Restaurant Review: Zoes: Steak and Seafood

Tucked away in a corner near the oceanfront of Virginia Beach is a steak and seafood restaurant called Zoe’s. At first glance it doesn’t look like a high-dollar restaurant, but once you step inside, once you taste the food, and once you experience the service, you’ll understand why this has jumped to one of my top-rated restaurants in the Tidewater area. I went to the restaurant with mild expectations, I didn’t even look at the menu beforehand, I wanted to be surprised by everything.

We booked a table for two for 5:00 pm right when they open to beat the rush hour traffic and have a nice early dinner. As luck would have it, we were sat at the chef’s table in full view of the kitchen, watching them take tickets and plate orders.

Our waiter let us know that they are transitioning, and the executive chef and sous chef are new. I was thinking this is a great scenario to be at the chef’s table, with a new chef, and watching the kitchen dynamic work together. “Yes Chef”, “No, chef” could be heard all night, as food started to be served.

Before we ordered our entree the chef treated us to a deviled quail egg to kickstart our pallet. Then after ordering our appetizer and entrees, the chef sent us a seared scallop with a reduction sauce. The quail egg tasted good, about what I expected from a deviled egg topped with a bit of paprika, but the scallop was the real star.

The scallop was seared perfectly, and the sauced worked so well with the scallop because it wasn’t drizzled on top, so you could control how much you wanted to taste with the scallop. If I had to add one criticism, I would say the sauce was a little salty than what I would have preferred.

We couldn’t decide on the appetizers to get so we decided to try the chef’s tasting board. Artisan cheeses, like Vermont sharp cheddar and tangy goat cheese.The presentation impressed me, but the selections of meats and cheeses that paired perfectly with each other impressed me more. I only wish the olives it came with were seedless because picking the pits takes away from enjoying the rest of the board in a way.

Charcuterie boards are new to me only because I do not often have the interest in trying them during meals. Recently I have had more interest in trying them because I have been experimenting with local cheeses and meats from grocery stores near me. Expect to see some tips and tricks for starting your charcuterie boards in the future as I learn how to master these delicious boards!

Whenever I visit a new restaurant and lamb is on the menu, that’s normally what I get. Sometimes though, when in Rome…So I decided to get the 16oz ribeye with mashed potatoes and asparagus and my fiancé went with the 160oz NY strip with mashed potatoes and cooked carrots. I ordered my steak medium-rare and the cook on it was perfect. Although the steaks were cooked perfectly and tasted amazing, I did wish I had more seasoning on the steak as the sear from the grill slightly overpowered the rest of the flavor.

The plate presentation for both of the steak entrees was great. The sauce at the bottom tasted slightly sweet but was just the right amount to get some in every bite. I found myself spreading my delicious mashed potatoes along the bottom of the plate. The asparagus was okay, nothing special, but it did add a nice freshness to the plate. If you love a good ribeye like I do, then the 160oz ribeye is the way to go.

At the end chef treated us to a small dessert, lavender macaroon. It was a nice way to end the meal with just a light sweet dessert. We wanted to try the carrot cake or the crème brûlée, but we were to full to eat anything else.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

I was so happy I was able to visit Zoes, and more happy I went in blind not knowing the menu. The staff is friendly, we could tell the chef truly loves his craft, and the atmosphere is warm and inviting. Visit Zoes steak and seafood anytime of the year for a great meal.

Quick Review Summary (to long to read):

Zoes Steak & Seafood : 713 19th St. Virginia Beach, VA 23451

Zoes Steak & Seafood a high-end restaurant that serves steaks, lamb, and seafood. Located near the oceanfront in Virginia Beach, they offer a selection of wines and cocktails that pair great with any entree you choose. On site valet is complimentary, and when you call ahead to make a reservation tell them you saw them on GarwoodGrub!

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