• The space that once housed Broward's Best New Restaurant is now a sports bar. Mugs Bar & Grill has taken over where Christine's used to operate on Oakland Park Boulevard. At one time, Christine's doled out contemporary American food to the sound of sultry jazz music. Now you can eat a "mound o' taters" and watch games on the tube in your old favorite seat. Mugs also serves burgers, pasta, and bar food, and has a sizable selection of draft beer. Maybe what the location needed was a place where everybody knows your name? Best of luck, Mugs.
• I've always wondered what strip steak and pizza would taste like together. Now we can find out, thanks to Toscany (sic) Steakhouse and Pizzeria, opening early in December on Sample Road in Coral Springs (9711 W. Sample Rd., to be exact). The menu will feature two of Argentina's specialties: rich, grilled meat and thin-crust pizza.
• Boca, this year you should be thankful for the gift of Rocco. As in Rocco Mangel, owner of Rocco's Taco's and Tequila Bar, the second location of which is finally opening the day before Thanksgiving in Town Center (5250 Town Center Circle). Rocco is all over the place these days -- even Kelly Ripa is getting a piece. What's the secret? "We're a new breed of mom
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and pop operation," says Mangel. Ah, yes, I always think about hard working small business when I hear the name Big Time Restaurant Group.