Street's Seafood Restaurant‎: Bay Minette, AL

Cops are a great resource for cheap, tasty eats. Law enforcement officers (likewise with firefighters) risk the most for the least return. Ask any officer that ever attended the Southwest Alabama Police Academy in Bay Minette and they'll tell you the best place in town is Street's Seafood Restaurant.

I visited Street's a few years ago while working on an article about diners. Though famous for their seafood my assignment called for me to eat the same dish at every diner I visited, hamburger steak with gravy. Recently I found myself in Bay Minette for the first time since then so I decided to try what they are famous for, seafood.

Now, I am not the biggest fan of buffets but a Third Coast restaurant rocking all-you-can-eat seafood is hard to pass up. So I didn't.

Included in the buffet is an inviting salad bar that featured a garden of local produce but alas only iceberg lettuce.  Not a deal breaker for most but for me it is.  So I headed to the hot bar where waiting was a bounty of the sea and not all of it fried.  Boiled crab legs, baked catfish and boiled Gulf shrimp are delicious alternatives but with few exceptions there is seldom a better way to eat seafood than cornmeal battered and deep fried.

I enjoyed a plate of fried catfish, boiled and fried shrimp, cheese grits and fried oysters; a few hush-puppies joined the party as well.  I also sampled the seafood gumbo.  Although I prefer my boiled seafood to be spicy, the shrimp was mild but sweet; quite good in fact.  The fried catfish was perfectly done, crispy but not greasy.  The same can be said of the fried shrimp.  The hush-puppies were also very good; fresh not frozen and littered with bits of green onion.

The gumbo, for me, was too bland and the roux did not taste fully cooked.  It also seemed to be made with chicken stock as opposed to a seafood stock.  There was ample seafood in it it just didn't boast much in the way of flavor.  The oysters are a different story.  They were awesome, both my dinner partners and I returned to the buffet for more oysters.  I skipped the large dessert bar but it featured the usuals, peach cobbler and nanner puddin'.  Both looked good but I managed to abstain.

A large sound approaching Bay Minette on Hwy. 31 proudly proclaims that if you visited and didn't eat at Street's you trip was wasted.  Here, here!  Street's Seafood Restaurant is located at 251 U.S. Hwy.31 in Bay Minette, AL.  Phone (251) 937-2664.
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