Eastern Shore, MD
A friend and I are taking a passenger ferry to either Tilghman Island or Crisfield this weekend. Can anyone recommend a good place to get high-quality seafood with interesting preparation? We don't mind paying for good preparation and fresh fish, but want to avoid one of those good-old-boy places that wants you to get drunk on cocktails so that you don't notice that your surf and turf is overcooked and flavorless. Thanks!
Its been a long time since Ive been in that part of the world, but unless things have changed a lot you may want to recalibrate a bit - look for the fresh local stuff (crabs crabs and more crabs, fried chicken, biscuits, etc), rather than "interesting" preparations and you will probably do the best. I would be interested to hear what people with more recent experience recommend to you.
re: jen kalb
It obviously has been a VERY long time since you've been to "that part of the world." Things have changed greatly since then. They now have telephones and automobiles and even them newfangled TV sets. In the meantime, Talbot County -- which incidentally has one of the higher per capita incomes in the region -- has become a haven for many good restaurants by virtue of its upscale tourist/B&B traffic. Not only has the Tilghman Island Inn received good reviews in "Food and Wine" magazine, but 208 Talbot restaurant has been given glowing reviews in the New York Times, while Bistro St. Michaels, the Inn at Perry Cabin, and Le Zinc in nearby Oxford have received wonderful national write-ups. Of course, the crab is always great in this area, but if you restrict yourself to that, you'll be engaging in uninformed snobbery and you will only cheat yourself in the end.
the tilghman island inn is a pleasant place located away from the main drag with an outdoor deck giving a nice view of the western entrance to knapps narrows. i had a very nice brunch there two weekends ago. it's not a "good ol' boy's" place; in fact, it received a very nice write-up in food and wine magazine. on some nights, they have a jazz pianist.