It is a difficult time for most local restaurants. They face many new challenges including providing and diner experience that is unchanged from what their customers expected prior to the changes forced upon them by Covid regulations. Many local mom and pops have faced this challenge head on, and Duval Street in Cape Coral is no exception. Imagine opening in January 2020 and 3 months later being forced to close your dining room and pivot to take out only. Fast forward to August 2020 when some restrictions have eased but public perception keeps many diners home. They now have new challenges that they continue to face head on.
We were looking to try something different, so we ventured across the bridge to Duval Street in Cape Coral. They offer Key-West style food and beverages. What better way to take a break from strains and stress of life these days then to experience a little of Key West. They are located on Vincennes Blvd where parking is always an issue. This location has been many different restaurants that struggled to overcome this issue. Duval Street in Cape Coral has found a way to overcome this issue. Great food, drinks, and staff and a verandah with music and you have magic.
The cast for our experience consisted of Producer John Giaquinto, and Bar Director Todd. Staring in the role of server was Clayton (Clay), Food Runner Daniel and Table Busser Megan. Together they created an excellent experience. They all made us feel welcome and part of the family. They are friendly, respectful, and very helpful.
We started out with some Martinis (Chocolate $9.95 and White Chocolate Raspberry $12.95) and an order of (6) Conch Fritters with mustard dipping sauce ($8.95). These are the best conch fritters you will find anywhere. There was a lot of conch in them. You laugh but many have such small amounts and small in size that you would need a magnifying glass to see them. They were perfectly fried and so delicious that my dining partner who normally is not a fan, absolutely loved them.
For entrees we chose the Shrimp Scampi ($21.00) which comes with a house or Caesar salad, and the Gulf Jumbo Lump Crab Cakes with Key Lime butter sauce ($19.00). If you want your taste buds to do a happy dance, then these dishes are for you. The Scampi was perfect and the garlic omg!!! The shrimp were tasteful and cooked perfect. Did we mention the garlic? Perfecto!
I normally do not order crab cakes because they are more cake than crab and often the crab has no taste but today, I thought differently. It would be a test as to how good this restaurant was as we were told they make everything fresh in house. These crab cakes were off the chain good. Huge lumps of crab held together by just the right amount of “cake”. The lime butter sauce was refreshing and brought out the flavor of the crab. It was served with a house or Caesar salad, spaghetti squash/carrots/green beans and choice of Sweet Potato Fries, French Fries, Coleslaw, Rice, Baked Potato or Baked Sweet Potato. I chose the bakes potato. This dish is also perfecto!
For dessert we had the chocolate lava cake ($7.00). You could most definitely tell it is made in house. The cake was so light and fluffy, and the lava just oozed chocolatey goodness. It is served with 3 scoops of vanilla ice cream. We also had a cinnamon toast crunch shot to end a evening that was perfecto!
The only negative was that we would have to ask to have the finished plates removed from our table. When we mentioned it to John, he explained the new challenges restaurants face in these times. It is not the first time we have heard this from restaurant owners and managers.
Duval Street in Cape Coral is a great place to go when looking for a great dining experience with a Key West flare. Outside on the Verandah there was dining and live music to compliment the experience. If you have not been yet go, and if you have, them be sure to go back.
Overall Rating: Perfecto
Duval Street in Cape Coral
4721 Vincennes Blvd,
Cape Coral, FL 33904