Archive for the ‘RESTAURANT REVIEWS FORT LAUDERDALE’ Category

ROSSINI BAR & GRILL REVIEW FORT LAUDERDALE   2 comments

Walking in the door the first impression was that Rossini was a new place, sterile-looking, with no warmth and certainly not Italian!  We were greeted by 2 servers telling us to sit where we would like. Very quickly we were brought a large bottle of water and glasses filled with ice plus a basket of bread and side dishes each with oil and Balsamic vinegar on each.
We ordered an Antipasto Di Pesce (Shrimp, clams, mussels, calamari in a tomato sauce with spices) $17* for an appetizer, which was served beautifully but looked better than it tasted. It wasn’t bad but nothing special.
I ordered Lasagna $18* which was just okay while Allen had the Ribeye Con Gorgonzola E Tartufo $36*. He said the steak was very tender but he didn’t care for the topping so scraped most of it off. Again the plate was served looking beautiful
In addition, he had a diet Pepsi $3.50 so with tax added after the 50% off promotion our check came to $39.87 plus a $15 tip bringing the check to $54.87 to $24+ each for lunch.

* We were there for lunch–about 1 PM and though they advertise 50% off for lunch and dinner we were given the dinner menu–the appetizer was $2 more than the lunch menu as shown on their web page as was the Lasagna and the steak wasn’t on the lunch menu.

I have sort of gotten used to sticker shock seeing restaurant menu prices
but if you are advertising something I would suggest changing your web page and just say 50% off the menu all day 11 AM to 11 PM. Also, this is the second restaurant in 2 days that I have seen “Pay with cash and save” printed on the check, assuming they will charge the customer what the credit cards charge the business but there wasn’t a charge added on either restaurant check.

Bottom line: the service was fine, the dishes presented nicely but the food was just okay and at regular prices plus tip would have come to $92 for lunch  
which is too high.

Eating lunch out Thursdays and Fridays   1 comment


It is no secret that I love eating in ‘fine’ restaurants but with inflation and little money I can only afford those places once or twice a month not to mention restaurants prices are going through the roof! It is not easy to find a full service restaurant for lunch less than $20 per person—and I am not a drinker!
Most restaurants today are somewhere between full service and fast food and though I prefer the former I do go to many of those ‘in-between’ places also known as fast casual! You place your order at a counter, in most cases get your own beverages, and in some you pick up your orders or someone will bring them to your table.

Though some people (I am NOT mentioning names, but you know who you are!) sneer at the fast casual restaurants I have found two I like with one being Arbey’s as they have a Reuben sandwich that while not quite like a NY deli Reuben is excellent and for $9.84 you get the sandwich, fries and a soda. In many cases you will get coupons once a month in your ‘junk mail’ that offer up to 6 Reubens for $6 each and, yes, I have become a coupon clipper!

One full service family restaurant that I like is IHOP, especially for their omelets and side of pancakes. Recently they introduced some new omelets and I had the cheeseburger omelet ($11.49) that, yes, has all the makings of a cheeseburger minus the bun, in omelet style. It was HUGE and good except next time I would tell them to not put on the mustard and/or ketchup! Throw in the pancakes and you have a MEAL!

When I want wings—not I am not talking about those phony chicken strips sold as wings–I will usually go to the Wilton Wings full service restaurant where they have a daily special of 10 chicken wings in a choice of 5 different sauces and fries for $13.79 and they are good!It’s no secret I like trying new places and one that opened recently was the Tropical Smoothie Cafe, though it is more of a fast casual place than a cafe. There was only two other people when we walked in by the time we left there were 14 people waiting for their orders and we eat a late lunch. There were only 2 people working with one taking the orders and making the smoothies while the other was doing the cooking!

I asked the order taker for her recommendation and to be honest here it is 4 days later and I don’t remember what it was except it was small and expensive which is okay if only it was good!

Last, but not least, I got a batch of ‘buy one get one free’ Baskin Robbins coupons and just a few doors down from the cafe is a combination DD (used to be Dunkin Donuts!) and Baskin Robbins sharing a store with each on one side. One time we went for a one scoop sundae and after the Tropical Cafe we went for 3 scoops of ice cream in a cup. The latter cost $7.95 for both which, with what ice cream costs today, was a good deal.

A few restaurants we go to quite often including full service, fast casual and fast food places are: The Quarterdeck, JMarks, Big Louie’s, Tequila Sunrise, Subways, Jalisco, among others.

Now starts my search for a 4-5 star restaurant for my 22nd birthday on Thursday, February 29, 2024!!

The Outback Restaurant Review   1 comment

I have been eating at this steakhouse for a number of years and have never had a problem. I love cheeseburgers but have never thought of ordering one here. We were going to the Quarterdeck for just that but because of rain the outside dining area was closed and there was a waiting line and I’m not one to wait on line to eat!
I know Allen likes the Filet Mignon at the Outback I suggested we go there.
No problem being seated right away and I reminded Allen to tell the server to not put any spices on his Filet.
I was going to order a cheeseburger but I made a mistake–I looked at an auxiliary menu and saw the Kingsland Pasta, a Steak and Shrimp special ($19.99) on pasta with Alfredo sauce and I forgot the cheeseburger—again! (Sorry but I ate most of the shrimp on the plate before I took the picture! LOL)
Allen was satisfied with his Filet (8 oz. $26.49)—whether they just didn’t add any more spices or just scrapped off what was on there didn’t matter.
The only complaint I had was with the server who was at the end of his shift and left before we were finished and the lady who took over for him made up for his ‘let me get out of here’ attitude.
Oh yes, they changed their rewards system but to me, that was always, and still is, just a bonus.
The check was about $30 each for lunch which is quite high but we know prices are always a bit higher than other chain steakhouses.
PS How can I not investigate this!!!
https://www.eatthis.com/best-carrot-cake-every-state/

Tipico Cafe Restaurant Review April 2022   Leave a comment

Last I was here was in August 2021 and I really don’t know why except we discovered Jalisco and up until then Tequila Sunrise was my favorite Mexican restaurant which replaced Carlos and Pepe’s after they redid it. Regarding the taste and quality of food both Jalisco and Tequila Sunrise are equal with the latter having an edge always running a special of buy one, get one free for lunch and dinner (see localflavor.com) and the former being right across the street from Winn Dixie where we go shopping every Thursday.

Basically we have been ignoring the Tipico Cafe though the few times I was there the food (and prices) were good so I suggested we go there for a change. The 4 window booths were taken—ah, if all restaurants had all tables by booths but they don’t so we sat further in the restaurant which wasn’t a problem. The prices were a bit higher like the special lunch Allen ordered—the Ropa Vieja had only gone up 50 cents which was more than reasonable. I ordered the Masas de Puerco which, sadly, was almost inedible though instead of returning it I ate it. (My bad!)

The server, only one, did a good job handling the 6 parties plus a to go order, the restaurant was clean but looks like we will go back to alternating between Jalisco and Tequila Sunrise, possibly giving Tipico another go in a year.

Miyako Buffet & Sushi Restaurant Review Pompano, Florida   Leave a comment

Upfront I have to tell you I am not a sushi lover (though they have 2-3 cooked shrimp dishes in the sushi section) so I really can’t say anything about it. I did try a vegetable sushi and after one bite that was it.

I am a lover of all other food and I went to town.  Yes, large peel ‘n eat them shrimp, chicken wings, oysters on the half shell, mussels, mussels and more mussels, fried shrimp, popcorn shrimp—if I continued to tell you what I ate that would be the whole review! :O) (If you want to know I have 19 pictures to show you of just what I ate!)

Most of the hot food was hot and the cold food was cold but the pasta dishes weren’t and a couple of the other dishes I wouldn’t have again. I found the hibachi foods really in sad shape–the meat should be cooked fresh not just laying there. (I am not even sure if it was beef or ?????)

The desserts are very varied and, mostly good, ranging from ice cream to chocolate cookies to many different pastries.

I gave it 4 stars because there were a couple of negatives ranging from the hibachi to missteps in service (as far as I was concerned, but that’s me!) though our server was very pleasant and good at replenishing drinks. I, personally, would like a variety of clean forks for the many varied foods without having to ask for them, along with a bowl to put all the mussel, oyster and clam shells.

All in all, I would recommend it and I heard a lot of good comments from the sushi lovers around me.

There are COVID rules all around but most customers ignored them. The staff (except for the host/hostess & cashier, and many of those refilling empty food pans) mainly the servers wore masks and no one that I observed—staff and customers–observed the 6 feet apart rule.


Posted April 2, 2022 by greatmartin in RESTAURANT REVIEWS FORT LAUDERDALE

Review: Broad Shoulders Sandwiches Restaurant   Leave a comment

These are my own personal preferences! If lunch is going to cost me $30+ I want full service. I have nothing against fast food, standing at a counter with a menu in my hand or up on the wall and deciding what I want and standing there paying and then having to get the food, though here Cherry brought the food to our table (and took the order, dealt with the credit card, had to go to the any time someone left to close it.)Don’t get me wrong–Cherry did an excellent job but, sadly, the only thing she didn’t do was cook the food!
We had a bowl of Shrimp & Sweet corn chowder and a bowl of Chicken & Andouille ($8 each) and both were excellent (though served without crackers, a roll or bread) so we were really looking forward to our main courses, especially the Rueben sandwich ($18) which they are ‘known’ for and the Shrimp Po’Boy ($15), deciding to share.
Where to start? The corned beef was almost non-existent and was overcooked on the grill and how do you make a Po’Boy tasteless as this one was. Okay, we are in a high inflation period but even then at their prices, the sandwiches are served without a side of any kind but you can pay an extra $5 for coleslaw or potato salad and $6 for macaroni and cheese or baked beans.
Yes, menu prices everywhere are shocking but with one soda (I always drink water) plus tax, the check came to $55.10 and, of course, a tip jar (which I don’t think is fair to Cherry but that’s another post!)
There are too many delis that serve Reubens that are way much better than the one we got and give food service.
I would suggest IF you are going there have the soup and maybe, one of the sandwiches recommended in other reviews. I really hate to be negative but I’m not going back and I will be surprised if they are still in business a year or two from now!And, pardon the pun, but you don’t need broad shoulders to lift the sandwiches! (If that’s even the reason for the name of the restaurant!)

Posted March 26, 2022 by greatmartin in RESTAURANT REVIEWS FORT LAUDERDALE

Restaurants   1 comment


It is no secret that I LOVE food plus eating out and if I could I would eat out 3 meals a day 365 (366 Leap Year) days a year.  I am not a snob when I eat out and can just as easily eat at a fast food place as I can eat at a 5 star restaurant. I have favorite restaurants in each category but COVID-16 knocked out quite a few though new ones are coming along every day.

An irony involved with me and restaurants is that I don’t have a good record of restaurants staying opened after I have celebrated my Leap Year there!!  In 2020 when I turned 21 I invited my guests for dinner at the Nabu American Fusion buffet and though no one got sick because of the virus it still was one of the first to close for good! Sweet Tomatoes, The ZanZbar on Los Olas, the Marrott Marina hotel restaurant and The Ark all shut their doors while only Cafe Vico has improved by opening another restaurant! I am now starting my hunt for my Leap Year party restaurant on February 29, 2024, so I am making sure not to mention any of those places when I inquire about booking my party at a new place.

I, accidentally, found a gem of a restaurant that for 2 decades I have passed by without taking notice of until they got an eye-catching marque and since then I have been eating at the Fredo’s Lebanese restaurant known for their kebobs, slowly working down the lunch menu with the 15 specials. Also, the Jalisco Mexican restaurant, right across from Winn-Dixie where I have been shopping the last 21 years caught my eye and I have found a few new dishes there so added it to the Tequila Sunrise and Tipico restaurants when I want south of the border food.

There are a few restaurants I go to for specific items such as the Quarterdeck is my go to for Jambalaya and the IHOP for a cheese omelet with a short stack, the Outback for cheeseburgers not to forget Subways for a turkey hero and, yes, The Cheesecake Factory for cheesecake.

I’m jumping ahead of myself as I am going to talk about restaurants for particular items in another post! Not to forget restaurants I make sure out of town guests go to for pizza or seafood or pasta—now if I only can find a restaurant that serves prime rib on the bone since the one I loved has gone out of business, the second one to do that, where I didn’t have to get a bank loan for dinner.

That is something else I have noticed as a result of the epidemic–restaurant prices have gone sky high! Whereas before a lunch in a full service with linen tablecloths cost about $10-12 now it is about $20 plus tax and tip!!

Ferdo’s Grill–Lebanese Restaurant–Fort Lauderdale   Leave a comment

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First and foremost I could kick myself for passing this gem of a restaurant for so many years! Being in a nondescript shopping strip I’ll use that as my excuse for not giving it a try!

From walking in the door with a little nook on the right side all I can think of is the word ‘charm’ and that includes the hostess and the server. They greeted us with smiles and upon entering the main dining room I broke out in a smile for no reason except—yep, there’s that word again–it radiates charm with booths on the left, round tables down the center and square tables on the left.

Our server Julio, with a weird sense of humor like mine, obviously a professional old fashioned waiter, couldn’t had made our first time more comfortable and welcoming.I could go on talking about the chandeliers and their delightful trimming, the green lit ceiling, etc., but let’s get to the food. As soon as we sat down Julio put a dish of warm pita triangles on the table and handed us the menus pointing out the separate lunch menu with 15 items.

The items ranged in price from $12.99 to $22.99 with selections of salads, sandwiches and platters with the latter including hummus, rice, tossed salad, a thimble size of garlic butter (which next time I will ask for to put on the pita triangles) and the main dish plus Iced Tea or American coffee is included. I ordered the shrimp platter which is served with 5 good sized shrimp in a light, tasty sauce. (A minor complaint–it wasn’t served on a skewer! You’ll understand when you see their marque!)

Excellent service, excellent food in a charming atmosphere–can’t wait to try the other 14 items on the menu and that is before tackling the dinner menu which I didn’t even look at!

Posted September 11, 2021 by greatmartin in RESTAURANT REVIEWS FORT LAUDERDALE

Kraft Deli & Bistro review   Leave a comment


First and foremost, most important to me, Woody, our server, was excellent.

The decor seems uncompleted but is bright and inviting.

Parking can be a problem as the meters in front are not working correctly and the parking on the south side, without meters, is usually full. There is a free parking lot in the back of the restaurant but when we arrived it was flooded.

We were there at lunchtime and I don’t know if they offer the dinner menu during the afternoon though the to-go menu does state ‘deli hours and bistro hours’. The menu we did see is varied from deli sandwiches to a Cuban sandwich to soups and assorted platters.

We both had the Kraft Bomber sandwich (Pastrami, Corned Beef, Swiss Cheese, Russian dressing, coleslaw, $15.75 each) with a choice of sides being coleslaw, potato salad or macaroni salad and a pickle and, which is rare, we both ordered the same side. Allen had a diet soda ($2.75) while I stuck to water.

The macaroni was dry but, even more important, served in a small cup, which resulted in it winding up all over the under-platter it was served on. It should either be served in a bigger monkey dish and/or, even better, with a spoon.The filling of the sandwich was excellent but disappointing was the very hard crust on the rye bread.

With tax and tip lunch ran a little more than $20 each.

Posted July 15, 2021 by greatmartin in RESTAURANT REVIEWS FORT LAUDERDALE

Empire Pizza Cafe plus comparisons   Leave a comment


Coming out of CVS and it being lunchtime plus I like trying new places we decided to give this place a try being it was right next door.

Entering the ‘restaurant’ the feel, look and layout were negative and the lack of response from 3 people behind the counter was nil!$32 for a pizza with 3 toppings (and 2 sodas) served in a box with paper plates, plastic forks and only interaction with ‘staff’ is giving order and picking it up. Only 3 size pizza choices: individual or large with the former too small and the latter too big for just 2 people for lunch or by the slice and the slices in the showcase were very unappetizing!

Comparison, for example, with Big Louie’s where we paid $21.55 for a medium-sized pizza, 4 slices each, including 5 toppings, plus 2 sodas and full service including dishes, real utensils and glasses plus a $5 tip!

Sorry but nothing positive to say about the Empire Pizza Cafe!

Another comparison–the next day we went to the Quarterdeck–Allen had the Jambalaya ($17) and I the All American Burger ($14) with complete service and with tip & tax check came to $40.Service, ambiance, food at both Big Louie’s & The Quarterdeck well worth the money PLUS I got a free dinner plate size freezbee at The Quarterdeck—hey it was the 4th of July weekend!!

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