The Pines at Elizabeth City’s championship-style course was redesigned in 2004 to USGA specifications and boasts bermuda-grass fairways and four sets of tees to accommodate players of all walloping competences. Tall pines ensconce the course's gently rolling greens, meticulously groomed landscape, and water hazards wherein squirrels perfect synchronized-swimming routines. Aboard one of The Pines’ motorized carts, golfing duos zip through an argyle-friendly oasis that has hosted tournaments, including the Coastland Invitational, TYGA Junior Tournament, and Robert Wrenn Classic.
Shades of crimson and golden lighting embrace patrons as they enter Simply Thai, where the aromas of curry and spiced stir-fry enchant the senses. Crispy duck bathes in piquant sauces, and seafood specials populate plates with shrimp, scallops, and mussels in rich pools of curry. Meat-eschewers can find solace in a lengthy list of vegetarian specials, curries, and noodle dishes.
While using forks to spear thin-sliced beef or twirl flat rice noodles, patrons can sit back into curvy, cushioned backboards and admire a mandala-esque bronze disk mounted onto a colorful wall. A Buddha motif interweaves the restaurant's décor, with golden Buddha heads watching over diners from a wall and a larger lounging statue dreaming of nirvana and its close cousin, Marshmallow Fluff.
Pollard's Chicken & Catering’s boasts that they have the best chicken in town, and in their case, it’s actually true. Many locations garnered gold-medal status in the Best of Hampton Roads 2012 poll, orchestrated by the Virginian-Pilot’s online affiliate HamptonRoads.com. Beyond morsels fresh from the fryer, the eatery’s titular dish comes in many other forms, from buffalo wings and kid-friendly tenders to barbecue pulled chicken sandwiches. An array of other meat adds diversity to the dine-in menu, including barbecue pork ribs and tender crab cakes.
Pollard's Chicken & Catering also lives up to the other half its name, with various outposts also taking top honors for catering in the HamptonRoads.com poll. Clients can piece together their own spreads by ordering bulk fried chicken and à la carte hors d’oeuvres, or choose one of nine party buffets, which, like a well-packed piñata, include meat and vegetables for 25 or more people.
With Flair Tea Room’s hosts cultivate an elegant, old-fashioned tearoom within a sweetly unassuming white house. Delicate, feminine bric-a-brac line the shelves, walls, and tables, creating a sense of opulence rivaled only by hand washing a luxury car with a paste made from champagne and pulverized diamonds. Steamy pots of freshly brewed tea yield about three cups for each table, iced tea provides a chilly counterpoint on warm days, and Colombian coffee satisfies cravings for deep-roasted caffeine. Sumptuous plates of scones, quiches, and other small plates make teatime into a full meal, alleviating the pressure to make tea soup by pouring chamomile over plates of kale salad. With Flair caters to young tea drinkers with dress-up parties, lemonade, and teapot cookies, and the company pleases busy businesspeople with lunch to-go.
Executive Chef Jeff Brown transforms a host of farm-to-table ingredients into traditional southern dishes. He drenches meatloaf in mushroom gravy and pairs chicken with homemade biscuits. More creative endeavors include a burger topped with bacon, crab meat, cheese, and a fried egg; and a free-range chicken breast stuffed with country ham and mozzarella. On select nights, servers cart fried green tomatoes and pork chops to tables as guests play poker or exercise their minds during trivia.
The gleam of razor-sharp knives flashes from behind the sushi bar at Domo Japanese Restaurant & Sushi Bar, where chefs slice sashimi and assemble maki rolls before elegantly plating each dish. A tempura volcano roll clasps crab and tuna at its core, and fried oysters fraternize with eel, red snapper, and tuna in the Godzilla roll. Domo’s chefs also glaze chicken, beef, shrimp and other seafood with teriyaki sauce for diners that prefer their food to be slightly sweet and cooked, much like the books of a corrupt accountant in Candyland.
Tokyoto Japanese Restaurant's hibachi-sizzled meats and dazzling array of sushi and sashimi flourish in a softly lit habitat of simple leather seating, dark wood floors, and walls adorned with Japanese calligraphy and rustic stones. The vast menu enfolds more than three dozen specialty rolls flecked with spicy and creamy accents, more-traditional seafood pieces, and hot dishes built around steak, scallops, and shrimp. Creative, whimsical presentations mean that diners might find a saucy drawing of a cartoon cat beside their sushi roll, in a blend of art and marine life rivaling van Gogh's Self-Portrait with Manta Ray. In the spacious main dining room, a backlit bar casts a futuristic neon yellow glow, and the tatami room recalls ancient times with floor mats for kneeling and hanging lanterns lit by artisanal light bulbs.