The C-View Tavern
If there ever was an iconic neighborhood tavern in Cape May, it’s the C-View Inn, and they have checked all the boxes to have earned that moniker. Situated on the corner of Washington Street and Texas Avenue, right there on one’s way out of town, locals and visitors alike have been dining and imbibing at this spot since 1948.
On the night we dined and imbibed there, the place was packed. Every table (approximately 20 of them) was filled, every seat at the bar was occupied. On this night, guests lined up outside for their tables were expecting a 15–30-minute wait. There was and is a diverse mix of folks who frequent the C-View — younger and older, with families, couples, and groups. They’re here for the vibe, friendly and familiar, but they’re drawn here for much more. More on that later.
Reginald, my trusty dining companion, and I know this place well. Many nights have been spent hunkered down in conversation over a pitcher or two, thoroughly exploring their menu, and somehow always ordering the very same thing each and every time. I like the Prime Rib Sandwich, and he invariably goes for the wings. But we were feeling adventurous, really crazy cuckoo, and we threw caution to the wind.
For starters, Reginald ordered the Manhattan Clam Chowder, his preference over the New England version because as he continually reminds me, he’s watching his figure. I get it because I have to watch his figure as well!
For my appetizer, I chose the Buffalo Scallops, sauteed and bathed in hot sauce and served with the traditional blue cheese dressing and celery sticks. You can also get them breaded and fried, but the sautéed ones are just right and sweet. I’ve ordered this dish a number of times and it never disappoints. And it’s a nice break from the wings…though I do dearly love C-View’s chicken wings.
So, yes. I had to order wings. They’re to C-View what coffee is to Wawa. Not even kidding. On Wednesday nights, it’s Wing Night and folks come from near and far to order them. It’s very popular with Coast Guard folks, for sure. It’s an Eat-in Only thing, and they’re offered with a huge variety of coatings (bone in or boneless) in mild, hot, suicide, teriyaki, honey hot, garlic parm, garlic hot, garlic honey hot, honey BBQ, and Thai chili. How does one even choose? This one goes for garlic parm, heavy on the garlic and sprinkles of good parm. And blue cheese dressing and celery. The Thai chili was my second choice, but really, all the flavors are delicious.
For his entree, Reginald ordered what I usually have, that being the Grilled Hot Pastrami on Rye with spicy mustard, sauteed onions, and melted Swiss cheese. The pastrami was thin, the sautéed onions in good proportion, and the Swiss cheese generous and melty. And then it was grilled. On the menu, this is called “The Sleeper of the House.” It’s really good, and though covetous, Reginald did give me one cubic inch of a bite.
We complemented all this goodness with a few pints of Yuengling Lager, crisp and thirst quenching and perfect. There is a huge selection of beers, both draft and bottled, conveniently listed on the menu, which is expansive.
There is something for everyone, and owner Gregg Coffey has kept the menu consistent and reliable since buying the C-View in 2007. There are three soups and a du jour, plus chili, all homemade. There are appetizers and salads, hot and cold sandwiches, tacos, quesadillas, cheesesteaks, wraps, ribs, and burgers.
There are draws to this cozy place that keep patrons returning again and again. First, their daily specials: Monday is Rib Night, Tuesday is Pizza/Taco Night, Wednesday, wings, of course, Thursday is Slider Night, and Sunday is Prime Rib Night. There are nightly blackboard specials too! Friday and Saturday are sports oriented (though games are on nightly) and can be viewed on one of their eight flat-screen TVs.
The C-View also hosts special events, including New Year’s Eve, St. Patrick’s Day—featuring our local Irish Pipe Brigade—and Halloween. There’s also an annual Crabapalooza, always in October, but this is dependent on the availability of the crab.
Should you venture over to the C-View, you can expect to find on-site and very nearby parking, fast service, cold drinks, and great no-fuss fare. Pro Tip: The Open Face Strip Steak served on garlic bread with onion rings, original fries, and coleslaw? Get that. And all the other things too! ■