Boniato and 3030 Ocean

Last weekend I had the pleasure of dining at 3030 Ocean, which is a hotel/beach club on Ft Lauderdale beach. Normally I wouldn’t think much of a hotel restaurant, but this one was really good.

There was an appetizer of clams in a spicy lemongrass broth, which was great. I normally prefer living in the 100K+ range of the Scoville scale, but this broth managed to be spicy enough for me to enjoy, while still being edible for everyone else. I think the broth was intended as a complement to the clams, but I drained that bowl to the bottom. Spicy soups are definitely a great idea.

The particular thing that caught me was the entree. I went with the Florida snapper (remember kids — fresher is better) which was served with grilled green onions and boniato. Snapper was great — served with crispy skin on the fish — but the boniato is what really caught my attention.

Boniato is a plant that started being eaten in South America, and has since moved to the Caribbean, and then South Florida. I lived in South Florida for most of my life, and had never come across this, so I wanted to try it out. Turns out that it is awesome. It’s basically a potato — looks and feels like a regular white potato, but tastes like a sweet potato. If you have the opportunity to try it, I recommend it. It was served to me in mashed form, and I hope to reproduce this dish in the near future.

3030 Ocean on Urbanspoon

Chubby’s Family Restaurant – Orlando

They clearly love James Dean and Betty Boop — the walls are plastered with pictures — so the place has a real classic American-1950s feel to it. And, it seems, in the 1950s, breakfast was delicious.

I had Donna’s Skillet (served to me by Donna herself), which is

  • home fries
  • onions
  • corned beef hash
  • scrambled eggs
  • cheese

Add hot sauce and it’s great. The price is right for the food; $6 for the skillet. They got the food out fast, and kept my iced tea filled, so that does it for me. The service is totally unceremonious, the servers all work together to get it done.

It really seems like a one-of-a-kind, family-owned restaurant. I don’t think they could make another one — there’s not enough pictures of James Dean in the world to open a second place.

If you’re in the area, it’s worth a stop in for a quick simple breakfast. It sure beats the pants off Denny’s.

Chubby's Family on Urbanspoon