Not so very long ago, the epitome of Richmond dining was a revolving rooftop restaurant called Top of the Tower, where the steaks were mostly forgettable and the view of downtown showed more trees than skyscrapers. Ethnic food meant a plate of spaghetti at The Capri. Ham biscuits were de rigueur at every social function, and the bar was stocked with more bourbon than wine.
These days, with an explosion of restaurants bringing worldlier meals to every neighborhood, Richmond has begun to pride itself on becoming a food town. But not so fast: There's still room for improvement, and some of Richmond's most influential food professionals of the past 25 years say they're still looking for culinary kismet within the city's bistros and cafes.
Those same professionals have helped us get to where we are today. Just who has shaped our eating habits the most during that time span? Here are the key players, with thoughts toward the future of food in a city that's ripe for even finer dining. -- Deveron Timberlake