Restaurant News: Big Deals at Big City Tavern, March of Dimes' Chefs & Wine Extravaganza, ZED Offers Freebie

•    Determined to make its happy hour even happier, downtown Fort Lauderdale's

Big City Tavern

has rolled out a new martini menu and roster of half-priced appetizers. The "8 for $8" martinis are offered from 4 to 7 p.m. daily and range from a "health cocktail" with blueberry vodka, pomegranate liqueur and cranberry juice to itty-bitty Bikini Martini with Skyy Vodka, coconut rum, pineapple juice and grenadine. Bar bites can be nibbled from 5 to 7 p.m. daily, are priced from $5 to $6.25 and include seared-rare tuna tataki and shrimp-shittake potstickers.

•    More than 25 local chefs will be strutting their culinary stuff, accompanied by a veritable ocean of wine and booze, at the annual March of Dimes Signature Chefs & Wine Extravaganza, to take place Thursday, Sept. 30, at the Harbor Beach Marriott Resort & Spa in Fort Lauderdale. Among the participating toques are host Dean James Max of 3030 Ocean, Michael Bennett of Bimini Boatyard, Jason Smith of Steak 954 and Angelo Elia of Casa D'Angelo. Tickets are $125 in advance and $150 at the door and can be acquired here

•    Small plates with invisible prices are on the menu at ZED 451, part of a special offer that expires at the end of October. The deal is this. You go to their website and click on the "small plates offer" button, then print out the coupon that gives you your first nibble for free. Among the choices: fire-grilled ribeye with balsamic-glazed onions, Asian pork belly with five-spice hoisin sauce and citrus-dusted salmon. 

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