When you live on the Northshore, you have the advantage of getting to many places in a short period of time. One of those places is just 60 miles away to Gulfport, Mississippi. First, it is all about the food and drink.
Stop 1 – The Sweet
The restaurant that was a must on my itinerary is the famous Half Shell Oyster House. While I had visited the Louisiana locations, there is something to be said about experiencing the original. Let me start by saying, this is the place to go for all things oyster, especially charbroiled delicacies. I indulged in the deliciously sweet Oysters Bienville, with added shrimp and crab with the usual mushrooms and bread crumbs. I easily polished off my meal with a to-die-for cinnamon bread pudding smothered in spiced rum sauce. Think Cinnabon meets Captain Morgan. Yum!
Stop 2 – The Sour
It was definitely time for a cold beverage, and I had heard the place to make that happen was Chandeleur lsland Brewing Company. Named after the chain of islands off the Mississippi coast and founded by two Southern Miss alums, this place is part pub, part tropical oasis. The menu features an array of sour brews, which I had not experienced before, except for a Blue Moon or two. I chose their original, the Lil Miss Sour. It was a perfect blend of tangerine and sweetness. With other crafts on the menu, including Guava Jelly and H90 Surfside, I felt like I was in my home state of Florida. A return visit is necessary, as they host an annual ChandyFest at the end of March with an actual bed race. I am sure the beer will be flowing that day.
Gulfport has a reputation for fantastic, down-home places to eat, drink and be merry. If these two places are any indication of the city’s offerings, it is a well-deserved one.