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Delray Dining not so good

please....does anyone reccomend a restaurant in Delray Beach? There is no mexican or greek that is worth talking about. The hype is very overdone and I would love to know any secrets I may be missing.

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  1. I'm afraid if that is the cuisine you seek then Delray is not your cuppa. Somewhat upscale dining along Atlantic Ave is available in a wide variety of spots - some quite good by previous posters opinions and many places both casual and upbeat. Cafe Luna Rosa across from the beach had been a favorite of mine for years but has slipped a little. That doesn't mean I won't return this winter. I enjoy the ambiance and the location as well as the food - service can be variable when it gets busy.
    If you should crave a real burger joint, go to Atlantic Av and continue over the tracks. Look to the right at the intersection with Linton and place your order - dandy.

    1. The funny thing about authentic ethnic food finds is that you generally have to find them where the bulk of local first-generation people of that ethnicity live, work or play. There's a fair sight more Greek AFAIK just to the south in Boca, for instance, and though Delray has something of an immigrant Mexican presence, it's nothing like the areas north of Boynton, particularly Greenacres, Lake Worth and West Palm.

      I'd be suprised, though, to hear that there are no Greek restaurants in Delray at all; Greek's something of a fad food around here lately. Anyone capable of whipping up a bowl of tzatziki seems to be opening a noisy Greek place with belly dancing this year.

      On a similar-to-but-not-the-same-as-Greek note, there's a Turkish place in the plaza at the corner of US1 and Linton. Curiously, I saw it on a list of business on an Armenian-American website.

      1 Reply
      1. re: hatless

        Taverna Kyma is opening any day now on Federal south of Linton/north of Yamato. It's just south of Delray; we'll see how good it is. The restauraneurs behind Taverna Opa et al are responsible. It's supposed to have a seafood slant.

      2. Hello again Idineout, yes, I absolutely agree that Delray is very commercial and thus over-rated. It's more of a destination than a food focus. With that said, I like Tramonti for pulpa, Dada for sitting outside and eating their crabcakes and maple-glazed salmon (and I like their bread, it's infused with Rosemary or maybe it's Tyme), Lemon Grass for creative sushi rolls (but the seating sucks), City Oyster for HUGE salads filled with more than just greens. Hmmm....that's about it, but I have not tried a few others. And, tomorrow I have a date at 32 East which I love the menu, but need to see if the food translates from menu to palate!! Stay tuned.

        1. There's plenty of good food in Delray, esp on Atlantic. It is a tourist destination, so you have your share of not-so-good places trying to take some of the business. I agree there's no good Mexican or Greek, but that's pretty much a problem in S. Florida in general. By the way, Baja in Boca is the best Mexican I've had in S Florida (doesn't say much). There's great Asian and Italian in Delray. Kyoto for sushi was wonderful last time we went. J&J was great seafood and steaks and refreshingly low-key - noncommercial for sure. I would stay away from Napa which is next door unless you want a liquor drink. Truly the epitome of awful cheesy Florida (I am a native). 32 East is fantastic if sometimes lackluster on service. Dada is also very good with a fantastic atmosphere. Falcon House has pretty good food and becomes a late-night scene that can be fun. Rocky's Italian Bistro for great Italian and a great wine list. City Oyster was a pleasant surprise, because it exceeded my expectations. Got married at the Delray Beach Marriott and, when I was there, they had a ridiculous sunday brunch that was well worth the price tag. Luna Rosa is also fun for breakfast if a bit pretentious and with a long wait.

          1. Sazio, a casual intimate spot on the Avenue (131 E.). They have a nice wine list as well.

            1. I agree, the food choices in Delray Beach, Florida are miserable unless you think Outback is fine dining... if you're used to eating at real steakhouses, real French restaurants you'll have to do some serious searching and be prepared to spend some money...

              You mentioned Mexican and Greek... well, here's the answer:

              For "Mexican", go to La Bamba on West Atlantic Avenue... if you think Mexican is only tacos and burritos then it's about the best Mexican you can get, if you want truely authentic Mexican Cuisine you'll have to go to Rosa Mexicana in Palm Beach Gardens... this is a New York City transplant, the Florida version is almost as good and not as expensive... highly recommended.

              So far I have not found a good Greek restaurant anywhere in South Florida (that includes Mykonos in Boca and the Fort Lauderdale Greeks)... most of the Greek restaurants I've found are the sluvaki variety... Taverna Kyma sounds promising though...

              As far as other restaurants to visit in Boca, Delray Beach... here you go:

              http://www.cliffordhelsel.com

              1 Reply
              1. re: chelsel

                Now that you mention Greek, I recommend trying Taverna Plaka in southern Boynton. Not a souvlaki joint, not a crazy disco. White tablecloths, dim lighting, and on my one visit a few days ago, decent food. The grilled octopus was more baked or broiled than grilled, but flavorful and tender. The agvolemono was above average, the peasant salad was delicious and had actual red tomatoes and very good (I'm guessing Bulgarian) feta. The lamb shank wasn't the most tender I've ever had, but the seasoning was fantastic, full of cinnamon and allspice, and the juices were delicious with the orzo. The feta dip and the tzatziki were very good versions, too, and though they serve some pretty generic baguettes, they do have good pita, probably Mediterranean brand.

                Not stunning, but promising, and markedly better than Mykonos or my last meal at Greek Islands in FTL, for instance.

              2. If you are willing to drive to SE Boca, Baja cafe is great, inexpensive Mexican....

                1 Reply
                1. Great new Spanish Latin American Restaurant in Delray called Alegria (maybe Cafe Alegria). One month old. Owner/Chef was formerly chef at Cabana in NYC. We discovered it bt accident & we had dinner there last night. Great paella, empanadas, hanger steak et al. For dessert we ravished flan, bread pudding and homemade Columbian coffee ice cream. Check was $117 for three real eaters.

                  1. Try Paris Bistro on Jog north of Atlantic. best escargot I've ever had!

                    1. this year the food was deplorable in boynton/delray area.

                      - Kee Grill Boca on Military Trail)- glorified outback for overpriced fish. Can you say 1 meat and 2 sides for $26.
                      - Sonoma Bar and Grill (Delray on Atlantic Ave)- Sucko-city. Sent back two entrees because the chef was incompetent and oversooked the first, served the second raw and when I switch he served some crappo skirt steak sauteed and raw.
                      - La Cigale (Delray on 5th south of Atlantic) - Escargot and mushroom appetizer was tasteless, i think the chef forgot to season. Branzino was OK. Hard to say this was the best we had.

                      Last year we went to City Oyster and 32 East. Both of these were good, but we did not get there this year.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: jfood

                        Yup, all of those resturants you went to are awful. Kee Grill is not worth going to. Sonoma has a MUCH better seafood restaurant right next door called J&J seafood - great atmosphere, awesome food, small hole in the wall. Who recommended such terrible places to you?

                      2. So far, the best restaurant I've been to in Delray is 32 East. Nothing else in town compares. The menu reflects the best produce and meat that the chefs were able to get at that time, which means that you'll be trying something new each time you go.
                        The Mexican food in town is a joke. I went to 4 different places and had to ask for tortillas with my entree at each one, I'm from the West Coast and have NEVER asked for this before.
                        There are tons of Thai places in Delray but nothing sticks out. The only consistent thing about Thai food here is that no matter how spicy you ask for your food to be prepared, its never spicy. I guess the old folks can't handle it.
                        My wife works with a greek couple, and there favorite is a place in Fort Lauderdale on A1A and Oakland Park. I can't remember the name, but it was worth the 35 minute wait to eat(you can't reserve).
                        I'm a big fan of microbrews, and considering all the Bostonians around, I'm disturbed at the lack of them. Brewzzi is a microbrew in Boca, but the beer is only average (though an average microbrew beats Budwater any day). The food is the reason we go, because they give you huge huge portions and you never leave hungry. However, you always feel guilty afterwards, but who cares if visited in moderation.
                        I'm going to check out City Oyster when I get a chance, but I'm trying the Oysters...

                        7 Replies
                        1. re: bustedmagnet

                          Try Shore on A1A, I had a very good meal there, I was very impressed with the food and atmosphere, my favorite place in Deray, other then Doc's.

                          1. re: stuartlafonda

                            Shore really shines for breakfast in my opinion.. they have a neat-o Bloody Mary bar and nice atmosphere. Creme Brulee grapefruit or cream cheese stuffed french toast.. delicious, perfectly seasoned home fries that need no ketchup, wonderfully thick applewood smoked bacon...

                            1. re: panthur

                              I agree, I posted on another thread about breakfast in the area that the crabcakes and poached egg dish was awesome, one of the best things I ate on a recent visit.

                          2. re: bustedmagnet

                            An english pub on Atlantic Ave just west of the intercoastal called the Blue Anchor has a very large selection of brews. Check it out.

                            1. re: vmurgolo

                              decent pub food as well, but not great non-pub food

                              1. re: vmurgolo

                                I love this place.. balmoral steaks, bangers and mash, shepherd's pie are all wonderful. Fish and chips are ok but not the best. Great selection of beers including hand drawn.

                              2. re: bustedmagnet

                                I visited Brewzzi often when my father was alive. To say the portions are huge huge is almost an understatement. You could eat for a week -- and pretty well, in fact -- on a serving of their orichiette, broccoli rabe, and sausage. It's a carb lover's dream come true!

                                1. Try Tramonte for Italian food. It is very good. Hnads down, 32 East is the best in Delray.

                                  1. 32 East is good but super-trendy and sometimes I feel a bit overrated and loud. I second Tramonte but frankly, I feel as those that all the places on Atlantic tend to be a bit on the trendy side.

                                    1. I live in Boca Raton and have been to Tramonte many times and think it is excellent. The best steakhouse in the area is Abe & Louie's in Boca Raton.

                                      1. I disagree that Delray dining isn't good, you just have to avoid the places that sucker in the tourists. Yes, there aren't many Mexican or Greek places but we are a small town compared to Boca! What we lack in size we make up for in slightly more pleasant locals and less traffic.

                                        Our Mexican options are:
                                        Las Hadas (good fajitas but total dive inside)
                                        La Bamba (great lunch specials, decent food - they serve some cuban stuff too)
                                        Roberto's (tiny cheap taco shop at Federal and Linton, great for take out)

                                        My latest secret place has been Cafe Siam at Federal and S 5th. Great Thai food, not the best decor and reasonable prices. Lunch specials are cheap and come with salad or soup and dessert. Ziree on Atlantic used to be my favorite for wonderful decor and flowers, delicious sushi and Thai, but they changed sushi chefs and the sushi went downhill.

                                        Check out my reviews at demandy.com. I live in Delray, I've tried most of the local places. Also you can get some discounts at southfloridadines.com if you plan ahead.

                                        1. Shore is good for breakfast but not great for dinner - the menu is too sandwichy. Luna Rosa nowhere near as good as 2 years ago, the menu is dull and average food for the price.

                                          Dada one of the best, inexpensive and lovely to sit outside at, 32East is interesting but pricey.

                                          Louis Louis has good pizzas and pastas, nice outside to view the buzz of Atlantic, not so nice inside.

                                          Agree Baja in Boca is good and very cheap.

                                            1. re: diablita FL

                                              Yes, Dada is one of our favorites. Every time we go to Delray, we can't stay away from Dada. Our favorites are the black bean dip and the seared ahi tuna. The atmosphere in and out pleases us in just about any mood we're in and they serve a full menu until 1 am which is great, if you're off to a slow start! It's hard to find good food at 10 pm in south florida north of south beach.

                                            2. I like to go to Senor Burrito In Boca at 5 points(Federal Highway and 20th st.). They have great , kicky salsa verde( you have to ask for it for your chips) and large buritos. One downside is that their menu is very limited in choices, The food tastes very fresh and isn't greasy. They have recently opened another one going north on Federal from Delray to Boynton Beach. I can't remember where exactly, but it is on the left, so you have to look for it. I also like Tiajuana Flats Just south of federal highway and Hillsbourough. They feature a hot sauce bar you can sample. food is fresh, good and not greasy. Both places are not too expensive.

                                              1. There is a good Mexican restaurant just south of Atlantic Avenue, on Federal highway going north. Senor Burrito is in a small strip plaza that doesn't look like much, but the food and margaritas are great!

                                                1. Delray has plenty of good options. 32 East is certainly one of the best restaurants in Southeast Florida, and Sol Kitchen (which for some reason is never crowded) and Falcon House both offer good food as well.