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Oct 18, 2007 06:56 AM

Best Shrimp Po-Boy, Andouille, Low Country in NOVA?

Hounds, please give me your recommendations for the best shrimp po-boys in Arlington, Alexandria, etc. Also Low Country cuisine. Also, andouille with remoulade sandwiches. Thanks!

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  1. Southside 815 in Alexandria has the best low country cusine in NOVA. They have po-boys, but I have never had one, I normally get the low country shortcake or other entrees.

    11 Replies
    1. re: ktmoomau

      hi kt! what is low country shortcake?

      1. re: alkapal

        Their low country shortcake hahaha like any southern low country cuisine is a big mess of things. Here is there menu desciption:
        Roasted chicken, oysters and Mason-dixon mashed potatoes layered with conrbread, succotash and smothered with our homemade country gravy.

        I also love the breadbasket, and the biscuits, and their shrimp and sausage. Pretty much when I am having a real southern craving this is where I head. BF likes the chicken fried steak. Huge, huge portions for me, and not bad prices they have a pretty descriptive website.

        1. re: ktmoomau

          some of the "yelp" reviews were just horrible -- esp. about the smoke!
          true? also, how are the baby back ribs?

          1. re: alkapal

            Never had the baby back ribs, I normally only get ribs at real BBQ places that I think will smoke them. I have never been bothered by the smoke, I actually never noticed it, and I am pretty sensitive, but I also do not eat in the bar only the restaurant. How old are those? I don't remember even seeing people smoking, a lot of Alexandria places have voluntarily banned smoking because of all the proposed bans.

            1. re: alkapal

              The smoke gets pretty bad in the bar at Southside, but I've never noticed any smoke in the main dining area; I think that that area is entirely non-smoking, in fact, and they seem to have good ventilation keeping smoke from rolling over from the bar.

              1. re: alkapal

                I was at Southside on Sunday some time in the middle of the Redskins game and, although we were at the far wall of the restaurant, the cigarette smoke from the bar was quite noticable and annoying to at least one member of our party..

          2. re: ktmoomau

            I agree food is good but the shrimp po-boys were weak. They used small sized shrimp and weren't seasoned enough. The oysters po-boy was much better. I would say, go there for the entrees not the sanwiches, however.

            Comparing any po-boys in this area to the ones I am used to in Lafayette, LA is tough...but I am determined to find a place with great rolls and slightly larger, seasoned crispy, not battered shrimp. Looking forward to reading other responses.

              1. re: thatfarmgirl

                My sentiments exactly, when they're open, I get the half and half and then run over to sonic for a drink...something about their crushed iced drinks and those po-boys...heaven!

              2. re: ktmoomau

                I've had the roast beef po boy at Southside. It sucked. Indistiguishable from a shrinkwrapped sandwich you'd find at a grocery store. I'll try the fried chicken.

                The best shrimp po boy I've had in NOVA is at RT's. Their gumbos and jambalayas are also excellent.


                The po boys at Acadiana and Johnny's Half Shell are fresh and tastyk, but not cheap.



                R T's Restaurant
                3804 Mount Vernon Ave, Alexandria, VA 22305

                901 New York Ave., NW, Washington, DC 20001

                Johnny's Half Shell
                400 North Capitol Street NW, Washington, DC 20001

              3. Oh and you didn't exactly ask for this, but also The Italian Store makes muffalettas.

                1 Reply
                1. re: ktmoomau

                  i did not know that. they are very close and I like their subs (of course) and their deli, and their pizzas...

                  and the yelp posts were from august 07.

                2. Southside has good low country food, but as others have noted, their po-boys aren't that great; the oyster one is probably the best, but nothing spectacular.

                  RT's also used to be good for that type of food, but after a few very mediocre meals there a few years ago, I stopped going. I may have to try it again at some point based on monkey's rec, as there's a definite dearth of andouille in my diet these days.

                  The oyster po-boy at Hank's (now in Alexandria, too--I actually just ate lunch there a few minutes ago) is very good, but not what I'd consider NoLA style (less spicing in the batter, and served on a potato roll); at $13 it's also not the best value.

                  Hank's Oyster Bar
                  1026 King St Ste 1, Alexandria, VA 22314

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: sweth

                    FYI, I was at King Street Blues a few days ago, and remembered that they have po-boys too; the last time I had a po-boy there was probably a decade ago, and I (vaguely) remember that one being very underwhelming, but I on this most recent trip I decided to give them a second chance and try their half-and-half po-boy (shrimp & andouille), and it was actually pretty good--not Mother's on Poydras good, but for this area, surprisingly acceptable.

                    King Street Blues
                    112 N Saint Asaph St, Alexandria, VA 22314

                  2. Has anyone been to that newish place that replaced R.T.'s in Arlington (in the Arlington County government center complex) on Clarendon? I thought the menu was cajun-ish. can't find the name.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: alkapal

                      I think that's a King Street Blues. They do have Po Boys that are OK, but not spectacular.

                      1. re: theoneontheleft

                        yes, it is king street blues. yesterday lunch, i had the shrimp po-boy, and my friend the half and half (shrimp/andouille) po-boy. not out of this world, but not bad for a craving. 10-12 medium shrimp on shrimp po-boy (6 or so on the half and half), light seasoned coating, but very slight hint of that off-shrimp ammonia-like flavor (i.e, not the absolute freshest shrimp). my friend didn't mention anything. the french bread was really fresh and nicely toasted. shrerdded lettuce on mine very fresh, and nice tasty (!) chopped tomatoes on shrimp po-boy. cheese, onions and peppers on the half and half. remoulade for mine was tasty, but sauce wasn't served with the half and half, as it had jack cheese. fries and chips hand cut, and my friend ate every chip! fries were pretty good, but i would've liked them crispier.

                        manager came by three times to see how everything was. friendly service, nice atmosphere for conversation. sweet tea tasted like tricked up instant lipton's. (not a strong point, ahem!). po-boys $10. tea $1.50 +/-. i'll go again, and check out some other items, too.

                        1. re: alkapal

                          Hanks Oyster Bar in Old Town makes an oyster po boy. Haven't tried it but if it's as good as their lobster roll, it should be pretty tasty.


                    2. I've eaten at Southside 815 many, many times. A few observations:

                      I've not had the shrimp Po Boy at Southside, but the oyster one is outstanding. Puts Hank's to shame (more oysters and better, crustier Po Boy roll), and cheaper as well. Also comes with really good fries (the one at Hank's only comes with mediocre cole slaw).

                      I've never noticed cigarette smoke in the dining room. Never. Neither has my wife and she is touchy about that issue because she has asthma. Not saying there's no chance of it being a problem if some folks have noticed it, but I will say it's no reason to avoid the place. Just ask to sit in one of the booths along the far wall if you're really concerned.

                      Southside's ribs very tasty, tender and juicy, but they're not barbequed, though they do come slathered in really good BBQ sauce. Not sure what others think about them, but I like 'em.

                      Their buffalo wings (called "French Quarter Wings" on their appetizer menu) are some of the best around, though they've dialed back the heat over the years.

                      Most everything there is very good, if not better.