Sunday, September 26, 2010

Pasha Mezze

Pasha Mezze opened its doors in 2003 and is a family owned, Turkish restaurant. It is conveniently tucked away on West 22nd Street in the Palace Station shopping Center in Norfolk.

The decor is very chic but not pretentious in any way. It felt very comfortable and inviting. The layout consists of a main dining area in the front of the restaurant which looks out onto the open kitchen and bar, a separate area in the rear which boasted exposed brick, hardwood floors and comfortable lounge seating, and outdoor seating is also available. We did not have to wait to be seated and were led to the quieter area in the rear of the restaurant.

There were many options on the brunch menu including omelettes, soups, salads and many Pasha signature dishes.

We chose the Turkish style french toast

which was served with whipped cream and strawberry preserves. I read a review that said they were served cold, but they were actually room temperature. They were a bit sweeter than regular french toast but still rather good.

I ordered a cup of the organic red lentil soup which was served with their homemade artisan bread. The soup was hearty and very filling. I've never had red lentil soup and I was interested in trying it and I found the taste to be creamy and very tasty.

I also ordered one of the Pasha signature dishes, the grilled chicken and poached eggs on potato cakes

this is a combination of marinated chicken strips, sauteed baby spinach and onions and mozzarella cheese layered on two potato cakes and topped with two poached eggs and a cream sauce. It may seem like there's a lot going on there but it seemed to all work together in a nice way. It had a very mild flavor and I felt it was seasoned very well. The portion size was extremely generous and as much as I wanted to finish the whole thing, I couldn't.

Pasha is such a cozy and comfortable restaurant. I loved the atmosphere and the service was excellent. Parking is very convenient in the shopping center.

Pasha's entire menu and operating hours can be found on their website.

340 W 22nd Street
Norfolk, VA 23517
(757) 627-1318

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Monday, September 6, 2010

yNot Pizza

After a morning full of running errands all I wanted to do was sit down and have a nice lunch with my daughter. Instead of the usual takeout I decided to take her to yNot Pizza. yNot is locally owned and one of the better choices for pizza in town.

The Kempsville location is roomy and very comfortable. Once you enter the restaurant you are free to seat yourself at one of the many tables or booths. Since I'm dieting, I had to quiet my conscience by ordering a small garden salad.

Now that my conscience is quiet. I was free to order the pizza!

I ordered a 14" pie with mushrooms, bacon and chicken. The bacon was for my daughter and the chicken was for me. The thin-crust New York style pizza was so fresh tasting and delicious. The chicken was not dry at all but tender and so yummy. Each ingredient complimented the others. It was just a really good pie.
Of course we didn't finish it because we had to order dessert.

yNot has a huge selection of homemade desserts. Cakes, gelato, cookies ... but I come for the chocolate cannoli:

Yes, I'm dieting but I couldn't resist. I have only had one cannoil better and that was in Boston's Little Italy.

My daughter had to have the four-layer carrot cake.

Everything about yNot is fantastic. The people are always friendly. The prices are more than reasonable. yNot offers the following dining options: order online, delivery, carryout and dine-in. I always prefer to dine in. The menu is loaded with Italian specialties and I'm sure one day I'll get around to trying each of them. However, today I was quite satisfied with the pizza.

5257 Providence Road
Virginia Beach, VA 23464
(757) 474-6000

YNot Pizza on Urbanspoon

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Finn McCool's Fish House and Tavern

This will have been my second visit to Finn McCool's on Princess Anne Road in Virginia Beach. The first time I went was right around the time that it opened. I was very impressed with the decor, the service, staff and food. It was definitely a homerun. I would probably classify my second visit as a triple.

The restaurant itself is beautiful. The furnishings and the decoration make for a very comfortable dining exerience. We were sitting close to the bar so it was a little loud but that is to be expected and it wasn't a big deal. It was early Saturday evening and there was no wait to be seated which I really appreciated. Our drink orders were taken immediately.

After the drinks came out we ordered an appetizer:

The crab dip came out and I thought it tasted okay. It is a blend of crab, artichokes, spinach and creamy cheese and served with the house flat bread. It wasn't bad but probably could have used a little more seasoning and a little more actual crab.

As an entree we ordered the crab-topped rockfish and the jumbo shrimp:

The rockfish was fine but I expected to see chunks of crabmeat on top of the fish. Instead I see the same crab dip that I had earlier spread on top of it. That was a little disappointing. I should be clear and state that the menu described it exactly as it came out. I just didn't read it carefully. My fault. I found the potatoes that accompanied the meal to be perfectly seasoned and very tasty.

The jumbo shrimp were okay as well. The rice on the side was bland and slightly overcooked.

Finn McCool's is a nice place in a great location. The servers were friendly, attentive and accomodating. I thought the prices were reasonable and I enjoyed my time there. It wasn't a spectacular dining experience but I would probably go back for drinks and appetizers.

3388 Princess Anne Road
Virginia Beach, VA 23456
(757) 689-0829

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