LifestylesPulse

Fish by José Andrés is not to be missed

Interesting new additions intermingle with classic favorites

What a difference two-and-a-half years makes! Yes, I literally can’t believe it’s been that amount of time since I last visited Fish by Jose Andrés at The Cove, Atlantis, but then again that takes into account the throw-away year that was 2020, and as restaurants slowly reopened in a pandemic environment. And then there’s the fact that Fish only reopened for dinner as of June … so I’m to be forgiven.

The upscale dining experience offers a scaled back version of menus past, with what I must say are interesting new additions intermingled with classic favorites.

Highlights of the new dinner menu include bay scallops with leche de tigre and Fresno chili; tuna nikkei from Hawaii with soy-cured egg yolk, ponzu, puffed quinoa, avocado, jicama, red onion, and furikake (Japanese condiment sprinkled on top of cooked rice, vegetables, and fish, or used as an ingredient in onigiri); fried fish sliders with island slaw and potato chips; seafood croquetas, béchamel fritters with Caribbean seafood; and halibut from Alaska grilled over a wood fire, black garlic mojo, pineapple and chayote.

I decided to explore all new items, while doing my best to keep my eyes trained away from my tried-and-true favorites.

I was drawn to the tuna nikkei as well as the hamachi tiradito with passion fruit, leche de tigre, avocado, pearl onion, corn and cilantro; just the thought of those flavors was intriguing.

Choices! Choices! Choices!

I decided on the tuna nikkei while indulging on José’s cheddar biscuits which are served out-of-the-oven warm and are great by themselves, but are amped up to star power level with a slather of their honey butter. And yes, I’m waxing poetic about biscuits. If you’ve had them you know what I’m talking about … if you haven’t – well, you’re missing out. These biscuits are so good you will be hooked. Take note, after the first round of these delightful two-biters (maybe three) mini biscuits, the second round is definitely on you.

My hubby who loves hamachi went with the hamachi tiradito, and my plan was to sneak a piece off his plate.

The tuna nikkei is visually stunning – chunks of the beautiful, mild tuna mingle with buttery avocado, dragon fruit, crunchy jicama and red onion, and crunchy, salty, crispy, furikake which also lends a yummy, nutty flavor to the dish; this is all nestled in a ponzu broth topped with a gorgeous soy-cured egg yolk. I almost didn’t want to destroy the dish, but it called to me. I stuck my fork in, broke the creamy egg yolk and swirled all that fatty goodness into the dish to pull the flavors together, for a lovely boost of umami. It was fresh and so flavorful that it blew my mind. This is one of those dishes that I have now added to my list of favorites, and will continue to have when I return to Fish and for as long as it is on the menu. Take note – it’s a generous portion.

I confess to stealing a bite of my hubby’s hamachi tiradito with passion fruit, leche de tigre (citrus-based, spicy marinade), avocado, pearl onion, corn and cilantro. Again, you can’t go wrong with this dish – beautiful hamachi nestled in a citrus sauce and topped with peppers that pack just enough of a punch in the heat department to make you take notice, is a beautiful pairing.

I kept my eyes trained away from the shrimp ‘n’ grits (one of those menu items that I have to have), and opted for the vermicelli mac ‘n’ cheese which can be had plain, or for extra indulgence with either jumbo lump crab meat or lobster. I went with the lobster, and it turned out to be cheesy goodness with a lashing of decadence with the addition of the lobster. It’s one of those must-have dishes. I held out on the shrimp ‘n’ grits, but all bets are off on my next visit.

Fish’s crab cake, which is chockful of crab with practically no fillers, which is a good thing, is paired with shaved Brussels and carrot slaw, and a tangy mustard seed dressing, that again is a delight.

Lobster bisque enhanced with crème fraîche, and butter croutons is a production, poured tableside.

The eight-ounce King Salmon is grilled over a wood fire and taken over the top with a deliciously floral, tropical flavored passion fruit brown butter (be still my beating heart) hearts of palm and avocado. I am a salmon snob, and it has to be cooked to a perfect medium temperature, or I will have a problem. It was, and the addition of the zingy, zippy passion fruit brown butter allowed this dish to practically sing, accompanied by creamy avocado and hearts of palm to round out the flavors. With a side of grilled mushrooms with tangy chimichurri sauce, this was one of those entrees that I again can have again.

Chantell Saunders restaurant manager suggested adding the grilled half lobster to the 14-ounce, 21-day aged ribeye for my meat-eating husband. She promised the steak and lobster would be cooked to perfection as she says they pride themselves on not overcooking their food. (There is practically nothing worse than an overcooked steak or lobster). She was able to stand by her promise. The steak was a beautiful medium-rare – rich, buttery, juicy and flavorful; while the lobster was tender, juicy, and melt in your mouth, owing to the fact that it too was cooked to the right temperature. The steak is served with twice backed potato and house-made steak sauce. With grilled baby carrots with roasted garlic yogurt and jerk seasoning, this was one of those meals for the ages.

In reopening, and with the new additions to its pared down menu, Fish by José Andrés is not to be missed.

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Shavaughn Moss

Shavaughn Moss joined The Nassau Guardian as a sports reporter in 1989. She was later promoted to sports editor. Shavaughn covered every major athletic championship from the CARIFTA to Central American and Caribbean Championships through to World Championships and Olympics. Shavaughn was appointed as the Lifestyles Editor a few years later.

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