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Ten Best Restaurants in Delray Beach

Ten Best Restaurants in Delray Beach

UPDATE: Check out our most recent list of the ten best new restaurants in Delray Beach.

It wasn't all that long ago that Delray Beach was just like any other South Florida beach town -- minus, of course, Palm Beach proper. Oh, how times have changed.

In 1985, the Delray Beach Community Redevelopment Agency (C.R.A.), began its plans to revitalize the city by cleaning up the slums, preserving historic buildings, and stimulating the local economy.

The CRA joined hands with the City of Delray Beach, the Delray Beach Chamber of Commerce, and the Downtown Development Authority to establish the Downtown Marketing Cooperative to market the area and run special events.

Years later, Delray Beach has become the culinary capital of Broward and Palm Beach counties and many other cities are attempting to emulate its progress. So we figured it was about time to compile a list of the ten best restaurants in Delray Beach.

See Also:

- Top Five Restaurants on Las Olas Boulevard in Fort Lauderdale

- Ten Best Barbecue Spots in South Florida

Ten Best Restaurants in Delray Beach

10. Park Tavern

Broward and Palm Beach are often criticized for the lack of a progressive cocktail scene. Park Tavern sends that notion to the garbage bin. Conceptualized with the inspiration of New York's Gramercy Tavern, the spot offers some of the most impressive cocktails, and even spirits, north of the 305 border. The seasonally changing libations come in classic -- like the Corpse Reviver #2, a combination of Bombay Sapphire, Lillet Blanc, citrus cane syrup, and Absinthe mist or the whiskey sour made with Woodford Reserve, fresh citrus, egg white, and orange bitter swirl -- and new school options, such as the Whiskey 'N' Apples with Berentzen Apple, Tullamore Dew, agave, lemon juice, and cinnamon apple. And the top-notch gastropub fare, like juicy burgers, smoked short rib, and grilled Atlantic salmon is the perfect accompaniment to soak up the innovative booze.

Ten Best Restaurants in Delray Beach

9. Brule Bistro

There once was a day in which French was the only cuisine reserved for fine dining. There was also a day in which you had to throw on a suit to get a good meal in a restaurant. Luckily, times have changed and neither are true any longer. That's why we love Brule Bistro. The Pineapple Grove spot is part French, part American, and the ideal combination. Starters like corn dusted oyster sliders with smoked aioli and housemade brioche or entrees like grilled angus hangar steak with brandy peppercorn sauce and fingerling potato hash combine French elegance with American innovation. It's as awesome as when the French joined the American Revolution -- and we're just a grateful now as we were then.

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Want access to our Best Of picks from your smartphone? Download our free Best Of app for the iPhone or Android phone from the App Store or Google Play. Don't forget to check out the full Best of Broward-Palm Beach® online at bestof.voiceplaces.com.

Ten Best Restaurants in Delray Beach

8. Dada

If Delray Beach was a high school, Dada would be the crazy -- yet, oh, so fashionable -- art student. Run by South Florida restauranteurs Rodney Mayo and Scott Frielich, the converted old house mixes old Florida elements with Subculture group eccentricity. Aside from the infamous mojito selection ranging from basic to watermelon to whatever you can think of, the menu consists of a combination of New American and global eclectic fare. Dishes like the pork belly waffle dog, Shake-N-Bake pork chop, and habanero maple glazed salmon follow the delectable (and slightly peculiar) premise.

Ten Best Restaurants in Delray Beach

7. Cut 432

Steakhouses are known for being stodgy, stuffy, and full of cigar smoke -- okay, not anymore -- but this place is the opposite. Owned by Brandon Belluscio and Brian Albe, Cut 432 is the sleek alternative to the staid steakhouses of yesteryear. Like most new steakhouses and trendy farm-to-table spots, the menu prominently displays the farmers who provide their products. Peruvian ceviche, hamachi sashimi, and tuna tartare bring the traditional raw bar options up the the 21 century. The spot is a fresh and chic take on the classic meat-centric restaurant.

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Want access to our Best Of picks from your smartphone? Download our free Best Of app for the iPhone or Android phone from the App Store or Google Play. Don't forget to check out the full Best of Broward-Palm Beach® online at bestof.voiceplaces.com.

Ten Best Restaurants in Delray Beach

6. The Office

Generally, the office is the place you want to run from at the end of the day -- not this one. You'll probably want to make your way expediently toward it for after work beers. The spot is well-known for its craft beer selection and cocktails. After work drinks aside, the Delray Beach gastropub is all about new takes on traditional comfort food with soothing dishes like mac and cheese, PEI mussels and fries, and notorious burgers. You're not going to find happiness like that in your day job.

Ten Best Restaurants in Delray Beach

5. Tryst

A tryst is an illicit meeting between lovers. If you love beer, small plates, and bistro classics, this should be love at first sight. The kitchen churns out inspiring pub grub like roasted bone marrow, ricotta flatbread, and freebird chicken chops to pair with the massive selection of wine, cocktails, and, of course, craft beer. While there are some time honored favorites -- the fish tacos being one -- the place is known for its eternally changing menu featuring many local products. You might have other suitors, but it's hard to keep from going back to Tryst.

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Want access to our Best Of picks from your smartphone? Download our free Best Of app for the iPhone or Android phone from the App Store or Google Play. Don't forget to check out the full Best of Broward-Palm Beach® online at bestof.voiceplaces.com.

Ten Best Restaurants in Delray Beach

4. 32 East

If boredom is a problem for you, we suggest 32 East. The massive space is host to a constantly changing menu -- we're talking everyday -- with some of the highest quality, sustainable ingredients that can be found. One day you might walk in to find oak roasted prosciutto wrapped Indian river peaches with upland cress, marcona almonds, cambazola, and gastrique; another day it'll be pan-roasted Mississippi quail stuffed with chorizo, corn, and manchego cheese on mashed potatoes with sherry wine pan sauce. Either way, you're going to be pleased. To top it all off, the pastry chef prepared desserts are like the icing on the cake -- cheesy, but correct.

Ten Best Restaurants in Delray Beach

3. Sundy House

One of the most elegant -- and oldest -- restaurants in South Florida, the Sundy House is set in a restored turn-of-the-century mansion previously owned by the Mayor of Delray. The kitchen is now run by locally loved Top Chef Texas finalist, Lindsay Autry. The daily changing menu features interesting yet accessible dishes like sweetbreads,

braised veal cheek with toasted garlic and a swank heirloom bean vinaigrette and celery caesar of celery root, petite celery greens, brioche croutons, and traditional caesar dressing. Dessert is just as exciting: renowned pastry chef Sarah Sipe will finish you off with whimsical options like orange dreamsicle made with chocolate orange mousse, orange ice cream, and candied almonds and cookies and cream spiced chocolate pot de crème, chocolate salted cookie, dulce ice cream. The experience is like adult romance mixed with childhood fantasy. If only it came along with an imaginary check at the end.

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Want access to our Best Of picks from your smartphone? Download our free Best Of app for the iPhone or Android phone from the App Store or Google Play. Don't forget to check out the full Best of Broward-Palm Beach® online at bestof.voiceplaces.com.

Ten Best Restaurants in Delray Beach

2. Max's Harvest

High-end and earthy are two words that sound like they should be complete opposites. Eating ethically and dining out aren't any closer together. Somehow Max's Harvest manages to turn all of those conventional notions straight on their head. The spot focuses on sourcing local and sustainable ingredients and letting them speak for themselves with dishes like the heritage meatballs covered in San Marzano gravy, basil ricotta, and pecorino and local ricotta gnocchi pan roasted with mushroom ragout, pearl onions, sweet peas, thyme, and truffle tremor cheese. You might be concerned with your waistline, but conscientiously, you won't have to worry.

Ten Best Restaurants in Delray Beach

1. The Grove

The 2013 winner of our "Best New Restaurant -- Palm Beach County," Pineapple Grove's new kid on the block has come in to shake things up. Chef/partner Michael Haycook and partner Paul Strike teamed up with Grant Achatz alumnus Meghan O'Neal to take South Florida by surprise. With the entire kitchen run by Haycook, O'Neal, and just a dishwasher, the spot completely renovates its entire menu every two weeks. Dishes range from modern American items like Florida Pompano with heirloom carrots, beets, and parsley to slightly molecular, such as the hot chocolate/ cold chocolate, hot spiced chocolate with homemade marshmallows and house-made chocolate ice cream. The food is simple yet cutting edge all at the same time. Sometimes you're looking for something new and different: the Grove is it.

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Want access to our Best Of picks from your smartphone? Download our free Best Of app for the iPhone or Android phone from the App Store or Google Play. Don't forget to check out the full Best of Broward-Palm Beach® online at bestof.voiceplaces.com.

Follow Sara Ventiera on Twitter, @saraventiera.




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