special gem”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 29, 2012

Staunton, a Civil War town in the shadow of the Appalachian mountains, is an unexpectedly funky, friendly, liberal-minded, smart little city, and Aioli is a gem which should not be missed. Our dinner was wonderful. We began with the butternut squash soup which was superb. And the turnout was impressive, as was each dish. My wife ordered the three kinds of bruschetta and gave it an A rating. My creamy risotto was A+ -- large kernels, not the small dry pebbles so often encountered -- and yes, it was truly creamy. The winter beets were fresh and the accompanying goat cheese was so warm and fresh that I wondered whether the restaurant had a kid tied up outside in back. A warning about service, however: it was slow. With pre-theater reservations, we were one of the first two couples to arrive at the restaurant. Yet, it was almost half an hour before our soup course was served. And our next courses kept us waiting, too. I suspect this was because each dish was hand-prepared largely from scratch. It certainly looked and tasted that way. When we ordered the apple tart for dessert, our waitress warned us it would take 12 minutes to prepare -- which I took as confirmation of a hands-on kitchen. Just be prepared to take the time to enjoy a great meal, and because we arrived early, we were able to do so. The decor is eclectic and adds to the ambience. The restaurant had filled up by the time we left for the theatre--and many of the diners seemed to be local, another point in Aioli's favor. But if you're from out-of-town as we were, here's a tip: Aioli is about three blocks away from the Blackfriars Theatre and not all that easy to find. Two blocks east on Beverly St., then turn north. You won't spot it easily because there is no obvious awning, but keep walking toward the end of that block. Like the service wait, the walk is well worth it.
--James Polk, Marietta, Ga.

  • Visited October 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Staunton, Virginia
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
10 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
“My Birthday Dinner”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 29, 2012

Aioli was my choice for dinner for my birthday celebration. I was very pleased. I posted online that we were going to Aioli for my birthday dinner and one of my friends surprised me by calling the restaurant and paying for my dessert! As always, everything was delicious!

They have live jazz on the first and second Thursdays of every month. They have private dining for up to 35 people.

  • Visited September 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Philadelphia
Top Contributor
181 reviews 181 reviews
125 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 77 cities Reviews in 77 cities
67 helpful votes 67 helpful votes
“Our favorite stop for dinner in Staunton”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 11, 2012

This is about our forth visit to this cool restaurant and we continue to be impressed. The salmon dish that my wife had was excellent with a unique combination of red beets, citrus fruits and pureed califlower. The fish was cooked to perfection. I had the grilled chicken with peanut sauce and the diver scallops. Both excellent. The menu is not extensive, but the quality is up there. The chef owner of Aioli certainly knows what he is doing with food. Well done!!

  • Visited October 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Virginia
Top Contributor
154 reviews 154 reviews
116 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 49 cities Reviews in 49 cities
79 helpful votes 79 helpful votes
“What a pleasant surprise”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 10, 2012

My friend and I parked our car and then were looking for a place for a light dinner.
The lamb sausage were outstanding, probably the best I have ever had and my lentil soup was seasoned to perfection, I love lentils.
Our wine was really good, and the pour was substantial...

  • Visited October 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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