When The Waterman Fish Bar owners planned to build and open their third seafood brand in North Carolina, they knew they wanted to add a unique element. The new restaurant would be near Lake Norman, and the designers added three ActivWall Gas Strut Windows to create an indoor/outdoor 360 bar, with a wrap-around patio.
The outdoor bar is a popular spot at the restaurant as the windows add function, style, and wow factor. We’ll share more info about the innovative window, but first, let’s talk about the food!
The Waterman is known for raw oysters, fresh seafood, and their signature boat drinks. On my recent visit, I tried three dishes.
First up was the Crispy Oyster Taco. The freshly caught oysters were perfectly fried and served on a corn tortilla with tri-pepper slaw and Creole mustard. It was tender, flavorful, and delicious.
Next, I tried the Blackened Shrimp Taco, where half a dozen sauteed shrimp were served on a corn tortilla with corn salsa, cotija, and sweet Sriracha. The first taco was delicious, but this one blew me away. The seasoned shrimp paired with layers of sweet and spicy flavors was phenomenal, and you could taste that the corn salsa was freshly made on-site.
Last, I sampled a few of The Waterman’s fresh raw oysters. Each day, varietals offered from the East Coast, Canada, and West Coast are listed online on a chalkboard. The oysters are served on ice with their signature white fennel mignonette, house-made cocktail sauce, and freshly shredded horseradish.
My server recommended some crowd favorites for me to try. The Beausoleil from New Brunswick, Canada, was my favorite, followed by the Sea Level Salts from Sea Level, NC, and Delaware Wilds from Delaware Bay, NJ. If you enjoy Sea Level Salts, The Waterman offers their “Shell Yeah” special, with $1.50 oysters on weekdays from 2-7 pm.
After trying these tasty dishes, it’s easy to see why The Waterman Fish Bar is such a popular restaurant. Moving over to the bar, there is a flurry of activity as The Waterman’s bartenders pour up beer, wine, and crafted cocktails called Boat Drinks.
The bar area has a row of indoor stools and extends service to the covered patio through the ActivWall Gas Strut Window. When the windows are opened, they provide seating for eight more guests and a walk-up window for servers.
A manager at The Waterman noted that the outdoor bar is a crowd favorite. He explained that on most days, the outdoor bar fills up first because people just think it is so fun and unique.
Ceiling fans on the patio create a gentle breeze that keeps guests comfortable outdoors and prevents flies from entering the open windows. The ActivWall Gas Strut Windows are designed with no sill for a smooth counter surface underneath. This is one of six sill options offered.
The aluminum windows have a clear anodized finish for a sleek industrial look. Two of the units measure 102″ wide by 48″ high. The third unit, used for servers, measures 40″ wide by 48″ tall.
During the colder months when the windows are not in use, the restaurant will remain warm and cozy thanks to ActivWall’s thermally-broken aluminum frames and double-paned insulated glass
Story, photos, and video by Jennifer Doss. Music by Anno Domini Beats. Special thanks to Alex Flores and The Waterman Fish Bar.