don-susan-demeritte_web.jpgFirst and foremost, I would like to say that I have started a new workout routine; not a resolution, I don’t make those.

I’m trying to get Hip-Hop abs by summer time and – as a former belly dancer – I have strong, yet soft abs.

I have to work really hard.  My biggest issue is eating.  I love to eat as much as I love watching movies. So in the name of giving you my critical opinion of food, because you know I’m good at that, I have gained about two pounds.  Allow me to explain.

As I sit in on my bed, typing away at my laptop, I am full.  This evening, I have eaten small servings of steak, salmon, chicken, spinach, bread, sea scallops, crab cakes, sea bass and a small key lime pie.

Now, I know that if I’m going to review a restaurant, I have to sample as much food as possible. But a girl can’t have that much decadent food and not want to guzzle water, or Pepto-Bismol, depending on how strong the stomach.

On opening night of the fabulous establishment that calls itself Morton’s The Steakhouse on Jan. 12, I worked the room, getting reactions from a few of the patrons to see how they feel about the new restaurant at 500 E. Broward Boulevard, at the intersection of U.S. 1 in Fort Lauderdale.

“Morton’s is excellent.  The décor is off the chain,” said Don Demeritte, an entrepreneur from Nassau, Bahamas, who attended the opening with his wife, Susan. “I hope to facilitate a Morton’s in the Bahamas.”

With locations all around the United States, Morton’s is home to many a steak fan with such a wide variety of meats and fish to choose from that it’s a wonder the chefs have the patience to cook it all.

“This establishment is fantastic: great location, the service is impeccable, and the ambiance is great,” said Dr. Lanalee Sam, who attended the opening event with her brother, Garth Sam.

Located in Downtown Fort Lauderdale, Morton’s is decorated like any fancy restaurant: rich mahogany colors, crisply dressed wait staff, flowing white and red wine, a full bar, and workers with ready smiles plastered on their faces. It’s Pleasantville for the meat and seafood eater. 

I, myself, am a seafood eater, so I was ready and willing to partake in the tastes of the sea from the moment I stepped into the steakhouse. 

My favorite menu item is the sea scallop, which is wrapped in bacon.  It’s my seafood dream come to life.  When I took my first bite, I almost fainted from the sheer perfection of it.  I could have gorged on the sea scallops alone and been as happy as a fat cat who ate the plump canary.

My second favorite menu item is the key lime pie.  I’m not a key-lime-pie fan because of the twanginess (is that a word?) that follows every bite, but this key lime pie doesn’t make me sour-faced at all.  It makes me want to run away to a key-lime-pie-making factory.  (Am I dramatic or what?)

“I’m impressed; they want to make sure people leave here happy,” said Garth Sam. “As you can tell, I left the restaurant quite happy and quite full. I was also impressed with the patron response of how Morton’s has a positive community involvement, which affects the people in the surrounding area.’’

On opening night, Morton’s housed a silent auction benefiting the Broward County Library’s Literary Feast, which is scheduled for March 21.

Tyra Bacon, a board member of the Broward Public Library Foundation said, “Morton’s is a tremendous asset to the community.”

I can’t be too picky about Morton’s, given its mixture of high-end patrons and philanthropic works to support the community.  It’s commendable.  However, what kind of reviewer would I be if I didn’t completely examine this establishment?

While the ambiance in Morton’s is understated, and they have the best-tasting scallops on this side of the state of Florida,
I have a few minor complaints.  My chicken Christopher was bland, my sea bass was a little on the salty side, the wheat bread was a little on the cardboard side, and the salmon left something to be desired.  I know it’s shameful to rave and rave and then down the food, but that’s what I do.

Other than those few pimples, the face of Morton’s is spot free; and quite delicious.  I have now become a huge fan of the establishment.

In closing, I would like to sum up my experience. In the words of the Morton’s Downtown Fort Lauderdale hostess, Melissa Beckles, a 2006 graduate of Johnson & Wales University and a part-time event planner for Glamorous Events by Mary, “Morton’s is the best company I’ve ever worked for and the food is really good. I can’t wait to use my holiday gift card.”

And I can’t wait to go back to Morton’s to gorge on sea scallops and key lime pie.

I’m sure to have sweet, tasty dreams about them. I’m sure the visual probably seems a little off-putting, but in my head, they’re heaven on a plate.

For more information about the Morton’s menu and locations in your area, you can go to

Photo by Khary Bruyning. Don Demeritte and his wife, Susan.