Creating something new is never easy.
And let's be real, creating not just something new, but something creative, adventurous, elevated, and still accessible? That's rare, indeed.
But not impossible.
Enter Turks & Caicos Cabana Grille.
It would be easy to look at the former Bracco's location (closed in December 2017) and assume new ownership would offer us Bracco's 2.0. With such a great patio, location, and established clientele, it would be easy to resume business as normal; to choose the path of least resistance.
Yet - with a slight smile and a wink - the Vanguard Hospitality team that created Turks & Caicos seem to be saying, "The path of least resistance doesn't really interest us. Let's go exploring..."
There are a few places in Sioux Falls that really transport me to another part of the world when I'm there. This is one of them.
From the outside, the building looks similar to its former resident. Step inside, however, and you'll notice a fresh, renovated, beautiful interior. Everything from lighting that mimics various forms of sea life, to bright white splashes of the furniture, to a softly blowing breeze from the gorgeous ceiling fans, to Caribbean music floating its ways through the open bar into the dining room, we're there. We're on the beach. Or at least as close as you can get without getting a TSA pat down. (And bonus! No layover in O'Hare or Atlanta...)
Alright, onto the food and drink. That's why we're here.
Some menu items:
Macadamia Crusted Mahi-Mahi, Jamaican Curried Goat, Carne Asada Tacos, Seafood Ceviche, Sous Vide Octopus... You should only go to Turks & Caicos if you read that list and felt one of the following:
C) A little of both...if you want to admit it.
See their full menu here. (And yes, there is something for everyone...kids included!)
While the menu offers both familiar and less familiar dishes, all of them read as thoughtful, unique, and creative. The days of lackluster fish tacos and overcooked shrimp are over.
Case in point: the last time I had octopus, I was on the Amalfi Coast (where they are well practiced in the ways of preparing octopus). I was hesitant to try it here. I was enjoying myself so much and I know how hard it is to get octopus right. But try I did (that's the gig sometimes) and let me just say: the crew that prepared this octopus served their ingredients so well. It was delicious.
OK, now can we talk about drinks?
Fresh, authentic Caribbean cocktails (that aren't mostly sugar)? Yes, please! AND a wine list that is reason alone for wine lovers to come hang out at their bar? (Or on the patio - opening soon!)
Side note. If you're familiar with the former cocktail menu at this location, you may be expecting something similar. Don't. Technically, yes, you could call the former drinks "cocktails". (But some people also call an Orange Mocha Frappuccino "coffee"...)
Here's the deal: if you're even slightly interested in what an intentional, quality craft cocktail with a beachside vibe tastes like, try something at Turks & Caicos. No shame in asking for help and recommendations too. (Unless you actually do want an Orange Mocha Frappuccino...)
So my advice? Go to Turks & Caicos Cabana Grille, but leave your expectations at home. Go with an open mind and be ready for an adventure. Oh, and please order something you've never tasted. (That Jamaican Curried Goat you guys...I'll just leave that recommendation right here...) And save room for dessert. Or make room. You won't regret it.