March 11: Claddagh On The Shore in Fenwick, Delaware

Host Michael Sprouse eyes the spread during his interview with General Manager Paul Cuda.

Pleasant surprises are always the best surprises. Quite honestly, when we selected Claddagh On The Shore in Fenwick, Delaware as our next focus for this week’s Coastal Cuisine, we weren’t that familiar with the place.

We were trying to kill two birds with one “Blarney Stone” so to speak. We wanted something that would fit our month long look at Foreign Food and a place that would work to highlight the upcoming Saint Patrick’s Day celebration. What better place than a good, old Irish pub? After a web search and a few phone calls, we choose Claddagh On The Shore.

General Manager Paul Cuda has been with the restaurant for 21 years since the original Claddagh Pub opened in Baltimore. When host Michael Spruse first met him, he wanted to assure him that even though Claddagh On The Shore is an Irish themed restaurant and bar (Claddagh is the name of a traditional Irish gold ring which represents love, loyalty, and friendship), they have plenty of traditional American style cuisine available as well.

Since we were going for the Saint Patrick’s Day theme, we sampled some of the more traditional Irish fare off the menu as well as some of the more American styled entrées and appetizers as Paul suggested.

Now, here at Coastal Cuisine, we don’t wander into the valley of food reviews. We’re an atmosphere driven show and while we do always find exceptional food to eat while filming, we’re usually focused on the backstory of a particular place or person in the food business and we let the food speak for itself.

However, with that being said – and here’s the pleasant surprise – the food was spectacular, both the Irish (Sheppard’s Pie and the Rack of Lamb) and the American (French Cut Veal Chop, Pan Seared Scallops and Firecracker Shrimp).

Claddagh On The Shore may look like your everyday, unassuming Irish pub from the street (opened three year now, it’s located in a strip mall on the Coastal Highway in Fenwick – and according to Paul Cuda, it’s the largest restaurant in Fenwick), but once you step inside and order from the menu, you’ll soon realize that it’s much more.

The food really is superior and something you would expect from a high-end, big city restaurant, which makes it a very nice find for the little beach town of Fenwick.

Check out the segment below – and don’t miss the enthusiastic and very fun Irish jig performed by assistant cameraman Evan – which for some reason – didn’t make the televised version!