Blink and you’ll miss it. And you’ll be sorry if you do. Nestled in a tiny strip center in Fenwick Island (between Quiet Storm and the Fenwick Bike Shop on the east side of Coastal Highway across from Fenwick Crab House), this delightful little spot is already making waves in an area where some aging eateries coast along, resting on past laurels. It’s time for new and upbeat places that aren’t burned out. And Carlie & Scott’s One Coastal is leading the way.
I knew I was going to like this place when I read on the menu: “No Amex, substitutions, parties larger than 8 [they’d fill the place!], or general grumpiness.” The dinner menu consists of 7 or so core entrees, and there are always some specials. Two generous-looking salads are available, plus a fun selection of sides including risotto, maple-bacon brussel sprouts (!) and toasted coconut rice (just to name a few). These are sides that require preparation and don’t take well to being prepared at nine int he morning to be served at 9 that night. I am impressed.
This is a “sneak peek,” which means that we have only been there once. But we were lucky that that once was when the chilled cucumber soup was the soup of the day. We also tried the blackened scallops and a special appetizer, fried green tomatoes decorated with a surprising abundance of crabmeat. Impressed again. You can see all these dishes by scrolling through the gallery above and below.
Our entrees included a “breakfast for dinner” special (which I of course ordered) consisting of a chorizo-laced cream gravy over a plump and fluffy (not unlike myself, in fact) biscuit. I eschew fried zucchini because it is always limp (zucchini is about 99.999% water). I’m not quite sure what Chef Gary Wilson (remember him from Parkway?) does to these zucchini spears, but they were startlingly firm with the perfect crisp on the breading. One thing is for sure, the guy knows how to work a fryer. The “local steak” entree last night was a very nice ribeye. It is the upper cut that begins to look more like a T-bone. Our other two companions got the fish oscar special (take a look at that one in the gallery!). One of the most attractive presentations I’ve seen in a while. The dish was accompanied by those maple bacon brussel sprouts (you can choose from the sides list on some platters).
There will be more visits, more photos, and more thoughts on the subject. In the meantime, venture into the southern hinterlands and check out One Coastal. Reservations are strongly recommended. We sat near the door, and at least 5 parties were very politely and apologetically turned away. It was full when we got there, and it was full when we left.
By the way, if you have been living right and the planets are properly aligned, young Andrew might be your busboy. He’s around 14 or so, and converts your dinner into a dinner and a show. He is friendly, a bit snarky, and happy to return any and all comments directed to him. He made our meal even more enjoyable. And he will not allow your water glass to be less than 90% full.
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