Within the cozy, plush confines of a 19th-century brownstone mansion, Alfred's Victorian crafts specialty Northern Italian dishes alongside hand-cut pastas. Appetizers rouse tongue-napping taste buds with dishes such as mussels Livorno, baked in a savory tomato garlic sauce ($8), and the three-cheese-topped french onion soup ($6). Pasta patrons can give a toothy salute to the Al Ragu bolognese, which smothers hand-cut tagliatelle in a thick tuscan meat sauce and an even thicker accent ($15), while anti-carnivorous cravings can be sated by bites of portobello Ariana, a savory amalgamation of fresh spinach, melted provolone, and toasted almonds ($17). Pescatarians can launch a table-mounted trident into Alfred's many seafood delights, including cioppino with clams, scallops, shrimp, and mussels ($27).
The Chesapeake Inn is a place for everyone. The Dining Room is great for a nice dinner with family, friends or that special person in your life. The Deck is that fun place with live entertainment, frozen drinks and watching the boats come and go. The Ballroom is great for weddings or special events. 410-885-2040 tel
The Havre de Grace Seafood Festival has been showcasing seafood, locally made products, and the scenic seaside at Havre de Grace for 30 years. Festival-goers can peruse the extensive selection of oceanic eats and sample East Coast classics such as crab cakes and clam chowder, ideal for quelling hunger as well as ongoing West Coast feuds. The festival hosts nearly a hundred local arts and crafts and commercial vendors, who will be selling a bevy of precious objects, such as jewelry, clothing, pottery, and sculpture. Let the crisp bay air ruffle your tresses while you check out the festival's live music, which encourages the twisting of torsos and the coordinated shuffling of feet or flopping of mer-tails.
In Vallé Cucina’s kitchen, chefs form fresh jumbo lump crabmeat into thick patties, pan-sear them to a golden-brown hue, and drizzle their crispy crusts with beurre blanc. The eatery’s crab cakes have been hailed by Delaware Today as the city’s best for several years running. Vallé Cucina’s classic Italian entrees are held to the same high standard: chefs hand-roll gnocchi and drizzle them with slow-simmered tomato sauce, and accent dry-aged steaks with elegant flourishes such as peppercorn brandy cream sauce and blue cheese. Servers recommend selections from Vallé Cucina’s vast wine list to enhance steaks or Trevi Fountain reproductions.
Matt Crist, the new executive chef of Union City Grille, crafts lunches and signature dinners of handmade pastas, rich short-rib chili, and steaks seasoned with a house rub. An updated list of hand-selected wines and over 70 craft beers augment dishes that include hand-turned ricotta gnocchi and gourmet burgers. Guests can enjoy fare in the comfortable dining area, or in the eatery's cozy banquet room, accented with a modern fireplace. Sunday "choose your cut" fillet specials allow guests to feast on steaks discounted by the ounce, or pretend they are directing a film starring steaks.
Oceanside Seafood's menu brims with aquatic delights that are prepared fresh daily. Kick off an eating excursion with spicy buffalo shrimp ($9.95) before diving fork-first into a Charlie tuna salad—rare ahi tuna with Asian dressing and a confidential surname ($14.95). Plates of linguini or penne host swim meets for seafaring selections such as mussels ($10.95–$14.95) or lobster tail ($24.95), which can don team suits of red, alfredo, or garlic white sauce. Challenge the swordfish ($18.95) to a duel, or dine on honey-dipped chicken ($12.95) for a fish-free feeding frenzy. Midday meal seekers can nosh on seafood beer battered and served with lime crema, such as the fish tacos ($10.95). Parched pouts can cap off bites with brought-from-home beer, wine, or melted ice free of a corking fee.