Old McDonald Fish Camp Seafood Restaurant
North Augusta, South Carolina
For those of us who grew up near Augusta, Georgia, a trip out to Old McDonald Fish Camp is always a treat. My family has enjoyed going for years–we pick up my Grandma on the way, and head out to the country for some grits and hushpuppies, hoping to get there before the waiting room fills up. We usually visit on a Friday or Saturday night, but recently, I realized we’d been doing it all wrong! Thursday night is Crab Leg Night and the only night of the week my favorite crustaceans make an appearance.
For just $20, you get 1 and 1/2 pounds of Canadian King Crab Legs, that’s three clusters worth. I ordered mine with a baked potato. The aforementioned hushpuppy and grits bar is complimentary with every meal, along with little paper cups filled with coleslaw.
I have never been more happy than the moment a thick piece of intact crab meat is released from its shell.
Packets of butter are available at the self-serve, all-you-can-eat grits and hushpuppy bar, and tin pails containing salt & pepper, ketchup and everything you need sit atop the blue and white checkered tablecloths. Sweet tea is served in mason jars.
Other menu items like boiled shrimp, Lowcountry Boil, Po’ Boys and lots of fried seafood selections are always available. My grandma just LOVES the catfish! The restaurant offers wild game, including quail and gator too.
In true country fashion, the wait staff wear blue jean overalls and tie-dyed t-shirts. The restaurant is decorated with farm equipment and stuffed peacocks, open floor plan style, and surrounded by large picture windows providing all the diners with a pond view. What’s better than eating a mound of succulent crab legs on the water? Outside, goats and baby goats, ducks and chickens roam around the fenced-in area. You can even feed the farm animals! I especially love the cats.
Family owned and operated since 1977, the restaurant began with an original seating capacity of 95 and now seats over 250. I love what owner Jay Bass says on the history of the place: “Old McDonald Fish Camp is truly a family business. My parents were the backbone. Daddy had the dream, and Mama had the recipes. The hushpuppies, tartar sauce, cocktail sauce, and iced tea were all created in our family kitchen.”
This is a place you’re sure to receive Southern hospitality, be fed well and entertained. Make it a weekend destination or a Thursday night on the town–whenever you choose to go, you’ll be glad you did.
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Georgia native Rebekah Faulk Lingenfelser is a freelance writer, entertainer and food enthusiast who writes and speaks about her love of good food and the Coastal South. A Season 2 Contestant on ABC TV’s “The Taste,” she is the former Statesboro Herald food columnist and past host of the program “Statesboro Cooks.” Lingenfelser is a student at the award-winning Culinary Institute of Savannah. To learn more, visit RebekahFaulk.wix.com/RebekahFaulk or connect with Rebekah on social media by following Some Kinda Good on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.