The 219 is what a Downtown restaurant should be
It provides a great night out without making you feel like you have to wear a tie or heels. A great happy hour ($3.50 wells) with a good mix of delicious drinks and appetizers. It's nice, even perhaps a bit upscale without being pretentious. The food is delicious without being overly complicated or intimidating. They do simple, classic food with an Asian twist. They do basic American to perfection (flank steak) and get a little more adventurous with things like cocoa dusted pork medallions. Try the pot-stickers with apricot glaze (definitely not the deep fried frozen mess you get at most Asian restaurants) and the molten chocolate cake. It's a bit pricey if you go outside of Restaurant Week, but worth every penny. A new favorite place in Norfolk!
I've eaten at 219 for lunch many times. The sweet potato chips are the bomb! The menu has a huge variety of items. I've had a hummus sandwich, black bean cakes, a tofu stir fry and pizza and all have been phenomenal. Hands down, my best experience there was when the soup of the day was pumpkin. I think you can find it pop up on the menu in the fall. They top the soup with cream and pumpkin seeds. Oh, yea!
First Timer-Will Return!
Tried the newly reopened/renamed 219 American Bistro last night. For a Saturday night, there was a good crowd with a good atmosphere. We were able to get seated without reservations, but only because we got there right before 7pm when things picked right up. Really nice wine list, we had a great Pinot Noir and the menu--wow! I appreciate a nice balance of variety on a menu and 219 offers that. We had a seasonal dish, Rock Fish and it was outstanding. I highly recommend you check our their website/menu online. My only complaint (and it isn't anything that would keep me from going back) is that we were "checked on" way too many times and by way too many members of the staff. I wish we hadn't let them know it was our first time there. They are an amazing high end establishment and didn't need to try so hard in my opinion. It was almost as if they were too nervous to just let us enjoy the evening without constantly intervening. They were very sweet and certainly had the best intentions so I can't be to harsh. And trust me, the service itself and the meal was so good it makes this a minor infraction that I am willing to overlook and will certainly go back.
Great service and food.
I went to lunch Weds. afternoon April 28, 2010 to check out the new 219. I have to say thank God for the reopening of a new restaurant in downtown Norfolk. Its great to see you open. The place is great and clean.
Since I was there for lunch, I had bowl of spring vegetable soup and finished with the Hanger Steak which was cooked to perfection. Sean was the best server
I have ever had, being a server myself. Welcome back with the right team with Sean you are going to do well. Ask for Sean he is GREAT.
Long time customer
We have been going to 219 since it opened, probably 15 or more years ago. The food has always been great and we have never had a bad meal. We don't go out quite as much as we used to, but when we do go back, it is still great. Good selection of beers and other libations as well. When friends are in town and I want a nice, consistent meal, where you don't have to yell to be heard, this is where we like to go.