Summer Shack Attack!

On our way home from seeing our cousins, we stopped at a casino…doesn’t every family?  Oh wait…they don’t?  Well, let me tell ya something-we don’t smoke, don’t steal, and don’t drink(much!), but as we put it…the family that gambles together stays together!  There is somehting about the sound of bells and whistles going off all around a casino that gets my heart racing and my blood pumping.  The minute I walk onto the floor and inhale the scent of cigarette smoke mingled with desperation and hope…I feel at home.  I can spend HOURS at a penny machine or a $2 blackjack table.  Of course I love to win, but even when I lose…I just love the thought that MAYBE i will win.  It’s the possiblity in the air.  That’s what I love about gambling.  My name is Sarah and I am a gamble-aholic
…oh, wait…wrong blog…
Anyway…so after a couple of hours of this:
It was time for some of this:
Jasper White’s Summer Shack, convieniently located in the Mohegan Sun Casino Resort (even saying casino…makes me kinda…hot and bothered…) is an offshoot of the well known chef’s popular seafood shack in Cambridge, MA.  It is just what it says it is-a seafood shack-albeit a huge, nicely laid out one-that serves the freshest fish in all sorts of preparations.

The restaurant is large and informal with a huge open air kitchen.

Tanks full of feisty live lobsters,  just waiting to be steamed and dunked in butter!

The daily specials listed on the menu-look how many different preparations of lobster were available!
We started out with the classic New England Clam Chowder.  Perfect.  Thick, creamy, filled with silky potatoes and sweet, briney clams.  Topped with just a smattering of parsley…this is what you think of when you think of clam chowder.  

Chock full of wonderful clams with just a hint of smokiness from the undertones of bacon.  I thought it was perhaps a bit bland-I prefer a more “seafood-y” chowder-but it was a very good bowl of chowder.  My sister just loved it.

clams on the half shell.  Now THESE were some clams!!!!  Topped with slightly sweet, slightly nasal passage clearing cocktail sauce, they invaded my mouth with the fresh salinity that only shellfish brings.  Tender in texture, cold in temperature, and simply…refreshing…..  These clams are the standard to which all others should be held.  I ate 3 and could have eaten 12 more.

If only I was fast enough.
 You didn’t think we weren’t going to get fried clams, did you?  Fools.
These were simply great.  Is it actually impossible to get a BADLY FRIED clam in the state of CT?  I’m starting to think that is the case…these were crispy outside, positively creamy within, salty, meaty, and fresh with a squirt of lemon.  They really didn’t need any of the excellent tartar sauce on the side.  They just needed my mouth.  Please get these if you come here.  You will become a seafood LOVER.
My sister got the Mussels Arribiata.  WHOA-these were the BEST MUSSELS I have had in a while.  SO GOOD!!!  Each mussel was soft, creamy, without a trace of minerality or grit, just a sweet, oceany taste.  And the sauce…oh the SAUCE…garlicky, oniony, tomatoey heaven that was so spicy my sister’s nose was running.  That’s how we like it.  These were FAB!!!
I chose the Portugese Haddock with tomatoes, peppers, onions, and olives.  Guess what?  I love haddock!  Ok, I know I love everything..no comments from the peanut gallery, please!  But really…what a fab rish!!  Firm and flakey, but not as firm as cod, haddock has a mild, non fishy taste that takes well to a preparation such as this.  The salty olives, acidic  tomatoes, sweet onions, and hearty peppers all blended to create a piquant, umami rich sauce that complimented and added to the fish’s delicate flavor.  With perfectly steamed jasmine rice, this dish was a total winner.
Marmie got a lobster.  It was sweet and buttery.  So is she.
What a delicious meal!!  The prices were definitely a bit steep, but hey…you are in a casino…you either have money to blow or are so far in the hole, you might as well just charge one final “hurrah” to your already defunct card anyway!  The seafood could not have been any fresher if I had caught it myself, and was prepared in simply delicious ways.  I will be coming back here for sure…oh yeah, and I will be eating at the restaurant too ;)  Gamblers anon.  Totally.

Comments

  1. Velva says:

    I enjoyed this post! The food at the Shack looks wonderful. No doubt that the family who gambles together, stays together. Good food helps too!

    Cheers to you.
    Velva

  2. Joanne says:

    Nothing like a nice family casino trip to round out the vacation! My family's motto is "the family that fights together stays together". i like yours better.

    Mmm clam chowder. Can't visit new england without it.

  3. Fritos and Foie Gras says:

    @Velva-thank you so much!!! The food is so delicious there-I highly recommend it. Have a wonderful weekend!
    @Joanne-oh don't worry, that is our other family motto. I feel like our families were seperated at birth…

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