Perhaps you've heard of the phrase "farm-to-table restaurant."
What does it mean?
It generally refers to a restaurant that places an emphasis on using food that is locally grown, rather than distributed elsewhere. Since we're at the ocean, it could also mean fresh seafood, literally taken off the Jersey Shore, often from local fishermen.
This is by no means a be-all-end-all-list, but it should spark some ideas of Atlantic and Cape May area restaurants that seem to embrace the farm-to-table concept.
Cafe 2825 in Atlantic City, 2825 Atlantic Avenue
A restaurant with a Southern Italian menu, with most dishes made from scratch. Their menu can be found here.
The Ebbitt Room in Cape May, 25 Jackson Street
How fresh are their ingredients? They have their own farm! Beach Plum Farm. They have several menus, including a seasonal menu.
The Tuckahoe Inn in Marmora, 1 Harbor Road
This family restaurant has been in operation since 1963. The menu features a lot of New Jersey seafood choices and much more.
Sweet Amelia Market and Kitchen in Newfield, 994 Harding Highway.
It doesn't get much fresher than oysters straight from their own oyster farm on the Cape May Peninsula. Add to that local grown and sourced produce - some grown right there on the premises.
Lots of national and regional recognition. Esquire Magazine named Sweet Amelia's one of the Top 40 New Restaurants in America in 2022. The menu can be found here.
Steve and Cookies By the Bay in Margate, 9700 Amherst Avenue.
An awesome menu with much locally sourced food, including, according to their website, fresh produce from Reed's Farm in Egg Harbor Township. "Our food, while remaining true to the classics that our fans love, continues to evolve as we are constantly searching out the best ingredients that fit our ethos of fresh and local."