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Best of Virginia 2022

Every January, Virginia Living Magazine asks its readers to name their favorite businesses and attractions in a write-in poll. The magazine features them in its Best of Virginia issue, which is designed to guide readers to all the best places in five different Virginia regions. Locals and visitors voted for favorites, and Staunton really shines as a place to visit and do business. Read on to find out who our local favorites are award winners in various categories. If you haven’t yet visited, what are you waiting for?


Staunton’s historic downtown, a winner in the category of Historic Site, is walkable and low-key. It offers plenty of parking and an opportunity to shop for a variety of unique items.

Book Store – 3rd Place: The Book Dragon Shop
Fine Jewelry Store – 3rd Place: H.L. Lang & Co
Florist – 2nd Place: Honey Bee’s Florist
Men’s Clothing – 1st Place: CFO Trading Company
Historic Site – 1st Place: Downtown Staunton

Entertainment & Events

Staunton’s American Shakespeare Center’s Blackfriars Playhouse received recognition as a Performing Arts Company as well as a historic theater. This recreation of Shakespeare’s theater offers year-round performances, behind-the-scenes tours, and scholarly talks. You should also try to catch a play at ShenanArts, where since 1981, locals have pooled their substantial talents.

Entertainment for Adults – 3rd Place: Visulite Theater
Historic Theater – 1st Place: American Shakespeare Center’s Blackfriars Playhouse
Museum – 1st Place: Frontier Culture Museum
Performing Arts Company – 1st Place: American Shakespeare Center; 2nd Place: ShenanArts

Best Food & Drink

Though a small city, Staunton has much to offer the culinary scene. A full 15 of our restaurants earned recognition in categories ranging from Steakhouse (Mill Street Grill and The Depot Grille) to Mexican Restaurant (Chicano Boy Taco) to Vegan/Vegetarian Restaurant (Cranberry’s Grocery & Eatery). Shenandoah Pizza, and Cocoa Mill Chocolate were feted for what they do best. We stood out for wine at Yelping Dog Wine and cocktails at Zynodoa. And of course, if you come to Staunton, you can’t skip dessert at The Split Banana or Kline’s Dairy Bar. Other winners included Byers Street Bistro, Kathy’s Restaurant, and Wright’s Dairy-Rite.

Breakfast/Brunch Restaurant – 2nd Place: Kathy’s Restaurant
Burger Joint – 2nd Place: Wright’s Dairy-Rite
Fine Dining – 2nd Place: Zynodoa
Food Truck – 3rd Place: Gloria’s Pupuseria
Ice Cream Shop
– 2nd Place: Kline’s Dairy Bar; 3rd Place: The Split Banana
Indian Restaurant – 1st Place: Taste of India
Mexican Restaurant
– 2nd Place: Chicano Boy Taco
Outdoor Dining – 2nd Place: Byers Street Bistro
Pizzeria – 3rd Place: Shenandoah Pizza
Seafood Restaurant – 1st Place: Blu Point Seafood Co.; 3rd Place: Mill Street Grill
Steakhouse – 1st Place: Mill Street Grill; 3rd Place: The Depot Grille
Restaurant for Vegans or Vegetarians/GF – 3rd Place: Cranberry’s Grocery & Eatery
Bakery – 3rd Place: Reunion Bakery
Chocolatier – 1st Place: Cocoa Mill Chocolate
Farmers’ Market – 2nd Place: Staunton Farmers’ Market
Wine Shop – 1st Place: Yelping Dog Wine
Cocktails – 2nd Place: Zynodoa
Winery – 3rd Place: Barren Ridge Vineyards

Outdoor Spaces

The Shenandoah Valley is practically overrun with beautiful views, and according to voters, none are better than the sweeping vistas of the Valley when viewed from nearby sections of the Appalachian Trail and the Skyline Drive.

Hiking or Biking – 1st Place: Appalachian Trail
Park – 1st Place: Skyline Drive

Congratulations to all the winners, and thank you to everyone who voted. Get out there and support Staunton’s favorite businesses and attractions.

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