Taste of the County
Here are a few restaurants that offer real down-home cookin’. Fried oysters, anyone?
(page 2 of 2)
Four years ago, the restaurant took over Fleischer’s Bakery. The bakery’s German owner, Adell Fleischer, now in her 90s, still decorates the cakes. The confections are in high demand. All of the restaurant’s confections, in fact, are in great demand around the holidays, when locals flock to it for coconut cake. If you want a coconut cake during Christmas, place your order two weeks in advance.
The restaurant is open 364 days a year, closing only on Christmas Day. Gray says they have weathered the recession by keeping the prices reasonable. On a recent Saturday, a fried oyster dinner was offered for $8.99.
“You just can’t get a home-cooked dinner at these prices,” says Jim Hendberg, a regular at Kirby & Holloway. Hendberg has visited the diner every day for the past seven years.
His pal, Bob Robison, goes in daily for dinner and a bacon-and-egg breakfast. Kirby & Holloway’s good customer service from the restaurant’s 50 employees keeps him coming back. He’ll take the family diner over a chain restaurant any day. Some locals simply call it Family Restaurant because those are the dominant words on the sign.
Hall’s Family Restaurant in Wyoming specializes in home-cooked comfort food, including home-baked pies, hand-breaded seafood, meatloaf and sauerkraut chicken and dumplings. Dinner can be had for under $12.
The 150-seat restaurant attracts families, business people and seniors by sticking with the philosophy of making everything from scratch.
“If your grandmother didn’t have it in her kitchen, neither do we,” says owner Steve Hall.
Hall’s depends on its regular guests, mostly families whose kids they have seen grow up and go to college since Steve and his dad, Ray, first owned the restaurant 13 years ago. There are some regulars who eat there four or five times a week and others twice a day, Hall says.
“Families continue to go back to the restaurants that give them great service and great food,” Leishman says.
The shop had been around long before the Halls took over. Elwood Ennis returned from service overseas in World War II, then opened a variety store and soda fountain. His heirs ran it until 1970, then sold it to Stanley and Christine Anthony, who called it Anthony’s until 1988. The Anthonys sold it to Bill Ori, who changed the shop’s name to JW’s. And then Ray Hall, Steve’s father, bought it in 1997.
Located across from town hall, the 175-seat restaurant is open six days a week. It is closed on Sundays.
No discussion of Kent County restaurants is complete without mentioning the Smyrna Diner. The classic stainless-steel structure sat at 304 N. Dupont Blvd. for decades, a beacon to locals and a famous waypoint for travelers on U.S. 13.
Owner Sandy Margist may have given up the old trailer-style place in favor of a more modern restaurant at 99 S. Cory Lane, and daughter Jamie Compton may have taken over as the manager, but dishes like chicken and dumplings are still made from scratch, and the service is as friendly as ever. Best of all, it serves breakfast all day.
For more great restaurants in Kent County, visit delawaretoday.com/Delaware-Today/Delaware-Resources/Dining-Guide.