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Jan 11, 2010 07:07 AM

Best Reuben in Arlington? or Shrimp Po-Boy?

I've got a craving again! (And I want the real deal, please, nice and grilled with oozing cheese over tart kraut, and savory, tender meat without too much fat.).

By the way, any updates on a good shrimp po-boy in the area?

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  1. I don't know about Arlington, but Smith & Clarkson's Deli in Annandale at the Ravensowrth shopping center on Braddock Road (go straight across at the end of the exit ramp from westbound Braddock at 495 exit) makes a pretty good oozey gooey Reuben.

    1. Thirsty Bernie's at Lee Hwy and N. Glebe Rd is a very good place for a Ruben and other smoked meat sandwiches -- and sausage/brat too. Also, Cowboy Cafe just a block west of that same intersection on Lee Hwy does pretty good po-boys. Not the best, but pretty good stuff.

      1 Reply
      1. re: BRL

        Cowboy Cafe's po-boy is pretty good, but it's a special; check before you go to see if they have them.

      2. i see rt's in clarendon is gone, replaced by a sports bar. just what we need.
        went to cowboy cafe sunday morning and got their fried fish special (it was actually saturday night's special, but made fresh for us that morning). 3 honkin' pieces of catfish in their very nice crusty, light cornmeal-tinged batter. a very tasty hot corn and jalapeño relish-type side dish (that should instead be served cold, splashed with a shot of vinegar), and some nice non-mayonnaisey cole slaw. full-flavored creamy, spicy red remoulade for dipping. $12. (but $2.50 for coffee?!?! come ON!)

        they should have fried fish on the menu all the time --- i'd prefer grouper, though, by far. a grouper sub would be snapped up, i'd bet. the waitress says that anytime they have fish it sells out quickly. hey, cowboy cafe, get the picture? we want more seafood! ;-).

        1. got a shrimp po-boy at "america seafood" behind the lee-heights shopping center in arlington yesterday. the shrimp were definitely fresh gulf shrimp. i think they sprinkled old bay on the shrimp (a bit) so, ask them not to do that if you don't like it. it is cooked to order. the cole slaw was pretty good, and the fries were ok, but -- again -- ask them to hold (much) salt.

          the sandwich bread looked pressed, like a cuban. the sandwich was lightly dressed with a very non-descript tartar sauce and sliced tomato and wilted-from-the-heat-of the shrimp (but fresh) julienned lettuce <maybe i waited too long to eat the sandwich regarding the wilted lettuce, to be fair. i got to munching on my fries. ;-)>. i want to say that there were probably about 10 medium shrimp in the sandwich. i'd have loved to have some remoulade.

          po-boy was $10, and the sides were an extra $3. can of coke, $1.40.

          i had gone in for a grouper sandwich, so i'll try that next time. they offer a surprising variety of different fresh fish and seafood on sandwiches or platters. this is a strength, for sure. friendly people, too.

          while i was there, they had several regular customers that came in to buy seafood to cook at home for dinner. the prices are higher than other seafood in the area stores around here, but the fish looked impeccable. i know that the shrimp were very fresh. and...the place did NOT smell of fish or seafood. good sign!

          i tasted a sample of their smoked bluefish. it was very good; i think that they sell it for $15 per pound. that is cheaper than their fresh fish, which was generally around $20-$25, if i recall correctly. i think the bluefish was the best of the three smoked items that i tried, the others being scallop and mussel (which did have some grit. ;-(.

          they also had take-out-ready soups and chowders, and some other heat and serve items. the smoked salmon looked good, too.

          i'll definitely return. freshness counts!

          3 Replies
          1. re: alkapal

            I have had Am Seafood lobsters which they steam in the store - terrific - and purchased sushi grade Tuna from them. Not a regular customer but certainly a pleased one. I always thought of asking them to fry oysters to eat on site but, hey, you just convinced me to stop in and ask!

            1. re: alkapal

              Were the shrimp breaded and fried? I'm trying to picture a po' boy with pressed Cuban like bread. Did they have other po' boys on the menu? I could go for a good one but haven't found one in the area. I want the regular french bread one, though. I can't find a website for them.

              1. re: chowser

                the shrimp had what i'd describe as a cornmeal-flour dusting, like we do with fried fish in florida. it definitely wasn't a bready batter coating.

                although the bread was like cuban bread, i found it fine for the purpose. the crunch for the sandwich was provided by the shrimp.

            2. just had a shrimp po-boy at cowboy cafe in arlington (which were told is now under new ownership in the past few months by four young local professionals) on tuesday. very good! tasty and good-sized real gulf shrimp (i always inquire about shrimp origins), good remoulade, tasty bread and nice slaw as a side. $9.

              good, friendly service.

              great happy hour beer prices too. i liked the fat tire beer, and mr. alka enjoyed his IPA. $3 pints between 3-7 pm!

              if you haven't been in a couple of years…check it out and try them again. this was a better everything compared with the american seafood po-boy -- from the food to service to ambience to proper seating ;-). for one thing, sides are included and they don't put old bay on the shrimp!

              fellow shrimp lovers, i just got back from southeastern gulf-zone texas and the shrimp at hong kong pearl seafood is better than any of the shrimp meals i had in texas….. i am addicted to it. huge shrimp fried perfectly (every one of the -- at the very least -- four times i've had it) with finely-sliced red and green chiles sprinkled on top. i get mine heads off (shell off). (that's just how i roll, so don't bust my chops). around $15, but a huge platter! it is called pan-fried shrimp ball. better than the same dish at XO taste which they call deep fried spicy jumbo shrimp. which is better than chengdu salt and pepper shrimp at HK palace. now here is my dream ticket, HK pearl starts making a shrimp po-boy.

              ps on the reuben sandwich front, whitlow's does a nice one, and they have sandwich deals all week -- and all day on wednesday.

              4 Replies
              1. re: alkapal

                If you're looking for more shrimp po'boys to try, there was one on the menu at Walker's Grille, new restaurant in Alexandria. I've been really happy w/ the food there. Somewhat along the lines of the GAR, only food is better and better quality. It's an odd location but a nice contemporary place.

                1. re: chowser

                  cool, chowser, thanks for the tip!

                  i was hoping you'd see my post, fellow shrimp lover. '-).

                2. re: alkapal

                  hong kong pearl's "shrimp ball"

                  1. re: alkapal

                    HK pearl "shrimp ball"
                    Cowboy Cafe -- two versions of the shrimp po-boy (make sure and ask that they press it together and do a grill, like in version #2).