MesaMar: The finer side to seafood
If you’re wondering where to go for an anniversary, birthday, business meeting, a first date (if you’re really trying to impress), or maybe a delicious cocktail before heading somewhere else, MesaMar is the place for you. Opening a mere couple months ago, it has set fire to the seafood scene in Coral Gables. Being a frequent customer to Fifi’s Place which serves some of the best seafood on Miami Beach, I could only expect great things from another restaurant of hers. Although conceptually different, the seafood remains, but with a latin and asian flare.
Sounds skeptical I know, but it works. Im going to say now that this place is not the cheapest, nor does it have the biggest portions. Its one of those “you get the taste of a giant dish in one bite” type of restaurant, which some people can appreciate.
The restaurant itself is beautifully decorated in an “under the sea” type of decor and even has the fish of the day placed in an ice case along one of the walls. Im not sure how you feel about staring into the eyes your dinner but it really does add to the freshness appeal of the restaurant. I think one of the best aspects of the restaurant is the bar (I’ll probably say that about every restaurant). The glasses line the ceiling, and the drinks are incredibly delicious. Don’t expect a simple mixture of the common juices found in your supermarket because you’ll be trying things you never knew existed. I think its well worth the visit just to sit at the bar for a couple drinks.
We tried many of their dishes and, while it was difficult, decided a few to be “must orders”. Firstly, it is imperative that you try the Gorgonzola and Pear Ravioli. Unlike other pretentious restaurants, they don’t have to include “truffle oil” in the title for everyone to order it. The truffle isn’t overdone either, which is something most restaurants always do. Another must order is the sweet miso black cod, which is an example of their asian flare. Sorry I don’t have a picture of it, I ate it faster than my partner could turn the camera on. On the healthier side, start with the sashimi that they top with garlic chips, dry miso and a delicious ponzu sauce. Just as yummy and a little more guilt-free. For the sharing type, make your entree the catch of the day, fried and filleted. For our hog fish, they did both on either side of the meatless hog fish bone- the presentation was great.
If you’re an after dinner drink person, ask the bartender for the Sambuca with a coffee bean and set on fire. It makes the perfect ending to a date (that did or didn’t go well), a business meeting, and definitely a birthday dinner.