Fish Tales at Galveston Mardi Gras – A Tale of Two Cities

Oh, what a night! The celebrations in Galveston have evolved greatly from their origins in 1867 to George Mitchell’s re-invention in 1986 to now. The Island was positively electric with excitement, and the whole community was alive with color and sound. No costume is too outlandish anymore and beads are de rigueur. When the party down the street at the Galveston Convention Center includes Pitbull – why hold back?

The friendly, on-point Fish Tales staff was ready for anything and good that they were. The waves viewed from the upstairs deck were just more sparkling bling necklaces tossed into the afternoon sun. IMHO, you cannot have a bad time at Fish Tales, along Seawall Boulevard, in Galveston, Texas.

View of Pleasure Pier From Fish Tales Deck

Everyday treats include PoBoys on hot crispy French Bread and perfectly fried seafood. The sauces range from cocktail to tartar to their own spicy remoulade. We could not which we wanted more, so we had an….

Oyster and Shrimp PoBoy – a Sexy Combo!

As gumbos go, this one holds up to to the dark roux test and is stuffed with shrimp, oysters, okra, the “trinity”  (celery, onions and bell pepper) and a sweet slice or three of Andouille sausage. Its spicy sweetness warmed me to the core, so we didn’t waste time with the rice!

“Secret” Seafood Gumbo
 

We came back the following day hoping for some leftovers. Nope – none left! So we tried the signature Bacon-Wrapped Shrimp Kisses. Bite into one and the gooey cheese melts on your tongue, a great complement to the fresh shrimp blanketed by not-overdone maple bacon. The toasty onion rings reminded me of those of my youth and these were stacked like the onion volcano from that ubiquitous Japanese steakhouse.

Onion Rings and Signature Bacon-Wrapped Shrimp Kisses
 
We popped back in on FishTales the day after the second weekend Mardi Gras parade night and found the staff as neatly pressed and ready-to-meet and greet as the night before.

 

Fish Tales General Manager Brett Otteman and his 
Kitchen Manager Joe Haenchen
 
A couple of months ago, General Manager Brett Otteman, of Fish Tales in Galveston, needed to find a Kitchen Manager FAST. He asked if he could run a request for that staff member in the Facebook Group, Houston Eats by Jack Tyler and I agreed – happy to help. Being quickly communicative astute young men, they were talking within a week, and Brett had found his new Kitchen Manager, Chef Joe Haenchen.

By the way, did I mention the spread for guests that night was filled with everything you could want in the way of seafood?

Blackened Catfish Etouffee with Spicy Crawfish
Fried Catfish – Piping Hot
 
Supplied with huge bags of multi-colored beads, each guest tentatively began pitching them over the railing to waiting passersby below. As the evening wore on, the shouts and pleadings became louder and requests more daring (as you will see below).
Fun Just Started
 
Can’t start a Lenten diet without plenty of bakery sweets and treats and these were just SOME of them. We tried what we liked and then our neighboring table-mates brought even more back from the tables that we HAD to try.
Dark Chocolate Mousse With 
White Chocolate Shavings and Edible Nasturtiums
Fruit Tarts Filled With Cream Cheese

 

Smoked Salmon With
All the Fixin’s (capers, onions, chopped egg)
These Costumed Crazies “Buying” Beads Caught My Eye
(Too Bad They Were Rubber!)

 

Mardi Gras Cupcakes Wore a Riot of Color

 

Colorful Tortellini and Delicious Ravioli
Campechana 
A Regional Ceviche of Squid, Shrimp, Avocado, Cilantro, 
Onion, Jalapeno, Lime, and Tabasco
A Sea of “Sunburn Shrimp” Came Wave After Wave
Boiled Shrimp are Always a Favorite at Fish Tales…
 NOT just at Mardi Gras!
 
It wasn’t just a “little bit good” party at Fish Tales – it was mo’ betta! The quality service, food and generous portions would please any owner. And guess who came by to check in on the party?
Jack Tyler and Tilman Fertitta, the CEO
(P.S. Watch for his new reality show: Billion Dollar Buyer on CNBC Mar. 22)
The music? Live rock and roll of course. As I recall, it ended much too soon. Naturally, we heard that folks danced on the tables after we left. Ah well…we had great fun and ate our way well into the next day. Now we are walking the straight and narrow until Easter, but oh, what a night! Our thanks for our great hosts at FishTales. Warmer days are ahead and we’ll be back alright!
2502 Seawall Boulevard, Galveston, Texas 77550
A Landry’s Select Restaurant
(409) 762-8545
 

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