The Best of Delaware 2009
From crab cakes and cheesesteaks to prime rib and clam bakes, little Delaware is packed with great places to eat and terrific places to shop. Here’s the cream of the crop.
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Readers, upstate: Stanley’s Tavern (2038 Foulk Road, Wilmington, 475-1887)
Readers, downstate: Bethany Blues BBQ Pit (6 N. Pennsylvania Ave., Bethany Beach, 537-1500)
Critics, upstate: Ever heard of a bowling center that serves good food? Thanks to The Spare Rib Xpress, that’s what the revamped Bowlerama entertainment complex in New Castle has become. The Xpress’ pork baby back ribs are so tender, no knives are needed to separate meat from bone. The ribs are slow-cooked for eight to 10 hours, then slathered with barbecue, chipotle or hickory sauce and served with a side of slaw and curly fries. Of course, there are combos with chicken or a crab cake. On Mondays, get a full slab with slaw and fries for $11.99. Orders can be eaten in (the place seats 50) or carried out. The Xpress also serves other on-site businesses, including the bowling lanes, KidZone and Kegler’s Pub & Sports Bar. We hear the wings are giving the ribs a run for their money. (3031 New Castle Ave., New Castle, 655-7427)
Critics, downstate: For consistently good St. Louis-style ribs, Meoli prefers the smoky goodness of Bethany Blues BBQ Pit’s hearty ribs, mopped in the slightly spicy house barbecue sauce. “They have great barbecue sauce, and I love the homemade birch beer,” he says. (6 N. Pennsylvania Ave., Bethany Beach, 537-1500)