It was a Friday night date night with an excited table of foodies talking about their first visit to the Santa Fe College Kika Sylva Pla Planetarium for the Music 360 - Pink Floyd – Dark Side of the Moon light show. Naturally, Friday night happened to be a very busy time for the NorthWest Grille, so we experienced about a 20 minute wait for a table. That was OK because that meant even more time to discuss the variety of ocean specialties served by this NW 39th Ave. restaurant. It wasn't Christmas but I had visions of fried oysters and shrimp dancing in my head. No these prawns and bi-valves weren't anything like what I was about to see floating on the domed planetarium ceiling later that evening. However my brain was working overtime getting my palette ready for a seafood extravaganza. Imagine the GLOB Master's glee when our server placed a beautiful tray of fried seafood before me accented with vibrant green broccoli and some very yummy deep fried, crispy potato medallions. The deep fried goodness on my plate was so popular, my dinner mates eagerly accepted samples. The oysters were excellent -- just the right bite size-- and sported a light, golden brown crust. They were also my plate-winning ingredient. I grew up in Brevard County, and I am particular about what I would call "the perfect fried shrimp." The Grille prawns were very tasty and well cooked. My daddy raised me on fried seafood that was coated in water and egg, then dredged with cracker meal for a quintessential , thin, crispy, seafood crust. The Northwest Grill batter was a little thick for my liking. To me the breading created a slight conflict of flavors between the plump, juicy prawns and their cake like encasement. Nevertheless, this is a popular lunch stop for a reason GLOBers. The staff is friendly and quick to make you a happy customer, and the menu is very diverse, including non-seafood options as well. There is a link to the Northwest Grille below.
- Mike Sanford
Grouper sandwich is worth talking about
By Mike Sanford, GLOB Editor
Do you have one of those lunch spots hidden away in the back of your mind, off the regular lunch route, that surprises you in a "Wow, good idea" moment as soon as someone says the restaurant's name?
The other day someone in west Gainesville said, "Can you meet me at the Northwest Grille?"
My response was, "Why didn't I think of that?"
Northwest Grille is that kind of place for me. Located out NW 39th Ave next door to David's BBQ, I will need a special reason to be navigating that GLOB territory--reasons like grouper, grilled tuna and seafood platters. The Northwest Grille handles their fish entrees in a very special, tasty way.
Have you been to a seafood restaurant and heard the person at the next table say, "I come here to get the grouper"? This is one of those places.
The NG is a complete seafood restaurant. Fried, grilled, blackened, or broiled salt water delicacies can be found here plus many entrees created to spark images of the Atlantic ocean being just outside the door. Well, OK, actually a couple of hours east of the Northwest Grille door. Sorry, I got carried away.
Me personally, I enjoy a good fish filet. Grouper for example. A large piece of white meat cooked just right with just enough fish flavor to be accentuated by some fresh herbs, dill-flavored tartar sauce and a little lemon juice makes me a happy boy.
(Have you heard the Beat Farmers sing "I'm a Happy Boy"? That's a whole 'nother topic of conversation on what can create a happy feelling.)
Northwest Grille is a longtime, neighborhood kind of restaurant with a legion of faithful patrons. My suggestion is, if you are in a hurry, you might make plans to be there either at the beginning or at the end of the lunch hour. If you are not in a rush, this is a great establishment to kick back and carry on a good conversation with your lunch mates. Even though there are a lot of tables, I have never felt crowded or like I was invading someone else's space.
So, if the Northwest Grille is off your radar screen, my suggestion is to zero in on it for lunch plans the next time you are out on NW 39th Ave.
The Pluses and Minuses of the Northwest Grille:
Northwest Grille (+) indicators: Blackened grouper sandwich.
Northwest Grille (-) indicators: No minuses here.
Be the first to offer your GLOB comments, lunch photographs and opinions about the Northwest Grille. Please identify your opinions with a PLUS SIGN (+) for positive comments, and a MINUS SIGN (-) for your negative comments. - THANKS!
- Phone Number: 377-1365
- Address: 5115 Northwest 39th Ave., Gaineville, FL
- Urban GLOB Location: NW 39th Avenue
- Web Site: Northwest Grille
- Latitude: 29.68836
- Longitude: -82.397774
Celeste Thursday, 21 August 2014 10:24 Comment Link
Northwest grille has by far the most delicious fried oysters in Gainesville - the best I've had outside of Apalachicola! They also have a chicken dish called Chicken Caprini, chicken breast with creamy goat cheese on top. Amazing.
Angie Shepherd Keen Thursday, 21 August 2014 10:17 Comment Link
Now here you go again, GLOB MASTER, making me hungry!!! I haven't had a Grouper sandwich from NW Grill, but I have had some of the best fried fish and grits and many other excellent seafood creations there. Now, I'm craving that yummy lookin Grouper sandwich you showed us ;).
Thanks...., and I'm off!!
Angie Shepherd Keen
Joe Rojo Friday, 28 October 2011 17:44 Comment Link
Chef Fennell knows how to cook seafood. In my opinion, this is the best seafood restaurant in Gainesville. The menu has many delicious treats for non-fish eaters, as well.
alan Wednesday, 29 June 2011 10:59 Comment Link
Best bar tender in town in Jeremy. Great food and staff is always friendly and helpful. Local restaurant that cares about food and service.
Jon Rose Friday, 29 October 2010 12:13 Comment Link
It is nice to have a truly local seafood restaurant instead of hitting one of the chains. Great service, friendly. Best fried shrimp in town!