We're currently on our best week of the year - annual vacation with family on Longboat Key - and wanted to share my impressions of the two places I've been planning to try for awhile.
First of all, we much preferred Beach Bistro to Euphemia Haye. Atmosphere: Although the tables were closer at BB, the sound is muffled well and you can't hear what they're saying at the table next to you. At EH, with the high ceilings, nearby conversations seemed magnified and it was difficult to hear at our own table.
At BB the four of us ate warm Roma tomato salad, foie gras, lobsterscargot, crab meat cocktail, bouillabaisse, "food heaven" (lamb, lobster, and foie gras), tilefish, kicker grilled jumbo shrimp, and creme brulee. All were nothing short of spectacular. It was a wonderful dining experience.
At EH the four of us started off with nova scotia salmon, sashimi, and escargot, and all those were fine. Entrees were sweetbreads, grouper, shrimp and cappellini, and roast duckling. The sweetbreads, grouper, and shrimp were excellent, but the duck (which is their specialty) was barely warm and very dry. My brother told the waiter and he took it back to the kitchen and returned immediately with another roast duck. This one was still hot, but it, too, was very dry. My brother apologized and explained he considered it inedible, and although the waiter said he was very surprised, he offered to bring him something that could be prepared quickly. He agreed to veal piccata, which arrived in five minutes and was very good.
Living in New York City, my brother eats duck regularly in Chinese restaurants and on Long Island where there are duck farms and it's always very fresh, and it is very juicy and moist. Perhaps it's common for other types of roast duck to be dry? We were very surprised by this at EH, especially when this is their specialty.
We then went upstairs to the Haye Loft for dessert, where the dessert "tray" was a large table covered with millions of calories! I have NEVER seen anything like it before! My husband had a delicious three-berry pie and I had a cream puff that was as light as air (but has already taken up residence on my hips!)
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