7/20/11: we had our 36th anniversary lunch on the water at Elija's Restaurant in Wilmington, NC today.
We wanted somewhere that had the potential for good food, was on the water, and where we could have a view. Elija's satisfied all of the above.
We arrived about 1:30 PM on a Tuesday; they were surprisingly busy, we thought, for mid-day, mid-week.
We entered from the water boardwalk side, which placed us into the bar area. We went to the front to leave our names for a table, then returned to the bar where we had a drink while waiting for our water-view table.
The ambiance is nice, and all rooms are decorated in a nautical style.
I asked about Single Malt Scotch, and they only had one, McClelland's. This is not my favorite (I prefer peaty scotches from the Islay area, Lagavulin, Laphroaig, Ardbeg, as well as Talisker. They wanted $9.50 for it. I passed.
My wife and I each had a gin & tonic. They were cold and good. They were $6.50 each.
After a very short wait, we were shown to our tables. As promised, we had a water-view table.
Our server arrived promptly, and took our orders for another round of gin & tonic. While she went to obtain those, we chose our lunch.
For an appetizer, we chose the 'hot crab dip'. We both enjoyed it a great deal.
For our lunch, we each chose the fried oyster sandwich, which comes with french fries. We thought they did a good job with frying the oysters. However, almost every bite I had contained small pieces of oyster shell, while my wife said she never had any. I've eaten fried oysters everywhere, all of my life, and this is the most oyster shell I have ever encountered! In my opinion, they probably didn't wash the oysters off properly before breading them to fry.
The total bill came to about $65.00 for lunch, which included the two fried oyster sandwiches, one hot crabdip appetizer, and 4 gin & tonic drinks (2 each), plus tip.
We enjoyed our view, the interior, the service, the drinks, and the food.
In summary: we would come back for lunch or dinner.