Hyped (verb): Promote or publicize (a product or idea) intensively, often exaggerating its importance or benefits.
Hype (noun): exaggerated publicity; hoopla.
Duped (verb): Deceive; trick.
The two definitions above help me describe The Southern Steak and Oyster restaurant. There has been a lot of hype about this place, so of course we went. The first great thing is, they will validate parking in the garage attached to the building. Walking in the place, I almost forgot that I was in Nashville. Smiling faces greet you at the main entrance. They also have a nice window view from almost every table in the place except for the rooms in the back and about 7 or 8 booths in the front. You can tell a lot of thought was put into the design, because by being in this business we know some guest are picky about where they sit and always want a seat with a view (to be honest it is not where you sit, it is who you are sitting with). The well-crafted bar was placed close to the middle of the restaurant, good view if you want to see the assortment of liquor or the employees shucking oysters.
Alright, the real deal is the food. Both of my visits to this restaurant have been during lunch, and from looking online they do offer various menus throughout the day. The lunch menu includes a meat’n 3 special, fish, burgers, and more. On my first visit we had oysters and deviled eggs to start. The oysters were just oysters, but what helped was the variety of sauces they offer. Those
deviled eggs were sub-par, the flavoring was ok; however, the outside looked like little baby red potatoes, and felt like them as well (hard). On my first visit, we ordered the fried grouper sandwich (big ass mistake ordering fish on Monday). I fault myself for ordering this catastrophe; it tasted way too fishy which means it probably had been sitting in the kitchen since Thursday or Friday. The best part of the sandwich was the brioche bread it came on and they did have some pretty good sweet potato fries. The barbecuban, my guest loved it. It had pickles, mustard, and braised bbq pork which was on point. It came with black beans that looked more like black bean soup.
On my second visit, we had the Leipers lunch steak, the free bird sandwich (by default meat’n3 lunch special was 86’d). Ok when my steak arrived, I noticed the fries were not on the plate, but the extra side of mac and cheese was. The sauce on the steak was good, but that thin ass piece of meat with no side, I could have gotten it anywhere. There were no complaints on the chicken sandwich, but it’s hard to fuck up a chicken sandwich. Oh yeah the mac and cheese could have stayed in the back, they used too much flour in the sauce and no salt and pepper.
I have been there twice and both times, I have felt the wrath of their lackluster food, but both times we have had good service. A plus is one of the oyster shuckers was just talking away to guest, he was giving that extra attention. I loved the atmosphere; however, I hate to say you can get better food at J Alexander’s, but unlike J’s the service here is more natural and not cookie cutter. I would love to go back, but maybe just to give the desserts a try, and have a drink.