We wrapped up 2017 with a very relaxing stay in St. Michaels, Maryland. We were there to dog and house sit, more about that soon, but we also made sure to take full advantage of the local food scene. St. Michaels is a tiny town, but it packs a big culinary punch in the handful of restaurants lining its charming downtown. Ava’s Pizzeria is perhaps one of the most popular eateries in the area. Its cozy interior, dog-friendly winterized back patio and delicious cuisine made it a must-visit during our stay. And visit we did, four times over the course of ten days!
For our first stop, we dined in the adorable back patio with the dogs. We were so pleased to find places where we could take them despite the winter weather. Ashton and our temporary furry friend Dolce made themselves right at home next to the cozy fireplace and amazing beer tap water fountain.
We later returned for a drink on Tom’s birthday, drinks and snacks at the bar with a friend and lunch with Tom’s parents. Needless to say, we like this place a lot! Going so many times also afforded us the opportunity to taste our way through a lot of the menu.
Get It Started
First off, you’re going to want to order a bottle of wine. They’ve got a long list of bottles all for $20 each. Once you’ve got that handled, it’s time for some appetizers. We enjoyed the tomato bisque with basil oil, the seasonal salad and Ma’s meatball over the course of four visits. Hands down, our favorite starter of the trip was the baked oysters. Ava’s harvests them fresh every morning from the Chesapeake Bay. It doesn’t get any better than that.
Pizza is the main event at Ava’s and you’re not going to want to skip out. They offer brick oven pizza cooked in their 800 degree oven as well as Detroit deep dish. Although we intended to eventually try the deep dish, the brick oven pizza was so good we never strayed from it. We liked it so much that it made our pick for best pizza of 2017! What set it apart was the perfect thin crust and house-made mozzarella. So good!
We had the classic pizza caprese, so simple and perfect, and Tom’s parents let us taste their pizza caprese topped with Caesar salad (a special) and the meat, meat & meat. All three were outstanding!
Pasta and More
If you’re just not feeling pizza, they also have a great selection of sandwiches and heartier entrées. During a lunch visit, I had the seasonal pasta with butternut squash and linguine. It didn’t excite me quite as much as the pizzas, but it was still very tasty.
Also from the mains selection, Tom had the chicken parmesan with more of that house-made mozzarella and a side of spaghetti. I kept stealing bites of the chicken, which was perfectly smothered in cheese and sauce.
Shake It Up With Dessert
On our first night at Ava’s Pizzeria, we noticed several tables around us ordering the Eastern Shore beignets. Besides the fact that they consistently smelled amazing, we were enamored by the process of the server shaking them up in a paper bag full of powdered sugar. We waited until we had some backup to help us eat them (Tom’s parents) before ordering them on our final visit of the trip. It was worth the wait! They come out piping hot with a side of raspberry sauce for dipping.
If you ever find yourself in St. Michaels, a visit to Ava’s Pizzeria is non-negotiable no matter what season it is. Stay tuned for more of our favorite eats from our trip!