Don’t let the garish yellow paint on the front exterior dissuade you from pulling into the small parking lot where the Dockside shares space with other small businesses. Go in the door and you’re ushered to the back deck where almost all the tables are. There’s a constant breeze and you’re under a roof, overlooking a lovely lagoon (see photo, not great but it does show the view you’ll enjoy).
If you’re looking for elegance in the furniture or decor, look elsewhere. But if you want savory food presented very well, with layers of flavor, as well as ample portions and freshness, then grab a seat. There aren’t many!
Our party of three enjoyed the Alaskan King Crab, the Grouper with Dinner Salad (see photo), and the Steamed Clams (see photo) with sides of garden salad and Sweet (Potato) Fries. And drinks we enjoyed included a Martini Bomb Sapphire with no vermouth, and an Awesome Blossom martini, and Stella Artois beer. We kept marveling at how good everything was.
The clams came with two hunks of crusty buttered bread whose purpose was to soak up the lovely broth but they weren’t enough as there was more broth than bread!
Small quibbles: The small staff meant slow service at times. This is not the place to eat and run. We asked for a spoon for the extra broth but it never came. We needed a couple more items and had to ask the busboy who was running by. But their cheerfulness helped cancel those things out.
Florida law allows smoking "outside". That means -- yes -- you can smoke at your table, something I find completely revolting. It meant that I became a smoke magnet. But that’s not the restaurant’s fault, although I would hope they’d see the problem with strong cigarette smoke diminishing the wonderful flavors of the food and despite the law, ask diners to not smoke.
We all opted to not have dessert -- too full! -- but some of our party enjoyed espresso.
The ladies room is quirky and colorful.
We happened to meet the one and only chef as we left and commended him for his excellent work.
We wish much success to this little yet wonderful place, and hope they don’t burn out given that they are trying to do it all with very few people. We’ll be back to see!
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