I read reviews of various restaurants in South Boston, where we were spending the night, and the Friday seafood buffet at Ernie’s caught my eye. The reviews were generally but not overwhelmingly positive for Ernie’s but all of them that mentioned the Friday seafood buffet were positive, and we decided to try it. The buffet is from 4-9 and includes, for any non seafood eaters, meats as well. The evening we were there seafood included fried oysters, steamed shrimp, bay scallops, hard shell crabs, a kind of seafood casserole, fish (I wasn’t sure but it might have been catfish), and some type of seafood based soup. I tried a cup. It resembled an oyster based chowder but was mainly a broth that had the butter and cream/milk appearance and taste of chowder but without any vegetables that I could discern and only a few small pieces of oysters. Meats included fried chicken, ribs, and beef. There were also hot vegetables, including delicious greens, excellent black eyed peas, stewed tomatoes, potatoes, corn on the cob, and an ample salad bar. What else: corn bread, hush puppies, deserts (including a pineapple bread pudding, cookies, and probably other items that I am forgetting.)
All I can say is that Ernie’s more than lived up to its reputation. Everything I tried (all of the seafood, ribs, greens, black eyed peas, potatoes) was very good. The soup was a bit disappointing if you were looking for a chowder but as a broth it was good. I wished I had had room for the bread pudding but couldn’t do it and settled for a cookie to take back to the hotel. The price for the buffet was $15.99 and it was more than worth it. When I think of the disappointing “all you can eat” I’ve had at Red Lobster and similar places, they don’t hold a candle to Ernie’s. The service was also very good, and one of the co-owners stopped by, told us a little background to the place, and even gave us a map of Virginia when we inquired how far it was to Brookneal and Red Hill, the site of the Patrick Henry Memorial, where we planned to stop the following morning on our way to Williamsburg. Ernie’s has a very extensive menu in addition to its buffet and If I’m ever back this way, I will definitely stop by even if it is not a Friday.
Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.