If you're going to open and operate yet another micro-brew/pub/eatery it is essential, one would think, that the first order of business would be to be or hire or partner with a master brewer. As with their distant cousin the vintner, it is preeminent they are educated, creative and persnickety when it comes to ingredients. However, it is just as vital to the success of the aforementioned saloon to have a chef equal with that of the brew-master At least, here at BBDO, we think that should be the case. With all of this in mind, I headed towards Indian Harbour Beach to appraise the offerings of food and beer (these are a few of my favorite things...) Beachfly Brewing Company had to offer the general beer lapping casual omnivorous dining public on the Space Coast.
Location, in the Big Boy's estimation, as has been said ad nauseum, bears little or no bearing on the success or failure of a restaurant (if the food rocks, they will come), on the other hand, I feel providing ample parking for patrons does factor in. If people drive around for 15 minutes trying to find a spot, those with little or no patience just might decide to dine elsewhere that day. Thankfully, the Big Boy is always looking out for those spending hard earned cash on dining out and patiently awaited an open spot.
As with every other Micro-Brew/Canteen, the brewing vats were central and certainly grabbed your attention upon entering. That didn't impress me so much as validate what kind of place I was in, the extremely clever display of their beers did impress me. It was engaging and with all that beer within site, how could one not feel an inner sense of joy? I mean, we are talking beer here. As soon as I was able to once again focus on the task at hand, I tried to take a seat at the bar. I was seated at a table and began to zealously read the proferred menu. Trying not to concentrate solely on the potables, I also took a passing glance at the food items. It seemed to be your standard Pub-type offering with hipster influences including the ever-popular rice bowl. A humanoid was seen leisurely approaching our table and when he finally got there, introduced himself as Julian and asked if we were ready to order or had any questions regarding the menu or types of beer on hand that day. While I found Julian to be competent in carrying out his job duties, his pace was rather languid in its execution.
The first beer to be sampled was the Space Kolsch which is in the style of a crisp German ale. I found this beer to be delightful and came completely as advertised -- 4 Stars. Next to soothe my parched throat was I(hb)PA. Not only is the name creative, but I found the barley pop to be as well. With the combined pine/citrus thing it has going on, I found this to be complex and delicious and with a 3.5 Star rating, my second favorite of those sampled. Moving on to the Purple Porpoise Pale Ale. This was not as good as the SK, but it wasn't awful either and I found it to be an average example of an American Pale Ale -- 3 Stars. Continuing my journey I reached for the Turtle Trax Wheat which offered citrus notes to the aroma and taste, however, I found it not as good as the previous samples and so give it a 2 Star rating. Finally, I arrived at the final liquid bread on my flight, their Canova Sunrise Ale. While this did come as advertised and had a lovely red hue to it, I think in trying to make it less bitter they did something too much or incorrect and ended up not only brewing the bitterness out but most of the taste as well. I was taken aback as I have never experienced tasteless beer before, but here it was-- 1 Star. In short, this sampling would be more aptly named the wheel of average beer as opposed to a beer flight.
With the exploration of libations out of the way, it was time to turn the Big Boy loose on the food. The Tropical Pork Rice Bowl could be humorously called the Tropical Surf and Turf Rice bowl as it came with some prawns as well as the advertised pork. The shrimp seemed to be low end or perhaps frozen too long as it had the texture of shrimp that is low end or had been freezer burned before cooking. It was slightly tough to chew and lacked any and all taste. the beans were cooked to perfection and I did find the cilantro cream to be interesting on the palate, but overall I found this offering to be on par with the last beer sampled.
The Fish Tacos had huge chunks of real, honest to Babe Winkelman Grouper that was cooked properly (fish should flake apart with a fork) however what it had in preparedness it completely lacked in flavoring as it had zero, zilch, nada seasoning and the cabbage stuffed inside the toasted tortilla was from the crown, therefore, it was not rich in color nor flavor.
The Big Boy says, "There are worse places to eat and drink, or drink and eat as the case may be, but there are certainly better ones than my experience at Beachfly Brewing Company.