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

J.L. TRENT'S SEAFOOD
JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA

We continue our quest to find the best fried seafood platter in Northeast Florida and somebody recommended this place.  There are actually three of them and this one is located very near the Naval Air Station in Jacksonville in an area of town known as Yukon.  How it got that name, I have no idea.  I meant to ask but I forgot.

Upon entering this rustic fish camp type restaurant, there were only two other tables occupied.  We were a little concerned but then again, this was a holiday---Memorial Day Monday at lunch time---and we were actually surprised to find the place was even open.


I Told You It Was Rustic!

The menu was absolutely typical of these types of places.  Loads of fried seafood, gator, stuffed fish dishes, etc.  Our server brought us a small container of fish spread and some crackers, again, quite common at these joints and we placed an appetizer order for some gator bites.

The gator was piping hot and flavorful.  Not the best we've ever had but still pretty good.


Typical Interior For A Florida Fish Camp Type Joint

For my main course I ordered the seafood platter for one and two sides---black-eyed peas and grits.  Yes grits!  Get over it.  They're damned good.  You otta try 'em again and then reassess your position on 'em!!!!

My wife ordered a stuffed flounder, cole slaw and fries.

My seafood platter came with two long and skinny fish filets, several shrimp, a few scallops, a deviled crab and fried clam strips.  Naturally they threw in some hushpuppies, as well.  The fish, while it looked weird, was pretty good.  The shrimp were also pretty good.  The scallops were okay.  Ditto for the oysters.  Nothing horrible, nothing great.  The deviled crab cake, however, was not good.  It was not hot in temperature, didn't appear to contain any crab at all and smelled downright strange.  I took one bite and that was it.  The hushpuppies tasted like dirty bathwater and I didn't like the batter they used.  I don't know how to describe it but it was more like streaky flakes rather than smooth, nice batter.  It just wasn't my cup of tea.

My wife's stuffed flounder was okay but just okay.  Her remark:  "I've gotta remember to stop ordering stuffed fish. It always sounds so good but it hardly every comes out nicely done."  She's right, especially in this part of Florida.  And we're especially spoiled having eaten at the legendary Gaido's in Galveston, Texas.  They have the best stuffed fresh flounder with fresh blue crab lump meat on the planet!

Of all the fried seafood joints in Northeast Florida, this one would get probably a 4 on a scale of 1-10 with 10 being the best.  We had heard a lot of positive comments about this place.  Too bad our experience wasn't better.  Maybe your meal will be.  Hope so!

This branch is located at 4553 120th street in Jacksonville.  Map quest it.