Hidden Treasures

Three delicious ways to beat the summer heat

By: Sylvia Slezak

Looking for a place to cool off, unwind and satiate your taste buds? You don’t need to leave Corpus Christi to enjoy various cultural flavors. Here are three ways to discover or rediscover “hidden treasures” found in the Coastal Bend community.

Our first stop is more than just a restaurant and bar. It is the only place in Corpus Christi where you can sail, shop and dine all in the same shaded waterfront location. Welcome to Harrison’s Landing, the home of the Tavern on the Bay, Cathy’s Boutique and Gifts and the Yachting Center. This place offers something for everyone with a variety of activities suitable for locals and visitors alike.

Attractions at Harrison’s Landing:
• Beer school, appetizer pairings and wine dinners
• Private room and waterfront meeting rentals
• Full moon cruises with live music
• Captained sailing and bay fishing charters
• Party boats, private party, sailing and dinner cruises
• Sunset/harbor bridge, dolphin watching and Corpus Christi Bay tours
• Intro to sailing mini course – an interactive experience
• Team building on the water

Enjoy Corpus Christi Bay from the water’s perspective. Kick back and relax and let your stress melt away with the gentle rocking of the waves and the sights and sounds of the water. After the cruise, enter the only place in town that has a floating gift shop, tiki bar and dining area. Complete your day with a little shopping and a memorable meal at Tavern on the Bay. Choose from a delicious assortment of seafood, salads, burgers, appetizers and more. Order a frosty beer or margarita and relax.

Our second stop is intended to satiate your sweet tooth with something from another country. At JB’s German Bakery & Café, you can grab your choice of “sweet” desserts and a beverage, then head outside to watch the sunset over the water. They are ideally located on Padre Island by the water, bringing a taste of Germany to South Texas.

With 30-plus years of traditional German-baking experience, owners Juergen and Brigitte Kazenmayer have brought the original tastes, aromas and joys of German breads, pastries, pies and cakes to the Coastal Bend.

The café offers daily specials for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Start off with breakfast by building your omelet with a garden pepper, mushrooms, ham, bacon, onions and potatoes. If there’s still room, add French toast and bratwurst. A nice hot cup of coffee or cappuccino goes great with the meal. Their lunch and dinner choices just might bring out the connoisseur in you.

Authentic German menu:
• Fleischkaese, bratwurst or schnitzel
• Reuben sandwich (corned beef, sauerkraut on rye)
• Jaegerschnitzel with homemade spaetzle
• Fleischküchle or brezel roll sandwich
• Schweinebraten and traditional German salad

You don’t need a translator for these, only an appetite. The aroma that surrounds the plate will blend with your taste buds and translate into D-E-L-I-C-I-O-U-S. Sit down, order and enjoy the original aromas and tastes from Germany.

Our last stop is a trip to the old country where we find Frank’s Spaghetti House, one of Corpus Christi’s best-kept secrets. Housed in an old home built in 1921, the architecture is that of yesteryear, with brick construction and foot-thick walls. Frank came to Corpus Christi from Sicily by way of Chicago and World War II, U.S. Navy service.

Frank’s mother taught him to cook. Later, Frank taught Sue Moody and her family before his retirement in 1973. Sue Moody passed on the family legacy to her son, Mike, in 1993. She retired and resides in Mesa, Ariz.

Mike Moody’s three children are now running the restaurant fulltime. Vanessa, the oldest, gets her children involved in learning the ways of the restaurant; Michael, the middle child, has mastered the kitchen; and Matthew, the youngest is the business manager. Matthew’s wife, Teresa, works with Vanessa to create all of the scrumptious desserts from cheesecakes to tiramisu and many more in between. The Moody family has been proudly serving the Coastal Bend community for generations.

Frank’s Spaghetti House serves authentic Italian food made with fresh local ingredients and a guarantee that you’ll be delighted from the first sip of wine to the last bite of cannoli. They are known for their crispy, delicious chicken parmesan, Italian wines, fresh salads, handmade pasta and rum-soaked tiramisu.

Frank’s dinner options to stimulate your appetite:
• Cheese crostini
• Fried calamari, mushrooms or mozzarella
• Lasagna, manicotti or ravioli
• Chicken cacciatora, parmesan or fettuccine alfredo
• Veal or shrimp parmesan
• Shrimp fettuccine alfredo

While our journey together has ended, your summer fun adventures have just begun. Stay cool, be safe and have an awesomely blessed summer.

dk_photo/bigstock.com

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