Maynard’s Cafe's flavor slingers craft a surf 'n' turf menu brimming with oceanic delights and land-locked meats. Dining companions can warm up for competitive chew-offs with the Maynard’s Combo, an amalgam of finger foods that include crab balls, jalapeño poppers, chicken tenders, and steamed shrimp among other handheld poppables. Then order up a heftier entree, such as the chicken fettuccini, crab legs and drawn butter, or fried oysters. The new york strip steak cohabitates with crab cakes and brings two sides to the table. Guests can savor their meals while oogling karaoke performers crooning after 9 p.m. Wednesday–Sunday or watch cards go flying during rounds of Texas Hold 'em or high-stakes Go Fish on Thursdays.
Owner Elmer Esh fills bellies with Amish homestyle meals at Esh's Barbeque Pit, and doles out portions of fresh ribs and roasts at Esh's Meat. Sandwiches and barbecue chicken basted in homemade sauce sate urgent appetites, and sausages hand-stuffed onsite and steak cuts from the meat shop build a base for future meals or edible sculptures of John Adams. With a focus on high quality meat, Elmer sources his ribs and beef from livestock raised by Amish farmers at Ontario's Pennfield Farms.
In the black-and-red dining room, underneath hand-chalked blackboards that proclaim daily specials in bold print, fresh-baked pies travel from oven to table loaded with toppings. The customized pizzas come in two shapes, the traditional round 18-inch pies and the ‘slyce’ pizzas, which, like the holes in many Venetian canal walls, are canoe shaped. The outdoor patio lines each side of Home Slyce’s corner building, where wings, sandwiches, and calzones wash down easily with craft brews, wines, and domestic drafts.
After nearly 40 years of combined experience in the restaurant industry, Dave and Pam Keohane knew how to please their patrons when they realized their dreams of restaurant ownership and opened Greenhouse Grill in 1990. Inside, cozy booths and warmly toned walls encourage diners to linger over dessert and chat over draft beers and expertly mixed margaritas. All-American starters such as bacon cheese fries and crab dip stop stomach rumbles long enough for guests to peruse the menu, which mingles hand-cut steaks, seafood specialties, and sandwiches accompanied by bottomless fries. The chefs also toss pasta specialties with meats and seafood such as crab and shrimp, and several homestyle specialties ensure whole families or incomplete sets of green army men have plenty of options to choose from.
To get a sense of The Greene Turtle's commitment to the neighborhood, one need only sit at the bar and look up. Dozens of mugs hang above the counter, emblazoned with the pub's logo and a unique number—each one belongs to a recurring patron. The Mug Club awards its members with draft-beer discounts and other specials, but more importantly, it allows loyal patrons to feel as though they own small slices of the venue without tattooing their names on the bartender's arm. This sense of shared familiarity is what fuels the entire franchise, which refrains from calling its locations "restaurants" in favor of friendlier terms: gathering places, communities, havens.
Many of the locations contribute more than mugs to their districts. Staff members who participate in the annual Tips for Tots program donate the entirety of one day's tips to a nearby Toys for Tots initiative, and Tuesday Funds for Friends events benefit local organizations. These efforts have been chronicled by press sources such as Food and Drink magazine, with features that liken The Greene Turtles' philanthropic generosity to the generous portions of comfort food that leave the kitchens.
From cheeseburger sliders and flatbread pizzas to handmade lump-crab cakes, the offerings on the menu embrace barroom traditions along with ingenuity. The steak and chicken entrees arrive with classic sides of green beans and yukon gold mashed potatoes, whereas the eastern shore mac ‘n’ cheese updates a comfort staple with chopped bacon, lump crab, scallions, and Old Bay seasoning. Diners can enjoy their meals by the glow of private flat-screen TVs—there's one in every booth—or beneath one of many larger televisions broadcasting sports games throughout the venue.
The Reserve's eclectic menu arrays out chic entrees, sandwiches, and salads that promenade across red carpet tongues on the arms of microbrews, craft beers, and wines. Patrons can observe the limits of their friends' selflessness as they politely race to grab shared bites such as crab sliders, two lump crustacean cakes in a dijon old bay aioli ($8). The knowledgeable staff can suggest a selection from a robust medley of wines to pair with entrees, such as the spicy basil veggie stir-fry, served over cilantro lime rice in a thai peanut sauce as spicy as a commencement speech given by Hugh Hefner ($13). Bites of the Angus-sourced barbecue beef burgers ($12), along with other bread-hugged sandwiches, test cheeks' elasticity or slide down throat waterslides with gulps of one of The Reserve's 16 beers on tap.