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“Excellence at The Rivah”
Review of The Works Bar and Grill - CLOSED

The Works Bar and Grill
Price range: US$10 - US$28
Cuisines: American, Seafood
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast, Reservations
Description: Located in the heart of historic Urbanna is The Works Bar and Grill. We feature a dining room, bar, patio and game room. A little bit of something for everyone.
Reviewed 8 July 2013

I just enjoyed my second Brunch at Ostra Raw Bar and Grill in Urbanna, VA Fourth of July weekend. I just had to return...it was soooo delicious! I have a second home near Urbanna, VA and am so thrilled to discover this fabulous restaurant. I had the Porky Benedict which was to die for! The restaurant was decorated in a wonderful manner and the staff is very attentive. My friend had the eggs benedict with soft shell crabs and loved her meal as well.I have enjoyed dinner as well. The crabcakes were fabulous and the patio is a wonderful place to spend an evening at the Rivah!
Make reservations to ensure a table and enjoy this gem of a restaurant !

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Thank Nancy C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviews (87)
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65 - 69 of 87 reviews

Reviewed 8 July 2013

Located in the beautiful waterside town of Urbanna, Virginia, Ostra blends a forward chicness with casual approachability, creating an atmosphere accepting of flip flops, tank tops, suits, and evening gowns. While the decor, indoor fountain, and outdoor seating under flowering vines and hanging lights certainly have their allure, it is the food and service that elevate Ostra from beautifully designed gimmick, to well crafted culinary destination.

Chef Bo Stephenson's dishes arrive in the capable hands of a staff that obviously respects them, and cares about their profession. The crostini plate is a must for an appetizer, with an array of chicken liver pâté with a pecorino Romano, smoked salmon with goat cheese, and an incredible bacon jam surrounding a generously portioned bowl of marinated olives. My only problem was deciding which was my favorite to save for last. If liver and olives ain't your thing, go for the sausage empanadas, a fennel laced indulgence wrapped in an impossibly light and flaky pastry made by patissier and sous chef Meaghan Callis-Koehler.

The entrees present a challenge of decisiveness, with raw bar options competing with masterfully prepared dishes such as a porterhouse porkchop, smoked salmon with green beans, and fried grit fritters (mind blowing even for someone who shies away from the great southern institution of the grit), and a cream sauce. Be sure to pay attention to the specials, as there's usually something worth pursuing sneaking around in there. Surf and turf skewers with monkfish and filet tips, for example, came with a truffle bacon Dijon potato salad that is one of the most beautifully indescribable things I've ever put in my mouth. It really shouldn't even be called a potato salad; I feel it is unfair to the other potato salads of the world which simply don't compare.

I'm not big on sweets, but their deserts have pulled me in a few times, and I've never regretted it. Bourbon vanilla bean cheese cake? Sign me up. Creme brûlée with drunken blackberries? Yes please.

I honestly don't have a bad thing to say about this place. Their staff is so personable they operate on a first name basis with the regulars, and often lure the tourists back in for a second visit, which is saying something. You only get so many vacation meals, the tendency is to make them count.

The bar serves inventive cocktails and some notable craft brews, like Flying Dog's Raging B*tch Belgian IPA (an aptly titled 8.7 % ABV, delightful kick in the face for hop heads and malt lovers alike) Legend Brown (from Richmond), and a variety of domestic and Mexican fizzy stuff, along with some simple palate pleasers like Stella Artois.

The owners are always around and worth talking to. Nobody will snub you if you look like you just spent the day rolling around in the river.

At night they often have live music, such as local reggae laureates Stuck On A Name, whose infectious blend of originals and personalized covers run the ska/punk/dancehall gamut, and are impossible to avoid dancing to, even when dancing aint yer strong suit. The bar transforms into something of a nightly party, and it can get hard to pull yourself away sometimes when you know you have to get up early.

If it isn't obvious by now, I love this place. Go. You won't regret it.

Tip well, my friends. They deserve it.

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1  Thank sprestonduncan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 June 2013

Delicious, fresh, lunch served by a friendly and efficient waitress. Dinner also good, but the menu seemed limited.

Thank lilscottiepippen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 June 2013

Fine dining in a small historic town, Urbanna. Our service was excellent and the food delish! We had an enjoyable evening wining, dining and listening to the songs of an awesome piano player.

Thank Southerngirl938
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 June 2013

Trendy restaurant in the middle of sleepy Urbanna. Very clean and food is yummy. From chef specials to burgers - delightful!

Thank dunsterlady
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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