Monday, December 28, 2009

Tin Roof Rusted aka Tarks (Dania)

Clam shack, seafood shack, not sure exactly what it should be called but it's definitely a shack and I love it so I'm going with love shack.  In all seriousness, I suspect Tarks is a love it or hate it type of place.  They have a solid local following and its also the first and last stop for many touristas flying in and out of Hollywood-Ft. Lauderdale International. (rentals/luggage is a dead give away)  But it's certainly not for everyone and I understand where the naysayers are coming from.   It's on the "divey" side and calling it dirty may be somewhat justifiable. 
See full size image

Tarks is a small place with counter service only and probably 20 to 25 seats. (okay there are a couple of tables outside but no service)  The staff is an interesting and entertaining cast of characters and their banter always puts a smile on my face.  It's a diverse crowd, ranging from cougars sporting their rocks and bling bling to blue collar workers escaping the sweltering South Florida heat. The beer is inexpensive and always cold.  The food always hits the spot for me.

 Tarks specializes in clams, oysters, seafood and wings.  (raw, steamed and fried).  My favorites include the gator tail, clam chowder, conch salad, dolphin sandwich, raw oysters, steamed clams, fried clam bellies, and shrimp grilled w/ BBQ or garlic sauce (not like the traditional New Orleans BBQ shrimp but a tasty alternative) Their wings garner rave reviews but they are breaded and on the heavy side and not my thing.  They have reasonably priced daily specials plus a kids menu.

If you are a fan of clam shacks, seafood shacks or love shacks, I would check out Tarks.  

Their motto is "Eat clams live longer, eats oysters love longer"  My wife hopes they're half right....

Tarks of Dania Beach on Urbanspoon

The Originators Since 1966!
Eat Clams...Live Longer!!! Eat Oysters...Love Longer!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Pizza Pizza Update

I've had the opportunity to return to three fairly new pizza spots over the past two weeks, Racks, Pizzavolante and Sosta.  I tried two pies at each location with one being the basic cheese/sauce (margherita) combo.  My second pie at Sosta was the siciliana - tomato sauce, mozzarella, anchovies, capers, black olives & basil.  Fantastic.  My second pie at Racks was the secchi - sopressata, provolone, fiore di latte  and goat cheese, very good.  My last pie at Volante was the cacciatorini - italian tomato, local mozzarella, grana California pepperoni, and guanciale, outstanding.

All three spots continue to serve very good to great pizza and it's almost impossible to select a favorite out of the three.  The overall taste/flavor of Sosta really reminds me of the pies I grew up on in NY but with a thinner crust.  My only knock on Sosta is that too many options include ham.  If you aren't in the mood for ham, your choices become limited.  Volante always delivers a tasty pie.  Only knock is the inconsistency of the crust.  Some are charred less than others.  The only real issue with Racks is the limited non white pie (I dislike those) options. (4 ala volante)

Again, it's impossible and unnecessary to select a definitive winner out of the three.  All are serving good to great pies and I would recommend visiting each one.  Sosta is underrated and I would call this a draw between Sosta and Volante.

1025 Lincoln Road
Miami Beach, FL 33139
(305) 722-5454

Sosta Pizzeria on Urbanspoon

3918 N. Miami Ave.
Miami FL 33137
Pizzavolante on Urbanspoon

Racks Italian Bistro and Market
Intracoastal Mall 163rd St and NE 36th Ave
N. Miami Beach, FL
Racks Italian Bistro on Urbanspoon

Miami Dolphins: Dolphins' Parcells talks at stoplight with homeless man -- South Florida

Nice column by David Hyde today regarding Parcells and a homeless man

Miami Dolphins: Dolphins' Parcells talks at stoplight with homeless man -- South Florida

Posted using ShareThis

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Lupica on Tiger

One more thing on Tiger: If his sponsorship with Accenture was supposed to be such a big deal for it and a crushing loss for it — how come I have no idea after all these years what Accenture DOES?

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Marlins Holiday Deal

I hate to help the Marlins sell tickets since they refuse to increase their payroll despite receiving luxury tax money from the Yankees BUT this is a great deal (26 games/lower level) and a great opportunity to get more children out to the stadium. Click on ad for tickets

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

2009 NFL Suicide Pick Week 15

3 more to go.  

Baltimore, Washington, Minnesota, Indy, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, New England, San Diego, New Orleans, Miami ,Dallas, Atlanta, Cincinnati and Tennessee are off the board.

There are three viable options this week for us.

Arizona heads to St Louis.  Short week for Zona after coming off a loss on Monday night.  They are  5-2 on the road this year and should win this one.

Denver is at home against the Raiders.  It appears that Charlie Frye is starting for the Raiders this week.  Denver rolls.

Seattle returns home to face Tampa.  Tampa has been very good to us this year and I expect that to continue this week.  Seattle is not very good but they are better than Tampa and play well at home.  It's a long trip for Tampa and I'm sure the weather will favor Seattle.

I've made my selections each week without looking down the road.  That said, we are close to the finish line and if we make it to week 17 there will be very slim pickings.  At this juncture, Denver at home against KC is the only real strong play.  Thus, I am going to hold Denver.  I also want to avoid getting caught in the big upset trap a la Pittsburgh the last two weeks.

Thus, the official pick is


Two of my favorite spots will be open on Christmas and featuring special menus.  Break that Chinese tradition...

Lola's on Harrison


Wild mushroom soup
with, arugula, crispy turkey bacon


Rock Salt Encrusted Certified Angus Beef Prime Rib
with Au Jus

Maryland Blue Crabmeat Crusted Mahi Mahi  

Lemon Thyme Butter Sauce

Roasted Cauliflower Au Gratin
Green Beans with coriander and garlic
White Cheddar Mashed Potatoes

Key Lime Pie

Chocolate Cherry Bomb with Cherry Sauce

Holiday Specials
In addition to our a la carte menu
Tempura Maine Lobster
Satsuma Tangerine, Grilled Fennel, Sausalito Springs Watercress 18

Main Course
Wood-Grilled Local Black Grouper
Caramelized Salsify, Swiss Chard, Pinot Noir Reduction 38
American Kobe Beef Tasting
Rib Eye & New York Strip, Celery Root, Black Truffle Jus 65

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Tostitos Dipping Sticks

Finally, a tortilla chip you can actually use with salsa and dip.  Tostitos recently introduced their new "dipping strips" and I grabbed a bag today. They work!!!.  They are cut in a rectangular shape and are thicker than normal tortilla chips so no breakage.  They're also longer so you can leave the salsa in the jar if you prefer.  Unfortunately, the chips are still super salty.  Nevertheless, they will serve a purpose during the upcoming college bowl season and NFL playoffs and are much better than those silly "scoops" they have been selling.

TOSTITOS® Dipping Strips! Tortilla Chips

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Don't Drink The Water-Epic Hotel

A foreign visitor has died and at least two other people have become sick after staying at a downtown Miami luxury hotel, and health officials are blaming an unusual type of pneumonia called Legionnaire's Disease.
Guests at the Epic Hotel have been relocated to nearby hotels to prevent further contact with the water, according to the Miami-Dade County Health Department.

Bubble Time

It's that time of year, holiday parties are starting and NYE is right around the corner.  Maybe you like some bubbles with your stone crabs and sushi.    I previously recommended an inexpensive alternative to champagne recession pagne well I found an even better alternative.  This one is also produced by Piper Sonoma but it is the Blanc de Blanc.  Tastes VERY close to the real deal and retails for less than $15.00. 

Brut image

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

2009 NFL Suicide Pick Week 14

13 down and 4 more to go.

Baltimore, Washington, Minnesota, Indy, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, New England, San Diego, New Orleans, Miami ,Dallas, Atlanta and Cincinnati are off the board.

Tough week as our choices are obviously dwindling.  I expect the Jets to go into Tampa and win this game even without Sanchez.  That being said, I'm not going with a road team at this stage in the game.

Tennessee is home against St. Louis and they should win this by double digits if they come to play.  I still see fight in them and they should be able to run at will. 

Official pick

Remember the Titans

Friday, December 4, 2009

Borojo (Hollywood) *** UPDATED

I'm a hot dog fan but never tried a Colombian dog until today.  I found a new place on Hollywood Blvd. in downtown Hollywood called Borojo.  They recently opened and feature two Colombian hot dogs, one is chorizo and several "gourmet" arepa options including shrimp, pork, beef and chicken.  They also have 13 or so appetizers including fried hot dogs, mini empanadas, chorizo with mini arepas and sliders.  They also have Colombian style hamburgers which I am unfamiliar with as well.

The space is clean, modern, casual and has a large flat screen tv plus wi-fi.  They are open for lunch and dinner and I think they are open late night as well.  Everything is under $8.50.

I opted for the Chori Perro (Chori-dog) which is a smoked sausage (yeah you guessed right chori is short for chorizo) with mozzarella, potato chips and bacon.  mmmmm.  This was a large dog with a nice bun that was able to stand up to the intriguing combo.  The chorizo was fresh and grilled nicely. The chorizo itself had a mild spicy flavor.   The bacon and crushed potato chips added nice flavor/texture.  The dog also came with a combo of five sauces a/k/a condiments that included ketchup, mustard, mayo (generally not a fan of) and pineapple.  I was a bit concerned about the sauce combo but it worked.  They all blended in nicely to form a tasty combo.  I wouldn't have known there was mayo or pineapple on the dog if they didn't tell me.

I really enjoyed my dog and looking forward to going back to try the super perro (hot dog and not a sausage), the burger plus some of the arepas. Not sure about the fried hot dogs though. I have visions of corn dogs with bright colored meat...

I'm curious about those gourmet arepas.  This place has potential.  I'll report back after I try some more items.

**** as promised I returned to try the not so "gourmet" arepas.  Round two I sampled the pork loin with the traditional Colombian sauce, hogado.  The hogado sauce was salsa-esque and overpowering.  Didn't love the pork or the arepa either.  I also sampled the tenderloin arepa which was served with mozzarella and a bechamel sauce.  The tenderloin was fine but the sauce didn't work for me nor did the arepa.  WE finished ONE of the three sliders....  I stand by my chorizo-dog recommendation but unfortunately can't recommend Borojo for anything else.  I apologize for the premature recommendation.  

Borojo on Urbanspoon

1940 Hollywood Boulevard
Hollywood, FL 33020-4524
(954) 367-5999

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

2009 NFL Suicide Pick Week 13

I really thought we were toast last week but the A.T.L came through for us.

Baltimore, Washington, Minnesota, Indy, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, New England, San Diego, New Orleans, Miami ,Dallas and Atlanta are off the board.

If you have Pittsburgh available now is the time to use them  They are home against the Raiders and this should be a 2+ TD win.  Not an option for us.

New Orleans travels to Washington this week and are a big favorite.  They looked great on Monday night but this could be a trap.  Big win, short week due for a loss... not our problem.

Cincinnati is home against Detroit.  Detroit didn't impress on turkey day and I doubt they will this week on the road.  Cincy should prevail.

Chicago faces the Rams at home.  This is very tempting but I'm not sure I trust Cutler and Co. enough to go with them. 

Official pick- drum roll please.......

Marty Funkhouser on Lebatard Show

Curb fans, if you missed Funkhouser on the Dan Lebatard show last week 11/24 check it out.  Funny stuff
Link below.  You will need to scroll down to 11/24
Funkhouser on lebatard