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30th Birthday Restaurant, Ft Lauderdale Area

nmurawsk Jan 11, 2009 05:51 PM

I'm looking for a cool place to celebrate my 30th birthday with some friends (both locals and out-of-towners). Someplace with a cool atmosphere, good food and drinks and not too pretentious. An outside seating area with be the icing on the cake. Any help is greatly appreciated!

  1. t
    tlubow Jan 12, 2009 07:30 AM

    YOLO on Las Olas is the new "cool" place. They also have a lounge next door. The food is good but not fancy. They have a large outdoor seating area with a fire pit, and an indoor/outdoor bar connecting the inside and outside.

    1. n
      nmurawsk Jan 24, 2009 07:06 AM

      We checked out YOLO last night to make sure ambiance and food was what I was looking for. It definitely is the new hot spot, this place was really crowded. We got there an hour early to have a drink and sit near the fire pit. Unfortunately it was so crowded that we sat at the bar and couldn't even see the fire pit with so many people standing around. When it was time for our reservation we were seated immediately. The hostess brought us to a table in the bar area which was very crowded and noisy. She was very accommodating when we asked for a different table and took us to one on the opposite side of the partition. We ordered chorizo fondue for an appetizer and sandwiches for dinner. The food was good - I definitely recommend the fondue. The one thing I found very weird was that our food was brought out within minutes of ordering. I would say 2-3 minutes for the app and about 5 for entrees. Luckily we waited a while after ordering the app before ordering entrees. Otherwise we probably would have finished our meal in about 20 minutes. Overall, I don't know if this is the right vibe for a 30th birthday. Honestly it's a little bit on the older side (late 30's - 50's and up). It's a cool place for a dinner with friends, for sure. But I am still on a search for my bday party.

      1. s
        Sobe4u Jan 24, 2009 11:10 AM

        Maybe Chima Brazilian Steakhouse on Las Olas -- fun place, nice atmosphere, good food -- they have an outdoor area for drinks but you can't ear there though.

        4 Replies
        1. re: Sobe4u
          The Chowfather Jan 24, 2009 11:17 AM

          Did you look into China Grill?

          1. re: The Chowfather
            Sobe4u Jan 24, 2009 12:02 PM

            Ahh, I forgot about China Grill -- that would probably be great if its not more than you want to spend.

            1. re: Sobe4u
              nmurawsk Jan 24, 2009 03:52 PM

              I have not looked into China grill. I'll definitely check it out. I do have some picky eaters who will be joining me though and they may not be into asian food. But, it's my birthday, right!? What about places in Hollywood, Miami or Del Rey?

              1. re: nmurawsk
                Sobe4u Jan 24, 2009 04:01 PM

                In Miami maybe --

                Prime 112 or Prime Italian
                Meat Market

        2. a
          appleonius Jan 24, 2009 09:41 PM

          How about Seasons 52 for dinner & then shooting over to Blue Martini for drinks & a fun atmosphere?

          1. m
            mrmagee Jan 25, 2009 07:58 PM

            thought Yolo would be a good bet, but if you think the crowd is too old, I would strongly recommend Himmarshee Bar and Grill on 2nd St. It is in the middle of all the bars in downtown Ft Lauderdale, so plenty of options of the after dinner party, especially the bar on the side of it.

            The food is first class (much better the Yolo), the atmosphere should be what you are looking for (depending on the night of the week you go), there are great appetizers for sharing, and you can sit outside (ask if you can get a table on the upstairs balcony).

            China Grill is way overrated IMHO and definitely overpriced. Seasons 52 is good but too boring for a birthday, and Blue Martini is too old a crowd based on your other comments.

            Almost forgot to mention that Himmarshee don't charge a corkage fee, so bring wine with you and keep your costs down. The will decant it for you as well.

            2 Replies
            1. re: mrmagee
              appleonius Feb 5, 2009 03:44 PM

              i doubt this thread is relevant anymore but Blue Martini on Wed night (ladies night) has an older crowd before 11 & a much much younger crowd after then. Just went last week. I'm 25 btw.

              1. re: appleonius
                nmurawsk Feb 5, 2009 04:21 PM

                Thanks for the info - my birthday dinner is actually not until next weekend but after talking with some friends I decided on Cafe Martorano. Anybody have any input on that place?

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