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“Walk into the great smell of a wood burning smoker”
Review of Smokehouse & Cooler Restaurant - CLOSED

Smokehouse & Cooler Restaurant
Price range: $15 - $25
Cuisines: American, Barbecue, Bar, Gastropub
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Bar scene
Dining options: Dinner, Reservations
Neighborhood: Northeast Virginia Beach
Description: Virginia Beach's original gastropub ("a bar style restaurant that serves high quality food"), has long been a local's favorite on Shore Drive. Tucked back in a courtyard the restaurant offers casual dining with a welcoming and lively bar. The acclaimed menu focuses on using fresh, quality ingredients prepared in regional selections, often infused with unique smoked flavors.
Reviewed January 20, 2013

I went here for lunch. The resturant is tucked in behind another bar and it is easy to miss. When you walk in the smell of hickory wood in the smoker is filling the air with its welcoming call. It was empty for lunch but a very friendly bartender welcomed me and showed me a menu as well as the lunch specials for the day. All of them sounded delicious but the bartender made a recommendation and I ran with it. The Chef came out to greet me his name was Ashley he told me about the menu and how everything is made fresh to order. I watched him create my smoked primerib sandwich and he also offered me the sweet potato fries instead of regular fries which were excellent crisp not greasy and not over salted. The sandwich was delicious, it was piled high with meat covered with cheese and horsey sauce served on a warm bun. The pickle on the side was crisp also. I was a happy camper! will be back and recommend to all to try this place and say hi to Chef Ashley.

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2  Thank MichaelBronx
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviews (18)
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5 - 9 of 18 reviews

Reviewed December 2, 2012

Most Pittsburgh Steelers fans know Smokehouse as a place to watch football. Hopefully,they know what they have (probably not). This restaurant has a chef from the Cordon Blue, which means he's capable. The fear is that this highly qualified chef would cook down to the customers. On the contrary, the menu has a great sophistication that goes beyond BBQ. Try the oyster stew or the lobster roll. But if you're going to Smokehouse, definitely do the ribs, BBQ or chicken. They even make their own pretzels, which are better than anything you can get at the stadium.
As a bonus, there's a decent wine list with nothing over $30/bottle. The service is so so, but again it's not formal dining. The courses may not be coordinated as you would expect. One thing to stay away from is the fish taco's, not a place for that.
Another option is outdoor dining. They have a TV to watch the game and smoke a nice cigar and not get wet

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2  Thank Mayoplan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 4, 2012

Have eaten here a couple of times as it is near where I live. Tucked away on Shore Drive. The food was very good earlier this year...but they have changed the menu and some items that I really enjoyed...like Tempura Shrimp are gone. They replaced it with a heavy cornmeal batter that was less than desirable. We had 4 people. Two had the steaks which they said they said were ok. came with mashed potatoes and brussel sprouts...not a favorite of many. Thought it odd they did not have cocktail sauce or tartar sauce for the shrimp. Shrimp came with cole slaw that had a bit of a sour odd taste and large heavy fries that were not quite done. You get a plate of food, not many options on sides. By looking at the other reviews..maybe should have stayed with the ribs, which I have had there before and were good. May go back and give them another try but was a mediocre meal at best.

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1  Thank Barbara B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 1, 2012

Smokehouse and Cooler has the expected ribs and pork BBQ, with non-smoked and unexpectedly light items that keep us coming back each week. I agree with fdm45's review "Best LIttle Secret;" the prix fixe menu is always a delight as are the daily specials. The menu includes my favorites chili glazed shrimp appetizer, fish tacos and grilled salmon on a salad. The specials often include a seafood pasta, flocal fish, imaginative salads with the freshes local ingredients, inventive small pizzas and quesidilla's.
Another thing to note is they serve late. Often I return home from travel, after many delays, and stop in the Smokehouse and Cooler for a lovely meal long after the other Shore Dr. restaurants are closed.
JP and Chef Rob Murphy take care of us like family. The Smokehouse Cooler: hard to find; easly to love.

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2  Thank WorkingTraveler_10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 26, 2012

I will agree with the other posts about this place being in a hole in the wall but they certainly know how to cook. Ribs were tender and seasoned well, I had the caprese salad and it was fresh and crisp. Overall a great find.

1  Thank ecm6p
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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