Saturday, March 31, 2012

Black Sheep Bistro -- Corpus Christi, TX

The Black Sheep Bistro at 15201 S. Padre Island Dr. ( is a small, eclectic little place across the bridge on the Island (North Padre for those of you not in South Texas). It's very casual with an eclectic mix of music -- think Willie Nelson, CCR, Crosby, Stills & Nash, played a little louder than most places -- and an eclectic menu. One would expect a place on the Island to serve predominately seafood, but not here. At Black Sheep you can order a steak, pasta, burger, or seafood. Just because you're on the Island doesn't mean you gotta eat fish.

The manager met us at the door as we walked in and seated us at a table for two. This was our third trip to Black Sheep. We went with the intent to blog so we were paying close attention. Of course, this was the one time we'd be served by the daughter of a friend, and Rebecca's amazing, so there's nothing bad we can say about her. Rebecca took our drink orders while we looked over the menu and specials written on a chalkboard that is playfully decorated to draw your eye to items that you won't find on the menu. Rob ordered one of the specials and I ordered from the menu. Rebecca turned in our order and while we waited for our food, we caught up with all that's been going on in her life and her folks since we'd seen them last.

Rob had the Crab Stuffed Flounder. The flounder was beautifully wrapped around the crab filling and sat atop parmesan mashed potatoes with white truffle oil and asparagus. The potatoes were delicious, the truffle oil a faint echo in your mouth. The asparagus was cooked past the al dente stage (we prefer it a bit more crunchy). The crab filling was rich and creamy, but the flounder was just slightly overcooked and a little bit dry. All of the flavors played nicely together and we did a great job of cleaning the plate.

I had the Pescado a la Ticla. Three mahi tacos on corn tortillas with jicama slaw and a chili lime vinaigrette along with a mango salsa and Spanish rice. Rebecca warned me that it was spicy. It was. Very spicy! This dish is not for those with whimpy taste buds.  Fortunately, I like spicy, and I found if you added the mango salsa to the tacos a nice balance was achieved. The heat was fairly intense, but it didn't overpower the flavors. The fish was nicely grilled and meaty, the tortillas perfectly cooked (not fried). The salsa was sweet, but not too. I enjoyed every bite. The only criticism would be for the Spanish rice. I felt it could have more flavor, but it wasn't bad.

As I've stated, this was our third visit and the food has consistently pleased us. We would absolutely recommend Black Sheep Bistro, and we are excited to learn that Black Sheep is adding on to the bistro. Next door, the Barrel is being built. It, hopefully, opens next month. It will basically be a wine bar serving tapas. We will definitely be checking that out!

Since it was slow (we tend to eat earlier than most people), I asked Rebecca if she'd ask the chef if he would mind sharing a simple recipe or kitchen tip. He was willing to offer a tip. I will try to do this for future reviews, also.

Kitchen Tip from the Chef: When cutting onions use a very sharp knife. The sharper the knife, the fewer tears you'll shed because it will cause less damage to the cells as you cut.

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