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the band of the daily grind  

2013-08-10 11:08:24|  分类: Cherson |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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It's funny to me that there's no popular designation of "vacation restaurant." I suppose every dining room on a cruise ship is technically a vacation restaurant, as is every eatery on the grounds of a theme park. But for the most part, restaurants are multi-purpose, catering equally to locals and tourists, business types and ladies who lunch.

Nonetheless, some restaurants just make you feel like you're on holiday, like you should probably drink a beer or bloody mary at lunch and order dessert, maybe buy a T-shirt. Puckett's Boat House in Franklin is one of those places.

It's hard to put a finger on why this hybrid oyster bar/bait shop/music venue recalls the ease of a seaside crab shack, when it sits two blocks off the square in landlocked Franklin. But history would suggest it has something to do with the Marshall family, who imbue their country-store-casual Puckett's restaurants — including eateries in the downtowns of Nashville, Franklin and Columbia — with an easygoing hospitality outside the band of the daily grind.

Another explanation could be the whimsical design, cribbed from so many Gulf Coast joints brined outside with ocean air and wallpapered inside with the dollar bills of sentimental spring breakers. Somehow, the Boat House captures all that patina without being ticky-tacky. (Actually, the dollar bills are part of a fundraiser for the Heritage Foundation of Franklin and Williamson County.) And the made-from-scratch menu scratches the itch for Southern-style beach cuisine — battered, fried or on the half-shell.

Apalachicola oysters get their own section on the menu, headlining with a half-dozen raw for $8 or a full dozen for $14. If you're suspicious of raw shellfish, or superstitious about months without R's, there's an array of grilled oysters, with toppings such as cheese, chorizo and cilantro; cheese, bacon and jalape?o; and Rockefeller-style spinach.

We did not try the so-called Savannah oysters, tinged with barbecue sauce and served over cheese grits, but after sampling the excellent grits that accompanied one of our seafood baskets, we'll order a half-dozen Savannahs on our next visit.
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