Executive Lifestyles - Dining & Spirits
Johnny V Good
625 E. las Olas Blvd., Fort Lauderdale
RIDING HIGH: The Caribbean Cowboy at his 200-seat Johnny V restaurant in Fort Lauderdale.
Johnny Vinczencz is the newest headliner to grace Fort Lauderdale's Street of Great Eats, aka Las Olas. Vinczencz made all kinds of news at previous local posts, including starting stints Max-imizing his talents at Max's Grille and Maxaluna in Boca Raton. He moved to Miami Beach, where for five years he attracted considerable attention and lots of hype as the "Caribbean Cowboy," merging his New Florida findings with accents from the islands. His Johnny V features exciting offerings not found on Las Olas -- or anywhere else in Florida.
Midday means such starter courses as skillet-seared barbecue-spiked jumbo shrimp with corn salsa, smoked rock shrimp potato salad and chipotle cocktail sauce ($14). Main plates include big salads such as rioja marinated grilled chicken breast with baby greens, shallot relish, grape tomatoes, manchego cheese and jamon serrano ($13) and fresh corn-crusted snapper in a soft taco with jalapeño-zapped tartar sauce, tomato salsa and red chile blue corn chips ($11). The special summertime new 'cue menu mixes and matches the likes of macaroni and goat cheese, yuca frita, baby green beans with molasses and apple bacon, and barbecue french fries ($11 to $16).
The dinner menu bristles with similarly innovative tastes. For starters, Jamaican jerk-seared fresh tuna with Callaloo stew and Bammy, otherwise known as coconut yuca cakes ($13), and roasted garlic clams sauteed with serrano ham in chile corn broth ($12), followed by a dozen "Primer Platos," ranging from $21 for a basil, rosemary and sage marinated half-chicken with truffle garlic Yukon mashed potatoes to $38 for surf and turf -- Maine lobster and American buffalo strip steak -- or the New York strip with Irish blue cheese butter. For finishers there's a cheese menu of some 40 international selections.