Thursday Deals at Acqualina and Essensia; Outback Out, The Spot Removed

$29 Dinner at Essensia
On Thursday nights, Essensia Restaurant now features a special two-course dinner for $29. Executive chef Frank Jeannetti has been winning praise for his clean, innovative cooking style. Guests can choose between appetizer selections such as Ahi tuna two ways, pan-roasted seafood cake, and watermelon/feta cheese salad. Entree choices include tandori seared wild salmon, sweet chili glazed lollipop pork chop, and coffee-lacquered braised beef short ribs. If you prefer dessert over a starter, you can sample the huckleberry créme breulee or orange hazelnut cheesecake. More choices abound in each category.

Also: A new Thursday night Happy Hour, from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Essensia Lounge, brings complimentary prosecco for the ladies, and world music by local artists for all.

Essencia at The Palms Hotel & Spa
3025 Collins Ave., Miami Beach

Get Out, Outback! Run Spot, Run!

Who would've thunk the victim of SoBe's steakhouse wars would be

Outback, the lower-priced, national chain? As for The Spot, the

sandwich place on Alton Road -- decent enough po-boys, but heavy stuff,

and one presumes it's tough competing with Subway's $5 deal -- half

what The Spot had to charge.

Marc vs. Marc Cook-Off Tonight at Acqualina

Acqualina Resort & Spa will

present a culinary cook-off between its executive chef Marc Debas and

visiting chef Marc Cummings (trained and certified as a master chef at

the prestigious Cordon Bleu in Paris). Which Marc will hit his mark?

For $85 you'll get to find out, and also be privy to passed canapés

such as jumbo shrimp cocktail and "smoked salmon butterflies with

caviar painted wings," and a sprawling buffet spread with appetizer

station (including fondu demo by Debas); main course station (with

risotto demo by Cummings); and a dessert station centered by a

chocolate fountain. Festivities run from 7 to 9 p.m.

Acqualina Resort & Spa on the Beach

17875 Collins Ave., Sunny Isles Beach


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Miami New Times' restaurant reviewer for the past decade, and the world's indisputable master of disguise.
Contact: Lee Klein