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“Not just dining, great for an evening out”
Review of Darwin's on 4th - CLOSED

Darwin's on 4th
Price range: $30 - $30
Cuisines: Contemporary, Brew Pub
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Late Night, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Dining
Reviewed August 25, 2013

Went to go to Blue Rooster but again decided not worth the hassle. Instead, my husband and i took our two children to Darwin's and had a wonderful evening!! We were seated upstairs for the first time(3rd time here) and our daughter loved looking down on the 2 piece band and dancing without us worrying about her getting in servers way. The on-site brewery had many options for my husband and i love innovative cocktails. There were several items on the menu to tempt our 14 year old(even though he still went with the sirloin burger) and our daughter loved the chicken kabobs with plantain chips. We love the menu that Darwin helped create for The Cottage and that there are many similar items here that are still different. I love that i can enjoy a lighter meal of ceviche and tiraditos while my husband can still be satisfied with a heartier entree. Last night he had the skirt steak and loved it. We take our children out to more restaurants then most families would probably agree with.(Our son collects chef cards from fine dining restaurants he has attended around the country and our 3 year old loves to go to "chefs"!) Perhaps our children have an easier time sitting through a dining experience but the beautiful location and warm atmosphere make this a perfect spot for a fun family dinner out. We will be back soon!

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Thank adrian t
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviews (294)
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143 - 147 of 294 reviews

Reviewed August 16, 2013

One of the better restaurants in SRQ. Admittedly a bit pricey, but that's why the good lord hath given us groupon and living social.

This was our second foray to Darwin's. The first time I came with my girlfriend was enjoyable and we both wanted to try other items on the menu. So, we came back.

Going to start with the service. For once I remembered the server's name (I never can). Enrique was fantastic. Easy to remember since he used to bartend at locations around Sarasota, but ignoring the fact that I already knew him, he was like an encyclopedia of knowledge about the menu. A server who takes his profession seriously and ensures he knows all there is to know about the food. Service was superb.

As for the food - this is another Peruvian restaurant in Sarasota (one of my more recent reviews was of Inkanto, also in Sarasota). I like Inkanto better for the food, Darwin's better for the atmosphere, and the service at both was excellent. But while I would choose Inkanto for the food, that shouldn't take anything away from Darwin's. It is still excellent and deserving of 5 stars.

I don't recall what I got my first time, but this time I got the Malbec Braised Short Ribs. They were perfect. Tender, juicy, falling apart like they should, served with a malbec wine sauce over risotto, that was also perfect. Mouth is watering just thinking about it. My girlfriend got the Arctic Char, and thoroughly enjoyed her's, too, but I didn't taste it, so you'll have to read her review.

My only complaint was that their bread sucks. Tiny little rolls like you'd get at Red Lobster, only these aren't cheesy. Their more like puff pastries. Full of air and no taste. A good place that has awesome bread service will be raised a notch, but I am not going to take any credit away from Darwin's over their bread. Everything else was too good.

We'll be back.

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Thank tbow77
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 10, 2013

We went for the first time, tonight to Darwins. The establishment has a beautiful interior/bar area, and intimate dining room. We had reservations, but decided to begin our meal seated at a booth in the bar area, as happy hour was on, and it is not observed in the dining room. When we were seated we mentioned to the hostess that we would be using a Living Social Deal, and we were told that we could use it on the main menu, as it was not to be honored during happy hour or on the special appetizer offerings in the bar area. We were aware of this. That having been said, and understood, we ordered a Mojito (delicious, not too sweet) and my husband had the house Chardonnay ( average ). We then ordered the calamari appetizer, which was served crispy (we asked for this and were very pleased), the calamari came with a small dollop of tartar sauce, and sweet chili sauce was dribbled over the calamari. Very lightly. We asked for extra sauce, as there really was not much of it at all, and were told by the hostess that it would be an extra $ 1 per sauce.......well, we thought at first she was joking. No, that is the rule, and would we like it? NO thank you. Our waitress, Daniela was very efficient. We also ordered the house special salad, and it was quite good, she explained that the large kernels of corn in the salad were a special Peruvian corn, it was different and good. We had asked for the dressing on the side, and it was provided, we had a lot of that, and used it for the calamari! It had an orange flavor. Now it was time for dinner, and we decided the bar area, and our small quiet table was just fine, we would eat here , and order from the regular menu. We told Daniela that we had the Living Social Coupon. (we had already stated this upon our arrival to the hostess who explained that we could use it but only on the regular menu). Daniela, pointed out that the coupon was not honored on Saturday night. We did not realize this, it was an honest mistake, but were quite surprised that the hostess, knowing this, had not made us aware of it at all. At that point, we felt that it was going downhill fast, and we decided to leave, and have dinner elsewhere. The menu is varied, different, and somewhat pricey. We went to Darwin's as we had frequented the Selva Grille, which he established years ago, and loved it. We still go to Selva, and ended up there tonight. In any case, we did ask for the manager prior to leaving Darwin's and spoke to Matthew Cornelius. We explained what happened, and how it was very disappointing to find out there is a charge for extra sauce, and secondly that we were not reminded of the coupon not being honored on Saturday evening when we initially arrived. He offered us a drink, said he would make the trip worth our while, (we had driven up from Venice), but that really was not the point. We declined. Our point was that the communication could have been better from the beginning, and that the extra $ 2 for the sauces, was, well, just plain ridiculous. We are not complainers to get extra "stuff". We too are local business people, who live and work here, who just value extraordinary food/environment/service, with out a lot of baloney. And yes, we do like a good deal on occasion, that is why we do business with Living Social, or Groupon. However, this Living Social Coupon......???? We are not going back, and not sure if we will even give it to someone else to try out. Shame on you, Darwin's! I am giving this an average rating because the Calamari was very good,as was the salad, and because of the beautiful interior, and classy "look" to the place, but it was not a "classy" night.

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1  Thank caspersengirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 8, 2013

Darwin's on 4th was a great restaurant! Unique ambiance, great beer and wine selections, fabulous food, and great service!

Thank jerseygirl0806
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 6, 2013

Service and atmosphere was good but food overpriced and portion size small. I'm not sure I'll go again.

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Thank Lisariggskelly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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