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Hot Dish

Barbatella is Naples’ hottest new spot, by the corner of Third Avenue South and 13th Street South. The sister restaurant to Sea Salt features fresh Italian comfort foods from panini, arancini and pizzas to rotisserie and grilled favorites. Its spacious beautiful bar and an outdoor café are tops for people watching. Lunch al fresco on delicate, crisp calamari, great wood-fired pizzas, chicken and pear salad, or grilled swordfish. Dine by the open kitchen and brick oven on roast heirloom pork, Long Island duck and beef filet with peppercorn sauce. Enjoy the large portions and attentive service. 1290 Third St. S., Naples, 263-1955, barbatellanaples.com

Naples’ Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar has been a favorite for celebrating birthdays and special occasions with prime hand-cut steaks and seafood. Insiders start with happy hour’s $6 cocktail, appetizer and wine specials. Fleming’s new terrifically priced set of small plates and salads are the talk of the town. I flipped over the lobster tempura with jicama and apple salad, seared New Bedford scallops, New Zealand petite lamb chops and jumbo lump crab cakes. Finish with cheesecake or chocolate lava cake. 8985 Tamiami Trail N., Naples,
598-2424, flemingssteakhouse.com

Stillwater Grille opened in Fort Myers at the former site of Lush and Cin Cin. There’s a unique special emphasis on craft beers selected from around the world, fine wines from $30-$150 and wild-caught seafood. Kick up your heels with live jazz music weekdays and dancing after 10:30 on weekend nights. I recommend leisurely going from the dining room to the lounge for live music and finishing the evening under the stars with a cool drink. The new owners kept some of Lush’s tantric tapas and added new creations like barbecue shrimp over cheddar grits, seafood du jour, steak au poivre with scallops and the goat cheese, spinach and artichoke burger. 13451 McGregor Blvd., Fort Myers, 791-8554, www.stillwatergrille.com

Read the “Hot Dish” blog.

In the February’s Divine Pastries feature, the photo that was labeled as Chef Eric Truglas of Lush Bakery was actually of his co-chef Andre Gratesol. We regret the error.

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