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#1 The Doctor

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Posted 29 August 2005 - 10:56 AM

Hi All,

Headed down to the Outer Banks starting Saturday and into the following week. (I'll be staying in Southern Shores, south of Duck and North of Kitty Hawk.)

About a dozen of us have a house rented and will be doing most of our own cooking, but is there anything not to be missed?

With so many people and varying schedules, we won't sit down to anything fancy, but I'm sure we'll do some exploring, so I thought I'd see if anyone here was familiar with the territory.

Are there any walk in places where you can grab some fresh seafood (even maybe to cook up ourselves?), or maybe some BBQ? Where do the locals go?

Thanks for your attention!



#2 bubbaque

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Posted 31 August 2005 - 09:36 AM

[Wrightsville Beach]
I have recently returned from a week-long vacation in WB and, as a public service to others who may follow ,shall offer the following observations.

First of all, we shared a beach house with three other couples so we prepared communal dinners four of the nights while we were there. As for restuarants, we had several trips out to eat.

Sweet and Savoury is an excellent choice for breakfast (and from the quality of the ingredients, for lunch and dinner as well I would wager) and close to the beach to boot. I kinda regret only visiting it once.

Hotdogs seem to be the ubiqiutouis lunch food. Several places, including the pick of the litter, the Trolley Stop (?), will actually deliver to you on the beach! The Palm Room (actually a divey beach pub on Salisbury Street) seems to hold universal acclaim from the locals for the best dogs in town. However on three trips to it, the "hotdog dude" never seemed to be available to man the grill. And the bartenders had no interest in filling in (however, if you just need to get out of the sun for a little bit, the Palm does offer free pool, foosball, darts and cheap beers until six).

We visited three restaurants for supper (dinner if you prefer) and had a couple of good experiences and one disappointing:

Jackson's Big Oak BBQ - seven miles from the beach on S. Kerr in Wilmington. Although I prefer my ribs with a KC or Memphis dry-rub, these unseasoned ribs were meaty and fall-off-the-bone tender, even if not as smokey as I expected. With a little bit of the good home-made vinegar sauce or hot sauces on the table it was quite good. The chicken was quite good as well. Excellent sides- especially the hush puppies and cornsticks.

But the star was the pulled pork - one of the top five I've ever had. I took a side-trip on the way out of town and bought a pound to go. My only qualm with the place was the lack of a wood-pile out back (admittedly there was a huge locked shed right next to the back door, so who knows).

The Fish House - right in Wrightsville on the Intracoastal with trawlers all around it. Sounds promising right? Fuggetaboutit! I'd rather have gone to a Shoney's. Only redeeming factor was a helpful and...well...cute...waitstaff.

22 North - on Lumina in Wrightsville Beach and finalist for 2005 Restaurant of the Year in Wilmingtonian(?) magazine. Superlatives fail me! One of the best seafood restaurants I've EVER been to.

Since they buy their seafood from Motts Channel Seafood each morning the menu specials change with whatever Mott's trawlers brought in. Everyone at our table, with the exception of your's truly ordered the flounder and grouper entrees of the night and both dishes might well have been the best fish I've ever tasted. Although a rather odd combination, our waitress suggested people try the mashed potatoes with their entree. Excellent call! Buttery, just slightly garlicy and a hint of pepper as well. I would have ate a plate of that alone.

I bucked the trend and had the shrimp scampi, mainly because I wanted to taste local as opposed to farm raised shrimp for once. Generous mound of shrimp serverd up on a fettucine which proved an excellent mop for the sauce (which might have been better served with a tad more garlic, but that would be a petty quip).

Appetizers: and excellent crab and spinach dip and chicken wings which included a good traditional buffalo style sauce and a honey/ginger sauce that garnered 22 North the "Best Wings in Town" award from the local version of Washingtonian magazine.

As an aside I should note the drinks. Most of our table ordered martini's. Each person got a glass and a shaker which held three glasses worth of martini! Price? $6.50! Heck, my gin & tonics were just $2.50.

One further note on 22 North - it has a huge bar in the back (bigger than the restaurant in the front in fact) and after 10 p.m. they start clearing tables out of the front. Come midnight it is apparently the "in" scene on the island. Although we weren't in anyway rushed, by the time we left at 10:30 p.m. the transition was becoming very obvious. So, if you're ever there get seated by 9 p.m.

Although I've never been to WB, NC before, I've already resolved to go again next year just to justify visiting 22 North again.

However, food shopping in Wrightsville was a trial. Robert's Grocery Store (in business since 1919!) is the only grocery on the island and has a limited selection of fresh meats, but a serviceable selection of fresh vegetables. A similarly decent wine and beer selection as well. Fortunately, probably just about a mile over the Intracoastal Waterway (maybe three miles from the beach) is a Harris-Teeter that offers everything you need. Not walkable like Robert's, and kinda hidden off of U.S 74, but close enough. Mott's is very close by as well.

I endeared myself to the housemates by firing up the house Weber and bbqing a boston butt (regular price just $1.89 a lb!!!) overnight and during the one day it rained and there was little else to do except play UNO and Scrabble anyway. It wasn't too bad, but not as good as Jackson's either - I couldn't find any oak or hickory. And a whole grouper (en papillote) and shrimp (skewered) fresh from Mott's on another evening.

#3 Sthitch

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Posted 31 August 2005 - 01:41 PM

I go to Topsail every year, and have found that for the most part I am best off cooking myself. I will need to give 22 North a try next summer.
You should take the time to get some shrimp right off the boat and cook them yourself. I find that if you create a flavorful pot of water, bring it to a boil, turn off the heat, and dump in the shrimp. It only takes about a minute to cook them through to be just turning opaque.

#4 oliveDC

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Posted 31 August 2005 - 02:46 PM

Robert's chicken salad sandwiches and Trolley Stop dogs sustained me through many a summer at Wrightsville. Glad you had fun down there.

We've been going to Holden Beach about 30 miles south for as long as I've been alive. One of our favorite parts? No restaurants (well none worth patronizing - my favorite is one with a giant shark crashing through the front...very inviting). Just Cap'n Pete's seafood under the bridge for fresh off the boat shrimp, fish and crabs.

It's funny how some people's idea of vacation is never cooking and for others it's having time to cook every day. :lol:

PS - As an NC native, I LOVE your signature Stitch.
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#5 oliveDC

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Posted 31 August 2005 - 02:49 PM

My uncle owns a place called the Red Drum Taphouse near mile 10 or 11 (?). Local hangout with great fried oysters. I haven't been in about five years, but if they're still around, you may also want to check out Tortuga's Lie for some local color.
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#6 bubbaque

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Posted 31 August 2005 - 07:00 PM

Sthitch and oliveDC:

For my future reference, I read quite a bit about Calabash style dining while I was down there. Would it be worth a road-trip down the coast? Or will I find just as good in Carolina Beach, Holden and Topsail?

#7 Sthitch

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Posted 01 September 2005 - 08:42 AM

I have never driven down to Calabash so I cannot say. Like I mentioned before, I generally cook while I am there. I find that it is calming for me to spend a day in the kitchen while my screaming nieces and nephew are roaming the beach.

#8 Sthitch

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Posted 01 September 2005 - 08:43 AM

PS - As an NC native, I LOVE your signature Stitch.

Dennis Rogers writes for the Raleigh News & Observer, and has proclaimed himself the "Oracle of the Holy Grub".
I should say that the best food I find is on the way to the beach when I stop in Ayden, or Goldsboro for some BBQ. Next year I hope to try B's in Greenville.

Edited by Sthitch, 01 September 2005 - 08:47 AM.


#9 oliveDC

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Posted 02 September 2005 - 09:00 AM

Sthitch and oliveDC:

  For my future reference, I read quite a bit about Calabash style dining while I was down there. Would it be worth a road-trip down the coast? Or will I find just as good in Carolina Beach, Holden and Topsail?

To be honest, all Calabash dining amounts to is deep fried seafood served in portions large enough to induce cardiac arrest. If you've found a good fried seafood place to get your fix, then there's probably no point in driving down there. That said, it can be fun working through your heap of greasy seafood in one of the dingy places down there.
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#10 Capital Icebox

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Posted 02 September 2005 - 10:12 AM

Headed down to Corolla in the Outer Banks for all of next week -- anyone have any suggestions? We'll be dining in most of the time, but I'd love to hear of some good seafood and BBQ places. The Red Drum sounds right up our alley.
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#11 The Doctor

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Posted 02 September 2005 - 12:26 PM

Thanks for the reply, Olive.

Mr. Icebox,

I posted the same question on egullet and got a response or two. Scroll to the bottom to read the post from Chiantiglace. It sounds like the very information we're looking for:

http://forums.egulle...showtopic=73335

#12 JLK

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Posted 02 September 2005 - 01:04 PM

Are there any good bars/hangouts in the Southern Shores area? Live music, etc.?

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#13 The Doctor

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Posted 08 September 2005 - 02:01 PM

Well I'm back so I thought I'd give a brief report.

The house we got was so swank and so close to the beach that I didn't leave the compound the entire time I was there. But I did manage to stop at the High Cotton BBQ place on the way out of town since it was right on the way.

While not the best I've ever had, it was pretty darn good stuff, and cheap. For $4.95, I got a pulled pork sandwich combo that came with two sides and cornbread. One of the sides was a Brunswick stew, which was filled with pulled chicken and vegetables. I'm still impressed that it was considered a side when it was hearty enough to be a main course. The corn bread was unique in that it was more like a corn brownie. I think I would have preferred traditional, but it wasn't bad. The pork itself was also tasty.

#14 RaisaB

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Posted 17 January 2006 - 11:53 PM

We have a house in the OBX which we go to usually during off season. We went this past weekend and my favorite restaurant was closed for renovations.The Blue Point Bar and Grill. This place could compete with alot of the restaurants here in DC. Check it out hereBlue Point

I also noticed that a bunch of new places have opened. Did anyone go this past summer? Any reviews on the new places? Thanks, I am going back in a few weeks to work on the house.

#15 Free Wilma

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Posted 22 January 2006 - 03:36 PM

We went last summer but I don't think we went anywere "new". Here's a report I made on Chowhound shortly after returning.....

Just returned from the Outer Banks and had three good-great dining experiences. We went to Meridian 42 for an evening out without the kids. It's a lovely space with a Mediterranian flair....but their AC could use a little help. It was pretty steamy. We started off with the White truffle foudue which was decadant and everyone was surprised how much they enjoyed. Perfect for sharing. The table also had two orders of the tuna sashimi, which was raved about by all. All three salad options were quite tasty and had lovely presentation. For entrees, a couple had the crabcake special. They enjoyed both the crabcake and the monster stuffed pastas as a side, but felt the crabcake would have been better if served a little more simply. The sea scallops were big and plump, but slightly over seared, in my opinion. The shrimp on the side out-shined the scallops. The rest of the table ordered the Pistachio crusted white fish (I think it was halibut??) and enjoyed it greatly. Desserts were ordered...but I can't remember any expect the lemon-buttermild gelato, which was refreshing and lovely.

The next evening we took the kids and headed to long-time favorite Tortuga's Lie. The restaurant has such a great beachy feel; without feeling touisty. The staff was terrific; especially when dealing with a group of 13! There were plenty of options on the regular menu for the kids (who got to sit alone and order for themselves!) Two of the adults had the steamed seafood platters (Shrimp, clams and Alaskan King Crab Legs). I was sorry I hadn't gotten the same. I had the grilled pineapple shrimp kabobs with black beans and rice. Quite tasty but slightly over cooked.

Our last evening we stopped in to the Kill Devil Grill for dinner with the kids. Several in our group had been before and had been itching to return. We all had the steak and cheese eggrolls for starters. They were rich and cheesy with an unnecessary marinara sacue on the side for dipping. The kids menu was terrific with VERY generous servings. I had the shrimp and cheese grits which were terrific! It was the first time during the week that the seafood I'd ordered hadn't been slightly overcooked. Two at the table had the ribs which were absolutely fall-off-the-bone tender. YUM! Two ordered a couple of their entree salads which looked fresh and nicely topped with tuna and a crabcake, respectively. While the menu at the Kill Devil Grill is somewhat more narrow (and not as beachy), the quality of the food was somewhat higher and cheaper than that at Tortuga's Lie.

All three restaurants come with solid recommendations and the hopes of returning in the future.

Edited to add: I decided to take a quick gander at Meridian 42's menu to see if I could remember any more about our dinner there. They have obviously updated their menu for winter seasonality and it sounds great. So my comments in regards to the August dinner may no longer be relevant. But I'd still happily give it another try based on my positive experience.

Edited by Free Wilma, 22 January 2006 - 03:41 PM.

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#16 Free Wilma

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Posted 31 July 2006 - 10:27 AM

Anyone been to the OBX this summer? Any new places to recommend? General we do at least one night out without kids. We're staying in Nags Head so I'm not as interested in driving all the way up to Corolla. We enjoyed Meridan 42, Tortugas Lie and Kill Devil Grill greatly last summer.

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#17 DrewTrautmann

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Posted 22 August 2006 - 10:19 PM

Are there any good restaurants in the Wilmington area

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#18 Sthitch

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Posted 22 August 2006 - 11:48 PM

Are there any good restaurants in the Wilmington area

Only if you like fried seafood. Other than that I have yet to find anything worth while. I understand that half way between Wilimington, and Jacksonville there is a decent restaurant, I will try to find out the name of it. This would only be a realistic option if you were in the Topsail/Surf City area.

#19 thistle

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Posted 23 August 2006 - 07:05 AM

Is it Indigo Landing? My mom lives in that area & she told me that she & some friends ate there the other night & that it was delicious...

#20 mame11

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Posted 23 August 2006 - 09:12 AM

Wow. I had many good meals in downtown Wilmington when I spent a summer there during law school. In fact the original Port City Java is in downtown Wilmington. I used to love Deluxe

These places look extremely promising:

Portland Grille
Water Street Restaurant


Also, there was this total greasy spoon downtown that I loved for the atmosphere and grease.

If you don't like beach food, then venture to the adorable downtown for what is probably not bad food at all...

#21 ICD

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Posted 23 August 2006 - 10:34 AM

Wow. I had many good meals in downtown Wilmington when I spent a summer there during law school. In fact the original Port City Java is in downtown Wilmington. I used to love Deluxe

These places look extremely promising:

Portland Grille
Water Street Restaurant
Also, there was this total greasy spoon downtown that I loved for the atmosphere and grease.

If you don't like beach food, then venture to the adorable downtown for what is probably not bad food at all...

We had a very pleasant dinner at the Water Street Restaurant this summer. Very friendly. pubby atmosphere. The food was not spectactular, but quite good, and you're across the street from the river.

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#22 DrewTrautmann

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Posted 23 August 2006 - 02:21 PM

Thanks to all, if there are any down home joints serving local seafood they would be much appreciated too.

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#23 thistle

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Posted 23 August 2006 - 03:33 PM

Down-home joints-RiverView restaurant in Sneads Ferry, good fried rock shrimp, home-made pies, close to Topsail Beach, -unfortunately , these local places are being phased out....

#24 flygirl

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Posted 23 August 2006 - 04:29 PM

what's the deal with Wilmington? I have never been but friends are considering buying down there. is it a good beach vacation location?

#25 thistle

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Posted 23 August 2006 - 05:25 PM

I guess I can answer this-Wilmington is a smaller town, w/ lots of northern immigrants. Beach property is probably priced a little lower than some places-Wilmington has some small businesses, a state university-UNC-W, but if you want privacy & quiet, go a few miles north to Topsail Beach-I grew up in this area & Topsail is still very isolated & quiet-there is literally nothing in this area-the beaches are still wide open (& not totally safe, there are undertows in the area)....

#26 thistle

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Posted 28 August 2006 - 03:07 PM

I went down to visit my mom this past weekend-I couldn't believe the amount of houses that have sprouted up & the prices!-we only went out to eat once, at the Riverview, in Sneads Ferry. This restaurant has been here for a long time & does most things right, I had the fried shrimp lunch special, w/ fried okra & slaw. Their slaw wasn't as good as it used to be, but the hushpuppies were excellent-I asked for more with our hot crab dip. On the way out, we hit Dr. RootBeer's Hall of Foam & the kids got root beer floats....the beaches were beautiful, as they have always been...

#27 MC Horoscope

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Posted 04 October 2006 - 08:15 PM

What do you think of 1587 in Manteo? Turn at any of the streets marked waterfront, and it's down in that Festival Park area, in a bed and breakfast called Tranquil House Inn.

My wife and I were there not too long ago and loved it! She had sea bass with pineapple compote and almond risotto, with Asian sesame sauce. I wish I could remember the name of my dish, but it was a veal cutlet rolled around a hearty Italian sausage flavored with hints of pistachio, nutmeg, clove and cinammon. It was almost middle eastern tasting. Dessert was a strawberry/banana creme brule that we absolutely scarfed! Wine was a California Voignier. Nice decor and soft, romantic lighting, soundfront! I had a great view of the kitchen. Service was very friendly. It was just one night, but we thought the whole experience compared favorably to what we get in DC.

Oh and another one. It's not a new place at all (in fact it is on the location where the Wright Brothers telegraphed the world "Hey suckers. We just flew an airplane!"), but the Black Pelican at mile 4 on the Virginia Dare road in Kitty Hawk has great pizza! Not 2 Amys but still quite good! The one we like was called Chesapeake. Had crab meat, corn and bacon. Thin crust, not much white sauce at all. Go back in the smoking section by the bar and it has a real beach bar, relaxing feeling. I wish I were there tonight!

#28 Joe H

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Posted 05 October 2006 - 08:19 PM

What do you think of 1587 in Manteo? Turn at any of the streets marked waterfront, and it's down in that Festival Park area, in a bed and breakfast called Tranquil House Inn.

My wife and I were there not too long ago and loved it! She had sea bass with pineapple compote and almond risotto, with Asian sesame sauce. I wish I could remember the name of my dish, but it was a veal cutlet rolled around a hearty Italian sausage flavored with hints of pistachio, nutmeg, clove and cinammon. It was almost middle eastern tasting. Dessert was a strawberry/banana creme brule that we absolutely scarfed! Wine was a California Voignier. Nice decor and soft, romantic lighting, soundfront! I had a great view of the kitchen. Service was very friendly. It was just one night, but we thought the whole experience compared favorably to what we get in DC.

Oh and another one. It's not a new place at all (in fact it is on the location where the Wright Brothers telegraphed the world "Hey suckers. We just flew an airplane!"), but the Black Pelican at mile 4 on the Virginia Dare road in Kitty Hawk has great pizza! Not 2 Amys but still quite good! The one we like was called Chesapeake. Had crab meat, corn and bacon. Thin crust, not much white sauce at all. Go back in the smoking section by the bar and it has a real beach bar, relaxing feeling. I wish I were there tonight!

Great post! I wish I was there tonight...

#29 Spiral Stairs

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Posted 05 September 2007 - 04:21 PM

A few data points from a week in the Outer Banks. (Thanks to the burdens of a one-year-old, our dining out was limited.)

Bad Bean Taqueria (Corolla, in Tim Buck II): Take-out place (with counter service and tables too) with really good tacos and burritos. I had the fish burrito. The fish (mahi mahi, I believe) was grilled to order and served with an optional moderately hot, quite tasty habanero sauce. My co-eaters enjoyed their stuff too, though I didn't taste anything else. My wife particularly liked her shredded (braised!) beef burrito. Not cheap -- my fish burrito was $13.50 -- but you're definitely getting food a notch above typical burrito joint fare. Nota bene: Check your bag. Our take-out order was their last of the day (inexplicably, like many things in what seems to be a bustling area, it closes at 8:30), and they either forgot to include the sides promised on the menu or slid one by us in their haste to close up shop.

Route 12 Steak and Seafood Co. (also in Tim Buck II): Don't bother. I guess our expectations were a little elevated because it is a place that advertises the name of its chef as a source of pride. But it didn't measure up. My crabcakes were dry and tough -- a crabcake should not resist being cut by the tines of a fork. A co-eater had to ask for an extra bowl of feta for a dish advertised as a shrimp and feta pasta that appeared not to include any of the advertised cheese. She found the dish bland anyway. My wife's ribs were gooey and average. An appetizer of calamari was typically overbreaded. (Another appetizer of buffalo wings in a Thai chili sauce was pretty good though.) The decor was beach shacky but not particularly charming.

Blue Point (Duck): Ah, this is the stuff. We had a really wonderful meal here, and I would put it on the shortest list of places I would definitely return to on our next trip. I can't recount everything, but my seared tuna appetizer -- served sashimi-style and quite beautifully -- was delicious. A co-eater had a nicely chunky she-crab soup as an appetizer. As an entree, I had a saute of crab and salmon that was rich and delicious. My wife's pork chop was huge, with a properly (not overly) sweet glaze. A co-eater's crabcakes looked like thick, lightly breaded scallops and were wonderful. (Fork-tender, too, thank you.) Desserts were terrific. I got a chocolate torte, but I quickly wished I had ordered the Kentucky bourbon tart or the blueberry cheesecake, with ice-cold fresh blueberries. Service was excellent; our waitress knew the wine list well and freely shared her opinions of various menu items. I dug the vibe of the place too -- upscale diner (black-and-white checkered floor; red vinyl booths; but with (self-promotional) stemware and lovely presentations). The view over the water (sound-side) is probably very pretty, but it was already pitch-black by the time we arrived. It's not cheap, but it ain't ridiculous either -- four apps, four entrees, four desserts, three cocktails, one $40 bottle of wine, and some coffees ended up at about $330 with tip. I'm told the bathrooms are nice, too.
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#30 Sthitch

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Posted 27 July 2008 - 05:46 PM

If anyone finds themselves in the Beaufort area, you would be well served with a breakfast at Blackstone's. They make a corned beef hash that is worth a detour from Charleston just to sample.

#31 Ericandblueboy

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Posted 23 May 2009 - 07:40 AM

Heading to Kitty Hawk tomorrow. Any recommendations for fine dining?

#32 RaisaB

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Posted 23 May 2009 - 07:50 AM

Heading to Kitty Hawk tomorrow. Any recommendations for fine dining?

Definately Blue Point Grill in Duck. In Kitty Hawk is there once sister restaurant on Croton, it has a number for a name....

#33 Ericandblueboy

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Posted 30 May 2009 - 07:23 AM

We somewhat enjoyed both Blue Point in Duck and Ocean Blvd in Kitty Hawk. At Blue Point we tried the caesar salad, she-crab soup, risotto with duck confit, seared scallops, grilled quail and a roasted pork belly special. The risotto did not taste like it was made with arborio rice. I suppose since I was expecting creamy melt in your mouth rice, this was a little disappointing. The food was generally on the saltier side of norm but perfectly cooked. If I go back, I'd do the quail again (it was juicy and succulent).

At O-Blvd, the menu is a little more exotic - we tried a cheese plate, seared tuna sashimi, OB skillet, duck confit strudel, and shrimp and orecciette pasta. The cheese plate was a selection of boring cheeses, the tuna sashimi was a mess of food (fried wonton wrapper topped with salmon roe and nori pickled cucumber salad in addition to the tuna, this was supposed to be an appetizer), the OB Skillet was sausage, cheese, tomatoes and garlic swimming in a pool of oil, the shrimp overcooked and the housemade pasta rather dense. The OB skillet is visually daunting but tasted good (once you fish the ingredients out and put them on the crostini like self-assembled pizza). The tuna sashimi wasn't the highest grade of tuna but again it tasted good. Our friend who ordered tuna as an entree got a well done steak even though he asked for it medium rare.

Both restaurants have small menus (what you see on their website and a few specials).

ETA - Kill Devil Grill makes a really good Redneck Cuban sandwich. Pizzaz Pizza is okay (don't go to Cosmo's between 3-5 because they're closed). Bowling in Nags Head is $5 per game with $3.5 for shoes rental.

#34 DannyNoonan

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Posted 08 June 2009 - 04:04 PM

Just back from Corolla yesterday. Dined, as always, several times at Bad Bean Taqueria. We love this place. I have never been impressed with the dining out options in the northern beaches so was glad to happen into Bad Bean a few years ago. I have always found their food to be unpretentious, nicely prepared, and full of good ingredients. It doesn't strive to be more than it is - a burrito place in a strip mall at the beach - but they could have settled for something far worse and matched their peers down there. As it stands, they try harder and it shows. My wife and I always get the fish tacos and shrimp tacos with guacamole and rice & beans on the side, washed down by several margaritas. Not cheap for a taco place but well worth the trip if you're down there.

Also tried Fin & Claw, which is a new place I believe. It's in the Tim Buck 2 shopping center where another restaurant used to be (Groupers maybe?). Focus on fresh seafood as well as seasonal and local produce. That's a refreshing approach from what seafood buffet type restaurants down there that seem content with shoveling vast amounts of low quality ingredients in front of customers that don't seem to mind. I have always minded and that's why we didn't eat out much down there. Fin & Claw was encouraging though. We started with calamari appetizer, which was nicely fried and served with grilled peppers, onion, and pepper purees. Not overwhelming but solid and a nice way to start. I had the grilled fresh catch, which was mahi. Served with sauteed mushrooms and some kind of shrimp dumplings. I liked the fish, it was nicely cooked and the mushrooms but didn't care for the dumplings. My wife had sea scallops served with sweet corn and asparagus. Her entree was quite good. Nicely prepared scallops that matched well with the accompaniments. Service was excellent as well. The waiter was very accomodating of our 2yr old - offering a smaller portion of a number of things on the main menu. Nice to have more than chicken fingers or grilled cheese to choose from. He also helpful in recommending a nice Cono Sur verdejo that was refreshing and paired well with our entrees.

I hope these two places mark a trend in the direction of dining in the Outer Banks away from all-you-can-eat formerly frozen seafood places with fishing paraphenalia on the walls and toward more thoughtful cuisine that takes advantage of the bountiful seafood and produce the area has to offer.
Sean Flanagan
Arlington, VA
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"His dinner is getting all cold & eaten"

#35 DannyNoonan

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Posted 10 June 2009 - 09:26 AM

Sorry, correction to post above - it was a Cono Sur viognier, not verdejo.
Sean Flanagan
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#36 Pete

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Posted 24 August 2009 - 12:03 PM

Any other recent updates from OBX? We'll be staying in Corolla next week.

Lisa: Do we have any food that wasn't brutally slaughtered?
Homer: Well, I think the veal died of loneliness.


#37 DannyNoonan

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Posted 24 August 2009 - 12:27 PM

Any other recent updates from OBX? We'll be staying in Corolla next week.

Unfortunately I won't be back there until next summer so nothing further than the dispatch from earlier this summer. Let me know what you end up doing and what you think when you get back.
Sean Flanagan
Arlington, VA
"I am affiliated with District Taco."
"His dinner is getting all cold & eaten"

#38 Al Dente

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Posted 25 August 2009 - 06:44 AM

Any tips on Hatteras and Ocracoke?

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Seafood! The Mercedes of food!


#39 KMango

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Posted 25 August 2009 - 09:22 PM

Any tips on Hatteras and Ocracoke?

The Back Porch restaurant has been outstanding my past few visits to Ocracoke. The focus is on fresh, local/seasonal flavors with deft seasoning and artful, yet simple, plating. Seating on the actual porch is a bonus.

And although not edible (unless you are keenly in need of insoluble fiber), check out the clothing store called Natural Selections, hidden away elsewhere on the island. Tons of hemp, tencel, silk, cotton, linen, and lots of designs not seen elsewhere.
-KMango

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#40 Joe H

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Posted 30 August 2009 - 08:17 PM

Topsail Beach, eh, Shitch? Carol and I just came back from Landfall in Wilmington with a few days in Wrightsville Beach. We fell in love with this and of all the places in America that I would consider moving to Landfall would be at the head of my list. But I don't think we're moving....

Still, we really fell in love with this area. Wilmington, too, although it seems rather desolate for serious foodies.

#41 ktmoomau

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Posted 31 August 2009 - 10:00 AM

Topsail Beach, eh, Shitch? Carol and I just came back from Landfall in Wilmington with a few days in Wrightsville Beach. We fell in love with this and of all the places in America that I would consider moving to Landfall would be at the head of my list. But I don't think we're moving....

Still, we really fell in love with this area. Wilmington, too, although it seems rather desolate for serious foodies.

Joe,

Question: The chef that ran Deluxe had a tiny whole in the wall seafood joint called Catch. He was going to move it to a bigger space, and I hoped it would far well as it was the best meal by far that we had in Wilmington. Do you know if it is still there, still good? I am crossing my fingers. Hubby's grandparents live in the outskirts of Wilmington so I like to keep a pulse on what is going on- we will probably head down that way soon. A quick Chow search would probably work better, but I figured I would ask.

But I learned fast how to keep my head up 'cause I
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Wants to grab the yoke from the pilot and just
Fly the whole mess into the sea. The Shins
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#42 JPW

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Posted 31 August 2009 - 10:35 AM

Joe,

Question: The chef that ran Deluxe had a tiny whole in the wall seafood joint called Catch. He was going to move it to a bigger space, and I hoped it would far well as it was the best meal by far that we had in Wilmington. Do you know if it is still there, still good? I am crossing my fingers. Hubby's grandparents live in the outskirts of Wilmington so I like to keep a pulse on what is going on- we will probably head down that way soon. A quick Chow search would probably work better, but I figured I would ask.

Catch is still there. Didn't try it as it is a little way out of downtown Wilmington, but from the opinion of the fine folks at the Hilton it is still good.

We had dinner at Dock Street Oyster Bar in Wilmington, which was quite acceptable, even good for a Cheap Eats spot. (boiled shrimp, seafood quesadilla, jerked grouper). They were super nice to Peanut and Edgy (ages almost 5 and 1).

Cape Fear Wine and Beer is a really funky bar/package store with some really cool beers and an excellent EXCELLENT juke box.

Joe
skewing old


#43 ktmoomau

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Posted 31 August 2009 - 10:45 AM

Catch is still there. Didn't try it as it is a little way out of downtown Wilmington, but from the opinion of the fine folks at the Hilton it is still good.

We had dinner at Dock Street Oyster Bar in Wilmington, which was quite acceptable, even good for a Cheap Eats spot. (boiled shrimp, seafood quesadilla, jerked grouper). They were super nice to Peanut and Edgy (ages almost 5 and 1).

Cape Fear Wine and Beer is a really funky bar/package store with some really cool beers and an excellent EXCELLENT juke box.

Thanks for the info, definitely places I will add to the list.

But I learned fast how to keep my head up 'cause I
Know I got this side of me that
Wants to grab the yoke from the pilot and just
Fly the whole mess into the sea. The Shins
www.rrbmdk.com
www.katelintaylor.com


#44 Joe H

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Posted 31 August 2009 - 07:35 PM

We stayed at that Hilton. The community of Landfall, really, has nothing in common with downtown Wilmington. Probably more in common with Reston than anywhere else with a huge helping of Great Falls or McLean. Wilmington itself was really interesting on the Friday and Saturday nights we were there. If I was still in college or grad school (no to both, a "no" many times over!!! I am old!) Wilmington might be my Mecca, certainly a manifestation of the greatest good for someone who is into partying. Some historical character and a huge number of bars, many of which served food, characterized Wilmington for me. Still, I liked it. If I was in my late 20's or '30's I would have felt that I'd realized Nirvana.

#45 Robert Rymarz

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Posted 02 September 2009 - 10:38 PM

Spent last week in Corolla. Can't escape the seafood buffet nightmares since I returned. :rolleyes:

#46 B.A.R.

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Posted 04 September 2009 - 12:44 PM

I was in Corolla the week before. Most nights we spent cooking at the house and walking on the beach, as we stayed in the 4x4 area and getting to "town" isn't very conveient. We did have two diiners out, one was at some horrible Italian joint in the Food Lion parking lot when I just wanted something quick for the kids.

Cara and I had a very good meal at Metropolis (south of the Currituck Club in a small little shopping center). Great beer selection, truly better than 95% of DC establishments. Very good cocktail menu as well. The wine list was average compared to beer and cocktail list. The tapas-style menu read well, and tasted even better. I was duly impressed with what they were turning out, rather quickly I might add, from an extraordinarily small kitchen. Highlights included the pork loin with soba noodle special, scallops, tuna sashimi, well sourced cheese plate (served at appropriate temperature), and the spinach tagliatelle special.

Easily the best meal I've had north of Duck in the five plus years we have been going there, despite the service being laughably bad. How bad? After waiting 10 minutes to be greeted by the host, I waited 30 minutes to get my first drink. When I finally got the bartenders attention, I asked him to make me a Dark and Stormy every time he made a drink, and just keep them coming. To his undying credit, he did just that and all was right in the world. With 60+ seats and only three front of the house personnel, I've got to think that many of the summer staff took early retirement around the time of my visit. All other aspects of the restaurant seemed very well thought out and I'll definitely be back.

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#47 Robert Rymarz

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Posted 04 September 2009 - 08:05 PM

I was in Corolla the week before. Most nights we spent cooking at the house and walking on the beach, as we stayed in the 4x4 area and getting to "town" isn't very conveient. We did have two diiners out, one was at some horrible Italian joint in the Food Lion parking lot when I just wanted something quick for the kids.

Cara and I had a very good meal at Metropolis (south of the Currituck Club in a small little shopping center). Great beer selection, truly better than 95% of DC establishments. Very good cocktail menu as well. The wine list was average compared to beer and cocktail list. The tapas-style menu read well, and tasted even better. I was duly impressed with what they were turning out, rather quickly I might add, from an extraordinarily small kitchen. Highlights included the pork loin with soba noodle special, scallops, tuna sashimi, well sourced cheese plate (served at appropriate temperature), and the spinach tagliatelle special.

Easily the best meal I've had north of Duck in the five plus years we have been going there, despite the service being laughably bad. How bad? After waiting 10 minutes to be greeted by the host, I waited 30 minutes to get my first drink. When I finally got the bartenders attention, I asked him to make me a Dark and Stormy every time he made a drink, and just keep them coming. To his undying credit, he did just that and all was right in the world. With 60+ seats and only three front of the house personnel, I've got to think that many of the summer staff took early retirement around the time of my visit. All other aspects of the restaurant seemed very well thought out and I'll definitely be back.

I also was in the 4x4 area and certainly agree about driving to town. It was our first vacation in the area and I had no idea how isolated it is.
Wish I would have known about Metropolis as Jimmy's Seafood Buffet was terrible.

#48 monavano

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Posted 04 September 2009 - 08:18 PM

I also was in the 4x4 area and certainly agree about driving to town. It was our first vacation in the area and I had no idea how isolated it is.
Wish I would have known about Metropolis as Jimmy's Seafood Buffet was terrible.

Mr. MV and I will be staying in Corrolla in the near future, and I was wondering what is the 4x4 area? Also, are there good markets and places to procure fresh local seafood to prepare at home? From the sounds of it, there aren't a lot of dining out options--how far are you driving if you go to beaches farther south to fine good victuals?
TIA

#49 Pete

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Posted 15 September 2009 - 10:27 AM

We were in Corolla, NC 2 weeks ago and managed to eat fairly well. Many of our meals were carryout, which I have noted.

Bad Bean Taqueria – Located in the Timbuck II shopping center. This place is awesome, so we ate here twice. The fish tacos (with Mahi-Mahi) were incredible, and the jicama slaw that it was served with put it over-the-top. Even their basic beef taco was terrific, as they use a brisket cut, which had a terrific slow-cooked flavor. Their margaritas are terrific as well.

Sooey’s BBQ – A carry-out meal. Decent fried chicken provided by a staff of a-holes. The ribs that I got were terrible! They tasted as if they were boiled to death, thrown on the grill for 30 seconds, slathered with sauce, and had a strange smell. My wife’s ribs were better, for some reason.

North Banks Restaurant & Raw Bar – Located in the Timbuck II shopping center. Another carry-out meal. Their broiled crabcakes were possibly the best crabcakes that I have ever had. The crab had a wonderful fresh, sweet flavor with a minimal binder. They offer fried crabcakes as well, but I see no reason to order anything other than the broiled. The crabcakes came with zucchini and mashed potatoes, both of which were really good. Boiled peel-and-eat shrimp were fairly good, while the “Oysters Vince” (Freshly Shucked Oysters, topped with Applewood Smoked Bacon, Chopped Pistachios and a Champagne Beurre Blanc) were tasty, but were more of a showcase for the bacon and pistachios than the oysters.

Metropolis – A martini and tapas restaurant located in Corolla close to the Duck border. This was our only “grown-up” dinner, and we had a very nice time. None of the tapas stood out as “terrific”, but none was bad, and I would definitely return here. The items we enjoyed most were probably the salmon tartar (a special), the duck salami that was part of the cheese plate with charcuterie, and the truffled housemade "tater tots" that came with the beef tenderloin.

Pine Island Diner – we had a very nice breakfast here one morning. Pancakes, waffles, and omelets were all thoroughly enjoyed. They claim to use “Organic And All Natural Products When Possible” and their slightly higher prices than a standard diner does reflect that.

Flying Dutchman – Located in the same shopping center as Metropolis, this was another carryout meal. We ordered WAY too much food here. We enjoyed the Corn Fritters, which were served a with roasted red pepper remoulade. For my entrée, I ordered the Cracklin Pork Shank, which was crispy on the outside and fork-tender on the inside. This thing was Flintsonian big and would have fed a small army on its own. My wife had the Seafood Boil (Shrimp, clams, blue crab, andouille sausage, red potatoes and corn on the cob with drawn butter and the pot jus) which was really good, but required more “work” than we wanted since we were exhausted. They also have some really good salads.

Lisa: Do we have any food that wasn't brutally slaughtered?
Homer: Well, I think the veal died of loneliness.


#50 B.A.R.

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Posted 16 September 2009 - 09:54 AM

Metropolis – A martini and tapas restaurant located in Corolla close to the Duck border. This was our only “grown-up” dinner, and we had a very nice time. None of the tapas stood out as “terrific”, but none was bad, and I would definitely return here. The items we enjoyed most were probably the salmon tartar (a special), the duck salami that was part of the cheese plate with charcuterie, and the truffled housemade "tater tots" that came with the beef tenderloin.

None of those items were on the menu when we were there, so it's good to know they actually change their menu. In such a transient environment, you could rest on your laurels.

Brian Reymann
I'm in the business but content here solely my own and is not associated with my employer at all.

Sometimes, I try to disassociate myself from my own opinions.






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