Sunday, October 18, 2015

Bonefish Grill, Brandon

It must be a special occasion because here I am sitting at Bonefish Grill enjoying a scrumptious meal. I’ve lived in the Tampa Bay area for eleven years during which time hubby and I have visited a myriad of restaurants. My dear husband is a bit of a food snob probably because he’s such a good cook…no, I’ll use the word chef. What’s the difference? I’m a cook. I can follow a recipe and put together a balanced meal and all the parts will be done at the same time; efficient but not very exciting. My husband is a Chef – he approaches mealtime with a lot of thought, creativity and preparation. I can never understand why when I’m just barely finishing my morning coffee he is asking me “what do you want for dinner tonight?” I DON’T CARE. But he does and really I am grateful. There have been nights when we’ve enjoyed a new dish at a restaurant and he will sit back and ruminate over how this dish is composed. Usually within a week and to my utter amazement he’ll surprise me with a faithful recreation of the dish.
So is it a special occasion? Yes indeed. Our neighbors are treating us as a thank you for watching their house while they flew north for the summer. Every year they ask us the same question - where would you like to go? And we ALWAYS say Bonefish Grill. We started with Bang Bang Shrimp and Calamari. Our waitress Wendy was delightful and regaled us with stories about her New England/Italian roots. You know that thin line that separates how much banter you want with your waiter before it becomes annoying? That did not happen – she was awesome.
I had the grilled salmon with lemon butter sauce and a side of jasmine rice and spinach – delicious. Hubby had the Sea Scallops and Shrimp in a Pan Asian sauce. And our Bostonians both selected the Rainbow Trout and declared it amazing. And these guys know their seafood.
Dessert was decadent but hey, as I said it was a special occasion. Hubby and I shared the cinnamon/sugar donuts with caramel and chocolate infusions. Our friends shared the flourless chocolate brownie with ice cream, raspberry sauce and macadamia nuts. Of course we washed it all down with a couple of glasses of vino and a cappuccino or espresso and by the end of the night you had to roll me out of there. What diet?! I’ve been to the gym every day since, trying to do penance.
We were pleased to meet the restaurant’s Guest Service Associate Robert Hayman who checked in at our table to make sure we were happy. He shared with us the exciting news that Bonefish is making some big changes. They’ve already put in new flooring, but future plans include removing the wall between the dining room and the bar, and bumping out an exterior wall to create some outdoor seating. I have a lot of respect for restaurants that don't simply rest on their laurels and keep the status quo. I’m all for evolving and following the trends as long as the food and service don’t suffer for it. I trust Bonefish will get this right as they really seem to care. Robert gave me a short tour of their newly installed kitchen and managing partner Chris Gaskin graciously showed me their new state of the art POS system that tracks your food from start to finish with great efficiency.
Whether it’s a special occasion or not, treat yourself to a dinner at the always pleasing Bonefish Grill in Brandon.
1015 Providence Rd, Brandon, FL 33511 T: 813-571-5553
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