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The SCENE Magazine

Noah’s Ark Bar & Grill: View + Atmosphere = Relaxing, Easy-Going Vibe

When you hear Margaritaville… or Key West… What do you picture?

The folks at Noah’s Ark hope that you come to the Ark and feel like you’ve stepped a thousand miles away from your troubles. There are no stuffy attitudes in this friendly, tight-knit community restaurant and palapa bar. Kick back, relax, stay a while and enjoy the view, the food, and the drinks. The building and its patios boast great panoramic views of Galveston Bay from every outdoor seat. Besides the view, here are 10 other reasons to set your course to Noah's Ark (4438 Boulevard in Bacliff):

Diverse menu: Noah’s Ark’s staff prides themselves on providing a delicious dining experience. The menu offers casual to upscale fare, from handmade hamburgers to grilled red snapper, or wings (nine styles) to hand-breaded chicken strips and shrimp. Newer menu items include the California Chicken Sandwich and the Turkey Club with Avocado. Co-owner Steve Tolhurst said that without question, the most popular appetizers are the Hot Mermaids (bacon-wrapped shrimp with jalapeño, fried or grilled) and the Fresh Oysters (raw or grilled). “Be sure to try Noah’s ‘famous’ Oyster Shooters,” he suggested. The entire menu is available upstairs in the palapa bar, downstairs, and on the three outside patios.

Full Bar: Noah’s Ark offers an impressive menu of beer, wine, frozen cocktails and mixed drinks. Be sure to check out the new specialty drinks on the menu. Best sellers include the spicy, sweet and salty Jalapeño Margarita, Fresh Minty Mojitos and the Dirty Monkey made with fresh bananas. Longtime customer favorites are the Noah’s Piña Colada, Noah’s Rita and Parrot Head Punch. (Be sure to check out Noah’s ad for happy hours and specials.)

Breakfast with a view: Bring your whole crew and let Noah’s handle breakfast for you, served fresh seven days a week, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to noon, Saturday and Sunday 7 a.m. to 11 a.m. On the weekends, (Saturday 8am - Noon and Sunday 8am - 1pm) enjoy their breakfast buffet complete with a made-to-order omelet and egg station. Arrive thirsty, because Bloody Marys, Screwdrivers and Mimosas are $3 each from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays and all day Sunday. I can’t speak for your view, but the waterfront view at Noah’s beats my kitchen view any day.

21 & up only upstairs: Located on the second floor, the Ark has a gigantic (3,800 square-foot) covered rooftop palapa bar and restaurant for 21 and up only. The beautifully furnished, Belize-inspired, open-air palapa bar is affectionately referred to as the “Parrots Nest.” Take a seat at the bar or find a table with tiki-style barstools, then sit back and take it in – there’s a waterfront view from EVERY seat. Enjoy live entertainment Friday and Saturday nights. As you soak in the atmosphere, their slogan comes to life: “Your island paradise just minutes from home.” Tolhurst said, “De-stress, breathe in the tropical atmosphere, taste the light spray of saltwater on your lips, sip a cool drink, slide down a fresh oyster, and know you’ve made it to paradise!”

Family-friendly downstairs: Inside this Ark-inspired building, find a warm, inviting Noah’s Ark-themed interior where kids and the young-at-heart will be delighted by the numerous Noah’s Ark references they’ll find. Whether it be the giant wall mural, the figurines in the custom shelving unit, or names on the menu, the Ark theme runs throughout. Their three downstairs waterfront patios aren’t just family friendly, but pet-friendly also. Four-legged family members are always welcome, but Noah’s (like most establishments) requests that they must be on a leash. Hassle-free parking: Any day of the week, find plenty of parking on-site, or worst case, park a half block away in a nearby designated lot. Motorcycle-friendly parking is also available in front of the restaurant. Free parking seven days a week.

Oysters! Oysters! Oysters! Noah’s Ark offers Oysters Raw on the half shell or grilled six different ways, some of their favorite grilled oysters include, Captain’s Oysters (with shrimp, Parmesan cheese and garlic butter), Oysters Rockefeller (with cream spinach sauce and Parmesan cheese) and Jalapeño Oysters (with Jalapeños, picante sauce and Mozzarella cheese). Order a dozen, a half dozen or the 2x2 Oyster Sampler (a pair of all six grilled on one dish).

Party atmosphere! Friday and Saturday nights, the Ark is bursting with energy! Sparks are flying on the dance floor with live music and karaoke each night on alternate floors. Fridays in the upstairs Parrots Nest, enjoy karaoke from 8 p.m. to midnight, while the main stage downstairs has a live band from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. Saturdays it’s the opposite: there’s a live band upstairs in the palapa bar (8 p.m. to midnight) and karaoke down on the main stage (9 p.m. to 1 a.m.) “Noah’s Ark is the only place for miles around, where you can sit in an upstairs palapa bar or on a waterfront deck, eat, drink, listen to live music and have a awesome view of Galveston Bay!” said Tolhurst.

Plenty of Seating: At Noah’s Ark, guests will never be handed a pager. Open seating is always available, inside or out, and guests can seat themselves to take advantage of all the water views, or can find a more intimate spot inside to suit their mood. Large parties of guests are always welcome. Outdoors, Noah’s Ark features three downstairs, waterfront-facing patios. Inside, find table seating, bar seating, or a room for larger private parties. But without question, the best-unobstructed views are upstairs in the Parrots Nest that boasts 20 tables and a large bar. Hosting made easy: Hosting an event has never been easier since Noah’s Ark has full-service in-house catering. They can handle all the details. This unique venue offers three areas (including the Parrots Nest) available for weddings, receptions, parties, reunions, or any type gathering. There is no charge for the use of these unique spaces with the purchase of food and beverages. Call 281-339-2895 to reserve.