Established in 1992, Powerhouse Seafood and Grill is a locally owned restaurant housed in a building with an electrifying history. The history of the site provides a great setting for the restaurant’s homemade, locally flavored dining options.
Back in the early 1900s the building was constructed as a powerhouse, or power station. By the mid-1920s the facility’s generators were powering every community between Fayetteville, Harrison, the Missouri border, the Oklahoma border and Winslow. Today, Powerhouse Seafood and Grill, excellently repurposed, features a charming industrial décor that is comfortable and relaxing. And it can seat up to 350 guests in its dining area, another 150 in outside dining areas and even more in private dining areas. Pieces of powerhouse history and Arkansas Razorback memorabilia adorn the walls, as it is located very close the University of Arkansas campus.
Owner Jeff Caudle worked as an NCAA women’s basketball official for 23 years and in the real estate field. He takes great pride in preserving the heritage of the restaurant and is very keen on customer input and service.
“I’ve been told that our menu is too large, but we have enough options that a group of 20 can each find something different to enjoy,” Caudle said. “We have a book of recipes that have been maintained and enhanced over the years. They are a treasure chest.”
There are at least 50 entrée options for your dining pleasure, along with 13 appetizers. Caudle said the “create your own platter” option is one of the Powerhouse’s crowd favorites. There are more tasty options than a football coach could call in a wishbone offense. Dining plays include clams, catfish, crawfish, chicken, oysters and crab cakes.
The appetizer menu ranges from escargot to Tuscan bruschetta to fried cheese sticks. During the Let’s Eat visit, I sampled the restaurant’s crab rolls, an original creation made on site. This unique twist on the traditional egg roll is stuffed with crabmeat and cream cheese, then cooked to a golden brown. The two rolls are served with a raspberry sauce that accentuates the rolls’ savory flavor. The calamari was equally good; the tender squid was fried to a golden brown with artichoke hearts and dusted with Parmesan cheese. The addition of artichoke hearts was a unique take on the dish.
Powerhouse has a net-full of seafood options. Caudle suggested the Honey Ginger Salmon, which was one of the best salmon dishes I have had. The perfectly grilled salmon fillet was topped with a secret honey-ginger glaze and yummy sautéed shrimp. The marriage of flavors was heavenly. The fish was served with a skewer of grilled, fresh vegetables that were very good.
The Angus Filet Mignon was much to my delight. This hand-cut, bacon-wrapped, nicely seasoned, fork-tender steak was a taste-bud pleaser. Then, I tried dipping a cut of beef into the Powerhouse au jus sauce. Wow! This sauce is pure nectar for beef. A large, loaded baked potato complemented the steak and was topped with fresh bacon bits.
A huge piece of homemade carrot cake appeared on my table, almost too pretty to eat. It was served warm with a sweet glaze. If you like carrot cake, then this is a must-try. Powerhouse is known for its unique key lime pie, and after trying it I know why. This sweet, creamy homemade pie includes a chocolate cookie crumb crust that accentuates the tangy key lime filling.
For a unique dining experience with electrifying food and service, you can’t go wrong with Powerhouse Seafood and Grill.
the eating essentials
Powerhouse Seafood and Grill
112 North University Ave.
Hours of Operation
Monday – Tuesday: 4 p.m. – 9:30 p.m. Wednesday – Thursday: 11 a.m. – 9:30 p.m.
Friday – Saturday: 11 a.m. – 10 p.m. Sunday: 10 a.m. – 9 p.m.