Hot Ticket Pub & Venue's cadre of chefs conjures hearty plates of pub fare in a cozy sports-bar setting. Corral wayward appetites with starters such as smoked mullet dip ($7.49) sidled up next to club crackers and bucking taste buds with the heat from sliced jalapeños. The Black Jack burger fills a toasted bakery roll with a half-pound beef patty draped in pepper jack cheese and blackening seasoning ($8.99), and Casey's classic giant tenderloin sandwich ($9.99) piles a toasted roll high with buttermilk-marinated pork tenderloin, pounded thin for greater ease in jimmying car locks. For a bit of regional flair, the southern seafood basket ($12.99) sets a duo of catfish fillets and buttermilk battered shrimp afloat in a sea of crispy fries, hush puppies, southern-style coleslaw, and fried okra. While tongues are gift-wrapped in savory comestibles, Hot Ticket indulges the rest of the senses with TVs decked out with sports broadcasts such as NFL Sunday Ticket and hosts live music Tuesday–Saturday nights.
Big Fred’s Famous Roast Beef tempts diners with a menu of hot and cold sandwiches and 11 inventive specialty burgers, and challenges ambitious eaters with the 5-pound Hurricane Fred burger. Twosomes can awaken the roast beef sandwich, whose slices of hot, extra-lean roast beef nestle in a bready bed under a blanket of sautéed onions, ringing bell peppers, cheese, and mayo. The Buccaneer burger tests the structural integrity of two 1-pound beef patties, weighing them down with ladles of barbecue sauce, stacks of cheese, layers of fresh veggies, and realistic recreations of tall ships made of bacon. The show-stealing Hurricane Fred burger stars a bite-defying 5-pound beef patty, 10 slices of cheese, 10 strips of bacon, and a coterie of lettuce, tomato, onion, and pickle. Enjoy entrees with a soda and french fries, which can be scattered on tables for impromptu games of pickup sticks.
Located along the white sand beaches on the Gulf of Mexico, Shephard's provides an idyllic locale for sun seekers, relax enthusiasts, and breathtaking-ocean-view aficionados. The studio queen room is equipped with two queen beds, a full kitchen with new stainless steel appliances, private balcony, a flat-screen TV, free WiFi, and a large updated bathroom, making it the perfect weekend getaway, romantic getaway, or getaway to watch the Charlie Sheen movie The Getaway. Shephard's amenities, such as a heated pool and jacuzzi for body soaking, the Tiki Bar for tropical concoctions and live music (every day 2 p.m.–11 p.m.), and the Sunset Lounge for dancery, make unwinding as easy as smashing open piñatas with old computer monitors.
The authentic NYC-style pies that make up the menu at Boardwalk Pizza and Gyros offer piping-hot testimony of owner and chef Dino’s lifetime of dough-slinging experience lovingly crafting pizzas in New Jersey. A large 16-inch pizza rolls out a thin-crust, marinara red carpet for two toppings, including classic combos such as pepperoni and mushroom, spinach and feta, and marinated tomatoes and sausage. Each crispy disk totes along a stellar side dish showing of 12 mild, medium, hot, or barbecue wings and six flavorfully entwined garlic knots with homemade marinara sauce. A 2-liter soda quenches thirst with a carbonated deluge capable of transforming into two large fountain drinks for diners enjoying their meal in-house. There they can soak in Boardwalk Pizza’s scenic patio seating overlooking a lake or head indoors and catch a sporting event or live dance-fight on one of the two large LCD screens.
The epicureans at Portofino Mediterranean Grill top low, black tables with Italian and Mediterranean creations from an upscale menu, served amid exposed-brick walls. Diners lounge on white loveseats and zebra-print benches while biting into filet-mignon kebabs ($18) and grilled octopus imported from Portugal ($14). Platters of homemade lobster ravioli train for the Olympics by backstroking in pink-sherry cream sauce ($19), and char-grilled, 14-ounce New York strip steaks ($23) effortlessly slay ravenous appetites. Live music encourages dancers to shimmy on evenings Wednesday–Saturday, when rug-cutters fuel their moves with grilled blackened chicken blanketed in sun-dried-tomato regginino sauce ($16). For a sweet finish to the evening, the homemade tiramisu or greek baklava ($6) inspires taste buds to give a standing ovation.