Lowery's Resturant: Not What it Used to Be
Traveling through Tappahannock many times a year, I was often taken to Lowery's by a traveling companion. Most of the time the idea to eat there began with, "Oh, we used to come to this restaurant when I was a kid". Well times have changed. This is not a bad restaurant, just in my opinion, outdated and average at best. A little expensive for the amount of food you get. The service also leaves much to be desired. I had been there several times all different times of the day and the service was slow, and with the number of employees "just standing around" it's perplexing as well.
Lowery's Seafood Restaurant: Long Time Favorite
I remember going to this restaurant in the spring when we were driving from Norfolk to Baltimore (circa 1961). My mom and I would always have the shad roe in the spring.
But Lowrey's has been around longer than that - since 1938 Wesley and Lorelle Lowrey have been feeding people - the people from Richmond who are coming to 'the Rivah' and the people from Hampton who are driving up 17 to Washington. It is open 364 days a year for lunch and dinner.
The inside of the restaurant had many exhibits, almost like a museum. It houses the Lowery's founder's antique car collection (photo 3), a talking parrot, and a fishing well for kids.
The restaurant publishes a promotional flyer listing 101 reasons to eat at Lowery's. Among them: Your mother-in-law is visiting, your mother-in-law is not visiting, you owe it to yourself, E.T. ate here and plenty of high chairs are available
Favorite Dish: We ate here on the way home in the spring of 2005, but I didn't write it up at the time, so I don't remember what we had. On the internet it says:
Featuring daily lunch and dinner specials, plus all you can eat dinner specials. Lowery's is famous for our "very own" fried chicken, mouth watering local seafood in season from from the nearby Rappahannock River and Chesapeake Bay. Serving only the finest quality beef and steaks, juicy burgers and prime rib. Remember the Carry Out Shop. Most anything on the menu can be ordered through the Carry Out Shop. Let Lowery's do the cooking when you're having the gang over or just want to give mom the night off.
The menus are on the internet at the Lowrey's URL
- Food and Dining
- Family Travel
- Road Trip
River Bank Cafe and Seafood: Local - Fresh - Fast - Friendly
We were driving north on US route 17, which we had not driven in some time. It was getting on toward 5:30, it was rainy and darkly overcast, and we were getting hungry. As we approached Tappahannock, we wanted to stop and eat. I remember that there was a regular sit down restaurant in the center of Tappahannock, but didn't know whether we had passed it or not because I didn't remember the name nor did I know whether we were in the center of Tappahannock yet. [It turned out to be Lowery's that I remembered and we had not passed it yet.]
We passed a Shoneys and a number of fast food places (Burger King, KFC/Taco Bell, McDonalds, Pizza Hut, Dominos, Subway, and Wendys) but I didn't feel like fast food for dinner. There were also a bunch of Chinese restaurants (Tea House, China King and Asia House) but I didn't feel like Chinese either. I considered the Crabby Oyster, but didn't 'say when' in time for Bob to turn.
Finally I said - Here, and we stopped at a small unprepossessing looking building. We went up to the porch and the door was locked although the sign said that it was open until 6 pm, and it was only 5:30.
But the lady inside unlocked the door and let us in -- she had been going to close because it had been so slow, but she said we could eat there.
There were pictures of her husband and son (and dad) with the fish they'd caught on all the posts. There was also a large selection of ready-to-eat and raw seafood for purchase to take out. Oysters in the shell were 25 cents apiece. Shrimp was between $8.99 and $6.99/lb. depending on the size of the shrimp. They also had Old Bay Cocktail Sauce (last picture) on sale. We've never seen that before.
Favorite Dish: Bob got the shrimp dinner with two sides ($8.99) and he picked cole slaw and potato salad. I got the shrimp basket, which was fried shrimp and french fries for $4.95. I got a macaroni salad as a side ($1.19). I wanted to get the broccoli salad, but she was out. I got my dinner later than Bob did because she had to cook mine - it was so hot I almost couldn't eat it. The side and part of the shrimp are lower right. It wasn't really in a basket but on a plate.
We drank iced tea, and I got a bread pudding to go. The whole bill was under $25 including tip.
The whole meal was done in less than 25 minutes. I do not think it could have been any faster at any of the fast food restaurants. Although I did hurry in eating so she'd be able to leave by six. Perhaps we could have gotten a more elegant meal at Lowery's but I do not think it could have been any faster, fresher or friendlier.
- Budget Travel
- Road Trip
Lowery's is a nice restaurant serving local and American food in Tappahannock, some 40 miles (66 km.) from my home via Route 360 east.
Favorite Dish: Sometimes I have grilled liver and onions, baked potato and fries; other times I like the fried scallops.
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