Ship Ahoy Downtown & I-37Ship Ahoy! I worked at the one corner of I-37 & Water(?) street after high school about 1978. We had to peel 150 pounds of shrimp a day, but with Jose, Jose, Jose (yup 3 of them, they had nicknames but can't say them here), Raul, and the sickly red head guy who washed dishes and seemed to faint every shift, Franklin, we had good crew. I do not remember managers, or waitresses names, but was a tight crew. By that, if any of you have ever been in 'the business' it means good communication, everyone covers everyone's elses butt, if you see a waitress get triple sat (3 tables at once) you can take water, crackers, silverware out. If dishwasher buried, help them out by taking fresh plate stacks to kitchen! Was good crew.
As for the food, we had some super shrimp there, also the fish was always fresh. The tartar sauce if any of you remember was sort of oily, but on purpose! I do not rememeber when the Ship Ahoy place was founded, but it did not look like that in the 1950s/late postcard, that is fine dining. I have silverware from this place still. That is not what made them go out of business though.
When I worked there in late 1970s totally changed decor, still nautical theme, but more booths. I was making something like $4.10 a hour, but was good, hard work, better than construction, and would sort of pave way for me to do 25+ year bartending/manager career. My long 25+ year of BARTENDING CAREER FILE
I think at one point they opened another Ship Ahoy at Ocean Drive at Ennis Joslin, next to Oso Pier. If there is ANY place down there that has similiar delicious shrimp (no tourist traps though!) let us know! The orangish salad dressing, dip, tartar sauce they had, WHICH WAS ADDICTIVE, there are several versions out there on internet (and if on internet IT MUST BE TRUE! ha ha) but I worked there and had to make the stuff, which at the time, was a sort of closely guarded secret like old Colonel Sanders recipe, or Coca Cola recipe. This is the one that (to me as ex employee) tastes most like it.
1 1/2 cups real mayonaise
1/4 cup cocktail sauce
2 boiled eggs really grated up
1/2 cup Sharp cheddar cheese/extremely grated
1 teaspoon seasoned pepper
1/2 teaspoon garlic pepper
2 teaspoons Accent (found at stores)
1 teaspoon Worchester sauce
1 teaspoon sugar
mix well, put in icebox (ya'll still call them iceboxes I hope) to chill out, this was best served in the 50-60 degree range, brought the fried shrimp, salad wedges salads to life! Not that the seafood here needed any help. Again though, this is closest recipe I personally have experimented with...if you have others (ex employees like me!) sometime to add or subtract, let me know!