Sunday, August 29, 2010

Blue Heaven

If you ever find yourself in Key West, you must visit Blue Heaven. In the Bahamanian section of the city, at the corner of Thomas and Petronia, just a few blocks from Hemingway's house, you'll find it there. Eclectic, eccentric, enjoyable. At Blue Heaven guests choose from indoor seating (I don't even know what that looks like) or outdoor seating. Outside find mis-matched patio tables unified by the recently updated all white plastic chairs under a canopy of live oaks and foliage boasting blooms and vines. Roosters and hens wander the dining room as do  various and sundry cats. White Christmas lights twinkle in trees and string themselves across sections of the outside dining room. There is a stage--for playing mostly--and a ping pong table and a bandshell with a lively mermaid tacked to its ceiling. Though the atmosphere never fails to raise my spirits, the food is truly heavenly.

Rick and I have eaten at Blue Heaven since we discovered the restaurant during our 1st anniversary celebration in Key West in 1996. We love it so much that when my brother decided to get married in Key West, we convinced my mom to hold the reheasal dinner there. We arrived to approve the final menus and found the manager spraying down the dining room's dirt floor with a hose (to prevent dust he told us). The dirt, the hose, the whole outside business made mom a little nervous. But Blue Heaven lived up to its name that evening and has ever since for us.

During our last visit, the Carrot and Curry Soup stole the show. Amazing. Creamy with just the right touch of curry. My grouper was stuffed with baby red potatoes. And the corn bread? A wedge of pure deliciousness. The key lime pie? Incredibly tall. Perfectly  key lime-y. Tart and sweet, I loved it. Our waiter regaled us with a story of Kenny Chesney making Blue Heaven history on Oprah. But I have to say, we knew Blue Heaven when. If you get to Key West, it's a must visit spot.