Calypso Restaurant & Raw Bar
Name: Doug Pearce
Occupation: Network Coordinator
Lives In: Coral Springs
Favorite Restaurant: Calypso
Reviewed Calypso: March 12th, 2008
If you’re looking for a place to go in Broward that offers a menu you don’t see every day – consider Calypso. Their menu contains a variety of choices that are all well prepared and very fresh. The restaurant has a tropical atmosphere that allows you to show up in your shorts and pay a bill that doesn’t break the bank. The owners and staff work to ensure that the place is always clean, friendly, and well run. Calypso offers consistently well prepared fresh dishes in an atmosphere that does a great job blending “neighborhood pub” with Caribbean casualness.
Name: Liana Sucar
Occupation: Communications Specialist
Lives In: Miami
Favorite Restaurant:La Cofradia
Reviewed Calypso: March 17th, 2008
The staff at Calypso greeted and sat us right away. Our waiter was friendly and helped us make our appetizer choices. I was immediately surprised when I saw their wine selection. They have a great Organic Zinfandel called Ladybug I have only found at a South Beach Wine Bar. The wine was great and my boyfriend found a great draft beer too.
We started our meal with a cup of conch chowder and order of conch fritters. The chowder was very good and I was happy to see they don’t skimp on the veggies and conch. It had a bit of a kick and was served at the perfect temperature. The same goes for the fritters - - they were firm and full of chewy conch and came with a great cocktail dipping sauce. My boyfriend didn’t enjoy them as much as I did, so that worked out well for me.
For an entrée, my boyfriend and I shared a Wahoo cutter (sandwich) platter with pigeon peas and rice. We were disappointed to find the Wahoo was dry and overcooked. We suspect it had been previously frozen, which indicates it wasn’t fresh. The Wahoo was served on a simple, untoasted Kaiser bun. I think the sandwich could have benefitted from a toasted bun, as both the fish and bread were dry and mealy. The fish was marinated in a Caribbean-style marinade which was tasty but barely distinguishable. I ended up asking for more of their great cocktail dipping sauce for the Wahoo and skipped much of the bun. The sandwich also comes with one slice of tomato and lettuce, neither of which add anything to the meal.
Unfortunately, the pigeon peas and rice were also on the dry and flavorless side. After a small taste, I ended up saving the calories and stomach space for dessert.
We ordered the Key Lime Pie after the waiter assured us it was homemade. He recommended the coconut pie and bread pudding first, but my boyfriend and I both like key lime pie, so that was the way to go. It wasn’t Key West good, but it wasn’t bad either. I suspect, however, the pie may have been frozen and thawed, therefore not tasting fresh. The whipped cream tasted store-bought.
Overall, I would go back to Calypso, if nothing else for their pleasant atmosphere and great conch fritters and conch chowder. I imagine their “fresh” seafood must also be good, so I would try another cutter or entrée platter in the future, perhaps a safer choice like dolphin. The Roti burgers also intrigued me for next time. I would need to be in the neighborhood as Calypso is over an hour drive from my home.
Name: Bridgette McLean
Lives In: Miramar
Favorite Restaurant: Sushi Blues Café
Reviewed Calypso: March 13th, 2008
Once on South Cypress Road, I wondered where exactly a restaurant would fit in the midst of the redevelopment area of Pompano Beach. To my surprise, the area opened up, and I saw a small quaint strip mall plaza with store front restaurants and a coin laundromat business. I instantly wondered how the show’s producers heard of this restaurant, but immediately suppressed those thoughts remembering some of the best food is found in the most eccentric areas and neighborhoods. Parking was abundant in the plaza’s lot, so I parked directly in front of the restaurant. Upon opening the door of the establishment, I felt an instant smile come over my face because of the familiarity of the décor. The waitress immediately acknowledged our presence and instructed us to pick our table and she would be right over. I chose a table in the back corner, because I wanted a panoramic view of the décor that seemed reminiscent of the Caribbean islands. Once I saw the Bahamian flag hung on the wall next to the tiki bar, it became obvious that the experience was going to be both memorable and interesting.
The waitress presented me with a menu and initiated that we view the chalk board filled with an assortment of specials for the day. I was so overwhelmed by the many choices. I knew that Calypso is a seafood restaurant, so on my drive to the restaurant, I envisioned possibly ordering oysters, salmon, or even snapper, but instead I was presented with an elongated menu that seemed like a scroll of options. The menu had the usual choices such as snapper, oysters, clams, soups, salads, sandwiches (referred to as cutter on the menu from island lingo) and lobster. Then I noticed that I could have Dolphin, filet mignon, and even authentic Caribbean cuisine such as Roti, jerk/ curried chicken, or even conch prepared various ways. I decided to order lightly fried conch, referred to on the menu as cracked conch (island lingo), and a side of homemade potato salad. I even noticed that the menu offered an array of both alcoholic and non-alcoholic Caribbean drinks. So I decided to order one of my favorite Jamaican sodas, Ting, which is carbonated grapefruit soda.
As I waited for the food, I started to pay close attention to how detailed the restaurant was decorated. I noticed many handmade items, from the hand-painted candle holder on each table, personalized colorful paintings of the beach/cultural landscape, handmade straw hats, wooden large sea gulls, sea shells, porcelain sea animals (lobster, sea horse, angel fish), and the straw roof over the main bar. These personalized items made me feel relaxed and then I wondered if the food would exude the flavorful taste of Caribbean cuisine. When the waitress brought the order, I was so anxious to taste the conch, since I have never tried fried conch. My first bite into the conch was met with an immediate smile of satisfaction! It was lightly breaded and fried with an even toned golden brown color and the potato salad was the best I have ever tasted with a balance of potatoes and light mayonnaise.
I finished the main course and ordered the flourless chocolate cake with vanilla ice cream as my dessert. The dessert was just as delectable as the meal.
After paying the bill, I was dissatisfied with the service, but impressed by the portion size and how flavorsome my meal was prepared. Experiencing the music, food, and relaxing atmosphere will certainly entice me into frequenting this restaurant whenever in the area.
I think it’s like a little slice of South Florida in a restaurant, located in a kind of funky area, strip mall. Must tries include; every Conch on the menu and a slice of Key Lime Pie.
Location: 460 South Cypress Road Pompano Beach, FL 33060
Phone: (954) 942-1633
Restaurant Owners: Chuck & Lora Ternosky
Executive Chef: Chuck Ternosky
Pastry Chef: Lora Ternosky
Type of Cuisine: Caribbean, Seafood
Signature Dishes: West Indies BBQ Shrimp, conch dishes, fresh fish
Vegetarian Options: Vegetable (?), lentil (?)
Alcohol Served: Beer & Wine
Corkage Fee: $15
Monday – 11:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.
Tuesday – 11:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.
Wednesday – 11:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.
Thursday – 11:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.
Friday – 11:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.
Saturday – Closed
Sunday – Closed
Meals Served: Lunch & Dinner
Prix Fix Menu: No
Average Dinner Price Range (per person, full meal, tax, 15% gratuity, w/o alcohol): $20-$25
Average Lunch Price Range (per person, full meal, tax, 15% gratuity, w/o alcohol): $11-$15
Payment Options: All major credit cards
Accept Reservations: No
Accommodations for Children: Yes
Dining Style: Casual
Disabled Access: Yes
Restaurant Size: 76 seats including bar
Accommodate Groups: No
Private Dining Room: No
Tables with Scenic Views: No
Outdoor Dining: No