Renderings courtesy of SONNY + ASH
A new restaurant specializing in Virginia oysters and coastal cuisine is set to open before the end of the year. Tin Cup Kitchen + Oyster Bar, scheduled to open December 2020, will be a coastal American eatery boasting an expansive outdoor terrace overlooking the Chesapeake Bay.
The restaurant, located in the upcoming Delta Hotels Virginia Beach Bayfront Suites, will be led by Chef Kevin Dubel, who is a familiar face in Virginia Beach’s dining scene.
“It’s a coastal, causal atmosphere,” says Dubel, who also served as Chef De Cuisine at The Cavalier Hotel’s Becca, as well as other Virginia Beach restaurants Terrapin, Zoe’s and Eurasia.
Along with over 20 years of experience in the industry, Dubel also brings with him a robust knowledge of the region as he’s worked with some of the best watermen and fishermen in the area. Dubel says that he and his food and beverage team all come from fine dining backgrounds, allowing them to introduce different techniques to Shore Drive’s restaurant row.
Tin Cup Kitchen will showcase a wide variety of oysters that represent Virginia’s eight oyster regions, each with their own distinct flavor. The VA Oyster Trail Tower will take diners on a flavor tour through each region. The restaurant is committed to sustainable harvesting practices, collaborating with the Chesapeake Bay Foundation.
In addition to seafood, Dubel says Tin Cup’s menu will be globally inspired, with a main focus on Southern and mid-Atlantic cuisine. The menu will utilize local ingredients when possible, working with Virginia farmers and fisherman such as Scott MacDonald of Spots Fish Co., Mattawoman Creek Farms and Cartwright Farms.
Diners can expect traditional mid-Atlantic dishes such as Chesapeake crab cakes, with Carolina gold rice and citrus remoulade, seared scallops and more. A more intriguing menu item is the Buffalo Sugar Toads, also known as the “chicken wings of the sea,” according to Dubel. These Chesapeake Bay puffer fish are fried and coated in a house-made hot sauce, served with honey, benne seeds and buttermilk dipping sauce.
Another unique addition to the menu is the all-seafood charcuterie program.
“We’re making seafood pâtés, swordfish bacon, scallop mortadella,” explains Dubel. “It plays off of recognizable foods, but we’re doing it with seafood.”
Playing on the restaurant’s name, which comes from the part of a mess kit that soldiers and sailors would drink water out of, the restaurant’s signature cocktail will be a Tin Cup Smash made with rye whiskey of the same name, lemon and mint-lavender infusions.
Dubel wants this to be a restaurant that people can come to multiple times a week, whether for a sit-down meal or to just grab a drink and a bite after work.
“We’re taking a fine-dining technique and making it super approachable.”
There are already plans for happy hours with breathtaking bay views, champagne and oyster nights on Thursdays, known as “Bubbles on the Bay,” and “Sunday Supper,” a three-course, seasonal dinner every Sunday.
Accompanying Tin Cup Kitchen will be Conservatory at Tin Cup, a 56-seat outdoor spot for drinking and dining located between the restaurant and Café 2800, a full-service coffee shop. Delta Hotels Virginia Beach Bayfront Suites will open as the first hotel with its own private beach on the Chesapeake Bay.
Tin Cup Kitchen + Oyster Bar and Delta Hotels Virginia Beach Bayfront Suites are scheduled to open December 2020 at 2800 Shore Drive, Virginia Beach.