Best Restaurant When Someone Else Is Paying - 2007
Chops Lobster Bar
Readers' Choice: Jackson's Steak House
You're not the type to take undue advantage of your expense account, but corporate is flying in to evaluate your department, and you'd like to take the CEO somewhere she'll feel very, very comfortable. You and the boss will slide into Chops the way a chunk of flash-fried Australian lobster tail (market price) slides into a bowl of drawn butter with barely a ripple. The first foray of this Atlanta steak and seafood mainstay into South Florida territory is already a frantic hit with the kinds of people who want to impress somebody else. Here, deals are sealed (be it a marriage proposal or a merger), seductions are furthered, and excellent impressions are made over a dozen coldwater oysters from two coasts ($24), an iced shellfish tower ($56 for a whole main lobster, gulf shrimp, Alaska red king crab, and oysters of your choice), tenderloin steak tartare prepared tableside ($14), prime aged bone-in steaks ($38 for a 22-ounce rib eye, $48 for a porterhouse for two), and a surf and turf of eight ounces of filet mignon with a quarter pound of king crab meat ($45). The signature Gold Digger cocktail ($11) seems particularly apropos of this Boca location: vodka, creme de cassis, lemon juice, and Grand Marnier-soaked raspberries finished with a splash of champagne. A tiled, barrel-vaulted back room reminiscent of Grand Central and rose-red leather banquettes in the bar make this a setting worthy of a hefty salary raise. Don't spend it all in one place.