Big City Tavern is the perfect place to go with a group, especially when you can't agree on what kind of food you want. If someone wants a burger, they’ve got those.
Pizza? Yes. Something healthy? Yes. Seafood? Yes! Meat and potatoes? Definitely yes! It’s also the place to go when you want to be a little over-indulgent. I don’t know what it was, maybe that last bite of kale salad, but the hubby and I were both in the mood to be bad and order all those dishes we normally deny ourselves.
We sat down and looked at the appetizer section of the menu. It was tempting, with options such as; meatballs, fried calamari, coconut crusted shrimp and crab cakes. But we were into serious carb-loving madness, so we skipped past the charcuterie boards and each placed an order for Big City Tavern’s hand cut fries. And not just any fries, we went for the gourmet versions.
My husband was all exotic with his taters that were topped with wasabi, sriracha, micro cilantro and toasted sesame seeds. At first, I eyed the obvious contender; fries topped with beer cheese, gravy, bacon and scallions, but in the end, I opted for truffle Parmesan tubers drizzled with truffle oil and truffle salt and served with a side of Caesar aioli for dipping. Priced between $8.50 and $11, any of these dishes could serve as a table appetizer or a full meal. We hunkered down and finished at least half a plate each. I told you we were in the mood to indulge.
That mood continued as we eyed the entrée menu, skipping right past the salads (Caesar, wedge, burrata Caprese, chopped), we surveyed the vast selection; chicken Milanese, jerk chicken breast, shrimp pad thai, pastas, seafood, steaks and chops (I did mention something for everyone, didn’t I?).
I finally settled on the pan roasted 12 oz. pork chop, while my husband salivated in anticipation of his lobster macaroni and cheese. Neither of us was disappointed. My chop was a behemoth, cooked perfectly medium and with a pineapple glaze that augmented the tender meat perfectly. The large bowl of rich and creamy mac and cheese featured perfectly tender lobster, at least an entire crustacean’s worth.
In a continuation of our Bacchanalian adventure we even ordered dessert. My husband selected the Big City Sundae, an enormous confection with vanilla ice cream, chunks of pecan blondies, praline, and sauce. Usually the sauce is Whistle Pig Bourbon Butterscotch, but since my husband doesn’t drink or like the taste of liquor, the kitchen kindly substituted a regular caramel sauce. It was delightful.
My dessert was the only disappointment of the night. Listed on the menu as Steve's Carrot Cake, it is not as you might expect a slice of cake, instead it is a kind of deconstructed dessert. Destructed might be a better description. The carrot cake was the size and texture of a hockey puck. I couldn’t even cut it with a knife. Pity, because the caramelized pineapple and spiced brown sugar sauce accompaniments were quite good. Our otherwise attentive server didn’t comment on the uneaten dessert, maybe she thought we were just full.
Luckily, I also ordered the tasting flight of dessert cocktails. My favorite was the Key Lime Pie, a combination of Key Lime rum, cream, Absolute Vanilla vodka, and fresh Key Lime juice, but the other options flavored to taste like German chocolate cake, banana cream pie and a peanut butter and jelly sandwich were all delightful and yummy.
Big City Tavern
609 E Las Olas Blvd, Fort Lauderdale
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What To Eat: Rick’s Reviews
If you want to indulge yourself, check out one of these great bargains during Crave Fort Lauderdale
1200 E. Las Olas Blvd., Fort Lauderdale
The Crave menu offers a choice of starters; fish tacos, charred octopus or salt & pepper prawns. Entrée options are Peking duck, steak chimichurri or lobster curry. Green tea crème brûlée and Thai donuts are offered for dessert. The Crave menu is available for lunch and dinner Sunday through Thursday.
1140 Seabreeze Blvd., Fort Lauderdale
The Crave menu is only offered for dinner Sunday through Thursday, but includes appetizers such as seafood ceviche and fried oysters. For your entrée consider Sicilian fisherman seafood with shrimp, clams, and mussels or veal osso buco with agnolotti. A lemon tart and Belgian chocolate mousse with vanilla gelato are your dessert options.