For folks around the Gulf Coast region, Po-Boy’s are a very personal food. Southerners have very particular preferences to where they eat Po-Boy’s and what comes on them. Whether to order them “Dressed” with shrimp(lettuce, tomatoes, pickles, mayo), or as my sister would, with just ketchup? No matter where you’re favorite place is to have a Po-Boy, from Mother’s in New Orleans, to my personal favorite Harbor View Cafe ( in Long Beach,MS), they all have one necessary common ingredient…Fresh Louisiana French Bread. Po-Boy’s are often imitated, outside the coastal region, but rarely duplicated, simply because it’s hard to find fresh, Louisiana, French Bread that far from the source. To my surprise, AJ’s Famous Seafood, in Marietta,GA, actually comes close.
Having lived all over, it’s a scary experience to try a Po-Boy, north of Interstate-10 (unless you’re in Louisiana). I had nearly given up hope, until a Hungry Southerner suggested AJ’s Famous Seafood. The restaurant itself would easily qualify as a dive, small, narrow, no frills, and I’m going to suggest you stick to the Po-Boy’s, especially for lunch (things like red beans and rice and etouffee are a different problem). To my delight, AJ’s shrimp Po-Boy came dressed, wrapped and stuffed to the brim with fried shrimp, a sure sign of a great sandwich. A good sight to see is when a Po-Boy is so packed with shrimp, they are bursting out of the bread, any less and it’s not authentic. AJ’s French Bread appeared to have the correct texture, and a quick squeeze showed the authentic flaky soft crust of a real Po-Boy. 9 times out 10, by this point, I’m already in tears, because your typical fare would have 3 shrimp, would be dressed incorrectly and the bread would remind you of a hybrid hot dog bun and a brick. I was once served a “PoBoy”, which consisted of 3 shrimp, mayo and lettuce on toasted white bread, just to prove my peril of finding a good Po-Boy.
AJ’s Po-Boy almost tasted as good as it looked. The flavors were all there, and I’ll recommend it for a quick lunch to anyone that has a hankering for a Po-Boy this far from the Coast. It’s not without its faults. Unfortunately the bread that looked and felt so good, tasted stale. Po-Boys should be light the and fluffy in the middle and not overly tough to chew. It’s a compromise AJ’s appears to be making to get authentic ingredients, but they seem to be sacrificing on freshness. Don’t let this get you down, because for $8.39 it’s probably the best Po-Boy you can find in Atlanta, including a side of fries. We’ve heard AJ’s gets busy for lunch so get one to go, and find yourself some Barq’s Root Beer in the bottles. The combination of a Barq’s and a Shrimp Po-Boy are a classic coastal staple that can’t be beat. Stay Hungry Y’all !AJ’s Famous Seafood And PoBoys 678-999-0769
2100 Roswell Rd Suite 200