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The Pub Crawler: Frenchy’s Café

The Clearwater Beach eatery serves up more than seafood. Beach-bound customers can enjoy 21 different types of beer or myriad mix drinks.

In this economy, with so many businesses closing due to high overhead and low sales, restaurants have been among those hardest hit by the recession.

But down on Clearwater Beach, not only is the Frenchy’s empire surviving, apparently it’s thriving.

Established in 1981 by Mike “Frenchy” Preston and his business partner, the cozy Frenchy’s Café was designed as a place beachgoers could enjoy fresh seafood in a casual environment.

The success of the café led to a series of offshoots, including the in 1989 and the popular Gulf-front attraction, , in 1991.

Soon the demand to provide enough fresh seafood to supply the restaurants grew too great, so Frenchy’s launched its own supply source, Frenchy’s Seafood Company.

The amazing thing through all this growth and expansion of the brand is that the core values of the franchise remained intact; to this day, Frenchy’s is the place to go on the beach to enjoy great seafood in a relaxed atmosphere.

So what is the draw of Frenchy’s that's kept customers coming in for 30 years?

Well you have to start with the grouper, which is caught fresh daily and is the staple of Frenchy’s menu.

At Frenchy’s you can get your grouper on in a number of different ways: in the seafood gumbo, as a sandwich prepared five different ways, in the tasty , or as an appetizer in the form of grouper cheeks.

But don’t be fooled into thinking all Frenchy’s does is the flaky Gulf fish; shrimp, clams, mussels, burgers, chicken sandwiches, turkey Reubens and homemade Key Lime pie are also on the menu.

Twenty-one different beers and a killer Bloody Mary also highlight the menu, and each day of the week means a different food & drink special at Frenchy’s as well.

For example, on Tuesdays you can get their original Baja tacos for $1.50 each with a salty Margarita on the side for $2.95. Fridays bring a fried shrimp basket for $5.95 with a $3.95 Martini.

No matter what you order or when you go, you will always be able to soak up the beach vibes while dining on a delicious Frenchy’s dish.

And if you don’t feel like heading back home afterward, you can always book a room at Frency’s Oasis motel a block away.

Frenchy’s Café

41 Baymont Street

Hours: from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily

Call: (727) 446-3607

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