Bourbon Bluez Oyster House in Kennesaw Delivers
By Kathie Beckett
Michael DePasquale believes in giving people want they want to eat and drink, and it works. He knows how to run a great restaurant, and it shows with his latest Cajun/seafood fusion creation: Bourbon Bluez Oyster House in Kennesaw.
The owner/restaurateur has years of experience running successful restaurants and nightclubs, including Proof Ocean Drive in Miami, FL, and Club 101 in Baltimore, MD. His secret? He explained, “I want our customers to enjoy the quality of food, the service, and the ambiance of the restaurant. It’s all about customer service here.”
Customer service begins with giving diners what they really want: simple food done really well. For example, fresh steamed seafood, Po’Boy sandwiches, and fried seafood baskets dominate the menu. He said, “Our food takes a little more time because we do everything to order. For example, we are not using pre-battered items, but, instead we hand-batter your order as it comes in. It makes a difference.”
A lot of love goes into the food at BBOH. Executive Chef Sermural (“SJ”) Dozier and Kitchen Manager Zuberi Douglas like to make people smile with their food. SJ said, “The number one thing we’ve brought to BBOH is our recipes. Everything we make is made from scratch.” Zuberi echoed that: “Anything that comes out of the kitchen is representative of us. It’s something personal. It’s not just a job, but a chance to give the world some of you. A lot of love goes into that food.” General Manager Dan O’Neal said, “I am very proud of both of them. The presentation is beautiful and the recipes are all original and delicious.”
Almost everything in made in-house with that love, including stocks for soups and all sauces. This extra touch gives BBOH an edge over chain restaurants, yet Michael is determined to offer the high quality at very reasonable prices.
Po’Boys are $9.99 and come with your choice of one side; choose from Oyster, Shrimp, Crawfish, crab cake, or Flounder. Fried baskets start at $6.99 for fresh battered crawfish.
Choose from steamers featuring peel-and-eat shrimp (with or without red potatoes, onions, and corn), or try the mussels, claims, or oysters. It makes a difference where your oysters come from if you’re an oyster connoisseur. BBOH offers oysters from Apalachicola, Blue Point Bay, Chincoteague Salts, and the Chesapeake Bay.
If you like seafood but also want a steak, try the Bourbon Bluez Surf and Turf: a 16 oz Rib-eye steak and shrimp for $21.99. Other entrées include Blackened Shrimp or Chicken Pasta, and Shrimp and Grits. Most entrées come with two sides including red beans and rice, onion rings, house pickled Beets, dirty rice, French fries, and an unusual shrimp macaroni salad.
Michael explains, “Our Shrimp Macaroni Salad is pretty special. It’s mixed like a potato salad, then we add Old Bay and other seasonings, and then add fresh pieces of steamed shrimp to it.”
Lighter entrées also use shrimp, like the shrimp avocado Ranch salad. The dressing is made by blending avocado with Ranch dressing, served on iceberg lettuce and topped with grilled or blackened shrimp. If you go light at dinner, you may have room for one of the fabulous desserts, including traditional bread pudding made with a bourbon sauce. Or, try the chocolate lover’s chocolate cake, Key lime pie made using real Key limes, or cheesecake made four ways: chocolate, Ricotta, Mango, or Raspberry.
“We really do like giving our customers choices, and we constantly listen to them,” said Michael. That shows even in the bar area, affectionately nicknamed the Voodoo Lounge by the staff members.
BBOH offers signature drinks like Voodoo Sex, the Bob Marley, and the Watermelon Jolly Rancher, but bartender Nicole Fishman said, “Our most popular drink is the Margarita. Everybody loves a Margarita, so we do four different ones, including a coconut pineapple version with a sugared rim.” They also have fun when the train comes by. She said, “When the train comes by, we shake our beads, and anyone in the building may order a ‘train shot’ for only $1.” A wide range of craft beers is also available, and bottles of Budweiser, Bud Light, or Miller Lite are only $2, every day. A bottle of wine with dinner ranges from $15 to $27.
Co-owner/designer Michelle Hendricks and Michael want to give people a good time, even late at night. He said, “We have a really nice late night menu for people coming into the bar who are hungry and want to eat right away. We serve most of these items in about 5-7 minutes and it’s very affordable. It’s a smaller menu but it’s what people like.” He continued, “We constantly strive for 100% customer service and to put out the best products we can. We want families to come in and enjoy this place, so we make it affordable for everyone and offer a little something for everyone. We want you to come in, eat some great food and have a nice, relaxing time.”
Bourbon Bluez Oyster House is open Sun – Tues 11am to 11pm, Wed – Sat 11am to 2:30am. Located at 2756 S. Main Street in Kennesaw, tel. 770-694-6786 or bourbonbluezoysterhouse.com. DJ and/or live music Wed-Sat. Catering and delivery available; call for details.