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“Need more differentiation to their menu and warn folks about eggs...”
Review of The River and Rail

The River and Rail
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Ranked #17 of 474 Restaurants in Roanoke
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $12 - $30
Cuisines: American
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast, Reservations
Description: Southern, Local, Seasonal cooking in the heart of Roanoke nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Executive Chef Aaron Deal is James Beard nominated and is delighted to be serving traditional yet upscale southern classics in his Roanoke kitchen.
Hardy, Virginia
Level Contributor
10 reviews
10 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Need more differentiation to their menu and warn folks about eggs...”
Reviewed May 1, 2013

At first, I really enjoyed the food at River and Rail. It was different, fresh, and well prepared. I agree with previous posters about the salt. Not being a huge "salter" and I can do without salt in my deserts, specifically. The unfortunate thing I have to complain about, is after several times of coming to the restaurant over a series of a couple of months, it seems that the menu is always "real similar". Since the thought is to have something local, I was hoping for more differentiation from week to week and month to month, with just a few items remaining on the day in, day out menu. It seems that there is no lot of choices for those who don't eat much meat and the appetizer menu seems to be "rotated" through only a few items.

The other issue I have had, twice, is that if you order anything with poached eggs (eggs benedict at brunch and a brussel sprout salad), the eggs are not anywhere near what I consider to be poached. The white is very runny. I didn't know that this was their interpretation of pouched and I suggest that they warn those ordering menu items with poached eggs in advance so that, those who do not expect runny egg white in poached eggs, could be forewarned to ask for the eggs to be cooked more. I noticed that, when this happened to me on two occasions, several diners sitting around me also had the same issue and sent their food back.

Overall, the food is good- but differentiation and fair warning about the eggs is needed.

  • Visited February 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank DAnelle B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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165 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    96
    42
    17
    5
    5
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
72 reviews
49 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
“Enjoyable Evening”
Reviewed April 2, 2013

Dined here on 3/30 and had a wonderful experience. The deviled eggs were a good start, followed by a carrot bisque and lamb short ribs which were both excellent. Entrees were a striped bass and pork both of which were good portions and prepared well. The best part of the meal though were the cocktails. Offerings were inventive and well prepared. Service was attentive but not pushy and atmosphere suited both casual and business-casual attire. I would highly recommend and would dine here again. I would recommend a reservation on a weekend. We made a reservation and saw several people directed to the bar that didn't have one.

  • Visited March 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank goinback2hi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
virginia
Level Contributor
50 reviews
20 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
“Good food - too much salt”
Reviewed March 4, 2013

A good place, start to finish. Staff did a good job. Younger, but well trained. Great choices, with local/seasonal emphasis. Just need to check the salt level.

  • Visited February 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Travelten
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
14 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Great to see local ingredients prepared so well”
Reviewed March 3, 2013

My wife and I visited River and Rail on a Friday evening and had a wonderful experience. We did not have reservations so we decided to eat at the bar. While the restaurant is small and was quite busy, we found the overall experience to be pleasant and enjoyable. We split a few appetizers and each had a salad as our entree. The bartender recommended wines that paired well with our selections. The smoked trout rillette was exceptional and was the highlight of our meal. The prices are reasonable considering they source their food locally and make their preparations using fresh ingredients.

  • Visited December 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank HelloStanley
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Virginia
Level Contributor
82 reviews
44 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
“Good Local Food”
Reviewed January 19, 2013 via mobile

Heard a lot of buzz about this new restaurant in the Crystal Springs section of Roanoke. Went with my wife and two other couples. The menu pulls food from local sources, which is very nice. The oysters were good. I did like the open kitchen; it was entertaining just watching them work. The service was great. I thought the menu was a bit confusing. It is laid out like so: For the Table then Firsts then Seconds. I was confused about the "For the Table" and "Firsts" Was one an appetizer etc? However the waitress was very kind and explained nicely. Probably just my ignorant self. I ordered the Trigger Fish. I thought it was a tasty dish done well, but it did have some small bones. (I hate fish with small bones) Again, I should have asked. My friend thought his dish was too small. (I think he just eats too much). I do wish they did have a small dish section to share or just get an appetizer and small dish in order to keep the price down. Overall, it was a good restaurant, and I will probably eat there again.

Helpful?
Thank CJDVirginia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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