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Cape May, NJ


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#1 Deldino

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Posted 31 May 2006 - 08:49 AM

Hi All,

My husband and I are going down to Cape MAy this weekend and we are looking for a place with really good seafood - place can be fancy or not.

Any suggestions would be appreciated.

Thanks

#2 Basilgirl

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Posted 31 May 2006 - 12:07 PM

You might like to try The Lobster House, on the water overlooking the harbor. It's been almost 5 years since we went there, but we had a nice evening drinking brew and eating some good food - sorry I can't remember exactly what we had, but I do remember there were oysters involved for the Basilman and stone crab claws for me...

Here's a blurb from their Web site:

"Any visit to the Jersey Shore and Cape May would be incomplete, without enjoying, the fine food and nautical atmosphere at the Lobster House.

We unload our boats seven days a week to insure the freshest possible product. You're welcome to watch the boats unload their catch, it's something you shouldn't miss.

We ship millions of pounds of seafood annually all over the U.S.A.

Our hours vary greatly during the year.
Please call (609) 884-8296
for our current hours."

https://www.thelobst...obsterhouse.htm
I love cooking with wine. Sometimes I even put it in the food.

#3 Jeff L

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Posted 31 May 2006 - 02:04 PM

You might like to try The Lobster House, on the water overlooking the harbor. It's been almost 5 years since we went there, but we had a nice evening drinking brew and eating some good food - sorry I can't remember exactly what we had, but I do remember there were oysters involved for the Basilman and stone crab claws for me...

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Try any place but the Lobster House. Go there only if every other place in town is closed. If you love institutional food for the masses then this is your place. Sorry Basilgirl but that's the deal. Great retail market for take home fresh tuna, etc - just don't let them cook it for you.

Look on the NJ board for great places to eat in Cape May. There are many outstanding places and most are byo.

Peaches on Sunset is fantastic and has great original seafood dishes. My favorite little (5-6 tables) fish place is Louisa's Cafe on the pedestrian mall. I forget the street name but locals know and love it. Food is wonderfully fresh and expertly prepared. She won't make it if it isn't just caught. A few non seafare items but mostly seafood. Reservations are critical and they have a policy of calling either Monday or Tuesday for the weeks reservations.

For a more formal and expensive night I have always like the Washington Inn on Washington Street. Best wine cellar in the state of New Jersey.

Edited by Jeff L, 31 May 2006 - 02:07 PM.


#4 KatieLoeb

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Posted 31 May 2006 - 02:23 PM

I'd strongly agree with JeffL on this one. Stuff that is bulletproof like a simple steamed lobster or oysters or clams on the half shell are fine at Lobster House, but anything that requires cooking, saucing or attention on the stove is not their strong suit. Think thick wall paper paste overly roux filled clam chowder or overcooked flounder and you'll get the drift.

However, sitting out at the end of the dock in the sunshine with a steamed lobster and corn on the cob in front of me is a ritual I will repeat at Lobster House several times each summer. It's the best.

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#5 njduchess

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Posted 31 May 2006 - 02:25 PM

I have to agree with Jeff about The Lobster House. I also second his suggestions. Here are two additional choices:

Axelson's Blue Claw - on the road leading to Wildwood. Instead of going straight onto the Parkway, turn right following the signs for Wildwood and it's on the left side of the road. It's a much more elegant setting than The Lobster House and the seafood, although not tremendously innovative, is perfectly prepared. They have a liquor license.

Copperfish - on the road leading into town. You'll pass it on your right on the way in. We dined there last year and enjoyed it. I can't remember what we ate, but the food was good and I think it is a BYOB.

Louisa's can be tricky to get in. I think you need to show up on their doorstep when they open for business for the night. You put your name on a list, and they give you an approximate time to show up for that night. You can't make reservations in advance. Check with your front desk to see if it has changed.

We try to make an annual pilgrimage to Cape May. It's my favorite spot in NJ.
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#6 Jeff L

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Posted 31 May 2006 - 02:45 PM

I have to agree with Jeff about The Lobster House.  I also second his suggestions.  Here are two additional choices:

Axelson's Blue Claw - on the road leading to Wildwood.  Instead of going straight onto the Parkway, turn right following the signs for Wildwood and it's on the left side of the road.  It's a much more elegant setting than The Lobster House and the seafood, although not tremendously innovative, is perfectly prepared.  They have a liquor license.

Copperfish - on the road leading into town.  You'll pass it on your right on the way in.  We dined there last year and enjoyed it.  I can't remember what we ate, but the food was good and I think it is a BYOB.

Louisa's can be tricky to get in.  I think you need to show up on their doorstep when they open for business for the night.  You put your name on a list, and they give you an approximate time to show up for that night.  You can't make reservations in advance.  Check with your front desk to see if it has changed.

We try to make an annual pilgrimage to Cape May.  It's my favorite spot in NJ.

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We love Cape May too, I'm not sure if Louisa's changed their policy of calling on Monday or Tuesday for that weekend but the address is 104 Jackson Street, 609 884-5882. I can pretty much guarantee you won't get in at any reasonable hour if you hang outside and sign the list.

Blue Claw is good and fun too. We also love 2 mile landing. Crazy busy place but a cool relaxing outdoor raw bar on the bay is nice on a cool summer night. Warning: Major crowds, great garlic crabs! Just a mile or so from Alexsons on the same pier.

#7 pnapoli

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Posted 31 May 2006 - 05:04 PM

Peaches on Sunset is fantastic and has great original seafood dishes.

this place is long gone. it's now the Black Duck (which is certainly worth a try).

Copperfish - on the road leading into town. You'll pass it on your right on the way in. We dined there last year and enjoyed it. I can't remember what we ate, but the food was good and I think it is a BYOB.

yeah, this place is becoming a favorite. i was there last weekend, in fact, and had a really good "spanish clams" app in addition to their great crab cakes. They offer some wines from a local vineyard (don't bother) and you can also BYO.

and...i'll join everyone else and plug Louisa's. if they are serving bluefish -- get it! you do have to call early in the week to get a reservation, since it's tiny and very very popular. you're probably out of luck for this weekend.

enjoy!

#8 john b

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Posted 31 May 2006 - 05:39 PM

Any recent visitors to The Ebbit Room? We had a great dinner there a few springs ago.
John

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#9 Jeff L

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Posted 31 May 2006 - 05:46 PM

Peaches on Sunset is fantastic and has great original seafood dishes.

this place is long gone. it's now the Black Duck (which is certainly worth a try).


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Oh yeah, that's what it was when we last ate there a couple years ago. We had a large party of 12 and they were really accommodating. Very nice presentation and the food was quite good too.

At the risk of pissing off all the No. Jersey EG'ers, I have always said that Cape May has the best restaurants in the state of NJ. It's got it all really, great restos, great shopping, great (no place like it) Victorian architecture and of course the ocean. We used to go yearly for about 12 years and then our girls got cars of their own and family vacations are now in Mexico or Europe!

#10 dbrociner

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Posted 31 May 2006 - 07:39 PM

Any recent visitors to The Ebbit Room?  We had a great dinner there a few springs ago.

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I was there 2 years ago and wouldn't go back. I felt that the price/quality ratio was way out of wack. We stayed in the hotel and that was too expensive also but at least it had a great location and a helpful staff. The restaurant, which they push on you when you stay, served lackluster food at NYC 3* prices. I can't remember what we ate, what does that tell you? I'd look elsewhere.

#11 monavano

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Posted 31 May 2006 - 07:48 PM

Regarding Louisa's, they take reservations beginning Tuesday at 4. You can only reserve from Tuesday to Tuesday. I called last night and was told since I asked for a ressy for NEXT Tuesday, I'd have to wait until next Tuesday at 4 to make it. :wacko:

We'll probably be going back to Gecko's and the Lobster House. The Black Duck is on our list as well.

#12 Jeff L

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Posted 01 June 2006 - 05:24 AM

Regarding Louisa's, they take reservations beginning Tuesday at 4. You can only reserve from Tuesday to Tuesday. I called last night and was told since I asked for a ressy for NEXT Tuesday, I'd have to wait until next Tuesday at 4 to make it.  :wacko:

We'll probably be going back to Gecko's and the Lobster House. The Black Duck is on our list as well.

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Just wait till you try calling back. From 4:00 pm on the line will be busy constantly.

#13 Deldino

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Posted 01 June 2006 - 07:05 AM

Thanks All for the suggestions. My husband and I have been going to Cape May for about 6 or 7 years for our anniversary - I have recently been converted to a seafood fan hence the request for restaurants. I like crap, shrimp, talapia - nothing to "fishy"
I have seen Louisa's and it is definately too late for us to go this weekend. I think we will try either the Black Duck or Copperfish.

Friday we will surely be at Cabana's for happy hour and snacks (our ritual start to the weekend) They have a really good panko crusted chicken tenders with 3 sauces. Perfect light meal with some crappy fries.

We will let you know how it goes when we get back.

I think we are going to try Cucina Rosa's, has anyone been there?

#14 Jeff L

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Posted 01 June 2006 - 07:31 AM

I think we are going to try Cucina Rosa's, has anyone been there?

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I'd avoid this place too. My wife almost died after eating there and being told that the shrimp did not touch the grouper on that nights' special. She is deathly allergic to shellfish and the witer insisted it would not touch her grouper, well 2 hours and a trip to the hospital later...

Afterward we both remarked that the level of cooking was not even close to worth it for the harrowing experience she had endured. Just another mediocre Italian American place imo.

Surely you can find better places even spur of the minute if you are willing to eat late

#15 Deldino

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Posted 01 June 2006 - 07:42 AM


I think we are going to try Cucina Rosa's, has anyone been there?

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I'd avoid this place too. My wife almost died after eating there and being told that the shrimp did not touch the grouper on that nights' special. She is deathly allergic to shellfish and the witer insisted it would not touch her grouper, well 2 hours and a trip to the hospital later...

Afterward we both remarked that the level of cooking was not even close to worth it for the harrowing experience she had endured. Just another mediocre Italian American place imo.

Surely you can find better places even spur of the minute if you are willing to eat late

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I am glad you told me that - We will pick another place.

#16 Deldino

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Posted 01 June 2006 - 07:47 AM

So I think we have it down - Friday probably happy hour w/snacks and then Stumpo's for casual Italian. Saturday The Blue Pig at Congress Hall followed by the Boiler Room at Congress Hall for a blues player. And then Sunday at Copper Fish. Hopefully it all goes well!

I think we might try Gecko's for lunch one day - we always pass it by and don't go for it.

#17 peteswanson

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Posted 01 June 2006 - 08:00 AM

Any word on the place that replaced Daniel's on Broadway??? My inlaws have a beautiful house in CM, and I have loved visiting there. I've been to Daniels (now closed) the Black Duck (unfortunately both times we went someone got food poisoning, although the food was decent) Front St Grill (I think thats the name) which was ok as well. Waiting to check out Washington Inn this summer...regardless, the town is beautiful, and with only one summer there I have some wonderful memories...how can one go wrong with fresh seafood and skee ball??

#18 pnapoli

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Posted 01 June 2006 - 08:52 AM

Any word on the place that replaced Daniel's on Broadway???

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it's going to be called Moonfish Grill. not open just yet -- i think it's supposed to open in about 2 weeks. i've heard there's supposed to be a sushi bar and that it will be more casual than Daniel's.

#19 KatieLoeb

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Posted 01 June 2006 - 03:07 PM

Friday we will surely be at Cabana's for happy hour and snacks (our ritual start to the weekend) They have a really good panko crusted chicken tenders with 3 sauces. Perfect light meal with some crappy fries.


Head upstairs to Martini Beach for better drinks and food. Much as I like Cabana's, there's no contest which menu is better.

Unless the crappy fries are the thing that keeps you going back... :rolleyes:

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#20 doc slaughter

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Posted 01 June 2006 - 07:06 PM

best to stay with the Washington Inn IMHO they do everything right.

#21 Jeff L

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Posted 01 June 2006 - 07:57 PM

best to stay with the Washington Inn IMHO they do everything right.

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Couldn't agree more...especially that wine cellar...and this from a true byo guy. Not to mention the place itself, really classy nothing in town compares to the elegant building and decor.

#22 Nancy HM

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Posted 02 June 2006 - 07:47 AM

We own a house in Cape May, so we're there all the time. My favorite is Peter Shield's Inn - no place prettier. Food is delicious, not exceptional, but always good.
We also love Washington Inn and the Ebbitt Room.
Every year we dress up the kids and go to a lovely, family dinner at The Chalfonte. It's become a tradition.
HATE with a passion 410 Bank Street. Why pay a fortune for mediocre food, sullen and unskilled waitstaff, and tables so close together you can smell your neighbor's dinner?

#23 Jeff L

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Posted 02 June 2006 - 08:03 AM

We own a house in Cape May, so we're there all the time.  My favorite is Peter Shield's Inn - no place prettier.  Food is delicious, not exceptional, but always good.
We also love Washington Inn and the Ebbitt Room.
Every year we dress up the kids and go to a lovely, family dinner at The Chalfonte.  It's become a tradition.
HATE with a passion 410 Bank Street.  Why pay a fortune for mediocre food, sullen and unskilled waitstaff, and tables so close together you can smell your neighbor's dinner?

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Peter Shields Inn was really quite good when it first opened and you are right about the place's beauty. I think it's dropped off food quality wise as the last time we ate there it was unremarkable.

As an aside, we always loved Waters Edge and was really sorry Neil had to pack it in. I mentioned somewhere else on this board that the landlord (Gus Andy, owner of La Mer Motor Inn) and Neil never really had any great love for each other. Story I heard was that he raised the rent so high Neil decided to move on. Too bad, always had top flight meals with service to match there. Nothing tops the view either.

Do you know what's there now? Is it another resto, we haven't been down for a few years

#24 Nancy HM

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Posted 02 June 2006 - 08:57 AM

Yes, it's another restaurant, but I can't for the life of me remember the name. However, there was a thread a year or so ago about it. Search for "Water's Edge" maybe? People had good things to say about it.
I remember biking past it and reading the menu for fun. Mixture of predictable and interesting dishes. I remember thinking it could be a place where my husband and I AND the kids could all get a meal we'd like.

#25 robert40

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Posted 02 June 2006 - 09:07 AM

No doubt Louisa's is not hurting for business. :laugh:

http://ae.philly.com...&reviewId=10926
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#26 Jeff L

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Posted 02 June 2006 - 09:26 AM

No doubt Louisa's is not hurting for business. :laugh:

http://ae.philly.com...&reviewId=10926

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Couldn't LeBan have stuck the write up of Louisa's in the middle of the damn page. Now it will be all but impossible to get in.

Also, someone should tell him Waters Edge has been closed for a good while, although he is dead on about Neil.

"Such globe-hopping flavors aren't uncommon down the Shore. And many credit Waters Edge chef/owner Neil Elsohn as one of the style's principal innovators in Cape May since he arrived 16 years ago. The restaurant still has one of the Shore's finest kitchens, whether you choose the blackened scallops slicked with ginger glaze, the sublimely tender veal with spaetzle bathed in brown butter, the Asian-scented black bass, or the dessert tortilla with bananas.

The sleek, peach-colored dining room has a contemporary polish that fits the Sting soundtrack looping through the room. But it is the wide-windowed view that I covet most, a vision of Cape May's tranquil northern beach at sunset, the dune grass and lapping waves fading in summer's long golden light. "•

#27 markabauman

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Posted 04 June 2006 - 04:47 PM

The restaurant where the Water's Edge used to be is called the Pier House. Not bad. A little expensive (so what else is new about Cape May?). Don't think any more pr could make Louisa's any more difficult to get into. Just start speed-dialing at 4 on Tuesday for that week, or just show up and take your chances as to when (or if) to come back later that night.
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#28 Jeff L

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Posted 05 June 2006 - 04:10 PM

The restaurant where the Water's Edge used to be is called the Pier House. Not bad. A little expensive (so what else is new about Cape May?). Don't think any more pr could make Louisa's any more difficult to get into. Just start speed-dialing at 4 on Tuesday for that week, or just show up and take your chances as to when (or if) to come back later that night.

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I really do love Louisa's. I think a weekend trip to CM is in order soon. All I gotta do is hit the redial button on my cell!

#29 pnapoli

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Posted 07 May 2007 - 07:51 PM

no signs of life at Copper Fish yet...most other restaurants are already open or opening this weekend.

does anyone know if they've closed? :sad:

#30 KatieLoeb

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Posted 07 May 2007 - 08:04 PM

no signs of life at Copper Fish yet...most other restaurants are already open or opening this weekend. 

does anyone know if they've closed?  :sad:

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Just got back from Cape May tonight. Copperfish looked closed when I passed it today. My friend that is proprietor of Martini Beach said she heard it's supposed to open but has seen no signs of that as of yet, nor heard anything about a definitive opening date.

Methinks it's bitten the dust.

I had a nice lunch at Lobster House. Cape May Salts and Littlenecks on the half shell, Snapper soup and lobster salad. Basic stuff that was exactly as I wished it to be.

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