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Cape May's Top 10 Restaurants Per

Cape May's Top 10 Restaurants Per

June 9th 2024

The folks at have released their list of the 11 Best Restaurats In Cape May.  What do you think about their rankings?  

Here is what they had to say in the article:

Several years ago, Conde Nast Traveler magazine named Cape May one of the country’s top 20 dining cities, right up there with Charleston and New Orleans.

The stereotype is that Cape May is mostly high-end restaurants, and while there are an abundance of such beloved spots (Peter Shields Inn, The Washington Inn, 410 Bank St., etc.) the dining scene is more diverse than is generally acknowledged. After all, the state’s top hot dog hole-in-the-wall, Hot Dog Tommy’s, is located here! You’ll also find taquerias, pizzerias, sushi spots, Greek restaurants, and more.

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On this list, you’ll find the Shore’s best crab cake, its best brunch and its strangest dish. That’s right. Even in sleepy, staid Cape May, surprises abound.

11. Murasaki

Cape May's 11 greatest restaurants

Restaurant music should never be loud, but I almost asked the manager to turn up Van Morrison softly crooning “Into the Mystic” as I waited for my order at Murasaki. A family-run restaurant since 2010, Murasaki, in Cape May Court House, offers a wealth of Japanese and Thai dishes. from sushi, sashimi and kushiyaki (seafood skewers) to hibachi, curry and noodles. Shumai — steamed Japanese seafood dumplings — turned out to be tasty little morsels, and the dragon roll, with eel, pays homage to that little-appreciated slithery, slimy fish. Can’t make up your mind? Try the sashimi platter; mine contained tuna, yellowtail, striped bass and octopus (for me, sashimi > sushi any day of the week.)

Try: the flower roll ($14), a tuna-topped California roll with wasabi tobiko (flying fish roe). I’m not sure I’ll have a better sushi roll anytime this year.

10. Panico’s Bistro

Christmas in Cape May's Kick Off Weekend Is Here

For some of the best food in the Cape May area, go to church. That’s where you’ll find Panico’s in West Cape May, housed in a restored church on Broadway, across from the Westside Market. A sister restaurant, Panico’s Secondo, is in Cape May. The menu at Panico’s Bistro is essentially Italian with Mediterranean influences. Not-so-ordinary apps include Italian garden soup (house-made meatball, spinach, pasta); clams lemoncello; and chivalde (pinwheel sausage stuffed with cheese and parsley, fresh mozzarella, house-roasted peppers). Inventive entrees include sweet corn and crab ravioli, and garganelle and pinot grigio (shrimp, scallop, sun-dried tomatoes, arugula, garlic, goat cheese, wine sauce). The pork shank osso buco is terrifically tender, and the Sunday dinner featured meatballs, sausage, roasted pork, gravy, rigatoni, topped with a great glob of ricotta. Both pizzas sampled — the lardo and pomodoro — were first-rate. The best pizza in the Cape May area? Panico’s Bistro.

Try: the spicy seafood ($37), with scallops, shrimp, salmon, clams, mussels, crabmeat, marinara, and linguine. A boatload of fish and shellfish in a tart tomato sauce.

9. Beach Plum Farm

Beach Plum Farm in Cape May, New Jersey, Offers Farm-to-table Gourmet  Experiences

There’s no more beautiful breakfast or lunch spot in Cape May County than Beach Plum Farm, in West Cape May. Curtis Bashaw and Will Riccio started the farm in 2008; since then the farm has produced 100-plus kinds of fruits and vegetables as well as chickens, eggs and Berkshire hogs. The farm provides meats and produce to such Cape May restaurants as The Ebbitt Room, Blue Pig Tavern and Louisa’s Cafe. The grounds are gorgeous; place an order inside at the kitchen, and it will be brought to your picnic table. The menu is not expansive; current items include carrot and ginger soup, egg salad bagel and a baked frittata.

Try: my favorite dish here is the pork chili with cornbread ($15). This would have placed in the top ten of our N.J.’s best chili list if I had tried it during that mission. It’s not on the current menu; maybe they’ll bring it back? Please?

8. The Mad Batter

mad-batter-porch – High Tide

Is there a better brunch anywhere along the Jersey Shore than the one at the Mad Batter? I think not. The Mad Batter is housed on the ground floor of the Carroll Villa Hotel; brunch is included in the room rate. You can eat in the skylit dining room, a sunny garden terrace room, or on the front porch. The pancakes are a must; there are buttermilk pancakes, Uncle Harry’s oatmeal pancakes, and gluten free ‘cakes. plus house-made corned beef hash, omelets, Benedicts and more (breakfast is served until 3 p.m.). Cheeseburgers, cheesesteaks, pizza, and crab cakes are among the lunch offerings, and there are many vegan dishes and sandwiches. The 1882 building houses a bar that is a cozy locals hangout with handmade glass mosaic walls. In 2001, the restaurant purchased what was then the most expensive liquor license in New Jersey — $800,000. I spent the last day of my semi-epic Jersey Shore walk there in 2020. No beer ever tasted so good (for the record, I was waiting for a ride home).

Try: buttermilk pancakes with blueberries ($11) and a fresh-squeezed orange juice.

7. Good Earth Organic Eatery

GOOD EARTH ORGANIC EATERY - Updated May 2024 - 141 Photos & 144 Reviews -  600 Park Blvd, West Cape May, New Jersey - Juice Bars & Smoothies -  Restaurant Reviews - Phone Number - Menu - Yelp

Vegetarians and vegans, I didn’t ignore you. Contrano Rosettani and Hilary Keever opened Good Earth Organic Eatery, in West Cape May, about 10 years ago. Their all-organic restaurant sources from local farmers and fishermen. Start things off with the Mediterranean plate (hummus, veggies, tomato garlic bruschetta, mixed olives) or the beet and pear salad, then proceed to the yellow Thai coconut curry or the cioppino, both highly recommended. Dessert: the strawberry crumble (I wrote “strawberry rumble’ in my notebook; ignore that). Note: it’s cash only. Two doors down is Chez Michel, one of my top three bakeries at the Jersey Shore.

Try: the vegan crab cake sandwich ($134. For some, “vegan” and “crab cake” don’t belong in the same sentence. Try the one here; you’ll quickly change your mind. It’s made with chickpeas, heart of palm, spinach, arugula and homemade pickled onion. The homemade ranch dressing adds pep and pizazz.

6. Exit Zero Filling Station

Exit Zero Filling Station — Exit Zero

Exit Zero, in West Cape May, is home to the Shore’s most outlandish dish. That would be The Kraken, a pitch-black concoction with shrimp and roasted chicken in a black squid ink sauce with cayenne, red curry, jalapenos, pineapple and a shot of Kraken rum. It looks like something you’d repair potholes with, but it’s freakishly tasty. I also loved the Thai lobster, a scintillating send-up of traditional tom yum soup and curry. The curries on the menu are inspired by the owner’s homeland of Scotland, where “the natives eat curry like Americans eat pizza,” according to the website. The hot chik sandwich, buttermilk and sriracha-marinated fried chicken with pepper jack cheese, cajun slaw, sweet and spicy pickles and sriracha aioli on a brioche bun, made our most recent N.J.’s best fried chicken list. There’s a dining room at Exit Zero, but you also eat inside an Airstream trailer (seats six) or a Chevy truck (seats eight).

Try: the Kraken ($26). How can something so wrong taste so right?

5. Cape May Fish Market

Cape May Fish Market — Exit Zero

I shudder whenever I see a restaurant proclaim “world famous” this or that. Seriously? That dish is known all over the world? The Cape May Fish Market, on the town’s pedestrian-only Washington Street Mall, offers “famous” crab cakes, and by golly, they live up to the name. Lush and lovely, they’re the best I’ve had anywhere Down the Shore in the past five years. They can be ordered on their own or as part of the broiled combination, which also includes flounder, three large shrimp, and scallops. You can get local Cape May oysters or oyster shooters from the raw bar, and the fish market bruschetta (homemade bruschetta, freshly diced avocados, jumbo lump crab meat, fresh herbs) is recommended. I enjoyed the lobster roll, and the kid in me smiled when I learned applesauce (good applesauce, too!) was among the sides available.

Try: the broiled combination ($39.99). All the sea’s bounty in one beautiful package.

4. The Ebbitt Room

The Ebbitt Room – Cape May Area Restaurants and Dining

The Ebbitt Room, in the Virginia Hotel, has long been regarded as one of Cape May’s top-tier restaurants. The chef is Jason Hanin, who joined the Cape Resorts family back in 2011, when he was executive chef at Chelsea Prime in Atlantic City. He worked in Blue Plate Oysterette in California, opened Dune Restaurant in Margate, then ran acclaimed steakhouse Barclay Prime in Philadelphia before taking over as executive chef of the Ebbitt Room in 2017. The dining room sits 56, the garden 32, a private dining room 18, but the prime dining spot is the porch, with seating for 26. Crudo — Italian for raw fish — is a excellent alternative to sushi, tuna tartare and the like. The fish in the crudo changes according to market availability; the night I stopped it was hamachi, a type of jack fish, accompanied by an avocado mash, serrano pepper, cara navel orange, cilantro and yuzu citrus. Highly recommended. Tip: You can order from the full dinner menu at the bar starting at 5 p.m.

Try: The lamp chops ($56) , with blueberry, toasted barley, carrot purée, farm kale, port wine jus.

3. Sapore Italiano

Sapore Italiano - Top Rated Italian Restaurant | OpenTable

I enjoyed an excellent meal at Sapore Italiano during our epic Italian restaurant showdown in 2016, and on a recent visit discovered the restaurant hadn’t slipped one bit. Housed in a stately but not stuffy Victorian, the West Cape May restaurant offers several dining rooms, plus an outside patio. I resisted ordering the amazing langostinos — eight giant grilled shrimp — as I did back in 2016, and instead went with the pollo alla piccata (chicken breast sauteed with fresh shiitake mushrooms and capers, served over linguine in a white wine lemon sauce) and the gnocchi pomodoro, bathing in a pleasing tomato sauce.

Try: linguine alla pescatore ($32.95). Linguine sauteed with mussels, clams, shrimp, calamari, and extra virgin olive oil in a white wine sauce. A classic dish done well.

2. The Magnolia Room

MAGNOLIA ROOM RESTAURANT, Cape May - Restaurant Reviews, Photos & Phone  Number - Tripadvisor

The Chalfonte, which opened in 1876, is Cape May’s oldest hotel. Inside, you’ll find the Magnolia Room and the Shore’s best fried chicken. Dorothy “Dot” Burton cooked the chicken in a black cast-iron skillet for 50 years, working side-by-side with her mother, Helen, and sister, Lucille. Forget the usual deep fryer; the fried chicken is special because of that skillet and hot, spattering, crackling oil. Dot passed away in 2015, but the chicken remains a menu mainstay. Breakfast and dinner are served from the Memorial Day weekend through September; try to grab a table on the veranda. Entrees include Miss Lucille’s crab cake, Cape May scallops and a smothered pork chop duo. Also inside the hotel is the King Edward Bar & Lounge.

Try: the fried chicken ($32), of course. Dot would be proud her tradition is being carried on.

1. Tisha’s

Tisha's Fine Dining – Virtual Restaurant Concierge

In 1988, Letitia Negro opened a 10-table Wildwood restaurant known for its home cooking. Her son, Paul, and his wife, Jennifer, opened Tisha’s Fine Dining, on the Washington Street Mall, in 1995. This is the most refined restaurant among those along the mall. Lunch selections include a pork Milanese sandwich, smoked salmon club and a lobster roll; dinner entrees include chicken Tisha (boneless chicken breast sauteed in olive oil and garlic, with artichoke hearts, sun-dried tomatoes and assorted mushrooms over basmati rice) and rigatoni boscaiola (sauteed pancetta, assorted mushrooms, garlic and peas, finished with a light cream tomato sauce and shaved asiago. The salmon po’boy — I had it blackened — is a stellar fish sandwich.

Try: the lobster bisque ($17). Creamy, smooth and near-divine. If there is a better bisque Down the Shore, I haven’t found it.

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