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Food & Drink

Guide To The Shore: Top Outdoor Dining

May 26, 2011 6:00 PM

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OC outdoor dining

Whether gazing out at the beautiful Atlantic Ocean, walking along white sandy beaches or enjoying the landscape around the Jersey Shore, the vast terrain is truly a treasure. Many restaurants along the coast offer outdoor dining which allows guests to see the infinite beauty of the region. Combining savory selections with splendid scenery makes for a marvelous meal. - Veronica Dudo

Wonder Bar & Restaurant

3701 Sunset Avenue
Atlantic City, NJ 08401
609-344-8888
www.wonderbarac.com

The Wonder Bar & Restaurant in Atlantic City serves cocktails and food from their waterfront location offering fantastic views of the intracoastal waterway. Set at the foot of the Albany Avenue Drawbridge away from the hustle and bustle of the casinos, this picturesque establishment is open year round, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Patrons can come by car and park in the free parking lot or by boat and dock their boats at the floating docks. There is indoor and outdoor seating available. Guests can sit inside at the bar or in one of the cozy booths surrounding the bar, or the sunset room. For those looking to take advantage of their surroundings and smell the salty air, patrons can sit outside and gather around the Tiki bar or sit out on the back deck.

The Wonder Bar offers the same menu for both inside and outside diners. Guests can enjoy mussels, munchies, margaritas, seafood, martinis and even entrees. Some fan favorites include the Wonder Bar Salad with chopped walnuts, dried cherries, gorgonzola, roasted garlic and red wine vinaigrette; Nachos Grande with grilled chicken, refried beans, cheese, lettuce, tomato, sour cream and salsa; Double Pork Roll Sandwich with pork roll, fried eggs and cheese; the Wonder Bar’s number 1 best seller wrap with bacon, avocado, chicken, spicy chipotle sauce and chips; Penne Pasta in Vodka Blush with chicken or shrimp; Flounder Francaise with mashed potatoes and a vegetable and the NY Strip Steak served with steak fries or mashed potatoes.

In addition to a long list of beer on draft, bottled beer, wine and champagne, the Wonder Bar also features specialty cocktails. Some signature drinks include the Banana Cream Pie Martini; Apple Margarita with tequila, apple pucker, apple juice and sour mix; and the Starry Night Martini with Van Gogh double espresso and cream.
The Wonder Bar & Restaurant at the Jersey Shore offers serene views, scrumptious food and luscious libations.

Blue Pig Tavern

251 Beach Avenue
Cape May, NJ 08204
609-884-8422
www.congresshall.com/content/bluepigtavern.html

The Blue Pig Tavern has a rich history in Cape May, cited as the first tavern in the seaside resort. Located inside Congress Hall, this upscale tavern is open to hotel guests and the public. Offering a charming take on typical tavern food, this establishment features casual dining inside or outside for patrons.

Tables and chairs are set up in the garden and along Congress Hall’s beautiful porch surrounded by the expansive landscaped lawn which complements the beach and provides a relaxing atmosphere. Diners can enjoy the sounds of the surf crashing against the shore eating just steps away from the Atlantic Ocean. On warm nights, when the hotel is abuzz the tavern is a great place for socializing and enjoying a good meal. There are many delicious choices including The Blue Pig Tavern Buffalo Style Burger, Crab Cakes, House-Made Guacamole and the Classic Wedge Salad; the tavern also serves wines, mixed drinks and ale.

The Blue Pig Tavern’s story dates back 300 years. According to records, the tavern’s name, “Blue Pig” came from a famous gambling establishment that was on the old Congress Hotel’s lawn. A two-story cottage painted pale blue, the original Blue Pig was constructed in 1845 by Henry Cleveland the North’s most renowned gambler. Before that, Elias Hughes operated a tavern for whalers on the site in the 1700’s. As for why the establishment was named “Blue Pig,” no one knows where that came from!
Rooted in its deep seaside heritage, the Blue Pig Tavern offers traditional food in a comfortable atmosphere day or night.

Beach Creek Oyster Bar & Grill

500 West Hand Avenue
Wildwood, NJ 08260
609-522-1062
www.beachcreek.net

The Beach Creek Oyster Bar & Grill in Wildwood offers casual fine dining on the marina. Stop in by boat or car and feast on their specialty—continental coastal cuisine. This upscale establishment features an inside dining room and bar, outside deck and sunset martini bar.

A large roof provides shade over the outside patio which is complete with ceiling fans to keep guests cool during hot days. The floor is made up of large wooden planks which creates a classic shore feel. Tables and chairs fill the patio for patrons to fully enjoy this open air dining destination. Popular dinner items include Sea Bass Champignon, Flatiron Steak Salad, Maryland Crab Cakes, Sesame Seared Tuna, Strawberry BBQ Salmon, Maple Glazed Duckling and Broiled Lobster Tail. In addition to the nautical atmosphere, marina views offer a tranquil eating experience at the Beach Creek Oyster Bar & Grill.

The martini bar has happy hour specials offering specialty rums, cocktails and 20 unique and classic martinis such as the Bleu Goose with Grey Goose vodka garnished with three Gorgonzola stuffed olives; Blue Crush with coconut rum, vodka, banana liqueur, blue Curacao and pineapple; and the Shore Breeze with orange Vodka, Midori, coconut rum and splash of cranberry. Beach Creek Oyster Bar & Grill also presents live entertainment ranging from reggae to classical music which adds to the fun, laid-back summertime vibe.
Enjoy the many delicious flavors of the Beach Creek Oyster Bar & Grill on your next visit to the Jersey Shore.

Deauville Inn

201 Willard Road
Stratmere, NJ 08248
609-263-2080
www.deauvilleinn.com

The Deauville Inn is situated on the bay, at the foot of the Corson’s Inlet Bridge between Ocean City and Sea Isle City. For over 30 years the restaurant has offered good food, entertainment and hospitality for patrons year round; with a history dating back to the 1800s.

Serving lunch, dinner and late night snacks seven days a week; guests can arrive by boat and use the Deauville’s docking facilities. The establishment features a medley of dishes such as prime beef, veal, chicken, pasta and steaks, along with fresh caught seafood including Lobster tail, sea scallops, crabs, Atlantic salmon and shrimp.

The inside is air-conditioned and has seating at the sports bar. A big attraction is the outside dining area known as the Dockside Patio. Looking out over the water, guests can sip on a cold drink, enjoy a meal, watch the sunset, and listen to the various entertainers perform.

The Deauville Inn is also home to the “Beach House,” an area for those who just want to relax on the beach with their feet in the sand while sipping on their favorite cocktail.
There are many colorful tales surrounding the history of the Deauville. It has been told that the site was once a speakeasy during Prohibition, a rum-running station and housed a gambling casino during the 1920s and 1930s decades before casino gambling was legalized in Atlantic City. The Deauville Inn was previously known as The Whelan Hotel which opened its doors to many distinguished guests most notably President Theodore Roosevelt; and welcomed many famous entertainers including, Eddie Cantor, Jimmy Durante and Sophie Tucker.
With an aesthetically pleasing location, live entertainment and lots of menu selections, The Deauville Inn is a great waterfront destination to dine.

Clancy’s By the Sea

1244 Boardwalk
Ocean City, NJ 08226
609-398-3344
www.clancyspubs.com/OceanCity

Clancy’s by the Sea in Ocean City is located on the Boardwalk between 12th and 13th streets. This beachfront restaurant offers light fare and fine dining selections along with priceless décor—views of the ocean and beach.

With wood floors, brick accented designs, palm trees and colorful umbrellas; Clancy’s is a fun outside experience. On beautiful summer days or cool nights, dining at the seashore is always a pleasurable treat. Open seven days a week; serving breakfast, lunch and dinner this modern establishment is a great venue to visit to order food before or after spending some time on the beach. This eatery opened in 2009 and has been serving up delicious dishes ever since.

Guests have their choice of outside or inside dining either out on the boardwalk patio or up on the rooftop. Traditional breakfast items include eggs, bagel and Lox, pancakes, waffles, French toast, eggs Benedict and breakfast burritos. Lunch selections vary from burgers to salads, wraps, roast pork, Reubens, Clancy’s Original chowder, three cheese French onion soup and fries. For dinner some entrees offered are island shrimp, prime rib, lobster crab cake, macaroni & cheese casserole, southern flounder and chicken pot pie. Take-out service is also available so patrons can quickly and conveniently bring food down to the beach or order something scrumptious to take back home.

A diverse selection of appealing cuisine combined with a refreshing breeze, the distinct smell of salty air and the soothing sounds of waves crashing against the sand makes Clancy’s by the Sea a fantastic outdoor dining destination.

Urie’s Waterfront Restaurant

588 Rio Grande Avenue
Wildwood, NJ 08260
609-522-4189
www.uries.net

Urie’s Waterfront Restaurant in Wildwood has been a dining tradition at the Jersey Shore for over 50 years. Primarily known for their quality seafood at a reasonable price, the restaurant also offers steak, chicken, ribs and pasta dishes.

Guests can gaze out and watch beautiful sunsets while sipping on cocktails or eating tasty treats. As patrons dine, they can watch an additional attraction to the area—the Mississippi-style paddle wheeler and high speed Silver Bullet depart from the basin.

There are three dining rooms and a marina deck all with waterfront views for diners. The menu features an extensive selection of seafood, shell fish, steak, chicken and pasta dishes. Begin with one of their popular appetizers like the bloomin onion, battered fried calamari, or the spinach and artichoke dip. For dinner, indulge in a 1 ¼ pound whole Maine Lobster, stuffed flounder, broiled seafood combo, New York strip steak, BBQ baby ribs, chicken parmesan, shrimp and lobster Milan, or lobster ravioli.

There is also a raw bar and an all-you-can-eat crab dish offering Alaskan Snow Crab Legs and Dungeness Crab Clusters from 4PM to 9PM every night with refills served until 10PM.
There are two bars, one inside and one out on the Marina Deck featuring a long list of signature drinks, wine and fruity cocktails. Urie’s Waterfront Restaurant also has an arcade and gift shop on the premise for families to enjoy. Live entertainment is offered out on the deck Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday nights featuring live bands.

With tropical décor and a great location overlooking the water, Urie’s Waterfront Restaurant is a wonderful place to watch the boats sail along, sample splendid food and watch glorious sunsets.

Pier House Restaurant

1327 Beach Avenue
Cape May, NJ 08204
609-898-0300
www.thepierhousecapemay.com

The Pier House in Cape May is a contemporary sea-front restaurant situated between the Banks of the Atlantic Ocean and the Genteel La Mar Hotel. Serving breakfast, lunch and dinner, the restaurant offers fabulous fare and lovely libations.

The charming ambiance delights patrons who have their choice of eating inside or outside. The open air terrace outside is a dining area overlooking the ocean. Guests can dine in the sun during the day or under the stars at night.

Tasty breakfast treats include fresh fruit salad, cantaloupe melon with cottage cheese, fresh strawberries with granola and yogurt, omelets, breakfast meats, buttermilk pancakes, Belgian waffles, espresso and cappuccino, and a bloody Mary, Bellini or mimosa.

Some popular lunch items are burgers, Tuscan style chicken breast, Cape May crab cake, veggie Portobello, and blackened Ahi tuna steak.
There are delectable dinner options such as lump crab & avocado “Mangotini,” octopus, macho tuna, salt & pepper flashed fried calamari, lamb lollichops, swordfish “skaras,” filet mignon, pork chop and veal porterhouse.

Looking to cool off? Try a frozen drink, a glass of wine or a signature cocktail like a pina colada, margarita, rum runner, cosmopolitan, blue moon or caramel apple.
Come discover the Pier House Restaurant at the Jersey Shore and sit outside on the terrace for breakfast, lunch or dinner where they’re “setting the mood with food!”

Veronica Dudo is an award-winning journalist who has covered everything from breaking news to red carpet celebrity interviews. For more information on her work, click here.

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