Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood
Cristian Costea

Don't be stupid enough to jump on the mechanical bull at Tequila Ranch after polishing off oak-smoked ribs at Renegade Barbeque Co., chili fries at Johnny Rockets, sushi at Tatu, oysters at Bluepoint Ocean Grill, and a pretzel from Wetzel's ($2.55). What may spring from deep inside you will make others run into Hooters for the distraction of surgically enhanced bustlines. Instead of bull riding, enjoy all those delicacies on successive nights of the week and follow them up with some java from Bad Ass Coffee Co., Chunky Monkey ice cream ($2.78, cup or cone) at 2 a.m. from Ben & Jerry's, and some Pepto from CVS on your way home. You'll be OK. We promise.

Old Florida Seafood House

Grandpa's in town for the season, and it's clearly time to get the old coot married off again. You could pour through Google listings for Golden Years dating services, but here's some advice: the 70-something eye candy at Old Florida Seafood House ought to give him an excellent excuse to refill that Viagra scrip. This three-decades-old Lauderdale institution, complete with busy raw bar, stuffed sharks on the walls, and threadbare carpet, is a favorite with the finest local ladies of a certain age, who arrive on a Sunday evening decked out in their best duds, coifed and manicured and presumably perfectly weddable. You and Gramps can discuss their assets over an appetizer plate of shrimp Florentine ($8.95) and a bowl of oyster stew ($8.95), an entrée of freshly caught fish -- broiled, baked, or sautéed ($18.95 to $21.95), or a plate of sautéed veal with lobster tails (in season). The early-bird special is rather pricey between 4:30 and 5:30 (the three-course meal costs $17.95 Monday through Thursday, $19.95 Friday through Sunday), but it does give the erstwhile ladykiller ample opportunity to linger long enough to get noticed.

Cap's Place Island Restaurant and Bar

The cousin-from-Camden contingent has arrived, half a dozen nippers in tow, and by day six, you've stage-managed everything from airboat rides in the Everglades to daytrips to Disney. Worse news is in store: Your loud-mouthed sister-in-law has dropped in for a surprise inspection. Drastic times require drastic measures, so raise the salty old ghost of Cap Knight. Cap's Island Restaurant, which is set in two 80-year-old buildings on an island at Lighthouse Point, can be reached only by ferry. And it boasts enough nostalgic charm and locally caught seafood to stifle the in-laws -- at least for as long as it takes 'em to down a glass of chablis at the hand-built bar, peruse a couple of hundred old-Florida photos, and read all about how Cap and his wife ran a gambling and bootleg rum operation on the premises. If you still need a little distraction, introduce them to the Knight family -- a sister and two brothers who still run the place. Then all of you can polish off a plate of broiled dolphin ($24.95) and a slice of lime pie ($5.95). Sate them with histories, stuff them full of house-made fish dip, and for pity's sake, send them home on the next 747.

Harrison's Wine Bar

Red wine is full of reservatrol -- a potent fighter of cancer, high blood pressure, strokes, and bad cholesterol. This is one reason the French can smoke packs of unfiltered Gauloises, eat two pounds of butter daily, and stay thin and mean as minks. For optimal cardiovascular health, ignore the puritanical U.S. recommendations (One glass of red wine a day for women? Puuleeeze!) -- European doctors prescribe a moderate three glasses daily for the ladies and four for the guys. Drinking alone isn't good for you, however, so a place like 3-year-old Harrison's Wine Bar, very European in style and sensibility, is an excellent locale for a good workout. There's a wine list of more than 100 bottles here. The Santa Emma Merlot from Chile is $8 a glass; Silver Oak Cabernet is $150 a bottle (presumably spiked with extra reservatrol at that price). So you won't ever have to stick your tongue in the same bottle twice, owner Richard Duncan is committed to mixing things up: Lately, he's hot on the Stonehedge Zin, a Mont Gras Cab, and a Bearboat pinot. Harrison's tapas and cheese menu will give all that wine something to work with.

Sunday, of course, is a day of reflection. It's when one takes time to look inward, to contemplate the meaning of good and evil, to reflect upon sins, and finally, to become grounded in family and community. Let us all come together, then, at Boulevard Café, to drink of the Blood of the Mary beginning at 10 a.m.; to join with fellow brethren and sistren of our holy rainbow community. We shall join hands and give thanks over bowls of spinach artichoke dip with four cheeses and chips ($8.75); we shall break toast together over the three-egg scramble served amongst home fries and fresh fruit ($6.75); the lions shall sup upon filet mignon Benedict ($12) and then go home to lie down with lambs. And we shall know that we are righteous and good because we did not pretend we never received our complimentary mimosas. Let us contemplate at length the many sins of our exes, who paid for phone sex with our American Express Card and let us struggle to come to terms with the meaning and necessity of evil: How many bumps of Tina it takes to send you-know-who into orbit. And if we raise our voices in unison, it shall only be to wonder at the mystery of a God who creates roommates who walk away with our best Ralph Lauren cashmere crewneck. On a Sunday morning on Las Olas, to forgive is absolutely divine.

Ulysses and his hearty crew sailed the dark canals of Broward County. As they approached Pembroke Pines, Ulysses ordered his men, good and true, to lash him to the mast. For they approached Pitios, whose siren scent of deliciousness called to the stomach and could drive hungry men mad. The crew stuffed beeswax in their nostrils, and Ulysses ordered he not be released under any circumstances. As they passed Pitios, Ulysses caught a whiff of the Greek sausages, gyros, imported feta cheeses, and phyllo-wrapped spinach pies. "In the name of Zeus!" Ulysses gasped as he worked against the leather bindings. Then he beheld the pita bread: freshly baked, soft on the inside, with an ever-so-slight crunch on the outside, just like his mom, Anticleia, used to make. "Agamemnon, free my anxious maw!" he yelled to the heavens. Change jingled in his toga, surely enough to buy any one of the affordable entrées that run from $3.25 to $9.25. Owners Michael and Katerina Giannomoros stood waving. "Oh, Styx," he groaned, "cheap and authentic Greek food."

Seasons 52

You'd never dream of setting foot in an Olive Garden, much less a Red Lobster, but that doesn't mean their parent company, Darden Restaurants Inc., is giving up on you. Darden introduced a high-end, low-cal restaurant this year that's drawing yuppies as inexorably as a Prada close-out sale -- Seasons 52. Here's an idea whose time has come: delicious, elegantly plated little morsels, grilled in olive oil rather than butter, incorporating seasonal ingredients, whole grains, and lightly cooked vegetables -- promising a caloric content below 475 per dish. Among those we recommend: grilled deepwater sea scallops, cedar plank salmon, and mesquite roasted pork tenderloin. Prices range from $8 to $21.75. And, get this: If you're vegetarian, vegan, or on any kind of fad diet -- like the amazing new chocolate and vodka diet (it really works -- call us and we'll fill you in!) -- Seasons' kitchen will accommodate you without flinching. OK, so the thimble-sized desserts, gargantuan wine list (more than 60 wines by the glass), and plush Intercontinental Hotel-flavored setting don't have the personality of your Aunt May's frayed living-room rug. But heck, it's even better this way. So tuck your oh-so-precious politics in your back pocket, relax, and enjoy, enjoy, enjoy.

Kamzaman

To hunt for the perfect cup of coffee is to separate the men from the boys, the women from the girls, the NBA from your neighborhood pick-up game. There's a lot of crap out there. Mediocrity, really. But rest assured, at Kamzaman, there's no frou-frou soy, decaf double lattes. Instead, you'll taste the richest, smoothest Turkish coffee of your life for the ridiculously low price of $3. The caffeine elixir is brought to your table in a piping hot vessel, which you then poor into tiny ceramic cups for you and your guests. And what goes as well with good coffee as tobacco? Luckily, Kamzaman is a spacious smoke shop in a strip mall north of Sunrise Boulevard that's become a hotbed of Middle Eastern shops. Its walls are a continuous mural of scenes of Saharan life. For $8, they'll deliver a hookah to your table, and you can choose from among 15 types of tobacco.

A reasonably bright chimpanzee could be taught to make a faultless key lime pie: There's one immutable method, and it allows for no deviation. The recipe involves a can of condensed milk, a couple of eggs, a box of graham crackers, a stick of butter, and a handful of key limes. To see so many reasonably bright human beings in local restaurant kitchens floundering around with meringues and preformed crusts, Persian limes -- or worse -- bottled lime juice, whipping cream, and God-knows-what-all, is to witness the awful human compulsion to fiddle with what ain't broke. That being said, exceptions do exist. The pie-in-the-sky concoction dreamed up by pastry chef Gus Hernandez at River House is certainly one. His "key lime pie baked Alaska" is a delicious joke composed of a Brazil-nut graham cracker crust, a tower of sweet limey mousse, a rakish chapeau of browned Italian meringue, and many decorative swivels and swirls of berry coulis. That you can sit outdoors at a table under the stars to eat this pie between the glittering lights of two august mansions and the lazy New River makes variations like this one seem necessary.

Crazy Buffet

Our American romance with Asiatic foodstuffs shows no signs of slowing -- and now some genius has dreamed up a gigantic, all-you-can-eat Eastern food complex adapted to our very Western waistline -- Super Size Me-San. At Crazy Buffet, a budding Florida franchise with outlets in Orlando, Tampa, and West Palm, discerning diners can fork over $19.99 to begin at the sushi bar, which features 50 kinds of sushi, sashimi, and rolls, a lineup stretching as far as the hand can reach. A full dinner plate of dragon rolls, rainbow rolls, kimchee rolls, chunks of glistening raw tuna, yellowtail, and salmon is just a little something to whet the appetite. Next stop: the seafood table, for snow crab legs, shucked oysters, cold boiled shrimp, marinated mussels, seared scallops. And for a little variation, the salad bar offers cold comforts. A fourth course entails tough choices: pick your own beef, chicken, and bean sprouts for the chef to stir-fry, have a steak or a mess of shrimp grilled on the hibachi, or both. Or all. Just don't forget to stop by the Peking duck-carving station on the way back to your table. Finally, it's crucial to save a little room, maybe roughly the size of your small intestine, for a dessert table laden with cakes, pies, and ice cream -- because there will be no taking home leftovers in doggy bags -- you gotta live for the moment.

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