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Party Size
For 2
Date
Today
Time
7:00 PM

The Diving Horse

4.4
590 reviews
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$31 to $50
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Farm-to-table
Perfect For:
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Neighborhood Gem
  • Great for Outdoor Dining
The Diving Horse is a bustling BYO restaurant located at 21st & Dune Drive in Avalon, New Jersey. We serve inspired local, organic, and seasonal fare focusing on farms and fisherman from South Jersey and stretching to Lancaster, PA. The Diving Horse has received many honors since opening, including being named Philadelphia Magazine’s “Best Shore Hot Spot”, as well receiving the OpenTable “Diner’s Choice” award. Dinner reservations are highly recommended for indoor dining, however we also have first come first serve availability at our community tables located outside on the deck.
Dining Style
Casual Elegant
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Cuisines
Farm-to-table, Seafood
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Hours of operation
Daily
5:00pm - 10:00pm
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Phone number
(609) 368-5000
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Payment options
Cash Only
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Dress code
Smart Casual
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Neighborhood
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Cross street
21st & Dune Drive
Additional
Chef's Table, Outdoor dining
What 590 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.4based on all time ratings
4.5
food
4.5
service
4.2
ambience
3.9
value
Noise · Moderate
93% of people would recommend it to a friend
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5.0Dined on September 15, 2017

All the amenities that you would expect of a higher end restaurant are present...service, ambiance, & attention to food preparation & presentation. However, their menu choices are more limited . For instance they will offer only 6 to 8 entrees . That being said, the restaurant is one of the favorites of Avalon so do make your reservation well in advance

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5.0Dined on September 8, 2017

Our entire evening was great thanks to the delicious menu and great service. The Diving Horse is just upscale enough to be special, but not at all too formal for a shore vacation area--a very welcome addition to the neighborhood. We all loved our server and our meals.

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5.0Dined on September 4, 2017

Food was delicious. We had a great jersey corn appetizer and tuna tartar also very good.

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5.0Dined on September 3, 2017

Missy and Bonnie are the best. They always make us feel special. Their service is the perfect complement to great food. Another great season!

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5.0Dined on August 27, 2017

They never disappoint at The Diving Horse - excellent meal!

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3.0Dined on August 23, 2017

While the food was very well prepared and the entrees plentiful, the place inherently felt very expensive. The appetizers were very small. One dish was called mussels and clams. It had one mussel and six or seven miniscule and I mean minuscule clams. When asked the waitress at the end of the dinner why there was only one mussel and six or seven clams, she replied they count out each muscle and each clam before they put it on the dish. That shows you how quantity conscious the restaurant must be. Service was excellent. A 10 oz steak special was offered at $58. We understand that that will be a price up at the beach but there are many far superior choices. When you only offer 6 appetizer choices and 6 entrees at this price point, it is hard to not feel that this is a very very expensive experience unless you are on someone else's business account. Unfortunately for us it was once and done. The corn appetizer was a major hit and was incredibly tasteful. A tuna appetizer was quite good also. Quality yes service yes overpriced yes

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5.0Dined on August 21, 2017

Our first visit to Avalon for a 3 night stay. This was one of the three places I selected for dining after much research on line with my husband. WE loved it. Our waiter was excellent; extremely attentive but NOT overbearing.(AND, he did not come up and say " My name is_____ and I'll be your server this evening"...so I don't even now his name!! Ambiance so lovely and serene. The food was divine...I drooled over the tilefish which one rarely finds on a menu and my husband devoured the short ribs. We split a tomato salad which was outstanding...just picked tomatoes with real taste. Definitely will be back...just have to get to Avalon first!! Thank you for a wonderful dining experience.

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5.0Dined on August 18, 2017

Excellent farm to table. Delicious food served in a cool space with great service. Doesn't get much better.

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4.0Dined on August 17, 2017

A little noisy, but food and service were excellent.

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3.0Dined on August 17, 2017

Food excellent! Noise level not tolerable. This venue is not equipped to handle large parties....there were two parties of twelve that night. Awful. I could not carry on a conversation with my party.
Next time I will reserve only if large parties are not scheduled that evening.

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5.0Dined on August 17, 2017

Great food very patient with grandkids

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5.0Dined on August 13, 2017

Top drawer in every respect. Needs liquor license.

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5.0Dined on August 11, 2017

We've gone to Diving Horse every summer since it opened, even after relocating to the West Coast. The Jersey Shore is just a part of who we are growing up around Philadelphia, and The Diving Horse is the best restaurant around by far.

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5.0Dined on August 10, 2017

Fantastic meal. Everything we had was great. Highly recommended.

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5.0Dined on August 9, 2017

The Diving Horse is our favorite restaurant in Avalon. We always enjoy our meal and the service is top notch.

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4.0Dined on August 6, 2017

We eat here several times over the summer. Overall, meal was very good. We had one (really) bad oyster, but they overly compensated for that by not only removing them from the bill, but also comping our deserts and giving us a gift certificate for our next visit. They did the right thing and we made sure our tip reflected what the bill should have been and then some. Will be back again and would highly recommend it to anyone looking for a great dinner experience.

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5.0Dined on August 6, 2017

Awesome meal. Best I've had in Avalon in awhile. Short ribs were melt in your mouth delicious. The grilled zucchini app was very flavorful. My wife loved her halibut. BYOB like most places in Avalon.

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5.0Dined on August 6, 2017

Whenever we visit the shore we make a point to hit TDH at least once for dinner. On this occasion we were a party of eleven and I must make special mention of the attention the staff gave to enabling us to be seated together at one table. Our family ranged from a five year old to a tweener and a teenager to six adults to our two 80+ year old parents. I also cannot say enough about our server, Anna, and the team that took such good care of us. Anything we needed was addressed and Anna's patience and understanding throughout our visit was so appreciated. As always, the food was delicious and there were many experiences at the table from old standbys like the wedge and the mussels and clam stew to new tries like the tuna tartare, pork rillettes, the halibut (subbing for the fluke on the night of our visit), the tuna entree and the zucchini appetizer. The only disappointment was the usually awesome tilefish; it was nicely prepared but, for our tastes (two of tried it), the flavors in the sauce way overpowered the delicate nature of this fish. Everyone loved their desserts, the beignets were a big hit and the panna cotta, mousse and ripple ice cream were much enjoyed. We have been here many times but I cannot express my thanks enough to the whole staff, especially Anna, for making our night such a pleasant and enjoyable experience!

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4.0Dined on August 6, 2017

Very good experience. Service was very solid, as was the food. Quite costly, but when factoring in the fact that t is a BYOB, so you don't get clobbered with drink prices...too too too costly. If you want one nice meal while on vacation for a week or two...this is one of the places I'd suggest.

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4.0Dined on August 4, 2017

A nice place to dine but it would be great if they put in some kind of sound barrier material on their ceiling or walls... otherwise it was a pleasant experience with friendly, knowledgeable wait staff and great food.

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4.0Dined on August 3, 2017

Food was absolutely excellent - great taste combinations, very well prepared, well presented. We both had salads - fresh green salad & a crab wedge. Tilefish and tuna for dinner- both excellent. Service very attentive and appropriate. The only complaint is the noise level - even when the server asked if we wanted to see a desert menu & I said "sure," he didn't hear me correctly & gave me the check!

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2.0Dined on August 3, 2017

Average at best, sub par service and food

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5.0Dined on August 2, 2017

Heard about it for years and this year we got to it. Dinner selection was not large but everyones meal was outstanding. The appetizers were amazing as well. Great place with a pleasant atmosphere for fine dining at the shore!

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4.0Dined on July 29, 2017

I love the Diving Horse look forward to eating there a few times each season. Disappointing that it is not open year round. Can be difficult to get a reservation and if you have an early seating(before 6pm), you may rushed through your meal.

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1.0Dined on July 28, 2017

JUST DO NOT GO. THE ONLY THING POSITIVE ABOUT THE DIVING HORSE IS THE SERVICE. THE FOOD WAS EXPENSIVE AND TERRIBLE...don't waste your money...go to the whitebrier

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4.0Dined on July 25, 2017

Just an all around good experience! Nice atmosphere, good food and we love BYOB.
We will definitely recommend this restaurant.

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4.0Dined on July 25, 2017

It was expensive but everything was exceptional; the service, food, and atmosphere.

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4.0Dined on July 23, 2017

Great meal, service and atmosphere!

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3.0Dined on July 20, 2017

It seems the horse it getting a bit waterlogged. Service was acceptable, but the food was only so so. Also, the noise level is getting painful. There's better spots on the island to get a good dinner at a good price.

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4.0Dined on July 20, 2017

Prices are high but that's true most places in Avalon and Stone Harbor. BYOB so that helps! Zucchini app and fries were amazing and pork was good, but other dishes were nothing to brag about (lentils were tasteless, brussels sprouts were good but very greasy, fish was a bit dry).

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4.0Dined on July 19, 2017

My daughter and I had a wonderful meal at the Diving Horse. She had the sirloin and I had the scallops. Each dish was expertly prepared. The tuna tartare we had for an appetizer was amazing. Lastly, the KitKat dessert was scrumptious. I would highly recommend any or all of these dishes.

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5.0Dined on July 18, 2017

All dishes excellent. Tuna tartare and the signature desserts are standouts.

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5.0Dined on July 18, 2017

Our favorite summer night is spent at the Diving Horse. Excellent execution of each dish , a succinct menu and friendly, knowledgeable servers make this a must-do dining spot. The menu changes, but the scallops, fluke and short ribs are perfect in every way! Superb broths combined with veggies or grains excellent. Local ingredients used throughout the menu.

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5.0Dined on July 15, 2017

Excellent food with a real flare. Loved the combinations and flavors. Everything was prepared wonderfully. The atmosphere was very inviting. A rustic/ industrial flair with a warm and cozy feel. Loved it! Love 7 mile island!!

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5.0Dined on July 14, 2017

Excellent, a real find at the shore. Unique and delicious entrees. Great Service

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5.0Dined on July 13, 2017

Best meal on South Jersey Shore!

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5.0Dined on July 13, 2017

Everything was fabulous and can't wait to go back!!

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5.0Dined on July 12, 2017

We have dined here several times and have never been disappointed . My fav is the diving horse wedge salad! Order it every time. My husband always tries a different starter and is always thrilled! Whether you order fish or short ribs you will always be pleased! Being a byob is an added bonus!

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4.0Dined on July 9, 2017

Zucchini appetizer and fluke entree were fantastic!

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5.0Dined on July 7, 2017

Date night will never be the same! There is something about this place that is a little magical. Securing a reservation is the first miracle! Followed by a lovely modern decor, top notch service, amazing menu featuring locally sourced ingredients and the best people watching in Avalon. I relished every bite of each delicious dish. Highlights were the wedge salad with lump crabmeat, NJ fluke, fried Brussels sprouts and boardwalk fries. Oh and the Barnegat Light scallops. And the Cape Cod clams and mussels. Actually the whole meal was a highlight reel.... downsides would only be crowded seating, energetic noise level and high cost - but as they say you get what you pay for. Go if you can.

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