April 23rd, 2011
The Grove Market, Smokehouse, Eatery, Bishopville, Maryland, Restaurant, Review, Good Food? Will Travel
I really don’t mind driving distances to go to a good and unique restaurant. I do mind waiting in line to get into a restaurant, though. And with that in mind my husband and I went to meet Ross and Cindi at The Grove Market in Bishopville, Maryland.
The Grove Market is at 12402 St. Martins Neck Rd., Bishopville, MD 21813. Tel. 410-352-5055. No website. And, if you are planning on having dinner there, bring cash or check. No credit cards are accepted.
That being said and done, the next step is you have to go through the process of getting a reservation. All you have to do is call. But don’t expect to get a reservation that pronto. Well, maybe, if you are lucky or have a good friend like I do. Even though I think Leslie, the owner, knows me now. When you call, leave your request and I would even leave a second choice for time and day.
The Grove Market is very small, and so popular. Be patient. I have written a couple of times about it and questioned if it has been worth going through the “ordeal” of making the reservation. Every time the answer is, Yes!! It is that good.
This was their opening week-end for the new season. From Rehoboth Beach it takes about 45 minutes. Go Ocean Highway until the Rt. 90 Bridge. Take that exit and continue to the next light. Turn right on St. Martins Neck Rd. and continue driving for about 1 1/2 miles. It is on the left hand side of the road. A tiny little place. Check the picture so that you can remember it.
It was packed, but Leslie moved her patrons quickly. Don’t expect to stay there forever.
The Grove Market looked good; all spruced up for the season but always keeping that look that makes it so unique.
I was so happy to see that John McDonald was at the helm of the tiny kitchen. He is a fantastic chef.
We were seated in the back room which I really like; only 3 tables and backyard view. It is funky. There were lights and signs and, wow, also flowers on the table. Yes, the tables are plastic, and the tablecloths are faded. That is why you go there; so different, but the food is the icing on the cake.
In the back dining room, your waiter will take your order for beer or wine. Bottled water is available, as well.
Then, the waiter will announce the appetizers. There is no written menu, did I tell you that? Everything is from memory. Plenty of appetizers for the size of the restaurant. I could not copy one thing down so bear with me and check the pictures.
I chose the clams in a very well seasoned broth. Thank God they brought a spoon. All gone, it was.
My husband chose the mussels. I was surprised because he never orders them. I am the one that loves them. Just as good as my clams.
Cindi had the soup. This was a beet and tomato soup. The color was just beautiful.
Ross had the beef kabobs. The rind of the orange and the combination of seasonings were tremendous; so tender.
Soon we were ready for the main event. And this is how it went.
I ordered the lamb. I wish I could remember everything he said. The lamb was a very big portion. It had chutney and raisins; a little Indian, maybe? A little sweet and tangy. I could not eat it all. Served with a breadstick, which is the recipe that was used many years ago when they had pizza.
My husband ordered the scallops with risotto and asparagus. I have had them; very good, as well.
Cindi ordered the shrimp. She was a happy camper.
And, Ross orders the same thing every single time. The Duck. Well, he gave me a piece and I can now see why. It was crispy and the sauce was tremendous; a semi sweet soy drizzle with an English cumberland sauce. I will have it next time.
No room for dessert, except Ross ordered the chocolate pie. He asked for extra forks but he only gave me a bite. Smooth texture; if you like chocolate, order it.
I am going to have to take a notebook next time to write the ingredients down. What happened was that between the talking and more bla bla bla, then, hello? It was over. You got the idea, though.
Please note: The Grove Market is sensitive to customers with food related allergies.
Since I started this blog almost 2 years ago I can tell you that the majority of the time I have had good meals; but also some lukewarms, as well. I give the benefit of the doubt and go again. Everyone can have a bad night. It is when those bad nights are consistent; then there is a problem. I guess I have been lucky or easy to please.
Sharing a meal with friends is something else…I love it!!
Talk to you later….you know I will…