Monday, March 22, 2010


Port Aransas has several good restaurants and of course, we like to eat fresh seafood whenever possible when we are visiting there.

The outstanding meal and service award goes to Caroline at the Pelican's Landing restaurant. Expensive and well worth it. Lobster, Red Snapper, some sort of sauteed shrimp dish and El Fisho Jr.'s chicken strips were great. The food was absolutely worth it's expensive price and the service, with a visiting Texas State University student as a waitress, couldn't have been better. In fact, the service was at a new level for our recent restaurant trips. Service was absolutely excellent even though the place was jumping and packed with large groups. Highly recommended with a Five out of Five stars. Caroline the waitress got a great tip has a great work ethic.

The Crazy Cajun didn't happen for us. The portions were small and my red beans and rice had teeny tiny pieces of sausage in it, and very few of those at that. The waiter acted like I was asking for fresh goat milk when I asked him for some brown suger to put in the red beans and rice, as that's the way it's always been served to me in fine dining restaurants in NOLA. The service was bad even though they were not that busy. Their specialty seemed to be steamed snow crab legs/boiled shrimp/potatos/corn/crawfish bowls heaped on the table and the folks having that seemed to be jamming down. There's a similar place in Rockport called something else where the portions are much, much larger. Although their blurb in the local tourist paper said they had stone crab, they did not. Three stars for the seafood steamed platter, one star for the red beans and rice because the bean part was tasty, and no stars for the service. It is on the high end of moderately priced in my book. Many customers were having to approach the kitchen area to get refills on their drinks because the waiters were disappearing or just not paying any attention at all to their tables. They were busy, but there were plenty of waiters and a manager.

Kody's seafood got three stars. The bar had a full complement of late 50's to 70's lunchtime drinkers in attendance, and you had to order your food at the bar. The restaurant was clean, and there was a putt-putt course out front for $4 a person. It was a very rudimentary course but kids who had never played might like it and find it interesting. They were out of certain items, but it was spring break. My fried shrimp were okay, but nothing to write home about. I've had better fried shrimp at Red Lobster and bigger portions and smaller prices. It was moderately priced, about $10 to $15 per entree. It gets three stars because the service was pretty good but the food was just OK.

I give Four Stars to Oceans of Seafood, who make excellent fried shrimp and oyster po-boys. Very reasonably priced, well cooked, large portions and fresh ingredients make them a winner consistently for us. They do great fried shrimp. In fact, if you are gonna have fried shrimp in Port A, this is the place to have it. Golden fried, tender, fresh and tasty. They have lots of other good menu items too. We ate lunch there one day, and went back Saturday night at 8 p.m. only to find them closing. For the money, the best seafood joint on the island. The fish are better at Pelican's Landing, but if other seafood is your fare, you won't go wrong with Oceans of Seafood, although watch out for the table with the sticky tablecloth in the back.

The Port A Pizzaria is not going to win any prizes for a great pizza, but it was good pizza and of Domino's or Pizza Inn/Hut quality. Not a class A pie but in the B-C range. The salad bar was extra fresh and indeed, I was impressed that everything was fresh and they did have a fair selection of pizza, although it could have been better. Except for the supreme pizza, the pepperoni and the meats on the other pizza pies were a bit scanty.

The Port A Pizzaria COULD be a excellent world class pizza joint and charge more money and deliver a higher end product. I think back to the days of Panjo's Pizza in the 1970's in Houston or Mario's Flying Pizza in Seabrook on 146 at Nasa 1 when I think of GREAT restaurant pizza.

I'll give it three and a half stars for value and family atmosphere and good (but not great) pizza, an ice cream machine, and a great salad bar with A+ fresh produce but middling service. They were busy but had plenty of waitresses, and the drink refills were a bit slow, as was plate clearing. You could see that the owner or manager was trying really hard as was some of the staff, but there was slacking going on with the staff and it wasn't running like a well oiled machine. I had to chase the waitress down to get a ticket because she just wouldn't look at our table after bringing our food.

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