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Thread: Restaurant Reviews July 11-18

  1. #1
    Senior Member jeffnev's Avatar
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    Restaurant Reviews July 11-18

    Here are our restaurant reviews from our recent trip. We tried 2 "new" restaurants that we loved, 2 that we didn't love so much and 3 "old" favorites that are still worth it. I hope i don't bore you with the details.

    Mon.7/11 Amuse Bistro-Loved It!
    Our first night we were in the mood for something local to the Surf Club and decided to try Amuse Bistro in front of the Playa Linda based on some of the feedback on the BB. The restaurant was excellent and specializes in small plates/tapas size. Most of the dishes are $13 for a small plate and $23 for a full size entree. The 5 of us decided to share small plates and had a great assortment of dishes ranging from shrimp with pesto, lobster salad, pasta, steak, and barricuda. All were in delicious, light sauces. We shared desserts, with a really interesting and delicious brownie with red wine ice cream and an amzing strawberry romanoff. The service was really good and friendly and there is some connection between Amuse and Barefoot.

    Tues. 7/12 Anna Maria's- Disappointing
    After all we read about AM's on the BB we were very disappointed. I will qualify this review by saying that the owners - Chris and Anna Marie are in Italy for the month and maybe it is better when they are there. David, the only waiter/bus boy, and host is overwhelmed and the service is unacceptable. The restaurant is very pretty in the backyard of Chris' house only about 5 minutes past Wacky Wahoos-but we spent 3 hours being served wine and 2 courses. We gave up on dessert because we couldn't sit any longer. The food was good but not as great as we hoped-again maybe Anna Marie's absence in the kitchen was the difference.

    Weds. 7/14 Wacky Wahoo- Consistently Excellent Fresh Fish
    The seafood at WW is the freshest on the island to me although I never ate at Driftwood. The restaurant seemd better organized this year. We were seated exactly at the time of our reservation and the AC seemed to be working better tha I remembered last year. It is certainly a busy and fairly noisy environment but the fish was great and priced very reasonably. The side dishes of plantains and rice were also delicious. All of us had either wahoo or grouper in one form or other and all loved it. Skipped dessert here and went to the gelato store across from Texas De Brazil.

    Thurs. 7/14 Barefoot- Wonderful and Highly Recommended
    Barefoot reminds us of how Flying Fishbone used to be before it over expanded and put tables too close to each other. The owner comes from Marandi and you can definitely see the influence. We loved everything about this restaurant. The setting is beautiful, right on Surfside Beach. We chose to sit at a table in the sand or you can sit under the big palapa overlooking the beach. The service is friendly, but also very professioional and attentive. We started with escargot, vanilla skewered scallops and salad and everyone enjoyed their appetizers. Our entrees were (in no particular order) shellfish trio, Tropical Mahi Mahi, Snapper Italiano-recommended to me by the waiter and it was super, and Romance of the Sea in an amazing vanilla saffron sauce. Desserts were Let's Go Nuts (3 types of ice cream with nuts and sauce), coffee creme brulee, and a brownie with ice cream.

    Fri 7/15 Madame Janette- Still Amazing and a Favorite
    I'm always surprised when MJ gets bad reviews because we have never had a bad or even mediocre meal here. The food, wine and service is simply the best, with such a wide choice of appetizers and entrees that it is hard imagine not finding something to love here. I had Crab Cakes to start and the almond crusted grouper, which is always amazing and huge-too big for me to finish. Others had Beef Tournedos wrapped in bacon, Coconut Shrimp, and Shrimp Casserole. Only disappoinment is that they were out of the whole snapper special.

    Sat 7/16 Casa Tua- Best Pizza on the Island (IMO)
    We decided to eat a bit smaller and shared a few different pizzas. Hard to go wrong here, although the service was slow as there was a party of 26 being served and it brought the kitchen to its knees.

    Sun 7/17 Pam Pam - OK
    Always wanted to try this restaurant as Ii heard the chef had won a few local competitions. He must have had the night off because our food was very mediocre. The restaurant is on a dirt road just past Chef's Tables in a small hotel/guest house. The setting was very nice in a tropical like garden and the people were super friendly. Our server, Juan Carlos used to work at CDM and was a really nice guy, but ultimately the food was disappointing - dishes just didn't taste as good as they sounded and I doubt we will return. However, it was priced very reasonably and had live music throughout dinner. Not a bad experience, just not anything to rave about.
    Last edited by jeffnev; 07-20-2011 at 08:51 PM.

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    Senior Member Arubalisa's Avatar
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    Thumbs up

    Thanks for sharing.

    Having just returned, it is especially interesting to see how others view things.


    Mon.7/11 Amuse Bistro-Loved It!
    The service was really good and friendly and there is some connection between Amuse and Barefoot.
    Do you know what the connection is? We are sorry we did not go to Amuse instead of Soenchi. Live and learn by experience.

    Tues. 7/12 Anna Maria's- Disappointing
    we spent 3 hours being served wine and 2 courses.
    This is not the first time I have heard this complaint. Dh and I had gone back and forth on whether or not to try AM's and even though we love a leisurely relaxing dinner, 3 hours for 2 courses is totally unacceptable.

    Thurs. 7/14 Barefoot- Wonderful and Highly Recommended
    Gosh could not agree more.

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    Senior Member Shelly's Avatar
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    Great report Jeffnev, only one question....is Amuse Bistro indoor seating? DH has a problem with outdoor seating in the heat. I practically have to drug him to take him to MJ's every year!!!

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    Senior Member jeffnev's Avatar
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    We sat outside at Amuse as it was very pleasant out that night. I believe they did have indoor seating as well. This space used to be Sushi-Ya before they moved downtown last year.

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    Senior Member jeffnev's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=Arubalisa;207511]Thanks for sharing.

    Having just returned, it is especially interesting to see how others view things.

    Do you know what the connection is? We are sorry we did not go to Amuse instead of Soenchi. Live and learn by experience.

    The hostess told us that the owners of Amuse and Barefoot are friends and used to work together at Marandis and refer people to each others' restaurant although I suspect it may be a closer relationship. The business card actually has Amuse on 1 side and Barefoot on the other. We would have never though to have tried it if not for a review I read on this BB recently.

    This is not the first time I have heard this complaint. Dh and I had gone back and forth on whether or not to try AM's and even though we love a leisurely relaxing dinner, 3 hours for 2 courses is totally unacceptable.

    I wanted to love AM's so much but it was just unacceptable to drag us through a 3 hour dinner. i would like to try it next year if Chris is there but my DW has informed me that I will have to go without her and she will eat her Italian food in NJ Chris should really close the restaurant down when he goes on vacation.

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    Senior Member Arubalisa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeffnev View Post
    I wanted to love AM's so much but it was just unacceptable to drag us through a 3 hour dinner.
    I just told my dh and he used multiple and basically no way in

    i would like to try it next year if Chris is there but my DW has informed me that I will have to go without her and she will eat her Italian food in NJ
    She MUST be related to my dh, Italian, born and raised in Jersey . THAT is something HE would say.

    Shelly, Amuse has to get a decent breeze at night this time of year since it does face East. I know Soenchi on the other hand faces West and being totally enclosed on the East side, received no air.

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    Senior Member lindon's Avatar
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    Great report!! Thanks, we knew we wanted to try Barefoot, but now we have another one to add to our list, Amuse. I don't think it was there last year when we were there. Two new restaurants for us to try. Can't wait!!!

  8. #8
    Senior Member jeffnev's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=Arubalisa;207519] I just told my dh and he used multiple and basically no way in

    My crew was uncensored after the meal

    She MUST be related to my dh, Italian, born and raised in Jersey . THAT is something HE would say.

    My DW's name is Toni-need I say more.

  9. #9
    Aruba since 1979
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    Andrea J.'s Avatar
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    you folks are too funny.


    re: Anna Maria...............that is just unacceptable. imo, if the owners were going to be leaving the country, they should have CLOSED the restaurant. having it closed for that period of time would have been far far better than having bad reviews. in all honesty, who can sit for THAT long?!?!

    re: pam pam ...............again, unacceptable. we stopped going to pam pam because after a few visits we began to get pretty lousy meals. i think we have been there 5 times and the last 2 times there, meals were disappointing.

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    Wink

    Hey, watch it guys....jerseygirl here is Italian and "hence the name" born and raised in Jersey....and Antoinette is my middle name! I do agree w/you however, 3 hours....just too dang long!

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