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Shareef Malnik got his steakhouse start by peeling potatoes and flipping hash browns as a teen at his father’s The Forge in Miami Beach.

Peter Zwiener remembers taking the subway to Brooklyn with his mother and brother to see their dad, then the head waiter at the venerable Peter Luger Steakhouse. The aroma of sizzling butter on meat and the exuberant faces of diners made an impression on the boy.

Michael Stillman and his elementary-school classmates would take field trips to his dad’s Smith & Wollensky in midtown Manhattan and marvel at the chefs.

None of the three intended to make careers out of the restaurant business. But all of them wound up following in their fathers’ footsteps, and today the father-son teams of Malnik, Zwiener and Stillman are the driving forces behind three of South Florida’s top steakhouses: The Forge, Wolfgang’s and Quality Meats.

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