Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 23 August 2014

Graeme McDowell to open US bistro

Graeme McDowell with his fiancee Kristin Stape
Graeme McDowell with his fiancee Kristin Stape

Golf star Graeme McDowell has revealed his tasty plans to open a trendy Florida bistro on St Patrick’s day.

2010 US Open winner G-Mac will swing open the doors to Nona Blue in Lake Nona, Orlando Florida next month and has excitedly posted a copy of the bistro’s mouth watering menu on Twitter ahead of the Paddy’s Day launch par-tee.

Billing itself as a “modern tavern”, the 5,618 sq ft restaurant is located in a retail park close to the swish Lake Nona Golf and Country Club.

The 33-year-old Portrush man has stayed true to his culinary roots, with Northern Ireland specialties mussels, traditional fish and chips and all day fry up on the menu.

Nona Blue will also cook up American classics like back ribs, New York strip steak, creamed corn, grits, meatloaf and Florida shrimp with belly busting desserts like hot cider doughnuts, banoffee pie and hot fudge sundae also on offer.

His title dish, G-Mac and Cheese, is a mouth watering combination of cold water lobster, smoked bacon with a three cheese blend — yours for $10.

And despite his millionaire status, a trip to Nona Blue won’t break the bank either with prices starting from just $6 for a cheese toast basket up to $28 for a filet mignon steak with baked potato and bearnaise sauce.

Fellow golf legend and friend Darren Clarke has already secured himself an invite to Nona Blue from G-Mac via Twitter, while Rory McIlroy and tennis star girlfriend Caroline Wozniacki will no doubt become regulars at the eaterie after world number one Rory splashed out on a mansion said to be worth $10.9 million in Florida’s Palm Beach Gardens late last year.

But if Graeme wants to make some cash in the restaurant business, he’s going to have to keep his generosity in check.

After taking home $1.2 million in the World Challenge late last year, Graeme celebrated by offering all the press at the event a free drink at Nona Blue.

“Traditionally when I win an event I call home to my home golf club at Rathmore,” he said.

“But Lake Nona has kind of become my second home golf club, and I typically have a free bar for the members at Rathmore for a defined period of time, obviously.

“But I think traditionally it may be drinks on the house at Nona Blue when I win a tournament.

“Thankfully it’s not open yet — so I’ll save a few dollars this time around.”

2013 is set to be a busy year for G-Mac, who is also thought to be busy planning his upcoming marriage to American fiance Kristin Stape.

Gorgeous interior designer Kristin has been heavily involved with furnishing Nona Blue and getting it ready to welcome diners.

Kristin and G-Mac first met when he employed her to decorate his Orlando home.

The romantic sportsman then popped the question in Dubai late last year and the couple are likely tying the knot at the end of 2013.

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