1900 Southeast 15th Street Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33316
Tucked away on a back street that's a bit tricky to find, 15th Street Fisheries has a big, cheerful bar that's popular at happy hour when the professional set flocks here in search of a date. Many stay to dine on a wide range of seafood selections with a few options for die-hard landlubbers. One thing is for sure: the fish is fresh, the dishes are creative and the setting is romantic.
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.
No matter the price tag, this delightful oceanfront restaurant draws crowds, thanks as much to its breathtaking views of the Atlantic just across the street as to the excellent fusion cooking available here. A chic crowd frequents this restaurant along the Fort Lauderdale beach strip, dining indoors in a minimalist atmosphere aglitter with crystal and white linen or outside on a covered deck that can be blocked from the breezes, if need be. Candles glitter, a professional staff is in charge, and the food is ethereal. Asian flavors are evident but the innovative cuisine generally defies simple explanation. The menu offers, for instance, a wood-seared, soft-shelled crab. Overall, the East City Grill is elegant, chic and flavorful.
Diners here experience the feeling of being on the water; the restaurant rests on a finger of land, outstretched into the Port. Decked out in Mexican tile floors and with a cheerful Mediterranean ambience, Burt & Jack's was founded by actor Burt Reynolds. The menu focuses on dry-aged New York steaks, lobster and chops, accompanied by a variety of excellent salad and seafood appetizer choices. The full bar adjoining the restaurant offers live piano music each evening from 5p until close. This location has won many dining awards. Jackets are required.
141 Northeast 26th Street Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33305
Simple wood furnishings, a big bar and, most of all, solid, dependable cooking help Old Florida draw loyal diners. You'll find a warm welcome from folks who'll remember you after you've dined here once, and who know their fish. Fresh seafood appears in familiar preparations as lobster Newburg, or fish prepared in a lemony francaise style, sauteed, fried or grilled.
3599 North Federal Highway Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33308
A Fort Lauderdale landmark, the Mai-Kai restaurant offers great food and authentic Polynesian entertainment. Its thatched roof and carved totems are set against a backdrop of fiery torches and waterfalls. Inside, décor includes giant palm-frond fans, massive carvings and high-backed wicker chairs. It has won many awards for excellent cuisine, decor and entertainment. Massive Chinese ovens create some of the best roast pork in the state and the Crab Rangoon is delicious. The service is excellent, and the drinks offered include those showy options served in coconuts and pineapples.
287 East Oakland Park Boulevard Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33334
Handsomely decorated and sleekly sophisticated, this is no ordinary Chinese restaurant. Acclaimed by many as one of the top Chinese restaurants in Florida, Rainbow Palace is as luxurious and formal (waiters wear tuxedos) as it is subtle in cuisine and approach. Wok-grilled items are featured, teamed with fresh everything, from asparagus to snow peas and peppers, with Szechuan or Cantonese preparations dominating. Once inside, you're in another, elegant world. There is a full bar as well.
3031 East Commercial Boulevard Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33308
In any season you'll find a crowd, drawn by an excellent salad bar, good steaks, chops and seafood, and a pleasantly diverting atmosphere packed with antique memorabilia and plants. Service is pleasant and steaks are perfectly cooked and they know what "Pittsburgh" (charred on the outside, cool inside) is, the ultimate test of a real steakhouse. Many swear by the sliced sirloin or a steak kabob made with tender filet and fresh vegetables, while others love the seafood options.
321 North Atlantic Boulevard (A1A) Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33304
Former Miami Dolphins' football coach, Don Shula, created this restaurant. It rapidly became a mainstay of an upscale crowd. Dine with a view, both indoors and outside on a covered patio. Wall-sized televisions showing football games are the least attractive thing about this white tablecloth dining spot that focuses on steaks. Do not expect to find a cheap meal here, but do expect to be treated with care and served premium beef, which is far and away the favorite selection. Make reservations if you want to snag one of the tables with an ocean view.
Royal India's decorative connections to both royalty and India are slim, but the food's good and that's what has kept the place in business for years. A favorite with vegetarians, the restaurant features plenty of options for omnivores as well. You'll find all the usual Indian flavors, from simple curries to creamy Chicken Tikka Masala, puffy or crispy Indian breads and fiery Vindaloo options. Outfitted more like a country inn than exotic India, the restaurant is a good spot for casually served, simply good, Indian options. Beer and wine are available and the restaurant is open for lunch on weekends.
Conveniently located near many of south Florida's major attractions, including
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