PinkSandBermuda | By Clifton Webb  – Clifton is a Marketing Professional by day, a Social Media enthusiast most of the time and a lover of food all the time.  Follow him and see what he shares on Twitter @CliftonW21 and Instagram @clwebb21

 

Working near the western end of town makes me no stranger to Muse Restaurant and Skybar, and for this I am beyond lucky. Muse sits in a location that is just off the beaten path, so it is somewhat of a best kept secret….and honestly I like it like that but, I cannot sit quietly and keep this gem of a restaurant from the uninitiated after my Restaurant Weeks 2015 meal.I went to Muse as a bit of a Restaurant Week tradition – without even seeing the menu – and also because I know Chef Enworth does not disappoint. With the options of the second floor dining area, the newly renovated porch with glass rails and the lower level with a clear view of the open kitchen, we opted to eat at the bar on the ground floor. A personal favourite, as it gives clear shot to watch the chefs create our soon to be had delights.

 

This year Restaurant Weeks are a bit of a competition. Safe to say the bar was set high at Muse.

 

Kicking off the meal with course one

Caramelized Bermuda Onion & Smoked Gouda Ravioli (Enhanced with Spanish Sauce)

My eyes started dancing as this pasta pillow was placed in front of me, as it was already a feast for the eyes. Biting into this ravioli, it has a bit of snap….a firmness that provides the first hint that this is a substantial first course (despite it being only one ravioli). In contrast to the firm pasta, the soft peppers encased in the sauce has an interesting ‘mouthfeel’ to it.

 

Then came the taste…Perfection. The slightly tart twang of the sauce stands up perfectly to the smokiness of the Gouda, which danced with the sweetness of the onions. The best was when I passed my fork through the sauce and captured a bit of the stuffing in the pasta, getting every element of this dish. The only thing I could say is bad about this appetizer is the fact that ther’s only one and I just want MORE.

 

The Bermuda inspiration of this dish is in the sauce and the onions. The tomato-based sauce is reminiscent of ‘red sauce’ you get with codfish breakfast. It has a similar taste to that time you made the best ‘red sauce’ in your life. This complete with the caramelized Bermuda onions is simply a reminder of the lengths, components of our blessed Bermuda breakfast can be taken to.

 

Plenty of oohs and ahhs later, and on to course 2

Bailey Bay Mussel Chowder En Croute

en croute (pronounced “on KROOT”) indicates a food that has been wrapped in pastry dough and then baked in the oven.

 

The menu says Chowder, but what I got was this cup with this huge pastry dome. Interesting at first glance…one could even say intimidating. So much so, that the question from the right was, “how do you eat this?” But with the slightest touch this flaky, layered, puff pastry gives in to the spoon and the aroma of the piping hot seafood goodness escapes. Inside you see what looks like a creamy soup with bits of mussels and an assortment of colours.

 

Oh My…

Breaking off the pastry and letting it drop in the soup….before you’ve tasted a bite….three senses; sight, touch and smell have already been piqued. The last two senses came into play after my first spoonful: tasting this silky (not creamy….I said silky) broth with the combination of mussels along with root vegetables and hearing the approving moans from my dining counterparts. Instinctively I started eating slowly because I didn’t want this experience to end. Ravioli are still in the back of my mind but now I just want a BIG BOWL of this soup. For all my seafood lovers, this soup is the ultimate reminder of the reason we love seafood in the first place.

 

The Bermudian influence for me comes from a time when fresh Bermuda mussels were on sale (Down Bailey’s Bay as a matter of fact)….my granny used to buy them in little plastic bags or jars and on my best behaved days I got some.

 

THE MAIN

Snapper cooked on a Cedar Plank

Accompanying the snapper is Sautéed Vegetables, Fried Plantain, Hoppin John and a Lemon Caper Sauce over the fish. After the first two courses I was already on the verge of sensory overload then came this…. The description of this is so simple, but it more than satisfies. The fish seasoned and cooked to perfection. The taste and the texture would convert a non-fish eater. The Hoppin John…. Safe to say, you could go to every campsite and picnic table in sight at Clearwater Beach on a Summer Sunday and not find a better plate of Peas and Rice.

 

The Bermudian Influence….snapper…cedar…peas and rice…need I say more?

 

I was ‘Food Dumb’ by now so I just let Chef Enworth choose dessert for me.

Loquat and Peach Tart with Vanilla Ice Cream

Excellent choice Chef! Not being one for ultra sweet desserts this hit the mark. Baked, warm fruit with an accompanying sweet sauce. In short, this was a delectable dessert that did not disappoint. Sweet baked peaches with tart loquat flavor, hints of cinnamon, a fresh strawberry and (what I think was) a blackberry inside a loquat. (I get berries mixed up…so sorry)

 

Perspective: Normally, I don’t eat desserts or ice cream……I ate ALL of my dessert and the ice cream.

 

The Bermuda Inspiration – Loquats

 

Beyond the tastes that were mind numbingly stimulating and had me dropping my fork, oohing and ahhing and eyes rolling up in my head, what made this dinner was the thought that was put into it. When the term Bermuda inspired is thrown out, the thought leads to the go-to restaurant favourites; fish chowder, wahoo, rockfish, black rum cake, etc. (don’t get me wrong I LOVE all these items too) But in my opinion, Chef Enworth has taken Bermuda foods, traditions, and experiences and communicated those into a brilliantly executed meal.

 

I can’t wait for my next Restaurant Weeks experience and I cannot promise that I won’t go back to Muse again….this time to get the chicken ☺