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Eat

4005 Atlantic Ave. (40th St.) Send to Phone
757-965-2472 | Make Restaurant Reservations | Menu
The oceanfront's best casual fine dining begins where the boardwalk ends.
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Local Deals: 120 * 90

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Open
Dinner nightly
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Eat Restaurant Review

: Eat is exactly what you’ll want to do at this funky little beachside bistro. The attitude is playful but the food is serious, befitting an upscale restaurant where the boardwalk ends. Chef-owner Erick Heilig prepares a standout starter of Octopus 3 (grilled, “salami,” and a salad with sweet potato noisette, pickled leek, harissa and sherried gastrique), while the vegetable lasagna is colorfully engineered with grilled zucchini, toasted pine nut ricotta, charred yellow tomatoes, and smoked almond romesco. And don’t miss the Nandua blue crab cake. Heilig describes it as mom’s; considering his mom is Marilyn Heilig, former executive chef at downtown Norfolk’s 219, that’s saying something. Talent is in the family DNA. Sister Holly Evans designed the cool graphics. For dessert, try seductively smooth cappuccino pot de crème. Even at the peak of tourist season, Heilig doesn’t dumb down his menu for the sunburnt crowd but adds whimsical twists like sliders, a mini Hereford beef burger, and an oyster po’ boy. Come cooler temps, expect specials such as Brunswick stew with rabbit, local butter beans and cornbread croutons as an appetizer, and entrées like the duck duo (crispy leg confit, seared breast, roasted mushrooms, pumpkin purée and, in another nod to mom, her peach preserves). Creative flair and eye-catching, flavor-packed platters are always in season here.

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