Wednesday, September 30, 2020

Seafood (BBQ + Music) / FRESH = Saltwater Blues

 

 

By Don Manley & Steve Gimmestad
steve@coastalbreezenews.com

It’s a simple equation and you don’t have to be a mathematician to appreciate it. Gulf seafood – awesome, smoked BBQ and fun music all come together at Saltwater Blues on 951 just south of the I-75 interchange. (Yes, yes, we all know it’s where Cracklin’ Jacks used to be).

Chef Mark Shores, a Lely High School graduate, opened Saltwater Blues in June of this year. He and his wife, Anne, had a couple M&M Down Home Diners in Collier County 14-15 years ago, but closed them. “My wife, last year, said, ‘Why don’t we

Some wonderful people to take care of your evening out. (from left) Alicia Cushman, Jeff Morgan and Sherry Graczyk.

Some wonderful people to take care of your evening out. (from left) Alicia Cushman, Jeff Morgan and Sherry Graczyk.

get back into owning a restaurant.’ She had seen the former Cracklin’ Jacks building was available for lease. We looked into it more and felt it was a great fit. We came up with the concept of Saltwater Blues and decided to make it a Southwest Florida tribute.”

Chef Mark invests heavily in the concept of fresh seafood. He picks up his shrimp from the boats on Pine Island. “There are so many restaurants in this town that say they have fresh,” says Chef Mark. “But I have not been to a restaurant in Naples that has hand-picked, pink Gulf

“Doc” cranks out some great blues music southern style. Doc used to be with the Mambo Brothers.

“Doc” cranks out some great blues music southern style. Doc used to be with the Mambo Brothers.

shrimp.” He also gets crab, both hard and soft shell, locally.

Saltwater Blues also has a special blend of coffee you can’t find anywhere else in the country.

Chef Mark attended the Kendall Culinary Institute in Evanston, IL and spent time working in France, Italy and Spain. He also helped to open Sea Salt on Fifth Avenue in Naples and worked at Celebrations Unlimited. He uses his experience to prepare items for a wide range of palate desires.

“There’s something for everybody,” says Chef Mark. “We have everything from fine-dining dishes to hamburger and BBQ.” Their Firecracker Shrimp has proven to be

Owner/Chef Mark Shores stand next to the smoker which plays  an integral part of the Saltwater Blue menu selections. PHOTOS BY STEVE GIMMESTAD

Owner/Chef Mark Shores stand next to the smoker which plays an integral part of the Saltwater Blue menu selections. PHOTOS BY STEVE GIMMESTAD

very popular. All the sauces are prepared fresh with a dash of innovation.

The perfect compliment to the food and drinks is the live entertainment. “I love blues music, I love great food and I love a relaxed atmosphere,” says Chef Mark. “That’s what we are creating here at Saltwater Blues.”

Currently serving beer and wine, they will be expanding soon and offering full bar service. You can find more information on their Facebook page. They are open daily from 11:30 (closed on Mondays). Stop in for some great, fresh food and stay for the live music. It’s a fun atmosphere perfect for a Southwest Florida experience.

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *