Saturday, June 15Hampton Roads Weekly

Fabulous Finds

Bobo’s Fine Chicken: 

Food So Good It’ll Make You “Wanna Smack Your Mama”

By Connie Meyer

If you are an old-school southern food lover, then you may have heard this saying: “food so good it’ll make you wanna smack your mamma”.  If the southern food you’re eating is over-the-top-exceptional, then the superlative version of this is: “food so good it’ll make you wanna smack your mama’s mama”!  

At the peril of all of our “mamas” cheeks, Bobo’s Fine Chicken Restaurant on Shore Drive is just something you have to experience for yourself, it’s just that good.   For chef/owner Bo Midgett, it is all about the two F’s-food and family-Bobo’s Chicken encompasses both.  Most of Bo’s recipes come directly from generations of treasured family members, perfecting them in their southern kitchens for decades, generation after generation.  Full disclosure, I had the privilege and undeniable pleasure of experiencing Bo’s grandmother’s fried chicken in person with my dad Freddie and Bo’s uncle, Al Midgett, years ago.  May Henry Midgett’s southern hospitality and mouth-watering recipes were served with love in her welcoming and gracious southern Bay Colony home. 

Bo Midget carries on the great work ethic of the Midgett family by arriving at his restaurant at 5 a.m. every morning to start preparing all the delectable southern offerings on his menu, made by hand, from scratch from the finest local ingredients.  May Henry’s fried chicken 

is something you’ve likely never tasted, it’s crisp crust is mahogany brown in color and even the white meat is super moist.  

Bobo’s biscuits are also incredibly special.  They come from May Henry’s college roommate’s mama, who everyone called Granny, whether you were related to her or not.  May Henry went to Longwood College back in the day and fell in love with these biscuits.  Before Granny passed away, her family sat in front of her to make sure the recipe would live on, because Granny put in a “handful of this and a half a handful of that”.  Her children were smart enough to have Granny when she was older, grab a “handful” while they held the measuring cup underneath to see exactly what went into those amazing biscuits.  Bo Midgett continues to keep that recipe alive at his restaurant.  

Uncle Bill’s barbeque sauce (Bo-bo-q sauce) is just the right amount of tang and also provides a base for Bo’s rich Brunswick Stew.  Speaking of sides, other not to be missed sides include fresh salads, of course, collard greens, candied sweet potatoes, black-eyed peas and stewed tomatoes, and macaroni and cheese (my favorite-it is definitely on the “smack your mama’s mama” scale).  

As if all that “good-eatin’” weren’t enough, Bo actually makes from-scratch ice cream that changes seasonally using the freshest ingredients possible.  Uncle Bill’s farm outside of Macon, Georgia grew unbelievable peaches.  And are we ever lucky in Virginia Beach that they did!  When peaches are in season each summer, Bobo’s Fine Chicken serves the most unbelievable peach ice cream from their old family recipe.  Other flavors during the year include: peanut swirl, strawberry and dreamsicle.  

Bobo’s truly has something for everyone.  They serve breakfast, lunch, dinner and even have a convenient drive-thru.  Chicken tenders are available for both kids and adults, and if you’re watching your diet the salads and homemade dressings are amazing.  For the same price as a crummy fast-food breakfast, you’ll find their unbelievable biscuits filled with local bacon, ham and eggs.  Local craft beers are also served and family meals, platters and catering services are available.   

Thank goodness Bo Midgett and the other grandkids spent all that time with Grandma May Henry, watching and helping her cook those superlative family meals.  Bo took his excellent University of Virginia Business School education, worked in food service in Manhattan and we are truly lucky that he landed back with us in Virginia Beach at Bobo’s Fine Chicken Restaurant.

Food so good it’ll definitely “wanna make you smack your mama”!

3139 Shore Drive

Virginia Beach, Virginia 23451


Open Mon-Sat 6:30am to 9:00pm