Opened in 2012 at the foot of the Seventh Avenue Bridge, this cozy neighborhood spot in Sailboat Bend sits behind the Broward Center. Concertgoers mix with locals over well-prepared dishes like Spanish mussels served with chorizo, churrasco chimichurri, and mahi mahi in salsa de coco.
Valentino’s cheaper cousin (and occupying its former space), this warm, neighborhood place offers an array of pizzas (including prosciutto with shaved Parmesan and arugula) as well as other tempting Italian dishes. The eggplant sliced thin, fried and layered like lasagna is a popular item.
Begin with the colossal stone crab claws or homemade meatballs before choosing between lobster and shrimp Fra Diavolo and a 10 oz. barrel-cut filet mignon. Or perhaps you’d prefer apple cider-marinated pork chops. For dessert, there’s vanilla bean crème brulee and chocolate soufflé.
Chef Stefan cooks up chicken Marsala with spätzle, wiener rostbraten, Hungarian goulash and Holstein schnitzel. With the warm décor, and the music, it always feels like Oktoberfest inside. The large, attractive bar next to the dining room is a cozy place to sit with a mug of German beer.
Walking along the Riverwalk, or perhaps sailing down the New River, you may have noticed a new addition to the waterfront standing downhill from the Broward Center for the Performing Arts. The two-story Huizenga Pavilion is part of the center’s $58 million expansion. A private reception area occupies the top floor, while Marti’s New River Bistro fills the ground floor.
Owners of the Pirate Shop and Pirate Bar on Fort Lauderdale Beach, Roberto and Claudia Guerios jumped at the opportunity to pillage, er, purchase the dilapidated property a few years back and have since transformed it into a full-scale pirate’s lair draped with skull-and-crossbones flags and decked out in a decor reminiscent of wooden pirate ships. You’ll find an array of seafood specialties, including sweet and sour shrimp, conch fritters, and herbed chardonnay-shallot mussels.
Chef Dario De Pasquale was born in Battipaglia, Italy, and from a young age developed a love for pizza. Before coming to America he worked as a chef in different parts of Italy including Capaccio, Salerno and along the Amalfi Coast. Menu items at his new locale reflect that experience and include homemade meatballs, capriciosa (tomato sauce, fresh mozzarella, salami, ham, mushrooms, artichokes and olives) and gnocchi alla Sorrentina, as well as a full pizza menu.
Chef and owner Mike Ponluang’s elegant Asian bistro offers large private booths and the finest fusion fare, including sushi and a lunch menu with noodles and bento boxes that’ll lure you back multiple times a week. Lobster Pad Thai is Ponluang’s signature dish, but everything is worth trying here, from Chinese dumplings to Vietnamese fresh rolls, and enormous entrees like pan fried Chilean sea bass with pineapple and red curry.
A popular watering hole for boat crews, this Irish pub offers Irish breakfast (all day), lunch, dinner and late-night fare. Try the fish & chips, corned beef and cabbage, chicken pot pie or Buffalo chicken wings. Then grab a pint.
A lively place to kick back along the New River, the historic Downtowner is a casual bar-restaurant offering live music Thursday and Saturday nights and during Sunday’s blues brunch. This watering hole with a view dishes up wings, burgers, salads, and sandwiches. Specials like Monday’s “rib night” and Tuesday’s “tacos and trivia” attract fun-loving locals aplenty. Wine bottles typically max out at around $30, and there are ample brews available in bottles or on tap.
Located inside the Embassy Suites by Hilton Fort Lauderdale, this chic restaurant and lounge serves food and drinks.
Located west of the Himmarshee bars, this is the place to go for a rustic breakfast, featuring the best pancakes you can find in town. Made with buttermilk, organic flour, sour cream and fresh, free-range eggs, these pancakes come served in a cast-iron pan with Vermont maple syrup. Try the “Mexican Ship Wreck,” a play on huevos rancheros served with oven-roasted yukon gold potatoes or scrumptious cheese grits.
At this modern-day Mexican restaurant located in the heart of downtown, the menu includes everything you want to see on a Mexican eatery menu plus a barbecue pulled quesadilla, a buffalo chicken burrito and – wait for it – Nutella tacos (with strawberries and banana). They also serve up some tasty margaritas and craft cocktails.
Not to be confused with Tex-Mex, a taqueria primarily focuses on tacos themselves. Short rib, prime rib-eye carne asada and other premium cuts of meat are brined, smoked and braised then stuffed into homemade corn masa tortillas for an upscale version of Mexican staples. Did we mention there’d be tequila? TacoCraft has a collection of more than 100 varieties of tequilas — blancos, reposados, anejos, and super anejos — ranging from $8 to $100 per shot.
As the first Fort Lauderdale outpost by James Beard-nominated chef Jose Mendin, Rivertail delivers an incredible culinary experience. The seafood restaurant features outdoor seating with a covered patio overlooking the New River as well as a raw bar and Caribbean décor throughout. Menu items include Bahia-style Brazilian Stew (cod, shrimp, mussels, clams, calamari, dende oil and cashews, served with coconut milk, citrus and cilantro) and Curry Striped Bass (green curry, red curry and aromatic herb salad).