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Carmine's Ocean Grill in Palm Beach Gardens

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Carmine's Ocean Grill in Palm Beach Gardens

Abrocadabro | Mar 16, 2004 04:13 PM

Based on some recommendations, my family had dinner at Carmine's Ocean Grill in Palm Beach Gardens this past Saturday night. We got there at 5:30, beating the dinner rush. It's a huge place, and was packed by the time we left. They have a couple of fish tanks, which are good for entertaining small kids.

It's an expensive place, which I was admittedly not prepared for. My kids split a pizza, which was $12, but didn't compare to NYC $12 pizzas (and wasn't noticeably better than the pizza at the PGA National Resort restaurant). They also charged $2 for rice pilaf that my son wanted. I think my NE clam chowder was $8 -- it was tasty, but watery and didn't have as many potatoes or clams as it should have. My wife has the pear and gorgonzola salad, which was disappointing -- she said the pears had the consistency of having been canned, rather than fresh. She liked her main course of rigatoni alla vodka, which came with assorted seafood mixed in, but didn't think it merited the price (high $20's?). I had the sesame tuna which I had expected to be seared, but seemed to have been braised in soy sauce. Flavor was only OK, with a decent mix of wok vegetables and good wasabi, but I also felt like it wasn't worth the money.

Service was lousy (we sat in the back near the sushi bar). Despite our waitress having only one table, it took more than 15 minutes to place our order. We asked for them to bring out the pizza for the kids right away, but somehow it managed to take more than 25 minutes to get it out, so it was immediately followed by the adults' main courses. Refilling of water was poor and they never offered us more rolls (which were excellent -- garlic buttery tops, with soft bread inside), despite our having finished them during the seemingly interminable waits.

Overall, it was disappointing, especially because I had high hopes going in. Nevertheless, thanks to all of the past posters who recommended places in the area.

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