S & D Oyster Company: For Dating,
A Fine Place It is, Yes

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After my last date at a seafood establishment, I was leery to go to another one. But when a new guy suggested S. & D. Oyster Company for our dinner date, I felt relieved and said "of course." If you've never eaten at S. & D. Oyster Company, you must go there...as soon as possible. The restaurant, with it's orange sign and red-and-white checker tablecloths, has lived on McKinney Avenue since 1976.

On Friday and Saturday nights eager patrons line up at the entrance. Families, couples, seniors and large parties all enjoy going to the oyster joint. But you don't have to like raw oysters on the half shell to enjoy eating at S. & D. The restaurant serves shrimp, fish, oyster loaf, gumbo and burgers.

My date at S. & D. happened on a weeknight -- no waiting in line. The host ushered us to our table and introduced us to our waiter wearing the restaurant's uniform: a white shirt, black pants, a black bow tie and a red apron. This date was just the way I wanted it -- uneventful, but uneventful in a good way. We ordered a dozen oysters on the half shell straight away. When your twinkling-eyed waiter asks if he or she can make you your cocktail sauce, say yes, in fact say hell yes. It's entertaining to watch the mixing process, and the sauce tastes so much better than the kind that comes from a bottle.

A date at S. & D. makes for a fun night. Looking around the cozy seafood restaurant, I realized we weren't the only ones having a good time. Plus, the waiters take such good care of you with their excellent service. They're quick with drink refills and bring your courses out in record time. The waiters are always close, but never hovering.

From the moment we sat down, I told my date, no matter what, we had to order the to-die-for homemade lemon pie for dessert. Regardless of how many oysters and shrimp we ate, I wouldn't leave without a slice of the tangy meringue pie. My date kept saying he wasn't a lemon pie guy, while I tried to convince him that he'd become a believer as soon as he took his first bite. "Listen," I said, "it's the best pie, lemon or other kind you'll ever have." Then I went on to tell him that when I threw a party on the McKinney Avenue trolley last year some of my friends unloaded off the trolley at a stop near S. & D. and got back on with a slice of that heavenly pie in a to-go box for me. They knew how much I loved the lemon pie. My date looked at me and questioned which of the two things he'd just heard measured was more odd, throwing a party on a moving trolley car or getting lemon pie to-go in the middle of that party. I started to defend myself and then remembered this same guy just picked me up in his car where he'd set the voice of his GPS device to sound like Yoda. Yes, Yoda. That's different -- right?

But before we could debate about who reigned more weird, our waiter rested the perfect piece of pie on our table and fanned out two forks. "Take the first bite," I urged. My date shrugged and dug in. He wasn't disappointed. "Wow, you're right," he beamed, "this is the best pie." "I know," I said grinning, while gingerly trying to ease the dessert plate in my direction. After destroying the piece of pie to finish every last bite of it, we ended the date all smiles, said we'd like to go out again and agreed to come back to S. & D. Oyster Company one day.

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