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RESTAURANT OF THE WEEK
A PERSONAL REVIEW OF RESTAURANTS AROUND THE WORLD

FROG'S LANDING
CEDAR KEY, FLORIDA
Note: Humanely this horrid restaurant is gone, replaced by one I'm hearing good things about called Steamers.

This is one of the strangest dining experiences we've ever tried to complete.

We shared a cup of the best crab bisque we've ever tasted on the planet here.  It was thick with fresh blue crab meat, rich, and perfectly flavored with sherry.  I can't tell you anything else about the food here, however.


You Hike Up Stairs To Get To The Restaurant

Let's start from the beginning.  Our attempt to dine at this place came at 2pm on Saturday.  We climbed the stairs to the popular eatery and joined our place in line.  There were four parties ahead of us.  The hostess was extremely and unbelievably inefficient at seating folks.  Finally it was down to two parties and when she escorted the couple ahead of us to their table, the hostess proclaimed:  "Well that's it.  No more available tables.  I'll be back to get your name."  We had waited in line for about 20 minutes at this point.

She took our name and invited us to have a drink at the bar if we would like to do that.  Sounded like a good idea.  We thought we'd sip a Diet Coke and enjoy the beautiful view of the Gulf of Mexico just outside.  The bar tender was just as inefficient as the hostess.  He must have passed by us 6 or 8 times and never took our order.  We could have flagged him down but to be honest we wanted to see when and if he would ever notice us.  He never did!

Our name was called about 20 minutes later and we were finally seated.  Our server got our drink order and I asked for a cup of their crab bisque, which I described above.

The Diet Cokes came about 10 minutes later.  The crab bisque came about 20 minutes after that.  Again, the bisque was absolutely out of this world.  The best seafood soup I've ever had anywhere in the world.  At that point, the waitress took our order.  We both ordered off the lunch menu.  My wife went with a fried seafood platter.  I chose one of their house specials -- two dozen steamed clams in a buttery, marinara sauce and panini bread for dipping.  I had seen several orders of this come out headed for other tables and it looked sensational.

The waiting continued.  About an hour into the wait, our server came over with a grin and said:  "Good things come to those who are patient."  Well I was losing my patience and fast and told her in no uncertain terms that if the food didn't come out fast, we were going to leave.  Her expression changed and she asked me:  "Are you serious?"  My reply:  "I'm dead serious.  Get the food out here fast or we're outta here.  This is ridiculous."  She promised to check on the food.

About seven minutes later and with our waitress nowhere in sight, I summoned another waitress and asked her to tell our server to bring the check and that we'd pay for the Diet Cokes and bisque and that's it.  This second server came back quickly and said in an encouraging voice:  "She's coming with your food right now!"

We looked toward the kitchen and sure enough she was heading out with food.  However she dropped it off at another table.  That was it.  Enough.  We put $15 on the table figuring that would cover the cost of the sodas and bisque and provide her with a very much undeserved tip.

I think the kitchen was probably to blame for this hideous service, among the worst we've ever encountered anywhere. 

Those clams sure looked good going to other tables and we'll be back to visit the quaint little community of Cedar Key.  But we'll never set foot back in this restaurant ever again.  Too bad because the food really did look good.  If you go there on a busy weekend, I'd seriously allow three hours from the time you line up at the door until you finally get your check.

They have a web site here with directions, menu, etc.