Leave it to a Chesapeake Bay-inspired restaurant to pair Old Bay with smoked salmon for brunch. The combo makes sense, and it's a welcome change from the usual bagel and cream cheese. At Ditch Plains in the West Village, the two are layered with thick-slab bacon, lettuce and tomato, and two (not three) slices of toasted whole wheat bread for a smoked salmon club ($15). It's a more virtuous choice than the indulgent brunch dishes featured here, with a large helping of fish and only a quiet schmear of Old Bay aioli for punch.
Delicious as it was, my favorite part of the meal was the surprise gift that comes with each check: a bar glass filled with saltwater taffy. The perfect thing for a hot summer day—particularly the kind when you'd rather be out on the beach.
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