Steamboat Bill’s (Lake Charles, LA)
Since the drive from Grand Isle, LA to Alvin, TX is about 10 hours, we decided to take an overnight in Sulphur, LA in between. On the recommendation of Edie’s dad’s bus buddy, Leslie, we stopped at Steamboat Bill’s, which is apparently a town staple for seafood and Cajun cooking.
Since Steamboat Bill’s features both Cajun food and seafood, we went for a little of both. For one of our options, we went with the large bowl of shrimp etouffe. For those that don’t know, a basic etouffe features a dark roux, onions, peppers, celery, tomatoes, tons of seasonings, and some meat over rice.
Steamboat Bill’s shrimp etouffee was as good as any we’ve had before. It was thick and flavorful with a healthy serving of small shrimp. The base was spicy, giving enough of a kick, but it wasn’t overwhelming such that it drowned out the overall flavor.
When we glanced over the menu, we saw the Small Platter, which comes with a stuffed shrimp, catfish, stuffed crab, shrimp, fries, slaw, and a Louisiana roll. The part we didn’t really consider was that the entire platter was fried. Oops!
So once the food showed up and we realized our error, we dove right in because what was the alternative? For starters, the Small Platter isn’t so small. In terms of flavor, this was some amazing fried seafood. It was crispy with no grease, had a good dose of seasonings, and was just perfectly cooked throughout.
The stuffed shrimp probably had more crab meat stuffed into it than there actually was shrimp. The stuffed crab certainly didn’t skimp on the stuffing either. The plain ol’ fried shrimp alone would probably be enough for most appetites. And the catfish was perfect. The fries were fries. Good enough to get the job done.
There’s no table service at Steamboat Bill’s. Everyone we dealt with at the counters, though, was exceptionally friendly and responsive.
In terms of overall value, you really can’t complain about what you get here. A big serving of gumbo or etouffee runs $9.99. A small is $6.99. The Small Platter is $15.99 and is really enough for two to share if you just want a filling meal without being overstuffed. They have a bigger meal called the Captain’s Platter, but I can’t imagine eating that solo.
Considering the amount of food on just the Small Platter and in the bowl of etouffee, the total bill of $28.32 isn’t too shabby at all. We even had enough for…
The Doggy Bag, By Knox
So Mom and Scott have this incredibly annoying thing they do when they bring me a few delicious morsels. They sit the food in front of me, then say “Leave it”. Then Mommy snaps picture…after picture…after picture to make sure she gets the most humiliating picture possible.
So this time, they bring me a little of this and a little of that. They get their picture. As you can see, in this one, it looks like I’m trying to play with my food. Oh yeah, laugh it up! The dog doesn’t know he’s supposed to just eat it. For the record, the arm rest was in the way, so I couldn’t get my butt down. Then, to top it off, after I start eating, Momma says she wants a better picture and requests Scott to move the food down.
Well, I wasn’t having that. I grabbed hold of the little container and held on for dear life. You can’t take it back once you give it, people! Anyway, the food was great and I licked the little container until it was clean and then licked it a little more because it still tasted good.
Just a reminder to Mommy and Scott: I greatly appreciate you remembering to bring me something (much better than your previous performances, that’s for sure!), but I’m a 50lb dog and require a bit more food than one of those little Papillon frou-frou things. A little something more next time, please.