We are a group of eight 30-something Chowhounds from DC heading to C'ville for a Bachelorette weekend. We eat at all of the great DC restaurants regularly and are looking for someplace upscale but not too stuffy as we want to be able to let our hair down and enjoy ourselves after a grueling day of wine tasting (ha!)... From what I can tell, the best spots seem to be C&O, Oxo, L'Etoile, Cassis, Hamilton's... am I missing any? Which of these, do you think, would give the best balance of great food plus great fun? Any good spots for pre- and/or post-dinner drinks? And if we are dressed casually from our day of wineries, would we feel underdressed at any of these?
And about that grueling day of wineries... recommendations fairly close to C'ville proper? Several of us have done the group of wineries to the west (Cardinal Point, King Family, White Hall), which we enjoyed. We generally prefer smaller, more intimate wineries (NOT Barboursville, for example), although we can bend on that for great wine (Kluge, for example -- is worth it?). And finally -- which wineries would be best for a picnic on the grounds?
Thanks C'ville Chowhounds!