Go Fish: Restaurants That Cook Your Catch

Blog BahrsLandingFluke copyIf you are like my husband, the perfect summer day is one spent on the open water fishing. This works out just fine when we are home — we have a boat. He can fish to his heart’s content, come home, and fillet his catch and cook it up. Easy peasy and delicious.

So, what is the avid angler to do when he or she goes on vacation and wants to savor the spoils of the day? Coastal marinas are chock full of charter fishing boats that will take you out to the local hot spot and let you fish away. Each captain sets his own terms; some are strictly catch-and-release, some charters retain the keepers, and others, if you are lucky, will scale, gut, and fillet your fish, and give it back to you. Now what? We found a number of restaurants that cook your catch. If you’re fishing in other destinations, ask the charter captain who can accommodate you. They are in-the-know locals who will not only put you on the best fishing locations offshore but will also steer you to the best kitchens, often a stone’s throw from the marina.

Bahr’s Landing, in Highlands, New Jersey, is a Jersey shore landmark. Run by the same family since 1917, Bahr’s has been a destination for generations of seafood lovers, including the likes of Frank Sinatra, Joe DiMaggio, Mel Torme, and even the cast and crew of HBO’s The Sopranos (Tony once suggested to a depressed Carmella, “Come on, we’ll go down to Bahr’s and get some lobsters.”). Known for the freshest clams, oysters, lobsters, finfish, and chowders, Bahr’s also operates a full-service marina. Eager anglers can jump on any of a number of six-passenger charters or board their own 40-passenger boat for a half day of fishing.

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Catch a keeper striped bass, bluefish, fluke, sea bass, or cod, and the mates will fillet it and get it to the kitchen where the chef will prepare it to your liking. Owner Jay Cosgrove tells us that deep-fried fish-and-chips style is the most popular, served with “our famous coleslaw, fries, and cocktail sauce.” While you are waiting, he advises, “Grab a cup of our chowder and a cold beer.” With a per person price of $8.95 at their outdoor Moby’s Lobster Deck (a bit more in the restaurant), “Bahr’s is the best way to experience a day of fishing on the Jersey coast,” according to Cosgrove. I am almost tempted to test out my sea legs!Continue Reading

Stoic & Genuine Opens in Denver’s Historic Union Station: No Ocean, No Worries

Denver’s famous Union Station has gotten a much-needed renovation, and, along with stunning stores and a swank new hotel, some of the city’s best restaurateurs are setting up shop in the station, including Beth Gruitch and business partner and James Beard Award winner Jennifer Jasinski. The pair, who also operate Bistro Vendome, Euclid Hall, and Rioja, have opened Stoic & Genuine, a multi-coastal seafood and oyster house. Featuring fresh seafood that is flown in daily, as well as oysters harvested exclusively for the eatery, an amazing wine and craft beer program, an array of grower’s Champagne, and a unique granita bar, Stoic & Genuine is named for Jasinki’s husband Max (stoic) and executive chef Jorel Pierce (genuine), and they aim to deliver food and hospitality that reflects those principles.

The selection of granitas are meant to complement both seafood dishes, such as oysters, and a number of cocktails. Gruitch revealed that the concept for the granita offerings came about at Jasinki’s wedding a couple of years ago. She says, “We’ve taken it one step further, by presenting both savory and sweet options. The flavors are incredibly intense — plus, it keeps your drink cold so its perfect.” Her current favorites include the Sherry Amontillado (“Sherry and oysters are a perfect match!”) and the strawberry Champagne granita. “We simply top it with more bubbles,” she notes, “and it’s a really nice alternative to a mimosa or a Bellini.”

In a nod to Denver’s sporty, health-conscious foodies, Stoic & Genuine‘s menu is a real reflection of how Gruitch and Jasinski like to eat. Gruitch says, “I love the simplicity of it. It’s refreshing and all the flavors are there. Jen’s cooking is really light, yet there’s a ton of flavor there.”

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OpenTable Reviews Reveal Top 100 Scenic View Restaurants — with Exclusive Slideshow!

At the height of summer vacation season, we are pleased to announce the 2013 Diners’ Choice Award winners for the Top 100 Scenic View Restaurants in the United States. These awards reflect the combined opinions of more than 5 million reviews submitted by verified OpenTable diners for more than 15,000 restaurants in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

The list of winners spans 29 states and includes Canlis in Seattle, Five Sixty by Wolfgang Puck in Dallas, and Top of the Hub in Boston.  The picturesque state of California makes a strong showing with 22 honorees. Washington follows with seven top scenic restaurants, trailed by Maryland, Nevada, and New York, with six winners each. Oregon restaurants claim five spots on the list, and Massachusetts and North Carolina have each earned four spots apiece. Missouri, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania all boast three winners. Alaska, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Maine, Michigan, Ohio, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Texas, Virginia, and Wisconsin each have two winning restaurants. Arizona, Colorado, Minnesota, New Mexico, and Utah are also represented. Eateries specializing in American fare, including Californian and Pacific Northwest regional, proved particularly popular, as did seafood restaurants.


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Dining Poll: What’s Dad’s Favorite Cuisine When Dining Out?

Sunday is Father’s Day! Dining out for dad’s special day has always been a popular tradition in our family, possibly because my father is not the greatest griller (Ed. note: My dad readily admits this.). Also, he loves a great steak, and it’s really tough for even the best home griller to source and cook one as as well as the pros. So, we’ll be tucking into some quality meat with all the fixings at one of his favorite steakhouses this Sunday. What type of restaurant is your dad’s favorite? Weigh in on today’s dining poll!