Sunday, May 11, 2014

The Beach Haus On The Bay

There's not much in the food world that gets my taste buds a-twittering as much as seafood. I truly adore Poseidon's gifts from his salty domain, especially if they are presented in a bucket fresh from the steamer and filled to the brim with tasty treats anxiously awaiting a dip in a bowl of clarified butter.

Not long ago I discovered a German restaurant on the Internet that not only serves dishes from the Vaterland, but also lists steamed buckets that loudly called my name:
  • Steam Beer Bucket

    $24.50 1 lb. of Sweet Snow Crab, 1/2 lb. of Clams, 1/2 lb. Peel and Eat Shrimp, White Wurst, Corn and Potatoes cooked in German Pilsner Beer
  • Steam Wine Bucket

    $27.50 1 lb. Whole Lobster, Scallops, Mussels, Knockwurst, Corn and Potatoes cooked in White Wine Citrusy Garlic Sauce
  • Steam Spicy Bucket

    $27.50 1 lb. Whole Lobster, Clams, Crawfish and Debreziner Wurst, Corn and Potatoes, Spicy and Smokey Cajun 

The Beach Haus German Restaurant, 3128 Beach Blvd. South in Gulfport, has been on my gastronomic radar screen ever since, and finally my bride and I made the trip across the bay yesterday to avail ourselves of the Haus's bill of fare.

The Belle of Ballast Point and I were greeted at the door, presented with menus, and promptly seated in a mostly empty restaurant. We had missed the lunch crowd and we were too early for the dinner and party folks.

The Beach Haus has an upstairs deck area, but we decided to sit inside due to a rather stiff breeze that was blowing in from Boca Ciega Bay.

The lunch menu doesn't feature the steamed buckets of seafood, but our charming server, Tammy, pointed out that the buckets were available off of the dinner menu even at this early hour.

To be perfectly correct, I should have written 'bucket' since the Haus now only has one. The wine bucket and the spicy bucket are no longer offered. The remaining bucket is sorta the Steam Beer Bucket. Tammy mentioned that the menu had recently changed.

The remaining bucket is described as a bucket built for two. I was hesitant to order so much seafood since my bride would not be sharing. Seafood with shells is not her stein of beer, so to speak. After mulling over my decision I decided to cowboy myself up and get that bucket.

What was served wasn't quite what I had imagined from the website descriptions. There was a whole lot of empty bucket. The shrimp were scattered about that scrawny looking snow crab. Under that was a mesh bag with a whole lot of mussels, some clams, a cob of corn, a few red potatoes, and a white wurst. The seafood and veggies were well prepared and probably would have been sufficient for two light eaters, but this was a bucket built for one. Also, it would have been a nice touch if someone had skimmed the crud from the clarified butter.

Another menu change that wasn't listed on the website is the cost of the bucket. It went from $24.50 to $36.50. I'm not complaining about the price, this is just an FYI. Seafood, like everything else we consume, is going up dramatically. The high cost of seafood is just something we will have to accept as a fact of life, though I do think the bucket should have been filled to match the two person price.

I'm not forgetting my lovely bride. She started with an order of potato pancakes with lingonberries and sour cream. The potatoes were crispy on the outside and moist on the inside. She was pleased with this selection.

Following the pancakes, she requested the Waldorf Salad Sandwich with chicken, apples, grapes, celery, walnuts, mayo, lettuce, and tomato on kaiser roll. Her side was a simple potato salad. Both salad and sandwich were good she said, just not spectacular. The salad was a little dry and could have used a bit more mayo.

With several beers apiece, our total came to a reasonable $63.39. We added 20% for Tammy. Except for the breeze coming from the bay, we were not blown away by our visit to the Beach Haus, but I am glad we gave it a try. I definitely would not return for the seafood.

Beach Haus on Urbanspoon


  1. I see the restaurant has changed it's name again. We tried it a few months ago and weren't impressed. I think it was called J's
    Waterfront Dining. The establishment had just scored a bunch of tables and chairs from the auction of the Wine Cellar, Redington Shores. We encountered the same dilemma, items on the menu were not available, lunch items could not be made at dinner even if on the menu. I didn't post my review because I was going to give them a second chance, but the Mister dug in his heels and would not give them a second chance. If I run across a seafood bucket of worthiness, trust me I will share the news from the roof tops...not really, but you get my drift.

    1. I think seafood buckets of any kind may be a thing of the past. Prices keep rising and too many people fail to grasp that it may not be the restaurant that's arbitrarily jacking the prices to Jesus, it's just that seafood keeps getting more expensive.

      In the case of the Haus the increase may just be a way to gouge. Earlier today I saw a John's Pass menu. Their one person bucket was about $25 and the two person bucket was about $37. That makes me think I got the Beach Haus Purple Shaft with a Crab Claw Cluster.

      It's always a pleasure to 'hear' from you Tina.