Thursday, August 7, 2008

Bubba Gump Shrimp Restaurant & Market, Long Beach, CA

"Shrimp is the fruit of the sea. You can barbecue it, boil it, broil it, bake it, saute it. Dey's uh, shrimp-kabobs, shrimp creole, shrimp gumbo. Pan fried, deep fried, stir-fried. There's pineapple shrimp, lemon shrimp, coconut shrimp, pepper shrimp, shrimp soup, shrimp stew, shrimp salad, shrimp and potatoes, shrimp burger, shrimp sandwich. That- that's about it."-Private Benjamin Buford Blue.

My lovely wife took me to the Aquarium of The Pacific in Long Beach for my birthday. I enjoyed that a lot, but the food there is pretty pricey for burgers and fries so, knowing we were going to be laying out the money anyway, we went across the street to Bubba-Gump's.

The place is covered with movie memorabilia and insider references to all things Forest Gump. The bar is known as Lt. Dan's Getaway. The tables are covered in movie quotes and stenciled locations of Forrest's travels. In-character photos of the actors adorn the walls along with period photos, bric a brac and Cajun approved hot sauces (the funniest of which was "Slap Your Mamma it's so good" hot sauce). There are two license plates on the table. The first says "Run Forest, Run". Flipping it over reveals the second plate which reads "Stop Forrest, Stop". Theoretically this causes the first available wait staff to stop at your location for you to request things like drink refills.

The service was decent. We had a waitress in training. It could have been bad, but it wasn't. The came by and hit us with some Gump trivia about half way between placing our order and it being done. It was effective.

I had had clam chowder and the spicy "Shrimp New Orleans". My Wife had the Shrimp Linguine, which probably had a fancy name I've forgotten. The chowder was above average but not extraordinary. The "Shrimp New Orleans" was an interesting blend of spicy shrimp with jasmine rice and a sweet sauce. We shared the MOST AMAZING bread pudding ever for desert.

...And then the bill came. My sweet Lord! This place is EXPENSIVE. We could have ate at Anchos three times for what this place cost us. Happy Birthday, indeed. This place was a neat experience, but I doubt they have many regulars.

That's it, thanks. I'm stuffed.

Brian Norwood

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