(Jan. 11, 2019) Fifteen local restaurants are taking part in the 2019 Berlin Restaurant Week, which began on Monday and will continue through Sunday.

The event began in 2016 to encourage patrons to try new eateries and to dine during the offseason, as restaurants offer special menus and discounts in an attempt to attract new customers.

The Town of Berlin hosts the event and Cam Bunting and Bunting Realty. sponsor Berlin Restaurant Week.

“I wanted to do something to help the community and nobody was doing a restaurant week, so I thought I would take my time and organize it, and here we are,” Bunting said.

Patrons who dine in three or more restaurants may also be entered into a drawing to win $100 and a basket of gift cards to participating restaurants. Entry cards are available at each restaurant and can be stamped with each visit, and then returned to the Berlin Welcome Center on 14 South Main Street.

Restaurant owners say the event has been successful, Bunting said.

“They enjoy doing it and you can get some good meals at good prices,” she said. “People can sample all the different restaurants in town, and I look forward to it as well, and to seeing what all the restaurants are doing.”

Economic and Community Development Director Ivy Wells has been posting special menu updates on a “Berlin Restaurant Week” Facebook page. Visit the site at www.facebook.com/events/314306779175122.

Early response from the public has been strong, Wells said.

“I’m really excited about the response we’ve gotten and Restaurant Week hasn’t even started yet,” Wells said last Wednesday. “People are already making plans to come to Berlin for it.”

Bunting said the desired takeaway is simple: a full belly for anyone who partakes.

“Just come to Berlin,” she said. “It’s a quiet time of the year, and you can bring some friends and have some good food and good fellowship.”

Burley Cafe

Micalene Dorcak, left and Sarah McCree toast the start of Berlin Restaurant Week at the Burley Café on Jefferson Street. More than a dozen downtown restaurants are offering specials through Sunday, including bottomless mimosas and choice of three small plates for $30 at the Burley Café.

Participating restaurants and specials as of press time include:

Fins Ale House and Raw Bar (119 North Main Street):

Thursday: Crab cake night. $7 crab cake sliders, $10 crab cake sandwich with one side, $18 crab cake entree with two sides from 4-8:30 p.m.

Friday: All day happy hour from 11 a.m. until 6 p.m. Chef’s featured dinner specials from 4-9:30 p.m.

* Free dessert with purchase of any entree from 4 p.m. until close all week

The Globe (12 Broad Street):

The Globe will launch a new menu on Jan. 7. Restaurant Week specials feature $10 “Sweater Weather Specials,” including $1 off half bottles of wine and growler specials.

On What Grounds (103 North Main Street)

Specials include a $6 made-to-order breakfast sandwich and small coffee, or upgrade to any other drink and get $1 off the additional price.

Burley Café (17 Jefferson Street):

Choose any three small plates and drink bottomless mimosas for $30. There is a two-hour time limit and no repeat items or sharing is permitted. Small plates include half house waffle, one breakfast taco, half veggie bake, half Burley bake, half French toast, half fruit bowl, and sausage gravy on one sweet potato biscuit.

Baked Dessert Café (4 Bay Street):

$6.99 lunch specials include gluten-free crabby mac and cheese with a side salad; Monte Cristo croissant (turkey, brie, raspberry preserve) with side salad; beef Bourguignon with savory scone; and a vegan-friendly veggie wrap on whole-wheat tortilla.

The $4.99 “sweet special” includes a sample plate of Baked Dessert’s signature cupcake bread pudding, croclair and peach dumpling.

DiFebo’s Restaurant (104 North Main Street):

Specials include two entrees: carved flat-iron stake served with crab mac and cheese with peas and pancetta, $18; or house-made pappardelle pasta Bolognaise served with seasoned ricotta and melted mozzarella cheese, $18. Additionally, the restaurant is offering half-price pizzas and $6 house wines, sangria and dessert specials.

Crush N Crab (525 South Main Street):

$5 breakfast items, from 7-11 a.m., include two pancakes and two eggs; two egg and cheese bagel sandwiches or one egg and meat sandwich; cheese omelet with toast; and biscuits and gravy with potatoes and one egg.

$10 lunch items, from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m., include soup and sandwich (grilled cheese quarter-pound hot dog); cup of coup with BLT or ham and cheese; side salad and sandwich (BLT, grilled chicken, fried flounder, hamburger or ham and cheese); and soup and side salad. Soups that apply are cream of crab, Maryland crab, chicken and dumplings, chili or soup of the day.

$20 build-your-own seafood platter features the choice of any two items: crab cake (broiled or fried); soft shell crab (broiled or fried); half-pound steamed shrimp; eight large fried shrimp; flounder (broiled or fried); six-to-eight fried oysters; fried clam strips; one pound of steamed mussels; or grilled tuna. Dinner includes coffee, tea, soda or lemonade; a choice of two sides; homemade dessert or a scoop of any ice cream.

Burn Wood Fired Pizza (10019 Old Ocean City Blvd):

Three-course meals for $20 per person feature a caprese salad, eggplant rollantini appetizer and main-course choice of fettuccine Bolognese or chicken pesto.

Blacksmith (104 Pitts Street):

Three-course meals are $30.

First-course options include: authentic Caesar salad; blue cheese salad; roasted butternut squash bisque; shrimp and grits; Nashville chicken; and stacked crispy eggplant.

Second-course choices include: wild red snapper; steak frites; shrimp Thai curry; hand-cut pappardelle pasta; shrimp risotto; and crispy duck breast.

Third-course options are: flourless chocolate torte; Key lime pie; bundt cake of the day; and fried banana cheesecake.

Main Street Deli (10 South Main Street):

Specials include spaghetti and meatballs, $4.50, and a meatball sub for $6.50.

Gilbert’s Provisions (116 North Main Street):

Specials are two tacos and a cup of soup for $10.

Rayne’s Reef Soda Fountain & Grill (10 North Main Street):

Order a burger and fries, and get a free ice cream for dessert.

The Atlantic Hotel (2 North Main Street):

The lunch special is fish and chips with coleslaw and tartar sauce for $10.

For dinner, the Atlantic Hotel Bistro Trio special is $33 and the special starts at 5 p.m. The meal includes a garden salad, a main course consisting of a 1/2 rack of New Zealand lamb, sliced roasted tenderloin of beef, and a grilled skewer of shrimp and scallops. The dessert course is a white chocolate cream brûlée and berries.

The Burley Inn Tavern (16 Pitts Street):

Receive 10 percent off when mentioning Berlin Restaurant Week.

Josh Davis is an MDDC award-winning editor and reporter at the Bayside Gazette and Ocean City Today newspapers, covering Berlin and Ocean Pines, Maryland. He is the author of three novels, including 'Vanishing is the Last Art' (2012). He lives in Berlin.

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