Absolutely Alabama: Pirates Cove Cheeseburgers

Published: Feb. 25, 2014 at 7:49 PM EST|Updated: Feb. 26, 2014 at 7:26 AM EST
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BALDWIN COUNTY, AL (WXTX) - There are legends about a spot on Alabama's Gulf Coast called Pirate's Cove. We'll take you to a spot which many call paradise for a cheeseburger which is Absolutely Alabama.

Welcome to the legendary Pirates Cove, located in Baldwin County, Ala.

"It was built in the 30s in conjunction by the Corps of Engineers with the Fore Inter-Coastal Waterway Project," said Paul Mueller, one of the owners of Pirates Cove. "It served as a general store and post office. It's very unique. You won't find another place like it anywhere I don't think."

Paul runs the store with his mother and brother Karl Mueller. He and Karl do most of the operating work, and their mother lets them know when they do something she doesn't like.

And if there's something you don't like about having a few dogs around you're probably in the wrong place. So while assorted pooches lounge in the sun back in the kitchen Karl and Paul pile up the cheeseburgers.

Paul says they cook probably 60,000 to 65,000 burgers during the busy season from Spring Break until Labor Day.

So out of 65,000 cheeseburgers served up every summer, is it possible one of those long ago cheeseburgers was the cheeseburger immortalized by Jimmy Buffet?

"The most well-known lore would be this is where Jimmy Buffett wrote Cheeseburger In Paradise," Paul said. "Prob'ly not true that he wrote it here. Could be. He did come here when he was much younger. He landed his sea plane and would come up in the early 70s but that was a long time ago. He doesn't say that it's about this place but other people do."

"People ask us all the time you know?" said Karl Mueller. "And we're like well could be. I don't know. He's from the area. He's been here before. I mean I met him when I was probably 13 I guess, out here."

So why do customers come to such a secluded cove for a cheeseburger?

"Just ah you know? Good food," Karl said. "Cook it about 300 degrees. Takes anywhere from eight minutes to 15 minutes depend in on you know? If you've got 60 go in it takes longer but you're rotating them through. Every ones do in a little. There's several people standing in this space. We put a special sauce on it that my grandmother created."

If you've come to eat a cheeseburger you've come to the right place, just don't expect to hear it immortalized in song.

"Not a lot of people play that up which we're really happy about actually," Paul laughs. "Cause yes that can be slaughtered."

Whether or not the original cheeseburger in paradise came from here or not we can't say. Maybe nobody can. If you see the guy you'll have to ask him but we would say these cheeseburgers are as good as you'll find anywhere and Pirates Cove is paradise and Absolutely Alabama.

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