Restaurant Review – Laishley Crab House, Punta Gorda

We wanted to meet up with a couple of friends who are staying at a place near Sarasota. So we met halfway at the Laishley Crab House in Punta Gorda. Its like a 40 minute carefree kind of drive going north on I-75 as opposed to going south on I-75 into the belly of the beast of Ft Myers traffic.

First thing I’m going to talk about is the drinks. I went here with every expectation that I wasn’t going to have anything alcoholic, but I got swept up in good mood, laughs and all the happy times we shared with our friends while we were living in Chicago back in the day. So I ordered my favorite go to drink, a dry Southern Comfort Manhattan on the rocks with an olive. I’ve tried ordering these here in Florida and no place has gotten it right until here! I first asked our waiter if they even had Southern Comfort because not every bar does. Our waiter yelled across the outdoor patio to the bartender, “you got So Co?”. To which the bartender replied, “Sure do!”. I didn’t know Southern Comfort was called So Co down here. Maybe that’s why I haven’t had any luck finding it?! Anyway, the drinks were perfect! And I got three olives! Bonus land! The ladies had umbrella drinks and they liked them. My friend Patrick got a beer, so we’re all good!

Now for the food. Patrick and I decided on getting a Calamari Appetizer. I asked the ladies if they wanted an appetizer for themselves and they said “no, we’re not that hungry”. So the Calamari comes and the ladies descend on it like a cloud of locusts! I was lucky I got 3 pieces! Anyway, the Calamari was very good.

For entrees, we got Blackened Grouper, Coconut Shrimp Appetizers (for the ladies because they weren’t so hungry!), a dinner salad, a side of mashed potatoes and I got the Seafood Trio for $35, which included Grouper, Scallops and Shrimp. Everything was really good! Except the side of mashed potatoes were on the cool side and were a little dry. We asked for more butter so my wife could dress up the potatoes a little bit and that worked. Which reminded us, our waiter said he was going to bring us bread, but never did. When we got the extra butter, we asked where’s the bread. So he got us bread and it was delicious. Be sure to get bread with your meal!

Next up was desserts, and they were pretty good. a Key Lime Pie and a slice of peanut butter pie. All were devoured! So all in all, a pretty good place. I know its in Punta Gorda, but the drive is not that bad. The place is huge. They have a separate party room for a large private party and long tables for parties of 10 or 20. There’s even a Sushi Bar! Here’s a link to their website. Check out their menus. This is another place that won’t seat you until everybody in the party is there. But the big party room had people streaming in 2 or 4 at a time. I guess that rule is just for us small fries!