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Getting Wowed by the Crow’s Nest Bar & Grille’s New Menu at ‘Tween Waters

I consider myself something of a shrimp-and-grits snob. I’ve eaten the iconic Southern dish from here to Charleston and New Orleans. My favorite used to be the Ya-Ya Grits at a restaurant in Pensacola. It’s been dethroned, however, by the Shrimp and Unbelievable Grits on the new menu at the Crow’s Nest Bar & Grille at ‘Tween Waters Inn Island Resort & Spa.

Believe the “unbelievable” part. Laced with roasted corn, poblano cheese, and chorizo, the grits languish in an insanely delicious smoked tomato sauce. They make the bed for meaty shrimp dusted with cornmeal and pan-fried. The crowning touch: slices of fried green tomatoes for a final Southern accent.

The shrimp-and-grits are but one indication that Chef Greg Nelson’s recently debuted menu says “wow.” We started with cocktails: I, a Murky Water (i.e. dirty martini with just the right touch of olive juice and two blue cheese-stuffed olives); my husband, one of four Florida craft beers listed.

We sampled quinoa salad and cracker-crusted crab cakes for starters. A white-peach vinaigrette adds subtle sweetness to the tri-color quinoa’s texture. Sandwiched between apple slaw and cayenne remoulade, the crab cakes burst with flavor and moistness.

Rob ordered coconut-crusted shrimp served po-boy style, the shrimp jumbo and juicy. Tasty and perfectly executed as it was, the side dish of red beans and dirty rice practically upstaged it. Over-sated, we passed on the dessert tray. We’ll return soon to try other selections on Chef Greg’s menu. Wow!

Crow’s Nest dessert tray at ‘Tween Waters Inn Resort & Spa
Shrimp and Unbelievable Grits at the Crow’s Nest Bar & Grille, ‘Tween Water Inn Resort & Spa

 

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Digging the New Vibe at The Crow’s Nest at ‘Tween Waters Inn Resort, Captiva Island

Nautically nice, the new decor at The Crow’s Nest speaks to Captiva Island’s salty character.

My husband and I have been partying at The Crow’s Nest Beach Bar & Grill at ‘Tween Waters Inn Island Resort far longer than I would like to admit. Before we had children. Before we were married, truth be told. It has always been a hot spot for late-night dancing to live bands around the fireplace. The nice thing? That hasn’t changed, even as we and our lives have.

It has, however, undergone a recent metamorphosis that continues to unfold with the brightness and drama of a butterfly. Gone is the 1980s look of dark wood and retro furnishings. Behold the lightness, the ropes, brass fixtures, and other nautical nuances. Now this looks like it belongs to Captiva Island! And to a new era.

Watch for more changes to come as the new executive chef, well-loved island kitchen wizard Greg Nelson, works his magic on the menu. “He’s a great person with great qualities,” says ‘Tween Waters Food & Beverage Manager Laurent Bosc. “Greg has top experience developing menus for beach themed restaurants. He is a leader because he’s a hands-on chef.”

Chef Greg will be overseeing menus and kitchen operations for all of ‘Tween Waters’ restaurants, including the Captiva House, Oasis pool bar, and the bar and grill that will open in May at the new adults Serenity Pool.

But for now, hubby and I are heading our fancy-free, empty-nester party-time back to where we once danced to Eagles and Van Halen covers. And still can at The Crow’s Nest.

Welcome to The Crow’s Nest new island personality.
Ropes, portholes, brass, and wood give The Crow’s Nest its salty air.
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