A charming city with small town ambiance, located less than an hour from the US capital, Bowie, Maryland is home to an impressive selection of restaurants serving everything from contemporary Asian fare and seafood to homemade ice cream. Check out our guide to Bowie’s 10 best restaurants.
Restaurant, Chinese, Asian, $$$
Serving Asian-inspired cuisine, artfully married with locally sourced ingredients, Grace’s Mandarin is a stunning three-level restaurant with beautiful views over the Potomac River. The restaurant is one of Bowie’s best fine-dining establishments and guests can opt for Grace’s stunning sushi, made from both domestic fish and produce flown in from Tokyo’s famous Tsukiji Market, teamed with the restaurant’s impressive range of sakes, or opt for a dish from executive chef Orion Chen’s main menu such as Kobe filet mignon or Penang curry shrimp.
A local dining tradition since its first location opened in neighboring Lanham in 1983, Jerry’s Seafood is known throughout the area for its gourmet seafood dishes and friendly, first-rate service. Its Bowie branch is Jerry’s newest location and features a gorgeous dining room decorated in warm, earthy tones and, like its original Lanham location, serves its legendary crab bomb. Ten ounces of jumbo lump crab seasoned with Old Bay before being baked to perfection. Other standout dishes include the Maryland crab soup with spicy sausage, vegetables and a tomato base and the fresh hand-filleted Atlantic salmon.
Fresh, casual fare and warm, friendly service is the order of business at Chesapeake Grille & Deli, a popular local, family-oriented restaurant serving a vast range of simple and tasty eats that are perfect for light lunchtime dining or a casual evening meal. Appetizers include dishes such as onion-battered fried green beans with spicy ranch sauce and lump-crab flatbread pizza while heartier dishes include bay chicken pot pie and beer-battered rockfish with fries. Chesapeake Grille & Deli is an accessible place for those with specific dietary requirements, with plenty of gluten-free and vegetarian options.
For tasty, charbroiled-to-perfection chicken with Peruvian flavors in a warm, family friendly environment, local diners flock to Lima’s Chicken. Specializing in rotisserie chicken, Lima’s seasons its poultry with a secret recipe and allows it to marinate for a few hours for perfect flavor. All chicken is available quarter-sized, half-sized or whole, and served with potato and salad. A range of salads, sandwiches, tacos and burritos are also available alongside a number of Peruvian specialty dishes such as its bistec a lo pobre,a tender steak served with plantains, fried eggs and a side of rice and fries, or the fresh fish and shrimp ceviche with sweet potatoes and Peruvian corn.
Combining delicious American fare with distinct Cajun and Creole flavors and some of the best live jazz and old-school R&B in the Washington DC metropolitan area, Half Note Lounge opened in Bowie in 2007 and its laid back, good-time vibe makes it perfect for a fun evening with friends. Dine on soul food-inspired dishes, such as the tempting sautéed jumbo shrimp and Southern-style grits with Andouille sausage, cornbread and a Cajun tomato sauce or the Southern fried chicken with mac ‘n’ cheese and collard greens, all while listening to the sounds of live acts. Previous performers include jazz saxophonist Brian Lenair and blues outfit the Linwood Taylor Band.
Located on the outskirts of Bowie in a charming, rustic property, Rip’s Country Inn has been a local dining mainstay since first opening its doors over 60 years ago in 1952. Inside, the family owned and operated restaurant is a homage to Bowie’s horse-racing heritage, with comfy booths designed to look like stables and named after famous racing horses, while a covered wood patio is perfect for al fresco dining in warmer months. Classic American favorites dominate Rip’s menu, with standout dishes including liver and caramelized onions with green beans and homemade mash potatoes and Maryland country-style fried chicken with mac ‘n’ cheese.
Old Bowie Town Grille is a must-visit destination. Locally owned and operated, the Old Town Bowie Grille is a welcoming neighborhood joint serving healthy, contemporary fare alongside a good range of beers, wines and spirits. Menu highlights include items like slow-cooked BBQ baby back ribs and Southwest-style chicken topped with Jack cheese, shredded cheddar, diced tomatoes, scallions and BBQ sauce.
An ideal destination for any diners with a sweet tooth, Simple Pleasures Ice Café is an old-fashioned ice cream parlor serving its own brand of delicious house-made ice creams, cakes, cookies and pastries, all prepared on-site under the supervision of owners Rodney and Terri Russell, who learned the art of ice cream making while living in Europe. A charmingly quaint interior sets the scene in which to enjoy Simple Pleasures’ wide range of homemade ice creams, sundaes, splits and milkshakes, all available in unique flavors such as banana pudding, lemon ginger snap and toasted honey almond.
A smart and stylish restaurant, Ichiban Sushi Asian Bistro serves an authentic menu of Asian eats and sushi built around classic recipes with a contemporary twist. Ichiban’s newly redesigned interior includes a full-wall waterfall feature, a beautiful granite bar and stylish dark-wood tables, while its imaginative menu features dishes such as the spicy Sichuan chicken dumpling appetizer with a peppery garlic sauce and its miso-glazed sea bass with baby bok choy, string beans and onion tempura. Sushi fans will enjoy Ichiban’s huge range of options, with red clam, eel and baby octopus.
Based in the small, neighboring community of Crofton, Allison’ Restaurant is a fine-dining establishment with an approachable, casual ambiance. The menu consists of simple, yet elegant, New American fare with distinct Italian flavors with mouth-watering, must-try dishes that include the fettuccine aurora with lump-crab meat, shrimp, spinach and artichokes in a pink sauce and the grilled Italian sausage served with roasted potatoes, grilled peppers, onions and asparagus. A comprehensive wine list and select few draft beers are available to complement your meal.