Inside the brick oven at Texas Hold'Em BBQ, meats sizzle alongside whole bell peppers. There's a reason why the latter are called The Grilled Stuffed Bell Peppers Bluff—behind the vegetable exterior and under the blue-cheese crumbles lie hidden helpings of beef or pulled pork. The restaurant's menu carries its poker theme across meals such as the Nachos Two Pair and the All In sandwich, but its classic barbecue dinners have no need for a new name. Guests can order chicken, ribs, sausages, and brisket to pair with traditional sides, including baked beans and corn on the cob. At the bar, a catalog of craft beers from assorted breweries counterbalances saucy bites more refreshingly than iced glasses of more sauce. With TVs spread along the length of the bar and a penchant for private sports parties, Texas Hold'Em BBQ advocates for team spirit in addition to smoky roadhouse dining.
Downtown BBQ Bar keeps its priorities straight. That means rib tips, baby back ribs, pulled-pork sandwiches, and wings are served all day. A breakfast bar and lunch specials make appearances throughout the day, but Chef Rene St Fleury takes his barbecue seriously. He perfected the art of cooking from a young age, learning from his mother while growing up in Haiti. To pair with all the ribs, chicken, and brisket, Chef Rene cooks up plenty of mac and cheese, coleslaw, greens, and other sides that can be dished up as single servings or as large as a half-pan. Family meals of ribs, chicken, and sides feed anywhere from 8 to 20 of your closest relatives or fellow bus commuters.
Rather than specialize in East Asian food, sushi, or barbecue, Chow's team decided to be all-inclusive. The result is an original mix of flavors with a hefty umami punch. The Asian nachos are a prime example: crispy wontons, ginger aioli, and wasabi cream piled high. The signature Korean fried chicken is another crowd favorite, and it comes lacquered in zesty, secret sauces.
The sushi rolls are grouped into three categories: Specialty, Celebrity (named after stars) and Not So Sushi, a list that includes ingredients like slow-cooked pork and chimichurri sauce. Feel like playing with your food? Try the Russian roulette roll, a six-piece roll for two in which one mystery piece is filled with fiery habanero sauce. Even if you end up with the hot piece, you still win in the end: the roll also comes with a shot of sake, which keeps the smoke alarm on the roof of your mouth from going off.
Should a poll be done with the people of Fort Lauderdale on the best soul food around, it’d probably say Betty’s. Betty’s Soul Food and Barbeque has been around the Fort Lauderdale area for a long time and in that time, the folks there have managed to garner quite the crowd of regulars—many of who bring in new customers who become new, returning friends at Betty’s. Hailed for serving traditional southern food, many people who grew up in the South and surrounded by the cuisine at Betty’s comment on the authenticity of food at Betty’s, along with how delicious their favorite sides are! Fan favorites include the macaroni and cheese, Betty’s cabbage and even the sweet potatoes. Even their lemonade is made right there in the restaurant! Nothing comes in premade in a box at Betty’s Soul Food and Barbeque but with big helpings and affordable prices, dinner might go out in a to-go container. And, that’s okay, because delicious food should be enjoyed as leftovers too!
It takes four weeks for Lauderdale Grill's prime rib to age to the tenderness deemed best by their chefs. Then, after cooking onsite in hickory smoke, these succulent cuts are available by the 10 or 14 oz serving or as a sandwich on a grilled roll. The cooks here also plate up tuna, mahi mahi, and salmon, as well as bar food favorites such as wings and burgers. Tastier and more fun than a daily sock darning schedule, a daily soup schedule also holds a place in the menu, featuring chilis, chowders, and stews each only offered once a week. And happily for cocktail-lovers, the Broward/Palm Beach New Times raved about the spot's weekend bloody mary bar, calling the homemade mix used "outstanding."