Unless you live under a rock or not from around here, everyone knows that Florence, Alabama is a 7 hour drive from the Gulf Coast and good Cajun seafood restaurants. Around here Catfish has always been king when anyone mentioned fish. Oh sure, there are establishments that call themselves Seafood restaurants located in Florence, like that Red Langosta, the Captains fast food, and a few others. But, most everything they serve was caught who knows when and have been in the freezer since coming off the factory ship.
Poboys Cajun Grill is an exception to the rule of seafood in these parts. Poboys Cajun Grill has a chef that was formerly at the Commander’s Palace in New Orleans where they take Cajun and Creole cooking seriously. His talents are on display with the many dishes that he prepares. While these dishes aren’t near as elaborate as those he prepared in New Orleans, they are the high-water mark in this area for Cajun cooking and seafood.
Off the Beaten Path
Located on the backside of the local industrial park, Poboys Cajun Grill is not on the “beaten path,” in fact it would almost be classified as out in the boonies. The building that houses Poboys Cajun Grill has been home to several other restaurants through the years and as the old adage goes “Many have tried, many have failed,” especially in this location. The way the building is chopped up on the inside, I sort of think it was a house to begin with. When you turn into the parking lot the first thing you will notice is that is a gravel lot so that adds some Cajun ambiance to it, all that is lacking is a bayou out back and gators wondering around in the grass.
Poboys Cajun Grill’s menu is loaded with Cajun dishes such as Gumbo’s, Red Beans & Rice, Rabbit N’ Dumplins, Alligator Etouffee, Jambalaya and Shrimp Creole, also they do different pastas with seafood. Then they do a great job with their namesake, Nawlin’s Po’boys, offering shrimp, catfish, crawfish, alligator, oyster and Cajun Sausage po’boys. Their menu also has lots of fried, grilled, blackened, boiled and various and sundry other dishes.
Our Visit to PoBoys Cajun Grill
When we visited recently, Debra ordered the fried oyster plate ($15.95) and I ordered the fried shrimp plate ($13.95), both of us got the fries and coleslaw as our sides. It didn’t take long for our server to bring out our plates and they did look great. Each plate had an ample serving of fries, about four ounce serving of coleslaw and two hushpuppies.
Our plates only had eight pieces of seafood (shrimp or oysters) on the them, we were a little disappointed with this small portion, since we were expecting a bit more. Oh, say at least a dozen of each for the price being charged.
My shrimp were lightly battered and fried to a golden brown with a very good tasting breading having been used. The shrimp in my opinion were of the medium variety in size. The fries were a good grade of the restaurant frozen variety, however, the coleslaw was very good and I really liked it. It tasted like it had mustard seeds as well as a tad of mustard mixed in the slaw dressing that gave it a little tang in the background when you took a bite. I’ll definitely get it again next time. The hushpuppies were also quite tasty and I do believe they are made in house and are not of the frozen family.
The fried oysters were also lightly breaded with the same batter/breading as the shrimp. They were also fried to a golden brown and when you bit into them they were still soft and tasty on the inside without a lot of moisture streaming out of them like the pre-shucked oysters other places serve. In fact, from my seat I had a good line of sight to the kitchen and watched them bread and deep fry the various dishes being ordered. And, I might add as a side note, all of the kitchen staff were wearing blue disposable gloves for food handling. I like that!
Been there Before and Liked it
This particular visit was our third to Poboys Cajun Grill and both of the other times we went, we had ordered the Po-boy’s. In fact, on our previous visit we had taken friends of ours with us that are originally from Louisiana and they were impressed with the food and said it tasted just like what they remember when they lived there. So, that is a good recommendation when a transplanted Cajun said it was good.
The Brown Bag Review’s Recommendation
The Brown Bag Review would recommend giving Poboys Cajun Grill a try, the easiest way to get to them is take Helton Drive and stay on it through the industrial park. Then take a left where Helton dead-ends into Church Road, go about half of a mile and Poboys Cajun Grill will be on the right. Another route is to take Chisholm Road and hang a right onto Church Road and Poboys Cajun Grill will be on your left.
Lets Do The Numbers…..
|Fried-Shrimp:||(7.0 / 9)|
|Fried-Oyster:||(7 / 9)|
|Coleslaw:||(7 / 9)|
|Fries:||(6 / 9)|
|Fried-Oyster:||(7 / 9)|
|Ice-Tea:||(7 / 9)|
|Staff-Friendliness:||(7 / 9)|
|Atmosphere:||(6 / 9)|
|Cleanliness:||(8 / 9)|
|Value:||(7 / 9)|
|Average:||(6.9 / 9)|
Credit cards: Yes
Catering Service Available: Call
Recommendations: Cajun Dishes
Suggestions: Shrimp Po-boys
Ambiance: Down home country
Service: Small town friendly
Vegetarian Friendly: Ask
Price Range: $$
Health Score: 96
Smoke Free: Yes
Soft Drink Brand: Pepsi, bottles
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this review are the honest opinions of the author and fellow reviewer, and whom are solely responsible for its content. This opinion was not influence by any third party whatsoever. If and when you visit the reviewed restaurant your opinion may vary greatly. So as always YMMV! All images are copyright of The Brown Bag Review.com unless otherwise noted. Use by permission only.