Sunday, August 28, 2016

#ThankYouMiami for New Food Finds: Kona Grill

Many cafecitos ago we used to work in Doral. For lunch, the limited food options in the area meant daily $5 foot-longs from Subway—except on Fridays and other special occasions when we would treat ourselves to the Royal Thai lunch menu. (Dipping the complimentary spring roll into the sweet chili sauce was the highlight of our week.) The scarcity of acceptable food and beverage options was so severe our office would never do happy hour because we would have to drive too far to find anything worth our time. Seriously, that's how lame the Doral scene was back in those days.

These days high rents in Miami's urban core are driving drool-worthy restaurant concepts into suburban areas like Doral, giving the neighborhood a much overdue upgrade. Two weeks ago we decided to pay the area a visit to survey all the changes first hand. While we were there we stopped to check out Kona Grill at the Dolphin Mall because we'd heard a lot of great feedback from our friends and wanted to take advantage of their limited time summer menu. We were pleasantly surprised with our findings, particularly with the digs (they have a dope fish tank at the entrance!!), the stellar service, and the ample menu of Asian/American options. We were most surprised to find one of our old co-workers enjoying post-work drinks with his wife at the bar area—a testament to the fact that locals, whose choices we trust, actually frequent the spot. We're psyched our old co-workers finally have formidable options for lunch and post-work drinks/dinner (with happy hour bevs and bites for $3-$8.5).

The attentive and friendly staff were by far the highlight of our visit. While we're glad to see the migration of deliciousness from the metro areas to Doral, we're happy that our infamous subpar hospitality didn't tag along for the ride across the Dolphin. When it comes to the menu, we picked from both the regular and summer menus, sticking primarily to Japanese inspired dishes like the sushi rolls. The standouts were the picasso roll from the regular menu and the tuna mango roll from the summer menu. If you're looking for a cocktail, we recommend the Sun Kissed from the summer menu which has 1800 coconut tequila, Grand Marnier, coconut water, Monin agave nectar, and pineapple with a coconut rim. We were worried it was going to be too sweet, but it was just right.

Check out our photos from the night below, then stop by Kona Grill to taste all the goodness for yourself. The seasonal menu ends on Sunday, September 4 so you better move quickly!

Sun Kissed cocktail from the seasonal summer menu ending on September 4
Potstickers from the regular menu
Seven spice tuna over cucumber salad from the regular menu
Mango tuna sushi roll from the seasonal summer menu ending on September 4
Picasso sushi roll from the regular menu

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