Eastern Shore Eats
Eastern Shore Restaurants And Dining
The crisp blue sky blanketed Coastal Virginia this past weekend, acting as an infinite backdrop for our Sunday afternoon. Though true Virginia Beach locals, we'd never ventured over to the neighboring Eastern Shore. The lengthier Memorial Day weekend was the perfect opportunity for a quick day trip and to discover a new area, a hobby the husband and I often miss since moving back home after college.
In all honesty, new towns are really for the sake of new food for my taste buds to trailblaze.
We began our food journey winding through the Chesapeake Bay and a few tunnels before it opened up into a hushed grassy spectacle that we'd grown accustomed to missing at home. Produce and firework stands lined Highway 13 leading us to our first stop: Chatham Vineyards. We slipped into the tasting room and tried five wines. Following our last sip of the dessert wine, we decided to purchase two glasses of their oak blend Chardonnay and a bottle of their bordeaux-style Vintner’s Blend to tote home. Outdoor furniture scattered about the surrounding farm area where we set up a picnic with some goodies we packed from home: almonds, manchego cheese, gouda cheese, crackers and fruit.
An hour later we were unsure of where to head next on our adventure. The lovely lady from the tasting room suggested we stop in Cape Charles and specifically mentioned a homemade ice cream parlor. I was sold. Many a fruit stand and a couple turns later, we found the quaint beach town and parked on Mason Avenue parallel to the harbor. In search of the ice cream we got distracted with a chalkboard displayed outside of Kelly's Gingernut Pub reading: soft shell crab sandwich. Famished and ready for a more substantial meal, we agreed to split their daily special. The soft shell crab was delivered open-faced with a side slaw, homemade chips and a spicy aioli. We slathered it on, took one bite and felt like true locals.
Even though Cape Charles seemed more touristy, the pub felt like a neighborhood bar where everyone knew each other. We cleaned the plate and left the pub to continue our hunt for the mysterious aforementioned ice cream. A half block later we came across Brown Dog. The parlor was packed out, but my husband knew I wouldn't budge. He waited in line with me insisting he would be getting nothing. This was until he read their current flavors and quickly decided on the chocolate raspberry balsamic.
Brown Dog crafts their ice cream in small batches, so the flavors are prone to change hourly. I doubled up with one scoop of honey pistachio and one of the lemon vanilla chia seed. The lemon vanilla bursted with citrus and honestly tasted like lemon poppyseed cupcakes. The honey pistachio was more honey than pistachio, but I was okay with that. The pistachios were more of a mix-in in the sweeter than sweet honey ice cream. Other mentionable flavors that couldn’t fit in my cone were Banana Pudding with Vanilla Wafers, Mixed Berry Cheesecake and Roxie Scotch (butterscotch).
We departed from the Eastern Shore stuffed but in anticipation for the next time we shall return. Whenever we feel like we need a quick getaway or just some really tasty ice cream, a crab sandwich or wine, we’re comforted knowing the Eastern Shore is just a winding through the Bay and a couple tunnels away.