Aqua Grill

Enter Aq
395 Front St
Ponte Vedra Beach, FL 32082
About once a  month a few of my women friends, get together for a girls night out which equates to happy hour cocktails, and dinner; normally a fine dining event, tonight that brought us to Aqua Grill.  It has been remodeled since my last visit and the results are quite elaborate.  Dark wood, sparkling glass with upscale lighting, a waterfall wall, space by the open kitchen for a private table and a much improved patio offering a romantic ambiance. 
Comfortable and elegant seating
Our seats on the Patio

Our seats on the Patio

Fire Pit on the Patio

Fire Pit on the Patio

Private seating

Private seating

 It started off well, service was efficient, friendly and attentive, but it became clear they are still in bar and kitchen transition.  There were no cocktail menus available and we were told that the on-line menu was not available. Our server did name some of the drinks she could recall, one being a Blood Orange Martini, which appealed to three of us.  A few minutes later we were told that drink was not available.  Okay let’s move on.  We started with a few appetizers, here they fared.
Seafood Chowder, creamy, rich and packed full of treasures according to its owner.
Sea Food chowder

Sea Food chowder

 Some Panko Crusted Green Tomatoes and a Mozzarella and Marinara concoction  as well as some great looking Meatballs made an appearance on our table.
Panco crusted Green Tomatoes

Panko crusted Green Tomatoes

 Thinly sliced, a bit on the bitter side, nothing to rave about, the Meatballs fared much better, these were delicious, juicy  well seasoned in a flavorful sweet sauce.
Meat Balls

Meat Balls

The cheese and sauce dish was also a winner, well received but all.
Mozzrella and Marinara

Mozzarella and Marinara

One item we all agreed on was the bread,  unusual and welcomed two ample servings of Sweet Potato bread.  Warm enough on the inside to melt the butter, it was a flavor I had not experienced in the past.  We finished this off waiting for our starters.

Sweet Potato Bread

 Here are our thoughts on the other dishes:
Boneless Short Ribs, voted good, but not notable.  Vegetables were well flavored and not over cooked, onion ring a bit greasy. 
Bonless Short Ribs

Boneless Short Ribs

 The long time menu offering, Crispy Fried Platter, fresh fish, clam strips, lump crab and lobster cake, jumbo shrimp, fries and coleslaw, looked well over cooked and dry.  According to the person who ordered this the big let down was the crab and lobster cake.  She felt it was more filler than  fish,  for the 27.00 $ cost portions were stingy.

Sea Food platter

Sea Food platter

 I almost ordered this dish until I heard the ingredients;  Wasabi Pea Crusted Ahi Tuna with Chinatown vegetable lo-mein, kung pao soy wasabi aioli and lobster spring roll. It arrived looking like something that came from a fast food take out shop. For the price a little staging would have gone a long way to make this dish more appealing.

Wasabi Tuna w noodles and spring roll

Wasabi Tuna w noodles and lobster spring roll

 My dish Oven Roasted Atlantic Salmon with arugula pesto – yellow pepper & heirloom tomato toasted orzo salad, crispy caper berries; well over cooked and with a whopping dollop of pesto atop the fish.  As strong flavor as Salmon has, which I want to taste, the pesto overtook any hint of salmon. The pesto was immediately removed from the fish, but it was too late!  I had also ordered a side of sautéed Spinach that never appeared.  Probably a good thing.
Atlantic Salmon w Pesto

Atlantic Salmon w Pesto

 We all passed on dessert.  
So our thoughts, two of us can walk to this spot that makes it inviting. the other three of us probably would not return any time soon.  My personal thoughts, if I am going to drive the distance my choice would be Restaurant Medure.  I have no problem paying upscale prices, but I want the food to reflect what I am paying for, Aqua Grill did not do that for me.  So go for happy hour, the interior is well worth the trip, get patio seating,  have a few appetizers and give it a test run.  Don’t forget to bring good friends oh and leave the the little ones at home.

Aqua Grill Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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