Todd English's bluezoo, Walt Disney World

Christey and I don't do many restaurant reviews. I would rather get inspired by what professionals do with their food without having to put my mind in nitpick mode, and Christey goes completely bonkers trying to shoot mouth-watering cuisine in low-light conditions. So, this won't really be a review as much of a recap. Which is a good thing, as I don't think I can be objective about this place -- it's one of our very favorites. It was my birthday this weekend (41), and Christey and I tried our best to eat our way around Disney World. WDW is an hour from our home, and we are season pass holders, so we go to Disney a lot, sometimes just to eat. It's not hard to find good food there, Disney has a lot of muscle to get really good food suppliers, and last I heard, there were 99 restaurants, from a shack in Frontierland selling McDonalds fries up to the almost black-tie Victoria and Alberts in the Grand Floridian. Christey and I have our favorites: Jiko at the African Lodge, Bistro De Paris in Epcot France, Artists Point in the Fort Wilderness Lodge, and bluezoo in the Dolphin resort hotel. We try to rotate.

I think this was our fourth time to bluezoo. It's a seafood place (the original "blue zoo" being the sea, of course), with beautiful blown glass "bubbles" hanging from the ceiling in spirals.

We started with drinks, a dry Chopin martini for me, an Absolut Manderin cosmopolitan for Christey:

One of the things I love about bluezoo is the selection of seafood. There are tropical fish like mahi, but Todd English's main restaurant empire is in Boston, so there is an emphasis on northern, colder water seafood that is hard to find in Florida. Especially oysters. We get plenty of Apalachicola oysters, and some from Louisiana and Texas, but I just go nuts for the briny crispness of northern oysters. Last night, they had two types from the Pacific northwest, and three types from the northern Atlantic: Rhode Island, Maine, and Prince Edward Island. So, I had to order two from each.

Christey ordered the classic "Olives" flatbread, basically a pizza margherita in almost a Naples style

I had a couple pieces of hers, and Christey actually had one of my oysters -- a first for her!

As we were devouring our appetizers, we noticed a table was served with what we thought were some sort of food shooters. We stopped the Assistant Manager to ask what they were, and he ended up bringing a couple by later in our dinner. What we thought was the shooter was actually a lucite base, with a horizontal tube along the top. Contained in the tube was a deconstructed shrimp cocktail -- shrimp, cucumber, a bloody mary/cocktail sauce, and a couple other ingredients I missed (celery leaf, I think, and a particular foam). Instead of tipping it back like a shooter, it was almost inhaled through the "straw". Very cool, and very innovative -- not only deconstructing the meal, but also playing with the delivery method.

For the main, Christey had mahi mahi done "simply fish" style, grilled, with a crabmeat, chive, and dijon sauce. I had the "dancing fish", a striped seabass spitted and roasted, with a garlic rub. Both were really fabulous. The dancing fish is served whole: skin, bones, head, and tail, and I happily worked my way down to picking the meat off the bones.

Some restaurants at Disney, even with the pull of the mighty Disney supply chain, have been hit or miss with us, either excellent one time, or pretty lousy the next (Fulton's Crab House in Downtown Disney is a good example). We haven't had a bad meal, or even a bad course, at bluezoo yet.

Which is a good thing, as FoodBuzz is sponsoring a Florida Foodies gathering there in two weeks were over 30 food bloggers based in Florida will meet each other for the first time. It's going to be a lot of fun!

Gnocchi Parisienne with Vegetables

Gnocchi Parisienne with Vegetables

Hot and Sour Soup with Bread Bowl