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Taylor's Neighborhood Restaurant
By Betty Cianci

When first entering Taylor's Neighborhood Restaurant located in the Village Square Shopping Center at Ocean Pines South Gate the feeling conveyed might be best described as "down home warmth."  The cozy ambiance of this neighborhood bistro can be attributed not only to a menu featuring many favorite dishes, but also to the décor.  The walls are adorned with interesting memorabilia such as the  Number 33 Indiana State University athletic jersey of basketball great Larry Bird and an American Flyer sled that are symbols of  the 1970s.  Another wall displays a toboggan plus skis and snowshoes.  These items stir memories and are intended to recall good times and family fun that often included typical American comfort foods. 

Craig Taylor Davis, the owner of Taylor's, notes his specialties as a wide choice of American cuisine from grilled hamburgers, sizzling steaks and baked chicken to Chesapeake style crab cakes or grilled fish ( Craig says he carries no seafood from China). He also specializes in home-made soups and a variety of salads for those looking for lighter fare. A particular menu favorite is the tomato based vegetable crab soup containing thick chunks of crab meat along with a blend of chunky garden vegetables. Taylor's features a variety of weekly specials that Craig is sure will please taste buds as well as wallets. 

Taylor's bar and dining area feature numerous large flat-screen TV's on the walls allowing patrons to view their favorite sports teams in action while sipping a favorite beverage or enjoying their entrée.  Craig proudly mentions that his bar and restaurant have been completely smoke free since May 1, 2006.

Craig says Taylor's opened on Labor Day 1999, after another restaurant operated on the same premises but had been closed for several months.  Craig decided to name his restaurant Taylor's, using his middle name and in honor of his great-grandfather. Craig went on to say that when he opened his was one of the few restaurants in the Ocean Pines area. 

Craig acknowledges the strong local support Taylor's has received.  He believes the reason for his patrons' loyalty relates to variety in the menu, a comfortable atmosphere and an outstanding staff.  He says that 60 percent of his staff have been with him for eight years, and commented that a family atmosphere flourishes between staff and patrons, exemplified on those times when customers bring gifts to one of his bartenders or wait staff. 

Craig is from Montgomery County, MD, a graduate of Magruder High School and holds a Food Service Management Degree from Indiana State University.  He has an older sister, Shauna and parents, Herm and Sara Davis, who make their home in Rockville, MD, but also have a place in Ocean Pines.   Craig and his wife Kandy live in Berlin.  They have one four year old daughter, Morgan, along with two sons, two year old Talan and Jasper, their three month old.. 

As to how he became involved in the restaurant business, Craig relates that as a teenager he worked at delicatessens and restaurants in both Montgomery County and Ocean City during the summer months.  He found enjoyment in cooking as well as the camaraderie in the kitchen and takes pleasure in all aspects of running a restaurant.  He admits it is a demanding career with long hours, not only in food preparation and service, but also in handling the administrative end of the business.

Craig says that success in operating Taylor's has been achieved in great measure due to the tremendous help and support received from his wife and parents.  They have been his constant source of strength, particularly in the early days of operation.

Promising down home comfort and good food you might consider a visit to Taylor's Neighborhood Restaurant to check out their "football specials" at the bar on Saturday and Sunday, or for a lunch or dinner outing.

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Uploaded: 12/5/2007