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Bayes Southern Bar and Grill at The Wharf in Orange Beach, Alabama.By John Mullen
September 23, 2017 – Orange Beach, AL (OBA) – There’s something folksy about being Southern and Bayes Southern Bar and Grill embraces the reference in the name.
“We put a big emphasis on the word Southern,” General Manager Daniel Unda said. “Southern, in our opinion, comprises kindness, hospitality and good food, some of the best things that you hear whenever the word Southern comes into play. With the term Southern, we want to make sure we provide that to our guests. A good environment, being hospitable to them and put out great food.”
Bayes is the first Alabama restaurant for the Volland Group which owns restaurants in Louisiana and is based in Baton Rouge. It is in the same building as the Springhill Suites by Marriott at the west end of The Wharf entertainment complex.
“We have fine dining restaurants, casual, family-oriented restaurants and we also have oyster bars,” Unda said. “Bayes is a combination of those concepts because put into one and we’re at the beach. We have oyster shuckers, we have delicious baked oysters, char-broiled oysters. We have a lot of Southern cuisine.”
Bayes signature dish, Fish of The Wharf.
Put a little Louisiana on your plate, Unda says, with the restaurant’s signature dish, Fish of The Wharf. It’s the fish of the day with bayou twist.
“It is our local fresh fish, whatever we have as fresh,” Unda said. “We serve that over a corn maque choux. It’s a Cajun dish primarily made out of corn. It has Tasso ham and your holy trinity which is bell peppers, celery and onions.
“We cook that down until everything is nice and soft and all the flavors have combined and the pork has seasoned the vegetables with delicious juices and fat. We braize that a little bit with wine, salt and pepper, garlic and shallots. We add green beans and top it off with the fresh fish on top, fried or grilled, finished off with a butter sauce made in-house.”
Fresh is an important word at Bayes, too, where everything is made from scratch. Including all sauces and dressings.
“Very few things we buy prepackaged,” Unda said. “We really believe in fresh. You can tell the difference here. We even cut our own deli meats right here in-house. It provides a freshness that you want to make sure you get, especially in such a seasonal area.”
Bayes shrimp po' boy.
Unda believes the customer can taste and feel the freshness and he and his staff strive to keep them coming back no matter what the season.
“You want to make sure you provide the same type of service, same quality of food as you would in November as you would in the middle of July,” he said. “That’s what we want to separate us from everybody else.”
Special attention is provided to every dish on the menu and every effort at service, Unda said.
“Our number one thing that we always, always make an effort on is the quality of food we serve here,” he said. “Our steaks are center cut from Chicago, aged 28 days. All of our seafood, we get as fresh as we can. All of our shrimp is from the Gulf.”
With the fresh, quality food, he says Bayes can keep customers coming by paying attention to the details, things customers may not see at first, but realize the extra touches before they leave.
“We try to do the small things that people sometimes may not notice but they go a long way, particularly toward having return guests,” Unda said. “That’s what we want to do.”
Bayes is fast approaching its Oct. 17 one-year anniversary in Orange Beach and Unda says the goal is to become a strong culinary and community presence for years to come.
“We want to make sure we’re not just here for one year, two years, three years,” he said. “We want to be part of the community. We have been involved with numerous charities events here from Mardi Gras krewes like the Pink Stilettos and Sirens of the Sea. Also, charities like the Make A Wish Foundation, the MS Foundation, St. Jude’s. Wherever we go we want to make sure we are part of the community, not just an event.”
For more information on Bayes Southern Bar and Grill, check out our restaurant listings.