Joey’s caters to pocketbooks, sea-faring palates

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While a friend and I sat on a bench waiting for the rest of our party at Joey’s Seafood and Grill on Prince Street, I could already tell I was going to enjoy myself. The atmosphere reminded me of something I would see at a restaurant on the beach, not something I saw often in Conway, Ark.

My friend was reasonably nervous about our trip to Joey’s. A vegetarian who despises seafood, she was totally outnumbered by the other six of us who were all in the mood for bottom-dwellers and other delectable salt water creatures. I assured her it would be fine.

The hostess put together a special table large enough to accommodate our party and we were set. Our waitress promptly took our drink orders. Keeping with the spirit of Conway, Joey’s offered several alternatives to the standard soda or tea (since alcohol isn’t an option). One member of our party ordered a Caribbean Cooler mocktail and found it very refreshing and fruity.

We all looked over the menu and were pleasantly surprised by the excellent prices and the large variety of food – except, of course, for our vegetarian friend. There really weren’t many options other than salad.

I immediately decided on shrimp. I ordered the half pound of sauté-garlic shrimp with roasted potatoes and hush puppies as my side items. Other members of my party branched out by ordering chicken Alfredo, spicy catfish and even fish tacos.

Our vegetarian friend immediately asked the waitress for assistance. She was quickly informed that there really wasn’t much on the menu for vegetarians except salad. She could see the disappointment on our friend’s face and immediately offered to set her up a big salad with all the fixings. Our vegetarian friend ordered a side of hush puppies and smiled contently.

Not long after we placed our order the waitress came out with bad news. I wouldn’t be getting those roasted potatoes I had wanted after all. They were all out. I settled for seasoned fries and asked for a side of ranch dressing.

My shrimp were delicious as were the hush puppies and the fries. The whole meal was savory. One of my party members got sauté vegetables as her side item and was very impressed with their flavor.

When we had finished eating our meals (which were all served to us without any mistakes being made with our orders) we discussed the food. We all seemed pleased. Even our vegetarian friend was happy because she was charged a very reasonable rate for her big salad.

We all spent between $5 and $15 on our meals. And these were very sensible prices for the amount of food, the quality of the food and the atmosphere we ate it in.

None of us were expecting this chain seafood place to be that great, but we were all pleasantly surprised. Give Joey’s Seafood and Grill a shot; you won’t be sorry.

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