March 31, 2015

Hot Dish

Inside the Gulfshore's Dining Scene


Hot Dish: Dec. 24, 2008

Inside the Gulfshore’s Dining Scene   Naples Welcomes McCormick & Schmick’s Fresh Seafood Fare   McCormick & Schmick’s Seafood Restaurant has opened with a splash at Naples’ Mercato. From the welcoming dark-wood-and-brass bar to the dining room’s semi-private booths, there’s a rich, old-fashioned charm, with tasteful use of woods, subdued Frank Lloyd Wright-style stained glass lighting and truly comfortable chairs. McCormick & Schmick's And talk about fresh—the menu changes twice a day as shipments arrive. There’s blackened snapper from Key West ($15), Idaho’s almond-encrusted mountain trout ($19), Prince Edward Island’s Malpeque oysters and prosciutto-wrapped sea scallops from Georges Bank, Mass. ($24). I flipped over Canada’s Bay of Fundy Atlantic...

Posted at 11:44 PM | Permalink


Hot Dish: Dec, 10, 2008

Inside the Gulfshore’s Dining Scene   Goodbye to Crü   It’s the end of a brief, yet glorious era for Fort Myers’ Crü, which offered the last of its “Lush Wines and Pure Food” on Sunday in The Bell Tower Shops in Fort Myers.   Launched in 2004 by owners Liz and John Kagan with then-Executive Chef Shannon Yates, Crü rode the crest of the housing boom, as affluent realtors, mortgage brokers, attorneys and others enjoyed the hip scene, dining on expensive, delicious and creative food, champagne and fine wines. They often arrived in chauffeured limousines and didn’t blink at $600 tabs for an evening for four. Heady stuff in heady times.   Shannon Yates left for other ventures. Brian Roland became executive chef for a while, leaving in October to start M...

Posted at 04:49 PM | Permalink


Hot Dish: Nov. 26, 2008

Inside the Gulfshore’s Dining Scene   Sunset Grill Gets a New Look   Sanibel’s Sunset Grill has reopened after remodeling, and it’s better than ever. Chef Amy Visco’s culinary art is as tasty as it is beautiful, and that alone merits a trip to this island-casual spot, within sight of some of the best sunsets in Florida!    puff pastry-laced sea bass at Sunset Grill Two of my favorite dishes are her refreshingly tasty green curry mussels with basil and Key lime ($13), and the puff pastry-laced sea bass, stuffed with creamy charred corn ($32). Now I know why Sanibel restaurants stay busy year-round. Sunset Grill, 6536 Pine Ave., Sanibel, (239) 472-2333.     More Than Just Wine   Tastings—A Wine Experience in Gulf Coast Town Center gets my vote for...

Posted at 04:29 PM | Permalink


Hot Dish: Nov. 12, 2008

Inside the Gulfshore’s Dining Scene.   New chefs impress at Mermaid Kitchen   Sanibel’s Mermaid Kitchen's new owners Jenny and Andrew Edgar, from the United Kingdom, have brought in new chefs—Executive Chef Michael Colter and Sous Chef Joe Cox—and their food is great! I flipped over the fresh taste and beautiful presentation of Neptune’s chilled poached seafoods ($16.50), and the tenderness of the herb-crusted 14-ounce Kurobuta pork chop’s roasted shallots, candied walnuts and raspberry glace de veau ($24). Kurobuta pork chop at Mermaid Kitchen You have to try their homemade cakes and catering, too. This professional crew’s creative touches rocket Mermaid Kitchen to one of Lee County’s top spots for finer dining in a casual setting. Mermaid Kitchen,...

Posted at 08:43 PM | Permalink


Hot Dish: Oct. 22, 2008

Inside the Gulfshore’s Dining Scene   New Restaurant Sets Itself “Apart” with Global Cuisine   A Table Apart has opened on Bonita Beach Road between U.S. 41 and the Gulf, serving up great-tasting, truly balanced global cuisine with Asian, French and Italian nuances. While creative Chef Jeff Acol works in the kitchen, wife Jessica minds the front of the house. It’s been a family venture from the beginning. Everyone pitched in to paint the walls a rich gold faux finish, choose the stained glass lamps, pick the gold cloth napkins and decide the menu. The setting is a pleasant blend, suitable for both casual lunches and upscale dinners. Chef Jeff Acol and wife Jessica at A Table Apart  Jeff trained with some of Hawaii’s cooking giants, and the proof is in the...

Posted at 07:22 PM | Permalink

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