Alligator Tails and Grouper Cheeks


The debris from last night’s violent thunder storm was being hosed off the patio at the waterfront club as we approached. My skin had been clammy all day with the stifling humid heat of the Florida summer but now was feeling refreshed.  Miami’s Bayfront Park area is filled with many fine and casual restaurants where I love to enjoy a fresh seafood brunch but the acrid fume of an idling gasoline engine churning up the saltwater next to the wharf threatened to take the edge off my appetite. The last time I ate here, my lips were puckered from the refreshing tart unsweetened key lime iced tea and I look forward to it again. We heard the sound of the seagulls cawing overhead reminding us that we needed a table with an umbrella. We ordered several appetizers including Alligator tail and Grouper cheeks. The tail was prepared in a crunchy cornflake cocoanut batter and served with a spicy Cajun dip. The succulent juices of the delicate flesh squirted in my mouth as I bit into the tasty morsels. I felt my mouth stretch into a wide smile. It was a delightful flavour. The grouper cheeks were another matter. They were panfried to a light crispness and a tart key lime drizzle but where had all these tiny bones come from? Cod cheeks are the tenderloin cut from under the eye with no bone. I suspected that these weren’t really grouper cheeks. This was going to need some more investigation.