Surf Report

Buffets Versus Menu Only Restaurants

best buffet obx

Buffets..Versus The Standard Menu

When you drive by our buffet you will see crowds of people who love the seafood buffet. If you are a regular buffet goer in the OBX you already know the reasons why. I cannot go into all the reabuffet restaurantsons why buffets, especially our seafood buffet, is so popular with just one article. Personally,I think they are as American as apple pie for a number of good reasons.

But you have to start somewhere, so I will start with one specific one here. While a buffet offers a lot of benefits, it also eliminates potential dining problems as well. As much as I enjoy eating out there are a few things I really do not care for. This is the reason I am focusing on here..which is dealing with the tyranny of the limited menu. Menu’s are designed to give you choice, but I think they do the opposite. Here are a few humorous reasons I choose the buffet over the menu.

The Menu Vs The Buffet

When you open a menu you have to look over at least two or three pages of choices just to see what is there. Then you have to process what you are in the mood for versus the choices. Then you have to decide whether you want an appetizer, salad, or nothing before the main course. And of course this is all on faith. I do not know what is good on the menu, maybe with the exception of the few dishes I get almost every time because I can quickly choose them and I know what I am getting. But what I really feel when I look at a menu is pressure. I do not want to choose, I want to try everything.

And There Are Reviews..

And even with rating and review systems there are complications. First, they are not in front of me. I have to, by memory, match up the items in my mind to the menu. This has to be done quickly too as I only have a few minutes before I have to give my order. And when I am in a restaurant I always seem to get spotty wifi if I want to go online to look at them live.

And how do I know how much weight to put into a review. Even though most are honest, everyone has a different frame of reference. People are not going to be reviewing  the food from the same set of criteria I am. Some people are really critical. Others like everything. Many won’t do a review at all. I cannot risk my dinner choice on this very unreliable ranking system. And do not forget, the clock is ticking.

best seafood buffetBack To The Menu

So I am trying to choose the smart choice with five or ten minutes before the waitperson comes back. And I do not want to be that one straggler at the table who has to accept the minuscule offer of pity time to help me decide, as if five more minutes will make any difference. But even if I have the right entrée I need to worry about price. Is it a good value? Are the portions too big or too small? Do I have to pay an upcharge because I do not like the side choices?

So with all these factors I usually just capitulate and do one of two things:

  1. Order a burger or fried shrimp
  2. Order something I have had the last five bazillion times I have been to the restaurant

Something tells me that things could have gone a lot better. This brings me back to the miracle of buffets.

End Menu Tyranny With A Buffet

Now in a buffet there is a menu but it is really more of a playbook or catalog with unlimited choices. There are a list of items. You do not have to review them or give them a second thought. All you have to do is come in and order them. And by order them, I mean put them on your plate and decide which entrée is really the best for you. No being rushed to decide. No wondering what I am missing. No need to make a portion too big or too small. No upcharge for your side dish. Just an easy system of taste testing.

And Reviews? I see a dish I like and can decide for myself. No websites, no time pressure.

But What If I Want A Menu?

Jimmy’s Buffet has a menu. If menu’s are your thing we aim to please. But why limit yourself?

And Of Course We Have The Buffet

If you want to avoid the menu, just order buffet.

And We Have Specials On Our Extensive Buffet

We throw in some Lobster specials too depending on what nights you go. Here is a link to some of our buffet specials for different nights: