Monday, June 13, 2011


We've been ignoring Captain Ratty's.  Several years ago, we ate there and were underwhelmed with the food.   But neighbors and friends have been saying how much they like the restaurant, giving us reason to reconsider when an old, dear friend from New Jersey came into town last week.  Captain Charlie was hired to pilot a boat from Hatteras back to its New Jersey owner.  It had been over ten years since his last visit, and we were excited to see him and meet his new wife, Mary Ann.

Persimmons, our first choice for dinner, was closed (it was Tuesday).  That's when we remembered Captain Ratty's. When I called for reservations, I was told they had a party of 36 on the roof and reservations were not being accepted downstairs.  "Come on in," the spokesperson continued, "there won't be any problem getting you a table."  This made me more than a little nervous, and I envisioned either long lines or poor service, or both, because of the large party upstairs.  But Guy insisted we should try.

We arrived about 6:30 PM.  The place was bustling with activity, but they had a table for us with no wait.  Service was excellent -- and friendly -- and we each raved over our food choices.  

First comes Captain Ratty's special corn muffins, hot, moist and yummy, with the house salad and choice of dressing.  No iceberg lettuce here.  It was a lovely mixture of tender young greens, shredded red cabbage and carrots.

Maryann and I decided on the shrimp and grits.  Shrimp and grits is one of my most favorite entrees ever.  Captain Ratty's shrimp and grits has a unique presentation and has a little more meat than I wanted, but I have to say it was wicked good.  The bacon was fried perfectly and had a sweetness to it.  The kielbasi was very nice, and the shrimp was succulent and huge.  The grits were extra creamy and cheesy.

Captain Charlie got fried shrimp.  They were fried perfectly, nicely crisp and not a bit greasy.  He chose sauteed summer squash for his side.

Guy got grilled shrimp and baked potato.

Several nights later, Guy and I returned to Captain Ratty's to try their shrimp burger, which, surprisingly, isn't made with popcorn shrimp.  Good-sized shrimp (lots of them) are crisp-fried and not greasy.  For $5.95, you also get your choice of side.  Guy got French fries, and I got black bean salsa.  The black bean salsa was delicious, and there was so much, I took the leftovers home along with the corn muffins that we couldn't eat.  We'll be returning to try their fish tacos, crab cakes, fresh catch of the day, and maybe even their burgers or certified Angus beef steaks.  

Captain Ratty's, 202 Middle Street, New Bern, NC, 252-633-2088.  Open Lunch and Dinner, 7 days a week.  Private dining available for rehearsal dinners, special events, and company functions.  Lunch catering available for parties of 10 or more.


  1. Judy, Charlie and I just returned from another transport trip, NJ to Key West, FL with final destination of boat being Grand Cayman. Finally found the time to do a little catching up and came across your blog. Brought back memories of a great visit and also a great dinner! Still thinking about those grits! Look forward to meeting up with you again on one of our future trips. Say hello to Guy from us.

  2. Maryann, So nice to hear from you, and can't wait for a return visit.

  3. I just discovered your blog, and I particularly like this post about Captain Ratty's Restaurant. I will be in New Bern this week for the Antique Show and my husband and I are looking forward to eating at Captain Ratty's. It's a favorite of ours. And I'm happy to have found your blog.

  4. Hi Pat, So glad you came to visit. If you're interested in more recipes, please visit my other blogs, and Judy's Kitchen has hundreds of recipes.

    1. I will definitely check these out. I would love to meet you while we are here and discuss blogging. I'm such a novice at this, and I could get some pointers from you.

    2. Would be happy to meet with you, Pat. What days are you free?

    3. I'll be setting up today, but I hope to be finished by early afternoon. My booth at the show is Lane and Hamilton but I've forgotten what the booth number is. I don't know whether you would like to pop by the Civic Center or I could meet you somewhere. I'll be at the Show Friday through Sunday, but we aren't returning to Raleigh until Monday, so I will be free Monday morning.


When you leave me a comment, I feel all warm and fuzzy, like someone out there is really listening.