By Chelsea Rose Moore
When traveling to an exotic destination for the summer isn’t in the cards, it’s still important to prioritize getting away and recharging. Fortunately, going away for a weekend, or simply a day, can be a refreshing change of pace.
Opting for a “staycation” is a fantastic way to be a tourist in a local town, while helping us relax and explore fun destinations. It can infuse a new energy into our normal routines and help us see life with a fresh vision.
We’re here to help! We’ve curated a guide through horse and hunt country, and are taking you through Clarke County’s Berryville. We’ve done the work for you – simply follow our lead, and we’ll show you where to shop, dine, and explore. Berryville might be tiny, but what it lacks in size, it makes up for with its big heart. We’re positive you’ll love it, so hop on the road and enjoy the ride.
Your staycation both begins and ends in Middleburg, but the rest of our guide showcases Clarke County’s gems.
Middleburg Common Grounds
We have a lot of ground to cover today, so we’d recommend starting early. Stop in Common Grounds for a breakfast sandwich and a pastry – some tasty fuel for the journey ahead. Head down 50 West for half an hour, and you’ll find yourself in the charming and historic Clarke County.
Middleburg Common Grounds is open daily and is located at 114 W. Washington
Cordial Coffee Co.
In its short life span, Cordial Coffee has become a centerpiece for cultivating community in Clarke County and the surrounding areas. Owners Brandon and Kaitlyn Belland are deeply passionate about coffee, and their attention to detail and devotion to their craft has helped them build a trusted and successful brand. Both a roastery and café, the made-to-order, gluten-free waffles are not to be missed (insider tip: ask what the seasonal batter is — it’s always delicious!).
As supporters of local makers, Cordial showcases a rotating selection of local art, and brings local musicians to entertain guests with acoustic tunes.
Cordial Coffee Co. is open daily and is located at 8 S. Church Street, Berryville. For more details, visit cordialcoffee.com.
Clarke County Farmer’s Market
With your Cordial Coffee in hand, stroll down the street to the Clarke County Farmer’s Market and meet the county’s farmers and makers. Enjoy the live folk music and food samples, while chatting with the friendly vendors and catching a glimpse of Clarke
County’s big heart.
Don’t leave the market without saying hi to the friendly folks at Persimmon Ridge Farm. They offer a full selection of pork cuts, delicious sausages, fresh eggs, and bacon that is pretty close to heavenly. We’d also recommend visiting Rooster Dirt Farm for gourmet mushrooms, and Chilly Hollow Farm for all your produce needs.
The Clarke County Farmer’s Market runs May-October, from 8am-12pm. It is located at 100 S Church Street, Berryville. For more details, visit clarkecountyfarmersmarket.com.
Love to shop? You’re in luck. Berryville is filled with unique shops, from a quirky bookstore to a plethora of antique shops. Stroll down Main Street, and you’ll easily fill a Saturday morning browsing the memorable specialty shops.
Modern Mercantile is at the top of my list, and is my go-to spot for gifts for loved ones (and let’s be honest, for myself too). Filled with whimsy and perfectly on-trend, it’s a well-curated space made for dreamers and doers. The window displays alone are sure to peak your interest and usher you inside
Modern Mercantile is open daily, and is located 13 S. Church St., Berryville. For more information, visit modernmercantilellc.com.
My Neighbor and Me
A trip to Berryville isn’t complete without a visit to My Neighbor and Me. As a fair-trade gift shop, they sell hand-crafted goods made by artisans across the globe. Shopping here is an inspired experience, and TripAdvisor even rates it as the top thing to do in Berryville. We’re big fans of the beautiful African Market Baskets hanging outside the shop. Watch their website for fun events, like their
monthly community drum circle.
My Neighbor and Me is open daily and located at 15 E Main St., Berryville. Find out more at myneighborandme.com.
The Tea Cart
In need of a little British flare in your life? The Tea Cart is your next stop. A traditional English tea room, this has become a popular destination for bridal showers, baby showers, birthday celebrations, and a ladies’ afternoon out. With an extensive offering of loose-leaf teas and delicious scones, this place is filled with nostalgia and elegance.
Our favorite item on the menu is the Royal Ascot, an assortment of finger sandwiches, soup, scones with Devonshire cream and jam, and a selection of sweets – accompanied, of course, by a bottomless pot of tea.
The Tea Cart is located at 16 W. Main Street, Berryville. Reservations are preferred. For more information, visit theteacartva.com.
For a more casual lunch, stop by Los Wingeez, a new restaurant specializing in Peruvian chicken. Order the wings, sandwiches, or tacos (we’re partial to the fish tacos topped with chopped mangos). Enjoy your food while sitting outside, and soak up the sights and sounds of Berryville’s Main Street.
Los Wingeez is located at 24 W. Main St, Berryville. To see the menu and to learn more, find them on Facebook @loswingeezberryville.
Mt. Airy Farm Market
With full bellies, we’re headed outside the Town of Berryville, and back into the
country. This time, we’re loading up on local goodies to take home.
Mt. Airy Farm Market is an indoor market dedicated to supporting local farms. Open year round, the market offers a great selection of local wines, beers, cheeses, meats, and baked goods. If you need an easy dinner, the market offers BBQ, salads, sandwiches, and other pre-made options, like lasagna, chili, and shepherd’s pie. Chat with the friendly staff and browse the aisles to see the best of what Clarke County has to offer.
We highly recommend grabbing a bottle (or two!) of Falling Bark Farm’s hickory syrup. Made by a husband and wife team in Clarke County, hickory syrup is a unique and delicious product offering rich health benefits. We love it served over French toast and pancakes, but it works beautifully in savory marinades (think hickory glazed salmon).
Mt. Airy Farm Market is open daily and is located at 8204 John Mosby Hwy, Boyce. Find more details at mountairymarket.com.
Blandy Experimental Farm
As the State Arboretum of Virginia, there’s 172 acres of stunning gardens, native Virginia plants, and walking trails. Put your walking shoes on and soak in the beauty of the great outdoors. Download a free app to your smartphone and participate in an audio tour of the arboretum, which features 11 stops throughout the gardens.
The arboretum is lovely in the summer, and is particularly near-and-dear to my heart. On a warm morning several years ago, my now-husband asked me to be his wife on top of a grassy hill. We were surrounded by apple blossoms and flowers, and celebrated the occasion with a picnic spread.
Blandy Experimental Farm is open year-round and is located at 400 Blandy Farm Lane, Boyce. To learn more, visit blandy.virginia.edu. Watch the website for a list of events, walks, and classes.
King St. Oyster Bar
Your day finishes with the spinach artichoke dip and a dozen oysters from one of Middleburg’s hottest restaurants. Wind down with a glass of wine and breathe deep – you’ve successfully completed your staycation. Cheers to that!
King St. Oyster Bar is located at 1 East Washington St., Middleburg.
Barns of Rose Hill
If you aren’t quite ready to leave Clarke County, head back into town for one last memorable stop. As a performing arts venue and community center, the Barns is the town’s arts and music hub. The Barns offers film screenings, art exhibits, workshops, bluegrass jams, and concerts for every music lover
The Barns of Rose Hill is located at 95 Chalmers Court, Berryville. Find hours and event details at their website