Taste the coast

For the price of a single meal at some local restaurants, area residents and visitors will be able to sample a wide variety of food and drinks and listen to jazz music on Sunday, at an event that is becoming an early-summer staple in the Bethany Beach area.

Coastal Point • FILE PHOTO: The line to get into last year’s event illustrates the popularity this grand eating festival enjoys.Coastal Point • FILE PHOTO
The line to get into last year’s event illustrates the popularity this grand eating festival enjoys.

Nearly two dozen local restaurants will participate in the seventh annual Taste of Coastal Delaware, which will be held from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday in the Market Place at Sea Colony on Route 1 in Bethany Beach.

The Bethany-Fenwick Area Chamber of Commerce will present the event for the seventh straight year and receive its proceeds.

“For the restaurants, it’s a great way to showcase their menus with residents and visitors at the start of the summer season,” said Karen McGrath, the Chamber’s executive director. “For residents and visitors, it’s a really good time.”

Tickets for the event will cost $35 on Sunday or can be purchased in advance for a $5 discount. Those advance passes can be purchased at the Chamber visitor center in Fenwick Island, or at the South Coastal Library or The Parkway or Sedona restaurants in Bethany Beach.

Tickets are also available on the Chamber’s Web site at www.bethany-fenwick.org.

The 22 restaurants participating in the event will feature samplings of their favorite dishes, wines and beer with a musical backdrop provided by the jazz group of the Pam Miller Group.

Because of the diverse array of restaurants participating in the event, attendees will likely be able to find any sort of cuisine which they find appetizing, from steak to seafood.

These are the restaurants which will be offering samplings on Sunday: Armand’s Pizza, Baja Beach House Grill, Bethany Blues, Bluecoast Seafood Grill, Chalkboard Tavern & Grill, Dangerously Delicious Pies, Fat Tuna Grill, Fenwick Crabhouse, Gary’s Bethany Beach Grill, Harpoon Hanna’s, Magnolia’s Seafood Grill & Bar, Mango’s, Matteo’s Salsa Loco, Mickey’s Family Crabhouse, NorthEast Seafood Kitchen, Patsy’s, Sedona, Surf’s Edge Deli & Pizzeria, The Blue Crab, The Cottage Café, The Den at Bear Trap Dunes and The Parkway.

McGrath said that each year, the event has gained popularity and has drawn as many as 400 visitors. Once about 400 people enter the event, however, the doors will be closed.

“Obviously it’s grown over the years,” McGrath said of the popular event. “The past few years, we’ve been right about 400 people, which is right about where we can accommodate,” she added.

McGrath said that the Chamber wants to provide a comfortable atmosphere and keep lines for drinks and samplings as short as possible.

“We want people to access the food but not be too crowded,” she said.

If past experience is any indication, those attending the 2007 edition of the event will make for quite a crowd, as they take advantage of the opportunity to taste some of the area’s best cuisine.