Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Canyon Southwest Cafe - Florida Southwest Cafe
1818 e. Sunrise Blvd.
Fort Lauderdale, Fl
954 765 1950

I'm always up for trying new restaurants. Canyon's in Fort Lauderdale serves up sophisticated and modern Southwest cuisine - some of the best I've ever eaten.  I love the flavors and its so unfortunate that Southwestern isn't that popular in Montreal like it is in the US.

Move over Bobby Flay! (I'm serious)

Now, these guys absolutely, under no circumstances take reservations. They are well worth the wait and I'd do it again week after week. 
Both times we went, we were told that there is a 40 minute wait but I did not wait for more than 25 minutes. Here at Canyon, it's small and packed with a hip atmosphere. They have a crowded or "cozy" bar area (as it is affectionately described), where patrons often enjoy the signature drink The Prickly Pear Margarita. Prickly Pears are Cactus Pears - Google 'em. Anyway, I loved it! It was fuity and pink with that salty/sour rim.  This nice couple walked in - looked like regulars - They started some small talk with us and urged us to try this drink! They ordered two at a time for themselves...yes, they had 4 Prickly Pear Margaritas for themselves at one, we tried them..Geez, they must be good!!  and ...just 'cause they're pink and fruity doesn't mean that its exclusively a girly drink. All the men were having one too! There's tequila in there you know ;)

The cuisine is modern southwestern with asian, south + central american influences.

We tried a variety of dishes since we went there twice..:)

As appetizers we had the :
-Blue Corn fried Oysters with Cilantro Cream - Only the interiors were served, no shell They were breaded with blue corn flour - crispy and the cilantro cream just added to the wonderful, light "new" flavor.
-Sweet and Spicy Calamari with thai honey dressing- they were great. The sweet and salty flavor, with a hint of Thai inspired spice!
-Finally...the best thing on the menu!! Comal Grilled Red Chile Chicken Tostada with grilled chicken, goat cheese crumbles, caramelized Bermuda onion , all topped with baby arugula, avocado, serrano chile, white truffle crema! OH!!!!! The flavors were so distinct, so clear! It was a real party in my mouth! The goat cheese and arugula, the sweetness of the onion , the cool avocado..all served on a crispy corn had everything you would want in a dish -  incredible guys.

Some great main courses:

Beef Tenderloin Tip Burrito , very tender- with red chili sauce, red pepper, mushroom, Bermuda onions and Mozzarella.
Comal Grilled Black Florida Grouper, served with swiss chard and potato mash, Chipotle cherry tomato chutney.
and finally, there's always someone in my gang who orders the Filet mignon and as usual, it did not dissapoint! - served with poblano pesto (ai-ya ya!) , goat cheese, zinfandel sauce, micro cilantro chive potato. 
     *ai-ya ya - A Mexican exclamation of glee 

We had a side of Yucca sticks. Yucca is a veggie that has a similar texture to a potato. So it was kinda' like Yucca fries. I had never had them before and they were a great change- They were just a little more firm than potato fries.

We didn't have dessert because we really overate but next time I go I will surely have the Chocolate Bread Pudding..can you imagine??

Enjoy Canyon guys!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Anthony's Coal Fired Pizza

Anthony's Coal Fired Pizza
17901 Biscayne Blvd.
Aventura, FL 33160
305.830.COAL (2625)

Oh my goodness! Oh my goodness! Oh my goodness!

I cannot even put into words how great this place was..They're motto is "Pizza - well done" and it suuuuuure is.

Book your flight, pack your bags...make your way to Anthony's !

They don't take reservations and are packed every single night of the week! There is a 20 minute wait but its well worth it,let me tell you.

Their pizza is on the "well cooked" side literally.  The crust is traditional (not too thin) and crispy. The dough was honestly great on its own..The reason I know this is because my fiance, Andre has a funny way of eating his pizza. He eats the cheese and toppings first and eats the bare crust last..He was like, " try this crust , you won't believe it..try it !!" He was right! The coal-fire must enhance the flavor.

They have the traditional pizza as well as a few special ones like, meatball pizza and arugula pizza, broccoli and sausage pizza, fresh mozzarella and tomato...and many more....

What to eat at Anthony's:

-Pizza - Duhhh

-Anthony's italian Salad - big enough to share

-Side order of Sausage and Broccoli Rabe - wonderful...just wonderful..Both times we went, my dad kept saying..."ohhh just add some pasta to this and it would be even better....just add pasta....." lol

-Side order of Meatballs served with a side of ricotta and fresh basil leaves (They were like my mother's meatballs. Even SHE said it was like her meatballs!! )

**Beware! Side orders are really big and can be shared between 2 to 3 people.
Visit their web site and check out their menu....

Barton G. The Restaurant

Barton G. The Restaurant
1427 West Avenue
Miami Beach, FLA
(305) 672-8881

Now....This was a fun place! In fact, it was so fun, we went twice.
Barton G has a vibrant bar scene so make sure to have a drink while you wait for your table! You'll most surely have to wait a little because this place is packed every night including Monday and Tuesday..they never rest.

At Barton G. you'll find partons of all ages, from young, hot and single to couples and even some families with kids. However, don't let the fact that there are a few families with children give you the impression that place is not "happening". It is! I don't know why but it does not affect the vibe at all!!  This ain't no TGI Fridays! The food is exquisite and the atmosphere is hip.

The menu is extensive including a really interesting cocktail list including their signature Sub-Zero Martinis. The cocktail arrives with "smoke" billowing out of it, like dry ice. The martini itself is partially frozen so its not like regular ice...its the alcohol that's actually frozen so it stays really cold 'til the very end and your drink never tastes watered down - Must try!

The menu items have interesting names...they intregued me so much that I wanted to order everything! For example...the "Disco Grouper" or the "Lobster Pop-tarts". Then, when we got our orders, we realized that it wsn't only the names that were special..Check this out:

The lobster and cheese pop-tarts were served in a toaster - cute, eh? They were excellent.
Lobster and Gruyere in a lovely flakey crust, served with a trio of sauces - Hallandaise, Brandy Tarragon and Lemon Caper.

My Disco Grouper. It was pan seared black grouper with sweet curry and brioche panade, sauteed arugula, cherry tomatoes and grilled Honshimiji mushrooms...There were actually different colored lights under the dish , giving it a disco look :)


So not only do the dishes served at Barton G look good and sound good, they taste even better!

My fish was tasty and perfectly cooked..the next time I went I had filet mignon and it was perfect too. I got a little gravy boat shaped like a so cute. Oh, they had a great wine list too! You can't pass up the chance to try this place. You'll have a blast.

Devito - South Beach - Florida

Restaurant Devito South Beach
150 Ocean Drive
South Beach, Florida
(305) 531-0911

Hello Everyone!

I didn't know what to expect from this restaurant. Danny Devito is the owner...seemed pricey, the menu was interesting but very long. Meaning, that there were too many different things on the menu and not all Italian.  I honestly thought it would be commercial. I really wanted to go because my father bears a striking resemblance to Mr. Devito himself. Its no joke - we get stopped everywhere! I guess I was expecting a reaction from the patrons or staff. However this was the one place that he got absolutely NO attention! It makes sense if you think about it 'cause, they've seen the "real Danny" more than once! However when we went to Joe's Stone Crab, people sitting accross the bar asked the bartender if my dad was Danny Devito and he said "yes, but don't go up to him, he doesn't like that" lol too funny!

Anyway, the restaurant was striking - brick walls, television screens built into the wall , framed like a painting, showing classic black and white movies; beautiful marble tables.. but best of all everything we ate was to die for so I was definitely proved wrong about this place. The terrace was really beautiful too. I would have loved to eat there but it was too cold for me that night.

I had the Burrata Mozzarella
Charred Roma tomatoes, basil salsa, grilled eggplant, crostini as a starter which is a fresh Italian cheese, made from mozzarella and cream.

My mom had the Sicilian Crab Cake - which was one of the best I've ever tried.
Jumbo lump crab, tomato, arugula, garlic aioli, chili vinaigrette, they were really great!

Andre had the 2 Big Eye Tuna and Foie Gras Tacos with Chipotle aioli

As you can see from the picture above, even the cutlery was beautiful.

For my main I had Rigatoni - Sunday Gravy
Meatball, sausage, country ribs, San Marzano gravy,whipped ricotta. This really hit the spot! I was in the mood for comfort food.

Andre had the 12 Ounce Barrel Cut Filet with a side of fries It was perfectly cooked.

My sister had the Four Cheese Pear Tortelloni
Pear, Mascarpone, Ricotta, Pecorino, truffle, Zambagiano, Parmigiano. It was great, the slight sweetness of the pear went so well with the creamy, cheesy sauce.

The dessert was super fun. This is the new thing, it seems, to have fair, cotton candy, cheese cake lollipops and mini banana zeppole. Soooo good. 

Make sure to check out the web site to view pictures of the restaurant and to view their extensive menu.

Check this place out the next time you're in the Miami area. Its a little pricey so be prepared :)