Lounge pays homage to Hemingway’s words

The expressive prose of Ernest Hemingway’s “A Moveable Feast” informed General Manager Megan Hylton’s vision of Bumby’s. With few words, Hemingway builds the image of eating fresh chilled oysters and drinking wine in vivid detail.

And with a little more research, the name choice seemed a no-brainer. Islamorada’s Hemingway-inspired fine dining spot would be named after the famed author’s infant nickname, Bumby, decided Hylton.

“Hemingway later gave the same term of endearment to his son Jack,” added Hylton, whose initial research of Hemingway gave-way to deep fascination for the notorious Keys icon.

The casual fine dining restaurant’s food choices and atmosphere share much of what the famed author described. With art hung along the wall, calming music, and a relaxed ambiance, it’s easy to feel at home and inspired at Bumby’s.

At first glance, it’s difficult to decide on the menu – there are so many mouther watering choices. The raw bar and appetizers have plenty of tasty starters, like the pork belly monte cristo. Moving on to the entrees, it only gets harder to pick.

Bumby’s butter poached lobster agnolotti, a local favorite, comes accompanied with sautéed sweet corn, spinach, and sherry cream sauce. The black and bleu burger, with its savory gastrique sauce, is generously covered with creamy blue cheese.

The gumbo recently won Best Soup at Island Fest’s Taste of Islamorada It’s a traditional style gumbo that has shrimp, crawfish, chicken, sausage, okra and peppers. And the filet mignon is life changing.

But Hemingway would probably agree that after dinner, it’s time for a refreshment. And at Bumby’s, you have choices. Downstairs, the restaurant itself has a bar, or you can venture upstairs to the newly christened lounge – The Attic. After a tedious renovation, The Attic recently opened its doors to patrons.

You’ll find inviting furnishings and seating to gather at and get cozy. Behind the bar, Brandon Meyers is carefully pouring his mastered drinks.

Meyers has been tending bar for six years, and has an extensive repertoire. With a knack for creating well-balanced drinks that play to individual tastes, Meyers says he’s excited to have the locals try something new and unexpected.  One method for robust taste Meyers has incorporated into his libations is the use of smoked fruit, to create a smoky taste.

“I like to do interesting things with fire,” quips Meyers.

Monday nights are dollar oysters starting at 5 p.m. Happy hour prices are reasonably affordable for top shelf liquors and beer. Bumby’s Raw Bar and Libations is open early on Sundays, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Regular hours are Mondays, and Thursdays through Sundays, 5 p.m. – 10 p.m.

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