And you thought we're just heading to po-dunk USA? Well, this past Sunday's New York Times' travel section had a write-up on good eats in Virginia Beach! Wrote Mimi Sheraton,
Beautiful eating, however, is the lure for me whenever I am beside the Chesapeake shores, in my experience the source of the world 's pearliest and most toothsome crab meat. That, after having sampled such highly touted specimens as Maine's peekytoe, the West Coast's Dungeness, Alaska's kings and snows, Florida's stone crabs (which I knew as Morro crabs in pre-Castro Cuba) and the crustacean delights of Venice, Louisiana, Kamchatka and Shanghai. As with lobsters when I am in Maine and oysters in Brittany, it was crabs that I built my daily meals on a recent five-day quest in Virginia Beach.We'll have to see what we can do.
Crustaceans aside, this entertaining seaside city is a repository of some of our country's earliest history as well as a relaxed beach-and-boardwalk resort, stylistically and economically hospitable to families. My goal, however, was to have as much of that silky, sweetly briny meat as possible, in the simplest and most classic preparations - steamed whole and spicy or mounded into puffy, meaty crab cakes, or as the tiny, supple soft-shells, preferably sautéed or lightly fried. The only noncrab tradition that fits such feasting is Hatteras clam chowder, the clear, clam-broth-based soup of the Outer Banks, modified neither with milk nor tomato and laden with clams, celery, onion and, usually, carrots, all cut in varying sizes from the chunkiest to the finely minced.
I'd been thinking maybe Captain George's, a seafood buffet place. Less expensive, perhaps, than Mimi's tastes. Here's what the Virginia Beach Convention & Visitors Bureau has to say about George:
Only one place has truly captured the essence of the oceans. Captain George’s legendary buffet has been heralded up and down the East Coast as one of the best collections of fresh seafood and regional cuisine available. With over 70 items, fresh seafood cooked every way imaginable, traditional Greek dishes and desserts, beef and pasta dishes, and fresh vegetables are just a walk past the array of incredible buffet items will ensure a return visit.Get ready to eat, eh?
Located in rural Pungo, south of the resort area, Captain George’s has long been a place to bring friends all of your friends and kick back in a casually elegant dining room. You can enjoy the fare from the buffet, order smooth and icy fruit beverages from the bar, or select a vintage from our extensive wine list.