Sunday, April 18, 2010

Outerbanks restaurant guide: best restaurants

In the past week I've told you about my favorite specialty food stops as well as my favorite cheap eats in the Outerbanks, North Carolina. Now let's take a look at some special restaurants to try out when you want to get a little fancy, celebrate or generally step it up a notch.

Nice restaurants

The Blue Point
Location: Duck, in the Waterfront Shops
Food: modern American, seafood
Price: dinner entrees $23-$33; lunch entrees $9-$14

The Blue Point is my favorite restaurant in the Outerbanks. There, I said it!

This place has an amazing sound view as it rests literally on top of the water, and the interior decor is exactly what I would make my restaurant look like should I ever own one. The red leather booths and black-and-white checker floors give the restaurant a quaint ambiance, but the dark wood paneling and sophisticated light fixtures make the interior more upscale rather than diner-esque.

We usually go here for lunch, just because you can get many of the same, or quite similar, menu items for significantly less money, but we also discovered a Tuesday through Thursday bar menu, which offers upscale bar food for about $8-$10 per dish. When Matt and I went to The Blue Point over spring break we made a reservation and sat at the bar. We had to ask specifically for the bar menu when the bartender just handed us a regular dinner menu (we went on a Wednesday night). We ordered a crab dip that was 90 percent crab meat and therefore pretty awesome in my book. We also ordered a salad and a burger, both from the bar menu, both quite satisfying an both with some special ingredients that separated them from standard bar fare. We each ate half of each entree. It's true love over here. In the past I've had the crab cake sandwich for lunch, but we've been here so many times that I've lost track of everything we've purchased. This is a place where anything from the menu is bound to be good.

And if you're lucky, you'll get to eat your dinner as you watch an amazing sunset right before your eyes. Last time we were there we witnessed that very phenomenon.

The view outside The Blue Point, just not at sunset.

The Colington Cafe
Location: Kill Devil Hills, mile post 8.5
Food: classic American, seafood
Price: dinner entrees $16-$27

This pretty restaurant is set inside an old house, under the shade of what the website describes as "300+ year old live oaks." The trees are definitely a memorable landmark to help you find this restaurant.

The Colington Cafe is a great special-occasion restaurant, though the prices are reasonable for the quantity and quality of food served. I'm partial to the shrimp scampi, my go-to entree whenever I visit.

Roadside Bar and Grill
Location: Duck Village, appropriately on the side of the road
Food: modern Southern American
Price: comparable to The Blue Point in terms of both lunch and dinner, though Roadside has a constantly changing menu

Similar to Duck's Cottage, the independent book store/coffee shop, this Duck establishment is also a converted 1930s house. The ambiance is a little rustic and fitting for a beach town, but the cuisine is not your typical beach fare. As is the case with The Blue Point, we usually go here for lunch instead of dinner so we can eat basically the same meal for half the price. We also choose to sit outside on the patio, surrounded by shrubbery to separate us from the street, during nice weather. The best part about this restaurant is the ever-changing sign outside the restaurant highlighting the daily specials. Sometimes there is intentional humor, and sometimes the misspellings or grammatical mistakes lead to a chuckle from this English teacher. In the picture above, you can see how the restaurant highlighted the special "shrimp and rits" that day. (I know, I'm a grammar snob.) Fun place, if you're willing to spend a little more money!

Hope you enjoy your next vacation in the Outerbanks! If you have questions, leave me a comment and I'll see if I know the answer (or can find you the answer).

1 comment:

  1. You're making me want to visit the Outerbanks!

    BTW- I nominated you for a Sunshine Award! See here:

    Thanks :)
    Susan/Project Balancing Act