Food News

Martorano's Italian-American Kitchen Now Offers Blackjack Inside the Restaurant

Maybe you're thinking that Steve Martorano was afraid his meatballs weren't enough to pull the hungry gamblers from the blackjack tables. This is a ridiculous thing to think because (a) his meatballs are delicious and (b) Cuz ain't afraid of nothin'.

Martorano's Italian-American Kitchen is offering blackjack inside the restaurant at Seminole Hard Rock because, well, he's Steve Martorano and that's what he damned well feels like doing.

Martorano's Italian-American Kitchen at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino will now be the first major U.S. restaurant to offer blackjack tables inside the restaurant proper. According to a Sun Sentinel article:

Owner-chef Steve Martorano said for three years he urged Seminole Tribe of Florida leaders to add two blackjack tables to his restaurant, and the tribe's new COO approved them. The first cards were dealt on April 21.

"I see it kind of like a speakeasy," said Martorano, who can be seen flashing his tattooed, muscular arms on billboards throughout South Florida. "People would have dinner, and gamble in the lounge before and after."

So if you love to gamble but you're hypoglycemic and lose focus when you get hungry, your problems are solved -- at least, for the next five years, while the Seminole tribe still has an agreement with the State of Florida to offer blackjack.

Martorano heads up two Broward Italian eateries -- the Hard Rock location at 5751 Seminole Way in Hollywood and another at 3343 E. Oakland Park Blvd. in Fort Lauderdale, which is currently celebrating its 20th anniversary. There's also a Las Vegas location, and there are rumors of another to come in South Florida. Visit

Hit me, Cuz!

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Rebecca McBane is the arts and culture/food editor for New Times Broward-Palm Beach. She began her journalism career at the Sun Sentinel's community newspaper offshoot, Forum Publishing Group, where she worked as the editorial assistant and wrote monthly features as well as the weekly library and literature column, "Shelf Life." After a brief stint bumming around London's East End (for no conceivable reason, according to her poor mother), she returned to real life and South Florida to start at New Times as the editorial assistant in 2009. A native Floridian, Rebecca avoids the sun and beach at all costs and can most often be found in a well-air-conditioned space with the glow of a laptop on her face.
Contact: Rebecca McBane