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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The Riverfront deck at Harry’s is one of Wilmington’s most civilized outdoor dining spots. A stellar space to view after-game fireworks at Frawley Stadium or to hear live local music, Harry’s 80-seat patio is adorned with dark green wrought iron tables and a matching green awning. Choose sun or shade. “This is the place to slurp fresh raw oysters,” says general manager Kelly O’Hanlon. The grill’s full menu is available. Lights from the Market Street bridge reflected on the surface of the Christina makes one of the city’s most beautiful nighttime spectacles. If you see Captain Lionel’s pontoon boat docked out front, climb aboard for a pre-dinner tour of the river. 101 S. Market St. Wilmington, 777-1500
Hobos Restaurant and Bar
Health-conscious Hobos includes a covered patio with hightop tables and four-seaters. There is a slightly more intimate option at Hobos’ alley, where statuettes peer out from the lush foliage and walls are decorated with works by local artists. Watch for wine tastings and live music to enjoy with your sandwich, wrap or quesadilla. 56 Baltimore Ave., Rehoboth Beach, 226-2226
The Iguana Grill
People love to walk off the beach directly to the 55-seat porch, where they park their bathing-suited butts on the bright, multi-colored chairs. Southwest-inspired dishes such as quesadillas and seafood pasta go great with a margarita. Iguana carries 50 varieties of tequila. The Milton place offers a terrific view of Wagamon’s Pond. 52 Baltimore Ave., Rehoboth Beach, 227-0948 • 122 Mulberry St., Milton, 684-4211
Iron Hill Restaurant and Brewery
The 30-seat patio at the original restaurant “gives everyone a chance to enjoy the sights and sounds of Newark,” says manager Clare Pelino. Popular entrées include lobster salad and steamed clams. At Iron Hill on the Wilmington Riverfront, a 68-seat patio and an upper deck offer great views of the Kalmar Nyckel. 147 E. Main St., Newark, 266-9000 • 710 S. Madison St., Wilmington, 472-2739
Joe’s Crab Shack
Joe may have shacks in 28 states, but no other has a view of the Christina. There’s a 100-person deck filled with picnic tables and a sandy play area for kids. Seafood “fund-do” (a concoction of shrimp, crawfish and spinach) is a top starter. 600 S. Madison St., Wilmington, 777-1803
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