I’ve been a fan of Vin’tij since it opened more than 20 years ago in Miramar Beach. In case you haven’t been for a while, they’ve moved from their more modest location in the Silver Sands area, and are now a part of the Grand Boulevard universe.
The restaurant sits on a corner, opposite a movie theatre and surrounded by upscale shops and dining establishments. Inside is spacious, an L-shaped dining area/wine shop, shelves of bottles and accessories, a large main dining room, back dining room, and outdoor tables and chairs for warm weather—which we did not have that day.
The decor is sleek but inviting, with polished wood, dark blue and silver to complement the gleaming rows of glasses, buckets and wine bottles. There’s a long wine bar with stools, and plenty of view.
We got a seat along the wall. Our server (Jenelle) gave us menus and water. After reciting the evening’s specials, she left us to decide while she brought hot bread and olive oil.
You’ll be asked if you want pepper flakes in your olive oil, but my advice is to pass and just enjoy the oil as is—it’s that good, and the bread (almost too hot to handle) just needs a thorough dip to make it perfect.
The dinner menu lists starters (including soup and salad), main courses, sides, kids plates and desserts. The wine list offers wines by the glass (3 ounce, 6 ounce, and full bottle sizes) and wines from the tap. There’s also beer, soft drinks, and house specialties like sangria and sake cocktails.
My wife needs to avoid dairy, which necessitated inquiry into the ingredients of some dishes. Jenelle was very helpful, and we were able to navigate the menu successfully.
We started with the Vin’tij charcuterie board. It’s market priced, and turned out to be $32. That said, it’s plenty for three, and could even serve four as a snack. The board is covered with a colorful and enticing selection of tidbits, including sliced smoked duck, house made pork and chicken sausages, lemon Stilton, Port Salut, crumbly blueberry cheese, mini quiches, pickled fruits and vegetables, seasoned nuts, spicy salami, and toasted bread. There are many textures, colors and flavors – creamy, crunchy, chewy, sweet, tart, savory, salty and smoky.
Other starters include soup of the day, basket of assorted breads, Caesar salad, raspberry port wine salad, seasonal seafood cakes, oyster crostini, fried calamari, and a short rib poutine with fries, meat, gravy and white cheddar.
For the entree, I chose a daily special—lamb chops with applewood bacon and scallion potato cake, blueberry gastrique and asparagus. My wife ordered a Worcestershire steak, a 14-ounce ribeye, which she got with roasted potatoes (substituted for the smashed potatoes, which contained dairy) and collards. Our daughter Grace ordered a burger and fries.
We weren’t drinking wine that night, but I noticed the server at an adjoining table being very helpful on wine-pairing suggestions. It’s nice to know the house wants to make you happy.
Our food arrived, both lamb and beef cooked as ordered. My chops were dense and rich, and I gnawed the little ribs without hesitation. The potato cake was loaded with creamy potatoes and smoked bacon, and the tart gastrique countered the richness.
My wife’s ribeye was cooked with a house made Worcestershire sauce, tangy and assertive, just right for the earthy cut of beef. She’s ordinarily not a fan of collards, but finished every bite.
Other main courses include a daily fish, cumin seared tuna, pan seared salmon, pecan chicken, shrimp and grits, shrimp and scallop linguini, and a vegan lucky bowl—roasted cauliflower, potatoes, mushrooms, garlic green beans, blistered tomatoes, peppers, and arugula and garlic chips over stir fried quinoa rice.
There’s a dessert list, plus specials. That night they had warm griddled lemon pound cake, pecan pie, cheesecake, flourless chocolate cake, house made ice cream, and a strawberry fried pie. My wife opted out, so my daughter and I ordered the pie. I can’t pass up fruit pie, it’s that simple.
There was plenty for two, dusted with powdered sugar, in a berry coulis, with a chocolate ganache truffle and whipped cream as garnish. It’s crunchy, sweet and tangy, loaded with fresh chopped berries in a light glaze.
We packed up Grace’s leftovers and half of my wife’s steak, plus the uneaten bread. Jenelle even sent home a little cup of the olive oil so the bread wouldn’t be lonely.
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