2701 Oakland Park Boulevard Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33306
Frankie & Johnny's has remained the neighborhood's go-to restaurant for authentic Italian, and after going through a rough patch, they are up and running with the same old flair. Farm-to-fork creations highlighting Italian flavors and fresh ingredients, make this quaint eatery stand out among the hoards of chain-restaurants. Whether it is their signature chicken "Frankie & Johnny's" or meatballs and riccotta, each dish is cooked in traditional style using original recipes and secret sauces. Imported wines and beers accompany the pastas and meats, and make for perfect pairings.
2378 North Federal Highway Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33305
Enjoying a firm footing as the preferred dining spot for locals, Sage French Cafe by Chef Laurent Tasic serves a fine spread of French dishes like the steak au poivre, coq au vin and crepes. The traditional menu is accompanied by a classic wine collection from around the world. The ambience is intimate and stylish, quite like its counterparts in Europe.
4196 South University Drive Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33328
Southern hospitality reigns supreme here at this Davie establishment. Southern Swank Kitchen serves up some of the best southern classics around, from their perfectly fried chicken and waffles, hush puppies to their perfectly smoked St Louis ribs and pulled pork. Not to be out done, their signature cocktails list is just as delicious with concoctions like spiked sweet tea, raspberry vodka infused lemonade and old fashions. Sepia toned photographs, reclaimed wood accents and mason jar drinks lend a hand to the southern style ambiance.
When those hunger pangs set in at odd hours of the night, there are few better options than Flashback Diner, a classic diner serving up tasty American staples. Open 24 hours, Flashback is known for its simple American dishes like burger, fries, mac n' cheese, milkshakes, salads and more. Feel like breakfast in the middle of the night? Head to this pop culture themed haunt where you can satiate your cravings at any hour.
2221 South University Drive Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33324
Esposito's Pizza is a quintessentially local place, tucked away in the Promenade West Shopping Center and providing locals with some of the tastiest New York-style pies in town. While they feature a comprehensive lineup of classic Italian-American dishes, the predictable hits at Esposito's are the deep dish pizzas. Delicious combinations like the Greek Pizza with feta, olives and onions as well as the Meat Combo with ham, sausage, pepperoni and meatballs are some of the hits here, although each pizza has its loyal following. Esposito's Pizza is a fun family location to pick up a quick pie or linger with some garlic rolls.
1025 North Federal Highway Wolf Camera Plaza Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33304
After everyone's beloved BBQ spot in downtown closed its doors, Texas Hold 'Em BBQ popped up at another location between Sunrise and Lake Ridge. It brings back the same-old energy and delicious smoky BBQs that it is known for in a laid-back and typical American setting complete with a wrap-around bar, TVs and little nick-knacks adorning the walls. Grilled in a brick hearth, the tender and smoky meats are juicy and infused with just the right spices and sauces that smack your taste-buds right from the very first bite. Try the Beef Brisket, Rib Tips, Pulled Pork Sandwiches and Whole Chicken that are served with a choice of their signature potatoes, fries and beans. A good selection of beers with mostly crafts, perfectly rounds off the dinner (and commences the long night of beer-guzzling and fun!)
1818 East Sunrise Boulevard Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33304
Prickly pears from cacti turn margaritas a pale pink at this Southwestern restaurant. Decked out in the soft pastel colors of the nation's desert states, this restaurant is located near a movie theater on busy Sunrise Boulevard. Canyon packs in diners in search of contemporary cuisine, which is this restaurant's specialty. Red snapper served with purple Peruvian potatoes is one of many creative options that lure the trendy crowd. Dessert options include a sorbet tangy with the snap of chili peppers. Go around the back to find free parking.
Christened after the namesake boulevard it calls home, Bistro 1902 is the reference point for authentic French flavors in Hollywood. The restaurant is family owned and operated, with a menu created from several years spent in France's best kitchens. It boasts cuisine-symbolic dishes like Foie Gras, Beef Bourguignon, Gnocci Pasta with Shrimp, Filet Mignon and Red Snapper with Caper white wine sauce. The thoughtfully-selected wine list is a great meal accompaniment and features globe-spanning varieties. Paintings on the exposed brick walls, leather booths and a communal vibe spell a cross between quintessential Parisian bistro and American diner.
1499 Southeast 17th Street Causeway Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33314
Tokyo Japanese is a chic Japanese restaurant, located in Fort Lauderdale. Opt for some of their delicious appetizers and salads to start of your meal. All seafood dishes are fresh and is perfectly cooked. The meat is tender enough and is adequately flavored. The sushi bar has so many options that you're sure to be confused. Take your servers advice or go for the platter which has an assorted selection. Choose to be seated in the patio area if the weather permits.
This small, Spartan-looking eatery is located on the second floor of Human Development in Hollywood that specializes in natural health counseling and spiritual healing. You can also eat outside in the meditation garden. The menu is completely vegetarian- vegan on Wednesdays- and offers fresh, interesting and hearty fare. Sandwiches range from the very popular Portobello mushroom in barbecue sauce and mango-coconut puree, to soy protein and cheese. There is veggie "chicken" salad and vegan pizza. Their tortilla chips are homemade and baked, not fried; and they use rice or soy milk in their very light soups. Deserts are interesting and pleasing to the eyes! Worth exploring if you are vegan and vacationing in the area. - Mercedes de Marchena
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