Maguire's Hill 16
If you're driven to drink as soon as you punch out, chances are it's not because you're dying for loud Top 40 drivel and preternaturally perky service. You want to get down to business after a day of conducting business. That's why New Times staff members have long been fixtures at Maguires -- where dark wood paneling and photographs depicting the old country lend a genuine, drinking-as-art atmosphere that could not exist at a yuppie watering hole or tourist trap. Bartenders and waitresses attentively fill your cup of cheer with fine liquor or earthy draft beer. Thirsty patrons who are thrifty like the prices: From 4 to 7 p.m., imports cost $3.25, domestics $2.75, and well drinks $2.50. Plentiful free food (sometimes mediocre) is available, and a full menu of pub-style comestibles is offered if you're willing to pay. Every Thursday through Sunday, a live combo plays traditional Irish melodies -- much better accompaniment for drowning your workday woes than cheesy renditions of the latest pop tunes.
Mango's Restaurant and Lounge
Where is it written that a jazz club must be a bar? Something about the form lends itself more to lingering over dinner than the tenth beer. The jazz kicks in around 9:30 p.m., and the local jazz bands booked there play to a packed house. In the smoking section, which is closest to the stage, an open table is as rare as desert rain. One recent night a woman belted out jazzy covers of Stevie Wonder with a backing group consisting of a bassist, a drummer, a keyboardist, and a saxophonist/flutist. The notes mingled with the tastes and smells of hearty, homey fare such as the herb-roasted turkey breast in cranberry chutney sauce, cementing Mangos' stature as a culinary and musical force with which to be reckoned.
Tropical Acres Steakhouse
If you're visiting Fort Lauderdale and you rent a car at the airport, chances are you'll drive by this sign, which is nestled amid the foliage along Federal Highway. The aqua and pink tubes of its classic roadside advertisement have flickered since 1949, beckoning would-be diners to the table. The sign would seem a good omen for visitors and locals alike, hearkening back to a simpler time when all a South Floridian really wanted was a tropical cocktail with a surf and turf. Some things change. Newer neon often stamps out the old. But the Tropical Acres sign still stands. So, if you pass this little landmark on your way into or out of town, don't forget to say goodnight.

Best Of Broward-Palm Beach®

Best Of