I have been craving some really good oysters on the half shell for months now and Boss Oyster has been on my mind. From trips past I remember some really great oyster dishes and the super large heads-on shrimp steamed with butter and Old Bay...pull off the heads and suck'em, then peel the shrimp with the buttery sauce dribbling down your arms and chin. Heaven!
As soon as we pulled into Apalach we headed for the Boss. I had been entertaining thoughts of both lunch and dinner at the Boss since we were staying over night at the absolutely fantastic Apalachicola River Inn. But, first things first, and the first thing was lunch. I ordered a dozen of Apalachicola's little gems on the half shell. They were shucked perfectly...something that you rarely see here in Tampa. They were a little small, but they were fresh and salty. Yum-o (thanks Rachel)!
Next came the heads-on shrimp. Wow, what a buzz kill! The shrimp were of a good size, but it looked as if they had been steamed, tossed on a plate, and had a couple of tablespoons of Old Bay dumped unceremoniously on top. The disappointment didn't stop there. The shrimp were either old or really over cooked or both. They were dry and tough and hard to peel. The waitress seemed more than slightly unimpressed that I was unimpressed with the shrimp. Ho, hum!
Admittedly, the menu did say "Simply Steamed." I have had much better at Boss Oyster (better food, selection and service), and these shrimp were simply disappointing and not worth the drive from Tampa. I have heard some good things about Papa Joe's and I think we will give that a try on our next trip north.
We didn't go back that evening for dinner. Instead, we went to Caroline's, a sister restaurant, and had a truly memorable meal.