You’re Never Too Busy to Travel — And Save Money in the Process

Posted By : denise/ 12

Hello Foodie Friends,

Today’s post is from a guest contributor, Jesse Clark from Soulful-travel.com.

Photo credit: Unsplash

Going on a great trip away from home comes with many benefits. It’s a chance to take a break from the demands of business, relax, broaden your perspective, learn more about yourself, and so much more. However, while many people struggle with whether it will be beneficial or being too busy to travel, one of the top reasons people don’t travel is due to a tight budget. It’s true, travel can be expensive. But if you plan ahead and use money-saving strategies, you can go on a magnificent, rejuvenating trip without draining your bank account.

For those who want to travel without abandoning their budget and business responsibilities, consider these tips from Savor Our City.

Be open-minded and flexible.

When you book your trip, be flexible. Keep an open mind about your destination and travel dates. You can often find special deals on flights to certain vacation spots, and even if it’s a place you weren’t considering before, it might turn out to be the perfect getaway.

Also, spend some time on booking sites to observe the price differences on roundtrip flights regarding the days of the week. For instance, flying Tuesday to Tuesday — or even Saturday to Saturday — is typically much cheaper than flying Friday to Sunday. Moreover, you can save a significant amount of money by traveling during the off-season or shoulder season.

Opt for a vacation rental.

Unless you know people who live at your destination and they’ve opened their home to you, you will need to book a place to stay. While hotels come with many different perks, vacation rentals are simply a better all-around option for extended stays.

When you go through a hosting service like Airbnb, you can expect to have nice, clean accommodations. Plus, there will probably be more space to spread out, you’ll be able to comfortably cook your own meals, and you’ll have exceptional privacy. Oh, yes, and it’s a lot less expensive than staying at a hotel.

Lighten your workload.

One obvious way to reduce stress levels and ensure you can enjoy your downtime is to reduce your work obligations. Unfortunately, this is often easier said than done. These days, though, there are terrific services popping up that can help you with all sorts of business tasks.

Take a routine chore like filing the annual report for a business. Any entrepreneur can tell you that this is a must-do, yet nobody relishes the day they need to pull together all their data, then organize it and file a report with the state. You can simply pass this project on, though, through affordable services like ZenBusiness.com. They offer personalized dashboards to tend all the details your state requires of your company, will compile the data, and then file the report on your behalf. By leaning on a service that has all the bells and whistles to take care of chores like these, you can focus your time, money, and energy on your relaxing getaway.

Change your wireless plan.

This one is essential because it can save you hundreds of dollars: get an international wireless plan before you leave for your trip. Roaming charges can do a number on your budget, and a good long-distance plan will enable you to talk to friends and family while protecting you from unexpected hikes in your monthly bill. Also, consider switching to unlimited data, which will save you from steep overage charges while allowing you to use your phone for navigation, web browsing, social media, and other tasks.

You don’t have to empty your savings to take an awesome trip. Use savings opportunities and rent a car so that you can go where you want, when you want. Opt for an unlimited data plan to protect yourself from hefty fees, and be flexible with your destination and travel dates. Finally, ditch the hotels and go for a vacation rental for a more cost-effective stay.

 

Until we eat, drink and travel again…

Sending you delicious wishes, xo

Denise

How to Take a Self-Care Vacation on a Budget

Posted By : denise/ 55

Hello Foodie Friends,

Today’s post is from our guest contributor, Jesse Clark from Soulful-travel.com

Image credit: Pixabay

Are you part of a small or midsize group looking for a unique way to have fun and sample foods from different restaurants within a city of your choice? Then let Savor Our City cater to you with exciting 2-3 hour culinary adventures that include lots of local and historical information, team building activities, and networking paired with hand-picked regional delicacies and gourmet specialty foods along the way. Book your next adventure today! (954) 410-3177

One of the simplest ways to reduce stress and attend to your self-care needs is to take a vacation, notes Travtasy.com. You work hard and have earned these days off. Rather than let them accumulate, take a break and refresh your mind and body. The emotional reset that a vacation offers can improve your quality of life and make you more effective when you return.

Savor Our City understands the ways in which stress, anxiety and depression can influence how you experience life, and how simply getting away and having new experiences can help. Sometimes people turn to substances to reduce emotional discomfort when self-care and finding ways to disconnect is a better option. Vacation self-care may mean flying to a distant land or, if you are on a budget, staying put for a local adventure. Fort Lauderdale, for example, offers a range of attractions that you can access without spending excessive amounts of money or time.

The Staycation Option, Lauderdale-Style

Taking a vacation in your own city offers you an opportunity to check out areas that you may have never experienced. Opt for a rental in another part of the city and check out local attractions, such as the signature rows of palm tree- and mansion-lined Isles along 300 miles of inland waterways, as well as the many festivals and activities that make “Venice of America” so special. The possibilities are endless — sometimes self-care is closer and simpler than you would think.

For the ultimate staycation experience, consider a rental near Fort Lauderdale attractions you wish to visit. Clean, comfortable amenities let you enjoy the area while decreasing your stress levels. Choose a rental service that lets you filter search options and offers 24/7 support. Self-care is all about stress reduction, after all, and your vacation should reflect that from booking your rental to resting up after a day of sightseeing.

Budget-Friendly Vacation Self-Care

Even with limited funds, you can do self-care on vacation in many ways. Author and researcher Dr. Deborah Cracknell points out that a mindful walk on the beach or simply spending time letting your mind wander while you enjoy the sights, sounds and smells of the area can go a long way toward promoting relaxation. If you want to heighten your senses, it may be fun to check out the Las Olas Wine & Food Festival for unique, local cuisine.

If you’re a foodie of any level, Savor Our City recommends going on a South Florida food tour, with available options like progressive or multi-course meals. For a change of pace, they also suggest booking “the History & Culture tour that combines stops at landmarks and museums with meals and snacks at local restaurants and gourmet food shops.”

Vacations With a Self-Care Focus

Making self-care the focus and the purpose of a getaway may require you to reconsider your needs, especially if your focus is usually on family or work. Are you the type that gets antsy when you finally have downtime and you’re not sure what to do? Sometimes getting away gives you the opportunity to re-learn things about yourself, such as discovering new interests and passions.

Perhaps you can reconnect with your love of nature while on vacation by checking out the Everglades, home not just to a wide range of wildlife and fauna, but to the Seminole Indians, who invite visitors to learn about their culture. For creative inspiration, check out the Downtown Hollywood Mural Project, with more than 20 curated outdoor contemporary art murals by internationally recognized artists.

Regardless of the activities you choose or where you decide to take your vacation, keep in mind that self-care is a priority. Unplugging from work and home stressors can improve your quality of life. You may be surprised at how much better you feel, even when you stay put for vacation.

SeaSpray Restaurant Opens at the Waterstone Resort & Marina

Posted By : denise/ 56

Hello Foodie Friends,

Savor Our City’s Marketing Director Jennifer Ouvrard and Founder/Chief Foodie Officer Denise Righetti

Well it’s been a while since I have attended an organized media dine, understandably so since we have been in a pandemic. We are very fortunate here though in South Florida as our restaurants and businesses have been open and operating at full capacity much sooner than most other cities of comparable size. I for one am very excited to get back out and attend new restaurant openings and food & wine festivals and share my discoveries with you. This post is about my preview of the Waterstone Resort’s brand new SeaSpray restaurant (Boca’s ONLY waterfront dining) which is serving up local cuisine with casual coastal elegance. We were treated to a lovely selection of cocktails, appetizers, an entree of our choice and every dessert on their menu. Spoiler alert: this place impressed every one who attended this media dine. And it’s about time we finally had a waterfront dining option that actually served decent food and didn’t just rely on their location to draw people in. Read: great views + great food  + service = new fave go-to spot!!!

SeaSpray is bringing Boca Raton everything it never had but always secretly needed, an intracoastal escape made of equal parts glamour and laid-back charm.  Developed by Evolution Hospitality as part of an extensive half a million dollar renovation to Waterstone Resort & Marina, SeaSpray is led by VP of F&B/acclaimed Executive Chef Kelley Randall, who developed an innovative, sustainably-minded menu rooted in traditional staples highlighted by local seafood. “You can come by boat or by car, have a bunch of burgers, order fresh salads and quality seafood options or reserve an 8pm seating and dine more formally, for steak, grilled Mahi or other quality entrees. There’s both glitz and familiarity — but it’s a breezy vibe,” says Randall.

PEAR MARTINI   Absolut Pear, St. Germaine, Sour

PLANTER’S PUNCH Captain Morgan’s Spiced Rum, Orange and Pineapple Juices, Grenadine

PINEAPPLE JALAPEÑO  El Jimador Tequila, Giffard Liqueur, Lime

GRILLED OCTOPUS  chorizo, fingerling potato, olives, cilantro-scallion vinaigrette

PEAR TORTELLINI  truffle cream sauce, rosemary, parmesan. Photo Credit: Gyorgy Papp

STICKY CAULIFLOWER sesame soy glaze, toasted sesame seeds, scallions

HUMMUS   warm pita bread, smoked paprika, chili oil

SKIRT STEAK FRITES   chipotle marinade, chimichurri, rosemary parmesan fries

SIMPLY GRILLED SALMON. sweet potato mash, broccoli, Vermont maple glaze

FLOURLESS CHOCOLATE CAKE  dark chocolate sauce, whipped cream

KEY LIME PIE   crumble, sorbet, raspberries, mango puree

APPLE COBBLER   salted caramel gelato, dulce de leche

CAMPFIRE S’MORES  marshmallows, chocolate bar, graham crackers Photo Credit: Gyorgy Papp

 

Executive Chef Kelley Randall   Photo Credit: Gyorgy Papp

Menu highlights include shareable plates such as Sticky Cauliflower with sesame soy glaze, toasted sesame seeds and scallions; Grilled Octopus with chorizo, fingerling potato, olives, cilantro-scallion vinaigrette; and Pear Tortellini with truffle cream sauce (to die for; probably my fave dish of the night), rosemary, parmesan; “Handhelds” like the Mahi Reuben with tangy cabbage slaw, 1000 island dressing, served on marbled rye bread and the Seaspray Burger with prime beef, aged cheddar, iceberg, red onion, tomato, signature sauce, served on a brioche bun; and Mains including Chicken Paillard with romaine, orange segments, fennel, red grapes, toasted almonds, mustard vinaigrette; Skirt Steak Frites with chipotle marinade, chimichurri, rosemary parmesan fries; and Frutti di Mare with lobster, gulf shrimp, clams, mussels, linguine, spicy San Marzano sauce, parmesan crostini. Executive Chef Kelley thoughtfully created a menu that took into consideration people with special diets such as Gluten-Free, Vegetarian and Vegan, which are all easily identifiable on the menu.

Guests can indulge in a mixologist-curated list of craft cocktails every bit as exciting as the menu. Think Signature Cocktails like Dark & Stormy with Goslings dark rum, ginger beer, lime and Pomegranate Martini with Tito’s, Palma liqueur, Grand Marnier; Frozen libations like Bailey’s Colada with Oak & Cane rum, pineapple, coconut, Baileys float (reminds me of my days of working on board cruise ships; the crew were privy to a secret concoction called the “BBC” which stood for Bailey’s Banana Colada) and Mudslide with New Amsterdam Vodka, Kahlúa, Baileys, ice cream, chocolate; Margaritas such as Pineapple Jalapeño with Dulce Vida Tequila, muddled jalapeno, pineapple juice, lime and Blue Lagoon with Casamigos tequila, Blue Curacao, pineapple juice.

As for design, the 2,000-square-foot-eatery’s unmistakable nod to both modern tropical and vintage chic makes for a uniquely casual-meets-luxurious experience with fully outdoor covered and patio dining an expansive outdoor bar and gorgeous private dining room accommodating up to 20. Think Beverly Hills intermingled with Tulum style. With both traditional elegance and fun, edgy and cool vibes present, the ambience embraces older and newer generations alike. Each piece of furniture at SeaSpray is unique, custom-designed by the team to dress the experience, while spot lights, neon signs and soft champagne lighting create a myriad of differing atmospheres all within one space, fashioning a sweetly intimate mood in a social setting.

The space embraces South Florida’s tropical nature. There are different spaces for different people and moods. Seating is arranged in such a way that everyone will have a gorgeous view, and each nook and cranny feels different. The idea is to feel like you’re in your own backyard, overlooking the intracoastal.

Onsite, an oversized mural by local artist Gabriela Benatar spanning seven walls total, celebrates South Florida in its entire splendor, highlighting the local flora and fauna and speaking to the constant evolution of both our surroundings and ourselves, celebrating nature while bringing a little bit of the outside in. The mural took two months to complete.

Happy Hour is M-F from 4-6pm (except holidays) with select wines, well cocktails and draft beers available for $7 as well as a number of yummy appetizers, including my favorite the pear tortellini, for just $7 as well. You will definitely want to visit (or revisit) this wonderful location next time you are in the area. Be sure to look out for me there and if you spot me, come say hi!

Until we eat (and drink) again…

I send you delicious wishes, xo

Denise

How to Travel Safely on a Foodie Vacation in Florida

Posted By : denise/ 76

Hello Foodie Friends,

Today’s post is from a guest contributor, Jesse Clark from Soulful-travel.com

Photo: Pixabay

For over a year, foodies have been forced to either make their own culinary creations at home or grab meals as takeout from favorite restaurants. They have missed the joy of traveling to a destination to enjoy new dishes and flavors that tantalize their taste buds. Florida is always a popular vacation spot for those who love to eat a variety of delicious food such as seafood, ethnic dishes, or fresh vegetarian delights. Here is how you can safely make a culinary trip to The Sunshine State a reality!

 

Book Your Reservations

The state of Florida is open and ready for visitors! Your favorite restaurants and new ones to explore are operating at full capacity. Museums, retail shops, and entertainment facilities are fully open for your enjoyment as well. It is wise to book your hotel and restaurant reservations as early as possible as spaces in the most popular Florida destinations fill up quickly.

 

Treat yourself to a unique experience by reserving a South or Central Florida food tour with Savor Our City. Various options are available, including progressive or multi course meals. For a change of pace, book the History & Culture tour that combines stops at landmarks and museums with meals and snacks at local restaurants and gourmet food shops.

 

Get the Vaccine

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advises those who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 can safely travel in the U.S. as long as they continue to take the following precautions:

 

  • Avoid crowded areas
  • Stay six feet away from strangers
  • Wear a mask while traveling
  • Wash hands regularly

 

Consider Flying or Driving to Florida

Travel and medical experts agree it is safe to fly domestically, especially if you book a nonstop flight and wear a mask the entire time. Reserve a seat on an airline that cleans the plane with electrostatic antimicrobial sprays and has HEPA filters running to remove 99 percent of airborne viruses.

 

If you don’t feel safe flying yet, driving in your own car is relatively safe as well. Health experts recommend avoiding weekend travel and traveling during the week when rest stops and gas stations are less crowded. Bring antibacterial wipes to clean the gas pump buttons and handle before you use them, and sanitize your hands when you are done. Pack your own snacks and drinks and use drive-through lanes to pick up meals whenever possible. Keep a mask with you in case you are in an area that requires them.

 

If you’re traveling by car, make sure you have an updated smartphone to help plot your trip and find delicious restaurants to eat at along the way. You’ll also want to invest in a wireless charger and screen protector to prevent damage to your phone.

 

Sanitize Your Hotel Room Surfaces

When you check in your hotel room, it is best to disinfect the room immediately. Use antiviral wipes or a UVC light sanitizing wand to kill almost all the lingering germs found on high-touch surfaces in the hotel room, such as:

 

  • Doorknobs
  • Remotes
  • Light switches
  • Sink and shower handles
  • Toilet flush handle and lid

 

Bring along a portable travel air purifier with a HEPA filter to keep your hotel room clear of airborne germs. These devices are small enough to be set on your hotel nightstand and have enough power to cover the square footage of the average hotel room.

 

By getting vaccinated and taking these safety precautions, you can safely enjoy a foodie adventure in Florida again. Your tastebuds will thank you for it!

Tasty Tamarac – Tamarac’s Inaugural Best Appetizer Competition Kicks Off May 1st

Posted By : denise/ 183

Hello Foodie Friends,

I am excited to announce that Savor Our City has been contracted to assist the City of Tamarac on a 6 month marketing initiative geared towards helping their mom and pop restaurants who have been struggling during the pandemic. We are pleased to share with you “Savor The Flavors Of Tamarac” which will highlight the many unique flavors (global cuisines) found throughout Tamarac. Our first initiative kicks off on May 1st with “Tasty Tamarac”, a Culinary Competition for the Tastiest Appetizer.

 

Who will receive this inaugural People’s Choice Award? From May 1 – 16, locals and visitors alike will have an opportunity to cast their vote for their favorite American appetizer. Not only will the competing restaurants stand a chance to win a custom plaque and bragging rights for a year, but those who participate by going to at least one restaurant in each Flavor Category (American: May 1 -16; Asian: May 17-31; Caribbean: June 1 – 14; Italian: June 15 – 30 and Latin July 1 – 15) and casting their vote (voting instructions available at FlavorsOfTamarac.com and at each participating restaurant) will be automatically entered into a drawing to win a restaurant gift certificate pack valued at $100.

 

Contenders : American Flavors (May 1 – 16)

 

Char Hut

A family-owned business with a reputation for giving back to charitable causes in the community, Char Hut is known for not only serving the leanest, most delicious burgers in town, but also features a menu of choices including chicken, sides, sweets, combo meals, salads and more. Char Hut credits its staff for delivering a great experience for their customers. They employ quality-minded people who want to be part of a winning operation and the future growth of our business Char-Hut plans to expand throughout Florida in the coming years and is hiring at this time.

Competition Appetizer: Onion Rings

Address: 10000 West McNab Road, Tamarac, FL 33321

Phone # 954-720-5566

Hours of Operation: Dine-in: Open at 50% capacity / Take Out

Walk in for take out: Monday – Sunday: 11:00am – 9:00pm

Drive-through: Monday – Sunday: 11:00am – 9:00pm

 

Chowtime Grill & Buffet

With a wide assortment of American, Asian & Seafood specialty items on the buffet (self-service at the buffet is available once again with gloves provided for patrons’ use), there’s no shortage of incredibly fresh and tasty dishes to select from at a great value.

 

Competition Appetizer: Stuffed Blue Crab  

 

Address: 6997 W Commercial Blvd, Tamarac, FL 33319

Phone # 954-721-8688

Hours of Operation: Mon – Thu, Sun 11am – 9:30pm; Fri – Sat 11am -10:30pm

 

Smoothie Jungle Café

Smoothie Jungle Café opened in 1988 by a Brazilian who had the notion of combining the ideas of fresh fruit smoothies and delicious, healthy eating into one fast-casual concept; Smoothie Jungle Café serves delicious healthy preservative-free food at an affordable price, fast. Brazilian fruit favorites such as Açaí, Amazon Cherry and Smoothie Jungle’s own “Brazilian Chicken Salad” are a few of the many wonderful items you will find on the menu here.

 

Competition Appetizer: Shrimp & Corn Chowder Soup

 

Address:   3208 W. Commercial Blvd Tamarac, FL. 33309

Phone # 954-714-1115

Hours of Operation: Mon – Fri 8am – 5pm; Closed Sat -Sun

 

 

Wingstop

For over 20 years, Wingstop has been the destination when you crave fresh never faked wings, hand-cut seasoned fries and any of their famous sides. For people who demand flavor in everything they do, there’s only Wingstop – because it’s more than a meal, it’s a flavor experience.

Competition Appetizer:  Fried Corn


Address: 5720 North University Drive, Tamarac, FL 33321

Phone # 954-388-5815

Hours of Operation: Daily 11am – midnight

 

 

 

Woodmont Country Club

Woodmont Country Club is located in a very serene and beautiful section of the town of Tamarac, FL. The 27 holes of championship golf designed by Von Hagge & Devlin are guarded by large trees, and majestic ponds which meander throughout the property. Many varieties of bird and wildlife find their habitat here at Woodmont. Challenging golf experienced in a tranquil setting, along with country club amenities, is the essence of Woodmont C.C..

 

Competition Appetizer: Butternut Squash Roll

 

Address: 7801 NW 80th Ave. Tamarac, FL 33321

Phone # 954-722-4300

Hours of Operation: Daily 7am – 6pm

 

 

 

Contenders: Asian Flavors (May 17 – 31)

 

China Star

China Star Chinese Restaurant offers authentic and delicious tasting Chinese and Asian cuisine with affordable pricing. Choose to take-out or delivery (dine-in is not available during COVID). China Star is known for its variety in taste and high quality fresh ingredients.

Competition Appetizer:  Fried Chicken Wings

Address: 4233 W Commercial Blvd, Tamarac, FL 33319

Phone # 954-765-6401

Hours of Operation:  M-Th 11am – 10:30pm;

Fri – Sat 11am – 11pm; Sun 12pm – 10:30pm

 

 

Fortune Dragon

Chinese staples turned out in a spacious, strip-mall dining room with traditional Asian decor. Choose to take-out or delivery (dine-in is not available during COVID). Chinese dumpling commonly eaten in China and other parts of East Asia. They are one of the major dishes eaten during the Chinese New Year and year-round in the northern provinces; they are most commonly steamed, pan fried, deep fried, or boiled.

Competition Appetizer:  Pork Dumplings (pan fried or steamed)

Address:  7178 N University Dr, Tamarac, FL 33321

Phone # 954-721-7338

Hours of Operation: Monday- closed; Tue-Sat. 11:00 am to 9 pm; Sunday 1pm to 9 pm (Take Out & Delivery Only during pandemic)

Starting May 11th, in-dining will be re-opened with the above posted hours, with extended weekend hours (Fri – Sat 11:30am – 10pm)

 

 

Hong Kong City BBQ

Serving authentic Chinese food. Dim sum and Chinese Barbecue are the house specialties.

 

Competition Appetizer:  Crispy Fried Shrimp

A

ddress: 301 N State Road 7, Tamarac, FL 33319

Phone #  954-777-3832

Hours of Operation:  Monday- closed; Tue-Fri 11 am to 11 pm; Sat -Sun 10:30am to 11 pm

 

Lemon N Spice

Fresh Halal food prepared daily. Chaat corner in venue. Catering and party venue (capacity 150 people) available!

Samosas are flaky and tender fried and are one of the most popular recipes in North Indian cuisine. They feature a pastry-like crust but are filled with savory potatoes and peas for a hearty, delicious snack.

Competition Appetizer:  Vegetable Samosa

Address: 7130 N University Dr, Tamarac, FL 33321

Phone # (954) 388-5193

Hours of Operation:  During Ramadan (until May 13th) Mon – Thu 11:30am – 9pm; Wed: Closed; Fri – Sat 11:30am – 9pm.

Regular Hours: Mon – Thu 11:30am – 9pm; Fri – Sat 11:30am – 10pm

 

Pho Hoa

At Phở Hòa, their passion is simple: to make a healthy Vietnamese phở noodle soup offering the same robust flavors and aromas of traditional phở. That’s why they’ve revolutionized the way phở is made; using top-grade meats to create a healthier soup broth that’s lower in calories and cholesterol. Their signature broth is paired with fresh locally sourced produce, high quality ingredients and spices to produce the perfect bowl of phở. Phở Hòa is the Health Conscious Choice™.

 

Vietnamese Yellow Pancakes are crepe-like pancakes that bring a light rice batter and ample fillings together for one tasty, crispy breakfast or snack!

 

Competition Appetizer:  Yellow Pancake

Address: 5435 FL-7, Tamarac, FL 33319

Phone #  954-739-9888

Hours of Operation:  Daily: 10am – 8:30pm; Closed Tuesdays

 

Sushi Raku

Are you in the mood for delicious food using fresh ingredients at an affordable price? If so, then we are the spot for you. Sushi Raku offer scrumptious food to our diners that can be enjoyed in our restaurant or picked up for a fantastic feast in the comfort of your home. Our menu features many mouth-watering dishes including amazing specials like our award-winning house specialty sushi and rolls. We love doing our part to feed the local community. Try us out today, you will not be disappointed!

Takoyaki or “octopus balls” is a ball-shaped Japanese snack made of a wheat flour-based batter and cooked in a special molded pan. It is typically filled with minced or diced octopus, tempura scraps, pickled ginger, and green onion

 

Competition Appetizer:  Takoyaki (octopus pancake balls)

Address: 10135 W Commercial Blvd, Tamarac, FL 33351

Phone # 954-532-6644

Hours of Operation: Mon – Fri 11:30am – 9pm; Sat 12pm – 9pm; Sun 12pm- 8pm

 

 

Next up: Caribbean Flavors (June 1 – 14)

 

August: FREE City-Wide Food-Centric Scavenger Hunt

 

To stay informed about these and other upcoming events taking place in Tamarac, please text “FLAVORS” to 57838 and/or follow us on our Instagram & Facebook pages @flavorsoftamarac

 

Until we eat again…

I send you delicious wishes, xo

 

Denise

 

Press Gourmet Sandwiches

Posted By : denise/ 163

Hello Foodie Friends,

Like Superman, everyone of us has our own kryptonite, and in my world, mine is bread! I grew up eating sandwiches for lunch and  as my palate matured over the years, I began experimenting in the kitchen coming up with clever new concoctions. I would start of with something basic like a grilled cheese sandwich and then making a few simple tweaks (from upgrading the bread, spreading butter or mayo on the outside of the bread before cooking in the pan, to utilizing a caramelized onion jam)  I was able to elevate that classic sammy into a gourmet masterpiece. Yes, sandwiches are my jam! So when I received an invite to come check out Press Gourmet Sandwiches in Boca, it was a no brainer. The motto at Press Gourmet is every sandwich, every salad, every side is handmade to order with only the freshest, natural, best ingredients. Each sandwich is handcrafted to order. All of their meats are slow roasted to perfection. Chicken is marinated and cooked to order and all sauces and toppings are prepared daily. They consider themselves to be a five-star gourmet experience in a fast casual setting – eat in or take out.

Competition winning Mac n Cheese Balls
The Sentinel – shredded beef Philly style, the most popular non-chicken sandwich. This was my favorite sandwich for sure.
The CD Salad, named after co-owner Chris, has my favorite ingredients and was delicious. This is the 1/2 portion believe it or not.
The Daily – the most popular of the chicken sandwiches, served with truffle parm fries

The back story:  It all started at Johnson & Wales University when Rand and Chris met. They noticed from their name tags and they were both commuting from Delray Beach to Miami. So they started to carpool; those rides together to Miami were where their friendship really started. After only a few weeks of carpooling Chris and Rand decided to move into Chris’s apartment near Johnson & Wales University.

In only a few short months they had become best friends living together in Miami. During culinary school Rand and Chris excelled to the top of their class, becoming the go-to guys to get things done.
Every Tuesday, the food trucks would set up on the campus at JWU and serve to all of the students. Chris and Rand became immediately attached to the food trucks, asking all of the owners questions every time they came out. In their heart they knew someday they would open up a food truck of their own.

Soon after, Rand was asked to work as a sous chef for a husband of one of his professors. He was a private chef to the rich and famous in Miami. It only took one year before the clients asked Rand to be the head chef, at the age of 22. One of the first things that he did was to make Chris his sous chef. This was a time in their lives that they would never forget. Chris and Rand were living half the year in Miami and the other half in New York City while cooking for the rich and famous.

While in New York, Rand and Chris were living on their client’s yacht. Rand really enjoyed living on the yachs, he said, “because it was like a huge house right on the water, that swayed back and forth with the current, just rocking you to sleep”. One year Chris actually rode the boat up for 4 days to New York City, through the rough seas, while still cooking all of the food for the crew. Let’s just say he probably won’t be taking a boat across the country anytime soon!

After three years of being private chefs Rand and Chris caught the entrepreneurial bug. They received so much praise for the food, from some of the most important people in the country. They knew they wanted to bring their food to the masses, but they didn’t quite know how to start a business. So Chris and Rand left their jobs as private chefs to head to Chris’ family’s company, Uncle Giuseppe’s, a chain of Italian supermarkets. While at Uncle Giuseppe’s, Rand and Chris were taught the importance of food costs, business smarts, and the ability to scale larger while remaining consistent with the food throughout different locations.
So they headed back to Florida to start their own business. The location of the first restaurant caused arguments, as they just weren’t sure where to put it. That was when they thought back to when they were in culinary school and the food trucks would come every Tuesday. Rand and Chris thought very hard about what their next move would be. They decided to start a food truck as a proof of concept and to find the best locations for the eventual restaurants to come. They called it Miami Press Gourmet Sandwiches Food Truck. The concept quickly took off, as the Miami Press Food Truck became one of the top trucks in South Florida. It was a dream for Chris and Rand to be able to serve their great food to the masses. They knew that if they used good fresh and local ingredients and prepared the food to order that they would always have people wanting to eat their food.

While the truck was taking off, Rand got the opportunity to go on Food Network and compete in a reality competition cooking show. The show is called Food Truck Face Off, the show is a mix between The Great American Food Truck Race and Chopped. Rand brought one of he and Chris’s signature dishes, the Mac’n Cheese Ball. He won the competition, bringing the spotlight to the Mac n’ Cheese Balls and the already well-known Miami Press Food Truck. The lines became even longer as their food truck became more and more popular by the day.

As the success out grew the food truck, Chris and Rand finally knew it was time to open up a Press Gourmet Sandwiches Restaurant. Press Gourmet Sandwiches, or PGS for short, is a fast casual sandwich restaurant serving pressed sandwiches. All of the sandwiches are made to order from scratch and pressed on ciabatta bread until crispy on top and soft in the middle. It’s made with all fresh and local ingredients.

Press Gourmet Sandwiches has two locations, one in Ft. Lauderdale and one in Boca Raton. They are open Mon – Sat 7am – 8pm, closed Sundays. For more info, check out their website.

Until we eat again…

I send you delicious wishes, xo

Denise

Bodega Taqueria y Tequila

Posted By : denise/ 179

Hello Foodie Friends,

Today’s post features one of my favorite fast casual foods: tacos!  I received an invitation to dine at Bodega Taqueria y Tequila in Ft. Lauderdale a few weeks ago and I’m happy to share my experience with you today.

Since opening its doors to their original location in South Beach, just steps away from the famed Lincoln Road Mall on 16th Street in 2015, Bodega Taqueria y Tequila, founded by Menin Hospitality’s Keith Menin and Jared Galbut and led by Culinary Director Bernie Matz, has been offering traditional Mexican favorites as well as unconventional and innovative interpretations, Bodega specializes in tacos and tortas, homemade sodas and authentic beverages in a dynamic, eclectic “puebla” inspired setting.

“We’ve always loved Fort Lauderdale and have been waiting for the right moment and location to open a Bodega Taqueria y Tequila there since we opened our first flagship location in South Beach in 2015,” said Keith Menin, Co-Founder & Principal of Menin Hospitality. “When we saw that they were developing and re-envisioning the riverfront, the new towers, and the Wharf, we found an iconic historic corner that just felt like Bodega. We couldn’t be more excited to welcome guests to Bodega Taqueria y Tequila, Fort Lauderdale.” 

Bodega Taqueria y Tequila has been revered as one of the hottest Mexican restaurants in America. GQ Magazine has named Bodega “the most popular restaurant in the entire state of Florida for late-night eats”;  InStyle Magazine said it’s one of “4 hot spots worth visiting on your next trip to Miami”; HuffPost called it the “hottest Mexican restaurants in America”; and Elite Daily boasted it as one of “Miami’s hottest nightspots.” A favorite among celebrities, fans include Michael B. Jordan, Niall Horan, Brody Jenner, Diplo, Jamie Foxx, Gabrielle Union, Travis Scott, Nina Agdal, and Joe Jonas, to name a few.

The dining area inside the restaurant is quite small offering up just one high top communal table, however, there are plenty of picnic tables set up along the sidewalk just outside for guests to sit down and enjoy their meal. Head up to the window of a decked out converted Silver Stream trailer and place your order.
Cervesas and Fruity Flavored Frozen Margaritas are available for your drinking pleasure.
Me with that happy look on my face as I knew I was about to dig in to some tasty food any moment
We tried a sampling of four of their tacos: carnitas (pork), carne asada (steak), pescado (fish) and tequila camarones (shrimp). To my surprise, the tequila camarones were both our faves.
The roasted pork quesadillas with a side of fresh guacamole were terrific.
I’m a huge fan of Mexican Street Corn and this one did not disappoint!
These churros with nutella were highly addictive!
We had no idea what was in store for us when Tyler, the awesome GM, lead us through this door to what appeared to be a graffiti walled “bathroom”…

 

But turned out to be the entrance to this amazing Late-Night Speakeasy!!!! (See details below)

Inside the taqueria, a door leads guests to Bodega’s late-night speakeasy – the perfect spot for happy hour, daytime fun, and late-night debauchery – that features an extensive cocktail menu and live music by local bands and DJs. Signature cocktails include the Pico Picante (Herradura Silver, Ilegal Mezcal, Cucumber, Cilantro, Jalapeno, Lime, Orange Bitters)La Diablita (Don Julio Blanco, Apricot, Blackberries, Ginger, Fresh Lime); and Mezcal Old Fashioned (Casamigos Mezcal, Ancho Reyes, Old Fashioned Syrup). Additionally, every Monday, Bodega is activating ‘Margarita Monday’ specials, where guests can enjoy a curated $5 margarita menu from 6 PM-close. Happy Hour is Monday – Friday from 6 PM – 8 PM, and offers $2 Classic Tacos, $3 Chips & Salsa, $4 Chips & Guac, $4 Bottled Beers, $5 Frozen Margaritas, and $7 Bottled Cocktails.

Open daily from 11:30 AM – 12 AM, Bodega Taqueria y Tequila, Fort Lauderdale mirrors the flagship South Beach location, doubling as a fast-casual taco joint and a late-night speakeasy-style lounge. The front half of the venue is a taqueria featuring an authentic Mexican street food menu created by culinary director and Chef Bernie Matz. Signature menu items consist of Loaded Carne Asada Nachos (Grilled Rib Eye Steak, Chili Queso, Cotija, Red Onion, Tomato, Cilantro, Chili Crema, Sliced Jalapeno); Late-Night Burrito (Guajillo Braised Short Rib, Roasted Pork, Roasted Chicken, Mexican Rice, Black Bean Refrito, Oaxaca Cheese, Potato Sticks, Salsa Rosada); and Steak Chimichurri Tacos  (Grilled Rib Eye Steak, Purple Cabbage, Tomato, Potato Sticks, Radish, Cilantro, Chimichurri Aioli). Guests order from a full-sized, retrofitted vintage airstream trailer turned into a taco truck and then dine in the garage chic seating of picnic tables, neon bar stools, and graffiti walls. In addition to the regular menu, a weekend brunch menu is available.

Bodega Taqueria y Tequila in Fort Lauderdale is located at 21 W. Las Olas Blvd, Fort Lauderdale, FL and can also be experienced in South Beach and in American Airlines Arena.  For more information, please visit BodegaTaqueria.com and follow on Instagram @BodegaTaqueria.

*Hours of operation are in accordance with mandated COVID-19 regulations and are subject to change. 

 

Until we eat again…

I send you delicious wishes, xo

Denise

New Ways Discover Food While Traveling

Posted By : Jennifer Ouvrard/ 297

Hello Foodie Friends,

Think about the food just in your state. It probably differs from one spot to another, based on who settled where and when, what they grew, where they originally came from, and what resources they had. History, people, preferences, and culture all play into regional food, and that’s what makes exploring it so interesting and diverse. And with road trips on the rise, digging into the food scene wherever you’re going, or wherever you live, can be a rewarding and delicious reward.

If you want to learn more about food, wherever you go, there are a couple of steps you can take. For starters, you can always contact your favorite food gurus here at Savor Our City.  Additional resources are local eats apps or local bloggers, who may also have a presence on social media sites such as Instagram. Many food magazines also have good regional recommendations. Want more tips? This graphic offers some ideas to get you traveling, eating, and enjoying what food has to offer.

Let us know if you found this info useful and if you have any additional tips that you turn to find great places to eat when you are traveling out of your home town.

 

Until we eat again…

I send you delicious wishes, xo

Denise