Something to Bark About
It should surprise no one that my Eating OUT column in this issue is about outdoor spaces where well-behaved canines are welcome. And there are quite a few. In fact, Rehoboth is just crazy about pooches and it shows—from the bowls of fresh water outside many, many retail establishments, to the dog treats offered at the banks, Browseabout and a host of stores.
And while the time for dogs to walk the boards and romp on the sand is over for the season, there are those ubiquitous white benches all over town so canines and their humans can sit outside, enjoy a snack (dropped French fries are already my puppy Windsor’s favorite) and take in all Rehoboth has to offer.
For a grand time for the crew, try the Biergarten at The Purple Parrot, accessible from the open air area to the right of the restaurant as you face it, or a separate entrance off Wilmington Avenue. The outdoor dining area has a thatched roof tiki, high top tables and picnic tables and benches. In one corner and at the Wilmington Avenue entrance there are even Adirondack chairs for relaxed conversation and beverages.
Two weekends ago, Bonnie and I sat at a high top table, complete with convenient hooks under the table, mostly for parking ladies’ (or men’s) purses, but very handy for a dog leash as well. As we dined on hearty fried clam strips and Old-Bay-seasoned steamed shrimp, Windsor stretched out on the sand below, gnawing a Nyla-Bone we’d brought from home. Our meal was delicious, the beer was expertly cold, and the place buzzed with people having fun. It’s a great venue to come with a gang, including your canines (there were three other families with dogs there) and it was a perfect lunch.
This past weekend I went there again, with Windsor, my son Eric and my adorable grand dog Margo. This time we nestled in the spot with the Adirondack chairs and picnic table, dined on Quesadillas (delicious, with plenty of guacamole), fried pickles and, uh huh, cold beer. Perfect for a lazy Sunday afternoon in the sunshine. This time there were two Yorkies, a Beagle, and a Black Lab in attendance in addition to my Schnauzer and Eric’s Cockapoo. In a town known for diversity, we had it covered.
Just this past Monday, we dined al fresco again, this time at the CAMP courtyard and Lori’s Oy Vey Café.
This is another highly visible, highly welcoming spot for humans who wish to dine with their canine companions. I enjoyed Lori’s amazing egg salad (is it a touch of mustard that gives it the spice?) on wheatberry bread, while Bonnie had the scrumptious Granny Smith apple and brie sandwich on sublime French bread.
Not only is Lori’s a Rehoboth landmark, and purveyor of that amazing signature Chicken Salad (next time!), but there’s something about sitting in the courtyard, admiring all the dogs and their people, meeting friends and making new friends, that just shouts REHOBOTH BEACH!
Other dog-friendly venues in town include the outdoor spaces at Café Azafran on Baltimore Avenue (the best olive tapenade anywhere, along with luscious Mediterranean platters and the Spanish Platter of Serrano ham and Manchego cheese), Rigby’s on Rehoboth Avenue (Try the tomato tower and a Mojito), and The Seafood Shack on Baltimore Avenue (Crab dip!!!).
In fact, there will be a series of dog-friendly happy hours coming up over the next several months at the Purple Parrot Biergarten (July 19, Sept. 13), Café Azafran (May 10), The Seafood Shack (June 7, Oct 11), and Rigby’s (Aug. 16). These happy, or YAPPY hours will be something to bark about and Windsor has put them all on his calendar.
See you there!