If you're not home for the holidays or simply not in the mood to cook another large-scale meal for all those never-satisfied family and friends, Christmas Day could be a day best spent out on the town.
From West Palm Beach to Fort Lauderdale, restaurants are serving up everything from sushi and sashimi to Turkish delights. Here is a list of restaurants open on Christmas Day. Some serve a buffet brunch, some dole out dinner -- and a few are even open for breakfast.
Palm Beach Gardens and West Palm Beach
What: Sexy. Savvy. Sophisticated. That's how the PGA National Resort & Spa signature restaurant defines its contemporary American cuisine. If that's your type of place, the Ironwood Grille will be serving a four-course, prix-fixe dinner at $55 per plate for adults, and $27.50 for children ages 6-12 (plus tax and gratuity). There will also be a full buffet brunch complete with a carving station in the resort's Bella Lago room. It will feature roasted organic turkey and Angus prime rib. Dessert lovers beware: a full buffet dessert station will also be center stage with a decadent array of tasty pastries, cakes and pies.
When: Christmas Day Brunch at the Bella Lago room from noon to 4 p.m.; Dinner at the Ironwood Grille 3 p.m. to 9 p.m.
What: Italian. It could be what's for Christmas Day dinner. Both Vic and Angelo's locations in Palm Beach Gardens and Delray Beach will be open Dec. 25, and will feature an a la carte special menu in addition to serving its usual fare throughout the evening.
When: 11:30 a.m. to midnight
Telephone: PBG 561- 630-9899; Delray Beach 561-278-9570
What: This well-established downtown West Palm Beach haunt is always a spot for regulars. For those who don't want to miss their usual Saturday night ritual, restaurant goers will have the option to order from the regular menu, or choose the Christmas holiday special come the big day. The $22 special ($12 for children 10 and under) includes your choice of oven roasted turkey or honey baked ham served with mashed potatoes, gravy, candied yams, cornbread stuffing, green beans - and of course your choice of pumpkin or apple pie for dessert.
When: 8 a.m. to 4 a.m.
West Palm Beach (City Place)
Dinner and movie. It's a great thing to do any Saturday night - Christmas included. (We've all done it on a holiday once or twice) For those of you who'd like to give it a go on Christmas Day, City Place may just be the perfect destination to do both. Several of the outdoor shopping mall restaurants will be open and serving lunch and dinner, including:
What: If sushi and sashimi seem more appetizing than the usual holiday fare, visit City Place's Japanese steakhouse, Saito's, which will be open all day, and serving its standard menu selections. Hibachi anyone?
When: 11:30 a.m. to 11 p.m.
What: This may very well be the only Thai joint open Christmas day. Add some spice to your holiday this year and order up some crab rangoons, a plate of their ginger fried rice and some pineapple curry.
When: 11:30 a.m. to 11 p.m.
What: Slouvaki and gyros may be the way to go if you're feeling some Greek. The traditional Mediterranean-style menu will be available for lunch and dinner. Get ready to throw some napkins and hunker down at the outdoor bar until closing.
When: 11 a.m. to midnight
What: Barflies and bar food will be the motto of the day at Brewzzi's, which will be serving its regular menu but is looking to attract those who want to escape the madness at home and get out for a few drinks. Beer and pizza? Why not.
When: 3 p.m. to 11:30 p.m.
What: The seafood restaurant will be serving its regular menu all day, as well as a special holiday menu including three entrée specials: Grilled Seafood Trifecta of jumbo shrimp, lump crab and grilled salmon, $26.95. Herb-crusted Prime Rib served with a creamy horseradish sauce, potatoes and seasonal vegetables, $28.95. Holiday Mixed-grill Petit Filet Oscar, grilled salmon, jumbo shrimp and scallops served with roasted potatoes and sautéed spinach, $32.95.
When: Noon to 5 p.m.
What: The Palm Beach Island restaurant will be open all day, serving everything from breakfast straight through to after-dinner cocktails until last call at 3 a.m. For Christmas dinner Cucina will also be featuring a few specials holiday specials, including an herb roasted turkey entrée served with sautéed green beans, mashed sweet potatoes, roasted bliss potatoes, grilled zucchini and corn stuffing, giblet gravy, cranberry sauce, green bean casserole and your choice of pumpkin or apple pie. Prices will vary.
When: Breakfast 7 a.m. to 11 a.m.; luch 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.; and dinner 4:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. Open to 3 a.m.
Looking to live it up a little Christmas Day? Or is it just you and a special someone? Then the Four Seasons may be the way to go. For $100 a plate ($35 children ages 3 to 5) the hotel's main restaurant will be serving its Christmas Buffet. The buffet will include over nine stations, complete with a shellfish bar of Alaskan king crab, oysters, shrimp and crab claws. There will also be a table with house-smoked salmon and American caviar; a salad and cheese board with various charcuterie and pate; and maki sushi and sashimi. Feeling more adventurous? The Far East station will serve assorted steamed dim sum, Chinese barbeque spare ribs and vegetable spring rolls. More traditional features include a carving station complete with herb and citrus roast turkey or Norwegian salmon fillet, and a hot buffet of honey-glazed ham and garlic rosemary leg of lamb. There will also be a dessert station including the feature item, cranberry orange crepes with vanilla ice cream, and an assortment of cakes, pies and pastries.
When: 3 p.m. to 9 p.m.
What: Turkish delights? If you're feeling some traditional Middle Eastern eats, downtown West Palm Beach's Leila's will be open and serving up standard tapas and mezze style dishes like na'anak, tabouleh, falafel and baba ghanouj. Finish it off with a hit off the hookah and some Turkish coffee.
When: 4 p.m. to midnight
What: Homestyle American food with a gourmet twist, Henry's is a great spot for comfort classics that will probably be better than the overdone turkey or roast you get at home. Stay traditional with the turkey and mushroom meatloaf, or try a sesame-thyme seared tuna steak for a healthy twist. With a robust wine list and sizeable dessert menu, the restaurant's regular offerings will give you plenty to choose from.
When: 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. and serving its regular menu.
What: This established steakhouse will be taking reservations and serving its standard menu. Go ahead and treat yourself to one last Christmas gift with a perfect filet mignon.
When: 5 p.m. to 11 p.m.
Who would think this seafood restaurant, where you can order as many as 40 different types of fish throughout the year, would offer up a gluten-free menu? They do, but that won't be all come Christmas Day. A special feature menu will be on hand, as well. Sea scallops with fried plantains and jalapeno cheddar polenta, anyone?
When: Noon to 8 p.m.
What: If you were one of those kids who couldn't resist compiling a Christmas list even Santa would roll his eyes at, Mizner Park's ZED451 may be the restaurant for you come Christmas Day. The unique dining experience allows you "unlimited samplings" from its entire dinner menu, while also serving up standard entrée-style selections. But be sure to get your reservations in early - the place is already looking to be packed to the brim according to one hostess. Last reservations will be taken as late as 8:45 p.m.
When: 4 p.m. to 9 p.m.
What: If traditional Italian or pizza seems a simplistic departure from the usual suspects served over the Christmas holiday, both Casa D'Angelo (open 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. and featuring a special menu) and Speranza Wood Fired Pizza and Italian Restaurant (open 5 p.m. to 1 a.m.) are ready to take your order Christmas day.
Telephone: Casa D'Angelo, 561-338-1703
What: On Christmas Day there couldn't be a more entertaining option than dinner and a show at the Mai Kai. The Polynesian restaurant - famous for its stellar tropical drink menu and live Polynesian-style traditional dinner-and-dance performances - will be open for business and conducting its regular show times.
When: Check out the website for more complete information at www.maikai.com.
What: The Chart House - with entrée favorites like the prime rib, filet, and Snapper Hemmingway - will be serving both its regular and special menu on Christmas Day.
When: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
What: We already don't have the snow, so spending Christmas Day with a soft ocean breeze on the Pelican Grand Beach Resort's Ocean Grille verandah isn't a bad way to celebrate the South Florida sun. Start with the signature conch chowder and finish with a slice of mango cheesecake, or indulge in the special Christmas prix-fixe menu, $42 for adults and $21 for children ages 5 to 12.
When: Noon to 8 p.m.
What: Breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner will be available all day featuring the restaurant's regular and special holiday a la carte menus. Holiday additions include an eggnog crème brulee, seasonal calabasa (pumpkin) soup, and a prime rib special
When: Breakfast 7 a.m. to 11 a.m.; Brunch 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., and dinner 4 p.m. to 11 p.m.
What: Serving the regular menu all day from breakfast to dinner.
When: Breakfast from 11 a.m. to noon; dinner from 5: 30 p.m. to 10 p.m.
What: The steakhouse's standard menu, but only at this location.
When: 4 p.m. to 9 p.m.
(Broward and Palm Beach county locations)
Yes, we said it. For the extremely casual or last minute choice: simply say "TGI" Christmas at TGI Friday's. Every restaurant location from Royal Palm Beach to Boca Raton will be open Dec. 25.
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