Fresh seafood is waiting for you at thebeach—and, no, you don’t have to catch it yourself. Tucked into a strip mall, Two Dudes Seafood Restaurant in Atlantic Beach is probably the last place you’d expect to find fresh, delicious seafood. Well, kick your judgy nature to the curb, because this place is delicious.
It’s all about the surf at Two Dudes, so it’s no surprise that beach and surfing paraphernalia line the walls. There’s also a very important, central, giant chalkboard on one wall. Its job is to inform us of all the seafood that’s available that day. Pompano, scallops, snapper, grouper, sheepshead … and that’s only the beginning. This comprehensive list is crucial when making a dining decision, so read it. The menu is appropriately themed, as well. Choose from among items like the Goofy Foot Seafood Platter ($23), surfing slang that means you lead with your right foot, or the giant one-pound Hodaddy Burger ($14), a term, as my surf-savvy dining companion informed me, for someone who doesn’t surf, but masquerades as such. A poser.
From the plethora of glorious seafood, we chose the Goofy Foot combo platter, which lets you pick two sea creatures and two sides. We went classy and scooped up blackened scallops and shrimp. Three large scallops and a half-dozen shrimp were served with a heap of wasabi mango slaw that had a nice zing to it and hushpuppies–crisp and not too sweet. The juicy shrimp were well-blackened, with a perfect seasoned crust. The tender scallops were buttery, with a little extra zip from the blackening seasoning sprinkled on top.
In my family, a fish taco is a must when available. Across the ditch, it’s practically a law to order the savory wrapped fish, so Two Dudes’ Baja Key West Mahi Tacos with aioli drizzle ($13) was a given. Two tacos are stuffed with mahi, flavored with a mysterious, if-I-told-you-I’d-have-to-kill-you marinade. Usually, I press for details of ingredients, but I let it slide this time–that marinade really is tasty enough to kill for.
Let me talk about the fries. Occasionally, here at Bite-Sized, I get the chance to inhale … I mean, enjoy really amazing fries; Two Dudes is among the few on that list. They aren’t cut in house, BUT my taste buds overruled me because, boy, do they know how to fry ’em: light, crisp and golden with a peppery flair. We nearly threw down for the last few!
The homemade-style “Totally Yum, No Bake Key Lime Pie” ($5) is the ideal finish to a true beachside meal. Make your way to either the Atlantic Beach or Ponte Vedra Two Dudes, crack open a cold one and indulge in a light, beachy, dining experience.
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