Press

From Our Guests

We had a really great dinner last night for Valentine’s Day! I’m a food service person- and rarely eat out on valentine’s because of the utter chaos it generally is. Last night was a real winner- Speedy service, tasty food, everything that was supposed to be hot was hot, and everything was seasoned really well— the squid salad being the outstanding part of the evening. everything went really smoothly! Just wanted to let you know how much we appreciated all your hard work.
— Maya Vincelli (Facebook)

Imagine the perfect date night at a restaurant: an atmosphere conducive to the mood that movies tell us should be set filled with its dull roar of conversation, drinks being carefully prepared by skilled bartenders, mini tea lights adorning each of the tables in the shop creating a warm glow that calms you while keeping the food’s subtle, but much appreciated presentation in view as the plates sit between you and your date as a playlist consisting of “Dancing Queen” and other conversation-starter songs helps to assuage any nervousness you have on your first date. And of course, there’s pizza. Lots and lots of homemade quality, thoughtfully made pizza.

Victoria Aracri has done a wonderful job turning her mobile shop into a full-fledged, bustling business in the Bottom. As a patron of both the mobile oven and now that I’ve moved back from Austin recently, the restaurant, I can say the only thing missing from such excellent food was the skillful design of the tables and hardback chairs. The staff is still just as genuinely personable and knowledgeable as before, but seem to be floating over the ground knowing that they are just as happy as their seated customers.

I was first captivated by the Fig and Pig around 2012, and 3 years later can say that not much has changed in regards to the recipe or my feelings about such a great pie. My date tried the bucatini and loved it so much she wasn’t embarrassed by the fact she took much too big of a bite and had a noodle dangling from her mouth to her plate for a few moments. Okay, she was a wee bit embarrassed but that’s besides the point.
— Christian D. (Yelp)

I can’t say enough good things about this new spot in Shockoe Bottom. We arrived at 7:00 on a Saturday and the place was packed but without feeling frenetic. The space is gorgeous and features a wood-burning pizza oven in the dining room. A large l-shaped bar adds to the ambiance.

Menu items, classified as small and medium plates, pasta and pizza are written on large chalkboards in the dining room, indicating that they change frequently. We shared the lamb and pork meatballs as a starter—they were delicious,complemented by a fresh tomato sauce but not drowned in it. I had the lamb pappardelle and my partner the sausage, tomato and ricotta pizza. Both were amazing. I could have eaten both myself.
Knowledgeable, warm and welcoming service from our server, Kay, rounded out an evening we hope to soon replicate. And, there’s parking in the back!
— James M (Yelp)

Old school Italian dishes. You won’t find this kind of food anywhere else in RVA. Get down here now, it’s amazing!
— Joe Lajoie (Facebook)
Full disclosure: I’m not related to anyone at NB. Just thought you should know. I am a New York food-obsessive who took his first trip to Richmond. I was completely delighted by the food and service at Nota Bene. Food first: we ordered appetizers: a fennel salad (lemon, good olive oil, fennel nearly translucent, good pecorino cheese, tiny sliced red chiles, salt) and roasted cauliflower — dishes done with great expertise and delicacy, but which were solid down-home real Italian food. (Not, I might add, the expected continent-size veal or chicken disc with an excess of olive oil and garlic: Richmond natives will know the “famous” place I refer to, whose name does not cross my lips.) Then, a middle course of lovely light focaccia with roasted cherry tomatoes and creamy — almost aerated — cheese. On to a pork ragu with ricotta over a maze of pasta (again the mix of big flavor and delicacy) and my garlic sausage over tiny butter beans (possibly a few Alsatians had wandered over the border). Finally, we were asked if we’d like to try a new dessert — alcohol-softened biscotti to be dipped in a small jar of creampuff filling. I would go back there right now, but I am woefully back in New York.

I think that some people wrongly undervalue this place. After all (said in a haughty tone), they sell pizza. But the pizzas we saw going to other tables were so intriguing — in appearance and aroma — that this isn’t Domino’s by a long shot. Nothing on the menu had that stale affect of by-the-book Italian places: there was no trace of minced garlic by the jar anywhere. And we were told that some dishes had sold out — which, to me, means fresh food, not a walk-in freezer. The ingredients were extremely fresh and beautifully prepared.

A nice wine list, comfortable chairs, and the most delightful service. I see on Yelp that some people have moaned and carried on, which I can only ascribe the elevated levels of enlightenment in their bloodwork. We were greeted with real smiles, and our conversational interchanges with Victoria (the owner! walking around and talking leisurely with people! not yet a star of a television cooking show! a genuine person!) and our server Kay — just delightful.

I’d suggest this as the first, second, and third stop for anyone who likes to eat, who enjoys food with flavor (a whole board of interesting specials) that isn’t over fussy. May they prosper.
— Michael S (Yelp)