Saturday, November 29, 2008

Sonny's Famous Steak Hogies (Hollywood)

I've posted about Sonny's before here and on Chowhound but wanted to remind cheese steak fans and people searching for good value to check this place out.

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**
Sonny's Famous Steak Hogies on Urbanspoon

Friday, November 28, 2008

Tale of Two Visits- Smith & Jones

The following are two recent Chowhound posts regarding my first two visits to Smith & Jones on Las Olas.

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
Smith & Jones Bar & Grill on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Survivor anyone alive????? week 13

Our run had to end at some point. Still surprised Denver lost at home to the Raiders. Hopefully, some of you had Tampa and Chicago left and went with them.

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
The Chowfather

Monday, November 24, 2008

and the oscar goes to


CF recently watched Tropic Thundar and Robert Downey Jr. was amazing and oscar worthy. Tom Cruise was very funny but he his role was too small to discuss oscar. Heath v Downey Jr. Loved both but Heath was mesmerizing and has to win

The Grill on the Alley

The Grill on The Alley- Aventura Mall- opened last week. Stopped by today and had a very good ahi tuna wrap for lunch, one of several daily specials. Generous portions of very fresh tuna with a tasty, no mayo asian slaw. They have some outdoor seating and a bar area in addition to the main room.
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
Grill on the Alley on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Free Vodka Tasting 11/21 Hollywood Vine


Featuring “Touch Key Lime Pie Martini”.


Distilled from Wildflower Honey

Micro distilled

Artisan vodka

Uses locally grown ingredients

Small batch

All natural

Valencia Orange flavor

Key Lime flavor

80 proof

Hollywood Vine

2035 Harrison Street

Hollywood, FL 33020


954-922-7660 fax

Survivor week12

Our official pick came in again last week as Tampa Bay pulled out the Win over the Vikings. This appears to be a very difficult week. Tampa may be the strongest play despite being on the road. If you didn't use them last week I would consider them this week. I also fully expect the Bears to bounce back this week and knock off the Rams. The best play on the board involves the Broncos at home against the Raiders. As you know, I almost always shy away from division rivalries in a survivor pool but this is a tough week and Denver is the best home play. Official pick is the Broncos.
Good luck.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Wine Class at Hollywood Vine 11/22/08

Hollywood Vine has Monique Peterson teaching a Wine class Saturday November 22nd from 2pm – 4pm

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.

The Class:

Old World versus New World Tasting Class.

"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 Holiday meals"

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.


954 922 2910

Hollywood Vine

2035 Harrison Street

Hollywood, FL 33020


954-922-7660 fax

Survivor week 11

Week 10 worked out well as the official pick won as did the other mentions.

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

Keith Olberman

The Chowfather prefers to post about food, wine, and sports but this is a fairly powerful clip from Keith Olberman regarding Prop 8 in California and is obviously applicable to all of us here in Florida.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Josh's Organic Market- Hollywood Broadwalk

hollywood1.jpg (46262 bytes)

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

NY Style Pizza ** DOWNHILL ALERT**

Found a very good NY style pizza place called Jo-Jo's Pizza & Subs. It's located on Sheriden St. east of I-95 near Oakwood Plaza in Hollywood. The cheese, sauce, crust and grease are close to the real deal. They also serve NY and Chicago style hot dogs which I haven't tried yet but will soon. Check it out if you are in the area and appreciate authentic NY pizza.

** 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

Jo Jo's Pizza & Subs on Urbanspoon


Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Survivor Week 10

Congrats if you are still alive in your survivor pool. Shoot me an email and/or a comment if you are.

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

Ceviche Fans

I've been meaning to post about a great spot for ceviche. Goyo El Pollo is a small casual Peruvian restaurant located one block North of Hollywood Blvd. in Dowtown Hollywood. Their ceviche, I prefer the mixed seafood, is outstanding. I think you will have a difficult time finding better ceviche in South Florida. (In all fairness, I've never tried Francesco's in the Gables) They also specialize in rotisserie chicken.
I highly recommend this spot.

1920 Tyler St Hollywood FL

Goyo El Pollo on Urbanspoon