Situated midway between the Indian River and the Atlantic Ocean on E. Eau Gallie Blvd., and nestled among a lush array of tropical plants and palms, Rum Fire Grill is the latest local restaurant to transport patrons to an island oasis as they nibble on gourmet fare, sip piña coladas and listen to the sounds of steel drums and saxophones.
“We wanted to create a place where people can come as they are and enjoy the company of their family and friends, but we also wanted to give people a more upscale dining experience. … So, we twisted the two together and made a casual fine dining spot,” explains Nick DiGiacomo, who co-owns the restaurant with his wife Jerika.
The name Rum Fire Grill was spawned from the couple’s travels to the tropics and from their love of a variety of rums from around the world – rums that have been infused not only into the restaurant’s fruity cocktails, but also into its savory sauces, like the rum citrus glaze.
Rum Fire Grill’s menu is comprised of mainly fresh seafood, beef, poultry and pork entrées. The DiGiacomo’s developed the menu in tandem with Chef Alberto Sierra who Nick calls “an amazing attribute” to the restaurant. With 20 years of experience as a chef, Alberto is enjoying the creativity the new restaurant affords, exploring new ideas and concepts to create mouth-watering flavors.
That creativity is especially apparent in Rum Fire Grill’s sauces, which give many of its dishes more than the usual panache. The Double-Bone Pork Chops, for instance, are topped with a unique honey guava barbecue sauce, the Panko-Crusted Grouper with an amaretto sauce and the Coconut Tilapia with a mango cream sauce.
The restaurant’s lunch menu is dotted heavily with sandwiches like the signature Rum Fire Adobo Beef sandwich, which is comprised of shredded-beef tenderloin in an adobo sauce (a tangy, spicy Mexican sauce), then topped with caramelized onions and Havarti cheese. Lunchtime entrées are mainly seafood based, like the Fish Cake or Seafood Pasta, but also include land-loving options, like the Onion-Crusted Chicken.
The 14-ounce New York Strip with bleu cheese demi-glace is the restaurant’s most popular dinner entrée, according to Nick. “Our patrons say it’s like no other,” he says.
Rum Fire Grill also offers two daily lunch and dinner specials that range from yellowtail snapper with Creole sauce to lobster fra diavolo.
Those familiar with Rum Fire Grill’s predecessor, Bonacker’s Seafood, will notice a somewhat similar floorplan. The main dining area is casual, yet refined, tasteful and expansive. Large-print canvases, bamboo poles and other tropical décor add visual interest to a neutrally toned canvas. A private dining area, which can be reserved upon request, can accommodate 60 guests.
The DiGiacomo’s kept the indoor-outdoor square bar in place – a smart move considering its longtime popularity and ability to host a variety of entertainment styles.
Before its opening in late October 2012, the staff was trained on techniques to go above and beyond for patrons, and it certainly shows, especially among the restaurant’s happy and friendly wait staff.
“As new owners, we are proud of our team and all the hard work everyone has put in to make Rum Fire Grill as success,” says Nick.
Just the facts:
Rum Fire Grill
Address: 490 E. Eau Gallie Blvd., Indian Harbour Beach
Phone: (321) 241-4980
Hours: Tuesday through Sunday 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. lunch; 3:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. limited menu; 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. dinner; Friday and Saturday dinner served until 10 p.m. Bar open until midnight or later.