By Danielle Charbonneau

The Pompano Beach Chamber of Commerce’s 2018 Pompano Beach Fine Food & Wine Celebration will gather some of the city’s finest culinary institutions, craft brewers and wine distributors for one night dedicated to pleasing the palate. This year the celebration will also feature a Champagne fountain, live entertainment, raffles for prizes, silent, Chinese and live auctions.

If delectable food and fine wine isn’t enough to draw you in, then perhaps a charitable heart will. In addition to benefiting the Pompano Beach Chamber of Commerce, some of this year’s festival proceeds will benefit the Greater Pompano Beach Education Foundation, which directly supports Broward County public schools. Here is your guide to this year’s participating businesses.

WHERE: Sheraton Suites Fort Lauderdale at Cypress Creek, 555 NW 62nd St., Fort Lauderdale
WHEN: Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2018 from 6 to 9pm
TICKETS: $75/pp in advance; $85/pp at the door; includes complimentary valet parking

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Chef Troy Beasley | Pompano Beach House

The opening of the Pompano Beach House was quite possibly the most anticipated restaurant opening the city has seen in decades. Located in the planned Fisherman’s Village, the Beach House is one major part of the city’s plan to revitalize the beach. The restaurant opened in March and cost roughly $6.5 million to build.

The company behind the Beach House is the Brimstone Restaurant Group (BRG), best known for their Brimstone Woodfire Grill restaurants in Pembroke Pines and Doral. BRG acquired a 45 year lease from the City of Pompano Beach to build the Beach House, which is a modern, two-story building on the sand.

On the first floor, the main dining room offers a near-panoramic view of the beach. On the second floor is a chic and trendy cocktail bar with giant, circular, tiered booths overlooking the ocean. The entire restaurant is modern, yet earthy and slightly rustic — reclaimed beach wood panels line some of the walls, old boat ropes dangle copper light fixtures with Edison bulbs, fishing nets and wooden boat oars are spotted throughout the design and an artistic grass wall hangs near the entrance. The decor gives honor to the restaurant’s seaside location.

At the helm of the Beach House kitchen is Executive Chef Troy Beasley who has worked for BRG for seven years. Before joining BRG, Chef Beasley worked for Darden Restaurants at Seasons 52, and for Houston’s Restaurants for 16 years. As a Houston’s trainer for eleven of those 16, Beasley helped open Houston’s locations in DC, California, Arizona, Kansas, New York City, Texas and Florida. At each new restaurant, in each new city, Beasley said he soaked up fresh styles of cooking and learned better techniques for managing his kitchens. Traveling, he said, has made him more adaptable and creative.

“I’m like a chameleon,” he said.

Chef Beasley’s versatility aided him in co-creating the Beach House menu with BRG’s Director of Culinary, Rick Schwager, and BRG’s owners, JR, Jeff and Anders Anderson. The menu is one part Caribbean, one part Southern, one part steakhouse and a few parts seafood. Beasley’s New Orleans and Southern roots seem to be weaved into the menu at times, with elements like Creole sauce, white cheddar grits, buttermilk chicken, andouille sausage and dirty rice. Caribbean flavors are spotted with ingredients like pineapple, grilled mango and crispy plantains. The ocean is well-represented with sushi, raw oysters and fresh fish; while land is honored with juicy steaks. The Anderson family’s extensive world travel experience aided the BRG team in crafting a globally-influenced menu.

Some of Chef Beasley’s personal favorite entrées are the “Drunken Rib Eye” (a ribeye steak with Hawaiian marinade topped with pineapple salsa and served with Parmesan potatoes), the “Walk the Cedar Plank Salmon” (cooked on a cedar plank and topped with whole-grain mustard butter), the bacon-wrapped scallops (served with dirty rice and a tequila lime cream sauce) and the “Beachy Shrimp and Grits” (jumbo white shrimp served with stone-ground white cheddar grits served in a light, Creole sauce with ham, asparagus and corn salsa).

The most Creole-inspired of the dishes — the shrimp and grits — is surprisingly not Chef Beasley’s creation, but Schwager’s recipe. Still, it is one of Beasley’s favorites.

“It’s a great recipe. It’s really tasty and has a lot of flavor profiles,” he said. “Flavor is what I’m all about. I’m not that chef that stays on one plate for ten minutes to make it really pretty and fancy. I concentrate on the taste. I just want food to taste really, really good.”

Beasley said this desire — to bring a depth of flavor to every dish — comes from his soulful grandmother. As a child, growing up in New Orleans, Beasley helped his grandmother cook. She earned her living running a prepared meal business from her home, cooking up huge pots of food to provide meals for local churches, schools, barber shops, neighborhoods and beauty salons. Beasley remembers his childhood with her well.

“I used to stand on little milk crates because I wasn’t tall enough and would watch her cook,” Beasley said. “She baked. She did a lot of pot cooking. She fried. What was really unique for my grandmother was she didn’t really measure anything. I used to see her put her hands in and take seasonings and flours and just throw stuff in.”

Beasley’s experience with his grandmother pushed him to pursue work in kitchens young. He started as a bus boy at 14 years old and in just a few years worked his way up to a line supervisor position at Copelan’s Restaurant on St. Charles St. While Beasley received no formal culinary education (he earned degrees in computers and business administration), he worked in restaurants throughout his schooling and, luckily for Pompano Beach, never left the kitchen.

Beasley has high hopes for the Beach House’s future.

“We started out here with a bang,” he said. “I hope we continue that trend.”

The Pompano Beach House is located at 270 N. Pompano Beach Blvd. For more information visit beachhousepompano.com or call 954-607-6530.

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Chef ” Pasquale” | Trattoria Novello

Tucked in the center of the east Atlantic Blvd. plaza between the Foundry and CaféMaxx, Trattoria Novello is poised to be a central part of Pompano Beach’s seaside re-birth. At the heart of Trattoria Novello is Chef Patrick Solarino — or Chef “Pasquale” as he goes by (a name derived from his grandfather). Chef Pasquale’s fervent belief in using fresh ingredients (so fresh some are grown in his own home garden) and authentic Italian imported products is truly what sets Trattoria Novello apart from the roughly two dozen other Italian restaurants in Pompano Beach.

Chef Pasquale grew up in Montreal, Canada in an Italian family whose connection, heart and soul was built in the kitchen.

“My grandmother and my grandfather were always in the kitchen doing something,” Chef Pasquale said. “My grandfather was always the farmer — he would get tomatoes and fresh cow’s milk. We’d go foraging for wild mushrooms. And always at home, my grandmother was making fresh pastas, cookies and food.

“My grandparents were poor, but always used fresh ingredients, hand-picked from the garden. The backyard had no grass — it was all garden and trees. We used to have hundreds of rows of tomato plants and celery and carrots — you name it, and we had it in the garden.”

Limoncello Tiramisu, photo by Kim Kahn

Chef Pasquale has carried this spirit with him. He imports products like olive oil, pistachio cream, cheeses, pastas and even water from Italy. He makes his own gnocchi, ravioli, bucatini and occasionally spaghetti, and butchers his own meats. His limoncello tiramisu, panna cotta and pistachio cannoli are homemade.

Some of Trattoria Novello’s dishes are derived from Chef Pasquale’s own childhood. While his family is from Southern Italy and much of the Trattoria Novello menu reflects that heritage, Chef Pasquale has intentionally crafted a menu with dishes from all regions of Italy.

“A lot of restaurants in the area focus on their main region where they are from, and I don’t like that. There’s more to work with,” he said. “I want to say this respectfully — I’m not an American Italian restaurant — you won’t find garlic rolls or fettuccine Alfredo here. It’s mostly traditional dishes — really traditional Italian dishes, sourced from Italy.”

Some of the dishes, he said, Italians are not even familiar with.

“A lot of the food I do is not known in Italy. It’s considered peasant food. Whatever you had that day, you put together and you make,” he said.

The emphasis is on quality, freshness and oftentimes simplicity. Chef Pasquale said his top-selling dish is his branzino, which is simply grilled with the skin on.

“People go crazy for it,” he said. “I also have items on my menu that Americans are not familiar with. Once they try them here in my restaurant, I open up their mind.”

These ingredients include tripe and some wild game meats, such as rabbit and wild boar.

Beyond the food, Chef Pasquale and his wife, Kim Kahn, (who can be seen welcoming guests in the front of the house on the weekends and does the restaurant’s social media and photography) have attempted to create an atmosphere every bit as welcoming as Pasquale’s family home.

“Growing up our doors were never locked,” he said. “Neighbors and family would just walk in. We always had food on the table, and drinks and coffee. That’s the kind of atmosphere I like here. We have personal relationships with our customers. A lot of them are repeats, and the new ones that come in, we make feel at home.”

Trattoria Novello is located at 2665 W. Atlantic Blvd. in Pompano Beach. For more information visit trattorianovello.com or call 954-876-1915.

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Casa Calabria’s charcuterie

The Talerico Family | Casa Calabria

Calabria is a majestic, old-world city at the extreme southern tip of Italy — at the toe of the boot into the Mediterranean. Calabria is internationally known for its salumeria’s and fine aged deli meats, such as soppressata, hard sausage and prosciutto, as well as many fresh and hard cheeses. Calabrian cooking strikes a harmonious balance between meat-based dishes, fish, herbs and rustic vegetables, such as eggplant.

The Talerico brothers and sisters behind Casa Calabria — an oceanside Italian restaurant located in the Ocean Manor Resort in Fort Lauderdale — were all born in Calabria. Their father “Papalo” was a land owner, shepherd and goat herder. His occupation was making fresh ricotta and mozzarella cheese for most of the village.

Every Fall, the Talerico family made a hundred gallons of homemade wine in their garage. Homemade sausage, soppressata and prosciutto hung from the rafters of the basement cellar. The family jarred their own tomato sauce, made fresh pasta and harvested vegetables from “Papalo’s” gardens. Every Sunday, the home’s dining tables were lined with Mamma’s fresh baked bread and pastries. Food was synonymous with family.

The Talerico’s rich heritage is showcased in both Casa Calabria’s atmosphere and menu. The dining room pays homage to the family’s rustic home — exposed bricks, candle chandeliers and a wood-paneled ceiling lead to windows that frame a beautiful view of the ocean. A red piano sits on the edge of the dining room where live music is played. Old photos of the Talerico parents and Calabrian villages adorn the walls. And the menu is primarily derived from Talerico family recipes. Casa Calabria imports many of their ingredients directly from Calabria.

Starting with the anipasto plate with speck, pecorino and Gorgonzola, served with a wedge of cantaloupe, grapes and caramelized onion, is a great way to transport one’s palate to Southern Italy. Sipping an earthy red wine while dipping crusty bread into extra virgin olive oil is equally soul satisfying. Lobster ravioli, linguine ai frutti di mare, the Branzio Del Mediterraneo or grilled octopus are great choices for sea lovers, while filet mignon and the veal chops cater to the more meat-oriented diner.

Casa Calabria is located at 4040 Galt Ocean Drive inside the Ocean Manor Resort. Call 954-982-2191 or visit casacalabriaftl.com for more information.

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Chef Oliver Saucy of Cafe Maxx

Chef Oliver Saucy | Café Maxx

It has probably been said before, but celebrity Chef Oliver Saucy has the perfect name. His culinary creations are absolutely “saucy” — they’re creative, colorful, multi-cultural and have an emphasis on local seafood and produce. Whether it’s Atlantic hogfish snapper, fruits and citruses from the tropics, Creole spices from New Orleans, zesty Cuban herbs or chilies from Mexico, Chef Saucy draws inspiration from South Florida’s surrounding cultures. By letting ingredients drive the plate, Chef Saucy keeps things fresh for both his guests and himself. His creativity though, he said, can never be overshadowed by proper technique.

“At the end of the day, if you can’t put it all together with the French and Mediterranean roots I grew up studying, it just doesn’t work,” said Saucy. “One culture, one plate. We don’t want to get too confusing or it takes your red wine drinker right off the table. That’s the bread and butter for us – the red wine drinker.”

This blend of classic technique and innovative ideas is what Chef Saucy and Café Maxx is known for. It has made Café Maxx a Pompano Beach culinary destination for almost three decades. Saucy has been at the helm for almost as long. In 1988, Saucy co-purchased Café Maxx with the restaurant’s general manager Darrel Broek. The dynamic duo has run the restaurant ever since. Broek’s hospitable charm welcomes guests in the front of the house, while Saucy’s creations make them salivate at the table.

To keep the menu balanced, Chef Saucy breaks it down into thirds: one third is classic, so regulars know what to expect; another third is standard proteins prepared with seasonal ingredients; and the last is where Chef Saucy gets to be creative.

“The other third is whatever exciting thing we can get our hands on — whatever we feel like doing,” said Saucy. “We try to get the best available ingredients all the time.”

Sometimes those ingredients can include fresh fish straight from the boat. Other times a vibrant produce item from a local farmer, or a fine cut of meat.

Saucy is proud to carry local ingredients. He showcases his proteins in a display case on the edge of the dining room, which he dubs the “Raw Buffet.”

After almost three decades of cooking, Saucy still exudes passion. Perhaps it runs thick in his blood; He learned his first fundamental cooking techniques watching his father in action as the Executive Chef in a resort kitchen nestled in the back of a medieval German Castle in the Black Forest region of New York.

“I grew up eating all kinds of crazy stuff. It would be like, ‘oh what did you have for dinner?’ ‘Oh, we had calves brains’,” said Saucy laughing.

As a young adult, Saucy studied at the prestigious Culinary Institute of America (CIA) in Hyde Park where his father also taught for 28 years. Saucy’s son worked in the Café Maxx kitchen for two years and has also studied at CIA.

Saucy has passed on his skills to non-relatives, too. For the 20th Anniversary of Café Maxx, 26 of Saucy’s protégés, who now run kitchens all over the country, came to congratulate him and thank him for his mentorship. For over 20 years Saucy has also been teaching cooking courses at Café Maxx during the summer months when the restaurant slows.

“The biggest class we had was 99 people. Holy moly,” said Saucy.

At the end of Saucy’s classes — which include topics like grilling meats, cooking lobster, or Mediterranean technique — Saucy serves a four to five course dinner, plus dessert with the recipes he taught.

“The classes bring a lot of energy in here. It’s a lot of fun,” said Saucy. “It’s relationship building.”

So what’s next for Chef Saucy and Café Maxx?

“You know I think it’s just to keep the focus on making quality food,” said Saucy. “That never goes out of style.”

Café Maxx is located at 2601 E. Atlantic Blvd. in Pompano Beach. Visit cafemaxx.com or call 954 782-0606 for more information.

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Pompano Beach Fine Food & Wine 2018 Participating Restaurants and Vendors

Another Perfect Party

After 25 years working as a corporate trainer for a large restaurant chain, Sharon Rebuck, started Another Perfect Party, an all-inclusive, off-premise, upscale catering company. Another Perfect Party offers complete party planning from start to finish, including rentals, custom menus, decor, entertainment and professional mixology. A team of seasoned event designers and Executive Chef Alessandro Broia will help you with every detail. From Italy, Chef Alessandro studied and graduated from I.P.S.S.A.R. “G. Magnaghi” in Parma, Italy. He was classically trained by Luciano Pavarotti and has worked throughout Italy and Europe. With over 50 years of combined experience in the catering industry, Rebuck and Broja capably manage events ranging from corporate luncheons, weddings and holiday parties, to plated dinners, butlered hors d’oeuvres, tapas and delectable dessert bars.

Another Perfect Party is located at 143 S. Cypress Rd. in Pompano Beach. For more information visit anotherperfectparty.com or call 954- 586-4542.

Aroma Joe’s

Aroma Joe’s says its goal every day is to “fuel your world and make sure everyone leaves a little happier.” The company said it strives to serve positive energy alongside their beverages. The franchise has three “laws of service” — no intercoms, no mistakes and no attitudes. Some notable coffee drinks include the Northreester (vanilla, white chocolate and coconut), the Perfect Cloud (a hint of hazelnut and marshmallow) and the Roo Cookie (caramel, white chocolate and a hint of cinnamon). In addition to coffee drinks, Aroma Joe’s serves their signature Rush energy drinks, which are available blended, or over ice. Rush drinks come in six fruity flavors, including black jack, sweet-n-tart, rock-it pop, beach bum, blue Hawaiian and green alien. If you crave something more classic, Aroma Joe’s carries their own “Travel the World” coffees with beans from around the globe.

Aroma Joe’s is located at 1450 S. Powerline Rd. in Pompano Beach. For more information visit aromajoes.com or call 954-532-0596

John Knox Village

John Knox Village is a Life Plan Retirement Community encompassing a full range of independent living, assisted living and skilled nursing care options for more than 1,000 residents. Since 1967, John Knox Village has been home to an eclectic mix of “realistic idealists” who believe in planning for an uncertain future while enjoying a fulfilling present. Enjoying the present includes delectable food in John Knox’s eatery. At the helm is Executive Chef Mark Gullusci, who received his Culinary Arts degree from the prestigious Johnson & Wales University in Providence, RI.

“People are always blown away by the foods prepared by our team because people often have a preconceived notion that because we are a life plan retirement community we do not have delicious and inventive menu items,” said John Knox’s Communications Manager Rob Seitz. “John Knox Village is not your Grandmother’s retirement community, and that is reflected in the meals enjoyed every day by our residents.”

John Knox Village is located at 651 Village Drive in Pompano Beach

Benson’s Bakeshop

Benson’s belief is “you can always afford to make life a little bit sweeter.” The woman behind the bakeshop is Shanna Benson. As a kid, Shanna always dreamed of having a cupcake shop, but life kept her grinding the nine-to-five to make ends meet. Then one day she had enough and decided to embrace her passion and make things happen for herself.

In January 2017, Shanna created Benson’s Bakeshop. Shanna sells her decadent cupcakes for $25 per dozen of regular cupcakes and $35 per dozen of specialty cupcakes. The cupcakes are available in 19 flavors including pumpkin spice latte, lemon lavender, chocolate-covered strawberry, banana split and s’mores. If you don’t find a flavor you like, Shanna will make you something custom. Delivery is available.

Visit her on Facebook, Instagram or call her at 954-612-1035.

Bobby Rubino’s

Full racks of glazed and smoky baby back ribs, with just the right amount of chewiness and fall-off-the-bone, finger-licking goodness. Juicy chicken cordon bleu with homemade mushroom gravy. Slow-roasted, tender prime rib with au jus and horseradish sauce with a bite. Fresh fried trout. These are just a few of the savory and delectable options to try at Bobby Rubinos Place for Ribs, South Florida’s premier place for ribs, BBQ and homestyle cooking since 1978.

Guests can take out, or dine in. The atmosphere in the dining room is cozy, friendly and a little old-school. Live music is performed on Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday starting at 5:30pm. Happy Hour is all day and night — $3.50 for well drinks, $3.50 for house wines and $2.50 draft beer. Bobby Runino’s also offers catering.

Bobby Rubinos is located at 2501 N. Federal Highway in Pompano Beach. For more information visit BobbyRubinos.com or call 954- 781-7550.

Coccadotts Cake Shop

The story behind Coccadotts has all the makings of a Meg Ryan romantic comedy. The scene is Albany, New York. Boy meets girl and falls in love. Boy runs Dott’s Garage, an auto and towing shop on a busy urban street. Girl runs the attached mini market and bakery. His last name is Dott, hers is Cocca. Together, they create Coccadotts, the birth-child bakery of gourmet cupcakes. This is the real life story of Rachel Cocca and Luke Dott, who started Coccadotts bakery in Albany in 2007. Since then, Coccadotts has expanded, opening a second shop in Myrtle Beach, and a third in Ft. Lauderdale, which opened in May 2017.

If the name Coccadotts sounds familiar, you may have seen the bakery on Food Network’s reality television series “Cupcake Wars.” Coccadotts competed in the competition three times (in 2010, 2012 and 2013). On their final appearance, Coccadotts survived three rounds of competition to win first place and $10,000.

Early every morning a baker can be found at Coccadotts mixing, baking, filling, frosting and decorating every cupcake before putting them in the display case, which boasts over 30 flavors. There’s the “Cannoli Cupcake” (an almond cupcake, iced in sweet cannoli buttercream, garnished with crushed cannoli shells, chocolate chips and a chocolate-dipped cannoli ), the “Banana Pudding” (a vanilla cupcake with wafer baked into the bottom, banana custard filling and a banana buttercream frosting), or the “S’mores” (with graham cracker and marshmallow). The cupcakes are whimsical, decadent and colorful.

Coccadotts is located at 6280 N. Federal Highway in Ft. Lauderdale. For more information visit coccadotts.com or call 954-990-5034.

Delacaseas Cafe

Delacaseas is a darling little beach cafe on Bougainvilla Dr. in Lauderdale By The Sea. With only a few small tables, each adorned with a variety of country-patterned and lace table clothes, surrounded by assorted vintage chairs of different shapes and sizes, the cafe feels instantly charming, vintage and a touch country. The black-and-white tiled floor, antique china cabinet, hand-painted tea sets and sea trinkets displayed on the walls adds to this feel, as does the fresh-baked pie and large bowl of fresh tomatoes on the back counter.

This local’s favorite serves a great breakfast, including Challah bread french toast with Vermont maple syrup, eggs Benedict and steak and eggs (with 8 ounces of New York Strip, eggs, homefries and toast).

Lunch and dinner here are also a treat. Some notable dishes include Delacaseas’ smoked fish dip, the Manchengo and mushroom risotto and the pork tenderloin in a cranberry reduction. Warm foccacia bread is served before dinner and the relaxed environment makes Delacaseas is a great place to catch up with a friend or lover over a glass of wine.

Delacaseas is located at 4404 Bougainvilla Dr., Lauderdale by the Sea. For more information visit delacaseas.com or call 954-958-0907.

Hoffman’s Chocolates

Chocolate doesn’t get much better than Hoffman’s. Smooth, creamy and decadent, Hoffman’s has truly perfected the art of chocolate making. In 1975 Paul Hoffman purchased a small candy shop in Lake Worth. His goal was to start a business that combined his two great loves: homemade chocolate and spending time with his family. He did that, and so much more. Hoffman’s now has nine chocolate and ice cream shops. Hoffman’s is dedicated to using only the best ingredients and century-old chocolate making traditions.

Hoffman’s offers free factory tours at Hoffman’s Chocolates Factory, Shoppe & Gardens, located at 5190 Lake Worth Road in Greenacres. Tours are Mondays and Wednesdays at 10am and 1pm. The Boca Raton Hoffman’s Chocolates is located at 5250 Town Center Circle, Suite 135. For more information visit hoffmans.com.

Marriott Pompano Beach Resort & Spa

Picture yourself with a chilled martini on an open-air patio facing both the ocean and a picturesque, palm-lined pool. A contemporary plate skillfully prepared with local, fresh seafood entices your taste buds. You can watch the moon rise over the ocean and feel like you’re on vacation. Dining is both indoor and out, with service to the beach as well. No matter your personal choice of atmosphere, the McCoy’s oceanfront restaurant at the Marriott Pompano Beach Resort & Spa will deliver the ocean on your plate.

“I work with my sources to get the best South Florida fish in here every day,” said Executive Chef Eric Kaszubinski.

The restaurant specializes in local seafood and is named after the famous run-runner Bill McCoy.

The bar features prohibition-era inspired drinks including “Bathtub Gin” and “The Blind Pig.” Happy hour is daily from 5pm-7pm and features beer, wine, cocktail and appetizer specials.

Marriott Pompano Beach Resort & Spa is located at 1200 N. Ocean Blvd. in Pompano Beach. To make a reservation call 954- 944-9515.

Legends Tavern & Grille

This “legendary” bar and grill has 19 starters to choose from, including Parmesan truffle fries, escargot stuffed mushrooms, loaded potato skins and a massive nacho plate. The laid-back, but lively joint is a fantastic place to throw back some cold ones and eat some greasy food. With eight salads on the menu, 17 sandwiches, burgers, wings, short ribs, steak, lobster mac and cheese and a whole lot more, Legends is also a great place to feast for dinner. Craft beer Thursdays, 75-cent wing night Tuesdays, whiskey Wednesdays and other food and drink specials await the hungry and thirsty.

The Lighthouse Point Legends is located at 3128 N. Federal Highway. For more information visit legendstavernandgrille.com or call 754-220-8932.

Lighthouse Point Yacht Club

The Lighthouse Point Yacht Club is a private club with marina facilities, tennis courts, a fitness center, spa, heated junior Olympic size pool, tiki bar and private restaurant. The elegant dining space and bar gives way to a picturesque back patio. On a nice day, the patio is an idyllic place to eat lunch or sip refreshing afternoon cocktails. The club also hosts many black-tie affairs, charity fundraisers and weddings.

The Lighthouse Point Yacht Club is located at 2701 NE 42 St., Lighthouse Point. If you are interested in membership, visit lhpyc.com or call 954-942-7244.

Miami Masala

Miami Masala takes great pride in crafting traditional Indian dishes layered rich with flavor, spice and soul. The restaurant has all the classics — from tikka masala, to vindaloo, korma and curry — plus some out-of-the norm, such as Kochi Meen Varuval, a spicy fish marinated in a unique blend of southern spices. Get ready to feast if you visit during one of Miami Masala’s lunch or weekend buffets, which feature over two dozen dishes. Whether you are a meat lover or a hardcore vegan, the menu has something for everyone.

Miami Masala is located at  900 E. Atlantic Blvd., Pompano Beach. Visit miamimasala.com or call 954-317-1371.

Pump Sushi & Thai Cuisine

Located in Lauderdale By the Sea, this small sushi and Thai restaurant packs a punch. The sushi menu is extensive — 9 specialty rolls, 18 classic rolls, six hand rolls and some combination platters. For the non-sushi lovers, there’s tempura, classic Thai entrées and teriyaki on the menu. The restaurant has only about a half dozen tables, plus about ten bar seats. Pump is situated on the corner of Commercial and Sea Grape Drive, just a short walk from the beach and all the Lauderdale By The Sea nightlife.

Pump Sushi & Thai is located at 222 Commercial Blvd., Suite 105, Lauderdale By The Sea. For more information visit pumpsushi.com or call 954-909-5566.

Chef Lenore Nolan RyanWorld Class Catering & Cooking School

The Lenore Nolan Ryan Catering & Cooking School is an inventive and inviting culinary destination on the Galt Ocean Mile in Fort Lauderdale. Chef Ryan offers an enticing array of events including weekly themed pop-up dinners, bubbles and brunch Sundays, wine and tapas tastings and hands-on cooking classes. For over 30 years, Lenore’s core business and passion has been catering. Her reputation as a chef, caterer and culinary event planner has produced a loyal following.

The Lenore Nolan Ryan Catering & Cooking School is located in the Galt Ocean Plaza at 3311 N. Ocean Blvd in Fort Lauderdale. For more information visit lenorenolanryan.com or call 954-491-2340.

SeaWatch on the Ocean

Opened in 1974, Sea Watch on the Ocean in Lauderdale By The Sea has a legacy in South Florida. The seafood restaurant located, as the name suggests, on the ocean, has a gorgeous view of palm trees, grass and sand. The dining room has exposed wooden beams and walls of windows that honor the natural oceanside environment, while remaining modern and elegant. The menu is rather timeless — seafood classics such as orange roughy with a dill chardonnay sauce, blackened mahi mahi with cajun spices and a tomatillo pineapple salsa and fresh steamed lobster. If one craves fresh seafood and ocean air, SeaWatch on the Ocean is a sure bet.

SeaWatch on the Ocean is located at 6002 N. Ocean Blvd., Lauderdale By The Sea. For more information visit seawatchontheocean.com or call 954-781-2200.

Sette Bello

Born in Palermo, Sicily, and raised in an Italian New York family, Sette Bello’s Executive Chef Franco Filippone, is most certainly an authentic Italian chef.

“Eating for us was always a way of life,” said Chef Franco. Sette Bello Ristorante has earned numerous awards including the American Academy of Hospitality Sciences’ Five-Star Diamond Award, Zagat guide award and a Wine Spectator award of excellence.

Sette Bello is known for its gourmet Italian food, made from scratch and finished with culinary precision and artistry.

Sette Bello is located at 6241 N. Federal Highway in Fort Lauderdale. For more information visit settebellofla.com or call 954- 351-0505.

Sicilian Oven

Ralph DiSalvo and his business partner Andrew Garavuso created the Sicilian Oven menu to include recipes passed down from generations of both their Italian families. Both DiSalvo and Garavuso are deeply passionate about food.

“We do this because we love it,” said DiSalvo. “You will not only love the taste, you will taste the love.”

Garavuso echoed DiSalvo’s sentiment: “One of the most gratifying things in life is eating a great meal. For my partner Ralph and I, we feel like there is nothing better than creating that meal for one of our guests.”

The Sicilian Oven prides itself on using fresh and handmade ingredients.

Sicilian Oven is located at 2486 N. Federal Highway in Pompano Beach. For more information visit sicilianoven.com or call 954-785-4155.

Spanx The Hog

Visit this BBQ house and saloon for some authentic, smokin’ BBQ. Wings, baby back ribs, pulled pork, smoked meats, mac ’n’ cheese, fried okra, sweet corn nuggets, fried spicy dill pickles and five different kinds of cheesesteaks are just a few of the highlights on the Spanx The Hog menu. The fun and rustic decor adds to the experience — wood paneled walls, old oak barrels and tables made of old wooden cable spools. With multiple flat screens, Spanx The Hog is a great place to watch sporting events. Take out, limited delivery and catering are all available.

Spanx The Hog is located at 147 S. Cypress Rd., Pompano Beach. For more information visit spanxthehot.com of call 954-590-8342.


While Yakuza has been recognized for its innovative sushi by chef and owner Jay Areechot, until last year the Thai cuisine had been a bit run-of-the-mill (the usual fried rice, pad Thai and curry). In the middle of last year, however, Yakuza hired an impressive chef who has upped the restaurant’s Thai game.

While Jay continues to dominate the sushi station, Chef Pirun Pumicome runs Yakuza’s hot kitchen. Chef Pumicome has an impressive resume — he served as the Executive Chef at the Four Seasons hotels in Chiang Mai, Bangkok and Samui, Thailand, and as the Executive Chef for the Anantara Hotel Resort and Spa in Dubai.

“We want to present things that make people go ‘Wow. This is something I could only get in a five-star restaurant or hotel,” said restaurant co-owner Mini Areechot. “The goal is to bring Pompano high-end dishes at an affordable price. .”

Yakuza is located at 2515 E. Atlantic Blvd., Pompano Beach. For more information visit yakuzapompano.com or call 954- 951-6077.



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This post was prepared by staff at Point! Publishing. For inquiries call 954-603-4553.

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