‘Watts for Dinner’: Seafood soiree and ‘event’ pricing

Will Watts
A crab cake and a coconut shrimp skewer from Blackjax.

Instead of our usual sit-down dinner, this week we look back at the Marco Island Seafood & Music Fest, more specifically at some of the offerings.

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Blackjax’s (the way they spell it, although the s is kind of not necessary) Cajun Seafood was selling a skewer of coconut shrimp for $15, and a crab cake for $10. Each came with your choice of salad or French fries.

The coconut shrimp looked quite enticing, but definitely “event” priced. Each skewer had four jumbo shrimp. A word of warning: always check to see if the tails remain intact. There should be a law for shrimp that are breaded and skewered, in a soup or a salad that states “must have the tails removed before being served.”

Do you like Mexican street corn? How about sweet corn and Cheetos, Doritos, or cheddar, bacon and ranch?

Perhaps it’s because I eat very little in the way of deep-fried foods, but I had a bit of trouble tasting the shrimp. I’m told that’s not the point. I’ll let you decide. Perhaps deep-fried coconut tofu then?

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Ten dollars for a single crab cake you ask?! Yup, “event” pricing, remember? But it was a large crab cake, and had it contained more crab, the dish might have been worth it. But if you are a fan of breading, or sauce, then it’s a treat.

At this point in the review, I should note that people were walking around with footlong corn dogs, pulled pork sandwiches and the like, so it’s not just a seafood festival. For instance, the food item that won the day for me was the sweet corn vendor and the food with a Latin flair. I picked the Mexican street corn ($7, “event” pricing), with cream, cheese and chili pepper; and it was amazing. The unnamed stand offered many varieties on the cob or in a cup, including ones dusted in Cheetos, Doritos, or cheddar, bacon and ranch.

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I have it on good authority that the rum runners were pretty great; even though the Margaritas were “less so.” But you didn’t hear it from me.

Perhaps it was the music, the artists peddling their wares or just the vast collection of food (and sorry Lobsta Mobsta, your line was just too long), but if I’m in Southwest Florida this time next year, I’ll be back for more.   

This newspaper pays for all meals related to dining reviews. We do not solicit or accept free food.