Living in Mississippi, I have seen my fair share of t-shirts from Tacky Jacks, putting this restaurant on the map for me. My friends (Carly and Rachael) and I thought that we would check it out while on vacation in Orange Beach. Tacky Jacks has been open for 36 years, and with their waterfront dining and sandy beach play area for children it is easy to see why.
Two Hour Wait
Tacky Jacks was on a two-hour wait when we arrived. Since it is summer, we figured that every restaurant would be just as busy and opted to wait. Luckily for us, Tacky Jacks has a bar called “Jacks Oyster Bar” around back where we could order a drink while we waited. Carly and I ordered a Fruity Pebbles and it was really good. The bartenders seemed to be having a rough evening as they dropped almost everything that they touched while we were standing at the counter. Oops! Carly, Rachael, and I also enjoyed sitting in the rocking chairs facing the water and people watching. Lucky for us, we only ended up waiting for about an hour.
We were starving by the time that we were seated. Rachael had the Firecracker Shrimp (shrimp coated in Asian chili sauce) while Carly opted for a Buffalo Chicken Wrap as she does not eat seafood. I ordered the Half and Half with fish, shrimp, hushpuppies, and french fries. Neither my fish nor my shrimp were very good. I was disappointed that we waited two hours for mediocre food. Rachael liked her shrimp but Carly agreed that her wrap was pretty basic.
Tacky Jacks is covered in Duct Tape. Literally! Guests can go to the upstairs hostess and pick up a piece of Duct Tape to write on. After choosing what to say, guests pick a spot (anywhere but on the doors) throughout the restaurant to place their tape. It is a really cool concept! We had a lot of fun reading all of the tapes that we came across.
There is a gift shop on property that you have to check out. They have mannequins dressed in Duct Tape and the clothing designs are really creative. Loads of Tacky Jacks’ paraphernalia can be found here and it seemed as if every guest stopped in.
OBA locals love Tacky Jacks
The atmosphere at Tacky Jacks is very laid back and fun. They feature live entertainment and happy hour weekdays from 2-6 PM. Tacky Jacks is so popular that they have three locations in the area (Gulf Shores, Orange Beach, Fort Morgan). Boaters eat here because they have docks on the water which makes getting to the restaurant incredibly easy. It is also a great spot for families because there is a sandpit out back that children seemed to be having a great time playing in.
Maybe we came on a bad night, but I did not have a great Tacky Jacks experience. There seemed to be a lot of confusion among the staff when it came to seating guests, our service was not very good, and I though that the food was mediocre. After my visit, I would give Tacky Jacks a rating of 6/10. I think that most people probably come for the atmosphere.
240 East 24th Avenue
Gulf Shores, AL 36542
Taylor Pittman wrote this article.
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