5. Lauren DeShields

Market 17, 1850 SE 17th St., Fort Lauderdale. Call 954-835-5507, or visit market17.net.

One of the leading ladies of the Fort Lauderdale culinary scene, this Florida native churns out an always-changing menu full of as many local products as she can get her hands on. From grilled locally caught grouper with crispy mofongo cakes, farm zucchini, sautéed kale, pickled pearl onions, and chimichurri sauce to pan-roasted pork tenderloin with brown-butter corn bread, mustard greens, broccolini, rutabaga, rainbow carrots, and mustard demi and everything in between, DeShields focuses on sourcing the highest-quality ingredients possible and treating them with the utmost respect. It's treatment like that that earned her a spot on our Tastemakers list — it's no wonder she's one of the best.

Fulvio Sardelli, a staple on the scene.
Fulvio Sardelli, a staple on the scene.

4. Chris Miracolo

S3, 505 N. Fort Lauderdale Beach Blvd., Fort Lauderdale. Call 954-523-7873, or visit s3restaurant.com.

Recently back in Fort Lauderdale after a long stint opening Max's Harvest in Delray Beach, Miracolo has been a staple on the South Florida scene since he opened Himmarshee Bar & Grill as a sous chef back in 1997 — after moving around in different positions, he took over the restaurant in 2009. While we've had a strong appreciation for his work all along, it was his tenure at Harvest that put him on the map, earning him New Times' award for Best Palm Beach County Chef in 2012 — up against the heavyweights of "the island" 's world-renowned all-stars. Now he's manning the helm of Fort Lauderdale Beach's new and shiny S3, where he's bringing his global eclectic style — and infamous pork belly — to the tourist-laden strip. And locals are finally making their way to the coast.

3. Steven Zobel

d.b.a./cafe, 2364 N. Federal Highway, Fort Lauderdale. Call 954-565-3392, or visit dba2z.com.

Like half the population of South Florida, Zobel is a born-and-bred New Yorker with cooking skills that show off time well spent in one of the leading culinary centers of the world. After more than two decades running kitchens in the Big Apple, he packed up the fam and moved to South Florida in 2011. Since then, he's made a name for himself locally with his classic technique and wide scope of flavor profiles — ranging from apricot-glazed duck confit with acorn squash crepe and Brussels sprouts to grilled Florida grouper with lemon, soy, and scallions — and his was New Times' pick for Best New Restaurant Broward County in 2013. He's one expat we're ecstatic to find in our midst.

2. Giovanni Rocchio

Valentino Cucina Italiana, 620 S. Federal Highway, Fort Lauderdale. Call 954-523-5767, or visit valentinoscucinaitaliana.com.

Born into an Italian restaurant family, Rocchio developed a passion for food at the ripe old age of 7 while working in the kitchen with his father, Tony, at the original Valentino in Plantation. After taking off to learn techniques and skills at high-end Italian spots in New York and the motherland itself, he came back to South Florida to open his own Valentino in Fort Lauderdale back in 2006 and has been wowing us ever since. After another move a few blocks north and across the street, Rocchio now serves homemade and innovative new Italian fare, ranging from homemade pastas to venison with butternut squash, braised red cabbage, and blueberry to monkfish accompanied by sunchoke, black trumpet mushroom, and crispy shallots. His fare is Italian like you've never had.

1. Paula DaSilva

3030 Ocean, 3030 Holiday Drive, Fort Lauderdale. Call 954-525-4000, or visit 3030ocean.com.

After racking up the awards and accolades as executive chef of 1500 Degrees at the Eden Roc, including Esquire's Best New Restaurants in America in 2011, New Times Broward-Palm Beach's Best Celebrity Chef in 2009, Miami New Times' Tastemakers, and Miami New Times' Best Steak House 2011, DaSilva is back at her old alma mater, and we're all the better for it. She's currently in the process of revamping 3030 into more of a casual, small-plates eatery. It may have hurt when she walked away, but we're just glad to finally get her back to ourselves.

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frankd4 topcommenter

....................................................well at least NICOLE DANNA is on the ball with this article in the donut section:....." 9. Grampa's Bakery and Restaurant Family-owned and -operated since 1957, Grampa's Bakery and Restaurant in Dania Beach has been serving homemade American food for more than 50 years. That includes a near-endless dessert and pastry case, where you can find almost any type of cookie, cake, pie, bread -- and, yes, doughnuts. All baking is done fresh, on the premises daily using old-fashioned equipment and from-scratch mix, just as it's been done since the place opened. To make its doughnuts light and flavorful, Grampa's uses a vegetable-shortening-based oil that gives each -- the yeast raised, especially -- that perfect light-and-fluffy feel."

........sara V WHY NOT just ask who the chef is there instead of advising all those other TOURIST RIP-OFF joints with "celebrity" chefs who are only gonna be around for a while here (until their scam is exposed or they have screwed enough patrons to be black-balled)  ?

frankd4 topcommenter

.....................................................of course sara ventiera must think the tourist easy pickins to be screwed, so encouraging the blind to their financial screwing is part of the process, or else who would care about a $1.6 million dollar BUILDING when discussing FOOD ?

otherwise GUY FIERE endorses GRAMPAs which has plenty of FREE parking, and Tommy as a host,  and a staff of regulars since the last ice age, (i really hope no one goes there so i myself can get a table) and includes GRATIS their AM table offerings of coffee cake pieces which is MORE addictive than crack cocaine (why should the article push FREE stuff - right ?)

frankd4 topcommenter

.......................the problem with any LIST is the BIAS of who compiles it,  and since many if not most who frequent these places are intended to be TOURISTs and VISITORs,  either YELP or ZAGAT or FODORs should be "the deciders" for them - no ?

funny thing is outsiders VOTE for places like LA SPADAs which i guess is the closest thing to having a cult following ft liquordale can provide............................ALL the other providors are either sysco, henry lee, cheney bros supplied OVERpriced and UNDERdelivering tourist traps

as for GUESTs they should also be advised of the local "screw the tourist" mentality extending from the kitchen to include VALET parking and PREDATORY TOWING (try finding a parking place going to SEA (listed in the article) on Commercial Blvd - the entire street is torn up and under construction cutting off almost ever public metered spot so YOU WILL BE tempted to park where you shouldn't and ALL COUNTY TOWING will be on the prowl with their illegal spotters ready for YOU dummies (no mention of THIS tourist trap revenue enhancement in the article)


ludiccrous !, preposterous ! absurd !

that this list would not include Eduardo de San Angel


frankd4 topcommenter

......................BTW this is a RE-HEATed article from OCT 4........which i ignored then as a STALE serving