Among my friends, I’ve become somewhat of a connoisseur of restaurant picks in the Miami-Fort Lauderdale area. It’s actually what lead to me starting this blog. Often, I’ll get a call, similar to the one I got this week, asking, “where’s a good place to……..?” There’ll be some brief back and forth in which I’ll ask things like, “how many persons are you thinking of having,” what do you feel like eating,” and, “what setting are you looking for?” I’ll render my recommendations and soon enough it’ll become a spot frequented by the same persons to whom it was suggested. This week it came down to Perricones or Ortanique on the mile. Once it was decided that the birthday girl wanted something a little less casual I told her Ortanique would be best.
I’ve been to the eatery quite a few times and each time I’ve enjoyed nothing short of an outstanding meal. Even the best Zagat restaurants can have forgivably mediocre days, but it seems I’ve lucked out on every reservation. The setting is very warm, and though it can be quite romantic, it’s not the kind of romantic that wards of singles (for example, Miami Beaches STK). The longer you’re in-house the more submerged you become in your surroundings. The hustle and non-stop action outside doesn’t creep into the setting even a bit.
Ortanique’s award-winning wine-list is vast. You’ll be sure to find one of your favorites. If not, feel free to ask for assistance in making your choice. The food is also made to perfection. Medium-well ACTUALLY means medium-well. The Caribbean seasonings used are unique in their sophistication. If your from the islands, you won’t miss your curried spices, mango chutney or eclectic number of peppers or spices. However, Ortanique’s menu is so refined that while it may taste like home it’s not quite a creature comfort. The servers are attentive and their weave through the tables is a smooth, unassuming, sway. Your water and wine glasses will always be filled by staff who have the most unimposing demeanor you may not have noticed how often they came by.
If you haven’t been to Ortanique on the mile, just GO. Click here to see the restaurant’s menu.
Appetizer: West Indian Curried Fresh Jumbo Lump Crabcake (a must, just an absolute must. I’ve made the mistake of sharing this appetizer more than once. Don’t) $16
Entrée: Jerked Double Pork Chop $28
Dessert: Warm Bread Pudding a la mode $8