Dhat Island spawned out of Island, a former catering company specializing in Caribbean and Creole fare. When loyal clients of the catering company began making requests for "that rice" and "that chicken,? it prompted the company?s owners to create a full-fledged restaurant with a new name: Dhat Island. Dhat Island's head chef uses elements from her husband's Haitian recipes and blends them with traditional Southern cuisine in a varied menu. Plaintain fritters, oxtail tamales, and bourbon chicken are featured alongside mainstays such as whole red tilapia, which is seasoned, fried, and nestled on a bed of lettuce, tomatoes, and avocados.
In Dhat Island's Sunday Feast series, diners gather around a communal table to enjoy family-style portions of chicken, seafood, and beef and brag about their most recent report cards. For dessert, you can pick from a platter of sugar-dusted beignets.
The colors in the giant paintings that adorn the walls of Las Costa Mariscos are only overshadowed by the vibrantly hued dishes at each table, where diners dig in to Rosarito- and Sonora-style Mexican dishes. A variety of shrimp specialties join grilled steak and chicken mole on the family-owned eatery?s menu, along with four lobster variations that include Thermidor, a-la-plancha, and deep-fried preparations.
The chefs at Mill Creek Cattle Co. serve up an expansive menu of slow-smoked meats amid a boot-stomping array of vivid Wild West–inspired décor. Each morning, the Mill Creek meat mavens awake to blend another batch of custom barbecue sauce—a tangy mix of bell peppers, onions, chili peppers, tomato sauce, and secret seasonings—to be slathered on slabs cooked over an aromatic, citrus-wood smoker. Tuck teeth into the harmonious flavors of the pulled and occasionally pushed pork ($14.95), or compose melodies on the meaty xylophone of the original baby back ribs ($21.95 for a full rack). The fried steak ($15.95) tramples appetites under a stampede of battered beef, mashed potatoes, gravy, and cornbread, served with a side of honey butter churned by extraordinarily strong bees. A 25-ounce root-beer float ($3.95) helps to soothe oversauced incisors, and hot chocolate ($2) can provide a mahogany hue to prized coonskin caps.
El Kiosco Express's history stretches back to the 70s. The owners opened their first Mexican eatery then, using recipes from founder Edward's hometown of Sonora, Mexico. A few decades later, these recipes for burritos, taco salad, and quesadillas still sizzle on the grills. At the Redlands eatery, a straightforward decor with green walls and ceiling fans surrounds the savory scents wafting from the kitchen.
Ono Hawaiian BBQ brings the island to the mainland with tender meats soaked in made-from-scratch marinades. Chefs hand roll chicken katsu in panko bread crumbs to give it a fresh, crispy texture, and assemble generous portions of crispy shrimp, island whitefish, and barbecue chicken in the seafood mix.
Little Fisherman Seafoods purchases fresh fish daily in limited quantities, ensuring customers a strictly fresh seafood selection. Satisfy stomachs with homemade clam chowder ($3.95 cup, $5.95 bowl) or bean bag-toss an order of oysters on the half-shell into gullet goals ($8.95). Little Fisherman Seafoods fries up 14 savory varieties of fish and chips, including halibut ($15.95) and catfish ($11.95), and the Fisherman platter with a choice of four sea settlers, all served with coleslaw and french fries or rice pilaf ($15.95). Grilled salmon shares a seabed with one side and a dinner salad and distracts hungry eyes with its bold orange hues, allowing mouths to sneak a clandestine chomp ($19.95). Nestled between hand-cushioning buns, salmon or crab cake burgers arrive with coleslaw and french fries or rice pilaf ($8.95 each).