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24 Crows

650 Zachary Taylor Highway, Flint Hill, VA - (540) 675-1111
Posted By Michael Stern on 10/19/2012 7:27:00 AM
The story goes something like this: About a dozen years ago, a local B&B got so well-known for its meals that the couple who ran it transformed it into a restaurant called Four and Twenty Blackbirds. Business was good, so good that they eventually burnt out from all the work it takes to run a respected destination eatery. But retirement didn't suit them, so they returned to open 24 Crows, an unassuming little place with a pared-down menu of mostly just sandwiches.

Don't let the apparent modesty of 24 Crows fool you. There are masters in this kitchen, and while it is basically a sandwich shop (and really interesting art and craft gallery), it is run with the care and expertise of a four-star restaurant. "I suggest you put a sweater or hat on a table, just to claim it," suggests the host when we walk in, advising us that the dozen or so seats indoors and on the front porch get occupied very quickly at lunchtime. He explains to us how service works (order, eat, pay), precisely describes dishes about which we have questions, and generally makes us feel right at home the way a welcoming maître d' might do.

The "club trout" sandwich: Long fillets of pan-fried trout are complemented by thick strips of apple-smoked bacon, plus lettuce, tomato, and spiced mayonnaise. This smoky symphony gets messy in its tall-domed challah roll, but is truly campfire-good. Chicken sandwich: Between thick tiles of toasted whole grain bread, slices of roast chicken are crowned with sharp Vermont cheddar cheese and dressed fig chutney and creamy mustard.

If you like ice cream, that is reason enough to make a pilgrimage to 24 Crows. It is homemade and super-creamy. Apricot comes laced with plenty of chewy little orange nubbins. Belgian chocolate is profound, sheer rapture for the ice-cream-loving chocoholic.

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Scorecard

5 - Overall: Legendary - Worth driving from anyplace
Overall: Legendary - Worth driving from anyplace
Club Trout Sandwich
Italian Veggie Sub
Roast Chicken Sandwich
Smoked Chicken Sandwich
Ice Cream
Fried Green Tomato Sandwich
Flank Steak Sandwich
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Reviewers Photos [Upload Your Photos]

Smoked chicken with cumin-spiked BBQ sauce and house-made cole slaw on a challah bun: delish!
"Smoked chicken with cumin-spiked BBQ sauce and house-made cole slaw on a challah bun: delish!"
Michael Stern





Between the halves of a toasted ciabatta roll are flaps of grilled flank steak with sauteed red peppers and onions and plenty of melting Maytag blue cheese.
"Between the halves of a toasted ciabatta roll are flaps of grilled flank steak with sauteed red peppers and onions and plenty of melting Maytag blue cheese."
Michael Stern


Not your ordinary BLT. The Club Trout sandwich adds a crisp-edged fillet of Idaho trout to the formula.
"Not your ordinary BLT. The Club Trout sandwich adds a crisp-edged fillet of Idaho trout to the formula."
Michael Stern


Heaven is a scoop of apricot ice cream on top of a barely visible scoop of Belgian chocolate.
"Heaven is a scoop of apricot ice cream on top of a barely visible scoop of Belgian chocolate."
Michael Stern


Roast chicken, sharp cheddar, and fig chutney are just some of the elements that put this sandwich into the stratosphere.
"Roast chicken, sharp cheddar, and fig chutney are just some of the elements that put this sandwich into the stratosphere."
Michael Stern


The Italian Veggie Sub: tahini, grilled eggplant, roasted red peppers, arugula, tomato sauce, Parmesan cheese, and a sprinkle of sweet balsamic vinegar.
"The Italian Veggie Sub: tahini, grilled eggplant, roasted red peppers, arugula, tomato sauce, Parmesan cheese, and a sprinkle of sweet balsamic vinegar."
Michael Stern


Note how thick and succulent the discs of fried green tomato are in this sandwich. Their tart snap is beautifully balanced by melty cheddar.
"Note how thick and succulent the discs of fried green tomato are in this sandwich. Their tart snap is beautifully balanced by melty cheddar."
Michael Stern


Here you see the entire indoor dining room at 24 Crows. There also are a few tables outside on the porch.
"Here you see the entire indoor dining room at 24 Crows. There also are a few tables outside on the porch."
Michael Stern


A destination eatery in the heart of beautiful Rappahannock county.
"A destination eatery in the heart of beautiful Rappahannock county."
Michael Stern


In addition to table seating there are three stools at the counter.
"In addition to table seating there are three stools at the counter."
Michael Stern


In the background at the right of the club trout sandwich are lovely finch houses for sale. They are among the large selection of really interesting crafts on display.
"In the background at the right of the club trout sandwich are lovely finch houses for sale. They are among the large selection of really interesting crafts on display."
Michael Stern


Before lunch is available at 11:30, your food choices are limited to only ice cream and scones. We picked out a blueberry nut (on the left) and a cinnamon, which were warmed up and brought to our table.
"Before lunch is available at 11:30, your food choices are limited to only ice cream and scones. We picked out a blueberry nut (on the left) and a cinnamon, which were warmed up and brought to our table."
Cliff Strutz


The Jamaican-Me-Crazy flavor is coconut rum ice cream with a ribbon of chocolate fudge swirl.
"The Jamaican-Me-Crazy flavor is coconut rum ice cream with a ribbon of chocolate fudge swirl."
Cliff Strutz



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