New Seafood Restaurant Brings “The Whole Nine Yards” to the ‘Boro

Image courtesy of
Image courtesy of

The Boiling Shrimp
Statesboro, Georgia

The earliest known use of the American phrase, “The Whole Nine Yards,” an expression meaning “all of it, the full measure,” dates back to 1907 in Southern Indiana, but for one new Statesboro seafood restaurant, the term is a business model by which everything from the food to the service is based around. The Boiling Shrimp opened just over three months ago on U.S. 301 South with a mission to make seafood work in Statesboro punctuated by an unconventional, Asian-influenced approach. After visiting for dinner recently, I caught up with Assistant Manager Adam Tsang to get the details on this restaurant’s unique spin on presentation, flavor and entertainment.

wpid-0620142058a.jpgTwo things that caught my attention immediately: 1) Customers place their order in a 3-step sequence and 2) Food ordered Low Country boil style, is presented in a clear, plastic bag. First, you choose your catch, next your flavor and lastly, determine how you’d like it prepared. “We found that if we served the food directly on the plate, the sauces and seasonings don’t stay on as well,” said Adam. On my visit, I ordered a 1/2 pound of boiled shrimp with Cajun sauce for $8 and washed it all down with a cold Blue Moon. Currently, the restaurant serves beer with future plans to offer wine.

wpid-0620142059.jpgOnce I got over the shock factor of the plastic bag on my plate,  I found its contents divine. The aroma of a Low Country boil hit me as soon as I untied the bag, and the size of the plump, succulent shrimp alongside a half ear of deliciously seasoned corn on the cob and juicy sausage was all I needed to feel right in my element. Fresh, good quality seafood in the coastal plains of Georgia? What more could one want?

Menu items also include soups, salads and po’ boy sandwiches. Adam says the Fried Shrimp Basket is one of their most popular dishes. So, just where does the Asian influence come in to play? Owned by longtime Statesboro residents Charles and Jean Hsu, the Taiwanese Americans created their sauces –your choice of chili pepper, lemon pepper, Cajun or garlic — based on influences from their travels and previous restaurant experiences. “The Whole Nine Yards” is both a sauce (a combination of all of the above) and a dish on the menu. Asian influences can be found in the tempura fry style and preparation of the batter.

With an open floor plan, the casual atmosphere feels like you’re dining on the coast, as if you could walk outside and be on the beach. Oars and ship wheels fill the walls, along with flat screen TVs. The restaurant is open for lunch and dinner Sunday – Thursday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., and Friday – Saturday until 11 p.m. Live music is offered during lunch Sunday – Thursday. “We’re tapping into local musicians,” Adam said. “Right now, we’re featuring light jazz with Andrew Brantley who plays with The Orange Constant band. They’re really good.”

wpid-0620142058.jpgSeafood restaurants in Statesboro don’t have the best track record. Carry Hilliard’s Restaurant closed after just two years and The Shell House, what is now The Mill House, didn’t survive the college town either. Adam says, at The Boiling Shrimp, they’ve learned from the mistakes restaurants who’ve gone before them have made. With more than 700 Facebook “Likes” and a lot of positive buzz surrounding them, they’re off to a great start. If you haven’t made your way over to see them yet, keep an open mind and give them a shot! If it’s good seafood you seek, you’ve come to the right place.

Related Content:
‘A Boiling Shrimp’ of Flavors in Statesboro

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Thanks for stopping by! If you like this post, you may also be interested to read about a few of the other local restaurants and bakeries I’ve reviewed. As the Statesboro Herald food columnist and a Georgia Southern University alumna, the ‘Boro is a second home to me. Be sure to like Some Kinda Good on Facebook, or follow me on Twitter to keep up with all my latest, local food discoveries.

Boiling Shrimp on Urbanspoon


Where Friendship and Fine Food Collide

The Crab Shack
Tybee Island, Georgia

I’m convinced that all I really need in this world is a lifelong friend and a pile of crab legs on the Southern seacoast. There are times when my soul feels so content, like if in that moment life were to end, I could slip from the Earth with a smile on my face. That satisfaction, that fulfillment only comes from good conversation–the kind where you can bear your soul and not be judged, paired with the taste of food so fresh it was swimming in the Atlantic only moments before it landed on your plate. My blog, Some Kinda Good is all about good food and good company, and that’s what I experienced over the weekend at The Crab Shack on Tybee Island with Jennifer, my friend of 17 years.

Located just off highway 80 as you make your way onto Tybee Island, The Crab Shack–Where the Elite Eat in Their Bare Feet–is THE destination for all things seafood. Known for their Lowcountry boil, the restaurant has been voted Best Seafood and Best Outdoor Dining since 1998.

Offering indoor and outdoor dining, there’s really no bad seat in the house. When we first arrived, we sat on the deck overlooking Chimney Creek, and later moved inside to the screened in porch area when it started to rain. Since we visited in October, the boat was decorated for Halloween. From your table, you can hear boat motors cranking up and seagulls overhead.

The menu features the Captain Crab’s Sampler where you can try an assortment of seasonal shellfish with corn, potatoes and sausage. It also offers a variety of crabs–Snow, Alaskan King, Blue, Dungeness or Stone. Not only does The Crab Shack serve seafood, but true to its Southern region, they tout “The best barbecue on the beach or anywhere else.” The sides include corn, potatoes, sausage, smashed taters and slaw.

I ordered a Landshark Lager–only fitting being on the island–with a cup of Boston Clam Chowder and the Half and Half dinner: A half pound of snow crab legs with a half pound of wild Georgia shrimp for $19. 99.  It came with corn on the cob. There are holes in the center of each table for discarding shrimp hulls and empty shells and I love being able to just toss your paper plate when you’re done. It’s casual dining on the coast, the way it should be.

This is the large deck that overlooks the creek. Age old Spanish-moss covered oak trees hang over the area, creating an ambiance where it’s impossible to be unhappy.

You can also feed live baby alligators on the premises. There are 78 to be exact! Pretty cool to see.

Once we acted like tourists and took our photo with the Croc (this made me feel like we were 12 again on a family vacation), we took our to-go cups of sweet tea and made our way out to the beach. Jennifer is the red-head on the left, and that’s me on the right.

I counted 53 pelicans fishing over the ocean that evening, watched the sunset by the lighthouse and touched down in the Atlantic one more time. We rode 80 West back home with the windows down and Southern rock on the radio, the palm trees passing in the wind.

See more pictures below from our visit to The Crab Shack–and be sure to grab a good friend and make the trip. The only time you won’t find them open is on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

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Crab Shack on Urbanspoon

New Restaurant A Hit for the Golden Isles

Island Chop House and Seafood Grill
St. Simons Island, Georgia

UPDATE 3/27/13 – Island Chop House and Seafood Grill Has Closed

It takes a lot of persuasion for my family to branch out and try a new restaurant, especially in the Golden Isles. We have our favorites, and you know how it is when you’re hungry–you want to go somewhere that’s guaranteed to be good, somewhere you know. On the Saturday night of Memorial Day weekend, we decided to take a chance on Island Chop House and Seafood Grill, a new St. Simons Island dining establishment that just opened this spring. The food was exceptional, the decor tasteful and I appreciated the fresh take on their inventive side dishes.

Call me a snob, but I typically prefer to dine in stand-alone restaurants. Located on Frederica road smack dab next to the Cleaners, there it was. Though I hadn’t expected the restaurant to be in a strip mall, it stood out among the other stores with an inviting exterior. Mom and dad waited in the car while I went in to scope out the scene. I came back with a thumbs-up, having been impressed with the clean, sophisticated decor, friendly host and desirable menu.

Upon greeting us, the hostess informed us that there’d be a 30 minute wait. It was 7:15 p.m. and we were hungry, so we weren’t thrilled about the news.  Then 10 minutes later, she led us to our table. There we sat and waited until a cheery fellow appeared from the kitchen with three tall glasses of cold water garnished with lemon wedges–a welcomed sight after a long day in the summer heat. Our waiter was as nice as could be and immediately apologized explaining that he was waiting on clean glasses, as the restaurant had been so busy that night. There was a party of 20 at the table to our left and I could see he was right. He told us about the specials for the evening, asked if we had any questions and took our drink and appetizer order.

We began with a classic southern menu item: Fried Green Tomatoes. They were lightly fried Georgia green tomatoes layered with goat cheese combined with balsamic-tossed arugula. The presentation was reminiscent of an ice cream sundae. Stacked high, garnished with strawberries and drizzled with what reminded me of chocolate syrup, the tomatoes were crispy and the balsamic dressing provided a sweet tartness with the creamy goat cheese.

As I looked the menu over,  I narrowed my decision down between the Smoked Gouda Shrimp & Grits and the Wild Coastal Shrimp. I chose the shrimp & grits for $18.95 with the mixed veggie medley: zucchini, carrots, onions and yellow squash. The dinner entrees come with 2 sides, so I also got a caesar salad. The grits were cheesy and hot, seasoned just right. The sausage was spicy and plump and the shrimp had a Cajun kick. Island Chop House and Seafood Grill offers the usual sides in addition to some pretty cool interpretations of basic carbs and vegetables with the volume turned up. Examples? Grilled Asparagus, Horseradish Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes, Sautéed Mushrooms or Blue Crab Mac-N-Cheese. Mom got the Blue Crab Mac-N-Cheese and man alive, it was Some Kinda Good y’all. It’s fried and spicy!

Maybe to maximize space, the restaurant seating is mostly tables. There is one booth in the rear of the restaurant reserved for larger parties.The restaurant is open 7 days a week from 11 a.m. – Until, with Happy Hour from 3 – 6 p.m. daily. I predict it’ll soon be a local favorite and yet another place my family visits to experience fine food on the beautiful St. Simons Island.

Have you been yet? What’d you think?

Island Chop House and Seafood Grill on Urbanspoon