Friday, November 19, 2010

Eating on the Inter Coastal Waterway!

Cafeteria at St. Mary's College, MD
We love to eat! And I love to cook. So mostly we eat aboard but once in a while it's a marvelous thing to dine out. Looking back on our trip up and down the ICW and up to Herrington Harbor North, some of our best times were at a variety of restaurants. So I'm giving you a sample here, starting at our northern most port and ending in Florida.
Coinjock Marina at mile 50 on the ICW 
In Deale, MD we'd recommend the Petey's Roadhouse - good food, plentiful and reasonably priced for the quality. Further south enjoyed a visit to St. Mary's City, MD and had lunch at St. Mary's Cafeteria - all you can eat buffet at lunch - a large variety of choices and all delicious!
O'Neal's Snack Bar in Bel Haven, VT
Out front of the Beaufort Grocery Restaurant in Beaufort, NC
Once in the ICW itself we often stop at the Coinjock Marina. It's  $.25 a foot more expensive than the Midway Marina across the channel but their prime rib is a treat. I order the 16 oz version (imagine ordering the 32 oz?), eat my fill at dinner and then serve the leftovers to the two of us the next evening!
We have always anchored in Bel Haven and love walking around this sleepy little town. There used to be a wonderful buffet at the River Forest Marina Inn but those days are gone and frankly the Marina looks like it's been neglected.
So the choices are few but for a casual inexpensive meal you can go to O'Neal's Snack Bar and feel like you're back in the 50's. By the way, the supermarket is a long ways from the center of town, but if you dinghy down to the right side of the bridge you'll see a channel built for work boats. Tie up at the dock there and it's only about 5 blocks to the supermarket. On the way back last time two cars stopped to offer us a ride! Friendly town.
And now for the first of the gourmet recommendations and it is great! The Beaufort Grocery Restaurant is open for lunch and dinner, and brunch on the weekends - and take out desserts. You can sit outside in the mice weather , at the bar on in the main restaurant. We have been there three times and always thought everything was amazing. Once we had lunch and were too full for dessert, so we came back that night and pigged out at the bar. Dessert for dinner is sometimes just the thing, especially when the portions are this big.
Our next stop is Southport, NC and we were delighted at our friends on Sea Angel's advice, taken from Skipper Bob's. The Provisioning Co Restaurant has four slips in front that are FREE. Only one other boat was there and we had no problem docking in the sturdy slip.  As soon as we tied up a waitress came up to let us know the kitchen was closing soon and if we wanted to eat we should order soon. Oh yes, we do!
The seafood chowder was to die for - and I make really good chowder. The steamed shrimp were good but not in the same category. Still there were a lot of them for a reasonable price along with crab cakes, good fries and cole slaw. We had enough left over to take back to the boat. And the bar was so friendly we sat around and talked with the staff and a fellow who had come down to meet us after seeing us dock - Ray Slaughter.
The next day I made shrimp scampi pizza with lots of garlic, the shrimp, feta cheese and fresh basil and rosemary. Yummy.
More on some fabulous restaurants in Charleston and further south in my next entry.
The Provisioning Co. Restaurant in Southport, NC
Kicking back with friends at the Provisioning Company in Southport NC

We're sorry we missed the big Halloween Party the night before!

Leftover Shrimp made a great pizza!

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