I was recently invited to a tasting of Tommy Bahama’s new menu items and as always, I am always excited because I absolutely adore Chef Jacqueline Nabong. Her dishes are always fresh, light and flavorful, drawing upon her Hawaiian heritage and staying true to the island-feel of Tommy Bahama’s care-free image.
Our dinner was served in the private dining room, and as usual, I took tons of photos, but when I went to download them, something was wrong and I ended up losing all the photos I took. So, the photos I’m using is a compilation of ones I’ve found courtesy of Tommy Bahama.
We started with Peri Peri Dusted Seared Sea Scallop, a succulent scallop sitting in a citrus ponzu with just enough tartness to whet your appetite. Kumquat slices served both as garnish and a hint of freshness.
A soup of Heirloom Tomato, served with burrata bruschetta was very enjoyable. I love tomato soup and all the produce procured by the restaurant is from Future Foods Farm — a farm specializing in the hydroponic way of farming.
I always love the use of fresh sashimi-grade fish in dishes so Hamachi & Grapefruit did not disappoint. Mache, crushed red pepper, strawberry and a yuzu-soy accompanied.
The combination of kale, edamame, hearts of palm, beech mushrooms, roasted corn, pine nuts might sound like a lot, but together, the acroutrements for this lemongrass encrusted ahi tuna drizzled with tahini-miso vinaigrette was so mouth-puckering good.
A palate cleanser of Spiced Salted Grapefruit did its job perfectly in preparation for the entrees to come.
Seafood lovers will enjoy Hot Iron Swordfish & Barbequed Tiger Shrimp served with a delicious charred corn succotash, spinach, local herb quinoa,in a lemon beurre blanc sauce. The succotash consisted of Israeli cous cous which I absolutely LOVE!
For carnivores, Rock Salt Grilled Meyer Flat Iron Steak is the way to go. The white bean puree is so delectable I wanted more, and the use of shimeiji mushrooms is in perfect harmony with the Asian influences that is the restaurant’s appeal. The steak is drizzled with a root beer reduction, giving the rich sauce a touch of sweetness to lift the palate.
I’m not a huge fan of dessert and while I enjoyed the Tommy Bahama signature pineapple shaped cookie, I only took a sample of the Malted Pie, Pina Colada Cake, Butterscotch. The pina colada cake surprised me because I don’t usually like coconut, but using toasted coconut here really changed the entire feel of the cake.
I’m never disappointed when I visit Tommy Bahama’s and I am confident, neither will you. Two lucky winners will be selected to win a $50 giftcard courtesy of Tommy Bahama’s. Leave me a comment with your FULL NAME telling me if you’ve been to the restaurant before, if so, your memories, and if not, what you are most excited about trying. Entries close on Sunday, June 10th.
Tommy Bahama’s Bar & Grille
854 Avocado Ave
Newport Beach, CA 92660