Saturday, March 28, 2009

A Semi-Failed Trip Downtown

On a search...

Hi friends,
This afternoon, some friends and I took the trolley to Cville's "downtown mall" area to check out Spudnut Shop, an old donut joint that's been around since the 60s. Okay, so it's not located IN the downtown mall, but rather on a road nearby. I read that the donut shop is part of a dying nationwide chain, but the Cville location has been a staple in the town for years. My homegroup leader H actually introduced a dozen Spudnut donuts to us girls during bible study and I pretty much gained 25 delicious lbs that night. So some of my friends and I went on a journey to find the shop, which isn't reached easily by trolley.

Long story short, we got lost, ran across a bridge, found the shop, and watched the owner lock up and drive away for the day. We missed donuts by one minute, and much grief filled our hearts (and stomachs). The trip was only a semi-failure, however, because I got to explore the area with amazing friends and eat some good dumplings.


We returned downtown and explored the area, stopping by a charming bookstore that sells used books for cheap. We also found cool slate panels where anyone can leave his/her mark.

The goodies I picked up at the bookstore. Total cost = $14!

Jewelry displayed at one of the many vendors chillin outside.

S drawing a groovy "Peace & Love" sign

Shamelessly promoting myself... But I mainly wanted to say Food = Love, I promise! Pls note chicken drumstick inside heart.

Grumbling stomachs, ACTIVATEEEEEEE! The group chose to get food from Marco & Luca dumplings, Five Guys and Christian's Pizza, all located in the same part of the mall. Marco & Luca is a dumpling shop that has a very small menu, but that makes for fast service.

S ordering some noodles, since she can't eat meat during Lent. Good vegetarian option foshodo

I ordered the famous panfried dumplings (~7 for $3) and Sweet & Sour Spicy Noodle (~$3.50?). The dumplings, as always, were DELICIOUS. Hot, absorbing delicious sauce, crispy on the outside and meaty on the inside. Oh btw, everything comes in flimsy styrofoam boxes. Heh. No big deal though.

The noodle dish is basically thin spaghetti noodles (Bertolli brand, I believe) served with a soy/sweet chili-based sauce, sliced apple, and cilantro. It's nothing AMAZING, but it's pretty refreshing. I find the sauce a bit too sweet, and I know I could make the same cold noodle dish for less than a dollar at home. I'll eat it if it's in front of me though!


So check out Marco & Luca for a quick, delicious bite that's guaranteed to be cheaper than most places downtown. Always order the dumplings. ALWAYS! And I'll update you on the Spudnut Shop mission after our next attempt.


Spudnut [Coffee] Shop
309 Avon St, Charlottesville, VA
(434) 296-0590
Obviously closes by 2pm, that's all I know for now. It seemed like 2pm was the closing time for every day.

Marco & Luca
112 E Main St Charlottesville, VA 22902
(434) 244-2605
M-Sa, 11am-3pm, 5pm-8pm


  1. i think the spud shop sells some donuts at the farmer's market too....

  2. found your blog by accident but i LOVE it!

    i, too, went to school in cville and now live in the midwest and ...i almost cried at your pics of marco and luca's - one of my favorite places in cville.

    spudnuts is not to be missed - and if you're downtown, go to revolutionary soup!!! they have weird hours tho, so check before you go...

    so jealous! nice blog!

  3. oh and p.s. you can buy the dumplings that they use at marco and luca's at this little asian grocery store/food co-op's not easy to recreate the sauce tho...

  4. laughlikeyoumeanit, I CANNOT FIGURE OUT WHO YOU ARE!!!!! reveal yourself ;)

    B, thanks! i'm sure i'm gonna miss marco and luca's after i graduate also... sigh. and spudnuts is delicious!!! i wanna try their items other than donuts also. as for rev soup, i've been meaning to check that out. but lately i've been reluctant to make the trek (aka the extremely short trip, but i'm a lazy bastard).

    and marco and luca's dumplings aren't homemade? i need to edit my entry if that is so! still delicious though..

  5. hey! I just came across your blog randomly and am having a great time reading all your posts =)
    Marco and Luca definitely uses frozen dumplings.. the chinese kind that you can find at asian stores.. Their sauce, on the other hand, is what's worth going there for. Apparently the recipe for the sauce is kinda complex..

  6. hey anet,
    thanks for stopping by! i'm glad you enjoyed my posts :) and thanks for the info on the dumplings!! so everyone seems 100% sure that the dumplings are store-bought.. i had just assumed that they made the dumplings ahead of time and froze them.

    thanks for the info!! come back soon~