Fat Catz Kitchen
Southeast Crossing Center
3320 Troup Highway, Ste. 170
Tyler, TX 75701
Fat Catz is a "Cajun" restaurant located just north of the loop off of Troup Highway. The location is one of my favorites because there are five or six decent restaurants all within a stone's throw of one another. Fat Catz has a relatively unassuming exterior that leads into a nice interior space. They have a cozy bar area and an open dining room.
The spread: The menu is Cajun/seafood based. The appetizers are unique to Tyler ranging from fried alligator, fried frog legs, fried calamari, fried shrimp, fried pickles, fried okra, fried jalapenos, boudain, crawfish (fried, boiled), and seafood fondue. They also offer several kinds of salads and a couple kinds of gumbo. The entrees are also somewhat unique with a wide selection of poboys, myriad of fried seafood/chicken, and items from the grill - steaks, chicken etc. They also offer some more Cajun inspired dishes such as red beans and rice, jambalaya, etoufee, etc. I didn't go for any desserts, but they range from pecan pie, beignets, and bread pudding to name a few.
The verdict: Well, I was disappointed. Perhaps because I have a high standard for Cajun food, I expected a lot from this place (given we are only two hours from Louisiana). The food was average to slightly above average. The fried items were pretty good, cooked right and served hot. The seafood gumbo, etoufee and jambalaya were all disappointingly bland. Perhaps I just got them on a bad night, but their "Cajun" food was lackluster. Perhaps my biggest complaint was the prices for the quality. I am not sure, but the seafood tasted like Sysco pre-frozen stuff. Plus, a Poboy cost 10 bucks!!! The place has a nice 'party' atmosphere and the staff was attentive, but nothing makes up for bland, expensive food.
Edible Tyler Roses: 2 out of 5; If you go, stick to the fried items and beer.