There is a national craving for authentic Korean dishes, and not that many cities are doing much about it. But in Sarasota, The Table Creekside added to its ever-changing global menu an outstanding Korean ahi tuna bowl. It comes to the table in a 400-degree crock and the server finishes off the dish tableside by adding egg yolk and yuzu dressing to a bowl that contains square slices of ahi tuna (rare), organic spinach, cabbage slaw, roasted shitake mushrooms, asparagus cut in bite-size pieces and a cilantro garnish that gives this rich and earthy dish a clean finish. It’s dramatic and deeply delicious.
Longboat Key's Dry Dock Grill is worth visiting for the views alone, but it helps that the restaurant also serves one of the area's best grouper sandwiches ($16.95). Grilled till the flesh is just cooked all the way through, the fish needs nothing but a shake of salt and a slather of tartar sauce. Chow down on one while taking in the uninterrupted vistas of Sarasota Bay, and you'll trick yourself into thinking you're on vacation.
While it is hard to choose just one favorite from the new Coral House's brunch menu, the Texas Breakfast ($13) is a unique find. Texas slow-smoked pulled pork--which is smoked out back of the restaurant for 12 hours--is piled on some of the best corn cakes in town, along with two over-easy eggs and a swirl of mole sauce. This is stick-to-your-ribs comfort food.
Smoothie King just introduced a line of coffee smoothies, and lucky us: the brand dropped off a bunch of samples for us to try. The cinnamon latte high-protein smoothie was a hit--icy cold and incredibly rich, it’s made with whey protein, protein blend, cold brew coffee, almonds, non-fat dry milk, turbinado sugar and lots of ground cinnamon. It tastes like an ice cream milkshake, but far more virtuous.
If you're dining at Seasons 52, we recommend starting your meal with an order of meatballs ($5 at happy hour)--a simple dish done just right. Three tender, wood-grilled meatballs that practically melt-in-your-mouth are served with flavorful roasted tomatoes and a generous dusting of Parmesan cheese. Pair with a glass of wine and toast the evening.