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Guide to Delaware beaches for summer 2021: What’s new and outdoor dining

What’s new this summer

Ava’s Pizzeria & Wine Bar: Set to open this spring, it’s a spinoff of the two Ava’s restaurants in Maryland (St. Michaels and Cambridge), this one at the site of the old Jake’s Seafood. Fare ranges from hearty pizzas (one called, unabashedly, Meat Meat Meat) to Damian’s Wasabi Oysters. 29 N. 1st St., Rehoboth Beach. avaspizzeria.com

Duck Donuts in Rehoboth Beach opened in December. The national chain allows customers to choose their own toppings.
Duck Donuts in Rehoboth Beach opened in December. The national chain allows customers to choose their own toppings. (Duck Donuts)

Duck Donuts: Opened last December, this sweet shop — part of a national chain — sells fresh-made doughnuts where customers choose their own coatings, toppings and drizzles. Cheesecake is a favorite; also maple bacon. 33 Wilmington Ave., Rehoboth Beach. 302-727-5315. duckdonuts.com

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Fenwick Shores: One block from the beach, this Hilton hotel opened last October and features a pool, fitness center, restaurant and waterfall fountain in the lounge. Rooms have balconies, full-size refrigerator, microwave and dishwasher. 1501 Coastal Highway, Fenwick Island. 302-539-8200. hilton.com/en/hotels/sbyfsup-fenwick-shores

Crispy skin salmon with pomegranate, kale and pistachio slaw at Square One Grill in downtown Rehoboth.
Crispy skin salmon with pomegranate, kale and pistachio slaw at Square One Grill in downtown Rehoboth. (Square One Grill)

Square One Grill: The eclectic menu features such novel dishes as lobster skins, crab enchiladas and “happy cauliflower” — plus 30 flavors of martinis. 10 N. 1st St., Rehoboth Beach. 302-226-6368. squareonegrill.com

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The Pond Bar and Grill: After 40 years in downtown Rehoboth, the live-music beach bar has moved to Route 1 (in the old TGI Fridays venue). The signature fish tacos, burgers and craft beers followed suit. 19266 Coastal Highway, Unit 1, Rehoboth Beach. 302-227-2234. thepondrehoboth.com

After 40 years in downtown Rehoboth, The Pond Bar and Grill, a live-music beach bar, has moved to Route 1.
After 40 years in downtown Rehoboth, The Pond Bar and Grill, a live-music beach bar, has moved to Route 1. (The Pond Bar and Grill)

8 outdoor dining locations at Delaware beaches

Thompson Island Brewing Co.: No vacation is complete without a craft brewery and wood-fired grill. Fortunately, Thompson Island Brewing Co., named after an island in Rehoboth Bay, just opened in Rehoboth next to sister restaurant Bluecoast Seafood Grill and Raw Bar. 30133 Veterans Way, Rehoboth Beach. 302-226-4677. thompsonislandbrewing.com

The Cultured Pearl: The Japanese fusion eatery has been voted “Best of Delaware” 27 years in a row, according to its website. The place also hosts a unique rooftop deck — it seats about 70 people at 50% capacity — with several small koi ponds and sweeping views of Rehoboth shops. 301 Rehoboth Ave., Rehoboth Beach. 302-227-8493. culturedpearl.us

Victoria’s Restaurant: Rehoboth’s Boardwalk Plaza hotel offers guests a Victorian-themed experience, and its hotel restaurant, Victoria’s, offers up marvelous people watching and ocean views. On the menu, look for classic entrees like crab melts and duck a l’orange. 2 Olive Ave. & the Boardwalk, Rehoboth Beach. 302-227-0615. boardwalkplaza.com/dining

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The patio of Heirloom, Delaware restaurant
The patio of Heirloom, Delaware restaurant (Handout)

Heirloom: The Lewes white house with red shutters, a draw for Delaware foodies, features a charming patio where guests can sip house cocktails like the grapefruit margarita and indulge in all that chef Matt Kern, a fishing and foraging fanatic, has to offer. 212 Savannah Road, Lewes. 302-313-4065. heirloomdelaware.com

Grotto Pizza has come a long way since its beach beginnings in 1960.
Grotto Pizza has come a long way since its beach beginnings in 1960. (Brian Krista / Baltimore Sun Media Group)

Grotto Pizza: Beach pizza just hits different. The Grotto has been a beachfront favorite for decades — it opened in 1960. For kid-friendly food that’ll please grandparents, too, check out outdoor seating at one of the locations along the boardwalk in Rehoboth. 15 N. Boardwalk at Baltimore Avenue and 18 other locations. 302-227-4588. grottopizza.com

Striper Bites: The Lewes restaurant says its vibe is Northeast-meets-Key-West. Feast on a menu of sandwiches, sushi rolls and more on the outdoor patio. 107 Savannah Road, Lewes. 302-645-4657. striperbites.com

Grain on the Rocks: Located at the Lewes Ferry Terminal by Cape Henlopen State Park, Grain on the Rocks offers free parking and bike racks. Or come by boat and dock for free. 43 Cape Henlopen Drive, Lewes. 302-291-3900. meetatgrain.com

The outdoor dining setup at Woody's.
The outdoor dining setup at Woody's. (Handout)

Woody’s Dewey Beach: Woody’s professes to have the best crab cake at the beach; come judge for yourself. Management recently added an uncovered deck to accommodate guests outside. 1904 Coastal Highway, Dewey Beach. 302-260-9945. deweybeachbar.com

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