Global Eats Part III

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Glory’s Bakery

Since 1986, Glory’s Bakery has been a community mainstay for Filipino food finds, well representing its cultural cuisine with pancit, the succulent national noodle, and crispy rolls of lumpia. In addition to the mélange of handhelds of freshly baked rolls filled with pork, ham and steak, they’ve forged a following for their phenomenal pepperoni bread, a tasty treat stuffed with savory pepperoni and stringy mozzarella cheese. 665 Aragona Blvd., Virginia Beach, 757-557-0613. 1920 Centerville Turnpike, Virginia Beach, 757-479-3316,


Maymar Filipino Restaurant

While this exceptional eatery offers the quintessential Filipino food items of tasty pancit and lumpia (combined with an order of their Tito Pogi), Maymar draws a crowd with their excellent entrees and daily specials. Help yourself to some adobo, with either chicken or pork, marinated in soy sauce vinegar and bay leaf, their top round Beefsteak with lemon and soy sauce or Bicol Express, chicken mixed with coconut milk and a three-chili blend, each served with a variety of rice, pancit or veggies. 805 N. Battlefield Blvd. #107, Chesapeake, 757-548-1731,


Mama Zeny's, Filipino Restaurants Newport News
Mama Zeny's

Mama Zeny’s

Located near the corner of Denbigh Boulevard and Jefferson Avenue, Mama Zeny’s is housed in a building that looks like it may have once been a 7-Eleven. However, it is surprisingly bright and cheery inside, especially when greeted by the delicious smells emanating from the small kitchen. If you don’t mind eating off Styrofoam dishes you’ll enjoy recipes that come straight from the Philippines. There is a full menu, but if you’re not familiar with Filipino food, you might want to start with the lunch buffet to try a sampling. 607 Denbigh Blvd., Newport News, 757-874-0780,


Oriental Cuisine Kainan

Kabalen Tess Lynch’s neat-as-a-pin University Shoppes spot offers a tasty education in Filipino fare from adobo to ube (mashed purple yam dessert). Her lechon kawali (crispy pork belly) and lumpia are lauded. So are her sinigang (sour soup) and BBQ chicken on a stick. Sundays mean buffet while other days feature à la carte and daily specials like the notable kare-kare (peanut-based oxtail stew). Kainan caters and offers a private dining room with a picturesque entrance paying homage to the stilt houses, bahay kubos, of Lynch’s native island nation. 5660 Indian River Rd., Virginia Beach, 757-313-9625,


Mariam’s Fil-Am Cuisine

To fully appreciate a culture, you must understand its food. Located in Bayview, this family-run restaurant fuses the hearts of Filipino and American cuisine. Pricing items so that diners can afford multiple choices off the ever-changing menu, the warm, charming waitstaff is eager to explain the more unusual offerings like purple ginataang langka (jackfruit-infused shrimp chowder). Tamarind-laced sinigang (sour soup) pairs exceptionally with sultry chicken adobo while grown men have fought outright over sweet tocino pork sausages. Order extra of the shatteringly crisp lumpia to smuggle home for later. 4801 Shore Dr., Virginia Beach, 757-460-2601




Jessy's Taco Bistro, Norfolk, Mexican restaurants
Jessy's Taco Bistro

Jessy’s Taqueria

Upon entering you might bump into someone piling a tray with pan dulce (pastries), like at a Ciudad de México panadería, but turn right for the taqueria and tequila bar that began as a literal hole-in-the-wall in the tienda. Today, after expanding here (and around Coastal Virginia), the sit-down restaurant teems, and there’s sometimes a line for genuine mole poblano, tacos, lamb broth, gorditas, horchata and more (even breakfast). Cool. That’s time for checking out the butchery and arrays of chiles, piñatas and candles. And eyeing colorful sweets to take home. 3201 E. Ocean View Ave., Norfolk, 757-531-0033,


Los Paisas Locos

No catalog menu here—just a tri-fold of authentic homestyle Mexican options from traditional tacos to menudo (tripe soup). Lovingly braised and seared carnitas are cradled by tortilla shells still warm from their daily press. Chips and salsa take a new twist with a help-yourself salsa bar that features more than a dozen varieties, each showcasing tomatillos, avocado, obscure Mexican spices and intensifying peppers. Chicken mole or tacos al pastor are can't-miss options for first-timers. 11710 Jefferson Ave., Newport News. 757-595-8226,


Gringo’s Taqueria

If the three amigos (vaguely boring tacos, bad guacamole, mediocre salsa) have overstayed their welcome in your weeknight dinners, a visit to Gringo’s could help. Located a half-mile from the Oceanfront, Gringo’s offers diners an authentic taco experience. Start with a Baja fried fish taco, then order a carne asada or veggie taco heaped with crisp, grilled asparagus and portobello mushrooms. Round out the meal with a cool drink from the full selection of Mexican beers and international wines before heading down to the boardwalk for a lazy evening stroll. 612 Norfolk Ave. #109, Virginia Beach, 757-961-2987,




Chic N Fish

Flourishing plants outside hint that this commercial strip storefront just off I-64 is more than run-of-the mill. Throngs inside are a tipoff, too. The eat-in/take-out Korean-American hybrid offers seafood platters and sandwiches, bulgogi and burgers, but most come for its KFC (Korean Fried Chicken). Double frying means orders may take up to a half hour, so many call ahead for wings and drums (“big as a man’s thigh”) with choice of soy garlic or hot and spicy glaze or—for the diplomatic—half and half. 954 J. Clyde Morris Blvd., Newport News, 757-223-6517,


Koreana Sushi & BBQ

One of Koreana’s biggest draws among locals is that it’s more in the pan-Asian category than simply confining itself to the Korean Peninsula. The eatery offers diners a range of experiences in Far Eastern cuisine. Up for sushi? Koreana’s chefs are well-practiced in that classic Japanese staple. But most diners venture into the heart of the Korean kitchen, where dolsot bibimbap and spicy squid bokkeum bring flavors found few other places in Coastal Virginia. 153 Monticello Ave., Williamsburg, 757-220-2010



The dormant, front-and-center sushi bar, like Mount Paektu, may erupt again one day, but for now a calm setting prevails amidst Asahi’s warm wood and soothing bamboo décor while the family-run Korean kitchen hushes rumbling tummies craving banchan (complimentary small dishes such as cucumber and cabbage kimchi, black beans, steamed veggies), magna-hot Dolsot Bibimbap in a stone bowl, tempting bulgogi (Korean barbecue), beautifully broiled fish and vegetable pancakes. Folks used to blow off steam in its karaoke lounge, but it too is currently quiet. 1628 Independence Blvd., Virginia Beach, 757-318-4111


KyungSung Restaurant, Korean restaurants Newport News
KyungSung Restaurant

KyungSung Restaurant

Operating since 1982, KyungSung was the first Korean restaurant established in Coastal Virginia. With a reputation like that, you know you can’t go wrong. Lunch and dinner are served daily except on Tuesdays, and you can choose from a number of traditional Korean options cooked in the kitchen or at tableside grills. Located near the intersection of Warwick and Bland, the restaurant is a little difficult to spot from the road, but if you look for the big red “Travel Inn” sign, you’ve reached your destination. 13748 Warwick Blvd., Newport News, 757-877-2797,


Norfolk Garden

If sizzling bulgogi or fiery bibimbap is what you seek, grab some friends and venture forth to Military Highway. Upon arrival at this foreclosed-looking restaurant, abandon your concern; though appearances may contradict, you are now in safe hands. A bizarre interior complements the truly genuine, if somewhat bewildering, Korean menu. Follow the banchan with a subtle and spicy soup like gopchang jeongol, then order the Norfolk Garden Special. This captivating grill-it-yourself parade of short ribs, bulgogi, chicken and pork is certain to provide enough entertainment—and food—to satisfy the whole party. 525 N. Military Hwy, Norfolk, 757-459-4646




Aago, Nepalese restaurants Newport News, Hampton Roads


Inhale the alluring spices as you enter this pretty jewel box of a dining room whose vibrant blue walls are painted with flickering flames, fitting as Aago means fire in Nepalese. Its heady Himalayan cuisine comes in the form of momo (dumplings plumped with ground chicken or veggies, sided by tomato and sesame chutney) and sekuwa (chicken/lamb skewers). Its lavish Indian dishes (biryanis, curries, a range of Tandoori breads) also draw many to only nine linen-draped tables, so allow for a wait, increasing anticipation to Mount Everest heights. 11745 Jefferson Ave., #8, Newport News. 757-310-6457,


Explore more Global Eats in Part I and Part II.

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