A&M Atlantic Seafood- Cocoa- 4 Stars
First, it was the phone call, then it was the sign (see photos) I first saw upon entering A & M Atlantic Seafood that brought and kept the late, great comedian John Pinnette to mind and his famous "Chinese Buffet" routine. It was a packed house for lunch, and as no one else seemed to be paying any attention to it, I turned mine towards what I can only assume was a shrine to the All Holy and Mighty Pineapple, sending a quick thought westward towards the Holy Land (Hawai'i)
I approached the counter to place my order. What I found behind the counter only solidified my belief that I was in Mr. Pinnette's bit. She can only be described as the stereotypical "Dragon Mom" made famous in the book by Janet Gonzalez-Mena. She was of Asian descent, unsmiling and slung tough love around like she was chumming for sharks. She had everyone on their toes, focused and performing their assigned task with efficiency and pride. What is the result of all this bossing around and frowning at her employees? Only the best fried Conch I have ever had! It was so devine that I had to go back a second time just to make sure I wasn't dreaming. Rest assured, I was not. It is real and very, very delicious.
The sweet tea is homemade as it is written in the Florida state constitution (a little-known fact). The Catfish and Shrimp dinner that I ordered was just as out of this world fresh as the Conch. Everything was perfectly breaded and fried to an amazing golden brown. The crunchiness of the batter combined with the tenderness of the Catfish and the Shrimp was an obvious sign of a well-run ship. I will definitely head back a third, fourth and most likely a fifth time just to make sure for my readers Dragon Lady still has everyone on point. It's the least I can do.
The Big Boy says, "For an exciting cultural experience and the absolute best fried Conch around, head on over to A & M Atlantic Seafood in Cocoa. Just don't stay longer than four hours!"