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Friday, June 24, 2016

Lunch at Araya


is a restaurant in Naples, FL featuring sushi, grilled Asian and Thai cuisine. Araya in Thai means rare. My dining companion (DC) and I that day decided to go to Araya for lunch.

They have a pleasant, commodious indoor dining area


and outdoor seating as well.

DC and I decided to try a number of starters off their Menu

Duck buns were first.


Steamed buns were filled with duck, cucumber, scallions and hoisin sauce. Not bad.



Korean BBQ short ribs were ordered with kimchee. Not bad but I prefer more chutzpah with my short ribs, these were a bit anemic for me.


Tuna Yukke was served with Masago, avacado, seaweed salad and shredded cucumber. Tasty!

The two standouts of this meal were Hamachi carpaccio, with jalapeno, cilantro and Yuzu/Ponzu sauce. The sauce must have additional Yuzu added to it or it's just a superfluous descriptive.


This was excellent, I could have eaten two more.

The grilled octopus was also a standout.


It was great and served with a garlic as well as a pepper Aioli. I am a "sucker" for octopus and this fit the bill.

The food at Araya, though not rare, was very good. I liked most and loved some of what was ordered that day. The food piqued my interest, and I will absolutely return to try more items.


That's that for another post on forks.

Araya
2650 Immokalee Rd.
Naples, FL 34110
(239)593-3344

Sunday, June 19, 2016

A Media Dinner at Sea Salt

Public relations (PR) is sort of a nebulous term to the uninitiated of us. What exactly is PR? The Public Relations Society of America defines it more globally as a tool to help “an organization and its publics adapt mutually to each other.” This is done in a variety of ways. These include, but are not limited to, press releases, speech writing, creating special events targeting the public and media and market research on a client's messaging and outreach. To some of these ends, some local media outlets and I were contacted by Preddy PR , a local PR firm, to attend a media dinner at Sea Salt, a restaurant in Naples.



Sea Salt was preparing something really special for all of us. As a courtesy to both Preddy PR and Sea Salt and of possible interest for readers, I had documented the evening.

A social hour preceded our meal, and participants, mostly knowing each other in a journalistic capacity, had a chance to catch up.



A number of very interesting passed starters were served to participants. These included truffle caramel drops, the combination of the two intriguing,


liquid Mozzarella, cherry tomato and balsamic jelly


and completely over the top lobster Rubens.



We all sat down in anticipation of a very nice meal,


while one of the proprietors,  Ingrid Aielli, made all of us comfortable with her savior faire.


The meal was a complement to all attending, and included a wine pairing with each of the nine courses.


I do not want readers to get lost in the details, but wines served included a French Rose, Vouvray, a Malbec, California Cabernet and the dessert wine Sauternes.

For those of you who do prefer the details, here was the evening's menu.



It was interesting watching the chefs plate out some of our courses,



and included chefs Brooke Kravetz, Sous Chef, Josh Zeman, Executive Chef, Jason Goddard, Corporate Executive Chef and Fabrizio Aielli, Chef Owner.

Here were some of the standouts, though the whole evening's meal was quite wonderful.

Prosciutto di Parma, frozen Gorgonzola and pistachio drops,

Bigoli and octopus with Amatriciana sauce,


Breaded swordfish (Milanese) with egg, capers, anchovy and rosemary sauce and


Piedmontese New York strip, seared Porcini mushrooms, ricotta and potato Mousseline.


Everyone finished with a Humbolt Fog cheese with burnt marshmallow (Brulee) and chocolates and mini macarons.


I cannot thank the proprietors, Fabrizio and Ingrid Aielli, in addition to Preddy PR enough for their organization and execution of this delightful social and dining experience. I hope I will be fortunate to be included on their guest list next year!



Sea Salt
1186 3rd St. S.
Naples, FL 34102
(239)434-7258

Friday, June 10, 2016

Three Latin Restaurants Worth the Drive In Naples, FL




Salsa Brava is a restaurant that serves Mexican Cuisine.
Jose, the owner, serves many excellent Mexican dishes here. Some of them are recipes handed down from his grandmother.
My dining companion and I tried a number of items on our visit.