On the waterfront in Fairhaven, owned by Norwegian-American scallopers, serving first-class seafood at reasonable prices, Elisabeth’s is nothing short of spectacular. At first glance from outside, the corner restaurant looks a bit uptown with its stylish etched martini logo on the windows, but the interior is casual, walls bedecked with mounted fish and nautical nick-nacks, service friendly and relaxed.
The menu is vast, ranging from pizza and crabcake BLTs to plates of beautifully presented local seafood: haddock, swordfish, cod and – best of all – scallops. The scallops are dayboat beauties, each at least a couple of good forkfuls, available four different ways: baked, sliced in a cassoulet with lobster in sherry cream sauce, dusted with porcini mushrooms in thyme beurre blanc, and maple-bacon glazed grilled. That last one is a knock-out, a harmonic trio of three different sweetnesses. On the side, in a scallop shell comes a pillow of cheddar smashed potatoes.
Prior to the main course, chowder is essential. It is New England-style, but more buttery than creamy, loaded with good-size nuggets of tender clam and potato.
All sorts of cakes are available for dessert. Because the kitchen had run out of chocolate Almond Joy cake, I got espresso chip cake with coffee icing and Oreo cream cake. Believe me, these are not silly novelty items. They are bakehouse masterpieces – common cookie and candy flavors made holy. On the side of each slice comes a mound of whipped cream. I mean cream that is whipped, every morning, not something from a spray can.
If you are in the New Bedford area and like seafood, this place is a must.