Not many places can actually sweep you away into a world where fantasy becomes reality, especially a restaurant, but Cameron Mitchell has figured it out. This visionary and restaurateur brought his highly successful concept, Mitchell’s Ocean Club, from Columbus, Ohio to the Atlanta in the form of Ocean Prime. As the name implies, it offers the absolute best from land and sea, and so much more. Besides the foods, there is a unique feeling or swagger that is immediately felt once you enter Ocean Prime’s club-like world. The space that once resonated the sounds of smooth jazz, Sambuca, has been replaced with a fashionable panache, sophistication, and glamour that it makes it so easy to feel chic while enjoying the good life. The main attraction of this vibrant supper club is the action-packed, open-air kitchen that’s headed up by Jason Shelley who cut his teeth back as a middle station cook at the Ocean Club a decade ago, and is now the executive chef here in Atlanta. Chef Shelley’s talents to mystify the senses are extraordinary, sit back and let Ocean Prime’s hospitality take over.
No matter if the red carpet sensation guides you to the happening Blu Lounge with its pianist who beats out the standards or to the dining room, the starting point to an evening of ecstasy is the alluring cocktail list. The lively Cucumber Gimlet or the Pineapple Saffron martini are well-crafted concoctions that guarantee to excite the senses, but the drink that brings out the “wow” is the Berries & Bubbles. The cleverly constructed libation is made with Belvedere Citrus Vodka, marinated blackberries, Domaine Chandon Brut, and a zesty house made sour. But what makes this drink unique is the added chunks of dry ice that creates a visual spectacle to behold. After each sip a touch of sinfulness creeps larger into the smile- be careful as fun only a wink away. Besides these outlandish cocktails, Ocean Prime masterfully assembled an outstanding wine list and houses one of the best wine by the glass program in the city. The delicious Numanthia Termes with its fruity, floral aromas provides a velvety yet spicy mouth feel that elicits the desire for a finely prepared juicy steak.
Exploring the menu at Ocean Prime is a challenge as there are so many appealing offerings that can easily get a drool going. To ease that sensation, the “smoking” colossal lump blue crab meat cocktail that’s served with a sassy Crab Louie sauce is a perfect place to begin. In addition to the delectable treats from the raw bar, there is an abundance of stunning appetizers. The artistically prepared Ahi Tuna Tartar is otherworldly - a lush mound of finely chopped fish rests atop mashed avocado that’s drizzled with a citrusy ginger ponzu sauce that has an enticing twang, totally yum. The “off the boat” fresh Point Judith Calamari are marinated in buttermilk, then flash fired, then tossed in a hoisin chili sauce giving these brilliantly prepared crispy rings a tantalizing flavor. Guaranteed to get the taste buds really excited is Ocean Prime’s take on Surf ‘n’ Turf. Succulent slow braised beef short ribs are served in their own jus over a dab of creamy mashed potatoes that’s paired with ultra-tender U-10 scallops that are flash seared enhancing their splendid sweet buttery flavors. Don’t miss this dazzling duo, it’s the ultimate tease as to what Ocean Prime is all about - tasty meats and stellar seafood.
Whatever, don’t forget about the treasures from the garden, especially the salads – Ocean Prime’s house salad is a marvelous blend of diverse flavors and crispy textures that nicely readies the palate for the main offerings. From the Chef Compositions, order a fish selection with any of the well-marbled, prime grade steaks and share the scrumptious tastes of both to taste the best from “land and sea” with your evening’s dining mate. The mouthwatering steaks are aged for over 3 weeks for maximum tenderness and flavor, addictively seasoned, then broiled at 1200 degrees to whatever temperature you desire. To amp up these juicy beef flavors consider either the classic Béarnaise or the Green Peppercorn sauces as an accompaniment as they compliment the char flavors of the steak oh so well. Of the fish either the mild tasting broiled Chilean Sea Bass with a rich champagne truffle sauce or the savory “salt ’n’ pepper” tuna that’s seared to perfection are can’t miss choices, both are prepared exquisitely retaining their moist melt-in-your-mouth fresh flavors. When you can eat the best, why settle for less?
To send the senses to a complete state of bliss, order the ten layer carrot cake, yes, ten thin layers of moist nirvana with a cream cheese icing in between each that’s topped with a tangy pineapple sauce. This treat seems to have been made for a glass of Grand Marnier to sip on and settle into complete satisfaction. The best part of the Ocean Prime experience is that you get to take with you that special feeling of being suave and sexy, and whenever you want that feeling to be revived you know it can be found at Ocean Prime again and again. Enjoy!
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