Can you Taste it?
The Taste of Coastal Delaware is making its way back to the shore on Sunday, June 7. And, this year, the Bethany-Fenwick Chamber of Commerce is pulling out the stops. In addition to the Taste’s return to its original location at the Sea Colony Marketplace, there are a few more tweaks and changes that promise to make the 10th anniversary of the event a memorable one.
“The Taste of Coastal Delaware is one of our most anticipated annual events,” said the Chamber’s executive director, Andy Cripps. “This year is going to be a big one.”
While, for the past couple years, Taste has been held at Millville Town Center, it will be relocating this year to its prior location in the Sea Colony Marketplace parking lot, allowing, Cripps said, for a high traffic volume while avoiding the Route 26 bottleneck of beach-goers.
Guests familiar with the success of the event in the past and new faces wishing to learn of the delectable cuisine throughout the area will be pleased to see some favorite restaurants and chefs returning, as well as some new faces to Taste.
To date, The Blue Crab of Bethany Beach, Bluecoast Seafood Grill and Fish Market, Catch 54, Chalkboard Tavern and Grille, The Cottage Café, Fat Tuna Grill, Harpoon Hanna’s, Magnolia’s Seafood Bar and Grill, Matteo’s Salsa Loco, NorthEast Seafood Kitchen, Patsy’s restaurant and Sedona have all climbed on board for the 10th anniversary for the Taste of Coastal Delaware.
New names to the event – though they’ve already picked up a following in the area – are Mango’s of Bethany and West Fenwick Island’s year-old Caribbean-themed favorite, Jammin’ Jon’s Island BBQ.
The Chamber has also rallied support form many businesses throughout the area, including a new nationally-known title sponsor, luxury home builders Toll Brothers.
“It’s really great to have their support,” said Cripps. “It helps the whole event in terms of awareness, and it helps them, too. It puts their image in the community at a popular event. We’re happy to be doing what we can to bring new excitement to Taste of Coastal Delaware.”
Taste-goers will also be able to meet special guest-chef John Shields, who has become nationally acclaimed for his regional American coastal cuisine. Shields has written three award-winning cookbooks and has been the star of two cooking series on public television, “Coastal Cuisine” and “Chesapeake Bay Cooking.” He is also the head chef and owner of Gertrude’s restaurant at the Baltimore Museum of Art. Shields will put on a presentation at Taste of Coastal Delaware and, conditions permitting, plans to offer a cooking demonstration.
“John Shields is incredibly skilled and knowledgeable in what he does,” Cripps added. “With his shows, like ‘Coastal Cuisine,’ we saw his expertise as a natural fit for the event. He’s a terrific source, and we couldn’t be happier to have him with us.”
Some friendly competition has worked its way into this year’s event, too, as attendants will now be able to vote for People’s Choice awards for the best dish and the most attractive table display.
This year’s event entertainment will come courtesy of The Wes Davis Band.
“We’re hoping people come back each year,” said Cripps. “We also want to bring new people to the event, as well. We get a lot of visitors to this area from outside the coastal region, and we’d really like to expand our marketing to them.”
While parking has been a deterrent at the Sea Colony Marketplace location in the past, the Chamber has been working hard to ease the problem for the event’s return to that venue.
“Sea Colony has permitted us to use a vacant lot of theirs so that more guests and attendants can enjoy the event,” Cripps noted. The lot, owned and monitored by Sea Colony, is located just south of the shopping center, also on the west side of Route 1, so pedestrians will not have to contend with highway traffic after parking.
Tickets for the Toll Brothers 10th Annual Taste of Coastal Delaware on June 7 are now available for $35 each. They can be purchased online by visiting www.bethany-fenwick.org, by calling (302) 539-2100, ext. 16, or by stopping into the Chamber office, located at 36913 Coastal Highway in Fenwick Island.
Stay tuned to Coastal Point for continuing coverage and exclusive interviews leading up to the event.