You won't have to sing for your supper but you can dance to it at the new 51 Supper Club and Lounge (11701 Lake Victoria Gardens Ave., 561-622-3500), which opens next week in the giant Downtown at the Gardens mall.
A throwback to the days before DJ stations, grazing menus and molecular gastronomy, 51 promises Euro-centric cuisine "inspired by Old World traditions wisely revised and respectfully embellished for a new generation of diners." Whether that "new generation of diners" is going to rock out to the smooth croonings of Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Sammy Davis, Jr., in 51's retro piano lounge is another matter. But who knows? Stranger things have happened.
What's happening in the dining room is the purview of exec chef
Armand Vanderstigchel, who's done everything from cook for Matt Lauer to
develop recipes for Log Cabin maple syrup. No menu is up yet for 51,
but if it's anything like its "sister restaurant," Brasserie 214 in New
York, expect dishes like veal croquettes with Dijon sauce, Polish-style
chicken scallopini with smoked duck bacon, and the beer-braised short
rib stew called Carbonnade Flamandes.
The place itself looks
swanky enough, with lots of dangling chandeliers, big half-moon
banquettes and an undulating, tile-faced, mirror-backed bar. Oh, and if
you're one of 51's "most loyal and frequent customers," you get
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chauffeur service in a silver Rolls-Royce, which in these days of $4 a
gallon gas, is pretty damn retro too.