Nestled within the heart of Virginia, Norfolk's culinary scene is a treasure trove of gastronomic delights. From the fresh catch of Chesapeake Bay to the hearty comfort of Southern cuisine, the city's top restaurants offer a symphony of flavors that cater to every palate. Whether you're seeking waterfront dining experiences, the warmth of a family-owned eatery, or the innovation of farm-to-table freshness, Norfolk's dining landscape is as diverse as its history. In this article, we explore the crème de la crème of Norfolk’s food scene, ensuring your next meal is nothing short of extraordinary.
Casual American eatery with a broad menu of comfort food, pitas & salads in a colorful cafe setting.
My husband and I come here all the time. I finally got one of their salads. I really don't think I'll get another. First time ever that I picked my food more than ate it. But hey, it could have been a not for me kinda salad. The raw peppers made it taste off, and some of my lettuce might have been on the near bad. First time I've been disappointed at No frills. But everything else I've eaten before was awesome.
5 / 5
This is a great all around place, the food is great and the service matches. Its a nice cozy spot with what I can only wish home cooking could match. The dishes are pretty basic but the food is wonderful. They have your standard sandwiches and burgers with normal entries. Great mixed drinks if your into that The staff is very nice and seats you very quick Only real complaints is the bathroom seems to always have a wait
5 / 5
Great place to have lunch or dinner. The atmosphere is always good, and the food always hits the spot. On this visit I had the salmon and fried shrimp. Both were delicious. Continue to provide great service and great food. I'll always return. I just wish they were open later. lol
5 / 5
The food was Amazing. I mean so good! The cornbread tasted like cake. The Flounder fish was so good and hot. With the old bay fries.
4 / 5
Today I stopped by with my family and I was honestly not super impressed. I received my food fairly quickly but it would appear that the only seasoning known to the cook who cooked my meal was salt. Almost every part of my meal was seasoned with only salt except for the pork. The scalloped potatoes were the biggest victim as they were both incredibly mushy and incredibly salty. The service was fairly mediocre too as our waiter seemed more interested in turning the table than actually interacting with us. I think we only saw him three times during the entire meal except when the checks needed to be collected. I heard good things about this place but, don’t think I will be back
3 / 5
Long-running, romantic spot with quaint decor & a menu of specialties from many European countries.
Amazing food and experience. First, they served us hot bread with homemade cheese and an apple. Delicious and unique. We ordered the lentil soup and the potato and leek soup. They were incredible. Especially with it being cooler outside, they came out piping hot and we’re hearty and delicious. We ordered for our entrees the Serbian Goulash and a chicken special with a creamy delicious sauce. The customer service there is outstanding. They make you feel so at home and are so attentive. The chef brought out some delicious veal for us to try too. She is so friendly and from Czechoslovakia. I loved the atmosphere too. It is intimate and romantic. Highly recommend! Must try!
5 / 5
Walked by this interesting restaurant facade on Granby st and was welcomed by a hostess outside. Looking for something unique, I went in and discovered a wonderfully European atmosphere. The owners are chef's from the Czech Republic, all dishes are homemade and mine were wonderful... I told my waitress that I wanted something unique, and she recommended the potato and leek soup, followed by Serbian goulash. I never had these before and they were awesome. I followed the mean up with an apricot crepe that was insanely delicious and light. The owners made a point to check in on their patrons. Such a cool restaurant!
5 / 5
Authentic and delicious. An absolute must to try if you're in the Norfolk area, this place was the highlight of my trip here! Service was incredible, and the food was superb. I heartily recommend the goulash (any variation) and the escargot. The roast duckling was also delicious, with plenty to bring home! It was my first time having this kind of food and the lovely waitress took the time to explain to us what the dishes consist of and how to eat them. Couldn't have had a better experience, will definitely come back the next time I'm in town!
5 / 5
Went to the Monastery Restaurant on Friday evening with the wife. It was very nice there. The atmosphere and waiter were great. The owener/chef came out and greeted us and spoke about the food. I had the stuffed cabbage, and wife had the Cordon bleu chicken. Both were nice to eat. This will be a restaurant that we will make another trip to.
5 / 5
I can't believe this is my 1st time @ the Monastery! Our server BRIE was amazing. Introduced me to a cocktail John made to satisfy my lightweight, sweet leaning drink request, with a tasty Relaxer! She also made great recommendations that were cooked to perfection, so full of flavor: the house-made dressing for the appetizer House Salad, the deliciously flavored Escargot 😋 the main courses: Serbian Goulash and the Hungarian Gypsy Pork Cutlet! Both excellent!! Lastly, the Blueberry Fruit Dumpling was sooo good! Can't wait to return to try the Veal & Steak entrees! The low lights & super cozy atmosphere was perfect for this late January evening. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!! 🥰
5 / 5
Chic, modern eatery & bar serving a fixed-price menu of European-inspired farm-to-table fare.
I sought out Chartreuse Bistro based off of reviews prior to visiting the Norfolk area. I am really glad I was able to stop in for lunch. The service was incredible & the menu was unique in a way that makes you want to go back to see what else they come up with. I had a great time & wish the owners the best to keep doing what they do.
5 / 5
The staff was so personable and made this restaurant seem like a fancy night out but also as comfortable as if I was at home on my couch. The food is incredible and I love how the menu changes everyday based on what is fresh and locally available. So fun!
5 / 5
My husband and I celebrated our anniversary at Chartreuse. The outstanding service began with the call for reservations and didn't end until we left that evening. When making my reservation, I explained to the hostess that my husband had a food allergy and that it was a special night for us. When we arrived, our menus Were made just for us with "Happy Anniversary" printed on them. While ordering with our server, he was aware of the food allergy and made sure to communicate it with the chef without needing a reminder from us. The food was incredible! It was quiet in the restaurant (we were there on a weeknight). The dining room is open and Modern. The meal was a bit on the pricey side but it was worth it and we were celebrating. we will surely return there for another amazing meal. Chartreuse, if you are reading this, thank you for making our anniversary even more special!
5 / 5
B Brooks Day
I love this place so much! Probably my favorite restaurant in Norfolk. Incredible food that’s always fresh and surprising. Great drinks (get the DC Gin and Tonic if you’re a G&T fan) and very personal service. We love coming here.
5 / 5
Dawn Chumley (Dawn of Color)
Some of the freshest salmon, oysters and rockfish I've ever had! Delicious seafood all around and very friendly service. Highly recommend :)
5 / 5
Quaint, urban fixture with creative Italian dishes, plus local beers on tap & an eclectic wine list.
Ended up here on a recommendation from s waitress in Lacrosse Wisconsin. This was her favorite place. It was fantastic. Tiny tiny place, 80% of the seating is at the bar, which is pretty cool. The portions are about twice the size i expected. Hard to get reservations but well worth it. The pork cheek pasta was everyone's favorite.
5 / 5
Love then authenticity of the food and the quaintness of the locations. Sat at the bar and the bartender was amazing! The wait for the food was slightly disappointing (~50mins) but we really enjoyed the flavor! I'd definitely go back again if I'm in the area
4 / 5
Love this place. The goose and rig was so good. Me and my bestie went three time in one week that’s how addictive and delicious the food was. Good bruschetta as well. Must try restaurants in the area
5 / 5
Me and the wife sat at the bar tonight. The two gentlemen working the bar were Excellent very knowledgeable about the menu and super friendly. The presentation and the food was next level. The cheese plate and Salami Plate were amazing. Only room for improvement for me was the dessert we had just wasn't for us but overall everything was excellent. Great job Luce. The drip drop drink was 🔥 and the lemon Shrimp were excellent. Perfect combo for me.
5 / 5
We were in Norfolk for a few nights for work and my wife commissioned me to find a good Italian restaurant. Looked online and decided on Luce but unfortunately they were booked the night we had free so I left a voicemail expressing my interest in dining there. Much to my surprise I received a call later that afternoon and we were in! That was just the beginning of a great experience. The hostess was super friendly and our server, I believe Crystal B, was Outstanding!! She made great recommendations and her detailed description of the wines was impressive. As one reviewer had mentioned it takes a little while to prepare the food, our server mentioned that to us as it was due to most entrees being made from scratch, Well worth the wait!! Definitely will return. *****
5 / 5
We had the most excellent visit to 350 Grace. Chef Moats culinary skills were outstanding, and each dish was expertly crafted and beautifully presented. The variety of flavors and textures in each course was impressive, and the quality of ingredients used was evident in each bite. Chef and his team flawlessly executed the timing for each course, making the overall flow of the meal seamless. Overall, it was a memorable evening with exceptional food and service, and I would highly recommend this experience to anyone looking for a truly elevated culinary experience.
5 / 5
Wow, what an amazing experience. I cannot believe this is a dedicated gluten free establishment. Truly a dream. Everything I tasted was amazing. I absolutely loved the fried James oysters it was by far the best thing off the menu. The shrimp and grits with andouille sausage was delightful. The shrimp was cooked to perfection. The drink was great and the complimentary bread pudding was more than I could ask for. The ambiance was elegant and sophisticated. The service was top notch. Definitely a place you want to be dressed for. Highly recommend!
5 / 5
What an amazing experience. The atmosphere and decor is beautiful, open and inviting. The staff are so great, food is crazy good. The best shrimp and grits I have had from Virginia to California, drinks were great and the head chef is amazing. Looks to be black owned and operated which is pretty great. If you want kicked up southern food or just want to have a dinner EXPERIENCE you must try this place. I couldn't have asked for a better night to have a birthday dinner with my wife. MUST GO HERE AND SEE WHAT YOUR LIFE HAS BEEN MISSING!!!! if they have more than 5 ⭐ I would select them all, just can't say enough good things about the experience.thankbyou so much.
5 / 5
Great experience! Even with a small staff they never missed a beat! The food was flavorful, fresh, and well proportioned. We had the trout, shrimp and grits, crab cakes(full lump), salmon app, arugula salad. Then topped it off with tasty dessert.
5 / 5
Amazing black owned Restaurant. The food and service is top notch. More of a smaller more intimate atmosphere. Food was made to order. I had the pork loin and my wife had the Salmon. Both were so delicious and everything in each dish just cane together so perfectly. At the end we received two complimentary desserts, caramel bread pudding and a chocolate mousse. Again, DELICIOUS! Drinks were awesome as well, everything about this place is a must try. Reservations are highly recommended.
5 / 5
Hotel-based Italian eatery with sleek, modern decor serving Italian fare & wines in 3 pour sizes.
Dinner here was delicious! The bruschetta was crisp and tasty. I ordered the grilled octopus for my first course and then the carbonara and added shrimp. The octopus was wonderful and had a nice spice to it. The carbonara was delightful with the soft egg and the smoky flavor! The pasta was cooked perfectly. We were so full from dinner that we passed on dessert, but the dessert options did look good. 3 guests enjoyed the salad as a first course. One ordered the cioppino and it was good, but one mussel came out closed. (Do not eat shellfish that hasn’t opened when cooking; it means it was dead before cooking) She said something to the server who said he’d get on it, but must have forgotten. It should have not come out on the plate. One ordered the braised short rib pasta. Everyone really enjoyed their meal. We had a nice table with large heavy and comfy chairs seated near the piano, which was nice, but when the pianist was playing made it hard to hear each other speak. The music was good.
4 / 5
I wish I had come here prior to leaving the Norfolk area in 3 weeks. This place has a classy and comfortable vibe, and our server Harrison was fantastic. Things can happen unexpectedly, but if the server mitigates it without question or effort, it’s like it never happened. Harrison did exactly that. The bruschetta was delicious and their house bread is soft and warm. I care for meat on the bone (only order filets) but the pork chop was very tender and flavorful. The sirloin was tender and perfect. If you have the chance to hear Frank perform there he is amazing! Retired Marine who is a master of his craft with a fantastic personality. Absolutely a must if you’re in Norfolk.
5 / 5
Went in for a Christmas Eve dinner. Our server was great with recommendations. The restaurant ambient is nice, on par with a fine dining experience. The presentation of our plates were marvelous, but slight disappointment on the taste. The pizza was bland for a hand-crafted Italian thin crust. The foraged mushroom pasta was very flavorful but the texture of the pasta was a lil disappointing, did not taste like a handmade pasta. Still appreciate the meatless option regardless. Special shout-out to the pizza expert who work at the pizza station, his pizza making process was a passionate performance!!!! That’s what I called ‘ work with heart’! ❤️
4 / 5
Loved the food, the drinks and the service. The Sax player was on point. Beautiful date night with my hubby.
5 / 5
Maria Fernanda Mariner
Just came in for a girls night out, first time ever to Varia. The ambiance was stunning and my bartender really made everything perfect! His name was grant and was so welcoming and made the most tasty espresso martini. And he’s HOT.
5 / 5
Historic site turned causal bistro offers a New American menu with Moroccan & other global accents.
Absolutely perfect experience. Fall cocktail list was excellent. I could hardly decide. Went with the pomegranate french 75 to start with our apps and then the fall sangria with dinner. They had a pumpkin old fashion and a caramel apple mule that I would have loved to have tried. Next time. Food was great! Baked brie with fresh berries and mazze board were excellent. I had the crab florentine with lobster ravioli special. My teens had the chicken sandwich and the burger. Both raved about the meal. It is so adorable in there too. They sat us in the corner which was great for my service dog. To which the staff were so professional and did not even react to her. No attention was given! Very refreshing. Our server...Annie I believe or Anna...she was absolutely wonderful. She knew the menu. Offered suggestions and was sweet as can be. Professional, kind and friendly. A young lady kept coming and checking on us as well. Making sure we were all happy with our experience. Desserts are made in house too! Absolutely delightful! Can't wait for our return visit.
5 / 5
Is there a 10 star option?? This place was great! Outside covered dining area, great staff and the food… WOW! I recommend the Wagyu Brie Burger- cooked medium. You will NOT be disappointed!
5 / 5
I feel fortunate to have found this gem of a restaurant during my brief stay in Norfolk. The ambience was trendy. The service was exemplary. Kate was attentive. Finally, the menu was perfect as it offered variety of delicious farm friendly meals. As a vegan eating with a non-vegan it offered a variety of choices for both of us. My only critique is that the cauliflower steak could be a drop firmer but it was still out of this world.
5 / 5
Went to Omar’s with my friend for Restaurant Week and had a wonderful 3 course dinner for $45. We found it reasonable, the food was delicious. We had a wonderful time!
5 / 5
This review is overdue. I have eaten here dozens of times in the last few years and never had a bad meal. It’s casual but special and elegant but not expensive. The owner is involved on a daily basis and it shows in the details. The food quality is always great and there are always new things to try. One thing that has stayed on the menu for a long time is the potato chip encrusted flounder which is a must try. It’s the lightest possible frying and it’s always good. Many of the staff have been there for many years. The service is always on point, attentive but not overbearing. I’ll be back again soon.
5 / 5