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Cape May "Down N Dirty" recs

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Hello from a Philly Chowhound and former Jersey girl! My husband and I are visiting Cape May the weekend of September 9 and would love some "low-brow", but good food (elbows on the table while the crab juice drips down your arms), dining recs. We eat in Philly pretty frequently and can get really good American, Asian, Italian, etc., so we are really interested in seafood. Any great, cheap seafood restaurants either directly in Cape May, or very close, would be greatly appreciated. Eating on the docks or near the water would be wonderful!

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    1. Not the perfect fit crab- and cheap- wise, but Lobster House at top of Cape May is great. www.thelobsterhouse.com
      Admittedly, I hit the fish market more than the restaurant, only b/c nothing beats grilling on your own deck.

      1. The Lobster House it is. Here's our "secret" way of doing things.....

        Don't eat IN the restaurant..... go out back to the deck, grab yourselves a nice table outside. Get a copy of the menus from the Takeout (located in the front of the store inside the seafood market) and the Raw Bar (located in back) and maybe grab a drink while you decide what to have.

        We generally order some stuff from the raw bar first (also, they serve pitchers of iced tea) and then relax for a while before sending someone up front to order the "hot" portion of the meal.

        For a good start, try some peel-n-eat shrimp or oysters on the half shell. Lobster, crabs, clams, etc and good chowder also availabe from the raw bar.
        For the main course, a nice fried (yeah, so, its fried.. live a little) entree such as the wonderful fried scallops, make a great meal.

        1. Thanks so much for the recommendation. I have been to the Lobster House and love it! I will definitely go back when we are there. Any other hidden gems?

          1. Well you asked for it-down and dirty. Mayer's Tavern fits the bill. Scallops, either sauted or fried-tender, melt in your mouth good. It is dirty--a fisherman's bar. Lots of local color. Pat's Place on the road to Stone Harbor about 1/2 mile before the bridge and just after the Nature Center - looks like and old drive in ice cream place on right hand side of the road. Good Seafood bisques, she-crab, lobster. Also supposed to have the best cheese steak-neverhad one but he piles on the meat. He is an interesting character, former WWII vet, must be near 90 and still going strong. PLace fits the dirty description. Of course there is always the C-view, not as down and dirty but good wings. Remember you asked for down and dirty.

            1. I like to go to the C-View Inn for their wings, which are only 25 cents on Wednesdays.
              An alternative to the Lobster House, which I only go to to buy from the fish market anymore, is 2-Mile Landing between CM and WW for crabs and lobster. If you do go to the Lobster House, get their fried fish sandwich. Then go to the fish market and take home a pound of their excellent lobster salad ($13.50 vs. 7.50 for a half pound), lobster bisque, a piece of their smoked salmon or bluefish, and a key lime pie. Then get some jersey tomatoes and corn on your way home and you'll have quite a feast.
              A much cheaper and no-frills seafood place is Fish 'n Fancy on Bayshore Road in the Villas. Excellent fried or broiled platters to go or to eat-in under a tent at picnic tables. BYO. Just across the road from there is a decent Texas barbeque joint with good chopped or sliced beef brisket sandwiches, chicken and homemade desserts. Also BYO.

              1. YES! Mayers sounds PERFECT! So does Pat's Place! Definitely down & dirty. I am so excited to report back about the recs. Thank you all so much. If you think of anything else, feel free to post!