Consider this the answer to “Hey Bren, can you recommend a good restaurant in Broward?”
MY FAVORITE BROWARD COUNTY RESTAURANTS
Listed in alphabetical order
Arun’s Indian Kitchen in Coral Springs. Personally, I prefer to take-out instead of dine-in at Arun’s (mostly because there are only several tables inside).T i n y! My go-to order is the Chicken Makhani-Butter Chicken-Tikka Masala (yes, that’s all one dish) accompanied by the Garlic Naan. One order is enough for two.
Burlock Coast Three words: Chef Paula DaSilva. She’s back. Get to it.
Cafe La Buca It looks like a regular pizza joint from the outside, yet reservations are needed. No menu, no prices. While everything at Cafe La Buca is special, the bread and pizza dough are unlike any other I’ve ever had. Another plus? It’s BYOW! With no corkage fee, you are free to indulge in your wine of choice to pair with their “mamma mia” good food.
Cafe Seville Crazy good Spanish food and excellent service in East Fort Lauderdale. The paellas and the Calamari Francaise are out of this world. Stick to the ever-changing Sharpied specials board.
Cafe Vico The main reason to visit? Vico has the best lasagna in Broward and a mean Frutti di Mare. The recently renovated space is looking better than ever. Make sure and check out the wine room, available for private dinners.
Casa D’ Angelo One of Broward County’s top restaurants. Forget the menu. Instead, focus on the never-ending list of daily specials. Truffles in season? You are in luck! Casa D’ Angelo never skimps on the truffle servings. My favorites are the Sausage & Meatball appetizer, the Mushroom Risotto with black truffles, and the Osso Buco.
Eduardo De San Angel Mexican food in East Fort Lauderdale. Don’t let the colorful strip mall location fool you, this is a great one! There’s not a single taco or quesadillla on the menu, and you won’t even miss them. The Cilantro Soup is one of their signature must-order appetizers. Excellent service and upscale eats await you at Eduardo’s.
Etaru There’s no question that South Florida still needs more waterfront dining locations. But one with an outstanding menu? Potential to excel? And in Broward? Say what? This, my friends, is a true culinary unicorn.
Ireland’s Steakhouse Hidden away inside the very average Bonaventure Resort & Spa in Weston, Ireland’s is a top-notch act and up to par with South Florida’s best steakhouses. Just the bread basket alone will make you fall in love with them. The Truffle Mac & Cheese, Roasted Pork Belly, Kobe Croquettes, Spinellus Steak, and Colorado Lamb Chops are all exceptional. Shoot, even their Vegetable Pad Thai rocks!
Ishilima Modern Peruvian Japanese hiding out in West Pines. Order the wings and any of the specials.
Jimmie’s Chocolates and Cafe So in love with Jimmie’s. Although there’s seating available in the lush garden complete with chandeliers, candles, and fountains outside, I prefer the tiny private dining room upstairs. Caribbean fusion in Dania? Yup, somehow, it works! Save room for dessert. Trust me.
Kaluz Beautiful waterfront restaurant in Fort Lauderdale. The extensive menu has something for everyone. Day or night, by land or by sea, Kaluz is the place to be.
Kuro Located inside the Hard Rock Hotel in Hollywood, this newcomer serves upscale Japanese eats and has already become one of my favorite Broward restaurants. Disclaimer: the cigarette smell throughout the lobby will follow you all the way to the restaurant entrance. Once inside, it will subside. Promise. Reviewed here…
La Brochette Bistro Hiding in a shopping strip between a Dollar Tree and a Winn Dixie, but worth the trip! The warm bread is served with a honey dollop, the pan seared fresh Jumbo Sea Scallops, the Macadamia-Nut Crusted Chilean Seabass and the house White Chocolate (Croissant) Bread Pudding are all must-haves.
Louie K’s Club Sandwich Love at first bite. Remember these scenes from Seinfeld? Luckily, Louie K is not THAT strict, but there ARE some rules you must follow. For whatever reason, that reminds me of those Seinfeld episodes. This is a one-man show. All of it. Walk into the small shop, take an order form and pencil, fill it out completely, and turn it in. You have now officially placed your first (and probably not last) order. Your sandwich creation will be meticulously prepared by Louie himself. While you wait, study the many Miami-freestyle celebrity photos on the wall and sway to the old school tunes playing at “the club.” I may or may not be featured in one the pictures too! Hmmm. Once you receive your order, sit back, enjoy, and be forever hooked!
Mustard Seed Bistro This unexpected find is in a strip mall. Thankfully, once you are inside you will forget all about its location and fall in love with the menu. Expert tip: call by 1 pm to reserve your special cupcakes for dessert. Don’t say you weren’t warned.
Pasta And Another strip mall gem. In Margate. Not much to do there, but this one is worth your travel efforts. The menu? Well, it’s pasta AND whatever sauce/topping you want. Get it? PASTA, AND? Small, old school, and sinfully delicious.
Russo’s Coal-Fired Italian Kitchen The devil is in the secret details. Be on the lookout for their ocasional Supper Club dinners and ask for their “secret” menu item: the Chicago style deep dish pizza.
Sardellis Elegant Italian dining just steps from the Hollywood shore. Great everything: service, food, and decor.
S3 Sun. Surf. Sand. Directly across Fort Lauderdale beach and offering a tapas-style menu, S3 is a great spot for tourists and locals alike. Every time I visit I feel like I went on a mini-vacation! Casual during the day and sexy-as-hell at night. S3 has it all!
Serafina Listed as waterfront, but the view is usually blocked by all the docked boats. That’s OK. Serafina is a little hideaway in East Fort Lauderdale. Traditional Italian eats in an unpretentious environment.
Sosta Cafe Authentic mom and pop casual Italian spot amidst suburbia madness.
Steak 954 Broward County’s answer to fine dining. And that’s a big deal! Not too many places north of the 305 border fit that category. Located inside the posh W Hotel, Steak 954 is the place to see and be seen. It’s not all looks though, the menu rocks too! My favorites? The 954 Cheesesteak, Truffle Mac & Cheese, Tater Tots, Miso Glazed Black Cod, and the Freshly Baked Cookies To Go.
Tavolino Della Noté Oh the many faces of Tavolino. Casual lunch menu? Upscale Italian dinner? Casual lunch? Comedy night? Latin night? Family vibe? Romantic atmosphere? Those ALL describe Tavolino to a T! This large Coral Springs restaurant has something for everyone. Divided into two different spaces under one roof, with clever decor and space planning, Tavolino efficiently accomplishes it all. Solid, great food and service, time after time. Tell Eddie I sent ya!
Thai Spice A little kitschy, a lot delicious. Another strip mall gem I absolutely love to visit. You cannot miss the large RED signage calling your name as you drive by. Make reservations ahead of time or wait an eternity to be seated. Get the Bangkok Rolls and Lobster Pad Thai.
The Cook and the Cork Coral Springs strikes again! Something must be in the water. This small restaurant has a big heart. Order any of the pastas and the lamb chops. You MUST also try the spare ribs! Reservations are a must.
Timpano Italian Chophouse This Las Olas classic always delivers. I love the live music and overall sexy vibe. Service can be hit or miss, but I can’t say I’ve ever had a bad dish. Ever.
3030 Ocean Hidden inside the Marriott’s Harbor Beach Resort & Spa in Fort Lauderdale, 3030 is reopened and ready to impress. Currently obsessing over the Squid Ink Linguini.
Twenty-Twenty Grille (technically not Broward County, but close enough) Shocked to have found this hidden gem in Boca Raton. A tiny restaurant with big flavors. Michelin-style dining. A must!
Vienna Cafe & Wine Bar in Davie. Off State Road 84. In a strip mall. Three strikes? Not even close. I love the salads and any “schnitzel” listed on the menu. The Frikadeller is not too shabby either. Oh, and the desserts too! Give this one a try once, and it will become a favorite forever.