In the shadows of the colossal Cowboys Stadium stands a small unassuming seafood restaurant named Fish Bone Grill (formerly Oyster Cracker). This is the place to go if you are in the mood from delicious and tasty fried seafood at a reasonable price!
If you are not looking for it, you are likely to miss it. Especially if you find yourself busy staring at the largest domed stadium in the world. Here is a hint. It is located directly across the street on Collins. There is an outdoor patio with umbrellas that will offer you a great location to take in the 73 acre behemoth.
The parking for Fish Bone is in the rear, as is the entrance. The entrance seems to be an afterthought and you feel like you are about to walk into the kitchen, Instead, you are greeted by Christmas lights and pictures of the local area. There is even a large picture of Cowboys Stadium signed by none other than Jerry Jones himself.
Once in the main portion of the restaurant I was promptly greeted and told to pick any seat I want. I always appreciate that as I am somewhat picky on seating and I prefer the mafia seat.
The main seating area feels a bit like a sports bar with several TV’s, Neon Lights, and a little bar. There was also an air conditioned patio with large windows. It felt a tad warm in there. However, it was 105 degrees outside at the time. So this may well just be due to the limitations of their air conditioning on such a hot day. As previously mentioned, there was also an outdoor patio. No one in their right mind would be sitting out there on the day I went; however, I would very much enjoy a patio with a great view during the spring or fall.
Service was prompt and more than acceptable. However, don’t expect any warm towels or finger bowls. Once we picked a table, I located the high chairs for my son. It would have been nice to have been offered one, but it was also very easy to just grab it myself. There were no cute menus for the kids to color and play games on. This is not a must, but would have been nice to help keep the kids distracted and allow the adults some conversation.
Drinks are self serve and the adult cups are located by the soda fountain. There were crackers located next to the cups. This helped get the kids by until our food was served. Unfortunately, our waitress forgot to bring us the cups for our kids. She did remember on her second trip around when she came to take our food order
Ordering food at Fish Bone is a little different. While they come to your table to take your order, you use a number system to tell them what you want. Almost everything on the menu is fried, and the primary selections are their combo’s. You can choose a two item combo for $9.95 or a three item combo known as The Mate for $12.95.
I love variety, so I went with The Mate of course! I chose popcorn shrimp (#4), clam strips (#7), and stuffed crabs (#9). My wife chose the same, except she chose catfish nuggets (#5) instead of clam strips. Lunch specials range from $5.95 to $6.95. Good luck finding seafood anywhere else in DFW for those prices.
Our food arrived very promptly and was more than what we expected. Our meal came with a small plastic cup of cocktail sauce. However, we both ran out half way through the meal and our waitress was nowhere to be found. She did come back around shortly after we finished eating to see if we needed anything else.
Not only was the quantity large, but everything tasted great! The popcorn shrimp were firm, but not overdone. They had great seasoning, but not so much batter that you couldn’t taste the shrimp inside. This is how popcorn shrimp should taste! The clam strips were rather small pieces, but had a nice flavor. They were a tad chewy, but not rubbery. The stuffed crabs were large and tasty. I would like to have seen more crab meat in the stuffing. However, considering the price, it came with more than I was expecting. The catfish nuggets were tasty and had a fresh taste. The French fries were good and plentiful. Our meals also came with two hush puppies, a cup of cocktail sauce and a lemon.
If you want great fried seafood and are not looking for fancy atmosphere, Fish Bone Grill is the place to go!
Note: I did not go during a Cowboy game. You may want to avoid going to Fish Bone on game day unless you like crowds and traffic.
Location: Fish Bone Grill