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BJ's on the Water
Written By: Jenny Samuels
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BJ's on the Water
BJ's on the Water
A bird sanctuary and daily duck feedings bring flocks of wildlife to BJ’s on the Water.
BJ's on the Water
The staff at BJ’s provides superior service in front of an awesome backdrop—the gorgeous bayfront on 75th Street.
BJ's on the Water
Our server, Mike, took excellent care of April and me during our dinner at BJ’s, where our table overlooked the panoramic bayfront.
     Still the same? Not exactly. An Ocean City tradition with a rich history, BJ’s on the Water presents something old and something new. The happy hour, live entertainment, raw bar, and classic seafood and steaks are still the same. The expanded stage and dance floor were added last year, and a new rooftop bar is slated for construction this winter.
    My favorite feature of BJ’s on the Water, aside from its food, is the bird sanctuary on the marshland directly in front of the restaurant’s deck. Here, you’ll find a plethora of wildlife, including mallards, herrings, Canadian geese, cranes, pelicans, and many other fascinating species. Daily duck feedings attract wildlife of all kinds, including jumping fish and thirsty humans (who stay for Happy Hour from 4-7 p.m. Monday through Friday).
    BJ’s raw bar and amazing sandwiches are major crowd pleasers, as well as the fact that its entire menu is served until 1:30 a.m., seven days per week, year ‘round. Not many restaurants serve food that late, especially the menu in its entirety. So, you can dine on a scrumptious entrée like Shrimp Imperial or Chicken and Shrimp Teriyaki, while you jam to live music late nights on Friday and Saturday.
    BJ’s house band is Teenage Rust and the Fabulous Rustettes, featuring the one and only Billy and Maddy Carder, the married couple who own BJ’s on the Water. Their next date at BJ’s will be Wed., Oct. 31, for their annual Happy Hour Halloween party. It’s always a hoot to see Billy in his Frankenstein head singing “The Monster Mash.” Come in costume or without but do come - one of the best parties in town and it’s early.
    Other locally legendary bands that frequently grace the stage at BJ’s include Tranzfusion, Sir Rod, No Byscuyts, Full Circle, Opposite Directions, and the Chest Pains. All of these rocking dance bands keep the dance floor packed on the weekends and on every Wednesday from 4:00 to 8:00 during the “Deckless Deck Party.”
    Of course, there is a deck. In fact, the deck wraps around the restaurant offering a panoramic vantage point of the marshland, bayfront, and wildlife that surround BJ’s. An outdoor dining area with large, umbrella-covered tables adjoins the indoor dining room and raw bar, which includes a wall of windows overlooking the water. The dance floor and barroom are completely separate from the family-friendly dining room.
    I enjoyed a waterfront dinner with my bombshell friend, April Imparato, RN. Our server was Mike, who took fantastic care of us for the duration of our visit to BJ’s on the Water. We sat at a four-top table amongst many happy families with kids and adults enjoying the panoramic bayfront view. Located on 75th Street bayfront, BJ’s on the Water is ideally situated on the portion of Ocean City that, in my opinion, boasts the best views of the sunset. The Route 90 Bridge and marshland set off the colors in the sunset sky and make them pop.
    The fresh catch of the day was Swordfish, which is served grilled, Cajun, or stuffed with crab imperial. Other daily specials were 16-ounce Black Angus T-bone Steak and Cream Pepper Soup with Crab Meat. Succotash was the vegetable of the day and Peach Daiquiri was the drink special.
    For our starter dishes, April and I shared a plate of Mussels Mania steamed in white wine and garlic butter, and a plate of Feta Fusion—roasted feta cheese, red peppers, black olives, Greek oregano, extra virgin olive oil, and cracked bell pepper with multigrain crackers. It tastes as amazing as it sounds.
    For our main course, I ordered my go-to favorite sandwich at BJ’s—the Black Russian. A combination of turkey, roast beef, Swiss, and lettuce on pumpernickel bread, this overstuffed sandwich is smothered in Russian dressing and good to the last bite. April ordered the Swordfish stuffed with Crab Imperial. “Ohhhh. Awesome!” she said when she took her first bite. A highly recommended entrée at BJ’s is the Seafood Medley—a broiled combination of flounder, crab cake, deviled crab, shrimp, and clam casino. Grand-i-oli Ravioli is a winning entrée, too, served jumbo size and stuffed with five Italian cheeses. One of my favorite entrées at BJ’s is the Pasta BJ’s—pasta topped with homemade basil tomato sauce and flash fried gulf shrimp, served with garlic bread and garden salad. Stuffed Filet of Flounder, Lump Crab Imperial, Stuffed Lobster Tail, and Twin Crab Cakes round off the seafood entrées at BJ’s, while land lovers can indulge in New York Strip and Chicken Teriyaki. Remember, all entrées are available until 1:30 a.m. and are served with warm rolls and two side items.
    The Sandwich menu is very impressive at BJ’s. Pork Barbeque and Hot Pastrami are two classics. BJ’s Famous Razorback is hot ham, tomato, mushrooms, and melted Swiss on 12-grain toast with tarter sauce. Salmon BLT and Crab Cake BLT are lip-smacking good. Grilled Mahi Mahi, Fish Filet, and Fried Oyster Sandwich are equally irresistible. Try the Seafood Salad Wrap for a combination of shrimp, scallops, and lettuce in an Old Bay wrap. I’m a huge fan of BJ’s “titanic-size” Chicken Salad on Texas Toast. Dogs, Burgers, and more are included on the mega Sandwich menu.
    For starter dishes, BJ’s on the Water offers locally famous Seafood Skins—potato skins topped with seafood salad and melted cheddar cheese. Both Mike and April rave about these skins. Crab Dip, Rockfish Fingers, Buffalo Shrimp, Calamari, Pizzette Crab Imperial, and Middleneck Clams are just a few more munchies available all day and night at BJ’s.
    An abundance of soups are available, too, including Onion Soup and Maryland Crab Soup. Salad lovers should try the Crab Meat Chop Chop Salad—lump crabmeat, Romaine, bleu cheese crumbles, and bacon, tossed in Ranch dressing and topped with onion straws. Yum! Greek Salad, House Salad, and Steak Salad are a few more healthy options. Try the Caesar Salad topped with Key Largo grilled gulf shrimp, or try the Bang Bang Smoked Chicken served over greens with honey mustard dressing. Oyster Chesapeake is BJ’s classic Caesar topped with a half dozen plump, juicy, flash-fried oysters.
    BJ’s - “Still the Same.” 410-524-7575 or visit www.bjsonthewater.com  .

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