Hugh Acheson

Hugh Acheson shares tales of his time in Juneau, Alaska.

on Feb 7, 2013

Juneau. Ah, Juneau. So beautiful and so wonderfully strange. 

Stefan is gone and also lost in LCK to his beloved Kristen. The lineup is comprised of Josh, Sheldon, Lizzie, and Brooke. The boat pulls up to Juneau, and we all disembark. The chefs walk the gangplank and head into town. Juneau is a very interesting town: beautiful scenery, amazing people, very much a “last frontier” mystique. Sheldon realizes it's cold and tells us that he is wearing three pairs of Hawaiian Hulk Underoos to compensate for the chill to his “package.” I thought he called it his “Lil Menehune." 

They get right into a Quickfire at Tracy’s Crab Shack with Sean Brock. Tracy’s is billed as Juneau’s “No. 1 culinary destination,” and it is really tasty, but don’t expect a deep wine program and Limoges china. It’s a hut that serves great food. But it’s a hut. That’s like calling a Kogi truck the apex of dining in L.A. 

Fresh king crab is just so much better than frozen. These barbed beauties are eons away from the stuff you may have grown up with. It is truly superb, and Tracy’s does it in numerous ways. I think it’s probably a five-million-dollar a year hut with a 20% food cost, and it’s closed for a huge amount of the time. Sign me up for a franchise, as this business model makes me very jealous. 

My friend Sean Brock, culinary wanderer, superstar chef, and wunderkind of Appalachian food lore, has flown up to meet the chefs for some crabby patties. He is wearing a Billy Reid t-shirt and looking very stylishly professorial. Sean and I made it a point to go to all the bars in Juneau that locals told us not to go to. Should have listened to the locals, as the Lucky Lady has no luck, no ladies, and is about the strangest-smelling drinking hole on the planet. It smells like Lysol covering a crime.