I was recently invited to the BRIO Tuscan Grille to try out their seasonal Seafood Celebration. We love the Polaris area and BRIO is right in the center of the mall with an easy to access outside entrance. While our visit was in early April we wore winter jackets and walked right by the cold, lonely patio furniture.
We were greeted with fresh bread and softened butter. Since I grew up on a dairy farm I can recognize good butter. While the butter was very good, the artisanal blackberry cocktails were WONDERFUL! I got the Blackberry Infused Cosmo ($8) and my husband got the Blackberry Cooler ($9). We enjoyed every last drop!
Shortly a Calamari Fritto Misto ($11.25) with a mustard aioli (cream colored sauce) and pomodoro (red sauce) was delivered. I expected to prefer the red sauce, but the smooth, gentle flavor of the aioli paired wonderfully with the calamari. The manager shared that they have recently changed their calamari to a steak like this, as opposed to the traditional rings. The dish is very good!
We were very pleased to be surprised with the assorted flatbread appetizer. We both agreed that the seasonal flatbread in the center of the board is our favorite. It has provolone cheese, Pinot noir caramelized onions, prosciutto and asparagus. At the top of the board is toasted red pepper with fresh mozzarella, balsamic glaze with basil and grated parmesan cheese. At the bottom of the board is sliced steak with fresh mozzarella, tomato compote, arugula and parmesan cheese. This appetizer showcased a variety of flavors and could have easily served as a meal!
And then the celebration began with a WOW as they set these three beautiful plates before us. We both speculated that the pasta might be our favorite, but we changed our minds after some thorough sampling.
I’ll begin with my favorite dish, the Grilled Salmon Fresca ($20.95) was a wonderful dish with salmon, grilled asparagus, sweet potatoes, spinach, red peppers, pesto vinaigrette, Feta, tomatoes and a balsamic drizzle that marries the flavors quite well! I really enjoy grilled items, especially this time of year when we’re anxious to use our own grill more often.
My husband’s favorite dish is the Shrimp Mediterranean ($17.50) which is orzo, farro, broccoli, asparagus, tomatoes, spinach, Feta and pesto vinaigrette topped with spicy grilled shrimp. The shrimp were large and succulent and definitely the star of the show with this dish!
We both expected to favor the Lobster & Shrimp Ravioli ($22.95) which was served with spicy black pepper cream, spinach and grape tomatoes. The dish is wonderful, but it did not stand out like the other two dishes did for us.
At this point in the meal we were fully satisfied when our server and the manager each carried these delightful offerings out of the kitchen!
We felt obligated to sample every dish, and we weren’t surprised that each dessert was excellent! We sampled the Grande (full-size) Warm Chocolate Cake ($7.25), as well as the Dolchinos (petite favorites) Cheesecake ($4.25), Creme Brulee ($4.25), and Key Lime Dessert ($4.25). The chocolate cake had a perfect fudgy center and was our favorite!
Why Should You Go? Every item we served was comprised of high quality food and flavors. We would highly recommend the Brio Tuscan Grille and we will certainly return!