Friday, July 25, 2008

Cinebistro: It's Shiny! It's Pricey!

Checked out the new Cinebistro at the Dolphin Mall recently for this piece and was quite impressed. Sure, it's WAY out west. We're talking edge of the Everglades west. You go through seven toll plazas west. Like, I felt I was in another country west. (Is my beach-centric side rearing it's tanned head here?) But if you make an experience of it and slap on a few mall-based errands it's not so bad. And once you settle into those massive leather seats and crack open a bottle of Goats Do Roam wine (about $20) you start thinking, this is absolute genius. The ticket price is a bit steep - $15 on the weekdays and $17 on the weekends but you do get free valet (you're at the mall so that's not such a perk) and the ability to choose your seats which is rather convenient if you're with a group of friends. The pseudo-swanky lounge designed with Philippe Starck furniture is every idea the French designer has ever had distilled to suburban-friendly proportions. Dangling glass chandeliers, gilded framed mirrors hanging precariously from the ceiling, white curtains flowing. Needless to say, the folks at the Dolphin Mall were loving it.
And the food? For the most part it's fine. No culinary surprises here. Most of the menu is constructed such that the food is partially cooked or almost ready to go because it comes out within, oh, about 90 seconds of ordering it. Skip the mushroom starter-not worth $12. The skirt steak (below) was a nice dish, a generous portion and not bad for $17. The snapper was well-executed with nice hunks of banana but not worth $23. It's better to stick to the budget-priced items like the guacamole and veggie burrito. The one dessert we tried, the deconstructed key lime, was underwhelming. You're better off getting a Toblerone from the upscale concession stand.

All in all it's a fun movie-watching experience. There are no kids, everyone's a bit tipsy and every so often you'd hear plates crash to the floor as some clumsy theater patron fumbles with their tray table.


Anonymous said...

Yeah, the prices struck me as way too high. The bowling in Dolphin Mall is just as bad. I work out here in Doral, but it is a suburban wasteland as far as nightlife/any hint of culture.

sara said...

Eesh. Doral? I feel for you. You bring up a good point, though. That's why I think this place is a big hit out there. It's like South Beach lite. And with cheaper cocktails.

The Chowfather said...

I've been wanting to open a similar type concept for years but they are missing the boat on a couple of key issues that I will keep to myself... APD did u see Batman??

sara said...

chowfather - curious to hear your feedback. And NO have not seen Batman and am aching to see it! From what I've heard it is excellent.