Excellent | Worth a Detour
Marina Oyster Barn
Review by: Michael Stern
Perched at Rooks Marina overlooking Bayou Texar and with most tables offering a windowside view of boats coming and going, Marina Oyster Barn is a seafood lover’s dream. It is casual as can be with laid-back fish-camp ambiance and a menu of Dixie delights from gumbo and fried catfish to banana pudding.
You can have your oysters steamed and topped with cheese, Rockefeller (with spinach and mozzarella), or as Crabsters or Shrimpsters (topped with crabmeat or shrimp and cheese). Or, of course, you can have them simply steamed or raw on the half shell. The back of the menu advises that a dozen raw ones are a mere 114 calories and that “there is some evidence that certain types of seafood protect against heart disease.” We go for dozens of raw ones, well complemented by a shot of the kitchen’s horseradish-charged cocktail sauce.
Florida’s panhandle is the Deep South, so it is no surprise that a dish called Grits A-Ha-Ha is a winner: starchy grain laced with gouda cheese, shrimp, and bacon. Likewise, hushpuppies are swell, their severely crisp exterior enveloping creamy, herb-spangled insides.
Beyond the almighty oyster, a standout dish for us is jumbo grilled shrimp. A dozen of them come on a wooden skewer. They are nicely charred and modestly seasoned – firm, juicy, and fresh. The cocktail sauce is nice condiment; even better is tartar sauce, which is just-right sweet, balanced by a good pickle tang.
Key lime pie, bought elsewhere, is a no-frills classic.
|Meals Served||Lunch, Dinner|
|Credit Cards Accepted||Yes|