Took a fishing “head” boat out of Calabash today and my plan was to have lunch at Coleman’s “Original” Calabash Seafood. Earlier in the week we stopped there and a sign in the window declared they were only open from Thursday through Saturday. Discovered today they are not open for the lunch trade.
So, next door was Captain Nance’s Calabash Seafood and their parking lot was full and they were obviously interested in my food dollar. The Captain’s will be the third Calabash seafood joint I’ve eaten and the old adage, “third time’s a charm,” came true. Here’s the scoop on Nance’s.
First, the service was very fast and very friendly. Secondly, the hush puppies and sweet tea were on the table in a flash. The hush puppies were top shelf; fresh, hot, sweet and nice and crispy. The sweet tea was just what one would expect South of the Mason-Dixie, freshly brewed and enough sugar to keep your dentist employed.
My lunch consisted of adequate portions of fried shrimp and clam strips. Both were sweet, mild, tender, lightly battered and fried to perfection. The superb quality was certainly related to being able to look out the restaurant window and see the very boat the shrimp came in on and the mud flat the clams had until recently called home. I’ve never had better clams strips and it’s probably because I’ve never had fresh clam strips.
In true Southern style, the slaw was vinegar based and the acidity complemented and offset the sweetness of the seafood and hush puppies. I tasted something different, but good, in the slaw but couldn’t identify it. Should have ask but it slipped my mind.
The French fries were the one negative. They were simply run of the mill frozen sticks that are the stock in trade of American restaurants. Does anyone still slice, blanch, and fry potatoes?
Like I said earlier, and related to the cashier on the way out, it took three swings at Calabash before getting a plate of food worthy of a smile.
CAPTAIN NANCE’S MENU