2017-04-20 / Cuisine

PAST REPASTS

Here are some capsule summaries of past restaurant reviews:

Coastal Peruvian Seafood & Grill, 5477 Airport-Pulling Road N., Naples; 631-6943

This lovely restaurant provides a refreshing space in which to dine on exceptionally good food. Owners Chris and Fabiola Santos are hospitable and helpful as they introduce guests to their menu. Of the various ceviche variations, we enjoyed the Ceviche 200 Miles, a sprightly blend of shrimp, squid, mussels, fish, red onions, sweet potato and corn that had a bite but wasn’t fiery hot. Marina sliders held fried red snapper fillets topped with aji amarillo-pineapple chimichurri on firm, yeasty minibuns. The Poseidon Fest was a montage of seafood cooked in the restaurant’s Josper oven, which renders proteins crisp outside, juicy within. And the Savage Tacu Tacu was a great rendition of rice and lentil pancakes with a tender skirt steak and sweet plantains. For dessert: the chocolucuma, a pie with an Oreo crumb crust, middle of caramelflavored lucuma and a drizzle of chocolate sauce. Beer and wine served.

Food: . . . . ½
Service: . . . . ½
Atmosphere: . . . . ½
Reviewed January 2016

MidTown Kitchen + Bar, 2110 Ninth St. N., Naples; 908-6558

Veteran restaurateur Michael Hernandez has created yet another inviting establishment. The hip MidTown Kitchen + Bar is much like his HobNob Kitchen, but with a parking lot and outside the confines of Old Naples. Whether you want to sit in the bar, at big booths in the dining room, outside or at a communal table, it’s all there along with a staff of well-trained servers to deliver beverages and a goodly assortment of small and large plates that run the gamut from virtuously vegetarian to confirmed carnivore. Coldwater black mussels with spicy curry, lemongrass and coconut milk could have been warmer but were tasty nonetheless, served with pita triangles for sopping up the delicious sauce. Crispy chicken thighs with cashews and kung pao sauce were also good. The vegetarian plate featured faro, roasted Brussels sprouts, baby bok choy, carrots and sweet potatoes. Even meat lovers would enjoy this hearty platter. The $28 lobster roll was pricey but large and delicious, served with sweet potato fried sprinkled with cinnamon sugar. Full bar.

Food: . . . . ½
Service: . . . . ½
Atmosphere: . . . . ½
Reviewed June 2016

Moura Bistro, Meridian Marketplace, 3369 Pine Ridge Road, Naples; 738-8883

This cozy little bistro offers the flavors of Lebanon and the Mediterranean: hummus, kibbeh, shawarma, kebabs, falafel and such. Vegetarians and meat lovers alike will find plenty on which to feast. Both the smoky baba ghannoush dip and the spinach pie were great starters. Platters of shawarma chicken and falafel came piled high. The chicken had a great smoky flavor and spicy mayo for dipping while the crisp falafel came with creamy tahini and garlic potatoes. The baklava had just enough honey but not so much that it drowned out the nuts and pastry. On Friday and Saturday night, there’s a belly dancer providing entertainment. Beer and wine served.

Food: . . . .
Service: . . . .
Atmosphere: . . . .
Reviewed July 2016

Rodizio Grill, Coconut Point, 8017 Plaza Del Lago Drive, Estero; 498-0018

The latest dining addition at Coconut Point re-creates the Brazilian churrascaria tradition of all-you-can-eat grilled meats carved tableside by gauchos wielding 3-foot skewers and scary looking knives. It’s entirely possible to eat a week’s worth of protein at one sitting. That’s not advisable for a number of reasons, one of which is that you should dedicate a portion of your appetite to the remarkably expansive salad bar and Brazilian side dishes. We sampled four cuts of beef, three pork presentations, ham and three chicken items including some exquisitely tender hearts. The tritip and a garlicky beef called bife com alho were favorites in the beef department. Bacon-wrapped chicken and pork chunks were table pleasers, too, as were sweet pork linguiça sausages and pork loin dusted with Parmesan. Aside from the occasional streak of gristle, the only real disappointment was the leg of lamb, which was overcooked and devoid of even the slightest hint of pink. Full bar.

Food: . . . ½
Service: . . . .
Atmosphere: . . . ½
Reviewed May 2016

7th Avenue Social, 849 Seventh Ave. S., Naples; 231-4553

There are a lot of Naples restaurants that offer great food, but few do it with the fun and funky vibe that 7th Avenue Social has achieved under owner Colin Estrem. The menu features innovative cocktails, house-made pickles, conch sliders, smoked fish mac and cheese, fish or barbacoa tacos, pineapple upside down cake and a host of other goodies. Stop in for drinks and relax in the eclectic collection of chairs clustered near the entrance or dine at a table where a couch (with pillows) provides two of the seats. I loved the pickles, a chile verde pork taco, the mac and cheese and the somewhat sloppy but satisfying Southern fried chicken wings. We shared a nightly special of yellowtail snapper encased in salt that was served tableside with white asparagus, crisp yucca fries and a side of Bernaise sauce. Sunday brunch and late-night menus available, too. Full bar.

Food: . . . . ½
Service: . . . . ½
Atmosphere: . . . . ½
Reviewed May 2015 ¦

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