Restaurant Impossible Follow-Up — Flood Tide Restaurant (Mystic, Connecticut)

(Last Updated On: March 7, 2012)

The Flood Tide is a restaurant that has been a stable in Mystic, Connecticut for decades. The resturant is a part of the Inn at Mystic. The resturant has been struggling for a while, losing a lot of business. So they applied to be on Resturant Impossible and Robert Irvine came to turn things around.

The Flood Tide Resturant | Click here for the website
When Robert enters the restaurant it seems like he had entered a time warp. The place looked like a place my grandparents would have gone on a date. It wasn’t just the decor, the menu and service as were out dated. The food itself was not up to par either. The guests that Robert brought in where complaining of the food being bland or overloaded with salt. The service was slow, with the servers making Cesar salads right at the table, which may have a certain charm, but slows everything down.

One of the things that restaurant had going for it was a exhibition style kitchen featuring a wood burning oven. However they weren’t using it. The area was very dark and dirty. Robert set out to teach them some recipes that would utilize their equipment. I think home cooks have the same problem. They have equipment at their disposal and they don’t use it, whether it being a lack of confidence or just not knowing what to use it for. I strive to find ways to use the different equipment in my kitchen. I don’t have a wood burning oven, but I do have an electric griddle, which I have found multiple uses for.

Another thing Robert had to address was the restaurant’s bad reputation. People were tired of it. Saw it as something stuck in the past. Because of this Robert decided to change the name of the restaurant. But he didn’t just toss out the Flood Tide name altogether. He changed it to the The Wood Grill at Flood Tide.

The Recipes

Duck Sate with Pomegranate Sauce | Click here for the recipe
Duck has never really appealed to me to try. I don’t know why, maybe because the animal itself is a lot cuter than most animals we eat. The pomegranate sauce can be used for other types of poultry, so I might try it with some chicken.

Grilled Tuna Nicoise | Click here for the recipe
I don’t know why they are calling this grilled tuna as the instruction cleanly state to saute in a pan. The tuna steak is served over some orzo pasta.

From doing some research online it seems a lot of Robert’s changes didn’t stick. First off the name change. There is no mention anywhere of it being called the Wood Grill at Flood Tide. I didn’t see a logo calling it the Flood Tide with the words “Wood Grill Bistro” underneath. At the very least, Robert was able to give them a kick in the pants to start using the wood fire grill.

Second, it seems Robert’s menu items seen on the show aren’t still on the menu. Although I did see the herb half chicken he was showed making listed on their 2 person dinner special.

As for the kitchen messy and the paint job, the Flood Tide came out an defended their self after the show originally aired. They wrote this on their facebook page:

I agree with the painting. I thought their color choice and pattern were too outside the box. I think that was a mistake.

The restaurant itself is currently closed until April 15, 2012 (with exception to Easter Sunday). I found a spot on their website in which it states the restaurant is open year around and then lists closed until April 15th. I guess there aren’t open year around, someone must have forgotten to remove that.

As for the service, you can still find people complaining online after the show about service being slow. I saw several complaints about the restaurant being too cold, makes me wonder if they are trying to save money on the heating bill.

Overall, at least they started using the wood fire oven and it seems that may be the only thing that really changed about the Flood Tide, but it was a positive change.

If anyone has been here since the show aired, let me know what you thought of the place.

If you want more Robert Irvine recipes, here are some of his available cookbooks:
Impossible to Easy: 111 Delicious Recipes to Help You Put Great Meals on the Table Every Day
Mission: Cook!: My Life, My Recipes, and Making the Impossible Easy