Spahr’s dishes up fresh area seafood

Three silent films, with live music
January 2, 2013
SportsNet Top 10 of 2012
January 3, 2013
Three silent films, with live music
January 2, 2013
SportsNet Top 10 of 2012
January 3, 2013

“Let’s go seafood,” a guest suggested when we were discussing restaurant choices for this month’s review.

The Tri-parishes has an abundance of fresh seafood joints, for certain. But one in particular caught our attention: Spahr’s Seafood.

With three locations to choose from – including one on Tunnel Boulevard in Houma and a second on Fourth Street in Thibodaux – we opted to visit the original, the Spahr’s Seafood Restaurant on U.S. Highway 90 in Des Allemands. It was in that small fishing community, in 1968, that Bill Spahr opened. Spahr has since turned over control to family and friends, but his proud tradition of offering some of the freshest local seafood and genuine, down-home southern hospitality continues.

On this particular Friday night, the place is packed with friends and families still in the holiday spirit sharing conversation and great food. The staff gives us a friendly greeting at the door and promptly leads us to a table. The dining area, situated to the right of the bar, offers guests plenty of swinging room and a great view of Bayou Des Allemands, which runs behind the establishment.

We immediately agree we have to test Spahr’s contention that it serves the “World’s Famous Bloody Marys.” It’s a proud statement; given that Frank’s Lounge just up the road makes a similar promise.

“What makes yours world famous?” I ask our waitress Angel.

“Well, we serve a lot of them,” she replies.

The Bloody Marys are indeed good. Made from scratch, the drink has a perfect combination of Worcestershire, lemon and hot sauce, even if it skimps on the accouterments. It includes a celery stalk, squeeze of lemon and a couple of olives. I tend to enjoy a salad in my beverage.

But the food is the real star at Spahr’s.

After a lot of haggling, my guests and I agree to try the Onion Sticks ($7.99) and stuffed mushrooms ($7.99) to start the meal.

A departure from the traditional onion mum, Spahr’s Onion Sticks are separated from the bloom, making it easier to share around the table. You don’t have to worry about the coating falling away, leaving a limp onion behind as you try to wrangle it from the platter. And the remoulade-style sauce makes a perfect dip. The mayo-based sauce has just the right kick.

The fried mushrooms are stuffed with a crab dressing and provide a sampling of the flavors to come.

It’s worth noting that Spahr’s has a diverse selection of appetizers. The Bayou Blazin’ Shrimp, Crab Fingers and Crabcake Minis were served to a nearby table, prompting one of my guests to suggest a meal of appetizers only on a future visit.

As an entrée, one of my guests settles on the Seafood Gumbo ($4.99). Loaded with shrimp, chicken and Andouille sausage, as well as vegetables, the earthy brew is an immediate hit. Spahr’s gumbo stands up to even the most discriminate Cajun taste buds.

Spahr’s Shrimp Remoulade Salad ($11.99) also earns two thumbs up. Fried shrimp circle the platter of lettuces. The dish is topped with two fried Creole tomatoes and remoulade sauce. Fried red tomatoes, versus the more familiar green tomatoes, were a first for my guest. She reported that it added pleasant sweet taste to each bite.

It’s worth noting that Spahr’s fried dishes are prepared in the same oil as the seafood. That makes it a challenge if you have a yen for fried chicken tenders or sweet potato fries. Those with allergies aren’t forgotten, however. The menu includes Blackened Chicken Pasta ($14.99), burgers and Hamburger Steak ($11.99).

I settle on the latter and am surprised when a thick medium-well ribeye is delivered to my table. Sadly, it’s covered with grilled shrimp so it has to go back. The Hamburger Steak consists of a platter-size, somewhat-forgettable hamburger patty. The real star of the dish is the brown gravy and grilled onions covering the meat. Blended with the accompanying baked potato, it proves quite flavorful.

By night’s end, we’re too full for dessert but agree we’ll forgo appetizers next time to squeeze in the Peanut Butter Pie with Chocolate Sauce or Bread Pudding with Rum Sauce. Spahr’s ample serving sizes definitely include enough food for a second meal, so we all leave with go-boxes.

It’s worth noting, previous visits to Spahr’s in Houma with my picky eater have earned the Overstuffed Popcorn Shrimp po-boy and the restaurant’s Original Catfish Chips – a platter of coin-shaped fried catfish – very high marks.

Spahr’s locations are ideal stops for friends and family to gather or business meals. If it’s fresh seafood you want, you’ll definitely leave satisfied.

Known for dishes like Seafood Angel Pasta, their Original Catfish Chips and a number of fresh seafood dishes, Spahr’s Seafood has been serving south Louisiana since 1968. Abundant meals and genuine southern hospitality set it apart.




$4.99 (cup)