Jamey and Candace Price Blend Taps and Tables at Grayton Beer Brewpub
From pulled pork to grouper, this isn't your ordinary bar food.
photos by Jacqueline ward
In close-knit families — and even so much more so here in the South — Sunday means big family suppers, meals of home-cooked food served on massive tables where dishes are overflowing with flavor and tradition and hearts are overflowing with love.
For Jamey and Candace Price, Sundays have long meant just that.
It was that very concept of Sunday mealtimes spent at the table with family and friends, sharing food and creating memories, that served as the inspiration for their newly launched restaurant in Grayton Beach.
Having already made a name for themselves as the founders and owners of Grayton Beer Company, the Prices naturally had a captive audience for anything to which they turned their focus.
And one might say that using the craft brewery — whose fun, beach-inspired names belie the seriousness with which they approach their mission of creating the perfect beer — as a jumping off point for their new venture was nothing if not a no-brainer, an ideal gateway into the gastro-pub game.
But more than just a restaurant, from first sharable plate to the last morsel of dessert, everything on the menu at Grayton Beer Brewpub is a reflection of their love of family, friends and food, a way to open their table to all who wish to come and spend time with them.
These are dishes that have been passed down through generations, flavors borne of the recipes that have long graced the tables of the Price family — and in offering them to their guests at the Brewpub, they are offering a welcome into their family, as well.
Brought to life by the practiced hand of chef Scott Plumley, the menu is a fusion of soulful Southern cuisine mixed with classic pub fare and fresh Gulf seafood.
And while there are certainly nods to the down-home roots of these dishes, each is executed with a level of detail and refinement that makes them seem more elevated — exceptional rather than ordinary.
And the locals are certainly taking notice, turning those beloved Price family favorites into favorites of their own.
photography by Joseph Victor Stefanchik
No ordinary bar food: A mere sesame-seed bun can’t stop this pulled-pork sandwich; it can’t even hope to contain it.
The Smoked Wings, served with a creamy Alabama white sauce originally created at Back Beach Barbecue using Grayton Beer Company’s own Beach Blonde Ale as well as a spicy, scratch-made barbecue sauce, are a popular way to kick off a meal.
They’re a perfect complement to the award-winning brews flowing through the taps of the four-handle beer engine that pumps beer from casks within the pub’s cellar.
“One of the great things about the Brewpub is that it’s uniquely positioned to introduce the millions of tourists who visit the Gulf Coast annually to our craft at the brewery,” Jamey said.
Each of the items created in its kitchen stands in happy partnership with a menu of 15 beers, which are served from taps, bottles and cans … and even in sauces.
“We have a number of sauces and dressings that are made with Grayton Beer Company brews, like the Fish Whistle IPA mustard that accompanies our Artisan Bavarian Pretzels and the small-batch stout beer cheese we use in our nachos,” Jamey noted.
Which would certainly explain the popularity of the Beer Cheese Nachos, a mountainous appetizer that layers on the flavor with tender pulled pork, shredded lettuce, diced tomatoes and jalapenos piled high on tortilla chips and smothered in beer cheese, spicy barbecue sauce and barbecue ranch sauce.
For double-fisted appetites, burger lovers can pair their favorite pilsner with the Beach Burger, a freshly ground, grass-fed beef patty topped with melted white American cheese, crisp lettuce and tomato, then nestled into a classic sesame bun slathered with a proprietary “secret sauce” served with fresh-to-order, hand-cut fries.
And paying homage to the abundance of fresh fish caught daily on the docks, the Grouper Sandwich features a fresh fillet prepared grilled, fried, or blackened and given a Creole spin with a zesty remoulade sauce.
But regardless of whether you’re in the mood for decadence, comfort or even something on the lighter side, there’s something for everyone, a dish to satisfy every craving and every size hunger.
The Prices wish only that you come to the table ready to eat, to laugh, to share a memory and perhaps to raise a glass to family, friends and to life.
That’s the real recipe here — served up on every single plate and flowing from every single tap.
Grayton Beer Brewpub | 170 East County Highway 30A, Santa Rosa Beach | graytonbeer.com | (850) 213-4000; | Open daily, 11 a.m.