The Fish Place's chefs use a simple recipe for all their dishes: fresh seafood and Cajun spices. Of course, there's a lot of variety to be found within those parameters. They boil shellfish in the hearty broths of gumbos and etouffes, and fry up catfish and oysters with hot Cajun flavors. Fish and shrimp are stuffed full of cheese and other delicious tidbits. Most courses are served with Southern-style sides, ranging from the iconic red beans and white rice to hush puppies.
Cuisine Type: Fresh Cajun
Reservations: Not offered
Handicap Accessible: Yes
Number of Tables: 11?25
Parking: Parking lot
Most popular offering: Fried/grilled/blackened fish, shrimp
Alcohol: Beer and wine only
Delivery / Take-out: Yes
Outdoor Seating: Yes
Jackson Market Fresh Seafood's rotating menu relies on what nearby fishermen can ensnare in their nets, which often includes both freshwater and saltwater crustaceans such as crawfish and blue crabs. Once captured and cleaned, the seafood appears fried on top of po' boy rolls, barbecued on specialty platters, and grilled in baskets alongside fries and sides of butter sauce. Creole-inspired soups and gumbos can be purchased as single servings or by the gallon for filling troughs at seals-only cafeterias.
A native of Taiwan and veteran chef with more than 20 years of experience, Redfish Seafood chef David Chang whips up a culinary cornucopia of fresh seafood dishes that borrow from his experiences working in French, Chinese, and Japanese kitchens. Fresh grouper and bacon-wrapped scallops get a tropical spin thanks to a drizzle of key lime sauce, while parmesan dusted sea bass soaks up the salty notes of a miso reduction. Hot rocks shrimp and stuffed mushrooms provide a poppable prelude to a savory seafood dinner and lobster bisque or gumbo fill the spoons of lads and ladies who lunch. As guests gobble down forkfuls of fresh fish, their eyes take in an ambiance inspired by their own patronage. The second floor of the restaurant showcases a wall mural composed by frequent customer and local artist Ray Shipman, who painted whimsical caricatures of Redfish Seafood regulars. At the second location in Cypress, an aquarium designed and build by chef David himself sets a maritime mood and dazzles diners with its collection of eye-catching fish and their spot-on Don Knotts impersonations.
At one table, guests valiantly attempt to slay the fried catfish, pico de gallo, and red beans that burst from a Cajun burrito. At another, a mix-and-match platter of shrimp tacos and stuffed jalapeños draws reverence from passersby as its creator digs in elatedly. Scenes such as these have taken place at Fish Place locations across Houston since 2005, giving Texans a taste of New Orleans without the trouble of traveling or holding a bayou chef hostage. For gaggles of empty bellies, Fish Place offers family packs that range up to 100 pieces of a chosen fried meat along with classic sides such as coleslaw, onion rings, and jambalaya rice.
Whenever a customer orders a side of hush puppies, Seafood Cafe manager Asad Jawad likes to joke with them a bit. "Ma'am, there is a little problem," he'll say. "When I got these puppies, they were little, and now they are grown dogs." Whether or not this elicits a chuckle, it only takes a glance at the eatery's portion sizes to see what Asad means. At Seafood Cafe, helpings of Cajun-style seafood are as generous as the staff is friendly.
That should be no surprise, since Seafood Cafe is built on a foundation of friendship. Asad and his friends John Herpin and Misael Cortez, also known as The Three Amigos, started the restaurant after they met working at another eatery five years ago. Bringing together traditional recipes from Louisiana with their restaurant-industry experience, they mix up each recipe with their own twist. The cuisine blends classic Cajun dishes such as blackened catfish and gumbo with Mexican-inflected meals including tilapia tacos. The trio only cooks up food they feel passionate about, and will even distribute free samples to convert people to the menu's more unique flavors. They also plan to encourage big appetites with a wall of fame that will honor those patrons who have made the most of the menu's all-you-can-eat catfish option. And on the weekends, jazz and reggae bands play, filling the dining room with jaunty melodies to match spicy Cajun scents.
Live! at Bayou Place sets visitors loose on a buffet of diversions including entertainment venues, restaurants, and bars. Sundance Cinemas blends a menu of pizzas and sandwiches with film showings, filling moviegoers’ mouths with food to prevent them from shouting out bawdy limericks during love scenes. Diners slice into fine seafood and steaks at Samba Grill or stuff mouths with fresh sushi at The Blue Fish. The Verizon Wireless Theater hosts Live Nation shows that allow music fans to gaze at their favorite bands and performers without having to put a Bono mask on the beagle. Nightlife devotees cap off the late hours with jaunts to take in a bull ride at PBR Houston, absorb the summery atmosphere at Shark Bar, or revel in Chapel Spirits' 3,000-square-foot expanse, which encompasses a private DJ and glass-enclosed patio.