Saturday, June 21, 2014

Beachside Grille, Redington Shores, FL

Restaurants on the beach side of Gulf Boulevard are few and far between these days...and this little nook tucked away in a tiny, older strip center just south of Park Boulevard would be easy to miss if you weren't looking for it.  So look for it.

The venue is very small (perhaps seating 24 at tables and 5 or 6 at the bar) but charming, awash in adorable beach kitsch and decorated in soothing tones of sea blue, terra-cotta and white.

Our party of six received friendly, knowledgeable service from Redington hospitality veteran Rick, who was a sight for sore eyes. The lunch menu was somewhat limited, but provided enough options to satisfy all tastes at the table.  We started with Beachside Grille's whimsical, "beach boardwalk" take on Chicken and Waffles...a waffle cone filled with bleu cheese coleslaw and topped with buffalo chicken tenders. This proved to be real crowd-pleaser. Slaw fresh and crisp - check (bonus points for the bleu cheese infusion).  Chicken tenders tender - check. Generous lathering of hot sauce - check.  I'll take this over an ice cream cone any day.

Smoked fish spread was standard beach fare, kicked up by its accoutrements of diced tomato, chopped onion and capers. Captain's Wafers might've garnered more love from me than the Saltines which were presented.

Both soups our party tried were hearty, flavorful and above average.  Serving sizes are massive...they're practically a meal in themselves.   Cajun Gumbo:

Black Bean Soup:

If a low point of the meal must be identified, it came in the form of some huge and extremely tough rings of calamari...over-breaded, over-cooked and served at room temp.  Potential exists, but this was not a stellar day for the house squid.

Grouper sandwiches were quite fresh-tasting and highly enjoyed by teens and adults alike.  The "Traditional", priced at a very reasonable $12.99, is served with a choice of sides (our gurlz selected off-the-chain Italian al dente pasta salad laden with tons of herbs and fresh veggies):

I opted for the Grouper Reuben and my request to substitute coleslaw for sauerkraut on the sammie was met without the blink of an eye.  I so love a place that's reasonably accommodating to the preferences of their diners...especially when no one's asking for the kitchen to turn itself upside down.  More sweet, recently-off-the-hook grouper appeared nestled on rye toast with crunchy coleslaw and a light slathering of Thousand Island dressing. Yummmzzz.  And I must reiterate as to the fabulosity of the pasta salad.

UD went beach rogue and zeroed in on the mighty Slaw Dog...and a righteous dawg it was.  A premium frank (guessing Nathan's or Hebrew National) was delivered on a top-notch poppy-seed bun and laden with the aforementioned fine-ass crunchy coleslaw.  Could it get any better than this?  Yes.  Rapture came in the form of some exceptionally crispy on the outside and tender on the inside, probably twice fried, slabs of  french fry heaven.

Final word:  Pleasing and affordable lunch on the beach.  I definitely see a return visit in my not-too-distant future for a casual beach dinner.

Beachside Grille on Urbanspoon
My blog entries contain the unmitigated, and sometimes unforgiving, dining truths and perceptions I experience as an ordinary restaurant patron. Every meal I post about has been fully paid for by one of the participating members of my personal dining party. I do not engage in the gratis blogger freebie dining events I'm constantly invited to attend and never will. If I ooze font-like love for a restaurant in my blog, it's because they totally earned it…not because they gave me free food or knew I was going to share the experience on the internet.

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