I'll be there in late Oct w/ my 4-year-old, so can't/won't go upscale. Need breakfast and lunchtime recommendations, we like local Southern but will consider all ideas. Will have car.
Last visit to my uncle in a nursing home there, we found a true chowhound's delight, 23-y-o Cajun guy who'd opened a fish fry place tacked on to a BP on west Hardy Street near the WalMart and Loew's; you could only enter thru the convenience store. All cooked to order, so for our party of 5 it took nearly 45 min to get piping hot fried oyster poboys, perfect soft burning hot oysters in crispy cornmeal shells, layered with a thin dash of remoulade sauce on something like a hotdog bun. Chunks of lemon cut just for us to squeeze over the top. Bread just ok, oysters so good they made up for it. No fresh vegetables whatsoever (way old corn on the cob, only my 3-y-o would eat it), but as for the po-boy, if they'd just find some iceberg lettuce to chop fine they'd have a beautiful thing going. Can't remember the name of this place but I'll submit that later.
You buy your drinks at the convenience store and bring them back to the clean but cold formica tables--kind of like the NYC Thai Blimpie meal, if you read that posting.
But best of all was their crab boil, a "secret family recipe"--the Cajun's parents own some big crawfish restaurant in Louisiana, he's striking out on his own with the BP-adjacent fish fry--so what we were able to extract from him is that his crab boil (we had shrimp and crawfish, both deeply, complexly spicy with a citrus tang throughout) consists of a prepackaged spice blend that he also sells, chinese chilis, and industrial strength lemon oil. He gave us some in a glass jar, saying the oil eats away plastic containers. Anyone know what this stuff is or whether it's really safe to consume? It tasted delicious in the shrimp.
Don't know the name of this--ahem--restaurant, but if it's still open when we go I'll pass the news along. And please don't forget to send me some suggestions! Hattiesburg is usually a depressing food experience.