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Saturday, September 27, 2014

Mara's Too

A good friend of ours is known to explore new dining options, and she frequently makes recommendations. Her most recent recommendation: Mara's Too in Wantagh.  And I'm glad we listened.

It's a small, storefront place with an adjacent small parking lot. At 8 PM we had no trouble parking, but at lunchtime on Merrick Road ... Parking could be problematic.

Inside there are a handful of tables -- I wouldn't come here with a large group -- and a large bar area. We're not whiskey drinkers, so we skipped over the pages and pages of the menu devoted to that beverage and headed straight for the food -- an interesting mix of Texas/Arkansas barbecue and Louisiana/Cajun cooking.

This time around we stuck with the basics, that is, ribs. I ordered a half rack of St. Louis ribs, Drew ordered a 3/4 rack of baby backs. Both were dry rubbed and cooked to falling-off-the-bone tenderness. Two barbecue sauces were brought to the table - tangy Texas and spicy Arkansas. The spicy sauce had a bit of a kick but wasn't overwhelming. You get a choice of jalapeƱo cornbread or Texas toast; we both chose the garlicky goodness from Texas. Smoked beans were excellent. Hand cut fries were tasty and not the least bit greasy. Cheesy grits had just a little too much cheese, but were otherwise delicious. Each dinner was served with a whole chili pepper. Loved how our soft drinks were served in Mason jars.

The assortment of pies for dessert sounded yummy, but as usual, we were too full.

Service was friendly and efficient. And I believe it was the owner who stopped by our table to make sure we were satisfied.

Overall impression -- a nice neighborhood restaurant with an interesting menu, well worth the visit. Next time I want to try some of those Cajun/Creole dishes.

  • Mara's Too on Urbanspoon

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