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  • Café Martorano

    Best Restaurant in Broward

    Café Martorano

    Movie pitch: Based on a true story. In a tropical American city long known as party central for spring breakers, the population begins to suffer disturbing nightmares. As neighbors compare notes, they're stunned to learn that their midnight visions are identical — they dream they're chasing a gigantic meatball along Oakland Park Boulevard. As days pass, the citizens are overcome… More >>
  • Best Place to Dine With Gramps

    New York Prime

    Whatever kind of grandpa you got, New York Prime will fix him right up. Maybe he was a freckled kid during World War II, raised on Trumanburgers and scarred by the memory of meat-rationing stamps — won't he get a kick out of this million-dollar question: "How would you like that double-rib veal chop cooked, sir?" Say he's a guy… More >>
  • Best Food Activist

    Diane Campion of Slow Foods Glades to Coast

    Slow Food Glades to Coast leader Diane Campion has to keep a lot of balls in the air, but she makes juggling Florida eggplants, oranges, and rounds of fresh mozzarella look like a breeze. Apart from a full-time job as a sales rep for Prime Line Distributors, Campion has organized and hosted the jolliest food events of the year: a… More >>
  • Best Mexican Restaurant

    Zona Fresca

    Over the years, Zona Fresca has won a plethora of New Times Best Of awards, from Best Fish Sandwich (in that case, a fish taco) to Best Place to Eat Everyday. Yet, we've not once given it the Best Mexican Restaurant accolades it deserves. Seriously... for a quick-service joint where you eat off styrofoam plates with plastic utensils, Zona literally… More >>
  • Best Meal for Cheapskates

    Morton's Power Hour

    Five dollars. When was the last time you saw that price on a menu for anything other than a Happy Meal? Just please, wash your face and put on a clean pair of trousers before you head over to Morton's bar for their "power hour" — we don't want them catching on that the hoi polloi is actually showing up… More >>
  • Best Spanish Restaurant

    Café Seville

    Now a quarter-century old, Café Seville is no stranger to our Best Of awards. Forgive what must feel like insistence, but you'd search in vain for another eatery that puts eels, rabbit, and merluza together on one menu. Seville's famous, five-foot-high specials board has achieved the status of local celebrity. And nobody offers those dishes in a warm little room… More >>
  • Best Place to Eat in a Government Building

    Charcuterie Too! - CLOSED

    The food here is as diverse as the books and authors on the shelves. On top of the standard soups, salads, and sandwiches (think Shakespeare), you'll find sizable, scrumptious servings of quiche (Flaubert), torta rustica (Cervantes), and pasta primavera (epic, like Gabriel Garcia Marquez). Depending on the day of the month, you might find meatloaf (Hemingway), picadillo (Junot Diaz), Kashmiri… More >>
  • Best Vegetarian Restaurant

    Sublime

    Start with the crispy cauliflower, which is flash-fried and covered in a sweet chili sauce so scrumptious that it will make you swear off sweet-and-sour chicken. Then order the sublime loaf, a mixture of lentils, brown rice, water chestnuts, and couscous that will convince you that all meatloaves ought to have "meat" in quotes. Hope your dining partner orders the… More >>
  • Best Chinese Restaurant

    Grand Lake Chinese Restaurant

    Think "small plates" are the latest hot topic? A food fad in China can span a millennium: That's roughly how long the Cantonese have been doing the miniature bites and shared morsels that American restaurateurs are all lathered up about lately. Hong Kong trendies call it dim sum, a snack best enjoyed with tea and friends, and based on observations… More >>
  • Best Desserts

    By Word of Mouth

    "Let them eat cake." Marie Antoinette never actually said it, but the phrase was a convenient summation of her aristocratic distance from the fray; she was a lady as pathetically out of touch as a tycoon redecorating his office in the midst of financial implosion. The servers at By Word of Mouth are down with Marie about the substance if… More >>
  • Best Restaurant in Palm Beach

    Café Boulud

    One of the great misconceptions about Café Boulud is that you can't afford it. And that's a shame, because eating here makes you proud to be a Floridian. It's not enough to book your birthday every year — the pleasure in Executive Chef Zach Bell's collaboration with Daniel Boulud derives from the menu's month-to-month fluctuations, from the flavors of produce… More >>
  • Best Expensive Italian Restaurant

    Valentino's Cucina Italiana - CLOSED

    When Giovanni Rocchio cooks, everybody listens: There's the slap of fresh pasta dough, the susurrations of corn being sliced from the cob and of herbs torn by hand, the crackle of sparks from a wood oven, and the harmonies the whisk makes singing in a copper bowl. Rocchio, who cooked at his parents' Plantation restaurant as a teen and then… More >>
  • Best Greek Restaurant

    Ouzo Blue

    The dance of the seven veils makes a fine diversion, but no belly-wobbling, sphinx-eyed siren can stop a hungry stomach from staging its own entertainment: Sometimes you really want spectacular spanikopita rather than smashed crockery and drop-dead dolmades instead of dancing dames. Ouzo Blue provides the sustenance to maintain your mood with classic Greek dishes straight out of Chef Otis… More >>
  • Best Pre-Dinner Cocktails

    Forte Martini Bar and Restaurant - CLOSED

    Don't call Joshua Liberman a "bartender." Even "mixologist" is too lame a term for the guy who's been putting together the drinks at Forte — potent mixers made from eccentric liquors, seasonal fruits, and surreal decorative elements. He's the "wizard of wet," "prince of the pie-eyed," "most exalted expert of the inebriated." It just can't get any better than this:… More >>
  • Best Fast Food

    Jack's Old Fashion Hamburger House

    There was a time in this country when fast food meant something other than overprocessed, frozen, globally distributed chunks of sodium (that should probably not be called "food"). The old concept was a brilliant one: fresh, hot food for the working folks who put in long hours and didn't have time to make dinner, served by clean-cut young Americans in… More >>
  • Best Deli

    My Market & Deli

    When people spend too long in South Florida, they get sandwich spoiled. They have no idea how sandwich rich this region is, how good most of the little delis really are. The crowds that pack into the back of this unassuming corner store are never ungrateful, though. The sandwiches are just too good, too loaded with delicious cheeses and meats,… More >>
  • Best Romantic Restaurant

    Christine's Restaurant and Jazz Bar

    If you're looking for the best place to take someone when you really need to get laid, there are plenty of bars by the beach with three-for-one drink specials. And if you're looking for dinner with an amazing view of the skyline or the water, this isn't your place either. What you get here is a sophisticated romance — a… More >>
  • Best Steak House

    Chima Brazilian Steakhouse

    You know this is an indulgence of the most gluttonous sort. You know you shouldn't go often. But you're smart about it; you try to go with different people most of the time. You coyly suggest it on birthdays and anniversaries — yours and theirs. Just driving by, smelling the steaks, triggers some sort of primitive desire to chew meat.… More >>
  • Best Restaurant for Out-of-Towners

    El Rey de Pescado at the Swap Shop - CLOSED

    South Florida is among the most culturally diverse pieces of land on the North American continent. It's food that brings cultures together here, and it happens regularly at El Rey de Pescado — a place that looks, smells, and sounds like a Third World food market in the very best way. In the middle of the produce tent at Fort… More >>
  • Marumi Sushi

    Best Japanese Restaurant

    Marumi Sushi

    Marumi Sushi doesn't look like much from the outside — just your generic strip-mall eatery with a few Asian-looking frills. But the nondescript décor is no sign of mediocrity. Here, it's an indicator of a single-minded devotion to food. Owner/chefs Tetsu-San and Teru-San serve a nightly menu of Japanese (and some Korean) food unlike any in Broward County. At Marumi,… More >>
  • Best Cheese Steak

    Mr. Nick's Sub Shoppe

    Cheese steaks are one of those foods that incite furious debate, turning friends into enemies and enemies into nemeses. Folks hailing from Philadelphia claim that only sandwiches adhering to a strict code of ethics even earn the right to be labeled as such. And shouldn't they have the right? Cheese steaks have been bastardized throughout the years, turned into crappy… More >>
  • Best Falafel

    Greek Express

    Falafel platters and pitas are not usually something you order as a main course at a swanky restaurant. The best falafel dishes are most often found at "faster" food eateries where the food is fresh but simple. Greek Express, located in the midst of the cheesy tourist shops that dominate the west side of the Fort Lauderdale Strip, provides a… More >>
  • Best New Restaurant in Palm Beach

    Dolce de Palma - CLOSED

    Even now that Dolce de Palma has been overrun by local hungries, anybody pulling up to this rubble-strewn parking lot behind railroad tracks in an old warehouse district is going to feel like he's making a personal discovery. Dolce has an intriguing out-of-the-way-ness and a young chef in Anthony DePalma who likes to keep stirring the broth. This little orange… More >>
  • Best Sandwiches

    LaSpada's Original Hoagies

    Throughout human history, countless innovations have changed the way we conduct our lives: Indoor plumbing. Sticky notes. MTV. But innovations in the realm of food, especially in something as common as sandwiches, are a rarer breed. This is why LaSpada's Original Hoagies, a Broward institution that has been flinging lunch meat since 1973, should be praised for a practice that… More >>
  • Best Barbecue

    Various BBQ joints

    South Florida isn't a wasteland for quality 'cue, as some purists would have you believe. But we do have the unfortunate affliction of not having one place that sets the bar for the rest. Which is why New Times' Best Barbecue category will, this year, not go to one joint but several, each for different reasons. First up, the 50-year-old… More >>
  • Best Taco

    Tacos al Carbon

    Not only does Tacos al Carbon serve authentic Mexican soul food good enough to grace the table of any proud abuelita; it's also open 24 hours a day, meaning that sweet release never has to wait. Tacos al Carbon spares no parts, crafting more than a dozen varieties of tacos out of succulent lengua (beef tongue), slow-stewed tripa (beef stomach),… More >>
  • Best Restaurant Décor

    Zed451 - CLOSED

    Maybe you have a weakness for guitar players. Or gangsters. Or celebrity chefs. But contemplating architect Chris Smith's design for Zed451 might just get you hooked on dudes who do singular things with vaulted ceilings, glass panels, and reflecting pools — for here is a space so full of magic and mystery that it's calculated to make any girl go… More >>
  • Best Appetizer

    Grilled Langoustines at Bova Prime

    They look so creepy that most folks won't touch 'em, but that's just fine — more for us! A langoustine looks like a cross between a spider and a shrimp that deep down wants to be a lobster — could be it's the animal that inspired T.S. Eliot to imagine a "pair of ragged claws scuttling across the floors of… More >>
  • Best Chain Restaurant

    Char-Hut

    Proposal: Require any chain restaurant applying for a Florida operating license to complete a 16-week course mastering the Char-Hut methodology. This little five-store Florida franchise, which opened its first outlet in 1976 to sell char-grilled burgers, onion rings, and hot dogs, is doing so many things right that it's easy to lose track. It serves nutritious food at low prices… More >>
  • Morimoto

    Best Restaurant When Someone Else Is Paying

    Morimoto

    The only bad news about Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto's opening a sushi bar inside the beautiful Boca Raton Resort & Club is that you can't actually get in. Correction: You can get in, provided you are (A) a resort member, (B) a paying guest at the hotel, or (C) someone with wealthy and influential friends. Since options A and B… More >>
  • Best Restaurant to Close in the Past 12 Months

    Capri Blu - CLOSED

    Amadeo and Gracie Tasca kept their balance aboard the pitching vessel of downtown West Palm Beach while their contemporaries piled into lifeboats and fled. They kept it up for ten years, sending out plate after plate of handmade pasta, of sauces made from tomatoes they handpicked themselves on local farms, of ethereal tiramisu and imported bronzino. They invited tenors and… More >>
  • Best Cheap Lunch

    Sushi 1

    Understand that Sushi 1 takeout is my fix for the day, so don't catch me mid-slurp and say "What's that?" as you stare at my bowl of vegetable udon — chunky white noodles with a medley of veggies ($4.20). There's a giant picture menu on the wall behind me — why don't you at least try to go back and… More >>
  • Best New Restaurant in Broward

    Sage Oyster Bar - CLOSED

    Maybe it takes an old hand to spin something entirely new out of two thoroughly timeworn restaurant tropes: the raw bar and the French bistro. Chef Laurent Tasic, having perfected the bistro genre with his country-quaint Fort Lauderdale Sage Café, has set his Hollywood vessel afloat in a chic, ultramarine landscape, incorporating such varied terrain — a backlit bar, leaping… More >>
  • Best Outdoor Dining

    Downtowner Saloon

    You've exited the jailhouse, and with just a few steps in the throwaway sandals so kindly provided, you've crossed the street — into the Downtowner Saloon's lot. Because that insufferable block of cement has just vanished from view, dine outside and relish the backdrop of downtown's unadulterated skyline. This coveted seat is far removed from the cold metal seats of… More >>
  • Best Bakery

    House of Sweets

    Two pretty, perky girls as cute as '50s pinups, Michelle Parparian and Amanda Watkins, have transformed a 1920s Florida cottage into a vintage clothing store with a cupcakery in the tiny rear kitchen — a kitchen known to turn out a thousand cupcakes at a pop for local events. But they're not too busy stocking bridal showers and tea parties… More >>
  • Best Late-Night Dining

    Blue Boar Tavern

    A scrawled sign outside the Blue Boar advises that bare feet and tank tops are forbidden after 8 p.m. ("Dress Code Enforced 7 Days!"). But once you've got your sandals and T-shirt on, this high hog is serious about late-night hunger management. Blue Boar purveys homemade chicken noodle soup, beef quesadillas, char-grilled cheeseburgers, garbage fries, and a full lineup of… More >>
  • Best Place to Cure a Hangover

    Testa's Palm Beach

    Any restaurant worthy of your hangover must meet strict standards. (1) No dress code. A pair of jeans, landscaped with spilled beer and cigarette burn holes, will work just fine. Sunglasses are de rigueur. And obviously, you're not getting anywhere near a razor. (2) No crowds. Humans are exceptionally ugly, noisy, and smelly when you're nursing the brown bottle flu.… More >>
  • Best Hot Dog

    Palm Beach Grill

    In 1939, Eleanor Roosevelt took a lot of flak for her plan to entertain the visiting king and queen of England with a picnic of hot dogs. The king, it turned out, was so smitten with the "delightful hot dog sandwich" that he begged for another one. Lately, the dog is having its day again — the American frankfurter has… More >>
  • Best Bar Food

    Havana Hideout

    Tiki-tacky Havana Hideout is what most South Florida dining looked like 30 years ago — a bar under open air and thatch, plus a minuscule, shadowy mouse hole indoors. Before we got gentrified and supersized, before the chains and celeb chefs from California and New York found out we were hoarding paradise, any Floridian could follow the path pounded smooth… More >>
  • Best Chicken Wings

    Hurricane Grill & Wings - CLOSED

    Chicken wings want to be taken seriously. They want the opportunity to be dressed in 30 varieties of flavor. Hot, medium, or mild is so blasé. There's nothing like putting on a new suit: teriyaki glaze and raspberry sauce when you're feeling mild and sweet, mango BBQ and lemon pepper glaze when you want to step it up a notch,… More >>
  • Best Comfort Food

    Lola's on Harrison

    Chef Michael Wagner knows there's more to American classics than chicken wings and turkey dinners. There are potatoes, for instance. And Coke. But what he does with corn dogs and hamburger meat goes well beyond anything your mama would recognize from her recipe-card file: Potato skins at Lola's come in hues of purple, topped with crème fraîche, bacon bits, and… More >>
  • Best Restaurant for Hotties

    China Grill - CLOSED

    Rich, salty, sweet, hot — and we're not talking about the dumplings. Unless "dumpling" is your pet term for the ladies crowding the bar most nights at China Grill, decked in their shiniest frippery and pointiest heels. They've gravitated here since the day mega-restaurateur Jeffrey Chodorow threw open the doors of his first Fort Lauderdale pan-Asian eatery: skittering from bar… More >>
  • Best Restaurant to Close the Deal

    Casa D'Angelo

    The third date is the tiebreaker; if you flub this one, you're gonna find yourself back at the laptop flipping through JDate listings. The long-running and beloved Casa D'Angelo can help get you over the hump, if you'll pardon the pun — they've been cementing together fragile relationships with a mixture of ricotta cheese and marinara sauce for more than… More >>
  • Dean James Max at 3030 Ocean Restaurant

    Best Chef

    Dean James Max at 3030 Ocean Restaurant

    Dean Max plunges into his projects like a surfer making for epic waters. Now in his 40s, he still looks like the farm kid and Treasure Coast wave hound who hauled vegetable crates for his father's produce business. Max moved into the kitchens at 3030 Ocean in 2000 and did something nobody thought possible: He persuaded his corporate overlords at… More >>
  • Best Wine Deal

    Hi-Life Café - CLOSED

    Somehow, the era of the $25 or $30 bottle of wine with dinner feels so distant, it might as well have been our Stone Age ancestors who were extracting corks from the Beaujolais with hand-carved flint tools. Restaurant wine has rocketed out of reach for regular people: Now we're guzzling a hurried glass at home before heading out. But that's… More >>
  • Best Reason to Eat Your Veggies

    Darrin and Jodi Swank of Swank Farms

    Darrin and Jodi Swankhave been doing for vegetables what Isaac Mizrahi did for high fashion when he partnered with Target: making great taste accessible to us all. This young couple, who decided to become farmers practically on a whim, produce hydroponic greens and vegetables on their Loxahatchee farm almost single-handedly — gorgeous produce that's earned the loyalty of South Florida's… More >>
  • Best French Fries

    The Cove Restaurant and Marina

    Most waterfront restaurants in Broward County are good for oysters and other bounties of the sea, but French fries? Usually you'll get your standard fries to accompany a grouper sandwich, and you're happy if they are at least somewhat warm and your squeeze container of ketchup isn't empty. Ho-hum. Not at the Cove. That large and sprawling restaurant on the… More >>
  • Best Drive-Through Coffee

    Expresso

    At Starbucks, customers have to learn another language just to order a large cup of coffee ("You mean a venti?"). To escape the cold, annoying state of the corporate coffee­house, run in the opposite direction — toward Expresso. This funky little drive-through joint is not so much a coffee shop as a coffee shack, a tiny wooden house-like building where… More >>
  • Best Coffeehouse

    Coffee District

    What's that sound coming from the Coffee District? It's customers arguing like a couple of guys from a classic Reese's commercial: "Hey! You got your wine bar in my coffee shop!" Despite being touted as a coffee joint, the district is a hybrid hangout that actually offers more kinds of beer than coffee — though there are plenty flavors of… More >>
  • Best Salad

    The Salad Bowl

    Remember the nerdy librarian lady in the old TV commercials for Cinnaburst gum? How she cowered in terror when she saw "flavor crystals" on a stick of gum? "There's... just... so... many of them!" She gasped, unable to handle even the idea of that kind of explosion of taste. That's how you'll feel when you open the menu at the… More >>
  • Best Breakfast

    Cypress Nook

    It had been awhile since the dental hygienist's wife had harped on and on about anything, but now she wanted a German breakfast. So Saturday morning, he brought her to Cypress Nook in Pompano Beach, a place where his American-loving palette could also be satisfied. They sat in the quaint cottage at one of the 30 or so seats available… More >>
  • Best Breakfast Buffet

    Pier Top Lounge at the Hyatt Regency Pier 66

    To discover a truly dazzling buffet, you have to go to the heavens, and on Sundays, the glass elevator at Pier 66 takes you there. Pier Top is on the 18th-floor, rotating observation deck of the iconic Hyatt Regency Pier 66. Call it "brunch" if you like, but this is really a celebration of all three meals. The restaurant opens… More >>
  • Best Biscuits

    Shawn & Nick's Courtyard Cafe

    It was a long, jubilant night with a crazy crowd. Let's face it, you got drunk — again. And as your head begins to clear, you want something different. Not late-night tacos. Not pizza, sandwiches, or waffles. Certainly not the drive-through you had a few times. (You always regretted that later.) No, you want... biscuits! Flaky, tender, warm, golden, soft… More >>
  • Best Inappropriately Named Restaurant

    Vinny's All Day Café

    Look, this place has incredible chopped salads, chock-full of meats, cheeses, fresh romaine lettuce, peppers, colorful veggies, and tangy original sauces. You can even get your "salad" in a huge, tightly rolled wrap too big to finish in one sitting. The prices are reasonable, and the service is great. But there's a problem: The fun stops and the doors close… More >>
  • Paula DaSilva, 3030 Ocean chef de cuisine

    Best Celebrity Chef

    Paula DaSilva, 3030 Ocean chef de cuisine

    You could have knocked thousands of Florida Hell's Kitchen fanatics over with a pastry brush when 3030 Ocean chef de cuisine Paula daSilva was picked to be one of 16 contestants on this season's show — the mad reality program in which aspiring young chefs brave the wrath of Scottish sadist Gordon Ramsey. At first, the diminutive DaSilva hardly stood… More >>
  • Best Crepe

    La Bonne Crepe

    Some people might consider crepes to be glorified pancakes or quesadillas, but at La Bonne Crepe on Las Olas, flat circles of batter are transformed into light and fluffy packaging for cheese, meat, seafood, scrambled eggs, vegetables, and fruit — all cooked to savory or sweet perfection. The restaurant's signature vegetarian crepe includes broccoli, spinach, mushrooms, asparagus, and ratatouille, all… More >>
  • Best Gelato

    Paciugo

    True Italian gelato is not ice cream; it is richer and creamier and has a velvety texture that melts in your mouth. Paciugo knows this, and it shows. The amaretto chocolate chip, for instance, has a rich almond-cookie flavor that washes over the tongue and lingers for a couple of seconds before it's augmented with a hint of dark chocolate.… More >>
  • Best Pizza

    Mauro's Gourmet Pizza and Pasta

    The sign on the wall at Mauro's says, "NO KNIVES, NO FORKS, NO CUPS, NO ICE, NO CHEESE, NO PARMESAN, DON'T ASK," and it's translated into Spanish just so everyone gets the message. Other signs warn patrons "Prices are subject to change instantly" and "If you are rude, impatient, miserable, or annoying, there will be a $10 charge." Nothing like… More >>
  • Best Inexpensive Italian Restaurant

    Carolina's Coal Fired Pizza and Pasta - CLOSED

    The Roman gods smiled on Delray Beach and dished us up one of their famous mythological hybrids: not a centaur or a satyr but an Italian restaurant set in an old Florida Key West cottage, complete with tin roof and breeze-ruffled, wraparound porch. Let's call this amazing chimera a trattorishack. The scent of night-blooming jasmine through open windows mingles with… More >>
  • Best Neighborhood Bistro

    Tryst

    Ben Franklin said: "Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy." If so, God's love foams eternal from the brimming imaginations of longtime South Florida restaurateurs Rodney Mayo and Scott Frielich. At their new Tryst, they've teamed up with next-door neighbors from 32 East and Delux to debut a beer-centric bistro, adding hops to their… More >>
  • Best Hamburger

    Big Bear Brewing Co.

    If there's one food that pairs best with beer, it's a good burger. This must be why Big Bear, an independently owned and operated brewpub in Broward's western annex, puts as much thought into its stellar burgers as it does into its award-winning suds. Each of the half-inch-thick patties is made from ground-daily chuck and griddle-cooked for the perfect amount… More >>

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