With the sound and sight of the occasional F18 fighter jet from the nearby Oceana Naval Air Station buzzing overhead, we ate al fresco next to the water and dined on seafood caught fresh that morning at Rudee’s on the Inlet Restaurant and Cabana Bar.
Originally designed to be a bait and tackle shop, this local favorite has served patrons since the early 80s. The building, a replica Coast Guard station, overlooks Rudee’s Inlet which lies between Lake Rudee, Lake Wesley, and Owl Creek on the south end of Virginia Beach.
With seating both inside and outside on a deck over the water, Rudee’s on the Inlet is a great casual place to eat, drink, and relax with lots of great seafood dishes and specialty drinks.
One outdoor dining feature that I especially enjoyed was the “glider seats”; covered booth seating for six that rock and sway back and forth. There aren’t a lot of them, and they are in high demand so, get here early to grab one of these tables or prepare to wait your turn!
Location: Rudee’s on the Inlet Restaurant and Cabana Bar, Virginia Beach Oceanfront Southend Marina District, 227 Mediterranean Avenue, Virginia Beach, Virginia
The Menu: As is expected for a restaurant by the water, the menu features a lot of seafood! Everything from the sea including oysters, shrimp, clams, crab, lobster, scallops, and fish. But land lovers aren’t entirely left out as there are also menu selections such as burgers and steaks.
A few favorites to try: Oysters Rockefeller (12 for $21.99) – Rudee’s Oysters Rockefeller are so famous that they were featured on the Food Network! These oysters direct from the Virginia Eastern Shore are topped with spinach, parmesan, cream cheese, bacon, and scallions and baked to succulent perfection.
Crab Bites ($12.99) – Mini Chesapeake Bay lump crab cakes, served fried or broiled and served with a choice of tartar or cocktail sauce — the perfect size for sharing — or not (wink).
Hush Puppies ($5.99) – Fried cornbread fritters are the thing to have when you are in the South! These deep fried little savory dough balls remind me of doughnut holes and are a classic, addictive, must order!
Fried Calamari ($10.99) – Lightly battered and deep fried squid rings served with a choice of spicy marinara or homemade spicy volcano sauce.
Rudee’s Burrito ($13.99) – For something a little different this burrito comes with your choice of blackened tuna or chicken. Slathered with a house-made salsa and wrapped entirely in a soft, flour tortilla. The burrito comes with black bean rice, corn chips, guacamole and sour cream.
Additional Notes: Rudee’s on the Inlet offers daily specials, special game day events, as well as happy hour and daily sunset early bird specials. A kid’s menu is available.
Pinterest: File this seafood find on your favorite Pinterest board.
Photo credit: ©Mary Chong; used with permission.
Disclosure: The author received a complimentary meal courtesy of Virginia Tourism. This post contains affiliate links. Clicking through for additional information or to make a purchase may result in a small commission being paid. By doing so, you help support this site and its authors, and we thank you.
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