Can the folks behind Rocco's Tacos do for seafood and rum what Rocco's did for tacos and tequila? We're about to find out with the debut of Reef Rd Rum Bar, which opened right across Clematis Street from the wildly popular nouveau taqueria.
Local moguls Big Time Restaurant Group, Rocco Mangel and nitespot hotshot Cleve Mash are all partners in the deal, taking over the old Clematis Social and turning it into a moderately priced seafood shack with a laid-back Key West-y vibe. It doesn't look a whole lot different than it did as Social. . . some different fabrics on the banquettes, bamboo screening behind the bar and on the ceiling, rough-cut wood paneling along one wall, columns concealed with tiki statues is about it.
The menus aren't reinventing the culinary wheel either.
Lunch is mostly salads and sammies, from grilled salmon Caesar to
SoFla's iconic fried grouper sandwich. Dinner rounds up all the usual
seafood suspects, with apps like smoked fish dip, coconut shrimp and
fried calamari, plus a trio of seafood platters, and long list of surf
'n' turf and crab-stuffed shrimp 'n' surf combos. For fishophobes
there's chicken, steaks, and mac 'n' cheese. Prices top out at $25.95
for filet mignon, but most seafood entrees are within a half-shell of
$20 and apps come in around $10.
Then there's the rum, more
than 100 different brands, and a long list of rum-based cocktails like
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the Bahama Mama--Oronoco rum (damn fine stuff, btw), Meyers Dark rum,
banana rum, coconut rum, pineapple juice, orange juice, and dashes of
grenadine and bitters. If that doesn't shiver your timbers, you rummy,
seek professional help.