Lap's Grocery and Grill

Some of my coworkers and I have been trying to spend more time together outside of work.  Why?  Because we genuinely enjoy each other's company.  We've been hearing mixed reviews on Lap's Grocery and Grill but decided to try it out for lunch on a Friday.

Fried alligator
What's a trip to a place that boast an alligator pond without trying the alligator?  Alligator is nothing new to me but it was for some of my friends.  I really think alligator taste a lot like chicken but with a slight fish flavor.  This was no different. The nuggets were not overly fried so the meat was still very moist.  I didn't eat the sauce that went with it but my brother thought it was a good accompaniment. 

Also as an appetizer we got this plate.  I forgot what's it's called and I can't find it on the online menu.  It's basically shrimp, oyster and crab claws in butter for about $15.  I thought the shrimp and oyster were quite small and boy was it salty.  I don't know if it was the butter or they were just heavy with the salt.  The crab claws were nice though.  If I had a do over, I would not order this again.

We also got some courtesy rolls with a plate of seasonings/oil to dip it in.  There was 7 of us and one plate of the seasoning/oil.  Let's just say it wasn't really easy to pass around the little plate to dip our bread in it.  My brother and I ended up dipping it in the butter from the seafood appetizer we ordered.  The rolls were nice and fluffy but it would have made more sense if it was a heartier like a french bread.  Who dips rolls in seasoned oil but at Laps?

Shrimp and Grits with Garden side salad $8.99

On the lunch menu, there were not a lot food that's not fried then served in a bun.  After careful consideration, I went for the shrimp and grits.  The shrimp were a nice size and had a crunch to it.  As you can see, there were five shrimps on the bowl.  Not a huge amount but it was enough for have a half a shrimp per spoon of grits.  The grits were stellar. It was nice and creamy.  The smoked gouda cheese gave it some nice depth.  I liked it.  

My meal came with a choice of one side.  Since I was already carb heavy with the grits, I went for a garden side salad.  It's your basic romaine, spinach salad base with tomatoes, red onions, cheese, and croutons.  My brother ate the croutons while I ate the rest of the salad.  Nothing special but it was a good palate cleanser between the appetizers and the shrimp and grits.  

Soft Shell crab poboy with house made chips
My brother never had soft shell crab so he ordered the soft shell crab poboy with house made chips.  He really enjoyed the chips.  In fact, he ate it all before even touching the sandwich.  While he was preoccupied with the chips, I broke off a piece of just the crab.  Like the alligator, it was perfectly seasoned and fried.  I can still taste the crab but it was somehow enhanced.  The poboy comes with lettuce, tomatoes and pickles but no sauce!  Really, no mayo, an aioli or even ketchup.  Granted, the waitress did ask if anyone wanted anything and several of my friends did ask for more condiments.  My brother just assumed the sandwich is meant to be eaten exactly as is.  He said it was too dry without at least some mayo.  The bread is buttered and toasted but it wasn't enough.  He liked it more when he was able to get some tarter on it.

My friends got a wide range of items on the menu from the gumbo to a burger and a salad. The only thing I tasted was the meat on the burger.  It was nicely seasoned but I thought it undersized for the bun.  The shrimp poboy seems to be the best deal though.  It was really overflowing with fried shrimp.  The salad was also huge!  That would definitely fill anyone up. I know my friend wasn't able to finish it all.

Our waitress was nice and attentive.  I was worried about that because I heard service was not the greatest.  While it was a packed house,  I didn't feel neglected in anyway.  The setup is interesting.  Aside from from the restaurant, there's a small deli type thing in the front, a store on one side and on the far side a bait and tackle shop.  The workers in the bait and tackle shop gave us the stink eye though, so we didn't go exploring in there.  There was an outside dining area, a ground level floor complete with pool tables and a stage.  I am sure Lap's plans to have live entertainment sometimes like nearby Tacky Jack's and Blue Gill.  There's also an alligator pond on the side.  There's three medium size gators in there that are a cool addition.  

Although I like Lap's, I don't think it's the best place on the Causeway for seafood.  While lunch is affordable, the dinner menu prices are pretty high.  I don't think there's many items that's under $15 and filling.  Sure, you can get 6 oyster rockerfellars for $11 but you better be ordering something else with that or your stomach will be growling later.  I think it could do better price wise and quality wise especially considering the competition it has just minutes or literally yards away.  

To check out Laps' website, click here and here for a look at the menu.

Lap's Grocery & Grill on Urbanspoon


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