‘Watts for Dinner’ the Takeout Edition: Verdi’s – Efficient, consistent and artful

Will Watts

Not to boast, but this is my third official visit to Verdi’s American Bistro on Marco Island – but the first time I’ve taken it to go. We’ve eaten in the dining room and on the terrace. And both times, it was an exceptional experience.

As for the takeout experience, first off, Verdi’s makes it easy to order. No need to call in and risk being put on hold. You can order online from their website (verdisbistro.com).

When I picked up my order, the restaurant was just over half full and only the staff were wearing masks (thank you). It was early and I knew it would soon be filling up. I thought about what might be floating around that cozy dining space. After paying, decided to wait outside for my order to be finished. Numbers might be dropping, but there’s still a pandemic.

On to the food. This was one of the best takeout orders we’ve received; and only fell short when comparing it to the dine-in experience at Verdi’s.

Things got off to an appetizing start with the “Wiki Wiki Shrimp” ($11), crispy tempura shrimp, toasted and served with a sweet and spicy chili sauce and topped with diced tomatoes. When I first opened the container, I thought I gotten cheese curds instead. And I wouldn’t have been disappointed. I love a good tempura crust, but the dipping sauce was the star of this rodeo. I even dipped the tomato pieces in it.

We also partook of the warm baked brie ($12) featuring roasted shallots, roasted garlic, toasted walnuts and mixed greens with a balsamic drizzle. I’ve had this dish before, and even though it was good this time, it did not reach the heights of past efforts.

2020 Review:‘Watts for Dinner’: Verdi’s Bistro has the winning combinations

2020 Gallery:Photos: Verdi's Bistro, 2020

For my entrée, I picked the wild salmon ($30) which is supposed to be served blackened and with a risotto, baby bok choy and a succotash sauce. While I found the salmon to be exquisite in flavor and texture, I’m not sure I would classify it as blackened. I added a Caesar salad ($4.75 with an entrée, $10 otherwise) and it had that nice garlicky take on the dressing that I adore.     

My dining companion had the jumbo shrimp and diver scallops ($33) featuring a sautéed, lobster tomato gravy, fresh fettuccine and parmesan cheese. I must admit, I was jealous of both the look and smell of this dish. Heavenly.

This dish had three jumbo shrimp and two scallops and lots of pasta. That might not sound like a lot of protein, but he couldn’t finish it. That also might have something to do with the salad he added, which also made be jealous. It was a spinach salad ($4.75 with an entrée, $11 otherwise), but no ordinary one. It features sliced Granny Smith apples, dried cranberries, candied walnuts, Gorgonzola cheese, tomatoes, red onions, olive oil and a sweet balsamic reduction. It was practically a meal all by itself.

With Verdi’s, the quality is consistent, the prices are reasonable, and the staff is friendly and accommodating.

Consistency is the key, and Verdi’s American Bistro proves itself time and again.  

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This newspaper pays for all meals related to dining reviews. We do not solicit or accept free food.

If you go

Verdi’s American Bistro

  • 241 N Collier Blvd., Marco Island
  • 239-394-5533
  • verdisbistro.com