At Pearl Restaurant & Lounge, diners might find themselves twirling pasta around forks or trapping sushi rolls between chopsticks. Both eating styles are represented in the eclectic menu, which showcases inventive forays into Italian and Asian cuisines. There's pizzas piled with prosciutto and mesclun greens, raviolis stuffed with lobster, and pan-seared pork dumplings ripe for dipping into a spicy Szechuan sauce. And to model the food, there's also two types of dining atmospheres: a romantic outdoor terrace or elegant blue-lit dining room. Following meals, you need only step into the lounge area for a little nightlife; live music fills the 18,000-square-foot space on Friday and Saturday nights until 2 a.m. with the sounds of jazz, low-key beats, and Muzak renditions of the chicken dance.
Picking a meal at Grid Iron Ale House & Grille is no easy task, but that choice pales in comparison to selecting a beverage. That's because bartenders keep more than 30 craft beers on tap, not to mention many more bottled alongside top-shelf spirits and a dozen wines. The libations complement the culinary team's mostly classic approach to pub food, which includes Angus sliders with chipotle mayo and subs whose meatballs come stuffed with mozzarella. Feasts unfold amid constant entertainment, from live events such as karaoke and poker to games on HDTVs adorning every wall and carefully balanced on each server's head.
At Efendi’s Mediterranean Bar & Grill, Chef Efendi wields more than 30 years of culinary experience to populate a menu with Turkish-inspired Mediterranean victuals. Portobello bruschetta or morsels of Norwegian smoked salmon, flecked with cream cheese and capers, kick off an evening spent attempting to bend forks with telekinesis amid apricot walls, gold-fringed mauve curtains, and a fireplace surrounded by stone. Entrees of fresh sole fillets, stuffed with shrimp and garlic, arrive to the brick patio whose tables also welcome the weight of chicken sautéed with walnuts and blanketed in tangy pomegranate-molasses sauce. On occasion, the shimmy of a belly dancer provides a coin-tinkling soundtrack as dinner companions fork into a homemade dessert from a daily rotation of sweets, warming to the idea of adopting the baklava as national currency.
Liv Restaurant & Lounge's culinary magicians conjure up an awesomely aromatic collection of authentic Italian dishes artfully crafted out of house-made ingredients. Jump-start appetites with starters such as the crispy fried smelts with hot peppers and garlic-aioli sauce ($5–$9) before matching mandibles against bounteous portions of pasta plucked from a bowl of linguini and clams ($8–$14). A prosciutto-and-mozzarella pizza ($8–$10) can be shared between romantic twosomes or platonic partners, and entrees such as the chicken-and-veal marsala ($12–$18) silence noisy stomachs before they bellow like Pavarotti after stubbing his big toe. Bringing meals to a sweet conclusion, six deep-fried Oreos surround scoops of vanilla ice cream topped with whipped cream and hot fudge to form a culinary curtain call.
Gillian's Ale House follows the American pub tradition of hearty eats, cold beer, and televised sports. The menu takes some culinary cues from Ireland, filling diners' bellies with shepherd's pie, beer-battered fish and chips, and pints of perfectly poured Guinness. Half-pound Angus burgers, grilled Reubens, and loaded nachos also complement domestic and foreign brews at the laid-back eatery, which features HDTVs and occasional guest DJs and karaoke.
Since 1992, the Providence Latin American Film Festival has been lauded for showcasing Latin American, Portuguese, and Spanish feature films, shorts, documentaries, and animations. This year's lineup of 10 moving pictures explores film as a vehicle for expressing and understanding the Latin American experience, from the documentary No Woman, No Cry on the struggles of pregnant women to Hora Cero, an action-packed heist film set in Venezuela. VIPs have access to every film in the lineup, as well as to art exhibits, panel discussions, filmmaker-led workshops, and popcorn-nibbling lessons. With passes to the opening or closing night's soirees, attendees may carouse with the festival's board of directors, corporate sponsors, and party-hat-wearing projectors while munching on appetizers and celebratory cuisine. The opening-night after-party kicks cinematic things off at Roots Café, where invite holders will receive a drink ticket, and Temple Restaurant hosts the closing-night party.