Tuesday, December 30, 2008
Current top 4
1. Char-Hut (Five guys coming on strong)
3. Le Tub
4. Five Guys
Knocked off Jack's (need to get back there soon though)
Five Guys fans, there is a new one opening at Aventura Mall.
Saturday, December 27, 2008
Wow! Very impressed with every aspect of the recently opened Meat Market on Lincoln Road. This could be my new favorite place on South Beach. They did a great job renovating/updating the old Pacific Time spot and it is very sharp looking. The have a nice bar area up front which made the wait for our table a non-issue. The model hostesses didn't hurt either...
I started with the kobe beef slider duo with bacon, white chedder & foie gras, mango mustard and caramelized onions. They were extremely tasty. After devouring both I assumed they would be the winner of the night but I was wrong. The kobe skirt steak was even better. It was cooked perfectly, tender and packed with flavor. It was perfect.
I didn't try them but the white truffle kobe tar tar and buffalo mozzarella also received raves at the table.
This place is a great addition to South Beach and should be a winner. If you are looking for great food in a fun/lively SoBe setting I would highly recommend Meat Market
Looking forward to going back
Tampa is in a must win situation and should dominate Oakland at home.
Atlanta beats the Rams
Baltimore needs a win and should beat Jacksonville
Pittsburgh wins easy against the Browns
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
This is an interesting week. Zona on the road, heading east to NE who are battling for their playoff lives. I like the Pats in this spot.
As weekly readers know, I always recommend against taking a road team and division rival games. However, this week I really can't see Washington beating Philly. I would still avoid unless you have no other options at this stage.
San Fran heads to St. Louis. Normally I would steer you away from this one too but San Fran is a different team under Mike Singeltary and should win this one by a TD+
Best play on the board for survivor this week has to be Denver at home against Buffalo.
Second best is Tampa at home against the Chargers. Norv blows.
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
This Friday night Norbert from Fresh Beer Distributor will be back for another beer tasting. . They will try 10 different micro brewed beers including several new and seasonal ones. $20.00 per person. You get to try all 10 and after the tasting choose your two favorites to drink at the store or take home.
Here’s the line up. Stone Oaked Arrogant Bastard Ale, Stone IPA, Stone Pale Ale,
Stone Ruination IPA, Terrapin Wake and Bake, Stoudt’s Double IPA, Dog Fish Head Raison D’Etre,
Dog Fish Head Palo Santo, Rogue Dead Guy Ale and Dog Fish Head 60 IPA.
On Saturday Night they welcome
Glen Grant 12yr $54.99 and Glen Grant 21yr $119.99
Four Armagnacs: Dartigalongue Bas XO $61.99, Dartigalongue Bas Hors D’Age $64.99
Baron de Lustrac Bas 1982 $114.99, Baron de Lustrac Bas 1980 $119.99
Two American Whiskies: Black Maple Hill Small Batch Bourbon $47.99
Black Maple Hill 23 yr
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
However, I;m sure most of you already used them so let's look for more options.
I expect Arizona to beat Minny, New England to top Oakland and Philly to crush the Browns
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
EL CONDE AZUL
Artisan Brands, the company that brings you the highest quality distilled spirits in
Tuesday, December 2, 2008
Week 14 provides us with some solid plays again.
Zona should beat the Rams by 2 TD's plus.
Also look for the Saints to win at home against the Falcons.
Colts roll against the Bengals
Tenn. beats the Browns
Vikings crush Lions
Saturday, November 29, 2008
They are located on N. 66th Ave., just north of Taft St. in west Hollywood, not far from the Hard Rock.
It's a casual, inexpensive place that serves OUTSTANDING steak hogies. (that's how they spell hogie) I'm from NY and not Philly BUT I've had plenty of cheese steaks and Sonny's is the real deal.
I always order a #90 with provolone. This is a steak hogie with fried onions. The steak is a tender, thinly sliced rib eye that's cooked perfectly with the onions and cheese. The best part may actually be the bread which is baked on site and done right. The inside is soft and chewy and the outside is perfectly crisp. Cost is $5.15 plus an additional .50 for the cheese.
You can smell them from the parking lot and you can watch them cook while you wait for a table or to go order.
I highly recommend this place.
**CASH only and closed Sundays**
Friday, November 28, 2008
Visit 1 (11/21/08)
Made it over to lunch last week and the service was SO bad I don't even feel like commenting on the food. I understand that they just opened but this was Sarah Palin comical, seriously. I'll spare you the details other than the fact that I was served a coke 4x in lieu of the diet coke I ordered. Forget about not knowing the menu, I'm convinced that our waitress had no idea what a hamburger was.. It was embarrassing because I brought a group of Johnny V first timers who were looking forward to it based on my raves. I know they just opened but the mistakes we encountered were inexcusable. Anyway, menu is extensive with Johnny V's take on classic comfort food. We started with his bbq potato chips "nachos" serves with cheddar cheese, bacon and blue cheese dip which were okay but nothing special. I opted for the bbq pulled pork slider trio with mango slaw. It was good but not enough slaw on two of the three. Moreover, the bbq was a little too sweet for my palate. Nevertheless, there are several items on the menu that I look forward to trying and I will be back. I'm sure the will have the kinks worked out soon.
Visit 2 (11/26/08)
Tale of two visits... Made a special trip up to Las Olas today in order to give Smith & Jones another shot. MUCH better experience. The host was great, staff friendly and our server was perfect. I opted for the smoked beef brisket and beef sausage which was from the Kruez Market in Lockhart Texas. This was can't wait to go back good. The brisket was super tender and extremely tasty. The sausage was equally as good, cooked perfectly and very flavorful. Great dish. The caesar salad with chicken was also a hit at the table. Very glad I went back. On a side note a quick look at the wine list revealed several bottles in the $30 and under range with BTG options in the $6-$7 range.
In summary, I do not advocate waiting a couple of weeks and/ or months before visiting a new restaurant in order to allow them to find their stride. That is silly and unfair to the new restaurant trying to succeed. Go but don't write a place off after one early bad experience, especially with a well known and proven chef. Moreover, Smith & Jones has an extensive menu and I suspect there will be some hits and some misses. I'll post back as I locate them...
1313 East Las Olas Blvd. Ft Lauderdale, FL
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
There are some strong road teams this week.
Tenn should crush Detroit on turkey day.
Miami beats the Rams by double digits.
Balt beats Cincy
Colts crush Clev and the Jets knock off Denver at home.
Good luck and happy Thanksgiving
Monday, November 24, 2008
Not wild about heading to the mall for dinner but it could be a good call pre or post a movie.
The happy hour deal, M-F 4-7, sounds like a real winner with $3.95 and $4.95 plates. Menu attached
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
THIS FRIDAY NIGHT FROM FOR A FREE TOUCH VODKA TASTING.
Featuring “Touch Key Lime Pie Martini”.
Distilled from Wildflower Honey
Uses locally grown ingredients
Valencia Orange flavor
Key Lime flavor
Thursday, November 13, 2008
Hollywood Vine has
Monique is a certified level sommelier currently pursuing the challenge of becoming a Master Sommelier. Her passion for wine can only be matched by her passion for food and finding perfect combinations of the two. She believes that the right wine is the wine that you love and can enjoy with those that you love." Monique is passionate, personable and very qualified.
"Savor an old world and new world example from different grape varietals and learn how different wine making techniques and philosophies affect the taste. We'll teach the key differences in flavor and style while seeking delicious compliments for your
The Cost will be $30.00 per person and will include some snacks as well as a great selection of fine wines from all over the world.
YOU MUST RSVP
954 922 2910
Philly should win easily at Cincy this week but they are on the road so I would avoid unless you are out of other options.
Miami will win again this week but they were our official pick last week. If you have them still I would go with them.
Carolina stomps Detroit at home and Tampa Bay beats Minny.
We used Carolina in week 4 so we have to go with TB
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Saturday, November 8, 2008
Now that it is finally cooling down out there it's a great time to hit Josh's Organic Market over on the Hollywood Broadwalk just south of the Ramada on Harrison St. It's open every Sunday from 9:00 a.m to 5:31. He has great fresh organic produce and also has a juice bar.
It should be noted that Hollywood recently renovated and repaved most of the broadwalk and did a really nice job. If you are hungry, I like Sugar Reef for breakfast and lunch or grab a slice at Angelo's Corner a little further north on the broadwalk. That said a burger and beer at Le Tub is hard to beat on a nice Sunday afternoon..
** if you head up in the morning I would also recommend picking up some bagels at Sage on Hallandale Beach Blvd. Best NY Bagels down here
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
** edited to add that it is a small place with minimal to no seating**
Jo Jo's Pizza & Subs
Pizza, Sandwiches, Hot Dogs
2458 Sheridan St
**********NEW OWNERSHIP AND WAY DOWNHILL ALERT****
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
Week 8 was a tough one BUT our official pick, the Bears, came through.
Week 9 looks problematic for The Chowfather because the best plays are division rivalries which I always recommend avoiding. I fully expect New England to beat the Bills at home this week. Division rival so we pass. I also expect the Jets to beat the Rams BUT the Jets were our pick in week 7. All season we have recommended taking the east coast team at home v a west coast team, especially if it is a 1p.m. spot. This has worked well all year. Seattle travels to Miami this week and all signs point to a Miami win. That said, The Chowfather has a hard time recommending the Fins in a survivor pool. Carolina will beat Oakland for sure but they are on the road so we pass. Patience is a virtue and you may be rewarded by waiting until Monday night and going with the Cardinals at home against the pants dropping Niners. Division rival on Monday night so we can't officially recommend.
Sooo what's the official pick?? If the Jets are available I would go with them. We already used them so my official pick is MIAMI
Monday, November 3, 2008
I highly recommend this spot.
1920 Tyler St Hollywood FL
Friday, October 31, 2008
Is anyone out there still alive? For this reading this for the first time, in a survivor pool, all you have to do is pick one winner without the point spread each week. Winners move on. However, you can only use the same team one time. Lose and you are done.
Onto week 8. Jacksonville will smoke Cincinnati but it is a division rival and on the road so I will look for a better play. Tampa Bay should win easily at KC but I really want to avoid taking a road team. Chicago over Detroit could be the play despite the division rivalry. Detroit is not good. Giants will beat Dallas this week but we already used them. Denver over Miami may be the best play but I'm going to with Chicago as the official pick
Thursday, October 30, 2008
Come join us to celebrate or Sulk. We’ll have Election coverage as well as some excellent recession friendly wines.
This week we welcome Melissa Caraballo from Vin Di Vino Imports. Melissa is a local Hollywooder and will taste
us on wines from all over
Tuesday November 4th
No Charge for tastings
The Nino Franco winery is located in Valdobbiadene, a zone in the upper reaches of the
"Rustico" opens with firm bubbles and crisp acidity. Light aromas of banana on the nose lead to fresh pear on the palate.
BTG $6.75 Retail $18.99
An almost clear light straw yellow in color. Yellow apple and pear fruit on the nose with faint nuances of lentils, asparagus, and tobacco. A straight-line Gruner with grapefruit and white pepper spice on a light-to-medium bodied frame with lively acidity.
BTG $5.75 Retail $14.99
Ruby red with garnet reflections, intense and persistent fragrance, fruit (red fruit and prunes) with vanilla nuances. Medium-to-full bodied with a good balance and ready to drink.
BTG $4.75 Retail $11.99
This well-known international grape thrives in the Sicilian climate. The resulting wine is a concentrated warm red with soft red fruit,
extremely smooth tannin, and lingering herbal elements.
BTG $5.00 Retail $12.99
Ruby red in color with violet towards the rim. Shows aromas of red fruit and light vanilla. Full red fruit with hints leather and spice on the palate. Medium-bodied with good acidity,soft tannins and medium oak on the lingering finish.
BTG $6.50 Retail $17.99
Friday, October 24, 2008
"Chef Johnny Vinczencz of Johnny V Las Olas will add casual and less expensive to his repertoire next month when he opens Smith & Jones Bar and Grill at 1313 Las Olas Blvd., in the old Louie Louie spot.
“This is something that I’ve wanted to do for quite a while,” he says. “When the opportunity came to do something lie this on Las Olas, I jumped on it.”
Nothing on the menu will cost more than $20. The emphasis will be American comfort foods with a chef’s touch. Think house-made sous vide pastrami sandwiches ($10), Philly cheese steak sandwiches that start with shaved rib eye ($11) and nachos made with home-made BBQ chips ($8). "I've also got a great love of barbeque."
The 200-seater will fill the void left by the closing of O’Hara’s with live jazz and blues nightly. Long-time fans of Vinczencz might remember his Johnny V’s Kitchen on Alton Road in Miami Beach. It will serve as a model of sorts for the new place. “That only had 27 seats. It was busy, but we didn’t make a lot of money.”
Vinczencz, whose family name is Hungarian, is calling the new spot Smith & Jones because they are quintessential American names, much like the new menu and concept. He opens to open Nov. 12."
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Friday, October 17, 2008
I expect Tenn to shut down KC and win easily but they are on the road so I would avoid unless you have no other home options.
Dallas at the Rams is another solid road option, if necessary. Monitor Romo's status, he may go after all.
The best option is the Giants as they return home after an ugly loss on Monday to face the 49ers. SF making the long trip with an early start. This should be an easy win. Go with them if you haven't used them yet.
I also really like TB at home against Seattle. Seattle has been awful when heading east.
Another strong home option is Houston yes Houston over Detroit.
Sunday, October 12, 2008
If you are in the area, I would give this place a chance. It is a casual place, do takeout and deliver.
Thursday, October 9, 2008
I recently tried Five Guys Burgers and was underwhelmed. It was okay and very good compared to fast food burgers but doesn't make my list.
1. Char-Hut- This is an outstanding burger. Fresh and you can watch them grill them while you wait. They have a few locations in Broward but I prefer the Davie and Pembroke location over the Sunrise one over on University. The buns are never fresh at the Sunrise location and the burgers are better at the other two.
2. Le Tub- On the water in Hollywood. Great spot to grab a beer and a huge tasty burger.
3. Kingdom- small open air sports bar over on Biscayne Blvd serving big juicy burgers.
4. Jack's Old Fashion Hamburgers- Located on Federal Highway in Ft. Lauderdale. On the small side but fresh.
Honorable mention: Sonny's Famous Steak Hogies. They key here is the bread. They bake their bread on site and it is great. Impossible to order the burger though because the cheesetake is a must do.
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
On to week 6
I expect Minnesota to crush Detroit at home. Defense will shut them down. Oh and they have a stud RB that should run wild. Division rival though
so I have to take a pass.
Very tempted to take the Chargers at home against New England. Chargers return home and should bounce back against a NE team heading west back to back. That said, I;m not crazy enough to back Norv over Bill. Pass.
I also expect Washington to take care of business at home against the Rams. Rams have a new coach but that will not save them this week.
Washington is the official pick. Good luck
Monday, October 6, 2008
"Benefiting the bellies of foodies and oenophiles is AltaMar, whose owner, Claudio Giordano, is opening his restaurant on Monday nights for a five-course menu with wine pairings. The restaurant will be closed to the general public and open to only 30 lucky reservation holders and the only thing you need to bring besides an appetite and $50 per person (including unlimited wine pourings) is, according to Giordano, ''a driver.'' The private wino dinners kick off on Monday and continue weekly through Nov. 17. For reservations, call 305-532-3061."
source: Velvet Underground
Alta Mar is one of my favorite spots on the beach. They have great daily seafood specials and pastas. Truffle ravioli is a winner too.
This sounds like a GREAT deal
Saturday, October 4, 2008
El Tamarindo Coal Fired Pizza recently opened in Hallandale near the dog track. This is a weird combo, Salvadoran food and coal fired pizza. It should be noted that they are related to El Tamarindo on state road 84 in Ft. Lauderdale (never been there)
I've heard of pupusas but that is the extent of my familiarity with Salvadoran food. Regardless, it was the coal fired pizza that was calling my name. I went with their specialty pie which was broccoli rabe and sausage. I thought it was on the border of good to very good. Very similar to Anthony's but not burnt (which some may prefer). The broccoli rabe was very good and so was the sausage. The cheese, sauce and dough were also very good. My main gripe is that the pizza was overloaded with the toppings. I know that may be a positive to most people but I enjoy tasting the cheese and sauce and I felt that both were overpowered. That being said, it was still very enjoyable and I'm looking forward to going back and trying some other combinations.
They also serve coal fired chicken wings which were almost indentical to Anthony's. (topped with grilled onions) That is a good thing since they are a favorite of mine. Only difference is that the wings were much smaller. Tasted great though.
Of course, I had to try something Salvadoran and went with a corn tamale with cream (light and on side). This was great. Really wish I tried some other items but will be back. I did not see pupusas on the menu but they do serve baleadas, tamales, tacos, churrasco (looked great), fried whole sea bass and red snapper and other steak and seafood items. Prices appeared very reasonable.
This place appears to be a winner and I'm looking forward to heading back soon and trying some of the Salvadoran dishes.
Thursday, October 2, 2008
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
see link below for participating restaurants and menus
My recs based on quality of restaurant, posted menu and spice value are
Grill 66 (never been but on my short list to try and menu looks good
)Hi Life Cafe
Lola's on Harrison
*chef recently left sunfish grill so I am no longer recommending it*
Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Next up is Dallas. They are at home against a weak Cincy team who may be without Palmer again. I expect Dallas to bounce back and win easily.
I also really like the Giants. They are at home, coming off a bye and facing a west coast team (Seattle) making the long trip. Giants should come out with the W.
Carolina, Dallas and the Giants should all prevail this week. The official pick is the Giants. Good luck
$15.00 per person (will be applied to any purchase from the entire portfolio)
Artisan Brands & Hollywood Vine Presents
Michael Urquhart, proprietor of
The world’s largest & best Single Malt Scotch Portfolio
Single Malts to be tasted:
Speymalt from Macallan 1990
Strathisla 25 yr
Old & Rare
Glenrothes 30 yr
Glen Grant 30 yr
These labels will all be available for sale during the tasting at a discounted price, as well the entire catalog is available for special order