If you are like most people, you have not even heard of Valentino's or Kitchenetta in Fort Lauderdale.. they do not advertise, and quite frankly, they don't have to! The food is so good that you will wish someone had told you sooner!! Relax Sugar! Here's the Qween's suggestions:
I imagine that you have driven past this place before and never given it a second thought.. from the outside, few would. Nestled next to a T-Mobile store and a convenience store that sells porn and sodas, Valentino's quietly sits on US 1 in Fort Lauderdale roughly 1/2 block North from US1 and Davie intersection. (located in a shopping mall next to Blockbuster's). However, upon entering inside you will be transported to another world thanks in large part to the wonderful Italian cooking coming from the large open aired kitchen to your immediate left.
Ohh! I could go on for a while about the atmosphere, the wonderful, attentive staff, or the amazing wine list. But the true feature is the FOOD!! The specials are always wonderful and creative- the hogfish, if available, is a must. On the menu, the Sunday gravy is consistently amazing with rich, delicious flavors and a huge portion to eat the following day(s). As an appetizer, the butternut quash tortellini with crushed ammaretto cookies as garnish is breathtaking.
This is not a place for children or people who want a quick, cheap meal. This is real Italian cooking, made from scratch, and yes, that means it costs a little more. But, for a treat, it is beyond the right choice. Reservations are recommended and dress is business casual.
I truly thought that this place sold imported kitchen wares, and passed it routinely on my way North on US 1 towards Oakland Park. (Located across from the Harley Davidson dealership) 1/2 mile from Oakland intersection. However, once i went, i have gone over and over and over again!! (Atmosphere wonderful, free valet parking, outside seating, witty and attentive wait staff)
Again, this is amazing Italian food cooked in the traditional style... one side of the menu is Italian- the other English. The food choices are amazing, and the portions are HUGE and come in individual size (what i thought was family size!!) and family size (enough to feed a table of Alabama football players!!)
The specials are phenom, and change depending on what is in season. Always fresh, always delicious! However, the selection is routinely expansive and you will find that you have to narrow your choice down. As an appetizer, I would mandate that you try the Rissotto balls.. They will melt in your mouth and make you squeal with delight!! The salads are always fresh and the bread is baked to order on their open hearth!!
The prices at Kitchenetta are more afforable than those at Valentino's, and a table of 4 can usually expect to pay around 35 each, including wine.
Very casual environment, limited children running amuck.. A must do for a night out!!