I have been told that several eager restaurateurs in and around the Fairhope area, who have been watching and waiting for the owner of the landmark Yard Arm restaurant to hang up his apron. After all, it had first opened for business in 1981 following the devastation of Hurricane Frederick. Unfortunately, for those folks lining up at the chance to snag this premiere location were beat to the punch by the Gambino Family. The family patriarch, Rick Gambino, has been a long-time staple of our local culinary history, having opened Gambino’s Italian Grill in a beautiful setting on Scenic Highway 98 back in the 1970’s. Rick left the business in 2002, only to return to the helm in 2012 due to the persistent nagging of his son, Josh and the fact that they had been unable to find a sustainable tenant with their same passion for the restaurant business and consistency in the kitchen.
“Oysters are more popular today than they ever have been and we are going to cook them right in front of people,” Rick Gambino explained to me, while the renovation sounds of saws and hammers competed for our attention. The refurbished the dining area and added a separate oyster bar area, with 2-foot grill for sizzling the oysters right before your eyes. They also added an expansive deck area over Mobile Bay, which is a great spot to enjoy a sunset and a bay breeze. The Shux menu is predominately seafood, with steamed snow crab legs and royal reds, in addition to raw, flame-grilled and char-grilled oysters. They are also bringing over some of their signature steaks from the Gambino’s Italian Grill menu, as well as beautiful “French-Style” pork chop.
A large group from the Jason Will Real Estate Team dined at Shux, and although they were still working some of the kinks out in the kitchen, I was impressed with the menu items and excited about what the future holds for this new Fairhope hot-spot! Our waitress highly recommended either the shrimp tacos or the crab cakes and fried green tomatoes. My wife, Diana, ended up going with the crab cakes but I was all about the oysters and I gotta tell ya that the Cajun flam-grilled oysters with the Cajun compound butter for dipping will have you wanting to lick the bottom of the ramekin!