Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Shore Diner: Creative Florida Coastal Cuisine

Shore Diner is the creation of longtime Sarasota restaurateur Mark Caragiulo and partner Tom Leonard, whose previous triumphs include the wildly popular Owen’s Fish Camp and Nancy’s Bar-B-Q, both in the historic Burns Square district, plus the highly anticipated new Shore on Longboat Key on the spectacular waterfront location of Moore’s Stone Crab. Perched above the luxury surf-retail store located below the restaurant, also called Shore, the sleek, bright modern space makes a bold architectural statement, with lots of natural wood, stone and two 'living walls' — vertical gardens that frame the end walls of the open-air terrace. Opened in 2012, the menu focuses on Florida-inspired coastal cuisine using locally sourced farm produce plus baby lettuces, tomatoes, radishes and beets grown in the raised kitchen gardens on the roof of the restaurant. The interior of Shore is stunning, with outdoor seating overlooking St Armands Circle, and a large, high-ceilinged main dining room with handsome long bar and enclosed patio with a retractable roof for stargazing on fine Florida evenings. But it's not just the good looks that attract diners. Shore's inspired menu of creative coastal cuisine showcases sensational dishes such as Key West Shrimp and Scallop Risotto, Lump Blue Crab Cakes, Lobster Sliders, Fish Tacos and their sensational Lobster, Shrimp & Crab Cobb Salad with avocado, bacon, egg and chopped romaine lettuce with a yuzu-tarragon vinaigrette. Happy hour runs from 3:00-6:00pm and features six small plates and six cocktail specials for just $6 each, including Shore's popular 'Tequila Mockingbird', and bartender Mike Yoder with his 'Nice Guy Mike's Barrel Aged Cocktails' — it's a "shore" thing on St Armands!

Overlooking St Armands Circle, Shore is a bright modern space with lots of natural wood, stone and two 'living walls' — vertical gardens that frame the end walls of the open-air terrace

View from Shore overlooking St Armands Circle

Opened in 2012, the menu focuses on Florida-inspired coastal cuisine using locally sourced farm produce 

A lovely glass of Gavi di Gavi and Argentinian Malbec from Mendoza

Blue Lump Crab cake salad served with Butter Lettuce, Avocado Miso Ginger Aioli and Grilled Corn Vinaigrette

Lobster, Shrimp and Crab Cobb Salad with Avocado, Bacon, Egg, Tomato and Arugula with Meyer Lemon Vinaigrette

Roast Corvina with Puree of Carrot, Ginger, Basil and Lemon Air 
Serves 4
Recipe courtesy of Chef Mark Traugutt

4 6-ounce portions of corvina
2 tbsp flour
2 tbsp vegetable oil
12 oz diced carrot
1/2 cup diced leek
1 small piece grated ginger
1 stalk diced celery
1/4 cup diced shallot
3 cups chicken stock
1/4 tsp agar agar or powdered gelatin
Zest of 1 lemon
Juice of 1 lemon
1/2 cup basil leaves
1 cup heavy cream
Sea salt
Fresh ground pepper

Preheat oven to 350°F. In a small pots add the oil over medium heat and sauté the leek, ginger, shallot
and celery until opaque. Add 2 cups of chicken stock to leek mixture and bring to a simmer. Add the carrot to the mixture and simmer for about 20 minutes, or until the carrots are soft. Take off the heat and transfer the mixture to a food processor and pulse until blended. Strain the mixture, then add 1/4 cup of heavy cream and salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

In another small pot bring 1 cup of chicken stock to a simmer with 1/4 cup of heavy cream, lemon zest and lemon juice. When mixture comes to a simmer, turn off the heat, add the basil, season with salt and pepper and let rest for 20 minutes.

Pat the skin side portion of your fish with paper towels until dry. In a sauté pan heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high heat until you see light wisps of smoke. Coat the skin of the corvina with
the flour and set the fish in the pan skin side down for 2-4 minutes, until it's crispy. Turn the fish over and place the pan in the oven for 10 minutes.

While the fish is in the oven, take the basil cream mixture and add the agar agar or gelatin. Use a hand blender or whisk to blend the mixture until it creates bubbles or foam. Place some of the carrot puree on a plate and top with corvina. Use a spoon to carefully scoop out foam from the basil cream and place on top of the fish.

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