Situated along shorelines in Tampa, Naples, and Key West, Florida Marina Club keeps watercraft ready to crest the waves with docking services, fuel docks, and ship repairs. The marinas’ terra firma amenities match the refinement of their seaside offerings. Restaurants and bars home in on local flavors and international atmospheres, from the Cuban and Caribbean recipes at The Club at Key West Harbour to the weekend pool parties at Tampa’s Hula Bay Club. When not dining or enjoying drinks at Jack's River Bar or Gordon's On The River, members can sweat away cares in saunas, glide through heated infinity pools, or sketch the design for a hypothetical seventh chess piece in restive clubhouses.
When a restaurant's award tally ticks close to 100, there's no need to change the menu. That's the philosophy at work at Michelbob's Championship Ribs, where co-owners Lou Bavaro and Bob Mattson have been serving baby back ribs imported from Denmark and slathered in award-winning original-recipe barbecue sauce since 1979. All of their meats?which also include barbecue chicken, pork, and beef?are slow-smoked to a tender perfection each day and served alongside sides such as baked beans, cole slaw, and onion rings, which are all also made fresh daily. Most recently, their victuals won the Naples Daily News award for Best Food in Southwest Florida. They also ship their sauce and ribs anywhere in the United States via overnight air shipping, catering to the legions of fans and long-haul bike messengers who crave their delectable barbecue brand.
The color blue permeates Maguro?s modern dining room, emanating from the glowing turquoise panels affixed to the sides of the tables and counters, the sky-colored accent lights on the liquor-stocked shelves, and the indigo overhead lights illuminating sleek wooden tabletops and hibachi grills. Here, cooks sizzle up Japanese entrees of meats and fresh fish attractively garnished with sauces and flower-cut veggies. Sushi chefs, meanwhile, coil up a slew of authentic rolls.
Following the Argentinean and Uruguayan steak-house tradition, Martin Fierro Restaurant’s menu slings made-to-order steaks, grilled and hand seasoned over an open fire in plain sight of patrons. Tongues sink slowly into warm, dairy-inspired dreams on an appetizer pillow of grilled provolone cheese ($8.99) or flip to the pillow's cold side with a chilled ceviche of fresh seafood cubes, cooked by lime and lemon juice ($8.99). A half-pound Angus beef hamburger adds Argentinean flare to any free weight set with toppings of bacon and fried egg ($8.99), and the salmon al fettuccine tangles its garlic-hinted fish filet in a net of fettuccine bated with smoked salmon cream ($14.99). As appetizers and midcourses wane, patient incisors quiver at the meaty tableau of a juicy new york strip loin sizzling on the grill alongside its asparagus and green-pepper brethren ($17.99). In Martin Fierro Restaurant’s quaint dining room, rustic wood paneling complements an array of South American wall accents, stretched furs, candles, and a shingled indoor tiki roof. Amid offerings of South American wines and beers, customers are encouraged to carouse with friends, though balloon animals are discouraged from carousing with kebab skewers.
When John Ritter thinks back to 1948, he can almost taste the frozen treats he churned out during his after-school job at the local ice-cream parlor. Now, after a 35-year career as a film animator, he helps others to enjoy similarly sweet memories at Ritter's Frozen Custard. Here, friendly staffers handcraft each batch of frozen custard, an ultrapremium ice cream as smooth as a jazz record dipped in chocolate. At the counter, guests can sample the flavors of the day, which range from tart blueberry to gooey, crunchy mocha-almond fudge. Scoops of classic vanilla—along with more than 25 toppings—fill specialty creations such as brownie sundaes, hand-dipped malts, and freezer-ready ice-cream sandwiches.