Donald Trump’s longtime butler, Anthony Senecal, spoke Wednesday at City Fish Market (Glades near the Turnpike). West Boca based Gold Coast Tiger Bay Club hosted the event which was the biggest we’ve seen. There were roughly 80 guests plus 20 media in attendance.
Senecal has caught a bit of media attention recently, in part for his suggestion that President Obama should be hanged, and before that for his insights into Trump’s lifestyle.
Senecal was introduced by attorney Peter Ticktin, who graduated from New York Military Academy with Trump and was close to him at the time. Ticktin spoke highly of Trump as an honorable man, and included an amusing tidbit about how the school taught both of them how to tie a tie (Double Windsor).
Senecal is a great storyteller. He started by describing the history of Mar-a-Lago and his first boss there, Marjorie Post. Most of his stories were entertaining but did not show much substance.
In Senecal’s telling everyone he worked with at Mar-a-Lago, including Post, Trump, and everyone in Trump’s family, were smart, extremely smart, brilliant, incredible to work for, generous, funny, etc. Everything was positive.
Responding to questions from the audience, Senecal admitted the Donald Trump he worked with spoke very differently from the soundbites of his campaign – more intelligently of course. He also admitted that he only remembers the good moments and for the most part has blotted out the bad ones.
It was an entertaining lunch, but not all that illuminating.
West Boca’s Barry Epstein has a relatively new group he describes as a non-partisan political club, The Gold Coast Tiger Bay Club. Barry is in the background of the picture above talking with the speaker from the event on September 10th, Roger Stone.
Stone spoke at length to a small audience that seemed to hang on every word. His main focus was his new book, Nixon’s Secrets.
While this author dislikes Stone (I’m currently suing him), one has to credit him for being a captivating storyteller. The new book follows on Stone’s JFK conspiracy book, The Man Who Killed Kennedy – The Case Against LBJ.
The problem with Stone is his long history of lying and deceit. He may tell a good story, but you can never know when he’s being truthful, telling outright lies, or if he even knows or cares what the truth is.
There has been extensive reporting in recent months about Stone’s involvement in apparent corruption in the Broward Sheriff’s Office, from both the Sun Sentinel and Miami’s Channel 10.
When Epstein previously scheduled Stone for a talk regarding his JFK-LBJ book I warned him about Stone’s past, and Epstein didn’t care. Anyone who watches Stone for any length of time struggles to accept one of the sad realities of our political system – that most people not only ignore a person’s dishonesty but embrace it if it’s colorful, interesting, or on their side of the political spectrum.
On the bright side, Epstein’s has created an organization that brings in interesting speakers to West Boca. In May the club hosted the exiled Crown Prince of Iran who spoke to a large audience. Also, City Fish Market put on a nice lunch.
Seven Boca restaurants received warnings in late July and early August from inspectors. Despite receiving formal warnings requiring follow-up inspections, their overall numbers weren’t that bad compared to some other restaurants we’ll discuss below. This report covers inspections up to August 8th.
The worst of the warnings was Stir Crazy in Town Center, with 8 violations including rodent activity. Owners of properties affected by such a rodent infestation may want to call in pest control services, like those found here, in order to deal with the problem once and for all. The rodent problem was cleared the next day but they still had 4 minor violations on the follow-up inspection.
West of the Turnpike, Sybarite Pig had only 3 violations which is a pretty low number. One was related to hand washing and another a fairly minor deviation in food temperatures. It looks like the warning was for the third violation, lack of proof of employee training and that will mean a follow-up inspection.
Bruce’s of Great Neck had zero “high priority” violations and five minor ones, but also was missing proof of employee training.
Four other places east of the Turnpike showed up on the warning list. Abe & Louie’s on Glades had three “high priority” violations including food temperature issues. That led to a follow-up inspection the next day which was perfect.
Nick’s New Haven Pizzeria had 8 violations including food storage and food temperature, and also a problem with proof of employee training.
Le Rivage received a couple of warnings related to documentation on smoked salmon and “not maintaining mussel for 90 days,” along with a chlorine sanitizer problem.
The last warning was for the Subway on Palmetto Circle South, and again it appears to be for employee training documentation.
Outside of the warnings, the worst inspection in this report goes to City Fish Market near the Turnpike with 21 total violations including 5 ranked “high priority.” Those five were:
3 Live flies in the front bar.
Dishwasher handled soiled dishes or utensils and then handled clean dishes or utensils without washing hands.
Employee failed to wash hands before putting on new set of gloves to work with food.
Food container stored in lettuce draw used for customer consumption. **Corrected On-Site**
Potentially hazardous (time/temperature control for safety) food cold held at greater than 41 degrees Fahrenheit. Olive with blue cheese at 66°. Corrective action taken and olive we’re put on ice and by the end of inspection olives with the blue cheese was at 41° **Corrected On-Site**
Others with big numbers include Taverna Kyma in East Boca with 17 violations including 5 high priority (17/5); Regency Japango (near Yamato and Jog with 13/2); It’s All Greek (13/2) and Shorty’s Bar-B-Q (13/5) in The Reserve at Clint Moore and 441; and Rocco’s Taco’s (12/1) near Town Center. Jimmy the Greek Taverna on Glades near Boca Rio had 11 violations but all were minor. Apparently the inspectors were after the Greeks this month. Shorty’s also had a poor inspection in late March.
On the bright side, six restaurants had perfect non-callback inspections. Vinny’s All Day Cafe in Regency Court along with the Dunkin Donuts in the same plaza, and four other fast food joints – McDonald’s on Palmetto Park near Powerline, Subway and Burger King on Glades just west of Boca Rio, and Domino’s in Mission Bay Plaza.
Confession: We’ve been in Mission Bay Plaza hundreds of times and never noticed a Domino’s Pizza.
Other West Boca notables in the inspections include:
Regency Court (Jog & Yamato)
Lucille’s Bad to the Bone BBQ – 10/2
Meatball Room – 5/0
Yamato & 441
Puccini’s Pizzeria – 10/2
Gary Woo Express – 5/1
TGI Friday’s – 7/3
IHOP – 3/0
Einstein Brothers Bagels – 9/1
Boston Market – 4/1
Boca Village Square
Juice and Java – 5/0
Duffy’s Sports Grill – 5/2
Davito’s in Boca Greens, with a fairly low 5 violations including 1 high priority
Miller’s Boca Ale House on Glades west of Lyons – 8/0
Bagelworks (near Boca Rio) – 7/0
Olive Garden (Powerline south of Palmetto Park) – 4/1
Sal’s Italian (near Olive Garden) – 3/0
Steven’s Pizzeria (West Boca Square) – 8/0
— Note that the name has changed to Lenny’s Kosher Pizza. We’re not sure if the inspection is for the old place or the new one.
Pizza Chef Bistro (441 near the county line) – 6/2
Also, there were several inspections in the plazas just east of Town Center:
Hooters – 3/1
Toojays – 6/0
Gyroville – 4/1
Shane’s Rib Shack – 3/3
Corner Bakery Cafe – 3/1
Five Guys – 1/1