Ocean City Today
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Ocean City’s Fall Restaurant Week to kick off Sunday

By Kara Hallissey | Nov 02, 2017
Photo by: Kara Hallissey Andrijana Vicentic creates one of Touch of Italy’s mouthwatering pizzas on Tuesday afternoon, which will be an option on the 66th Street establishment’s Restaurant Week menu.

(Nov. 3, 2017) Residents and visitors have at least 17 local establishments to check out during Ocean City’s Fall Restaurant Week, which begins Sunday, Nov. 5 and continues through Nov. 19, offering discounts on already low off-season prices.

“Take advantage because restaurants are offering great deals and creative menus,” said Susan Jones, executive director of the Ocean City Hotel-Motel-Restaurant Association, which organizes the annual event. “We have this event during a less busier time of year to spark the local economy for restaurants, servers and bartenders.”

The two-week restaurant specials are designed to draw diners through the doors when business is slower and gives chefs an opportunity to create a unique menu or try out new ideas. Participating restaurants range from from pubs, breakfast and lunch eateries to fine dining.

Touch of Italy on 66th Street has three courses for $22, excluding Friday and Saturday, during Restaurant Week.

“All Restaurant Week menu items are great and put together by our culinary director, Robbie Jester,” said manager Gene Rutzler. “I think customers will really like the menu this year.”

Diners can start off with pasta and beans or choose Touch of Italy’s Caesar or Mista salads before moving onto the house specialty, rigatoni alla burrata, which consists of crushed San Marzano tomatoes, fresh basil, salt and pepper blended with homemade burrata topped with pecorino romano, or try the pollo al taleggio, a chicken cutlet breaded with handmade breadcrumbs, pan-seared in a white wine Italian herb sauce then topped with melted taleggio cheese and prosciutto served over a bed of sautéed spinach.

Additional entrée choices include eggplant parmigiana, linguine with mussels and red sauce or choose a wood-fired oven pizza from the menu.

“Restaurant Week gives customers the ability to go out and try new places and different menu items,” Rutzler.

Finish out the meal with an Italian Oreo, which consists of two chocolate cream cheese cookies sandwiched with a cannoli filling and rolled in chocolate chips.

Touch of Italy also has a number of offseason specials taking place during Restaurant Week including wine and a cheese board on Mondays, baked ziti and a salad on Tuesdays, chicken parmesan on Wednesdays, build-your-own bucatini on Thursdays and pizza on Sundays.

The Victorian Room in the Dunes Manor Hotel on 28th Street is offering three courses for $30 during Restaurant Week.

“Our chef is taking the freshest ingredients in the autumn season and bringing them to life in different ways,” said Joanne Cunningham, director of sales and marketing for the Dunes Manor Hotel. “The taste, quality and presentation is very special too.”

Starters include a harvest arugula salad topped with goat cheese, roasted pumpkin seeds and an apple cider vinaigrette or a spiced butternut squash soup.

The main course options are a pan-seared red snapper served with roasted bliss potatoes and glazed beets, osso bucco, which is a braised beef shank with cheese polenta fries and bacon brussels, or fried gooseberry barbecue ribs, served with New England-style cole slaw and jalapeno cheddar cornbread.

Finish off the experience with a chocolate pecan pie or trio crème brulee for dessert.

“We put a spin on the classic crème brulee by having three different types and it is lick-the-plate good,” Cunningham said. “Restaurant Week is a great value and the Victorian Room offers oceanfront dining. Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights starting at 7 p.m. Shirley Toms plays the piano.”

Uptown at Bourbon Street on the Beach on 116th Street, diners can choose three courses for $30 or four courses for $35 including appetizers, salads, soups, entrées and desserts.

“It’s a chance to try a different variety of things all at one time and not pay full price,” said owner Barry Reichart. “Almost all of the items are on the regular menu so it’s a good indication of what you can get when you come by not during Restaurant Week.”

Look forward to starters cooked from scratch including chargrilled oysters, bacon wrapped scallops, tomato and mozzarella with balsamic reduction, oysters on the half shell, mozzarella sticks, crab stuffed mushrooms and buffalo chicken dip.

House and Caesar salads, gumbo, Maryland crab soup, red beans and rice and cream of crab soup are also options.

Entrées include the Bourbon Street steak, lobster ravioli with crab Alfredo, jambalaya, Chesapeake chicken with lump crab, a broiled seafood sampler, shrimp and crawfish etouffée, an almond crusted chicken with bing cherry sauce and a grilled or blackened tuna steak with spicy plum sauce.

“The Bourbon Street steak is always a favorite, which is a blackened Delmonico steak topped with a bourbon, mushroom demi-glaze,” Reichart said. “The chargrilled oysters are our number one seller, the lobster ravioli with crab Alfredo is very good and the bread pudding with homemade ice cream is always a favorite.”

For dessert, bread pudding with homemade ice cream, peanut butter pie, key lime pie and bananas foster are all options.

“Being later in the year and not as many places open or participating, I would call and make reservations,” Reichart said. “I think all the restaurants are going to be crazy busy.”

Jones brought the idea for Restaurant Week back from a travel summit on the Western Shore in 2007, she said.

“It is a good excuse to eat out and not have to cook,” Jones said.

Alcohol, tax and gratuity are not included in Restaurant Week’s special menu prices. Participating restaurants will still offer their regular, full-price menus during the promotion.

In addition, diners are encouraged to send in two receipts from participating Restaurant Week establishments to be in the running for three gift cards. On Nov. 22, Restaurant Week organizers will choose three winners who will receive a $100 or $50 gift card from area eateries.

Send a picture of the receipts to inquire@ocvisitor.com or 410-726-0334. Participants can also mail the receipts by the Nov. 20 deadline to 5700 Coastal Highway, Suite 302, Ocean City Maryland, 21842.

For participating restaurants’ menus and prices, visit www.oceancityrestaurantweek.com.

 

Participating Restaurants:

 

BJ’s on the Water, 75th Street

Bourbon Street on the Beach, 116th Street

Captain’s Table, 15th Street, inside Marriott Courtyard

Crab Bag, 130th Street

Happy Jack Pancake House, 25th Street

Horizon’s Oceanfront Restaurant, 101st Street, inside Clarion

Resort Hotel

Jules Restaurant, 118th Street

Laytons, 92nd Street

Lighthouse Sound Restaurant, St. Martin’s Neck Rd., Bishopville

Longboard Café, 67th Street

Ocean City Brewing Company, 55th Street

Rare & Rye, 32nd Street

Sello’s Italian Oven and Bar, Golf Course Rd., West Ocean City

Shark on the Harbor, Sunset Ave., West Ocean City

The Shrimp Boat, Stephen Decatur Highway, West Ocean City

Touch of Italy, 66th Street

Victorian Room, 28th Street, inside Dunes Manor Hotel

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