More than just the menu item that's expected to become the signature dish at the new The Big Ketch Saltwater Grill in Buckhead, the "'sure to be famous' fresh blackened grouper sandwich" (on the menu for $11.95) is also the reason owner Chris Hadermann wanted to open the restaurant in the first place:
"I'm originally from Clearwater, Florida and ever since living in Atlanta I've been longing for a place to get a fresh grouper sandwich," he says. And so his new restaurant is an homage to the laid-back, beach shacks of his youth and, of course, features the sandwich he most craves.
The grouper is available blackened, grilled or fried. I asked for mine to be prepared the way most likely to become famous, which turned out to be blackened, topped with a slice of tomato and lettuce, and a thick layer of what's described as tartar sauce but tastes like mayo. Alongside I ordered the yogurt-citrus slaw.
The fish is flaky and the sandwich good if rather bland for my palate. But then I had an inspired idea: I scraped all the mayo/tartar sauce off the sandwich, tossed aside the tomato and lettuce and piled on some of the spicy slaw. Divine. That's a sandwich I'll be craving and exactly how I'll order it be prepared from now on.
The restaurant décor conveys that of upscale Southeastern beach venues with a relaxed vibe.
Bottom line: Value-priced quality seafood, expertly prepared and served in a casual, family-friendly setting.