Memorable | One of the Best
Skipper’s Fish Camp
Review by: Michael Stern
Skipper’s Fish Camp, overlooking the Darien River and the Altamaha Bio Reserve, is a well-mannered restaurant decorated with nautical curios including an 11-foot stuffed alligator but with none of the haphazard chaos typical of a working fish camp. It still has a boat launch next door, dating back to the days fishermen brought their shrimp straight to the restaurant kitchen. During lunch, I watched one old boy haul in his skiff and sort through a cooler that included the morning’s stripers as well as the few cans of beer he had not yet drunk. If you trailer a boat to this dock and plan to go fishing, you must bring your own bait, for instead of a tackle shop, Skipper’s is adjoined by a prestigious waterside condominium development where no worms are sold.
The grand meal is crisp-fried flounder, a fish so big it hangs over both sides of a dinner plate. The plateau of meat below its craggy orange-gold crust is moist and sweet, easy to lift in bite-size nuggets right off the skeleton. Fried shrimp are firm and fresh, accompanied by red-crusted hushpuppies in which the cornmeal is infused with a throbbing swirl of sweetness and garlic. Compared to the muscular shrimp, fried oysters are shockingly fragile, so tender that they seem to evaporate on the tongue. Excellent side dishes include brown-sugary sweet potato casserole and bowls of bright and bitter greens.
The essential dessert is Georgia peach cobbler, a double whammy of fruity sweetness and buttery crust. It is served hot, and of course you want a globe of vanilla ice cream melting on top.
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