Last spring, I was horrified at Barnhill’s Buffet in Moss Point, MS and wrote a terrible review of its cleanliness. I swore that I would NEVER go back again after its condition deteriorated into the level of dismal dump.
My mother always told me to never say never, because I was recently convinced to return.
We arrived for lunch, meeting our dining companions, and I was pleasantly surprised. The carpets had been cleaned, and while they certainly were past their prime, clean was a huge improvement. The tile area around the buffet tables was also clean, rather than slippery with grease. The restrooms were also far from luxurious, but they were acceptable. Acceptable was a vast improvement over my previous visit.
The food was also acceptable–nothing spectacular, but I know I’m a tough critic. I had to remind myself that their prices were dirt cheap at $5.95 plus drink. They always have good fried chicken, as long as it is reasonably fresh, and since it’s a popular item on the buffet, it usually is. Their desserts were acceptable as well, with a fair selection for the lunch crowd. The service was also reasonably good, and we had no complaints at all about the overall experience.
So, we got brave, and with their advertisement of a seafood buffet on Friday and Saturdays after 4 pm, we tried it on a Saturday. We didn’t realize until we got to the register inside that the price jumps $3 per person for the seafood experience, but we went ahead and paid the $8.95 per person.
Unfortunately, we were immensely disappointed. For the price, we could nearly get a good seafood meal elsewhere, and their seafood was anything but good. The boiled shrimp was mushy, the fried shrimp was buried in such thick breading that it was tasteless. They offered an unknown whole fish and the usual fried catfish nuggets/small pieces. The catfish is usually on the buffet during the other days and is mediocre–nothing to get excited about. Clam strips, mysterious seafood “cakes” (about the size of a scallop) and stuffed crab also appeared. The cakes and stuffed crab were merely gooey lumps of fishy flavored dough, totally unappealing. The clam strips were the same kind you’d see anywhere–fishy and rubbery things inside of breading.
At $5.95 most days, Barnhill’s is a bargain meal. At $8.95 for their disastrous attempt at a seafood buffet, it’s not a bargain at all. On Sundays, until 5 or 6 pm (I don’t recall the hour) it is $6.95 and it’s still a reasonable price. Overall, I’d say Barnhill’s Buffet was a decent place to eat, except on Friday and Saturday evenings–skip those evenings.