IN THE MEDIA
Canadian Entrepreneurs in South Florida lament loss of Snowbirds, Eye 2021 Homecoming.
By James McCarten, The Canadian Press | December 5, 2020
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Each spring, near a south Florida seaside strip known as the Broadwalk, the grateful retailers and restaurateurs of Hollywood Beach gather for a two-day celebration of all things Canada.
“Canadafest” has played out for nearly 40 years in the heart of a uniquely Canadian diaspora south of Fort Lauderdale, a way of saying thank you to the roughly 1.2 million people from north of the border who visit the state annually.
The 2021 Canadafest was to be the biggest ever, said Denise Dumont, the editor-in-chief of Le Soleil de la Floride, the French-language community newspaper that helps organize the event.
COVID-19, of course, had other plans.
“The 2021 edition has been cancelled, for obvious reasons,” Dumont said. “We hope that later on, we’re going to be able to continue the tradition.”
It’s just one illustration of the looming “dark winter” the pandemic has wrought in the United States, where the number of single-day deaths and new infections have blown past earlier peaks established in the spring.
And in a part of the country that has come to embrace Canada’s seasonal visitors as family, the health risks and cross-border travel restrictions are sure to amplify the pain.
“It’s going to be a tough, tough season,” said Dan Serafini, a veteran Hollywood restaurateur who has been a fixture in the area since migrating from Sudbury, Ont., with his wife Lise-Anne in 1984.
Receipts for November are already trending about 30 per cent lower than previous years, Serafini said — a figure that reflects both a decline in Canadian traffic and a modest increase in the number of visiting Americans.
Serafini is looking forward to packing his restaurants with Canadians come next fall.
“I think the walls are gonna blow off,” Serafini said. “I think it’s going to explode if if this thing eventually gets under control.”
See the full article here: https://bit.ly/2JVb0PI
October 2019, Forbes Magazine—
“On North Ocean Drive, dive into seafood and snap selfies with spectacular sunsets at GG’s Waterfront Bar & Grill,
owned by veteran restaurateurs Dan and Lise-Anne Serafini, where chef Russ Aaron Simon reels in such crowd-approved dishes as harissa-spiced octopus (with marinated peppers, golden raisins, cured olives, potatoes and Moroccan chermoula); elote (Mexican street corn with cotija-crema aioli, tomatillo salsa verde and popcorn shoots); and local Wahoo crudo (with juzu-chili marinade, spicy mayo, shiso, radish and micro-flowers).
That’s just for starters. Main courses include seared ahi tuna (with black garlic tapenade, eggplant, cauliflower, balsamic onion, charred radicchio and arugula), cioppino (with clams, mussels, scallops, shrimp,calamari and local fish); and roasted salmon (with miso-ginger glaze, baby carrots, snow peas, bok choy and shiitake mushrooms). Save extra eating energy for pastry chef Dani Veit’s bananas Foster bread pudding (with Valrhona milk chocolate, caramelized white chocolate, candied walnuts, brûléed banana and butter pecan ice cream); chocolate bombe (with chocolate mousse, salted caramel, dark chocolate crumb and black raspberry sorbet); and Key lime pie (with macadamia-graham crust, white chocolate, strawberry coulis and dehydrated lime). At Sunday brunch, listen to live Caribbean music.”
Awarded 2016-2020 “Wine Spectator’s Award of Excellence”
The Award of Excellence recognizes restaurants whose wine lists feature a well-chosen assortment of quality producers along with a thematic match to the menu in both price and style.
Open Table Diners’ Choice 2014-2020 Winner
NEW TIMES Best Bar Reader’s Choice 2016 & 2019
Open Table Top 100 Best Al Fresco Dining Restaurants in America, 2016
Open Table names GG’s Waterfront to thier Top 100 Best Al Fresco Dining Restaurants in America, 2015 – Sun-Sentinel (read the full article here!)
Today, GG’s — an abbreviation of its former name — has evolved into the type of place you go for fresh seafood and alfresco dining, enjoyed with cocktail in hand on a mild South Florida evening. -By Nicole Danna, New Times, January, 27, 2015 (read the entire review- CLICK HERE)
“2015 Best Outdoor Dining Restaurant in America” – Open Table
Diners Choice Award “Top Ten Best Lunch Places” – Open Table
“Certificate of Excellence 2014-2017” – TripAdvisor
The Sun-Sentinal Raves: Eating Here, You’ve Got it Made!
Ever notice how visitors to South Florida want to eat with a water view? They’d do no better than at GG’s! The servers are professionals who know a thing or two about service.
“Restaurants like GG’s continue to raise their game when it comes to wine, and we are particularly proud to present this year’s winners,” – said Marvin R. Shanken, Editor & Publisher, Wine Spectator.
GG’s menu may be best described as classic steak and seafood meets modern South Florida. I can’t say enough about their bouillabaisse, which includes a half Maine lobster along with clams, mussels, scallops, shrimp and calamari in a classic saffron tomato broth. And it takes a real talent in the kitchen to pair coconut and mango curry with seafood, but it’s done expertly with pan-seared Florida Grouper. Another winner- the seafood risotto.
Red meat is a good choice. New Zealand lamb chops are marinated in herbs and citrus, and come off the grill wonderfully tender.
You can start with shrimp cocktail, or raw oysters, tuna tartare with kimchi and sesame or spring rolls filled with grilled chicken and roasted vegetables. There’s a fine Tiramisu on the dessert menu, but the real star is the unconventional Napoleon which starts with Phyllo dough instead of puff pastry, and gets classic cream
filling topped with fresh berries and preserves.
-John Tanasychuk, Sun-Sentinel, April 2012 (read the entire review by John Tanasychuk- CLICK HERE)
“Some of the best fresh seafood you’ll find in all of Florida… Service is phenomenal and the food is to die for. Best for:
Stunning views, fresh crab and impressing a date… Guests can enjoy the delights of this quintessentially American menu… my choice (for lunch)
is the lobster roll” –Anna Walker, Reader’s Digest, 2018
“GG’S Waterfront… an iconic favorite” – City & Shore Magazine, 2018
“The Bachelor Inspired Honeymoon Ideas… If you’re a fan of The Bachelor, check out some of these ideas that
appeared as date ideas on the show.” – Donna Kim, The Knot, 2018
The Miami Herald Says: Good Times, Gorgeous Sunsets at GG’s
We dove into a generous bowl of Prince
Edward Island mussels in an aromatic sauce of white wine, garlic and
fresh thyme with a splash of citrus… another GG’s keeper, Garden of Eden
flatbread, its snappy crust laden with grilled zucchini, yellow squash
and red bell peppers and Kalamata olive slices, complemented by a pesto
spread and a dusting of feta.
The stand-out entree was a seafood
risotto special that easily could have feed two – a feast of a Maine
Lobster half, plump shrimp, pan-seared scallops and calamari with
short-grain rice to soak up the sea-salty juices.
… the pan-seared sea bass was rich and
moist, set atop sauteed baby spinach and plated with roasted tomato and
basil aioli. Meat and potato choices include center-cut pork chops
brightened by a shitake-cognac sauce… GG’s is already a place for good
times, gorgeous sunsets, and of course, a little romance.
–Rochelle Koff, Miami Herald 2/2011
Service was phenomenal. Our waiter was
incredibly friendly and was always checking on us to make sure
everything was satisfactory. He could tell how much we enjoyed the food
as he took a look at our clean plates and said “Wow I can see you didn’t
– Vanessa P. on Yelp
They have a nice waterfront patio &
bar area where we were hanging out for most of the time. The bartenders I
interacted with were all cool and made some good drinks and when they
had to cook up 150+ dishes at once (for our holiday party), my filet
came out perfectly cooked, juicy & delicious.
– Ian G. on Yelp
This is one of our favorite places to
dine along the shore. Fabulous bars both inside and out under the stars!
Dining space also both in & out overlooking the Intracoastal. Food
is wonderful – especially the seafood. There’s a paella served over orzo
rather than rice and a bouillabaisse that would feed a family! The
simple fish preparations are light and fresh. Service is unobtrusive but
attentive. You cannot go away unimpressed.
– Open Table Diner
A landmark Hollywood restaurant is being reborn, with new owners, a
different name, an invigorated menu and a fresh new look at a familiar
Indeed, the couple (Dan and Lise-Anne
Serafini) who partnered in East Side Mario’s in Aventura Mall replaced
14 years of Greek flair and fare with casual American elegance. “We’ve
taken a lot of what Giorgio’s was and transformed it to more
approachable dining on the waterfront,’’ said Dan Serafini.
Gone are the rounded Greek columns,
traditional artwork, a painted sky blue ceiling and a nightclub dance
floor. Now, the place brings the outside indoors by emphasizing rustic
wood, vanilla walls, cool lighting and black-and-white photographs
depicting the beach, Hollywood broadwalk and Dania Pier.
– Eileen Soler, Miami Herald
“Build Up a Serious Appetite…You’re Gonna Need It! It’s
near mandatory that you chow down on the local delicacies… Expect to
feel VERY full after visiting! GG’s beautiful waterfront bar and grill
is known for their fresh seafood and stone crab, as well as breathtaking
views of the waterways while luxury yachts cruise by your table.”
–Sophie Boyden, MTV.com, 2018
“Sample the freshly-caught crab and lobster at GG’s
Waterfront Bar & Grill in Hollywood… The restaurant provides
excellent yacht-watching opportunities…”
–Daily Star, 2018