Friday, September 3, 2010

Canyon Southwest Cafe: A dining abyss - Fort Lauderdale

Canyon Cafe
1818 E. Sunrise Blvd.
Fort Lauderdale 33304

This restaurant touts itself as an “oasis of inspired infusion.” It’s really an oasis of shameless elitism.

Yes, there are some interesting blends of Asian and American Southwest tastes - if one can find enough to load up a decent forkful. Portions are miniscule and not all good. I ordered shrimp - four for $28 served with rice and black beans - that were so tough I couldn’t cut them and gave up after struggling with two. The rice and beans were delicious but served in such a small amount it could be best described as a garnish. 

To add to the meal, I asked for a house salad. They don’t have one (too pedestrian?) so I chose a mixed hydroponic baby tomato (read: cherry tomato) salad for $12 with shaved midnight moon cheese that was either invisible or missing. The dressing, a spicy blend, was excellent.  Jalapeno smoked salmon on a tostado with goat cheese and scotch bonnet tartar sauce sounded intriguing but was difficult to eat. The final nail, a dessert of crème brulee on a tostada (not a good combination), came grainy and cold.

Their signature Canyon Prickly Pear Margarita tasted more like a sickly sweet and thick sour cherry syrup. We could barely get through two sips. To their credit and without our asking, they deducted the price of these drinks from our bill. Most entrees, which included seafood, chicken, pork and beef, were $28 with Florida Black Grouper going for $36, a little steep in these tough economic times, especially when portions are so small.

And finally, a glance at their Website underscores their elitism. A big “NO” is followed by NO reservations (no way, forget about it they say), NO recipes, NO happy hours, NO live music.This negative marketing sounds like a formula for NO CUSTOMERS.  They should get over themselves. Copyright © Jane Feehan. All rights reserved.

Tags: Fort Lauderdale dining, Fort Lauderdale restaurants, fine dining, South Florida restaurants, Canyon Cafe

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