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Mel's Cafe

Certificate of Excellence
American, Diner
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719 W Main St, Charlottesville, VA 22903-4570
+1 434-971-8819
10:00 - 23:00
Closed now
See all hours
Mon - Thu 10:00 - 22:00
Fri - Sat 10:00 - 23:00
More Info
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226 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Time of year
Showing 224: English reviews
Level Contributor
23 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed yesterday NEW via mobile

My kids and I walked here from the hospital. Was so glad to see lots of kid friendly options and the fried chicken and greens were the best I've had since moving to Virginia from Georgia. The bathrooms are outside of the building and the men's room was FILTHY!! Had my 4 year old son use a ton of hand... More 

Thank GAmomof3kids
Boynton Beach, Florida
Level Contributor
244 reviews
190 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 78 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 days ago NEW via mobile

Wonderful fried chicken, great smothered steak, no frills just solid great food just "like momma used to cook it" one of our stops when in Charlottesville Virginia

Thank Pedro C
2 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 days ago NEW

While I always enjoy eating at Mel's, I love his catering even more. It's so easy to plan a Labor Picnic or a 4th of July Celebration when you can rely on Mel to deliver the chicken and mac and cheese. The prices are fair, and the food is always plentiful.

Thank Eve S
Centreville, Virginia
Level Contributor
357 reviews
205 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 98 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 days ago NEW

I wish I had a place like this to visit while I was in undergrad. I had fried chicken and some sides, my friend had an open-face sandwich.

Thank scherzva
New Jersey
Level Contributor
311 reviews
211 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 70 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 weeks ago via mobile

Stopped in after a business meeting and before heading to airport. Had a hungering for real fried chicken and southern food. This is a proverbial hole-in-the wall place. Local as local flavor can get. If it had not been for TripAdvisor I would not have even known to look for it, or have found it. Small (only 7 tables) and... More 

Thank Hammbrook
Charlottesville, Virginia
Level Contributor
16 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 December 2016 via mobile

Stopped in with some fried chicken very disappointed as it tasted like fried fish Mel told me they change the oil twice a day must not have changed it when I had lunch

Thank baron1244
Suffolk, Virginia
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 November 2016 via mobile

Great food. Simple, good flavor, and affordable. Had the smothered hamburger steak with green beans and stewed tomatoes. About as southern cuisine as you can get

Thank dcl316
Dublin, Virginia
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 November 2016 via mobile

Saw this spot on TripAdvisor and decided to swing by on our way through Charlottesville. We were a little leary at first but the service was good and the food was even better. Some if the best fried chicken I've ever had! Don't let the first looks fool you.

Thank Cory B
Medford, Oregon
Level Contributor
22 reviews
11 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 November 2016

Great straightforward quality food. Had made to order eggs bacon potatoe breakfast just like mom made Exceptional friend staff and service

Thank maywoot
Level Contributor
29 reviews
21 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 November 2016 via mobile

I sometimes wonder why I ever went to any of Charlottesville's fine dining establishments when there's Mel's Cafe. Mel and his wife are extremely friendly and welcoming; the fried chicken is super; the collard greens, real "suthrin'; and the deep fried donuts, an unexpected treat. Try it.

1 Thank John B

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Charlottesville, VA

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Restaurant Details

Rating summary
  • Food
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
Average prices
American, Diner
Brunch, Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Restaurant features
Takeout, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Parking Available, Television, Wheelchair Accessible
Good for
Local cuisine, Kids, Child-friendly, Cheap Eats
Open Hours
10:00 - 22:00
10:00 - 22:00
10:00 - 22:00
10:00 - 22:00
10:00 - 23:00
10:00 - 23:00
Location and Contact Information
  • Address: 719 W Main St, Charlottesville, VA 22903-4570
  • Location: United States  >  Virginia (VA)  >  Charlottesville
  • Phone Number: +1 434-971-8819

Questions & Answers

Here's what previous visitors have asked, with answers from representatives of Mel's Cafe and other visitors
1 question
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Virginia Beach, Virginia
3 months ago

See all questions (1)

Questions? Get answers from Mel's Cafe staff and past visitors.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Do you have gluten-free options?
  • Is there a dress code?
  • Do you allow dogs on the outdoor patio?