Before Thanksgiving a friend asked me about great jazz clubs for her out-of-town guests. I completely dropped the ball and didn’t follow up with her (I’m sorry, Tracey!), but to make it up (if that’s possible), here’s a list that all can enjoy and use as a reference.
If I missed a shining star, please feel free to leave a comment to tell me so. Full disclosure: I don’t make the rounds on the jazz club circuit.
When one thinks of jazz, New Orleans is likely their second thought. Fortunately, Two Nineteen Restaurant in Alexandria brings that Cajun and creole feel to Northern Virginia. From the flavors to the sounds and even the décor, you might believe you’re on Bourbon Street rather than King Street. The food is obsessively locally sourced; whatever you order will be top-notch and fresh. The music has been hot every night of the week since 1979 in their Basin St. Lounge.
Roanoke’s music scene is quickly taking shape and people are beginning to notice. Head to Blue 5 for shrimp and grits and a good dose of Zydeco, blues, and jazz. It’s a spacious restaurant and venue, and if you enjoy craft beer, it was voted one of the Top 25 Best Beer Bars in America by CraftBeer.com.
Take your jazz experience up a few notches at The Carlyle Club in Alexandria. Dress up and step out for more than dinner and tunes. At Carlyle, you’ll get an elegant supper club experience.
With Hampton’s rich culture, it’s no surprise to find Comfort Zone Restaurant & Lounge thriving. Their menu is smothered Southern goodness, and jazz rifts ring out on Thursday evenings.
Stephen’s Jazz Café in Winchester has a great menu that includes gumbo and chicken and waffles, but in addition to that, there’s live music every Thursday, Friday and Saturday night. VIP seating is available.
In Staunton, it’s Mill Street Grill that jazz lovers enjoy. Every Wednesday night at 7 p.m. the old flour mill takes on a cool vibe.
Cheers to smooth jazz and good food.