Seeing can be deceiving. What you see on the outside is not the same as what you can experience inside. Happy Snapper Seafood can prove this. Outside it is a small place in a strip mall near industrial sites. But when you go inside you find yourself in a fish market shop. That is when things change. You are handed a menu and can decide for either a take-out or to eat there. It is your choice. The place is simple and that is it. Once you place an order things can change. 


We first ordered Oysters. Just half a dozen was what one wanted. But it was more. These were large fresh oysters to have. And they were fresh and tasty. Just as if they were taken from the sea. Next up was an order of Crab Legs. These were also fresh and tasty. We had a dozen and they were perfect. Simple, clean, and ready for you. They came with a side of warm garlic butter. This alone was worth it with bread. But with the crab it was ideal. 


Next up we had a Paella. A combination of Shrimp, mussels, clams, chorizo, scallops, calamari, green peas, simmered in saffron rice. The taste was fresh. The seasoning is ideal. The concept is amazing. It was like stepping back into Barcelona where we first had real paella. Here it was just like that. 

We also had an order of Salmon Burger. It came with lettuce, tomato, onion, and a side of French Fries. The burger alone could have been the meal. It was huge. At least a pound of salmon is done as a burger. You didn’t even need the bread to eat the burger. It was perfect. It was also warm and perfect. It was very fresh. That was the meal. 


We then chatted with Chef Rich. He had been cooking for many years starting in the Boston area. He then came down to Orlando to work in a fish store. Instead, he also started cooking.

He was wonderful to talk to (we had lived in the Boston area as well.) We also talked to the hostess/waitress/manager – Juliette. She managed the visitors while the Chef cooked. He was great. The team is wonderful. And I already made my next plan to visit the place the next time we would visit. I have a copy of the menu and what I will order then. 

And we did.


THIS IS ALWAYS A FABULOUS PLACE. It is worth a visit and a place to enjoy a meal. You can let Rich cook you whatever you want and he will do it. It is perfect. 

Last night we had Seafood with pasta and tomato sauce. This was heaven. The sauce was freshly made in the morning. This is not canned. This is homemade! The pasta was freshly made as well. 

You cannot find this even in many Italian restaurants. But here it is made fresh and tasty. This alone could be a meal. But with fresh seafood, you can not miss it. It is perfect. Tasty. Flavors and fish. Clams, Shrimps, Scallops. Mussels. And more. Whatever is fresh has been added to the dish. And while it is for one person it is large enough to share for two people. There is enough. 

We also had a Grouper sandwich which is ideal. Fresh. Perfect. In a role that is ideal for you to take a bite. And don’t forget the fries. Even these were made in the morning and ready to enjoy with each bite you take. 

We also had a Shrimp Quesadilla. Again, this alone could have been a separate meal. It was even better than other restaurants that might make it. You need to try this.

Happy Snapper Seafood Orlando
The Seafood Quesadilla. Photo by Ron Rossi


One nice thing…We did have the Chocolate Cake for dessert. The three of us shared it. Trust me, this is another story as a friend of the Chef is a Baker. This cake was better than what we had at some fancy restaurants. This was a chocolate person’s delight!

In the end this time, Happy Snapper is not a fancy place. That is not what it is about. It is about the seafood, the cook, and the meal. The team is wonderful and glad to help. The price is better than what you can get even from a chain restaurant. This is fresh. And Chef Rich is perfect. He makes this place everything it is and even more. Thank you. 

Happy Snapper Seafood
The Chocolate Cake. Photo by Ron Rossi

I am already thinking about what to have the next time I visit in a few weeks. What will it be this time?



6327 S Orange Ave, Ste 104, Orlando, FL 32809

Phone: (407) 757-0976

Website: https://happy-snapper-seafood-market-restaurant

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“The Jaded Traveler”. Ron Rossi was born and raised in New York. A globalist at heart, Ron is a marketing director by trade, and has lived and worked around the world including Asia, Europe, Africa, and South America. Food is one of the best ways to learn about a country, a people and a culture. So, Ron is always looking for the best in mid-range to budget and street food. He is always on the hunt for a good meal anyone can afford. It is the food of the average citizen that excites him. And with having visited close to 100 countries on 6 continents so far, there have been some pretty good meals.