REMIX: Estero's Blue Water Bistro keeps it fresh

Crab-Lobster cake at Blue Water Bistro in Coconut Point in Estero.

Photo by Chelle Koster Walton

Crab-Lobster cake at Blue Water Bistro in Coconut Point in Estero.

Classic mojito at Blue Water Bistro in Coconut Point in Estero.

Photo by Chelle Koster Walton

Classic mojito at Blue Water Bistro in Coconut Point in Estero.

Homemade onion rings with chipotle barbecue sauce at Blue Water Bistro in Coconut Point in Estero.

Photo by Chelle Koster Walton

Homemade onion rings with chipotle barbecue sauce at Blue Water Bistro in Coconut Point in Estero.

Here’s a place that can do both mixology and foodology with equal aplomb.

Blue Water Bistro

23151 Village Shops Way, Coconut Point, Estero

Price Range: Starters $4.70-15.90; entrees $10.90-$33.60.

Information: (239) 949-2583; www.bluewaterbistro.net

— One might easily enough assume, upon flipping through Blue Water Bistro’s multi-page drink menu and noticing the prominence of the bar in its spacious dining room that this Coconut Point original is all about the drinking.

Then one also notices the prominence of the shiny display kitchen and the vast variety of selections on the dinner menu, and it all comes into perspective- Here’s a place that can do both mixology and foodology with equal aplomb.

From six flavors of mojitos alone, we picked the classic, which came colorfully decorated, all minty, and garnished with a sugarcane stick.

Not an easy choice from a menu of 10 martinis, five different types of sidecars, dozens of wines, and more than 50 brands of tequila: It was perfectly constructed and refreshing on a hot summer’s day.

So hot, most diners opted for indoors rather than the festive patio. One in a line of concept restaurants brought to you by the gr8food.net group, this one concentrates on seafood, but with the same oomph and lack of timidity as Chops, Pazzo, et al.

Take for instance the mango habañero coulis I ordered recently with my grilled swordfish. Other restaurants might tend to tone down the inherent fire of the tropical habañero pepper. To my great gratification, this one did not.

I opted for the Fish List menu, which changes with a half-dozen or so selections of what’s fresh in the swimming world. You then have your choice from seven sauces and about a dozen sides. I picked the baby zucchini pomodoro, a successfully light complement with slightly bitter patty pan squash, red sauce, and parmesan.

The regular menu lists burgers, steaks, a kurobuta pork chop, and more than a dozen specialties. Our server pointed out the macadamia and panko crusted mahi as the most popular entrée, followed by grouper scampi and blackened salmon with bourbon and brown sugar glaze.

We had tried the latter on a previous visit, and settled upon the Captain’s Cut, an absolutely divine, thick filet of sea bass miso-glazed with a wasabi crumb crust and served with a stunning mélange of julienne vegetables, mushrooms, and ginger; baby bok choy; and marvelous sauces.

It’s always comforting to find that Blue Water consistently serves quality beyond the ho-hum. We’ve dined here several times and have enjoyed the mix-and-match fish options and the shrimp vodka penne.

On the appetizer menu, we love the tequila-roasted oysters and “morning after” mussels. This time we stretched our faves to try the homemade onion rings with chipotle barbecue sauce – crispy, well-seasoned, and wonderfully complemented by the sauce – and 3 Crab-Lobster cake – a delicate mound of meat with chunks of king and stone crab and Maine lobster embedded. The smooth remoulade sauce ringed with citrus-infused oil cinched the deal.

Unlike the cocktail and dinner menus, the dessert menu is succinct with only four choices.

Whew! Thank goodness after all those other decisions, this one was simple and simply luscious: key lime pie with splotches of tequila-blueberry sauce and mango coulis, topped with lovely vanilla chantilly cream.

© 2011 marconews.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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