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Saturday, May 28, 2016

Happy Hour at Fish Crazy (closed)

is a restaurant in Naples, FL. As the discerning reader may surmise, they are a seafood restaurant. 
Fish Crazy has been open since early 2015.

Recently they have started a happy hour that runs from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. I am always looking for a good happy hour, and heard it was exceptional. As such, my dining companion (DC) and I went to take a peek.

Happy hour is offered at both the bar,

and restaurant.

Their happy hour is extensive

and has 11 food items on it. There are also "dos para uno" specials on beverage.

DC and I tried a number of things, really too many.

DC ordered a fish taco, seafood quesadilla and sriracha-cucumber tuna tartare.

The fish tacos were very good.

Fried grouper was served with chopped cabbage, tomato, avocado, cilantro, pico de gallo and a chipotle flavored creme sauce.

The seafood quesadilla was next and came with gulf shrimp and scallops.

Highly recommended.

The sriracha-cucumber tuna tartare was excellent and was served with seaweed salad as a garnish.

I am a fool for fish tacos, so that's what I ordered. Additionally I wanted to try the grouper fingers.

They were very good as were the firecracker shrimp, which were fried shrimp in a sort of spicy duck sauce.

DC has not eaten much alligator so DC ordered, off the happy hour menu, a gator taco.

We thought the kitchen had made a mistake and given us fish. No, it just looked like a fish taco. Another highly recommended item.

I had to try one more thing, the grouper fish and chips.

It may have been that I was so full at this point I wasn't into eating anymore but although good, my least favorite of the evening. It tasted pretty good with a drizzle of malt vinegar.

If you like seafood, the happy hour at Fish Crazy is one of the best in town. The seafood is excellent on par with the value.

I highly recommend this happy hour and no question, will be back.

Fish Crazy
14700 Tamiami Trail N.
Naples, FL 34110

Friday, May 27, 2016

Three Naples/Fort Myers Restaurants Serving Breakfast Worth a Drive

Breakfast lovers are different. They all seem to have their favorite breakfast spot that is off the radar and known to few but themselves. There are many in the area to choose from and if you are not a breakfast aficionado, it can be a difficult choice. Here are three that have made an impression on me. Read More

Friday, May 20, 2016

A Blue Ribbon Evening:Peter Michael Wines at Bleu Provence

is an establishment in Naples, FL that serves French food. The proprietors are Jacques Cariot and his wife, Lysielle, who is the restaurant’s Chef De Cuisine. 
Recently, Bleu Provence sponsored a very special food and wine pairing with Peter Michael Wine.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Kat Epple and Nathan Dyke at The Happehatchee Center

is a 5 acre preserve of land in Estero, FL. As you enter Happehatchee

and learn more about the property it has an interesting history. It was acquired by the Girl Scouts in the middle of the 20th century until sold to a private individual in 1972. Over time, it became a property that was environmentally and spiritually friendly and became open to the public in a limited fashion in 2013.

The Happehatchee Center offers a number of community events. There are Children's programs, Events for whom English is not a primary language and spiritual events such as Yoga in Nature.

Perusing the center they had some interesting things including a Labyrinth 

and a bridge (albeit closed) across the Estero River.

Recently, the center sponsored a concert by Emmy and Peabody awardee Kat Epple accompanied by Nathan Dyke. 

Before the performance, there was a potluck dinner with many interesting items. Attendees brought shared items such as deviled eggs,

fried chicken, corn bread and Quinoa.

Attendees had a great time sharing

and engaging in conversation.

The musical performance by Kat Epple and Nathan Dyke was exceptional.

Ms. Epple per usual held a stunning woodwind performance

while Mr, Dyke complemented on instruments such as the Digeridoo 

 and the Ngoni

This was a wonderful evening of food, camaraderie and music. Highly recommended.

Happehatchee Center
8791 Corkscrew Rd.
Estero, FL 33928

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Lunch at Brutus Seafood Market and Eatery

is a restaurant on Marathon, FL. Marathon is a good stopping point when visiting the keys as it is about halfway down the Overseas Highway between Miami and Key West.

As you approach the restaurant

there is indoor dining and a seafood market

in addition to outside dining in a Tiki Bar setting.

My dining companion tried a few things off their Menu.

Conch salad was first and was as good as it looks.

I had a grouper basket with cole slaw and a side salad,

while my dining companion had a snapper sandwich with cheese and cole slaw.

All of the food here tasted like it just came out of the water. Fresh as fresh can be and totally delicious. This is far from fine dining but apropos for Florida Keys seafood. 
The lunch fare at Brutus Seafood Market and Eatery is highly recommended.

Brutus Seafood Market and Eatery
6950 Overseas Hwy (Mile marker 51)
Marathon, FL 33050 

Monday, May 16, 2016

Chefs Collaborative and Pig Roast on the Beach at The Pink Shell Resort

Chefs Collaborative is a national culinary activist group lobbying for change in the food industry.
They agree with almost everyone that food is fundamental for life. They believe that good food begins with good environmental practices, farming and animal husbandry. They also espouse using only the best, minimally processed ingredients as the basis for great cuisine. They look to the greater culinary community for change and helping to preserve local farming and fishing concerns.

On Sunday, June 12th the local Chefs Collaborative liaison will be hosting a Meat Matters event at the Pink Shell Resort on Fort Myers Beach. 

Meat Matters is an educational fund raiser concerning itself with the far from judicious use of antibiotics in meat and poultry production.

There will be a pig roast on the beach and 6 chef stations serving  bison, lamb, beef, pork, chicken, vegetables, and grains. The event is open to the public.

Participating chefs will be Craig Panneton and David Rashty from The Pink Shell Resort, George Alexakis and James Frasier from FGCU, Pyro Rodriguez from the catering company Pyro's Creations and Celebrity Chef Robyn Almodovar from Hell's Kitchen and Chopped.

There will also be beer, wine and spirit pairings with the food served. 
This promises to be a wonderful day of food, beverage and heightened awareness of present and alternative methods of meat and poultry production.

275 Estero Blvd.
Fort Myers Beach, FL 33931

Tickets: Meat Matters Fort Myers

Friday, May 13, 2016

Three Naples Beachfront Restaurants Worth Taking a Drive To

The Turtle Club is a beachfront restaurant. They have been open almost 20 years.
The Turtle Club is about a block away from the Ritz-Carlton at Vanderbilt Beach, which towers over it.
Although it is a much different dining experience from the Ritz, it by no means stands in its shadow. Read More...

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

21st Annual Taste of the Beach

is an annual event held on Fort Myers Beach, FL. It is held to benefit the Greater Fort Myers Beach Friends of the Arts. TOB is sponsored by the Greater Fort Myers Beach Chamber of Commerce. TOB was held from 11 A.M. to 4 P.M.

This year over 20 restaurants participated which attracted thousands.

Although not all inclusive, here were some of the participants.

Chloes in Diamondhead Beach Resort and Spa served steak sandwiches and pork tenderloin.

I tried the pork tenderloin and it was very tender and moist, some of the best I have had.

La Ola Surfside Restaurant served tomato-corn or pineapple-mango salsa with chips

and bacon-wrapped shrimp among other treats.

had a variety of dishes including these really great looking lobster rolls.

were serving shrimp and scallop ceviche and baby back ribs.

Even a resident mermaid was enjoying her day at TOB.

prepared Mahi tacos 

and Shrimp Mancini, which were breaded, deep fried shrimp with Boom Boom Sauce. Tasty.

Salted caramel cheesecake also awaited those visiting the Salty Crab booth. (N.B.- this is what was served to the jurors of the event)

served up a drunken shrimp cocktail. It was drunken as the cocktail sauce was made from vodka bloody marys. 

A crab avocado mango stack was also on the menu and was really good.

While Bootlegger's Waterfront Barbeque was busy grilling their meats,

offerings included beef tenderloin satays

and a really nice looking key lime pie with Oreo crust.

If you wanted fair "fare" there was kettle corn and lemon aid.

It was a hot one that day so the beer joint was jumpin'.

Jack's Farm to Fork served lion fish with English pea purée, and a lemon beurre blanc,

Cirlcle C Chicken, over Farro Succotash with thyme butter and carrot purée

and Flour less Chocolate cake.

Attendees voted for a variety of categories through the  Lee County Supervisor of Elections,

while a variety of celebrity jurors evaluated food items served to them. I had a peek into the jurying process and it was serious business.

These included best appetizer, best beef or veal dish, best chicken dish, best seafood dish, best dessert and the coveted peoples choice award.

Here is how restaurant participants Fared.

What was really great was that virtually all of the restaurant's offerings were in the 3 to 4 dollar range. There was a competing Event that day and I heard through the grapevine that it's price points were nowhere near that.

There is a lot of construction at the moment on Fort Myers Beach roadways. I arrived there about 11:30 and it was very smooth sailing in terms of traffic and parking.

TOB is a very nice event and highly recommended. I cannot wait to attend the 22nd annual next year!

Taste of the Beach
Old San Carlos Blvd.
Fort Myers Beach, FL 33931