Southern Living magazine has released its The South’s Best reader survey results, and Richmond is the South’s best ... well, everything, it seems.

In its fourth annual South’s Best awards, which highlight “readers’ favorite Southern destinations and experiences,” Richmond was named one of the “Top Cities in the South” (No. 9) and a “Best Food City” (No. 3). RVA was also recognized as a place with a top neighborhood, The Fan District (No. 2); a best bar, The Jasper (No. 3); best local restaurant, Mama J’s (No. 4); best historic hotel, The Jefferson (No. 3); and best new hotel, Quirk (No. 5).

“There’s plenty to love about this one-time Capital of the South that goes far beyond its four centuries of history. Today, Richmond’s reputation for cool is often what attracts visitors to the area,” the piece reads.

But the biggest honor, a No. 1 spot, went to chef Lee Gregory’s Church Hill restaurant Alewife, which was named the best new restaurant in the South.

It’s been quite a run of best honors for Alewife. The Daily Meal recently named it No. 93 on its “101 Best Restaurants in America” list, a follow-up to the food and drink website naming it one of the best new restaurants last year. Alewife was also named one the best new restaurants in the U.S. by GQ and Esquire last year.

All and all, “Richmond garnered eight Top 10 rankings across categories, including six top 5 rankings,” according to a news release. The rankings were compiled from an online survey of readers that took place from July 10, 2019, to Sept. 16, 2019.

“At Southern Living, we’re passionate about celebrating the extraordinary experiences that define Southern hospitality,” Sid Evans, editor in chief of Southern Living, wrote in a statement. “Our goal is to identify the destinations our readers are loving the most right now — places that represent the very best of the South.”

Southern Living also highlighted a dozen eateries as places to eat in Richmond, including Longoven, L’opossum, Sub Rosa, Little Nickel, The Roosevelt, Kuba Kuba and GWARbar. (Many are temporarily closed or offering takeout only during the coronavirus crisis. All expect to reopen fully for service as soon as it’s safe.

Here are the full rankings for categories that include Richmond.

Southern Living’s 2020 South’s Best List of Top 10 Cities

1. Charleston, S.C.

2. Savannah, Ga.

3. Nashville, Tenn.

4. New Orleans

5. Austin, Texas

6. Asheville, N.C.

7. Alexandria

8. Atlanta

9. Richmond

10. Tallahassee, Fla.

Southern Living’s 2020 South’s Best Awards:

Richmond Top 5 Rankings:

  • No. 1 Best New Restaurant: Alewife
  • No. 2 Best Neighborhood: Fan District
  • No. 3 Best Historic Hotel: The Jefferson Hotel
  • No. 3 Best Bar: The Jasper
  • No. 4 Best Local Restaurant: Mama J’s
  • No. 5 Best New Hotel: Quirk Hotel

Richmond Top 10 Rankings:

  • No. 7 Best Food City: Richmond
  • No. 9 Best City Overall: Richmond

kpeifer@richmond.com

(804) 649-6321

Twitter: @KarriPeifer

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