The Blow Fly Inn is known across South Mississippi, so when changes came to the 56-year-old institution over the summer, news spread.
To anyone who worried about the quality of food or the ambiance at the famous eatery, don’t. The Blow Fly Inn is as good as it’s ever been.
The interior of the restaurant is largely unchanged, though some new art has been added and some updated neon signs. The beer selection now features new locally brewed beers, and some changes were made to the menu. They streamlined the selections to accommodate for changes going on in the restaurant back in the summer, but many Coast favorites remain.
“We’re about to expand back to the full menu after a couple of months of a smaller one. We expect to be back to the full menu very soon,” manager Kim Douglas said.
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The Blow Fly Inn offers daily lunch specials and daily blue plate specials that rotate, so each day of the week is about a different flavor.
Specials include red beans and rice with fried catfish ($10), a fried shrimp and catfish combo with fries ($11) and crab cake and side salad ($11).
My dining partner and I befriended a woman eating dinner with her husband at the next table. She ordered the crab cakes and kept complimenting the amount of jumbo lump crab.
“This is the right amount of crab,” she said. “Sometimes there is just too much filler in a crab cake but this has a lot of crab.”
Our meal started with an appetizer order of fried green tomatoes ($7). The seven slices of fresh tomatoes came covered in a light and garlicky remoulade that was topped with finely diced peppers and green onions. The tomatoes were crisp and the batter was light and flavorful without being heavy or greasy.
I ordered the hamburger steak ($12), which came with a side of sauteed vegetables — onions, cauliflower, zucchini, squash, green beans and mushrooms — cooked lightly in butter and a bit of garlic and topped with Parmesan cheese.
The other side was white rice served with brown gravy, the same gravy that covered the hamburger steak. The combination of white rice with gravy was instant comfort-food gratification. It took me right back to a similar dish my mother made while I was growing up. The tender hamburger steak went well with the light vegetables and hearty brown gravy.
My dining partner ordered a rib-eye steak ($26), which came with a baked potato, a small side of sauteed veggies and a generous serving of onions and mushrooms.
The smoke flavor from the grill was apparent and pepper used to season the meat was well proportioned.
The meal also came with complementary cheddar cheese biscuits, served piping hot with whipped butter, which was a truly delicious and savory way to start the meal.
All in all, whatever subtle changes the Blow Fly Inn has made to its menu, all of the same historic charm and lovely views remain, and it is well worth the trip.
If you go
What: Classic Coast cooking, steaks, seafood
Where: 1201 Washington Ave., Gulfport
Hours: Monday-Wednesday 11 a.m.-8 p.m.; Thursday-Saturday 11 a.m.-9 p.m.; Sunday 11 a.m.-4 p.m.