Dining Review: Off the Hook: A New Restaurant by Steve Hagen in Bethany Beach:
Blend traditional fish house with modern upscale-casual, and this is what you get.
(page 4 of 4)
Of the three descriptors, Honest was perhaps the most impressive. Hagen ensures a transparent operation. A straight-shot view into the kitchen is there from any of the 50 dining room seats, plus five or so more at the tiled, blue bar. Sidle up and witness every cut of fish get sprinkled with salt. Every pat of butter. Every wipe of the side towel. Everything the kitchen staff says and does is on display.
“People’s knowledge of food in the last few years—I don’t know what it is—but it has changed,” Hagen says. “They’re more conscious of what they put into their bodies, so you have to give them flavors they like, you gotta’ be true, you gotta’ be honest. And it seems the more local, the better.”
In our case, the bread pudding had already disappeared in a rampage, and thoughts of local tautog and sustainable agriculture drifted back to some melted maple-bacon butter stuck to the corner of my lips. Then I thought it might be a good time for some rest back among the quiet people.