With a son at VCU, we find ourselves in Richmond a few times each semester. It's usually only for a couple of hours or a drop-off or pickup -- we live near DC, so this is not a major trip -- but it's nice to take him out. Plus sometimes we have time to kill between VCU events. We're looking for two things, perhaps separately:
* Richmond institutions, the kinds of places no one should leave Richmond without visiting. These could be dives, ice cream parlors, chili parlors, donut parlors -- Richmond's equaivalent of, say, the potato donut place in Charlottesville, or Ben's Chili Bowl in DC, or Graeter's Ice Cream in Cincincinnati.
* Restaurants not terribly far from VCU with moderate prices and good food. We have found a place on Main in the Fan where we had a terrific breakfast; sorry, don't remember the name. It was in a brick building that had been renovated, had an upstairs, and was across the street from a funky-looking place with what appeared to be Japanese lettering.
We found a so-so sports bar/restaurant also on Main. The pizza parlor down in Shockhoe Bottom (that triangle spit of land) was good, And we've tried Thai and cajun in Carytown. (We found a fantastic chocolate store in that retro-looking shopping plaza on Cary Street.)
What else should we try? On a couple of other trips, we wound up eating at Tara Thai and Famous Dave's -- places we like, but we can drive half-a-mile from home and go to those, so it's not an adventure.
All tips appreciated!