Originally intended to be nothing more than a wine and raw bar, in the past seven months, Papa's has transformed into a sort of seafood gastropub. Through nothing more than word of mouth -- the Ganters don't believe in advertising -- Papa's rapidly became wildly popular with the Lighthouse locals.
"As soon as we opened, things went crazy," says Troy. "More than anything else, it's the energy and the ambiance that people have really come to love. Nothing in the area offers this type of getaway."
Papa's interior is like a cave of carefully chosen curiosities, from the collection of vintage license plates and nautically inspired decor, to the posters and chalkboard wall advertising local brews and area businesses. The shoutouts are a big part of Troy's mission to support the locals. Even the menu, with names like Anthony's Arugula Salad and Sonny's Beer Steamed Clams, is a nod to regular patrons.
The crowd is a mix of young and old, and the beer and wine flow freely. Depending on the evening, you can sip them to the tunes of a local reggae band, and on weekends after 8 p.m., the volume turns up with live acts until the wee hours.
"I wanted Papa's to be different from next door but still offer that same, relaxed vibe," says Troy. "More of an island theme, with a New Orleans and Asian influence."
The bar now offers about 100 beers -- by the bottle and on draft -- coupled with a menu of classic South Florida-style eats. A raw bar first, the restaurant's claim to fame is its Badger's Char Grilled Oysters, fresh-shucked and char-grilled for a smoky, intense flavor. Served at market price, they're a perfect example of why it can be difficult to find a square meal on a tight budget at Papa's.