On a recent trip through the east coast to taste with importers, my wife and I spent a day in Virginia Beach, and had a fantastic dinner at Salacia, which is located in the Hilton Hotel. While they have a nice indoor dining room, without a doubt, the best place to sit is on the outside terrace, where they have casual, yet intimate, tables set up for two, with a view of the Atlantic.
While most beach resort towns have a common theme of Steak Houses (I've no idea why), there's a raw bar here, and the menu has a solid selection of fresh Seafood. We started with some Deep Fried Oysters and a Jumbo Crab cake, both being excellent. We washed this down with a half bottle of Thierry Merlin Sancerre (which I failed to write down the vintage for) and it had plenty of juicy acidity and a quaffable, easy and delicious style. For the main courses, we had a whole Snapper, covered in sea salt and roasted, that was brilliantly done, as well as a plate of seared Scallops set on top of truffle-laced mashed potatoes. The roasted fish was the star of the show, but the Scallops were cooked perfectly and had loads of flavor. While the Sancerre would have worked just fine, I couldn't resist ordering a bottle of the 2009 Marcassin Pinot Noir Marcassin Vineyard, which was on the list at just a hair over release price. It made mockery of the "don’t pair red wine with fish" theory and worked perfectly with both the roasted fish and scallops. Giving up deep red and black currants, spice, forest floor and underbrush aromas and flavors, this incredible Pinot was heavenly textured and seamless on the palate. We drained the bottle in record time and loved every sip.
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