Sunday, May 24, 2009

Lunch In Wanchese.

After the sand-breaking ceremony, our little group headed down to Wanchese for lunch at Fisherman's Wharf Restaurant, quite a popular restaurant in these parts. Mr. Hawthorne and I had eaten there once, 25 or so years ago, after which we've always referred to it as Fisherman's Barf. (I'm sorry. I can be quite caustic at times. Maybe we just ordered the wrong thing or maybe they just had a bad day. Whatever, we never went back. Until I went back Friday since I was with another party that was driving and deciding where to eat.) But I was willing to give it a second chance. I'm nothing if not all about second chances. (What was I supposed to do? Get out and thumb the 18 miles back to Colington?) But first, pictures of picturesque Wanchese Harbor:
I really liked this shot of the buoys. And speaking of buoys, if I never go into another restaurant down here that has the bathrooms cutesy and beachy marked as "Buoys" and "Gulls" it'll be too soon.
Welcome to Fisherman's Wharf.
View of Wanchese harbor from Fisherman's Wharf.
Mr. Xmaskatie ordered the crab soup ... which I wished I had ordered. Xmaskatie had some of it and said it was very good, creamy with a hint of sherry. Her only complaint was that the crabmeat should have been lump, not the little picked pieces. The couple next to us had a scallop soup ... which I wished I had ordered. It looked delicious.
I ordered the house salad which came with red onion slices, cucumber slices, and cherry tomatoes. It was all iceberg lettuce, so not much taste there. My blue cheese dressing had nary a chunk of blue cheese in it. My salad ... meh. Oh ... no croutons. And you know how I love my croutons. If you can't give me croutons then throw in some damn Captain's Wafers. Saltines. Melba toast. Gimme sumpin!
I ordered the fried oysters which came with a side of french fries and coleslaw. The oysters were extra greasy, not at all crispy, and limp and flaccid (Happens when the oil isn't hot enough or when you crowd too many oysters in the pot, hence dropping the temperature of the oil.), and most importantly, had an "off" taste, as in almost bad. I was going to say they were the worst fried oysters I've ever had, but then I remembered I have had worse. Years ago, Mr. H. and I ate at Dirty Dick's Crab House. Mr. Hawthorne ordered fried oysters and I ordered the spinach salad with Balsamic vinegar dressing and the Balsamic vinegar was so overpowering it rendered the salad inedible. Mr. Hawthorne ate an oyster then speared another one and offered it to me. As I bit down on the oyster, he then volunteered this bit of telling information: "See if that oyster tastes right to you." Now if anyone ever, EVER, offers you an oyster and asks you to see if it tastes right, DO NOT, I REPEAT, DO NOT take them up on their offer. The oyster was simply Godawful and I actually did a "phphphphshshsttttoooot" and an "ahxxxxxxchsht" as I violently expelled the unsavory, loathsome mollusk from my oh-so-offended tastebuds and ever-so-delicate palate. Then I vigorously scrubbed my tongue with my napkin a la Tom Hanks in BIG when he had his first taste of caviar. "No, Mr. Hawthorne. Indeed, the oyster does not not taste right at all." The waitress finally came back to our table and Mr. Hawthorne told her the oysters were bad and sent them back. She returned to our table minutes later to inform us that the "chef" said nothing was wrong with the oysters. What, did he actually eat the oysters off Mr. H.'s plate and proclaim them OK? I think not. I have had the misfortune over the years of putting several bad oysters in my mouth. Sometimes you just don't know it until it's too late. I know a bad oyster when I taste one and so does Mr. Hawthorne. Won't be going back to Dirty Dick's ever again. And by the way, they're moving into what used to be Slammin' Sammy's old place. And moreover, what is it with all the alliteration in restaurant names on the Outer Banks? We have Awful Arthur's, (Is it alliteration when the words start with vowels?) Bad Barracuda, Barefoot Bernie's, Coastal Cactus, Dirty Dick's, Flying Fish, Mako Mike's, Slammin' Sammy's, and probably some others I can't think of now. Although Dirty Dick's is the most egregious example among these alliteratively-named restaurants. Sometimes you really can tell a book by it's cover, or in this case, an offensive restaurant by its name. Back to the Wharf:
The french fries weren't bad, but weren't exceptional either (I had, as always, requested extra crispy, and these did not deliver.) and the cole slaw was tasteless. But Xmaskatie's potato chips, which she thoughtfully shared with me, were very good. And I thank you, Xmaskatie, else I would have been too weak to make it through Harry Tits (Harris Teeter) with you later. As we went through HT, Xmaskatie said she was so glad I could go through there and eat the offerings in the deli area for sustenance since I was still starving. Back to Fisherman's Wharf: Xmaskatie and Glowria had the mahi mahi sandwich, which Xmaskatie described as "kind of dry and not having much flavor. I could have done this much better." However, that being said, the service was excellent and the owner actually stopped by our table to chat and see where we were from. (This was during my salad so I wasn't able to tell him about the oysters.) When our waitress came back to clean off our table, she noticed I hadn't touched the oysters and asked if they were OK. "No, they weren't. They were very greasy and had an 'off' taste to them." She apologized for that and when she brought the bill, she hadn't charged me for the oysters. Thank you very much. Now, these are all my personal opinions of course, so they really don't mean crap. But, if you decide, on your vacation or whatever, to go to Fisherman's Wharf, don't bother with the salad. I can fix iceberg lettuce all day long. It's mediocre. But do try the Scallop Soup or the Crab Soup. Even though I didn't eat them, they looked really good, and both Xmaskatie and Mr. Xmaskatie liked the Crab Soup. And you might want to look around at neighboring customers to check out what they ordered and see if it appeals to you.


Marilyn said...

I hate going out to eat and then figuring out that I could have done a much better job with the food for much less money. So disappointing.

Anonymous said...

I was really hoping this was going to be a fantastic lunch, since the service was so good, and the view is fantastic. Too bad.