Ahhh, the music of wavelets lapping a bulkhead, the reflection of city lights on a still river, the sound of crickets in the night. Could there be anything better than dining en plein air? Herein, alfresco for foodies.
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Restaurants don’t get more nautical than Gilligan’s, where the kitchen is housed in an old shrimp boat beached along the Lewes-Rehoboth Canal and the torch-lit deck hovers over the roof of the boat’s galley. Try the crab cakes, the Key lime martinis and the homemade desserts. 134 W. Market St., Lewes, 644-7230
Great outdoor dining is just steps away at the casual Sassafras Grill. You’ll find eight tables and a few wooden benches underneath an awning on docks in the Sassafras River. Try the crab pizza, crab pretzels or crab cakes. 100 George St., Georgetown, Md., (410) 275-1603
The giant deck and tiki bar provide awesome viewing of vacation-crazed jetboat pilots ripping Little Assawoman Bay on craft rented at the marina next door. A waterfall and torches create a Jimmy Buffettesque hangout where frozen drinks like the signature Harpoon Hannah go great with burgers, sandwiches and seafood appetizers. Del. 54, Fenwick Island, 539-3095
Harry’s Savoy Grill
Redone in May, the patio at Harry’s Savoy is even more spectacular than before. With a new mesh awning that lets in the light and breeze while filtering out hot rays of sunlight, the brick patio is awash in fresh geraniums, begonias and hibiscus. A center fountain is lit with white lights in the evening. Comfortable seating at faux brick bistro tables offers space for about 45 people. The patio can and does accommodate families, but it’s one of the most romantic settings for a date. 2020 Naamans Road, Wilmington, 475-3000
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