Don’t Overlook the Dining Scene Below the Inlet

Crab and macaroni cheese balls are reason enough.

On Garfield Parkway, Onur Cekmecelioglu this year turned Romeo’s Kitchen into Bethany Diner, and the menu travels from Greece to Italy to Maryland. There are gyros, fried or baked crab cakes, burgers and club sandwiches. There’s also lasagna, sweet-and-sour chicken and broiled trout. And, of course, breakfast is available all day. (There’s a weekend breakfast buffet.) 792A Garfield Parkway, Bethany Beach, 616-1117.

The Den at Bear Trap Dunes in Ocean View opened this year under Troon, a golf-course management company. (The restaurant was previously DiFebo’s Bistro on the Green at Bear Trap Dunes.) The dining room received a makeover to give it a bright coastal theme, says Lindsey Maurer, director of sales and marketing. The floors and bar are also new. Executive chef Thomas Watts has crafted a dinner menu whose selections include small plates like Asian lettuce wraps, salads, wood-stone pizzas and such entrées as pan-seared mahi mahi with lime in a yuzu-sun-dried tomato reduction. The restaurant also serves lunch. 7 Clubhouse Way, Ocean View, 537-5600,

In the Market Place at Sea Colony, John and Randy Fels have opened Summer Salts Café. The brothers cut their teeth working in beach-area restaurants before taking the plunge into entrepreneurship. Dishes include shrimp, crab and macaroni cheese balls, zucchini fries with ranch dressing, burgers, a crab cake club, prime rib and fish tacos. 33548 Market Place at Sea Colony, Bethany Beach, 541-5500.

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The Quiet Resorts have become the site of some expansions. Claddagh on the Shore, which opened in June, is the sister of the Claddagh Pub & Restaurant in Baltimore’s Canton neighborhood. With selections such as crab cakes, hot Maryland crab dip and Buffalo wings with Old Bay, the menu leans more toward the Eastern Shore than the Emerald Isle. But you will also find a rack of lamb spiked with an Irish whiskey demi-glace and a hot corned beef sandwich. 1106 Coastal Highway, Fenwick Island, 537-4200,

The Crabcake Factory Bayside has two sister restaurants in Ocean City, Md. Not surprisingly, there’s Maryland crab soup—vegetable and cream versions— as well as crab cakes served five ways, soft-shell crabs and crab-cake salads. The restaurant also serves burgers, shrimp, lobster and baby-back ribs. 37314 Lighthouse Road, Selbyville, 564-7043,

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