Ask Lauren: Weekend lunch downtown, crazy Bloody Marys, and craft cocktails

This week Lauren guides us through the perils of lunch downtown on a weekend, finding a crazy Bloody Mary, and unearthing new craft cocktails.

Now, through the magic of the internet, you too can ask Lauren your myriad food-related questions. Well, technically, you can leave your questions in the comments below, I’ll ask Lauren, and then I’ll let you know what she says. It’s like the three-legged stool of restaurant recommendations.

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My mom and I are catching a Saturday matinee performance at the Carpenter Center. I’m in charge of finding a venue for our pre-theater lunch, ideally within walking distance; I’ve been instructed that lunch should be “nice.” But, everything seems be closed on Saturdays! Are we better off heading to Carytown, or are there options for a weekend lunch downtown?

Max’s on Broad is open for lunch seven days a week and definitely has a nice, Can Can-esque vibe (but Belgian!). It’s a half mile from the theatre, which sounds like just the right amount of walking to let you say yes to the poutine and a couple of Belgian beers. Enjoy!

I want to go to a Bloody Mary bar that has every topping imaginable. I want a meal in a glass. I want shrimp, bacon…maybe a slider on top? A little dancing man perched on my celery would be great. Help a girl out!

OK, I can’t promise dancing men atop pint glasses, but Casa del Barco has a fantastic Bloody Maria bar that has just about anything you’d ever want to drop in your morning beverage–including pork cracklings. Why is it called a Bloody Maria bar? A Bloody Maria is traditionally made with tequila instead of vodka, but if your life turns into a country music song after too much tequila they’ve got vodka and gin at the ready.

Craft cocktails…I’m into them. I feel like I have tried out the top places that everyone always says to go, and I want something new. Any suggestions that haven’t popped up in Southern Living?

The Rogue Gentlemen is opening this Friday in Jackson Ward. We haven’t been yet, but there are promises of a fantastic craft cocktail list and an ambitious menu. Heck, a costumed man even delivered a cocktail to us to promote the new establishment a few months ago, so that’s gotta mean something. If you get there before we do, let us know what you think!

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Ross Catrow

Founder and publisher of RVANews.

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