I’ve tried to think of about three different ways to start this review, but it always boils down to one simple thing: go to Verde! I’m a big fan of Panera because of their fresh breads, sandwiches, soups, and atmosphere. My only complaint about Panera has been that they don’t serve wine. Verde does.
My wife and I had been meaning to dine their for quite a while, and finally we did last week. We were greeted soon after entering and walked up to the counter to order our food and a bottle of wine. The man waiting on us offered to put our bottle of Sauvignon Blanc in a bucket of ice to keep it cold (which we accepted) and invited us to choose a place to sit as he would bring our food out to us.
The atmosphere in Verde is what I love – there are a couple of high tops with chairs, a couple of tables with booths and chairs, and then a pair of very comfortable arms chairs and a couch with tables that are perfect for enjoying your meal, some wine, and the company you’re with. We chose the two arm chairs.
Our food was soon delivered and it was delicious. I chose their Italian Panini and my wife chose the Chicken Pesto one. Each was freshly pressed and warm when brought out to us. The only ones in the restaurant at for dinner (I assume they get more business at lunch than dinner), we were able to enjoy our meal and each other’s company in peace.
The menu at Verde isn’t huge, but it does have a wide range of foods that should appeal to most tastes. Their wine selection is very impressive and they have wine available by the bottle or the glass, or to be taken with you, as well as small selection of beer.
The only complaint that I can levy against Verde is that all of their food is served in to-go style packaging as opposed to plates when you’re dining in. I don’t know if this will change, but I suspsect it’s because they offer delivery service and most of their diners are workers on their lunch just running in to grab something to take back to the office.
If you’re in the West End of Richmond and looking for something like Panera but not Panera, I really do recommend Verde. I’ve only been once, but I’m already planning my next trip there. Check out their selection online at: http://www.verdefreshfood.com .