Sam Fox’s new Valley restaurant not only dishes up incredible and fresh seafood, but also a cool, casual spot to linger a while. Little Cleo’s Seafood Legend opened in late spring in Phoenix’s new The Yard. (Currently, The Yard also hosts Culinary Dropout.) Upon walking into Little Cleo’s, guests’ eyes are treated to amazing on-ice raw displays of the fresh seafood before taking a seat along the floor-to-ceiling glass garage doors.
One way to kick off the meal is with Little Cleo’s selection of fresh oysters, a star of the menu. The menu also has a delectable selection of small plates–each a great way to tempt the taste buds for what’s to come. The fresh-from-the-fryer sweet corn hush puppies (pictured) are golden, crispy and offer just enough sweetness. It is hard to stop at just one of two of these puppies. The crispy frog legs is another delicious starter, especially when paired with the sweet Thai chili sap and crunchy roasted cashews. One of Little Cleo’s most popular dishes is the jar of warm crab and clarified butter, paired with grilled bread. It doesn’t get much more delicious and comforting than the combo of sweet crab dripping with melted butter.
Though it is easy to fill up on Little Cleo’s yummy small plates, don’t miss out on the entrees. The fish and chips (pictured on homepage) is a great traditional dish that is sure to please any diner. The fish batter is crispy and light–not too greasy–and the fries are thick and delicious. The celery seed coleslaw that accompanies the dish is quite good, too boot. For those in the mood for a little spice, the Cajun shrimp, paired with red potatoes, corn on the cob and grilled bread, is a perfect summer seafood dish.
Last but not least, the old-fashioned maple-glazed cake doughnuts are sinful but simply too good to miss. Dunk ’em in coffee. www.foxrc.com.