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Terrapin Restaurant | Exquisite VA Beach Fine Dining

Terrapin Restaurant Virginia Beach

VA Beach Fine Dining

Terrapin Restaurant

Experiencing new, local restaurants is one of my absolute favorite parts of traveling, and Terrapin Restaurant in VA Beach did not disappoint! My mother and I were kindly hosted by Terrapin for a 3-course wine-paring dinner – and Terrapin’s managing partner, Brian Williams, was an outstanding host!

Terrapin Restaurant Virginia Beach

Terrapin Restaurant is a farm-to-table style, fine dining restaurant located just a few blocks from the ocean! I loved being able to walk to the restaurant from our hotel!

Since Terrapin is a farm-to-table restaurant, their menu changes quite frequently! However, guests always have the option to dine a la carte or choose a 4-course wine pairing dinner. And come on, can we just talk about how cute the butter is?


Course One:

Our first pairing began with an outstanding J.K. Carriere 2017 Rose’ Pinot Noir from Oregon paired with A Mixed Green Salad and Heirloom Baby Beets! I had actually never tried beetroot before, but these were outstanding! The colors of the beets are absolutely gorgeous, and the Rose’ was by far my favorite that I’ve ever had!

Terrapin Restaurant Virginia Beach

Course Two:

Our second pairing, and main course, consisted of the deliciously complex Michael Shaps 2015 Petit Manseng from Monticello, VA paired with Soft-shell Crab and Ricotta Ravioli. This made for another first; I had never tried soft-shell crab before, and quite honestly, I wasn’t very familiar with it. However, I love trying new things and I am so glad that I did!

Fun Fact: These crabs are considered “soft-shell” because they are harvested right after they molt off their exoskeleton; therefore, there is nothing on your plate that you cannot eat!

Terrapin Restaurant Virginia Beach

The soft-shell crab is served slightly fried, tempura style – giving it an amazing crunch and flavor! And, the fresh ravioli pasta is always made in-house, making it melt-in-your-mouth delicious! Terrapin’s chef/owner, Rodney Einhorn, definitely knows what he is doing in the kitchen!

To top it all off, the wine-pairings make the food even more exquisite! This particular Petit Manseng, has an excellent oak flavor, but is still crisp on the finish! Think of all of the great characteristics of your favorite red wine and your favorite white wine put together!

Terrapin Restaurant Virginia Beach

Course Three:

After dinner, we had a refreshing Brut de Peche to cleanse our palate. Then lastly, our third pairing consisted of one Fonseca 10 year tawny and one Cardamaro from Piemonte Italy paired with two outstanding desserts.

The first dessert was “Apple of my Eye”, which is a vanilla lemon mousse, with apple filling and chocolate drizzle. The second was “Chocolate Melts the Heart”, which is a chocolate sphere filled with orange crème, placed on top of a chocolate mousse cake. When served, an orange chocolate sauce is poured over the sphere, causing it to melt and expose the orange filling! I know, I know, you’re starving now, right? Terrapin Restaurant has an outstanding in-house pastry chef, Ava Caliva, who started her culinary career in Japan!

Terrapin Restaurant Virginia Beach

We were amazed to find that Brian had a genius wine tool that he used to serve the wine! The device sticks a needle through the cork to extract the wine so that the wine is never exposed to the air. This concept allows you to enjoy a particular bottle of wine over an extended amount of time – so you don’t feel the need to finish a whole bottle in a day or two before it goes bad! The device is a bit pricey – but you can find it here on Amazon.



To say that our dining experience at Terrapin Restaurant was nice would definitely be an understatement. The folks at Terrapin Restaurant in VA Beach go above and beyond to make your dining experience one that you will remember! I highly recommend stopping in for a wine-pairing dinner whenever you find yourself in the VA Beach area!

Terrapin Restaurant Virginia Beach

More to Come:

The real reason that I was in VA Beach to begin with was to write about the 2018 VA Beach Neptune Festival. You can read about my experience at the Neptune Festival here! But, because I had so much to say about my wonderful experience at Terrapin, I decided to create a separate, in-depth dining highlight blog to share all of the wonderful details about our time with them!

Terrapin Restaurant Virginia Beach

What is your favorite part of a great dining experience?

Read more about VA Beach.


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Our dining experience at Terrapin was complimentary; however, all reviews and opinions expressed on this blog are unscripted and honestly & organically my own! 

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