During this global pandemic we are unable to go to restaurants and cafés and sit and enjoy the atmosphere, get served. We don't even think of fine dining, it seems.
Our only alternative is to have food delivered or, we can go and pick up for what is commonly known as takeout. On this particular day, I decided to jump on my bike and go over to A Fish called Avalon on Ocean Drive.
I've had a sit-down dinner in the restaurant and know it to be an excellent restaurant from my past experiences, so I thought rather than the usual take out, it would be nice to have more of a dining experience at home.
Avalon's take out service is pleasant, with a table in front of the restaurant on Ocean Drive. The 1955 Oldsmobile convertible parked just steps away is one of the most-photographed cars in America.
When I arrived I was greeted by a cheerful employee who was standing behind the table where he was also taking people's orders, then would dash back into the restaurant to bring out bags and bags of just-prepared food from the kitchen.
Since I was going to re-create the dining experience at home, I ordered crab cakes as an appetizer, a Caesar salad and seafood paella as my main dish.
My dessert was the award winning Key lime pie, a must have when you dine at A Fish Called Avalon. Taking the bike was a good idea on many levels, but I did have to take it a little slower on the ride back since I was saddled down with two big shopping bags full of my food for the evening.
I returned home where I had set up the table to make it feel like a fine dining experience.
I decided to save the crab cakes and started with the Caesar salad. The lettuce was crisp and a homemade dressing was delicious.
Next, I dived into the Jump Lump crab cakes with the outer crust giving way to the tender jumbo lump crab inside. Another of Avalon's homemade sauces, this one had a nice, spicy kick.
Now time for the main course: The Orzo Paella with shrimp, sea scallops, saffron roasted tomato broth and baby spinach. Not your typical paella (usually rice, but Avalon makes theirs signature with orzo). The course was big, enough to have leftovers, and definitely a delicious mixture of flavors.
Was I ready for dessert? Did I still have room?
I took a breather, sipped some Perrier and then was ready for this award winner.
There's so much that's perfect about Avalon's Pecan Crusted Key Lime pie; no wonder it took first place in Orlando and beat out more hundreds of competitors to be the Best Key Lime Pie 2019 National Pie Grand Champ awarded from the American Pie Council.
The secret here is in the crust. The usual key lime pie is made with graham crackers, but what hits the sweet spot with this dessert is the pecan crust, rich and buttery, which brings out the cool flavor of the key lime.
There it was. A delicious gourmet meal in a time of quick take out.
In this state of the pandemic, treat yourself and celebrate. It will make you appreciate what we have in life and be grateful. I enjoyed having the Avalon experience at home, but what I most look forward to is going out again to their exquisite dining room, sitting down, enjoying their great food and service along with their beautiful ambiance.
It will still be divine even in the new normal.
- 700 Ocean Dr, Miami Beach, FL 33139.
- Check out the menu: afishcalledavalon.com
- Phone: (305) 532-1727