Meander on in, nestle yourself into a chair situated under the extended sidewalk awning and prepare to enjoy a laid-back eatery and some creative comfort food. Sweet Nectar has been open for the last couple of months in the heart of Ft. Lauderdale's restaurant/gallery row.
It's an unpretentious place located on the very pretentious East Las Olas Blvd. and so far it seems to be catching on with the locals. Our very astute waiter Tony said, "We want to offer down-home food that has a sensational creative twist on familiar menu items such as burgers, ribs and even marshmallows."
Start off with some handmade crafted cocktails. Expect to be pleasantly surprised with the assortment of sweet and surprising spirits such as Mountain Berry Shrub ($14), which contains 44 North huckleberry vodka, rhum-clement, creole shrub, black berry syrup, fresh lemon, ginger beer and rosemary.
See, I told you it was going to be surprising. Another exciting glu-glu was My Rosy Cheeks ($14), which is made with azunia organic platinum tequila, agave nectar passion fruit puree, a heavy portion of chipotle pepper, fresh lime and a dash of house made grenadine. As the saying goes, "that'll put hair on your chest."
The food menu is just as diversified. We tried the Dinosaur Beef Short rib, Korean style ($26). The meat in fact did fall off the bone, and easily fed two people. The dish that I never thought I would enjoy was the roasted Brussels sprouts ($8), with kimchee vinaigrette. I don't even like Brussels sprouts. I loved this dish and actually asked for seconds.
Chef Rafael Vasquez said, "What our charcoal cooking brings to the table is the healthy heaping of aroma compounds and wonderful flavors. Cooking over charcoal makes food taste like it's enveloped in bacon."
For dessert we had Campfire S'mores that were prepared at table-side. Yep, marshmallows, chocolate, sandwiched in-between crackers. Oh and yes, we pierced our marshmallows with sticks, held them over a small campfire and watched them get lightly blackened.
Sweet Nectar Charcoal Grill & Spirits serves lunch, dinner, and libations with a Mediterranean inspiration. The menu features items from their custom designed charcoal grill incorporating traditional Japanese cooking methods. They are located at 1017 East Las Olas Blvd., Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. Details: www.sweetnectarbuzz.com or call 954.761.2122.