Chef's Blog

May 9, 2013

Finding Flavor in Unexpected Places

from Chef Allan Gazaway

On a recent trip to Key Largo I had a chance to drop into Tasters Restaurant to try what the locals called “cutting edge cuisine”. After passing the strip mall location twice, I eventually found the inconspicuous restaurant and began to question our decision. However, what you couldn’t see from the road was the restaurant’s back deck that overlooks the tarpon-filled bay and vast mangroves.

What we received was a wonderful presentation of a whole freshly speared Hogfish, and then a truly great twist on a common Asian staple – fried rice. This fried rice dish was not only accented with perfectly rendered down pork belly but was also made more decadently topped with a fried egg. Needless to say we followed the meal with our cholesterol meds.

The funniest part of the night came as the waiter explained the restaurants’ “green” philosophy as he dumped the small amount of scraps over the rail to the hungry tarpon waiting below. That is truly the circle of life! This experience goes to prove you should never judge a book by its cover. Great food and great entertainment all in a location I have driven by for years!

What unexpected flavor experiences have you had?

Let me know –

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