Wings at Gator’s Dockside in University

gator's dockside

Gator’s Dockside. REAL FLORIDA CASUAL DINING. None of that pansy-ass Georgia casual dining. Originating in Jacksonville, Gator’s Dockside finally fills that giant gap we’ve been feeling in the sports bar/grill realm. At last we can eat wings and watch sports on TV, right here in Florida! Thanks, Gator’s Dockside!

Alright well now that the ridiculous sarcasm is out of the way, I can get on with the review. Gator’s Dockside, on Fowler just east of 56th street, is exactly what you’d expect out of a sports bar – television, beer, a good amount of indoor seating, some outdoor seating, and a lot of dudes. Pretty standard. So what makes them so special? THE WINGS.

Yeah. It’s another wing review. AWESOME!!! Gator’s Dockside has a whole bunch of wing sauces. And wing styles. Variety excites me!

BUT I guess I’m getting ahead of myself. We of course ordered an appetizer. They have a good selection to choose from, including fried gator tail (which is apparently “their most popular”). In retrospect, I really should have ordered some gator tail. Instead, we got this:

gator taters

This is a bowl of what they call “Gator Taters”, which consists of country style potatoes, cheese (cheddar and mozzarella), bacon, and a “secret” layer of delicious ranch dressing. So it’s pretty much a bowl of awesome. It’s rather good, though it is something that I think would be hard to mess up. It would have been nice if there was more of it, and also I prefer fries because you can pick those up by hand. Check out Outback Steakhouse’s Aussie Cheese Fries… same concept, better execution. But either way, delicious.

Okay so on to the wings. Gator’s Dockside features fifteen different sauces, listed above. They also offer their wings in one of three ways: Gator’s famous “Grilled Wings”, breaded “Gator Wing”, and naked “Buffalo Wing”. So you got grilled, breaded and fried, or just fried. You can also get your wings in the “boneless” style, but that automatically makes you a pathetic loser.

gator's wings

I ordered sixteen grilled wings (which is their recommended style, and what they’re likely best known for), half “Gator’s Own” hot (on the left), and half “Scooter” (on the right), which was recommended by the server, who said it was their most popular sauce. Scooter Sauce, as I recall, is half barbecue, half honey garlic. So it’s another sweet/savory combination sauce.

gator's wings close

The wings, having been grilled, had a nice char on them, and a slightly smokey flavor to the meat. The Scooter Sauce wing, on top, glistened with saucy goodness; the hot wing was not nearly as seductive. Now, bear in mind that the menu recommends the hot sauce (that’s what that little gator by it meant), naming it “Gator’s Own”, but apparently couldn’t give two shits about the Scooter. But the hot sauce was totally lame! Okay, well maybe not totally. But it packed little to no punch at all! As far as I can tell, 3 pepper suicide is the only thing on the menu that might actually be hot, and it will kill you if you eat it! Weak. But despite not being spicy, the Gator’s Own hot sauce had an alright flavor; it was pretty run of the mill wing sauce.

The Scooter Sauce was much more interesting, with a very light garlic taste, but mostly a sweet barbecue flavor came through, and I quite liked it. The sauce was also thicker and stickier, which I think served it well. The only problem with it was that the flavor was not pronounced enough… it was rather light, and the taste of the char overpowered it into oblivion on some bites. I really would have liked more flavor. I’d ask for an extra side of the sauce.

So in summation, I can’t say that Gator’s Dockside is a favorite of mine, but the wings were alright, and I might go back. Grilled wings is a nice touch to have in a world of fried wings, especially for what is more or less just a sports bar. Oh except for on Tuesday nights. Apparently Tuesday nights are for kids, and they have clowns and shit. Avoid that.

1 comment

  1. Where are you?? I can get some hnaldes and may have a Premier hnalde kicking around. If it is the leather one that goes under two metal cover caps take the old pieces to a boot and shoe repair shop. They can approximate the shape from the rotted leather (maybe) and cut two or three pieces and stitch them together into a thicker piece I have had to do this myself and use a Mexican shoe repair shop. I am within 3 hours of Mexico in sunny hot (will it ever cool off hottest August and July ever) Phoenix Az. As for the cap job, if you were close or willing to ship I can only say ask around your area. Find some old burnt out musicians that have been there a while like myself who know some of the shop and repair people’s history. I am an anal SOB who would look at what caps are bad check the rest, and try to find a cap that preserves the original sound. Most techs just stick either orange drops or what they can get cheap in an amp. Most techs do not have 2/3rds of Mc Intosh’s Danish audio analyzer console and $10,K in other sound and distortion analyzing instrument on their bench either. Hopefully you might be OK with just the filter caps swapped out, and make sure nothing else is too leaky. Some of those caps that leak a tad, but not enough to cause any real problems can make for an awesome blues guitar or harp amp sound. I finally put aluminum foil and paper with bee’s wax caps in my mom’s old Supro 1624. The Q was not audiophool stupid high, and they do not dry out. They are the low end cap in the Amp Ohm Cap line. The sell silver foil, or copper foil in oil with paper, and silver leads. (STUPID MONEY EXPENSIVE) Best wishes, and I hope you get it back to a better state than it is now.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>