Hogfish Bar and Grill
|Hogfish Bar & Grill at 6810 Front Street on Stock Island has been a favorite for a while. Although it has become popular with more tourists than in previous years, it’s still very much a locals’ place. Many tourists won’t venture off Duval Street which, unfortunately, is their loss.
||For me, Hogfish epitomizes the way Key West was over 20 years ago. To quote Greg “Stock Island is now what Key West used to be, yet many tourists want no part of it. Some neighborhoods of Key West looked like Stock Island does now.” From The Hogfish’s website “The ‘charm’ we offer is that you will experience the style of what the Lower Keys used to be… before the nightlife and carnival atmosphere took over.”
There is nothing fancy about Hogfish and that’s okay; we don’t want fine dining every day. The indoor section is spacious and “rustically-nautical” and the bar is hopping… but we love sitting outdoors! Okay, maybe I love it more than Greg, but I came from an area that receives an average of 60 days of sun/year, so…bring it! Anyway, we had lunch today and of course it was wonderful.
We started by splitting the lobster bisque…seriously yummy! Bobby (Mongelli, the owner) wasn’t stingy on the lobster and the flavor was phenomenal.
Greg always gets the fried shrimp tacos. We turned my friend Wayne from New York on to them last September. He wasn’t entirely sure about them, but took a chance. Let’s just say he was very happy with his choice. The combination of those sweet fresh shrimp, the cheese, the jalapenos and I don’t know what Bobby puts in his Baja sauce…but it is amazing.
|I wanted something different as I normally get the fried shrimp tacos as well. Today, I ordered their signature dish…the “Killer” hogfish sandwich. This is served on Cuban bread smothered in mushrooms, onions, and Swiss cheese. You can order the fish grilled, fried or blackened…I got it grilled and nixed the onions. Hogfish is a very flavorful but mild-tasting fish. This sandwich is large and delicious though I left much of the bread and didn’t eat the fries.
Another great thing about Hogfish being on Stock Island is that you can have alcohol on Sundays before noon. In the city of Key West, this is not the case so many from the city travel to Stock Island. Let me tell you about the Stock Island Shrimp & Grits…the grits are creamy, cheesy, and served with sautéed shrimp, peppers, onions & Cajun spices. (No onions for me!)
This dish is heart-stoppingly good, in more ways than one…Bobby told Greg the other day what is in those grits. I won’t have them for another year. However, I’ve heard that if you drink a Mimosa with them on Sundays, the acid in the orange juice cancels the cholesterol. Honest, I heard it. 🙂
Folks, do yourselves a favor…leave Duval Street for a moment and check out Hogfish Bar and Grill. You’ll keep going back.