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32 East best of Delray . . .

themaddiner Feb 28, 2008 12:07 PM

My thoughts on a local favorite . . . 32 East. We should have much better and more interesting restaurants in the area . . . It's a very average yet constant 'award winner'.

overall the best restaurant on the avenue. the dimly lit bar, mix of jazz + modern classics + constantly updated menu sets it apart from the others. i'm not very interested in the menu for the most part as items are often trendy + contrived, looking good in print but not working well as finished dishes. the bar area is a great place to enjoy a glass of wine or cocktail along with a margharita pizza which is always available. appetizers can be rather small (seared tuna), house made pastas can be very good as well as fresh fish although the presentation is often uninspired. the desserts are really hit + miss. often a unique sorbet or ice cream will be your best best. a door man would be welcome on weekends when the college kids filter in. they should be pushed towards sol kitchen (owned by 32 east). senior hostess can be rude + forgetful. be sure to check back often to let her or the other girls know you are there as they may forget about you. tables in the bar area may be reserved. the owner is there often + is very pleasant + accommodating.

• extremely friendly bar staft (don't forget other customers)
• margharita pizza is always available
• upscale, intimate bar area during the week
• very good dishes, when the ingredients mesh

• servers are a bit robotic at times
• menu item combinations often unsuccessful
• routinely small appetizer portions + weak presentation
• bar staff often too focused on individual customers

• college kids mixing in late night on weekends

  1. s
    smartie Feb 14, 2009 07:37 AM

    I was not impressed with 32E this week, Iceberg wedge at $11, soggy lettuce, a few cherry tomatoes and the most watery tasteless blue cheese dressing with no lumps of blue cheese. Big rip off.

    As usual they were unable to make my steak as requested. Waiters did not know who was eating what because our server hadn't made himself a note, nothing worse that runners yelling in a noisy resto, who is having the steak? who is having the mahi? to a table of 12.
    I just don't see the value of this place, expensive, noisy, strange food combinations.

    1. CFByrne Jul 15, 2008 11:00 PM

      Was just out of town for a month... and upon return...

      It appears Sol Kitchen (32 East "sister" restaurant) has shuttered their doors.

      I also heard same has happened to Shore over on A1A and Atlantic although I have not seen that in person.

      18 Replies
      1. re: CFByrne
        CFByrne Jul 16, 2008 03:58 AM

        OK, Sol Kitchen is def closed - sign on door says Coming Soon - "Tryst".

        Shore is also MOST DEF closed. The interior is being totally gutted (and this just a few years after someone spent a TON of money to totally gut the interior when they opened Shore).

        Another possible Delray closing - drove past Roadhouse Grill on Linton and Federal at 5PM Sunday and there were zero cars in the lot.

        1. re: CFByrne
          smartie Jul 16, 2008 05:08 AM

          a few delis have closed locally, New York Diner and Lox Around the Clock up on Jog and Lake Ida. I can't see the Addison West staying around much longer.

          Wow Shore closed? It was bad at first then improved but the interior was definitely expensive.

          1. re: CFByrne
            feelinpeckish Jul 16, 2008 08:20 AM

            Roadhouse Grill looked done in last winter and never appealed to me anyway. If "Shore" is in the location I think (next to Cafe Luna Rosa on A1A) there is no doubt it just could not compete - not that Luna Rosa is the sun moon and stars. Having "wintered" in the Delray area many years, it is the loss of the simpler places that disturb me and 32 East has yet to be tried - price being the main turn off. In fact price vs value is perhaps my cut off perhaps unfairly so as then I miss a few good places having not even tried them in person (rather relying on Chow Hound's good taste testers).

            1. re: feelinpeckish
              Fibber McGee Aug 4, 2008 12:37 PM

              Wow, Shore closed. They seemed crowded when I was in town (though not as crowded as Caffe Luna Rose or Boston's) and the food wasn't bad. The one time I went they sat my party ouside at the furthest table away from the interior, even though there were many empty tables (and a few full ones) closer to the door. Kind of miffed about that.

              1. re: Fibber McGee
                feelinpeckish Oct 16, 2008 08:04 AM

                A question, really! When directed to a table unsatisfactory to you/(your party), do you complain and request one more suitable? I am pretty easy going on seating but my wife speaks up promptly if the table is in an undesirable location and points out where she would rather sit. She is almost always accomadated, though some places may be less willing to please. Just a thought!

                1. re: feelinpeckish
                  Fibber McGee Oct 16, 2008 10:31 AM

                  Very fair question and points. Usually, yes. And I am usually accomodated. I'm normally easy going about seating, myself, but it just seemed odd how we were shuffled to the far corner while the other occupied outside tables, and there were a few when we got there, were located closer together as well as closer to the interior. The view itself was good, as I wanted to be able to see the beach as we dined, but I felt like we were immediately treated as pariahs, and moving us likely wold not have changed that. Everyone there were dressed casually, as we were, and there was nothing outrageous about our appearance, no weird sayings on our clothing, we had taken the effort for hygiene, and we weren't loud or rude. I'm just not sure why when they weren't that busy felt the need to shuffle us off to the end of the world.

            2. re: CFByrne
              CFByrne Sep 24, 2008 04:11 AM

              To follow up, the shuttered Delray "Roadhouse Grill" is becoming a Duffy's Sport Grill... Perhaps giving Bru's some local competition in the "large Sports bar / family restaurant" market.



              1. re: CFByrne
                CFByrne Sep 24, 2008 04:14 AM

                And the old "Shore" is still gutted... does not appear to be a LOT of progress in past 2 months or so. Perhaps they are waiting for permits but this is usually not a good sign.

                Meanwhile, Vic and Angelo's by the RR tracks looks ready to open any day now, filling the Ave's untapped need for an Italian restaurant. :-)

                Tryst (nee Sol Kitchen) still has papered windows "coming soon".

                1. re: CFByrne
                  smartie Sep 24, 2008 04:35 AM

                  CFB it amazes me that Shore has been gutted again, even the roof is off! Which means that whatever is going in there will not be ready for season.

                  I went to the new steak house on Atlantic last Saturday, forgot the name but the one on the south side near the tracks. Food was good but it's very pricey.

                  1. re: smartie
                    CFByrne Sep 24, 2008 08:34 AM

                    Cut 432



                    discussed there and others, search for "432"

                  2. re: CFByrne
                    Alfred G Sep 25, 2008 01:12 PM


                    "filling the Ave's untapped need for an Italian restaurant."

                    What happened to Tramonti and Louie Louie Too? Aren't they Italian? Aren't they "on the Avenue"?

                    119 E Atlantic Ave, Delray Beach, FL 33444

                    Louie Louie Too
                    201 E Atlantic Ave, Delray Beach, FL

                    1. re: Alfred G
                      CFByrne Sep 25, 2008 02:23 PM


                      I was being sarcastic - sorry! Considering... within about 1000 feet...

                      Louie Louie

                      And that's not to mention just blocks away...

                      Luna Rosa
                      Pizza Rustica
                      Veri Amici
                      Dolce Amore

                      and probably a few I've left off!

                      1. re: CFByrne
                        RickL Sep 26, 2008 07:14 AM

                        CFB - I believe that Rocky's is closed.

                        1. re: RickL
                          chefschickie Sep 26, 2008 12:13 PM

                          It was still open Wednesday, we walked by and there were only 2 tables occupied inside...

                          1. re: chefschickie
                            RickL Sep 26, 2008 03:38 PM

                            Thanks, that's good to know.

                    2. re: CFByrne
                      CFByrne Oct 9, 2008 01:14 PM

                      Vic and Angelo's had private soft opening over the weekend and opened to the public on Monday.

                      Just had lunch there. It is gorgeous. It was quiet on a Thursday afternoon but food was very good and service was excellent. The staff has been well--trained.

                      Local foodies may want to investigate.

                      Open kitchen and pizza coal oven, at the very least, fun to watch. I think this "jinked" location may finally have a success. If they keep their prices reasonable I can see this being a big hit.

                      Right across from City Oyster.

                      Will be a nice spot to have a drink at the bar in the evening and look out onto the Ave - not many others like that.

                      Plenty of indoor and outdoor dining. Of course the trains will be loud, but what the heck...

                      1. re: CFByrne
                        smartie Oct 10, 2008 05:56 PM

                        the trains are my favourite - love sitting at Elwoods at night with the music and the trains. We will try Vic and Angelo's, thanks CF for the thumbs up. We would have tried it last Saturday but it wasn't open yet, it was pouring and we ended up at Louis Louis which surprisingly was better than usual.

                    3. re: CFByrne
                      CFByrne Feb 13, 2009 11:37 PM

                      Looks like Tryst is just about ready to open. Website is up, I've seen job postings, etc.


                      "Tryst is a local restaurant with a neighborhood pub feeling. We will offer lunch, dinner, Sunday Jazz-Gospel brunch or a late night bite. The menu is inspired by the rich bar culture of Europe, with an emphasis on seasonal, mostly local, farm fresh ingredients. Tryst prides itself on using only the best in artisanal and organic farmers."

                      Jan Norris wrote about it last summer:

                      Coming soon: Tryst, a collaboration of Delray Beachers Scott Frielich (Dada), Rodney Mayo and Dave Robinson (Delux Nightclub) and Butch Johnson (32 East). It's going into the old Sol Kitchen space on Atlantic Avenue and will feature "great food," (their PR line); wine, classic cocktails and micro brews. No opening date has been set yet...

                  3. c
                    chefsap May 26, 2008 05:13 PM

                    i agree we need some better restaurants in delray, it sucks having to drive to palm beach to cafe boulud for a "real" good meal. it seems all restaurant owners in delray have a super cocky attitude too. jat chefsap

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: chefsap
                      smartie May 26, 2008 05:57 PM

                      the food at Gol and Cabana is great at both restaurants and probably works out a little cheaper.

                    2. d
                      dfried45 May 25, 2008 05:44 AM

                      Went there ONCE. It was, by far, the noisiest restaurant I ever went to. Couldn't even here people at my table seated across from me. Would never go back.

                      1. m
                        Mat Josher Apr 18, 2008 06:46 AM

                        I dined there once and found it to be yet another quasi-upscale disappointment.

                        1. c
                          chocolate Apr 17, 2008 02:16 PM

                          Have reservations this week-end at 32 East for my Aunt's b-day but having some second thoughts after reading your post. Was wondering if anyone else had any comments????

                          Also, since my uncle always picks up the tab when we eat out, I tend to feel guilty if the place I pick isn't that great and overpriced. Is this one of those places???

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: chocolate
                            themaddiner Apr 17, 2008 02:46 PM

                            Please let me know your experience at 32 East. As I've said, it's constantly a top rated restaurant in the area as is Opus 5 which is far worse in my opinion. What restaurants in the area do you like and I'll attempt to point you in the right direction.

                            1. re: themaddiner
                              chocolate Apr 17, 2008 03:47 PM

                              Still deciding whether or not to keep our reservations there..What do you think??? I am aware that it has always been top rated in the past and has always been recommended by the Ritz whenever we have stayed in that area but some of your comments on your experiences make me wonder as well as some others I have read here on Chow. If I weren't going with my Aunt and Uncle, I wouldn't be thinking so much about it. I decided this is the last time I pick the restaurant. Knew I should have joined them on Sunday when they went to Joe's Stone Crabs in MB and been done with it. Oh well.

                              Also, is everything on the menu alacart? Doesn't appear you get anything with the entree. Other restaurant I'm thinking about is Sundys which is just down the street. They were there for lunch recently and really liked it or maybe Cafe Boulud. Any suggestions or advice??? Thanks again themaddiner.

                              1. re: chocolate
                                themaddiner Apr 18, 2008 07:30 AM

                                As far as 'what you get' with entrees at 32 East . . . each comes with assorted sides, vegetables + a starch, standard items. Sundy House has a beautiful setting but I've not dined there in some time. Café Boulud should provide a more refined experience on every level. There is really nothing higher end in Delray/Boca worth recommending. Palm Beach and Miami offer more interesting options.

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