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Aug 22, 2007 08:46 AM

Rehoboth Beach, DE Fine Dining

I need a suggestion for a special birthday dinner in or near Rehoboth Beach. We have been summering here for five years and have eaten at most of the restaurants, but want someplace we have eaten at before: Justin Thyme, La La Land, Chez La Mer, 59 Lake. Any comments or suggestions?

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  1. No question for me: Nage on Route 1 or Cafe Azafran in Lewes

    1 Reply
    1. re: jlwnc

      I wasn't impressed with LaLa Land. It wasn't bad, just a bit forgettable (my husband's steak, though, was awful....all he could taste was the "char"). I loved Nage, and recently went to the relocated "Cultured Pearl" and thought the atmosphere was excellent and the food yummy.

    2. I highly recommend either Nage or Cultured Pearl depending on your mood...they are both excellent!

      1. Espuma - The chef's tasting menu is definitely worth it.

        THe Cultured pearl was also very nice

        2 Replies
        1. re: bd9

          Chez La Mer and Eden are good choices if you have not eaten there before (could not tell from your post if you had or had not eaten at these).

          I've never been to Espuma, but I'm itching to try it based on the overall good reviews.

          1. re: Pool Boy

            Went to Espuma and Chez La Mer last weekend. One thing of IMPORTANCE to note is that Espuma Chef & Owner Jay Caputo has been confirmed to have purchased Chez La Mer as of June 15th 2007.

            Espuma rocked and Chez La Mer was hit or miss. Some great stuff at Chez La Mer (escargots, pate, bouilliabaise) and some duds (sweetbreads & chicken). 1/2 price wine on Mondays still is offered and I can't coment on current desserts as we passed. But the chairs have all been upgraded and are much more comfortable now.

            Espuma was a wonderful experience and all around a better performer than Chez La Mer.

            Some more details on Espuma--

            OK, here is what the my wife and I had for dinner at Espuma --

            I had Prawns with beans lemon olives and broth of the gods -- this was simple ane brilliant at the same time. Perfectly executed.

            My wife had 'Bacon and Egg salad'. A poached egg which was then barely dipped in bread crumbs and super flash fried on top of some really excellent bacon and a salad to go with it all....Super.

            My main course was a Duck Confit with brown butter gnocchi and oyster mushrooms with fig spread on top -- well executed and the duck was the highlight of this dish. Good stuff.

            My wife opted for the Chicken (with crispy skin) with peppers, almond ravioli and lobster and best mystery sauce ever -- Damn fine.

            Wine was 2003 Fiddlehead Cellars Pinot Noir 728 fiddlestix -- awesome cinnamon and brown butter and ripe cherries and brown spice -- a very good wine. Maybe 90 points.

            Dessert was an Ice Cream Sandwich with ginger orange ice cream and cinnamon meruinge cookies and dried cherries.

            All in all a great meal. It was made better by the fact that we could linger a bit and the space was nice. Comfortably appointed, there is a wall and curtains alternating to set off the dining room from the bar to leave you feeling a bit of the vibe of the bar area without it becoming too noisy. Service was excellent with the staff being very familiar with the whole menu and specials as well as the wine list -- always a plus. The fact that it was ridiculously walkable from the place we were staying was another plus.

            I'd definitely go again -- or wherever the chef decides to be now that he's bought Chez La Mer.


        2. I've been to Rehoboth several times in the last few years, and my top recommendations are Confucius and The Cultured Pearl.

          Confucius is some of the better Chinese food I've had.

          Cultured Pearl's new space is just phenomenal, and the sushi is still top rate (see for a pic from yesterday). Alas, I found the service a little cranky, and had one of the more bizarre conversations I've ever had with a waitress ("why, if the cultured combo doesn't come with Miso soup, does it say that it comes with miso soup right here in the menu."). But the sushi was top quality, and I rather enjoyed our appetizers as well.

          1. One of my favorites is CLOUD 9 on Rehoboth Ave. Blue Moon is a staple in Rehoboth and never disappoints. Haven't tried Nage, but hear it's amazing, just not in-town walkable.