Food Check-in: Poe’s Public House

Posted on September 29, 2014 by

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Poe's Public House opened Aug. 29 on The Corner across from the University of Virginia.

Poe’s Public House opened Aug. 29 on The Corner across from the University of Virginia.

Charlottesville is a city built on history. There’s also a lot to offer in the realm of locally crafted food and drinks. New restaurant owners Joe Fields and Mark Graham have decided to open a venue that combines historical and local foodie flavors.

Fields and Graham opened Poe’s Public House on August 29th on The Corner near the University of Virginia. Fields and Graham purchased the bar and grill, formerly home to No. 3, on May 1st.

“We spent the summer fixing, cleaning, and remodeling the place up with the intention of being complete by the time the students returned,” Fields said.

Fields said part of the inspiration for the restaurant came from his love for renowned 19th century author and poet Edgar Allan Poe — one of the University of Virginia’s earliest students and among its most-acclaimed attendees. While visitors to the University can catch a glimpse of Poe’s former dorm room (No. 13) on the West Range, Fields said he wanted to pay homage to Poe’s achievements.

“We wanted to focus on his donation to society with the arts,” Fields said. “I have always been a fan of the arts and finally have a venue to display it.”

Poe's Public House pays homage to poet Edgar Allan Poe.

Poe’s Public House pays homage to poet Edgar Allan Poe.

Fields added that the stress from his previous job at a funeral home in Charlottesville had taken its toll and he was ready to explore a new venture.

“During a conversation with my sister and brother-in-law, they expressed an interest in investing in a business. We were really interested in the restaurant business, specifically in this university area,” Fields said. “Once we walked in to this place, we were like, yep, this is it.”

Fields said the menu at Poe’s is a spin on Southern food with “some of the usual suspects” as well.

“One thing we are most proud of is how fresh our menu is,” Fields said. “All of our recipes are made in house.  No frozen dump in (the) fryer items.  We are also planning on offering absinthe as a cocktail option, among a few other specialty cocktails.”

Poe's Public House offers several draft beers, including a vast selection from local breweries.

Poe’s Public House offers several draft beers, including a vast selection from local breweries.

Although Poe’s is located on The Corner directly across the street from UVa., Fields said the bar and grill is designed for everyone to feel at home.

“I mean students are our main bread winners, but in general we want anyone that walks through our doors to feel comfortable and relaxed,” he said. “The students are what we are focusing on now and the reason for that is the previous business had a less than desirable reputation.”

Fields recommends that anyone that visits Poe’s tries the barbecued meatloaf as well as the fried pimento cheese, which is the restaurant’s spin on a Po-boy.
Poe’s also has several craft beers with more than half of the selection coming from local breweries.

Poe's offers Southern food with a twist in the space formerly home to No. 3.

Poe’s offers Southern food with a twist in the space formerly home to No. 3.

“The feedback so far has been extremely positive,” Fields said. “Our patrons seem to really like the changes we have made.”

Poe’s opens for lunch during the week at 11 a.m. and is open for brunch at 9 a.m. on Saturdays and Sundays. The restaurant closes at 2 a.m. on the weekends.

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Posted in: food, New to Cville