A few times per year -- typically Mother's Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter -- I hear from readers who want to know which restaurants will be open for the holiday and offering special meals.
This is a hard question to answer thoroughly as there are so many restaurants in our coverage area and most of them don't send us information about their holiday offerings. However, I'm going to share a handful of options based on the intel I have received as of this time.
I recommend calling ahead for reservations no matter where you decide to go.
Shula's 347 at the Sheraton in Roanoke will host its first Easter brunch buffet this year. According to a press release from Shula's, the menu will include "more than a dozen selections, from an omelet station to carving stations featuring honey-glazed ham, herb-rubbed prime rib, tenderloin tips and scallops prepared to order. It also includes such favorites as Shula’s signature salads made to order, a raw bar with oysters and snow crab legs, macaroni and cheese, pan-seared salmon, and French cut chicken." Desserts are also included.
Time/prices: April 20. $35 per person, or $19.50 for children 5-13. Children under 5 dine free. A la carte dining is also available. Families can eat at any time between 11 a.m.-3 p.m. 540-366-5220.
The Bank Food and Drink in Pearisburg will offer a special menu on Easter Sunday, including deep-fried Coca-Cola brined chicken livers, roasted strawberry and arugula salad, potato sourdough French toast, smoked pulled pork hash, mushroom ravioli, pan-seared Virginia rockfish and carrot cake bread pudding (OMG). Reservations highly recommended.
Time/prices: 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Entrees range from $13 to $17. 540-921-2981.
Pomegranate Restaurant in Troutville will have an Easter Sunday brunch buffet that includes biscuits and gravy, quiche florentine, farm breakfast sausage, broiled salmon, glazed ham, sweet potato souffle, carrot cake and more.
Time/prices: 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Adults, $24.99; children 11 and under, $9.99; kids ages 3 and under, free. 540-966-6052.
Hotel Roanoke will host two buffets, one in the Roanoke Ballroom and one in the Regency room. Folks with kids will want to check out the ballroom, where there'll be Easter characters and a special buffet for kids. Want a quieter, more adult experience? Head to the Regency Room. One or both buffets include soups, salads, chilled seafood, charcuterie and cheese, breads, carving station with short rib and leg of lamb, and a gut-busting number of other tasty options.
Time/prices: Regency Room seatings, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Roanoke Ballroom seatings, 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Adults, $42; children under 12, $19.50; kids under 3, free. 540-985-5900.
If I hear of other Easter dining options, I will add them to this blog entry. Meanwhile, have I missed a great place for Easter dining? If you know of a place, please share it in the comment section.