In these tough times, I'm noticing that many of the longtime popular upscale restaurants aren't nearly as busy as last season, and moderately priced places are filled. Chops, for example has always been a tough reservation in season, but now is easy to dine at.
A Separate Table, on Bonita Beach Road, advertises global cuisine. Their menu is quite creative with terrific prices. The place was packed on Saturday night. Without a reservation, we would've had an hour wait minimum. The wine list has interesting selections with most bottles under $40.
They advertise a Roasted Portabella Montrachet "Pizza"($8), which is a portabella mushroom topped with goat cheese, 2 tomato tapenade, toasted pine nuts, arugula, and balsamic drizzle. Delicious. Also very good was Summer Chilled Soup($7)-pureed oven roasted tomatoes, cucumber ribbon salad, seasoned grape tomatoes, and wasabi essence. It was a striking presentation.
I had Pan Roasted Cornish Game Hen($19), herb basted, with mashed potatoes and natural pan jus. This is a simple dish but the hen was moist with a crispy skin and the potatoes were smooth and quite flavorful. Pan seared day scallops were one of the more expensive entrees at $26 but they were large and juicy accompanied by roasted corn and mushroom hash, curry corn sauce, and chili drizzle. This could easily have been a $35 entree at a more upscale restaurant.
Apple tart tatin was a great ending-butter crust, caramel apples, and Royal Scoop vanilla ice cream.
It's difficult to find a restaurant with cooking as sophisticated as this at these prices. They have an excellent concept and I wish them well!
A Table Apart
4295 Bonita Beach Rd.