The Perfect Carving Board

Carving Board Café, 624 Albemarle Square, Charlottesville, Virginia

By Patricia B. Mitchell, 2006.

The Carving Board Cafe

How marvelous it is to find a restaurant at which they seem to be doing everything right! The Carving Board Café (see map and their website) in Charlottesville, Virginia, is such a place.

Candice Liptak and Justin Van Der Linde (who both attended Johnson & Wales University in Norfolk, Virginia) opened this casual-style sandwich shop about a year ago. It is small and modest in appearance, but the food is absolutely top-quality, the service friendly and prompt, and the decor well-thought-out.

First, the decor: Comfortable, utilitarian tables and chairs, and a lovely mountain-view mural by Liptak's stepfather make the dining area pleasant enough; and the ladies' restroom has pretty lavender paint in different graduations of shade ascending the walls. Very artistic!

Liptak is the “up front” person — she greets customers and takes the orders with a happy, upbeat attitude. Meanwhile, Van Der Linde is in the kitchen assembling the orders. Soups and salads are made on the premises daily. The meats are baked, smoked, and roasted in-house. [The restaurant offers catering services. Call 'em at (434) 974-9004.]

My Roasted Turkey on wheat ($4.00) was perfect. The bread was fresh and, thankfully, not sweet. There was lots of finely sliced turkey, and the requested veggies were fresh. It could not have been better.

Henry's Seafood Chowder ($3.50) was excellent, he says — plenty of corn and small pieces of seafood in a thick, tasty base.

David's Steak and Cheese ($4.75) was big and delicious.

If we had been looking for something to complain about, I don't think we could have found it at the Carving Board Café.

The Carving Board Cafe

The Carving Board Cafe

The Carving Board Cafe

Seafood Chowder.

The Carving Board Cafe

Roast Turkey on wheat.

The Carving Board Cafe

Steak & Cheese.