Author: Andy MacDonald

Try the gumbo

It’s an honor for Executive Chef Steve Zucker that will not be taken lightly. The man behind the menu of downtown Mobile’s Dauphin’s recently cracked the Alabama Tourism Department’s list of “100 Things in Alabama to Eat Before You Die” honor with his Gumbo Z’herb. For those not in the know, the dish is credited to the Queen of Creole Cuisine, Leah Chase, who with her husband opened the New Orleans institution Dooky Chase in the 1940s. Not the gumbo you’re thinking of, Gumbo Z’herb is a mixture of greens, smoked ham, sausage and brisket. Zucker’s New Orleans influence...

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Those ol’ back-to-school lunchbox blues again

Well, it’s happened again. You’ve squandered away a perfectly good summer without enough beach time and the kids are back in school. This was a weird month a few years back when Lucas refused to eat cafeteria food. It was his first year in kindergarten and he was not impressed with the grub at his new school, so his mom and I packed lunches every morning. By first grade I had convinced the chap there would be something enjoyable every day and he didn’t have to clean his plate. It made me think of my friends that brought their...

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Serving Mobile since ‘67, with good reason

I’d like to think of myself as a good Mobilian, one who tries to embrace and participate in the traditions, visit the spots that have stood the test of time, immersing myself in the things that give the Port City its character, all while inviting others to do the same. There is one place I regret never having visited until now — The Royal Knight Restaurant and Lounge. I’ve heard a few folks speak on its behalf, singing the Knight’s praises for its good Southern food, but it has slipped my mind for so long. Ashley and I were...

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Shotgun BBQ Sauce the new pride of Mobile

For years the pride of Chickasaw has been Hall’s Sausage. Don’t worry, it still is, but we now have a new reason to celebrate our neighbors to the north with Shotgun BBQ Sauces, Spices and Rubs! Founded by Ed and Angela Pederson, this local sauce is taking the city by storm with multiple television appearances and a pretty big following. I received a couple of bottles for sampling and was immediately impressed with the Original and Double Barrel versions. Original was delightfully sweet and held a fair amount of heat when sampled off the finger. This diminishes when sampling...

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Grandmother’s homemade potato salad

It’s too hot to be cooking out. Unless I get the hankering for a 6 a.m. barbecue, I’m getting nowhere near that charcoal. I’m not going to monkey with the smoker or even lounge around in the hammock until after Labor Day. Not to complain. I completely understand this city is supposed to be hot as we transition from July to August. It’s just that spending the greater part of my life on or near the Gulf Coast has made me realize that as I get older, I cannot handle the heat the way I used to. I wore...

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Tiki Week begins Aug. 7

It’s a week of all things rum and fruity, certain to be garnished with grass skirts and floral-print shirts as downtown is taken over by the first-ever Mobile Tiki Week from Monday, Aug. 7 through Saturday, Aug. 12. Participating bars will be featuring original Tiki cocktails (and more) all week long. The Haberdasher, The Noble South’s Sidecar Lounge, The Merry Widow and the OK Bicycle Shop will be slinging rum libations with all the fanfare and garnishments you’d expect from an event such as this. Each establishment will donate a portion of its profits to McKemie Place, the only...

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Abbondanza! Yes, there’s great pizza in the mall

So, I may have told you before I hate pizza. It’s not true, I really don’t HATE it, but I got so burned out on pizza a few years ago that I never crave it. I’m never excited about it. I’m OK with it, especially if it comes from a nice place with a wood-fired oven and designer pies that border on “hoity-toity,” but it would never be my first choice. The predictable chain restaurants that offer the goofy things I loved as a kid are now offering the same goofy things (and then some) that show up in...

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Scarlet Pearl Casino revamps menus

Dining on the coast just got a little better. The Scarlet Pearl Casino recently announced menu changes for Scarlet’s Steaks and Seafood as well as Butler’s Bar and Lounge. The flagship restaurant of this D’Iberville casino, which features 300 hotel rooms and miniature golf as well as gaming, is boasting orange marmalade bone-in pork chops, veal Milanese and stuffed coldwater lobster. Steak features are tomahawk ribeye (my favorite), Delmonico, New York strip and a half-rack of lamb. Of course there are plenty of add-ons. The seafood menu features cobia, snapper and redfish, all from the Gulf of Mexico, as...

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