The chefs at The Manor, a trendy nightclub fused with an upscale restaurant, craft a menu of surf-and-turf and elegant fusion cuisine. Diners can catch seaborne centerpieces such as the chili-rubbed firewood salmon ($10.95) and release them into the brooks, bayous, and unmanned water parks that comprise the human body’s 80% H2O makeup. Grilled Korean-style short ribs backstroke in a citrus-soy-chili marinade before basking on plates ($11.95), and the raspberry seared scallops partner with mixed greens that add to pulchritudinous stomach-wall gardens ($11.95). Diners can chase bites down esophageal tunnels with drinks, including Grey Goose–driven concoctions such as the Godiva-laced orange espresso martini ($12).
The high level of partying that takes place at America's Backyard is simply not sustainable over the course of a full week. The popular Fort Lauderdale nightclub seems to recognize this, staying open only on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights. But on those three nights, all bets are off.
The club's atmosphere conjures the devil-may-care spirit of a house party that has spilled out onto the lawn. Revelers groove to party jams in an open-air yard and impress new acquaintances in games of beer pong and flip cup. All of this action revolves around a circular area known as The Pool, which is filled not with water but with bartenders. A bit off to the side, you'll find the Tool Shed Bar, which stocks a full range of craft beers along with hammers to break them open. The aromas of a sizzling grill hang above the fray, enticing dancers to take a break and indulge in ribs, hot dogs, and sliders.
This sophisticated yet casual restaurant and jazz club serves up an eclectic menu of tapas, gourmet pizzas, and sandwiches to the tunes of a rotating line-up of jazz and blues virtuosos. Amid the classic 1940's atmosphere of cozy seating, intimate tables, trenchcoated men mumbling about the Great Depression, and exposed brick walls lined with jazz memorabilia, create your own comestible set with the Blue Jean bruschetta trio ($10), starring provolone pesto, tomato vinaigrette, and mozzarella olive roasted pepper. Follow up with a gourmet thin-crust pizza, such as the classic margarita pizza ($15) or the Bianca Quattro formaggio ($15), smothered in alfredo, mozzarella, feta, ricotta, and gorgonzola. After you have used your Groupon for a savory dinner, saddle up to the throwback club's fully-stocked bar and prepare yourself for a night of dancing and ice sculpting.
A 1,200-gallon aquarium greets diners as soon as they enter Tokyo Blue, an upscale Pan-Asian restaurant located inside the Ocean Manor. Situated on 200 feet of private beach, this elegant eatery features modern flourishes such as glowing glass columns, glossy blue floors, and a full bar illuminated by blue lights. Once the clock strikes 10:30 p.m., a DJ helps transform this chic space into a hopping nightclub, where patrons can refuel with a late-night menu or journey onto a second-story patio ideal for basking in the ocean air and high-fiving the occasional flying fish.
Against this trendy backdrop, Chef Mai—who earned his cooking chops at the popular Miami restaurant Nobu—simmers tenderloin in green curry, drizzles shichimi butter on baked Maine lobster, and pan-sears Chilean sea bass in 25-year aged balsamic and teriyaki sauce. Meanwhile, sushi chef Jo skillfully assembles 30 specialty rolls, including classics such as the California roll as well as eclectic mash-ups such as the Mexican roll with shrimp tempura, avocado, spicy mayo, cream cheese, and sesame seeds.
It's easy to both start and end a night at Blue Martini. During the early hours of the evening, guests can catch the last rays of sun on the patio as they dine on light fare such as fruit-and-cheese plates and flatbread pizzas. This lightness is necessary, because once the sun goes down, guests have to be light on their feet as the lounge turns into a full-on dance party. From then until closing time, guests can keep their energy up with glasses of wine or one of the house's 42 signature cocktails. The bartenders shake, stir, and blend together ingredients to make these drinks, which range from skinny-raspberry mojitos that contain less than 250 calories to the lightly flavored key-lime-pie martini or cucumber lemonade.