Head on down to the Bayou at Lil’ Bit of NOLA in Ghent for traditional New Orleans cuisine

Susan S. Johnson

NORFOLK, Va. – Violet, gold and green reign supreme inside a Lil’ Bit of NOLA in Norfolk’s Ghent neighborhood.

“There are beads on the wall you can take with you when you come by,” said General Manager Mark Conway.

The music, the masks and of course, the smell of jambalaya and shrimp Po-boys quickly pull you in, where every day is Mardi Gras inside this Louisiana lounge.

“We serve traditional dishes with a touch of this area and New Orleans,” said Conway.

The food is mouth-watering: From beignets, to gumbo, to Creole empanadas and more.

“We just have so much fun with the flavors,” said Conway.

This the second Lil’ Bit of NOLA location. Their Kempsville location has been open since late 2019.

“COVID has presented all new challenges,” said Conway. “None of us had a pandemic chapter in [our] ‘how to run a restaurant’ playbook.”

So, they decided to expand, with social media being their hot new marketing tool.

“With all the new Facebook groups and takeout food groups, we were able to reach more people, more market penetration through social media tie-ins,” he said.

But they have had their share of bumps in this Bayou.

“There has been an inability to get rubber gloves or even an inability to get to-go packaging,” said Conway.

Inside the restaurant, the tables are socially distanced and the bar seating is closed.

Once the weather warms up, they boast an amazing rooftop bar with seating for 60.

“This is going to be the place you come to eat, socialize, and you can come to celebrate all things to all people.”

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