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Lemon Grass Asian Bistro

Lemon Grass is swank, but the price is right. The menu at this Fort Lauderdale spot verges on gigantic, but it?s easy to navigate, and your bill will be just as easy on your wallet. And unlike other multipage menus, this one hangs together beautifully and never loses focus, effortlessly drawing out Vietnamese, Chinese, Hawaiian, Thai, and Japanese threads. From the sushi bar, a gorgeously designed plate of tuna tataki is arranged like a Chinese fan; a plate of tiny whole baby octopuses slathered with a sweet and rich deep-red marinade pop when you chew them -- a visceral effect that takes some getting used to, but they?re wonderful. Vietnamese-style summer rolls are a perfectly balanced ode to the season; won-ton soup with asparagus floats puck-sized homemade chicken dumplings in a clear broth festooned with napa cabbage. The chefs? lightness of touch extends from the homiest of soups to the fanciest entrée, and it?s hard to imagine anything more pleasant than sitting at a sidewalk table over a plate of ?Mama?s lobster.?

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