Memorable | One of the Best
Wintzell’s Oyster House
Review by: Roadfood Team
Wintzell’s Oyster House is like seafood heaven
Like its more famous sister restaurant in Mobile, this location serves big platters of fresh and fried seafood, with West Indies Salad on the side.
Wintzell’s Oyster House is a landmark on Dauphin Street in Mobile, AL and is best known for its oysters “fried, stewed or nude.” The original location was opened in 1938 as a six-stool oyster bar by J. Oliver Wintzell (1905 – 1980). There are now five company-owned locations; the one in Guntersville is the first franchise location.
The franchisee has spared no expense in designing a unique dining experience right on Lake Guntersville. Whether you arrive by automobile or by boat, there are plenty of parking spaces and boat slips. Diners have their choice of seating (booth or table) and, in season, the screened-in deck is open, complete with a full bar.
What should I eat at Wintzell’s Oyster House?
We arrived at about 3:00 pm and were offered the choice of ordering from the lunch or dinner menu. We decided to order an appetizer and think about it. We tried a dozen oysters “nude” the fried green tomatoes with crawfish sauce. The tomatoes were freshly hand-breaded and fried to perfection. The sauce was a taste sensation with a unique blend of crawfish, shrimp, and mushrooms in a light sauce.
As for the oysters, what can we say? They had arrived at the restaurant earlier that morning and were as fresh as could be, and of good size. These oysters were absolutely great, and were served with horseradish and lemon. We started to request Tabasco sauce, but instead chose to try Wintzell’s Shuck’n n Jive’n house-brand hot sauce from the table. After tasting the hot sauce we elected to go with it. It had enough bite to wake up the taste buds, with a great lingering flavor that really enhanced the nude oysters.
After seeing how large the appetizers are, we decided to order from the lunch menu. We ordered the #3 plate: fried catfish filets (three pieces), fried oysters (four pieces), and fried shrimp (three pieces), along with hush puppies, French fries, and slaw. We also decided to give the #4 plate with fried oysters (four pieces) and fried shrimp (three pieces) along with red-skin potatoes and slaw a try
Our meal was nothing short of seafood heaven. The catfish was lightly breaded and fried just right; the oysters and shrimp were breaded and cooked following a 70-year-old recipe. The fries were OK, nothing out of the ordinary, and the slaw was a fairly good mayo-based version. The red-skin potatoes were not as good as they probably were early in the lunch hour, but not bad enough to gripe about.
Since it was Valentine’s Day, we ordered the Chocolate Loving Spoon Cake with ice cream. Oh, it was so good: moist, creamy, and enough for two people to share. Don’t miss this one.
We had a great chat with the General Manager, Wes Nutbrown. Turns out he is from Florence and had been the Kitchen Manager for the local O’Charlie’s a few years ago. After we ate, he gave me a guided tour of the place and said that all Roadfood roadies should look him up when they come in.
*Original Post By Dave R.*
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