Leave the dishwashing to the professionals!

November 26, 2013
If you like to dress up and do it with tablecloths, lots of silverware and glasses, The Buttery, Victoria’s Restaurant, Baywood Greens and Ristorante Zebra will fill your fine-dining bill.

Not that long ago you would have been hard pressed to find many Rehoboth-area restaurants open in the off-season, much less on Thanksgiving Day. But as the number of fall/winter visitors continues to increase, and people continue to make our little town their home, restaurants keep the lights on with all sorts of off-season hours and specials. And this year I see more restaurants open for Thanksgiving Day than ever before. So I guess this is as good a time as any to kick off my first annual Turkey Day Roundup. Yes, I know there are still a few days left, but many of these places require reservations, so govern yourself accordingly!

If you like to dress up and do it with tablecloths, lots of silverware and glasses, The Buttery, Victoria’s Restaurant, Baywood Greens and Ristorante Zebra will fill your fine-dining bill. New kid on the block Aaron Berg will be wowing diners at the corner of Second and Savannah with a choice of roast turkey, twin filets, a frenched pork chop or, in homage to his native Anchorage, Alaska, seared salmon. This is The Buttery, after all, so the soups and sides will be outstanding.

Executive Chef Tom Deptula will be pulling out all the stops with a buffet extravaganza at Victoria’s in the Boardwalk Plaza. Midday seats are long since sold out, but my spies tell me there are still a few left for early afternoon and evening. If Thanksgiving is anything like their Christmas Day 2013 buffet lineup (16 items, including prime rib and turkey cordon bleu - plus a dessert table), Victoria’s selling-out will become another cherished local holiday tradition.

Executive Chef Mike Clampitt at Baywood Greens offers a buffet and several seatings in the ballroom and the dining room, both with great views of the golf course. Tariff is only $29.95, and reservations are nonrefundable. Back in Rehoboth, Ristorante Zebra rolls out a three-course prix fixe dinner (in addition to the regular menu) with choices like lobster bisque, a wedge salad, and either the traditional bird or prime rib platters. Seatings begin at 2 p.m., so a quick call might be in order.

If you’re looking for something a bit less formal, Abbott’s Grill in Milford satisfies everybody with its annual buffet. Kevin Reading, Paul Gallo and crew start preparing this extravaganza about the time the rest of us are going to bed the night before. Turkey. Two kinds of dressing. Ham. Pork loin. Sweet potatoes Anna. Truffled butternut squash lasagna. Flounder Florentine … the list goes on and on. You can even pile up a leftovers plate for only $10 more. So the obligatory 11 p.m. cold turkey sandwich with stuffing, cranberry and mayo on white bread can still happen!

Big Fish Grill not only mounts an on-site buffet, but also has a raw bar. And reservations are not required. They also do a holiday carry-out from Big Fish Market, but the ordering deadline is past. Speaking of carry-out, as much as I love restaurants, sometimes it’s fun to just kick back in a big ol’ schmata, put on your bunny slippers and eat at home. Nage and Root Gourmet team up to make that easy with complete dinner packages you schlep home, open up and dig in. They’ll feed a couple for $18.95 each or 10-12 of your closest friends for $179.

Other informal spots for giving thanks with a fork and knife include Dos Locos, with a la carte Thanksgiving platters from 1 to 7 p.m. Do not miss the outlandish pumpkin margarita and the cider-tini. Feeling Mexican? The entire menu is also available.

Just In Thyme has four courses for $28.95 and insists on reservations. Summer House dishes up an all-you-can-eat turkey platter for $21, plus crab cakes, prime rib, salmon, games on 17 TVs and a DJ at 9 p.m. Annabella’s in Lewes serves it all up for only $18, and Irish Eyes in Lewes dishes up holiday goodies for $28. The Brick Hotel in Georgetown does it with a colonial flair for $28 from noon to 4:30. Reservations are a must.

If you’re terminally turkey’d out after the big day, Shawn and Danielle Xiong are opening Confucius Gourmet Chinese on Black Friday to serve up their fresh, made-to-order dishes. Salt and pepper shrimp, glazed salmon, spicy Szechuan green beans, pepper pork, cold spicy noodles and kung pao chicken can sound mighty good after a day of all-turkey, all-the-time. So again, govern yourself accordingly.

  • So many restaurants, so little time! Food writer Bob Yesbek gives readers a sneak peek behind the scenes, exposing the inner workings of the local culinary industry, from the farm to the table and everything in between. He can be reached at

    Masthead photo by Grant Gursky. Used with permission from Coastal Style Magazine.