Kraft Bistro & Deli
Kraft Bistro & Deli: 2701 E Oakland Park Blvd, Fort Lauderdale, 33306
I heard about Kraft Bistro & Deli in one of the local foodie Facebook groups. The concept sounded interesting, and I am always up to try somewhere new. I asked my friend Tim to join me and the two of us decided to go on a Friday night. Thinking it would be busy, I went online and made a reservation. Apparently, they use Clover as their POS system, and it has its own online reservation system. But it doesn’t exactly work the way it is supposed to. You will get an email confirmation immediately asking you to verify your reservation. That makes no sense to me at all since I just made the reservation. Then you will get another email after verifying that says that your reservation is still not confirmed. There is supposed to be yet a third email that comes when the restaurant confirms a reservation.
However, for me, that third and final confirmation never came. So on the day of our reservations, I called what I thought was the restaurant’s phone number since it was listed in the first email as being their contact number. Turns out this is actually the owner’s cell phone. His name is Paul and a nice guy who did confirm that my reservation indeed was in their system. Once seated for a while at the restaurant we were approached because they thought my reservation was for 6 people not 6 pm apparently. That gave us a good chuckle. I guess I was supposed to bring more friends with me.
One thing that was really nice to find out is that their happy hour was 50% off everything. Not sure if it is like that every night, but we took advantage of those prices.
There are two sections to Kraft Bistro & Deli. You have a small little deli on one side. They claim to be a New York-style deli. However, there are only two soups every day plus a special soup of the day to choose from. You can get the same salads they have on the restaurant side and choose to add egg salad, chicken salad, tuna salad, grilled chicken, or salmon for a few dollars more. You can also choose from a selection of hot and cold sandwiches like the traditional corned beef, Rueben, Rachel, and even a Cuban sandwich. They even have a few specialty sandwiches including a Chicago and NYC dog. Not sure those are really from a real NYC deli though.
While it might be authentic like some other locations in South Florida, it is still worth checking out.
Now if anyone remembers The Grille On The Drive, then you are going to recognize some of the menu items here. Since the owner is the same one who owned that and also owns the Manor/The Venue in Wilton Manors.
There is a nice outdoor seating area with quite a few tables set up for two and four people. For bigger groups, they can easily push them together to make more space. Inside you will be greeted by the hostess and the bar. There is enough seating at the bar for roughly ten people. The inside seating is nicely spread out with a mix of tables of various sizes, a couple of larger booths, and a wall of booth/chair communal-style seating. The decor is fun and a mix of styles. The bar is surrounded by some really cool graffiti-style tiles that Tim and I both commented on.
I was a little surprised that it was not busier for a Friday night, but having just opened up a few months ago, it looks like word has not gotten out yet about this place. Our server Loretta was amazing and all of the staff were incredibly attentive.
Like I said you will probably recognize a few things from the owner’s previous endeavors. Kraft Bistro & Deli has twelve appetizers that are listed on the menu for you to choose from. We ended up going for the crab cake which Tim and I shared. They served a Maryland-style lump crab cake with a grain mustard aioli and arugula salad. They could have kept the salad off, but the crab cake itself was extremely delicious. We both agreed that the flavor mixed perfectly with the grain mustard aioli. We discussed how they could actually turn this into an entree by having two crab cakes served with a side or two. Unfortunately, that is not something that is available.
You also can choose to start with a soup. There are two that are on the menu every day – French Onion made with caramelized onions, beef broth, crouton, gruyere cheese, and Tomato Basil a creamy tomato-basil bisque with mini grilled cheese. There is also a soup of the day that changes and you can just ask your waiter/waitress for what today is.
The Main Course:
For our main course, Tim opted for the Strawberry Fields salad. I think he might have had that Beatles song Strawberry Fields Forever on his mind when he ordered. A large bowl plate was filled with mixed greens, romaine, fresh strawberries, candied pecans, goat cheese, key lime vinaigrette. Tim asked for a side of ranch to go with his salad as well. He loved the goat cheese and fresh strawberries. He added shrimp to his salad which he told me were cooked perfectly. This would be something he would eat again. Everything was fresh and mixed well together.
For my meal, I could not decide between the Filet Gorgonzola, The Chicken Dijon, the Kraft Meatloaf, or the Kraft burger. After mulling it over for a bit, I ended up choosing the Kraft Meatloaf. Now I will preface by saying that I am very fussy when it comes to meatloaf and very few restaurants come up to my high standards compared to what I make myself at home. They use a signature blend of beef, herb, and spices and include carrots in the mix. I’ve never been a fan of when people do that as it is not natural for a carrot to be in meatloaf. While the meal was good, they could definitely use more flavor in their mix by not just using beef and adding more spice. My meal was accompanied by Yukon gold mashed potatoes, broccoli which looked like broccolini, but thankfully it was not, and crispy onion straws with gravy on top and on the side. The gravy helped to enhance the flavor enough that I ate most of the meatloaf. It was a very big portion so I did not finish it all, but I did also like the potatoes and broccoli.
I would say that anyone would be happy with the various items on this menu at Kraft Bistro & Deli. There is a good amount to choose from and in my opinion, you can’t go wrong.
Pricing $$$-$$$$: The pricing will be dependent upon what you order, and what drinks you order! Kraft Bistro & Deli is a great spot for a date night for all you couples out there.