The feel-good seafood restaurant of the Summer and beyond will be The Optimist, for reasons ranging from its maritime design (floor-to-ceiling windows separated by wood strips made to look like lobster traps, hand-numbered beachhouse-style bathrooms), to its name, which's actually a term for a small dinghy, even though having one makes it pretty tough to be optimistic about anything. Exec chef Adam Evans came over from Fry's JCT Kitchen to craft a menu that includes crabby coconut-brothed mussels, day boat grouper w/ wood-roasted hen of the woods, and crispy Carolina flounder w/ crab roe butter & Decatur-based Love Is Love Farm's rocket salad, which presumably goes well with a tangy spaceship vinaigrette. More wonderfully named things come from the bar, such as the pink gin/ Dolin Blanc/ Angostura bitters The Truth As We Know It (which also somehow manages to deliciously incorporate smoked salmon), the Sea Shanty (basically a Dark & Stormy w/ Harpoon IPA), and the white crème de cacao/ Lillet Blanc/ white whiskey White Train, also a TV show from the '70s that never took off due to really off-beat dancing. And don't forget the Oyster Bar, a sun-bleached wood setup which'll have at least two rotating fruit-punchy booze concoctions, plus dishes like seafood gumbo w/ sausage and Jonah crab, chilled Maine Lobster w/ comeback sauce, and Angels on Horseback, which are very difficult to catch if you're stuck with a small dinghy.
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