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Dining scene: From fried chicken and waffles to pomegranate scallops

What's happening in food and dining around South Florida.

Burt & Max's Bar and Grille

9089 W. Atlantic Ave., Suite 100, west of Delray Beach, 561-638-6380,

Legendary restaurateurs Burt Rapoport and Dennis Max have rejoined to debut their latest venture in the new Delray Marketplace across from the amphitheater, featuring favorites from sibling Max's Grille in Boca Raton, as well as new additions.

"Burt & Max's gives us the opportunity to highlight the latest dining trends and expand to an area that is mostly made up of corporate chain restaurants," Rapoport said in a press release. "Shopping plazas and new housing developments are continuing to expand in the west, pushing their limits to the Everglades."

In this western frontier, a fire pit graces the side patio with an indoor/outdoor bar. A foyer paved with pennies leads to a neutral interior with reclaimed and aged barn woods, large windows, industrial lighting, photos of rock n' roll legends and a tiled, wood-burning oven in the open kitchen.

New creations in the classic and contemporary American lineup include onion soup dumplings ($9), blackened mahi sandwich ($14), blackened shrimp and roasted tomatoes pizza ($14), fried chicken and waffles ($19) and oak-grilled pork chop peperonata ($25). The "Eat Well, Be Well" menu offers gluten-free, low-calorie options.

Dinner is served nightly, and lunch and weekend brunch will launch in March. Live music is planned for Thursday and Saturday nights, plus jazz for Sunday Brunch.

Kaluz Restaurant

3300 E. Commercial Blvd., Fort Lauderdale, 954-772-2209,

With somewhat scarce waterfront dining, South Florida should be eager to welcome an alluring endeavor on the Intracoastal Waterway — and a stylish one at that.

Owner David Baldwin transformed the Roadhouse Grill into architecture reminiscent of Frank Lloyd Wright and removed the second floor to create a dramatically high ceiling and windows.

"We will stand out by our high-end decor, reasonable pricing and our not-so-traditional menu items," says Baldwin, who was a manager at Houston's and J. Alexander's. "The inspiration is to have a beautifully decorated waterfront dining experience but also include more casual patio seating and patio bar experience."

Chic lounge furniture and a fire pit on the side terrace may entice boaters. Inside, a bar and wine cellar greet you as the contemporary design gives way to a glass-fronted open kitchen, plenty of booths and iron chandeliers that resemble gigantic pine cones.

Executive chef Mike Knapik, who cooked at The Greenbrier resort in West Virginia, turns out New American cuisine with global influences. Highlights are ceviche ($9), prime burger topped with shaved prime rib ($14) and Wagyu beef ribs ($30). A chilled quinoa medley with basmati rice, pine nuts, cranberries, bell peppers and herbs is a refreshing accompaniment to a few of the entrees, including the festively plated pomegranate scallops ($29).

Lunch and dinner are served daily, with plans to launch Sunday brunch in April.


Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, 5791 Seminole Way, Hollywood, 954-316-7997,

Sirocco has replaced Rock N Hookah at the Hard Rock. But the hookahs, belly dancers and a Middle Eastern flair are still in.

"We have some traditional Lebanese, some classical Italian and dishes that fuse these flavors with other accents from across the Mediterranean, including Greek, Spanish and Moroccan," says owner Evan Kagan, whose wife is from Morocco. "We also serve a scaled-down late-night menu for those looking for quality healthy alternatives."

Chef Federico Elkarout was born in Beirut and cooked in Rome. His signatures are Moroccan shrimp with garlic and jalapeno ($16), char-grilled salmon with seaweed and ginger glaze over persimmons ($26) and rosemary lamb chops ($35).

Wines and specialty cocktails, such as The Mediterranean vodka martini with pomegranate juice and limoncello ($12), and house made desserts, such as apple mango strudel ($8), round out the offerings along with patio seating and weekend Cirque-style entertainers and live music.

Inside, terrazzo rust floor tiles ground the exotic decor of an elegant chandelier hanging below draped sheer fabric, flanked by dangling white gathered curtains. Lit bar shelves rotate colors, vintage mirrors hang over copper banquettes, and black chairs contrast the desert-orange walls.

"We could not find a better place to share our vision for South Florida," Kagan says.

Lunch and dinner are served daily and the late-night tapas are available until 3 a.m. Thursday through Saturday. Sirocco selections also are served in the adjoining Pi¿no Hollywood, a new live music bar.

Les Amies

626 S. Federal Highway, Deerfield Beach, 954-480-6464

Arrivederci, Italian fare. Bonjour, French cuisine.

Longtime friends Diane Chamberland and Marie-Therese Thomas from Le Val De Loire, also in Deerfield, and The French Café in Boca Raton have taken over the Italian eatery Hot Tomatoe.

"Les Amies' main goal is to provide our customers with fine French cuisine as well as a warm atmosphere . . . a feeling of a home away from home," says Diane Chamberland, who hails from Montreal and has worked with Thomas, from France, for three decades. "Our clients that have been returning to see us over the years have made our reputation so credible."

The two amies have tweaked the decor of large red upholstered chairs, warm sunflower-yellow walls and a stone wall by adding French posters.

Bestsellers are escargot in garlic butter ($7.95), filet of sole meuniere ($19.95), half duckling in orange sauce ($22.95) and rack of lamb Provencal ($24.95).

A three-course sunset menu from 4 to 5:30 p.m. for $18.95, cash only, offers coffee or tea, soup or salad, dessert and choice of 10 entrees such as seafood crepe and beef bourguignonne. Dinner is served nightly, except Mondays.

Email news to or send to John Tanasychuk, Sun Sentinel, 500 E. Broward Blvd., Suite 900, 9th floor, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33394.

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