While we're at it, here are some elements to consider that would ratchet up our collective pride in the restaurant scene even higher. And don't think we haven't noticed that you heeded our requests in previous years. Thank you.
Post-theater dining. Cities with theater scenes the caliber of Richmond's have something we don't: restaurants serving dinner post-play. Plenty of theatergoers have no intention of early bird dining at 6 to make an 8 o'clock curtain. Could we have a few restaurants near theaters doing late evening food service to give theatergoers a place to dine and talk about what they've just seen? — K.N.
Local sourcing that doesn't end at the wine glass: Many places that now carry local beer still don't have a single Virginia wine. Outdated notions of what Virginia wines were need to be addressed, and restaurants who tout their local sourcing need to consider the hypocrisy of wine lists that don't support Virginia's wineries. — K.N.
Lower price-point joints: Maybe it's part and parcel of not wanting to live in a neighborhood where everyone's in the same economic bracket, but I'd like to see more inexpensive restaurants opening in the same neighborhoods as more upscale ones. I'm talking more places like 8 1/2, Doner Kebab or Citizen, where students and artists can afford to eat inexpensive, well-executed food without settling for a chain. And they have to stay open at night. In Jackson Ward, Nick's International Market and Lift fit the bill, but both close come evening. — K.N.
Incentives for adventurous eaters. Chefs love to cook offal, but many of them claim that their customers won't buy it. Take a page from Washington's Bar Pilar, which for a time ran a happy hour menu of nothing but $4 offal plates. By enticing customers with heart, brains, cheeks and sweetbreads creatively prepared and ridiculously inexpensive to try, the kitchen created future offal eaters while having a chance to show off and promote nose-to-tail eating. — K.N.
Bathroom parity: If your establishment has unisex bathrooms, how about designating one for women and one for anyone else? Hardywood, let's start with you and move on to the others. I'm telling you, it works in other cities. — K.N.
A decent breakfast scene. Richmond chefs can cook breakfast food. Their skills are on display every weekend for brunch. I'd love to see a few more options for creative weekday breakfast than the paltry few we have now. — M.F.
Decent pizza by the slice. Little shops with inexpensive quality pizza available by the slice. — M.F.
I would embrace a true distillery in Richmond with tours and readily available, local product. — R.M.
A cheese shop, post haste. — R.M.