When I walked into Russell's Blue Water Grill I was greeted with a picture frame of a review by Zagat.com. I'm not a huge fan of Zagat.com as it take a while to load webpages properly and their reviews have such a unique method that it would take some getting used to. I suppose I could grow into them. The review in the picture frame looked pretty good, but I didn't let that cloud my judgement.
It was a little after lunch and this place was dead. There were only two tables seated with under 4 people at each table. When I walked in a noticed a piano to my left along with a nicely set up bar. To my right and also in front of me were several tables that were already set up for fancy dining. My waitress Erika placed me near the bar in a well set up booth. She immediately took my drink order and told me about their 3 course lunch special. That seemed a little much considering this place is in a strip mall and the decor was set up like a clearance section at Pier One.
After looking more at the decor I noticed that it was a mixture of different styles. I like the idea of the large mirrors and vases set up around the place, but the Denny's style glass partitions kind of take away from the copper and candle lit glow this place could have. Everything seemed clean at first, but at second glance the partitions had food stuck on them and the dishes had dark spots on them that looked like they were dirty (they weren't dirty, but the dingy dishes gave that illusion).
As you all know I realize that sometimes restaurants have an off day and I would be willing to try this place again, just not if I'm paying. The cost was high on a lot of the menu items and the food wasn't at the same level. My waitress Erika was good at what she does, but keep in mind that by the time my food hit the table I was the only person left in the restaurant. I'm not really a high maintenance customer (mostly because I try to keep a low profile when I do food reviews). Maybe this place is really only meant to have a dinner menu instead of a lunch menu, but if you're open I'm stopping in. Sorry but Russell's Blue Water Grill restaurant is going int the "No Doggy Bag For Me" list.