Fashioned after the Brazilian Court in Palm Beach, this boutique hotel is the former Beach Comber, an historic property dating back to the early 1950's.
Hotelier Mary Brandt has made a number of changes since taking over, converting the high-rise part of the hotel into condos, keeping only those chic suites with private patios surrounding the pool for guests. She has also added fitness classes and yoga on the pool deck and the beach, as well as an organic garden, growing produce and herbs for the restaurant.
About the restaurant, Veranda E, Brandt recruited innovative California chef Michael Kang to help revamp the kitchen and menu. The restaurant is delightfully al fresco; the poolside trees strewn with lights for a magical setting.
Serving fish flown in from Hawaii and organic meats from North Carolina, among other specialties, the energetic Chef Kang and his staff use combinations and ingredients that 'foodies' will go mad over. The concept of each dish is so simple, it is prepared with the idea of creating that elusive, perfect bite. If you are adventurous and want an even bigger treat, don't order off the menu. Instead let the chef and the expert kitchen staff prepare something special for you. Just tell them your wishes and how many dishes; we had eight.
First up was a small portion of curry rock shrimp and scallops that I want to eat full size, for a poolside luncheon with a cold glass of viognier.
|Foie Gras A La Mode|
|Carpacio of squid|
|Asian Pear and Humboldt Fog Cheese salad|
|Crispy, whole snapper|
We also had wild tiger prawns from Nigeria in a sake sauce and the most tender dry aged, bone-in ribeye with porcini hoisin sauce, a killer combination of east meets west. This is sadly when the white flag of foodie surrender was raised. So naturally a dessert course was brought out, just to make it official.
You might not be able to pronounce all of the ingredients used in the dishes at Veranda E but you won't care, your taste buds will be tickled in ways you will dream about when you go home.
If you have a special event or wedding in the future, give The Escalante a look. This historic hideaway has charm, pays attention to detail and has a restaurant that will hold you hostage with amazing meals during your stay.
Note: Dinner prices range from $14 to $55