Dining notes: Bardea on Today Show; Grotto, Nicola share pizza honor; The awesome Mexicano Burger


Bardea Food & Drink, the James Beard Foundation nominated restaurant on Market Street in downtown Wilmington, will host a Today Show cooking segment on Monday, May 31 between 8:30 a.m. and 8:40 a.m. Eastern.

The live broadcast will take place from Bardea’s outdoor dining area. Co-Owners Scott Stein & Chef Antimo DiMeo will feature Bardea signature dishes. 

Before and after the election of Joe Biden to the nation’s top elected office, Bardea was  mentioned as a dining destination in numerous stories on the city and Delaware.

Earlier in the spring, Food and Wine magazine listed the best pizzas in all 50 states.

Nicola, Grotto earn 50-state  pizza honor

Delaware’s top pizzas came from two long-time Rehoboth Beach rivals, Nicola and Grotto, Food & Wine reported in April.

Both have their loyal customers and different ways of meeting the demand for their offerings. 

Grotto has grown to nearly two-dozen locations, mainly in Maryland and Delaware, while Nicola opted for two busy restaurants within a stone’s throw of one another in the beach town. Nicola also promotes at every opportunity its trademarked  Nic-o-Boli Stromboli.

Both have been in the news of late. with Grotto snapping up the former Dolle’s salt water taffy location, which will eventually become a restaurant.

Dolle’s moved a short distance away on the boardwalk. No word yet on the long-term future of its iconic sign.

By the way, we learned this week via the Washington Post that President Biden keeps  Dolle’s saltwater taffy around to satisfy his sweet tooth. The President and First Lady have a second (make that third)  home near Rehoboth.

Meanwhile, Nicola will leave  Rehoboth altogether for a parking-friendly site on Coastal Highway, just outside town.

Click here for the Food & Wine article on the best pizzas in all 50 states.

Burger update – The winner is Maile 

In a previous Our View column, I mentioned checking out a burger at an  In-N-Out in California. After returning from the Golden State, I checked out the Christiana Shake Shack. The verdict – Shake Shack is just a little better, although pricy by chain standards.

Then I had a chance to sample the Mexicano Burger at Maiale.

While best known for its sausages, the deli-restaurant on Lancaster Pike a little west of Wilmington came up with a prize winner with the Mexicano. The  Mexicano debuted at the Delaware Burger Battle a few years ago and won a place on the menu.

The Mexicano, which also comes in a sausage version, features seasoned ground chuck, roasted/poblano, cilantro, and cumin on a kaiser roll topped with pickled onion, Chihuahua cheese, and chipotle. 

It is an awesome burger cooked to perfection and  at $10 was a bargain in a world of $13 to $15 burgers.

Another establishment worth a mention is the Farmer and the Cow on Market Street in Wilmington.

There are plenty of other great burgers in the state. and your suggestions are warmly welcomed. – Doug Rainey


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