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Day Trips

Little cafe in Winnie has big flavor

By Gerald E. McLeod, Fri., May 3, 2013

Day Trips
Photo by Gerald E. McLeod

Al-T's Seafood & Steak Rest­aurant in Winnie combines the best of Texas and Cajun cuisines. Since 1984, locals have sworn by it and travelers on I-10 keep coming back to the little cafe south of the interstate.

Like any small town roadhouse, the service and the food can be spotty. When Al-T's is hitting on all cylinders and their A-team is working in the kitchen, there is no dinner table better between Houston and the Sabine River.

My personal favorite from the menu is the homemade boudin. It was so good, I ate the second link cold for breakfast the next morning. But it was a spotty night for the crawfish étouffée and gumbo. Like any good Louisiana-inspired eatery, the cafe also has catfish, oysters, alligator, and frog legs.

A friend of mine, who lives down the road from Al-T's, eats there regularly with his wife. He usually gets the rib-eye steak with shrimp; his wife gets the broiled fish. The chicken-fried steak is truly wonderful, my friend says; it's as big as a truck tire and as heavy as a boat anchor. For something unique, he recommends the "Dirty Herbie." A mixture of étouffée and chunks of rib eye over a bed of dirty rice, it's as Tex-Cajun as you can get.

Al-T's Restaurant is at Exit 829, south of I-10 on TX 124. They can be reached at 409/296-9818.

1,135th in a series. Collect them all. Day Trips, Vol. 2, a book of "Day Trips," is available for $8.95, plus $3.05 for shipping, handling, and tax. Mail to: Day Trips, PO Box 33284, South Austin, TX 78704.

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