At the Wetlands
Institute in Stone
Harbor, visitors view
the coastal habitat
from a raised walkway. The institute is
the starting point for
back-bay boat rides
and kayak tours.
SPIAGGETTA 9800 Third Avenue Stone Harbor
7 The name means “little beach” in Italian, but this spacious down- town trattoria has made a big impression since opening in 2012. Chef Marco Tarantino’s authentic regional Italian dishes include octopus salad, branzino over citrusy polenta, panko-crusted Jersey fluke, and pappardelle with lime-marinated shrimp. Pastas come from Tarantino’s mother-in-law, who hand-makes them daily. BYO.
mosphere is casual, the reasonably
priced lunch and dinner menus include brick-oven pizzas and fresh-made sushi, and the ocean view is
among the best on the Jersey Shore.
Similarly inviting is the Golden
Inn’s Sandbar, where drinks, salads, sandwiches and flat breads are
served from a tiki hut nestled behind
the dunes at 78th Street.
There are plenty of activities away
from the beach. A bike lane runs
the length of Second Avenue (in Stone
Harbor) and Dune Drive (in Avalon).
Traffic is minimal and bike rentals easy
to find. Ambitious riders can stretch their
trek north over Townsend’s Inlet to Sea
Isle City, or south on a breezy causeway
(Continued on page 70)
WATER STAR GRILLE
9601 Third Avenue
7Executive chef Tim Hamill joined from the Stephen Starr Organization, and last summer introduced a shared-plates
concept designed to accom- modate the large crowds
attracted by this bayside
hotspot. Go for a drink at
sunset or reserve a table
on the deck for dinner and enjoy dishes like fried blue point oysters and blue cheese salad; crawfish and roasted cauliflower bisque; pan seared grouper with udon noodles; and several exceptional beef options. CUP OR CONE? Madelyn Garlewicz of Chatham, left, digs into a cup of strawberry ice cream with sprinkles from Springer’s, while her cousin, Ethan Karten of
overloads on a cone of