Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Southwestern Sizzle

Agave Southwestern Grill in Naples, FL has done a little Spring Cleaning....both with the inside decor and the menu. I recently stopped in to sample some of the new fare and was so disappointed, disappointed that I didn't have room to eat more!!! We started with the table-side guacamole service, giving our input as to how much of each ingredient we wanted; so of course, it was made just right.

Agave not only serves the traditional corn tortilla chips with the guac but new flour tortilla crisps that not only hold up nicely to the thick dip, but also taste good on their own.

The ostrich appetizers is now served with a crispy yucca chicharron cake and guava-lime butter ($15); scrumptious. However, our favorite new appetizer has to be the ancho seared tuna in a chili lime vinaigrette, served with a jicama mango slaw ($14). It was light and fresh, with a bit of sweet and hint of heat; a nice balance. This can also be ordered as a main course.

The new crispy braised pork belly was one of our picks for a main course ($28). It was served with a yucca bacon hash that I could eat all day, every day. The Carolina slaw was a nice acidic accompaniment for that fatty meat that was perfectly crisp on the outside; just a tiny bit dry inside, but overall a great dish.

For sides, we tried the new sauteed spinach and roasted mushrooms, and southwestern fries, dusted with the chimmichurri rub. Neither was over-sized, both were deemed to be keepers.

Speaking of chimmichurri, I think my favorite entree of the night was the new chicken chimmichurri ($23). The grilled breast was served with a red chimmichurri rice and mushrooms in an adobo cream sauce. The chicken was juicy and the sauce was addicting. I was so glad there was some rice and mushrooms left over. It was fabulous with eggs for breakfast the next morning.

Of course one of the coolest things about Agave is the tequila selection, more than 200 choices. They offer flights of their specialty margaritas and flights of tequila; both vertical and horizontal. I picked the vertical flight of Don Julio; starting from the lower end blanco and graduating to the more complex extra anejo. If you are a tequila novice, the flights are a great way to get a better understanding and appreciation of this lively spirit.

Agave Southwestern Grill on Urbanspoon

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