Texas de Brazil blends the steak-centric cuisine of Texas with the traditional churrasco method of slow-roasting meat over an open flame grill to form a luscious meaty mélange. The full dinner ($39.99) marches out a cavalcade of choice cuts, allowing diners to welcome continuous windfalls of flavorful proteins. Brandish your table's provided card, green on one side, red on the other, and it will function as a meat traffic light that summons servers to either send stacks of seasoned beef, pork, or lamb skewers or halt plate traffic like a decorated culinary crossing guard. Or feel free to substitute greens for the grill by stepping into the sprawling salad-bar conga line ($24.99), two-stepping through toothsome goodies such as imported cheeses, steamed asparagus, and dozens of other hors d'oeuvres.
In the kitchen at Mark's Prime Steakhouse, cherry and pecan flicker and pop in a wood stove. The smoke penetrates into thick cuts of U.S.D.A. beef and fresh seafood brought in from Mayport in Jacksonville. For filets, strips, or bone-in rib eyes, chefs singe a flavorful crust over each chop's juicy center before plopping it onto a plate sizzling with butter.
Servers with black vests and bow ties escort the prime proteins to diners' tables, where their conversations dance over dinner music by mid-century crooners, and light from the ceiling's stained-glass dome splashes onto dark woods. Nearby, martinis, classic cocktails, and a wine list—which has garnered Wine Spectator's "Award of Excellence" every year since 2004—rest on a vintage bar. Salvaged from the La Concha Inn in Key West, the tiger mahogany bar was built in 1873 during an era when bars were called saloons and bears were called mega-squirrels.
For the cooks at Lila's Seafood & Steaks, no imitation seafood can ever compare to the real thing. That's why they never rely on imitation crabmeat; instead, they sell real snow crab legs by the pound and stuff mushrooms with actual blue crab and crab stuffing. Crab only skims the surface of Lila's selection, which ranges from conch fried into fritters to mussels coated in housemade seasoned butter.
Equally choosy about beef as they are about seafood, the cooks shape certified Angus cuts into half-pound burgers and 16-ounce T-bone steaks. To end feasts on a sweet note, the culinary team creates several housemade desserts, including peanut-butter pie, a more satisfying dish than peanut-butter cups that you pretend are tiny pies.
After fresh river winds have breathed adequate life into your senses, apply your revitalized vision to Benny's tempting menu of salads, soups, and surf-and-turf specialties. Put some power behind your search for the perfect entree with an order of fried gator tail served with rémoulade ($8.95), or warm up your tongue with a serving of mussels milanese with garlic, shallots, mushrooms, basil, capers, and lemon-chardonnay brown-butter sauce ($8.95). Chef’s specialties include the ginger-sesame-seared ahi tuna, served with jumbo lump blue crab in a cucumber and pickled-ginger salad ($31.95), and the classic chicken florentine, served over garlic spinach and topped with a shrimp-alfredo sauce ($19.95). To get your hands on some prime turf without having to move in with your mayor, ask your server for a 10-ounce center-cut filet mignon ($34.95) or a roasted rack of lamb coated with a fresh-mint demi-glace sauce ($27.95).
ESPETO is an authentic Brazilian Steak House or "Churrascaria" with "gauchos" providing continuos table side service of 14 different cuts of mouthwatering rotisserie cooked meat complemented by an upscale and fresh salad bar.
III Forks in the Tapestry Park area is a classic chain steakhouse, offered in only a handful of cities in the country. The modern Jacksonville outpost of this semi-casual eatery is stylish, energized and swank, with a tasteful menu that includes beef, freshly caught seafood and locally-sourced ingredients. With wood floors and gleaming walnut furnishings, III Forks has several dining rooms to choose from across the sprawling facility, including the Trophy, Poker and Wine Room – the latter is wrapped in floor-to-ceiling glass walls that house over 1,500 bottles. Each is the epitome of classic, romantic, business and casual-elegant dining, with recessed lighting fixtures and varying wall and floor décor. Filet mignon, double cut pork chop and Chilean sea bass are top picks here, with sides like sautéed spinach and roasted mushrooms. Texas Pecan cake and chocolate ganache round out delectable meals.