Food & Drink

Sipping on the Dock of the Bay: Chespeake Bay Dock N Dines


When summer arrives on the Chesapeake Bay, our daydreams get taken over by thoughts of tables covered in brown paper with condensation rings from cold pitchers of beer, the pounding of crab mallets and the aroma of steamed crabs adorned in Old Bay seasoning. If you prefer your crabs picked and made into a cake, a creamy soup, or sprinkled atop a beef entree, you will find it dining dockside at these Maryland favorites.

Drift Bar Credit Alexa Zizzi

Drift Bar

Baltimore, MD

Life is easy breezy at the Drift Bar—Baltimore’s newest cocktail dock inspired by the upscale, laid-back ambiance of the Mediterranean coast. The vibe is elevated yet effortless, and so are the drinks. A delicious selection of libations from day drinks to night caps reflect the coastal resort life from Cannes to Capri, and now, Canton. The floating dock bar and former Bo Brooks Restaurant is a pleasant addition to the renovated Lighthouse Point Marina neighborhood. Shareable plates are presented by waitstaff sporting palm-print shirts and an upbeat, on-vacation demeanor. To keep things breezy, Drift Bar does not take reservations or call-aheads at this time.  

Where to Dock: Lighthouse Point Marina


Middle River, MD

LoonAsea is a “Looney’s Pub Joint,” the fifth in their popular lineup of Baltimore eateries. Sitting at the junction of Middle River and Hopkins Creek, the site is familiar to many cruisers as the former River Watch Restaurant & Marina. The restaurant has undergone a full rehab and is a now a lively, entertainment-focused destination. Boaters will enjoy the beachy Key West vibe of the indoor/outdoor restaurant and bar. The LoonAsea menu has staple favorites such as wings and cheesesteaks as well as a broad selection of seafood-based soups, sandwiches and entrees. Dive into their extensive steamed and raw bar, lots of gluten-free items, and the option to get your order “Looney’s Style” — adding Irish Bangers! Live entertainment is scheduled Thursday through Sunday.  

Where to Dock: LoonAsea Marina

Mikes Crabhouse Credit Alexa Zizzi

Mike’s Crabhouse

North Pasadena, MD

Mike’s Crab House North overlooking Rock Creek is a traditional crab house, featuring Maryland-style seafood with the specialty, steamed blue crabs. Large crab cakes with minimal filler are fried to perfection. Mike’s is reported to have the best crab dip around these parts, and the coconut shrimp and fried green beans are other customer favorites. Guests sit inside or out for dining or at a waterside tiki bar under cherry red umbrellas. Seafood specials, live music, karaoke and trivia nights draw big crowds. Mike’s North is open from the first week of April through September.  

Where to Dock: White Rocks Marina

The Broken Oar

Pasadena, MD

The Broken Oar’s website states, “The only thing we overlook is the water.” The restaurant with its panoramic views of Nabbs Creek is just a 30-minute cruise to downtown Baltimore and 45 minutes to Annapolis. Lunch and dinner are served in both the dining room/bar and on the large waterfront deck. The menu ranges from homemade soups, salads, sushi, fresh dough pizza and seafood to gourmet entrées with a crab cake designed to please the pickiest palate. Diners might even get a visit from the chef. Something “OAR-some” is always going on: Sunday bottomless brunch, live acoustic music, trivia or bingo — even a competitive cornhole game on the deck.  

Where to Dock: Nabbs Creek Marina

The Blue Heron Oyster House & Inn

Rock Hall, MD

The Blue Heron Oyster House & Inn is a fun little find with great local appeal. The eclectic menu has traditional and innovative mid-Atlantic seafood, along with spectacular shrimp, scallop and lobster specials. The Oyster Bar is laden with fresh bivalves. The Crab Centerpiece is a pound of jumbo lump dusted with Old Bay and served with crackers, cocktail and Old Bay tartar. Who can resist the Drunken Crabcake dunked in cream of crab soup? The covered tiki bar with its multi-color high stools is the perfect spot for a fruity crush or an after-dinner snowball.  

Where to Dock: Rock Hall Bulkhead

Dock House

Kent Narrows, MD

The simple, bright decor at Dock House is the perfect backdrop for its locally sourced coastal cuisine. Crab is everywhere on the menu — even crab cake grilled cheese. Steamers, a raw bar and signature cocktails like fresh watermelon crushes are served inside or on the spacious wrap-around deck. Panoramic views of boats cruising under the Kent Narrows drawbridge never get old. Order a Boat Box of specially selected menu items for a day on the boat. Dockage while dining is available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Where to Dock: Piney Narrows Yacht Haven

Libbey's Coastal Kitchen Credit Bay Bridge Marina

Libbey’s Coastal Kitchen + Cocktails

Stevensville, MD

The bold, bright red signage and multiple patios indicate you’ve arrived at Libbey’s Coastal Kitchen where the cocktails and cuisine are augmented by some of the bay’s best views. There’s no better place to sip an Orange Crush while taking in the wonder of the Bay Bridge and giant cargo ships passing by. Libbey’s offers creative dishes and libations curated from fresh, local ingredients rich in Eastern Shore tradition. Devour a jumbo lump crab pizza dockside, or head topside for a selection of entrees like Seafood Trinity in the stylish dining room.  

Where to Dock: Bay Bridge Marina

Kentmorr Beach Bar & Grill

Kent Island, MD

This laid-back bayfront spot sports beach vibes and a Caribbean style tiki bar on the shoreline. Step directly into the waterfront views to dine at a beautifully set table directly on the beach with warm sand under your feet and the rhythmic sound of waves providing a backdrop. In addition to a wide range of seafood dishes, sample culinary masterpieces like the “Inside Out Pie,” literally an inside-out blend of provolone, parmesan, pesto and fresh shore tomatoes all nestled in homemade pizza dough. Craft beer by Atlas Brew Works, fresh fruit crushes and cocktails like Bay Lights (coconut rum, melon, fresh pineapple and soda) round out the extensive menu served against spectacular sunsets.  

Where to Dock: Kentmorr Marina

Hidden Harbor Cafe

Lusby, MD

This little gem tucked away on Back Creek near Solomons Island offers casual dining at a reasonable price. The menu is limited but varied with offerings like the Harbor Hot Dog, which is bacon wrapped and loaded with slaw, onion straws and secret sauce. Another favorite is a bizarre sounding combo: a cheeseburger topped with pineapple, SPAM, bacon and fried onion. The huge crab cake is all meat, no filler and utterly Baylicious! Weekend brunch is a boater’s favorite as are the craft cocktails. The place is small with limited seating, so it’s best to plan ahead.

Where to Dock: Calvert Marina

Boats & Hose

Taylor’s Island, MD

Eastern Shore dining doesn’t get any more unassuming or authentic than Boats & Hose. Its unique name comes from the volunteer fire company next door. The restaurant owner also has a crab-picking business nearby, so all the crab dishes are workboat-to-plate fresh. Starters such as crab pretzels and fried oysters are delish, plus crab cakes, crab imperial, fried soft crabs and New York strip entrees are staples. Weekly specials run the gamut from deep fried cheesecake wontons with cinnamon sugar to filet topped with crab and shrimp in a remoulade sauce with a fresh pico de gallo topping. Expect casual dining, but reservations are suggested at this popular spot. Normally open Thursday through Sunday, hours can change seasonally, so call ahead.  

Where to Dock: Chapel Cove Marina

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