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Mr Whiskers Hot Springs Restaurants, Scott Irwin, Brad HUdgens

“Mr Whiskers is a casual restaurant where you can let your hair down and just relax”

By: Brad Hudgens

8:50pm…making a list of things to do tomorrow.
Mr. Whiskers is better than ever, and just in the nick (pun intended) of time.
I previously wrote about Mr. Whiskers and am quite impressed with Scott Irwin’s food.  Heavenly barbeque is now offered and Scott has kicked everything up a notch.  In a world of big business chains, it’s nice to support a family owned establishment with an owner who grew up in Hot Springs.   It’s particularly nice when that establishment has great food!  Let’s face it, I believe Mr. Whiskers should be up for the James Beard Culinary Award!  At least the competition will be a close shave.
Mr. Whiskers is a casual restaurant where you can let your hair down and just relax.  The staff is laid back and friendly, and you will leave feeling the same.  I like to arrive and initially get drinks, then sit at a table.  Now I take my time reviewing the menu choices, ordering is completed at the register and the food is brought to your table.  The bottled beers are extremely cold, served from ice, and they have wine as well.  The wine selection is weak, but the food more than makes up for that.  I give very high marks for the menu’s depth, and the taste and quality of the food.   Mr. Whiskers is a great east-side option that will remind you of the old Jason’s.  So if you’re craving catfish, a burger or ribs, you should definitely consider Mr. Whiskers.
The salads here are extremely fresh.  The house dressing, my favorite, is akin to a pesto but perfect consistency for dressing.  The dressing has tons of fresh basil.  You can get a salad topped with fried or grilled seafood.
I want to highlight a few entree items beginning with the Fried Shrimp.  This may be the best EVER!  Most restaurants serve frozen, pre-breaded shrimp.  Mr. Whiskers shrimp is fresh and hand breaded.  This shrimp tastes amazingly light.  The beautiful and fresh prawns are displayed behind glass and are cooked to order.  I haven’t had better fried shrimp in Arkansas.  The BBQ is also noteworthy.  Scott purchased a professional style meat smoker that puts out some fantastic ribs and pulled pork.  The pulled pork is available as a sandwich and may also be ordered as a plate.  The ribs have an incredible consistency and a delightful flavor, as does the pulled pork.  The sauce, served on the side, is delicious and a side of their homemade coleslaw is an excellent accompaniment.  I would recommend the ribs to be served with the tasty hushpuppies!  The catfish here is as good as it gets.  Large filets of US farm raised fish are brought to your table crispy, and steaming hot.  Try it with fresh lemon juice or Whiskers’ Sauce, a remoulade style sauce with horseradish.
The hand-pattied burgers are outstanding and are within the top ten in town.  The grilled tilapia is yummy, and all entrees are served with fries, slaw and hushpuppies or rice, black beans and a salad.  Combo baskets are available with most any combination of shrimp, catfish, oysters or chicken tenders.  The Po-Boys are tops and I hear great comments about their oysters.  For dessert, the homemade bread pudding with whiskey sauce is mouth-watering!
Anytime I visit Mr. Whiskers, located in Indiandale Shopping Center, I seem to see someone I know.  The atmosphere is very clean and inviting, with fishing motif throughout.  It is a popular restaurant, and if you haven’t been in a while you need to check out the new smokin’ popular barbeque offerings.  Scott has a large catering cooker, and can cater freshly cooked food at your location!  I can’t shave any points off of my rating of Mr. Whiskers, as you will note when you dine here.  To save face, I normally end my reviews with razor sharp puns, but this time I’ll let you off the hook…
 10:20pm…I’m sure glad tomorrow has 30 hours.
The views and opinions expressed in the monthly restaurant review are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of  Hot Springs Life and Home magazine’s owners, staff, or advertisers.