Food La La: Hard Rock remixes menu
TEXT AND PHOTOS BY LINDSEY MURAOKA / Special to the Star-Advertiser
With over 140 restaurants in 56 countries, Hard Rock Cafe is known for its amazing collection of rock ‘n’ roll music memorabilia and collectible merchandise.
Now the focus turns to food, as the Hard Rock recently launched a brand new menu after 14 months of research, development and over 3,000 guest evaluations. The updated menu consists of 30 new items and 28 revamped items from the old menu. I was invited to a tasting on Thursday to sample some of these new entrees and drinks.
As soon as I sat down, I was offered one of these cute mini margaritas called Air Mexico. There are six flavors — wildberry, pomegranate, watermelon, blue curacao, mango and cucumber — and you have your choice of three flavors with chips and salsa for $14. The cocktails are all made with Avion Silver tequila and orange liqueur.
The Hard Rock wants drinking to be a fun experience with friends, so they created the Red Berry Press ($13) for interactive sharing. It’s made with Svedka Clementine vokda and fresh lemons, raspberries and strawberries. The color of the drink changes to a pretty red as you continue to press on the fruits. This was my favorite drink of all the cocktails I tried. Don’t forget to eat the fruit, too!
The Magical Mystery Mojito (I love The Beatles-esque name!) was very refreshing and had a strong cucumber flavor. It’s made with Hendrick’s gin and St. Germain Elderflower liqueur ($9.40).
There are several new appetizers on the menu. This is the creamy and very cheesy spinach artichoke dip ($11.95) with parmesan flatbread.
The Rockin’ Wings were my favorite ($11.95)! They are tangy with just a touch of spiciness. They are served with blue cheese sauce, carrots and celery sticks.
The Hard Rock’s version of nachos, called “Nachopalooza” ($11.95), is topped with a three-bean mix, pico de gallo, jalapeños and sour cream with Monterey Jack and cheddar cheeses.
The freshly made, crispy Onion Rings ($11.95)!
One of the new salads is a Grilled Chicken Arugula with spicy pecans, dried cranberries, fresh oranges and feta cheese with a lemon balsamic vinaigrette.
We tried the Hickory Smoked BBQ Chicken and Ribs Combo ($23.95). The chicken was your typical BBQ-flavored poultry, but what really stood out were the ribs. They fell right off the bone because they were so tender and soft!
The Smoked Beef Brisket ($13.95) was also tender and flavorful. The crispy onion and fried jalapeños added a nice crunchy texture to the sandwich.
This is the Original Legendary Burger ($15.95) with bacon, cheddar cheese, an onion ring, lettuce and tomatoes.
The Fiesta Burger ($15.95) was served with roasted jalapeno salsa, melted Jack cheese, guacamole, pico de gallo, lettuce and tomatoes. I love guacamole so this was my favorite.
On to dessert! I loved the Twist and Shout Shake ($11.95)! It’s made with pure awesomeness – Guinness, Bacardi Spiced rum, chocolate syrup, vanilla ice cream, salted caramel, whipped cream — and bacon! Yes, bacon makes everything amazing.
Even when I’m full, I somehow manage to fit in dessert. My favorite was the Hot Fudge Brownie Sundae ($8.95)! For one thing, it’s gigantic! It’s filled with Ben & Jerry’s vanilla ice cream, chopped walnuts, chocolate sprinkles, freshly made whipped cream and a cherry on top. I love that the brownie was chewy soft and not overly sweet.
And finally, this is the house made creamy Cheesecake ($8.50) with a yummy Oreo cookie crust.
For more information about the new menu, check out the Hard Rock Cafe website.
Lindsey Muraoka blogs about food and drink for the Pulse. Contact her on Twitter or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.