Saturday, August 01, 2009

A Trip to Bonefish Grill

Last Sunday we traveled to the Southside and ate at Bonefish Grill.

My husband had wanted to give it a whirl for a while and I had a couple of gift cards to use up. The parking lot was full, so we thought we might have to wait. But parking lots can be deceptive. The place hadn't even reached the half way mark and it was 7 PM. We were seated. The decor was generic and very dark.

We were presented with the regular menu, a specials menu, and dinner-for-two-at-a-special-price menu. We grabbed the wine list first and ordered a 2007 Hayman and Hill Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa ($29). Decent red wine, especially at that price point.

We had a coupon for a free Bang Bang Shrimp - Tender, crispy shrimp tossed in a creamy, spicy sauce (regularly $7.90).

A ton of shrimp over lettuce. Lots of tables either had these free coupons or it was very popular. The first and second shrimp bites were very good. Unfortunately, the more we ate, the more prominent the sauce became - very spicy and very creamy - reducing the shrimp to a tasteless structure designed to hold the sauce. And as much as the two of lus ike shrimp, we simply could not finish the dish. We also ordered the Fresh Ceviche - Chilled tender Bay scallops, shrimp, fresh fish, avocado, peppers, citrus & cilantro served with warm tortilla chips ($7.50).

Did this description mention anything about tomatoes??? I don't think so, but when the appetizer arrived the chopped up fish and seafood swam in a spicy tomato sauce. I would have described this as seafood gazpacho. While good, I am not a gazpacho fan - too tomatoey for me. We did not finish this dish.

The main menu featured lots of fish - grilled fish in particular, which truly reflected the name. We were a bit surprised that seafood did not figure as prominently. So, we ordered grilled fish. Hubby ordered the full portion of Norwegian Salmon ($15.90). I was pleased to see that a half portion was also available. The dish came with a veggie of the day and a selected side and a signature sauce. He chose the herbed jasmine rice and chimichurri as the sauce. He can be very finicky about his salmon. This dish he enjoyed very much.

I am not as big of a fish fan. but felt funny ordering a steak. The other specialties seemed too rich. So, I ended up ordering grilled Snake River Rainbow Trout with mashed potatoes and a side of chimichurri sauce ($15.90). This dish did not have the half portion option. And mine was very tasty. I would consider ordering it again.

The wine paired well with both dishes due to the grilled factor and the chimichurri sauce (if you order steak, make sure you ask for a side of this - very good). Other sauce options included Mango Salsa, Pan Asian (soy sauce based), and Lemon Butter.

We had a decent time, but we probably would not make a special trip. The menu descriptions in some cases were a bit off and that wee bit of difference was not as pleasant for us. The appetizers were enormous (or tastebud tiring). I would only order one for the entire table. The wine list was decent and affordable and the grilled fish was good. If you go, go for the grill.

Bonefish Grill on Urbanspoon


Mike said...

Interesting review. My wife and I have eaten at BFG a couple of times.

The first time (about 6 months ago) was entirely unremarkable. We went back a second time a couple of days ago for a late lunch/early dinner. I have to say the results were the real reason to go back.

It's not that anything was quantifiably wrong, but the ambiance was kind of sterile, and the menu was unexciting. And while the restaurant was practically empty, the hostess tried to seat us at the worst deuce in the house. We asked for a booth instead, and watched as she tried to seat three successive couples at that same table. The final couple gave in and took the table.

I must say that we shared the ceviche as an appetizer and enjoyed it. Ours didn't have the tomato presence.

But not worth a trip back.

Amanda said...

I have been to Bonefish many times--they have a great happy hour/$5 drink specials!--and I agree about the size of some of the appetizers. For two people, my fiance and I have found the crab cakes (phenomenal!) and the bacon-wrapped scallops to be more size-friendly.
Their steaks are truly good, though, if you aren't into seafood, and I've gotten the Lily's Chicken (grilled w/ goat cheese, artichoke hearts, lemon and basil sauce) many times and have loved it.
We go for the smaller appetizers because I have to save room for the creme brulee--it's outstanding and much bigger than the standard souffle cup!
Thanks for your reviews, and hope mine helps as well!