San Pedro Town, Ambergris Caye, Belize

Why You Should Hungry Grouper

Looking for a great local meal? Hungry Grouper is a popular restaurant in downtown San Pedro. Well known and loved Chef Argyle is back in business and serving up his tasty cooking with a side of humor. (Pick up only till further notice.)

When I say well-loved, I am privileged to share a reader story below about just how well-loved and why Argyle deserves community support right now and some praise next time you are talking to him.

One of the reasons I love chef Argyle aside from his humor and special request coconut-crusted pork chops, is that he is alert and aware. I was once out with a traveler, and Argyle, who saw he was looking faint, promptly got him water and asked if the guy had been diving. As it turned out, the traveler was severely dehydrated. So Argyle sent him back to his hotel with a big jug of water and advised him that due to the nature of his symptoms if he should need it, his hotel dive shop (Ramon’s) had oxygen onsite.

If you are wondering, here is what getting a meal from Argyle’s looks like during covid-19. Walkup up with a bell and a limited menu of stewed or fried chicken, sweet and sour pork chop, wings popcorn shrimp, and ceviche.

Hungry Grouper Popular Restaurant Downtown San Pedro Belize

Argyle Saved the Day and a Life

Not only did he save someone’s day as I mentioned above, but he also saved a life. Reader, Ron Weisguth sent in the following email and gave me permission to share.

Good Morning Laurie,

This is Ron Weisguth in St Louis, MO. We emailed a month or so ago about Argyle from The Hungry Grouper encouraging me to get SCUBA certified. I was supposed to be in San Pedro for 2 weeks on the first of August. I had to change my plans postponing my trip for at least 3 months as I’m having open heart surgery this morning.

From your blogs you’ve said you live close to The Hungry Grouper. Here’s the favor and what I think is a cool story. The next time you see Argyle please thank him for putting the SCUBA bug in my ear. As I said earlier I was all set with Scuba School and Family Dive Center to become Open Water Certified.

In 1993 on Father’s Day no less, I had all five of my kids when I had what turned out to be a heart attack which I blew off as nothing. A friend happened to call then stop by practically forcing me to go with him to the hospital. Just as we pulled into the emergency room I was told I grabbed my chest and lunged at my friend who was driving. I “coded” in the emergency room. They did an angioplasty and now I take an aspirin a day.

Fast forward to last year at the Hungry Grouper. I thought about what Argyle said all winter, which is why I contacted SSSDC for lessons. Even though I’m in pretty good shape (I thought) because of my past medical history, I had to get my doctor to sign a medical release. Geoff signed the release, but because of my past, set up a cardiac stress test and made me promise I would have the test before coming to San Pedro.

I failed the test. I didn’t think they were going to let me leave the hospital at that time. They set up a cardiac cath last Monday, and I thought I might have to have a stent or two but would still be able to come to San Pedro but postpone the SCUBA. I wasn’t so lucky. One artery is 80% blocked, and the other two are almost that bad. The thoracic surgeon kept saying, “wow, you are so lucky!”

So if I would not have had lunch and a great conversation with Argyle last July I would not have considered getting SCUBA certified and would not have had any testing. Might say I owe Argyle my life.

It will be a few months but looking forward to getting back to San Pedro as well as meeting you and having a Belikin.

If you get to the Black Orchid or see Tom and Judyann, please say hello from me. I’m on the ACMB as “ronw.” Last year Sally and I had dinner at the Black Orchid after being on the YOLO the night before. I had a great meal, but I was still suffering. I plan on visiting again, but this time not battling a huge hangover.

Thanks in advance for conveying my messages.
Warm Regards,

Part Two

Hi Laurie,

Feel free to share my story. I’ll attach a couple of pictures I’m in from last year. Might take you up on your herbalist.

Let me bore you with a little more background. In 2004 I was on a cruise when I went on an excursion “Swimming with Sharks.” I knew nothing about San Pedro. The water was beautiful, but the excursion itself was not that good but did include lunch in San Pedro. I was on the cruise with a wonderful woman who turned out to be nuts (that’s between you and me). She decided not to go with me on the excursion, which turned out to be a blessing. Lunch was at a restaurant above Crazy Canucks. I was the only person not with someone else, and we had a couple of hours before going back to the cruise ship. I ate quickly and decided to walk into San Pedro. I still remember walking along the beach with my mouth open, mumbling, “wow!” BC’s was still there, and the streets were still sand.

A couple of years later, I found the message board, then your blog, then Rebecca’s blog. Back then, there were board regulars who posted a lot as well as a lot of “Trip Reports” being posted. All of this drew me closer to San Pedro, but things just did not work out as far as returning.

In 2015 I went on another cruise. This time I put my own excursion together, grabbed a plane to San Pedro, snorkeled Hol Chan, grabbed a quick lunch, and almost missed the cruise ship.

Last year I was finally able to spend time on San Pedro falling in love with the view from Coral Bay’s balcony. Everyone I’ve come in contact with in San Pedro, whether an ex-pat or local, has been great. You have no idea how much I appreciate your blog. You help keep me connected, so here’s a huge THANK YOU!!

I look forward to meeting you in person soon.

Best Regards,

Snorkeling Hol Chan Belize

Thanks for Sponsoring

Hi Laurie,

This is Ron Weisguth in St Louis, MO. I hope you are safe and well. I saw a post from your blog a few days ago regarding a Paypal link to sort of help out with all this craziness going on. I can’t find it…which is not unusual for me. If you send me the info, I’ll deposit $50.00 in your account.

Please stay safe. Tell Argyle I can’t wait to get back and lick a plate clean. Last summer, I was there with two of my daughters and two grandsons. My oldest yelled at me not to embarrass her by picking up the plate. I just used my fingers.

When I introduced Argyle to my daughters and grandsons, I told them I owe this man my life.

I had to cancel a trip in mid-March. Hopefully, I can get there soon. I was trying to put a trip together for next July with all my family. Four kids, two of their spouses, six grandkids, and my ex-wife (That could be interesting). 2021 will be the 10th anniversary of my daughter Lisa losing her battle with breast cancer. She loved the tropics. She had a dream of getting married with her toes in the sand.

Hopefully, you know Christian. 12-13 yr old who works the beach by Estel’s, and The Hungry Grouper selling bracelets, necklaces. Last summer, we had a “business arrangement.” Whenever I saw him, I had to buy something. If you see Christian, please tell him I’ll be back to buy more along with my “cheap pickney” Stacy.

Next time I’m there, we will have to have a Belikin Beer. I’d like to introduce you to my family. BTW…my two grandsons (18 & 20) appreciated your discount at Premier Duty-Free last summer.

Please send me the PayPal link so I can help a little. Stay safe.

Best Regards,

Thank you for sponsoring Ron and providing the write-up. Your great story with a few pics was divine timing. I had taken the square pic the other day thinking Argyle needs some creative promo – likely many people do not know he is open.

You not only helped Argyle and myself but you are helping me keep my editor a bit more stable as well during this challenging time.

Ambergris Caye Beach bar

For the Yarbouroughs and the Veeperts, both your sponsored posts are in process. Thanks again to everyone who has sponsored so far. For now, we are in 8 h power out and I am about to disconnect from my desk and hotspot.

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