Restaurant Reviews

Foodstuff

"Life's passions" is the motto at the new food emporium Dancing Bear (333 E. Las Olas Blvd., Fort Lauderdale, 954-779-7374), and it's apropos. The enormous gourmet bakery/deli/eatery, which practically takes up a city block, offers everything from fragrant roses to sumptuous chocolates to fine wines (ask the full-time sommelier for help). Don't be fooled by the nominal reference to deadheads, however. Dancing bears may have served as the logo for both the Grateful Dead and the seemingly dirt-poor fans who followed the band around the country, but this Dancing Bear has no interest in poverty: Vases in the "discriminating" gift shop, for example, could put you $300 in the hole. And if you want to valet-park that VW bus so you can sit down and sup on the American fare, well, it'll cost ya $3, dude. Not including tip.

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Jen Karetnick is an award-winning dining critic, food-travel writer, and author of the books Ice Cube Tray Recipes, Mango, and The 500 Hidden Secrets of Miami.
Contact: Jen Karetnick