Yes, my five star rating and title are a bit sarcastic, but unfortunately true.
There is one and only one thing that makes or break a seafood restaurant - the freshness of the seafood. Seafood will not keep for very long unfrozen, and if it is frozen with anything less than the best flash freezing technology, it will change in flavor and texture. Restaurants that cut corners by keeping frozen seafood for too long, or worse yet, thawing and then refreezing seafood multiple times, are going to deliver putrid seafood.
And so the BEST seafood restaurants anywhere are to be found in coastal areas (I am not a fan of freshwater fish) where fresh catches come in daily at the local harbor or fish market and are never frozen.
The second best seafood restaurants are to be found at restaurants that maintain high standards by not trying to cut corners with the seafood. In order to do this, the restaurant has to have a strong flow of customers constantly churning through the stocks of seafood stored in the freezers.
And this Red Lobster does that. The place is consistently filled with customers. The quality of the seafood is consistently good, not the best ever in the world but EASILY the best seafood restaurant in Laredo. (Any restaurant along coastal Maine will be better for fresh lobster, many in Seattle/Vancouver will be better for fresh salmon, geoduck, abalone, etc., most restaurants in Maui will be better for fresh Opah or Tuna or Mahi Mahi).
Which is kind of sad, to see that it takes a franchised operation, following the national standards of a large corporation, to deliver somewhat decent seafood here in Laredo.
Many Red Lobsters around the country have fared poorly in the last few years, probably because they are competing with many stronger local restaurants and no longer have the high flow of customers needed to cycle through all that frozen seafood. And so the financial/business news of late has been full of stories about how Red Lobster is doomed as a restaurant chain, and will someday no longer be around.
Which would be too bad, if this one here in Laredo closes, because then there won't be any decent seafood places in Laredo at all.
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