When it comes to fresh wild caught seafood, a raw bar, charbroiled and any other possible method of serving an oyster, there’s a new sheriff in town, so to speak.
Meet Coast Seafood and Brew, where a reinvented menu, new name and interior upgrade has occupied the former sports bar / night club spot inside the Beau Rivage.
So what’s new?
For starters, the name leads the way. What used to simply be “Coast” still has “Coast” in it’s name, but the addition of “Seafood and Brew” give clear homage to the updated direction of the menu and vibe.
The interior design has had a nice upgrade as well, most notably with the addition of the raw bar area that gives guests a peek into the action of fresh oyster shucking… But I’m getting ahead of myself. In addition to the new raw bar, new table tops and banquette fabrics, brighter lighting and whitewashed wood has utterly transformed the vibe of this space.
The Coast Seafood and Brew menu features tasty options with fun names – the menu sparks conversation and engagement and begs to be explored with sections like The Bow, Port and Starboard. There are more than 40 craft beers from which to choose and some of these include brews made exclusively for the Beau Rivage.
I must mention that the interior still has a bevy of TVs across the board, continuing to make this a great place to watch sports. But it’s never been a better place to eat than now.
So let’s talk about what to eat.
Dinner started with a cocktail, the Creole Fashion, their $7 twist on an old-fashioned served with table bread, a great little nibble to get us settled in for an exciting meal to come. The cocktails were served with a bread basket of homemade cornbread and biscuits served with potlikker and honey butter. I could’ve stopped right here. But for you, I pressed on.
Next out was an order of Marinated Crab Claws. Crab Claws are available from “The Bow” portion of the creative menu layout in half or full pound portions, fried, broiled or marinated. Rumor has it, you can’t go wrong with any of these options. The meaty claws are soaked overnight in the balsamic marinade then tossed before serving. If you order a pound of the crab claws, the container includes information about their source to prove that they’re local and fresh. The zip and tang on these crab claws kept us coming back for another bite until the bites were gone.
The Oysters on the Half Shell Sampler Platter was one of my favorite finds, available in half or full dozen. It’s like a tasting flight for oysters, so if you love raw oysters, this is a must try. The oysters vary by what is fresh and available, so with each visit you’re likely to get to try something new which is also exciting to me. The platter is served with a tag on each oyster that explains the name and where it’s from (if they don’t do this, ask for it!). This night, we got to try oysters from Washington, Maine, North Carolina and Gulf Coast locations. The varied sizes and flavors were both interesting and intriguing. If you, like me, struggle to hammer down the biggest, fattest Gulf oysters, this platter gives you the opportunity to try several different styles then order a dozen of a specific oyster that suits your fancy.
The options for oysters don’t stop at the raw bar. We continued down the oyster train for a bit into the Starboard portion of the menu. If you’re new to the oyster game and want to try the gateway drug of oysters, I strongly suggest you start with either The Mother Shucker or the Stuffed Oysters.
The Mother Shucker is lightly fried oysters topped with bacon and bright-flavored pickled red onion nestled back in the shell with a yellow sauce they call Land Mass BBQ Sauce. Piping hot and ready to eat, this dish was one of the home runs of the night to me. I know you can lose the oyster covering it with all sorts of other ridiculous flavors, but if you are going to get lost, this might be the way to lose it. Divine assembly of flavors on this dish.
A house specialty hiding at the bottom of the menu is the Oyster Loaf. Don’t overlook this option either. (Are you starting to see a trend here? You either need to bring friends or plan multiple trips!) Starting with fresh Muffaletta bread, the top if cut out to make crostinis. Then provolone is layered into the bottom and a oyster, spinach, pernod, bacon and parmesan mixture are baked on top inside the bread bowl. It’s a spectacular presentation and shareable delight to the tastebuds. Try it!
Don’t love oysters? Try the Shrimp Corn Dog. On this note, I need to admit two things. First of all, I created the Sugar Taylor Sauce used as the dip for this menu item, so I’m definitely partial. Coast purchases our sauce for this menu item, and they tweak it for the dish. Second disclosure, I wasn’t expecting a ground shrimp dog; I was expecting more of a whole prawn type battered shrimp on the stick. With that said, what you get is a delicious hearty snack on a corn dog stick that instantly brings me back to a shrimp boil on a picnic table outside. The presentation is fantastic, the dish packed with rich flavor and yes, I enjoyed the sauce very much as well.
Before you start to judge, and I know you might be judging by now… I didn’t actually finish everything we ordered, and I had help from two “assistants.” But I did finish every bite of the Carpet Bagger Filet Mignon. The name caught my eye, but the Louisiana oysters, bacon, crispy potatoes, braised greens and béarnaise sauce all paired together well. The steak was cooked to perfection, wrapped in a strip of bacon, topped with a béarnaise sauce then topped with three crispy oysters. It was simply riveting.
Coast Seafood and Brew has concocted the moniker “Dock to Table” where I’m told items go from dock to table in less than 24 hours. Same for their oysters, by the way. My guest ordered the Black Grouper from this portion of the menu, and yes, I had a bite. She was raving about it! How could I not? Black pepper parmesan grits, braised local greens and chimichurri (a tangy green herb sauce) with obviously fresh, tender grouper. It was worthy of all the praise.
The Dinghy section is the aptly named “sides” section. With hearty Southern favorites, even the sides menu deserves exploration with items like fresh Braised Greens, Black Pepper Parmesan Grits (same as in the grouper entree) and Pea Tassoulet, your taste buds seem to never run out of reasons to get excited at Coast Seafood and Brew.
The cherry on top was still yet to come. I’m pleased to declare that Coast Seafood and Brew has absolutely mastered the world of dessert presentation. No dessert menus here. Instead, they bring a dessert caddy to your table holding five tiny Mason Jar Desserts. You pick 3 for $8 or all 5 for $12. Naturally, we ordered all five, so we could make appropriate recommendations to you. My recommendation? Order all five. The options on the night we visited included among them banana pudding, s’mores, cherry pie and cheesecake. The chefs who put this together really ran the gamut of flavors, yet all were outstanding.
I pondered which was my favorite, and I’d have to say the cherry pie won out for me, but my guests each had a different favorite. The visual of the S’more was gripping with the toasted marshmallows. Follow your heart, so long as it doesn’t tell you to skip dessert.
It’s Time to Enjoy Coast Seafood and Brew
The service staff was knowledgeable about the menu, and they did an excellent job accommodating our entire evening start to finish. You should keep in mind that around 9 p.m. on most nights, the space does convert into a nightclub, so keep that in mind.
What’s happening with food inside the Beau Rivage property right now is turning heads and winning awards on a national level while leading the way for our local food scene. They’re looking for ways to tell stories with food and feature local products. The reinvention of this space into Coast Seafood and Brew is an approachable extension of this property-wide dedication to culinary excellence, and it really fills a niche for truly local seafood that tourists and locals alike have been seeking. Try it – and tell me what you think! Message us here.