A search for consistency at Revolutionary Soup

The pros and cons of a Corner staple


Revolutionary Soup's Corner location is open 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays. The restaurant is closed on Sunday.

Molly Wright | Cavalier Daily

There’s nothing better on a cold day than a quick, warm bowl of soup to fill you up before you head out to the library in the pitch black dark — even if it’s only 5:30 p.m. When it comes to soup places in Charlottesville, one restaurant basically has a monopoly and that would be Revolutionary Soup. Rev Soup on the Corner recently underwent renovations and a slight menu change this past summer. As someone who has been going to Rev Soup since first year and always thought of it as mediocre, I was excited to see what these new changes would bring. I sadly report, however, that I have not found much variance from last year and continue to have issues with the restaurant. 


That’s not to say that Revolutionary Soup doesn’t have its own set of pros. If you’re craving a grilled cheese and bowl of tomato soup for lunch one December day, then Rev Soup has you covered. They have a ton of delicious sandwich options to choose from — the Turkey Bacon Club is a consistent favorite, and I’m fond of the Fresh Mozzarella & Pesto one as well. The student combo of a soup and a grilled cheese is also a decent deal for just $7.95.

Another great aspect of Revolutionary Soup’s menu is the side salads that you can get with either a soup or sandwich. If you’ve maybe already had a few too many Bodo’s orders that week but also don’t want to pay $9 for just a Roots salad, then Rev Soup is your place. Their innovative salads, such as their Tarragon Apple Chicken Salad or the Gulf Coast salad, paired with a grilled ham and cheese or Lamb Curry soup will be sure to have you satisfied in no time.

However, one of my qualms with Rev Soup is the menu, particularly their lack of chicken noodle soup. I’m pretty sure that students are sick with a cold at least 70 percent of the semester. Especially with flu season approaching in the winter, Rev Soup would absolutely profit from adding this item to the menu. 

In addition, for a place that’s literally named Revolutionary Soup, why do they only feature around four soups every day? I’ve never seen someone order the Classic Miso soup or the rosemary potato soup. Maybe Rev Soup should swap them out for chili or a type of beef broth soup instead of having such a predictable and limited selection. 


My biggest problem with Rev Soup has consistently been the wait. One time last year I was desperately craving soup and a grilled cheese at night and rushed over to Rev Soup before I needed to start studying. With only about three people in the restaurant, I waited around 30 minutes just for my two items. I got so frustrated with other instances of long waits that I stopped going to Rev Soup altogether last year. However, I decided to give it another try after the summer renovations. Yet, I have still had to wait around 30 minutes to receive my sandwich. I’m not sure what the kinks are in the kitchen, but the staff needs to work these out. Personally, I don’t want to expect my sandwich in about seven minutes, when in reality it’ll take 20. If I need to factor in time to wait for my meal then I’d like to know beforehand. The inconsistent waits are frustrating for students on the go. 


A big pull of Rev Soup are its convenient locations, with storefronts both on the Corner and the Downtown Mall. If you’re a second-, third- or fourth-year, then the Rev Soup on the Corner is probably right on your way home from class. Parking is also close by, as the Rev Soup on the Corner is right below the 14th Street Parking Garage. 


Rev Soup is great for students because it is decently inexpensive. The student combo of a miso, potato or tomato soup and grilled cheese is offered as one of the restaurants deals for around $7.95. Usually you’ll spend anywhere from $6 to $15. If you just want a soup, you can almost always keep your purchase under $10, with the free addition of a side apple or piece of bread.

I’m a frequent customer at Rev Soup and usually come away from my meal satisfied. I never thought the combo of a quesadilla and tomato soup would be so delicious until I tried it at Rev Soup. The restaurant also makes a mean lamb curry that is just the right amount of spicy and a great choice if you’re craving a heartier soup. Overall, in my opinion, the restaurant is a staple on the Corner. However, just because Rev Soup has a monopoly on the soup industry for students in Charlottesville, I don’t think that should allow it to slack on consistency and service. 

Molly Wright is a Food Columnist for The Cavalier Daily. She can be reached at life@cavalierdaily.com

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