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“New concept for the Shore”
4 of 5 bubbles Review of Carmen's

Carmen's
Ranked #11 of 89 Restaurants in Beach Haven
Certificate of Excellence
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Large groups, Local cuisine, Special occasions, Families with children, Romantic
Dining options: Dinner, Accepts American Express, Accepts Discover, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Reservations, Seating, Waitstaff
Description: Opening for the season on April 13 Come join us
Long Beach Island,NJ
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“New concept for the Shore”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 5, 2008

Vidalia switched to a tappas concept this year and we found it a positive change from the local cuisine. There are small dishes and somewhat larger offerings (but still smaller than normal meals). While the actual number of selections is lower than other tappas type restaurants we've eaten at, the selections are generally interesting and were quite good. The scallops were especially noteworthy, Our bill for 5 dishes was $60 and while the quantity of food may have been somewhat less than some other restaurants in this price point we were quite satisfied.

Helpful?
Thank Brunello97
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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142 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    89
    35
    4
    8
    6
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
CT
Level Contributor
13 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
“Tapas is tops!”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 28, 2008

We have been hoping to try the tapas menu here after enjoying their regular menu in the past and this past weekend we corralled another couple and tackled the menu.
There is an explanation of tapas on the menu, but basically this restaurant is for those who like sharing and combining dishes. We were a party of 4 and our waitress quite ably helped us navigate the choices on the menu and informed us we could easily add more as our dinner progressed. For a group of 4, it was recommended to order about 16 small dishes. We ordered just under that and had more than enough.
There were flatbreads, salads, bite size portions and slightly larger portions, but we shared everything, even if it meant cutting scallops in half. Standouts were the scallops (tender and tasty). flatbread with tenderloin and asagio cheese, and tuna done medium rare. The surprise stand out of the night was a last minute order of bacon wrapped figs, which were carmelized and everyone agreed melted in our mouths. The signature Sweet Vidalia onion came stuffed with lentals, and made a lental fan out of me!
There were several desserts on the menu, but after trying so many different flavors, two of our party opted out and two ordered sorbet, which was cool, tart and enough for two to easily share.
There is no liquor license, which means you can bring your own. Since the menu is so varied, we brought a red and white which seemed perfect for us.
The most expensive items (if I remember) were in the $ 16-18 range which was braised ribs and maybe the tuna. This was for small plates which gave our party of 4 only approx 2 bites each. The final bill without tip was about $120 for 4 and we were stuffed and left some food on the table. We had one small eater, two moderate eaters, and one big eater, just to give you an idea!

Service was more than competent for a seasonal resort, food came out promptly, properly prepared and hot. We did not feel rushed and thorouglhy enjoyed the ambience. They do take reservations.

Helpful?
1 Thank yankeemom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hershey, PA
Level Contributor
37 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
“Fantastic fine dining at LBI”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 28, 2008

I have been vacationing in Beach Haven since I was a small child, so as a "foodie" I was very pleased when Sweet Vidalia opened - it was the first of several "fine dining" options to open in Beach Haven over the past 10 years - a welcome alternative to the good, but unexciting options in the past.

My mother and I typically dine there at least 2 times during our week-long stays...need I really say more? The chef/owner, Michael O'Meara, is a fresh-faced creative genius in the kitchen who opened the restaurant with his father as sous chef and part owner. (Ladies...he's also easy on the eyes, just like Rocco DiSpirito, but much more humble!) Although the menu is not extensive, the quality of the food is always excellent and a few nightly specials are always offered. My personal favorities are the Vidalia Onion soup and ANY scallop dish. The desserts are also supurb, but I rarely have room to enjoy them!

The wait staff is EXTREMELY professional and gracious - it is obvious that Michael O'Meara educates and trains them with high expectations.

Just remember, it is BYOB...enjoy!

Helpful?
2 Thank kidzeyedoc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
36 reviews
21 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Not What It Appears To Be”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 22, 2007

It was ranked high in Philadelphia Magazine so we thought it was a safe bet for a nice dinner. What I found was low quality food dressed up to appear much higher end. Hot house (tasteless) grilled tomato for an $11 app. Previously frozen, over cooked, shrimp in the $35 entree'. It felt like since it was the end of the season, they just used the cheapest ingredients available. Nice atmosphere, great wait staff.
My only advice to them is: Do not cut corners on the food!

Helpful?
3 Thank Malakos
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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