Getting Fresh at the Beach: New Owners Bring Enthusiasm to Lime Rickey’s

Posted: May 26th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Casual/Pub Food, Lime Rickey's, Marblehead, Seafood | Tags: , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Despite the chilly weather, beach season officially starts this week. It came as a surprise to many at Marblehead’s Devereux Beach to see a banner adorning the seasonal food stand proclaiming new ownership.

The stand, which had been run most recently by Paul Petersiel of Swampscott’s Red Rock Bistro (which also houses another Lime Rickey’s location) was sold last month to Anthony Marino and Victoria Farnsworth, owners of Beverly’s popular Marino’s Café.

We were never particularly impressed with the old Lime Rickey’s, so were interested to hear of the change. We stopped by during their soft opening this afternoon to get the scoop on what beachgoers can expect this summer.

Much will stay the same, including the name, which Farnsworth told us they bought the rights to. (The one in Swampscott will change its name; we hear the restaurant is undergoing a change of ownership as well.)

The menu will stay true to classic New England beach shack cuisine, offering fried seafood, burgers and dogs, sandwiches, and Richardson’s ice cream. Keeping things hand made and local, says Farnsworth, will ensure fresh flavor and reasonable cost. The stand will steam lobsters fresh on-site, provided by lobsterman Jeff Bartlett out of Beverly, and the aim is to keep lobster and lobster roll prices as close to market value as possible. Other seafood will be provided by local company Patriot Seafood, who pick up at the dock in Marblehead.

One welcome change that we noticed was the size of the burger. Several ounces have been added, but cost hasn’t. The perky Farnsworth shakes her head. “Four ounces just wasn’t big enough.” Topped with healthy slices of tomato, lettuce, and onion and accompanied by a side of tasty homemade potato chips, it’s a definite improvement.

The portion size on the fish and chips wasn’t skimpy either. The light, crispy batter and hand-cut fries convinced us we’ll have to return to try the clams and shrimp.

We felt bad firing questions at this enthusiastic young couple while they were working out the kinks on their first day, but they took it in stride. Our visit has us looking forward to simpler fare prepared more thoughtfully, better value, and the possibility of fun things like live music and weeknight lobster dinners.

Lime Rickey’s
105 Ocean Ave, Marblehead
https://www.facebook.com/LimeRickeys

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Lime Rickey’s: Mom Would Never Approve

Posted: July 21st, 2009 | Author: | Filed under: Casual/Pub Food, Lime Rickey's, Marblehead, Seafood | Tags: , , , , , , , | 8 Comments »

When I was a kid, my mother would herd my siblings and all our friends to the beach on many a summer’s day, but plead as we might, she would never let us buy lunch there. Instead, we would grudgingly eat our limp tuna sandwiches, into which grains of sand invariably found their way, adding grit to every bite. The reason for this torture? Mom would repeat it like a mantra, “Buying food at the beach is too expensive. What do you think I am, made of money?”

Not surprisingly, all these years later, beach food is still expensive. Most beach shacks have a captive audience—unless you bring your own food, they’re the only game around, so their prices don’t have to be competitive.

We accept this; we only wish that Lime Rickey’s at Devereux Beach made us feel better about it. Unfortunately, the quality of the food that we have tasted is less than stellar, and the service, by what appears to be bored college kids, is lackluster at best.

The fried foods are priced similarly to those at the clam shacks in Essex and Ipswich, (clam plate is $18, shrimp plate is $16), but the quality doesn’t come close. The breading is heavy and over-fried, and the only selection that it doesn’t overpower is the scrod, making the fish and chips ($12) a reasonable choice.

The lobster roll is decent, if a bit frou-frou. (Call us purists, but tarragon doesn’t belong in lobster salad.) And at $16 each, these guys clearly haven’t heard that the boat prices have plummeted lately.

The burger is a smallish, previously frozen, overcooked patty, ($5) but the fries (small $3.25, large $4.75) are the coated-to-be-crispy kind and are tasty. For the same money, you could have stopped at Five Guys in Vinnin Square on your way to the beach and gotten a larger, much better tasting burger and much larger fries.

The ice cream, however, is excellent. It’s Richardson’s and is priced similarly to the other places you’ll find it in town, from $1.90 for a single scoop up to $3.90 for a triple.

Aside from the location, which can’t be beat, Lime Rickey’s does have two things going for it. The first is variety; they offer salads, wraps, hummus plates, and a few specialty sandwiches ($5 to $8) in addition to the more traditional beach fare. The second is free live music Friday and Saturday nights in August, and live music at the beach anywhere on the North Shore is pretty hard to come by.

Yes, we’re a bit nostalgic for the days when a hot dog and a Hoodsie could be had for a dollar and a quarter, but the truth is, there are so many excellent North Shore eateries to patronize, the next time we hit Devereux, we’re packing lunch.

Lime Rickey’s
Devereux Beach
105 Ocean Ave, Marblehead
(781) 631-6700
www.limerickeys.com

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