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Grille 401 Las Olas: A First Glance (Photos)

Las Olas Boulevard has seen quite a few changes over the past six months. New restaurants have been popping up all over the block, including the highly anticipated Royal Pig Pub and the much-hyped American Social. 

Monday brought with it Las Olas' newest grand opening--Grille 401 Las Olas.

The restaurant, which sits in the corner of Las Olas City Center, was once the home of Bova Prime--once owned by notorious Ponzi-schemer Scott Rothstein. Much has changed in the spot since the old criminal crowd went off to their condos in Kentucky. A new restaurant--Rare Las Olas--came and went, and now, under new ownership, the interior, menu, and entire concept has undergone a facelift.

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Owned by the Rainmaker Group's Jeffrey Anderson and Kevin Blair, Grille 401 Las Olas is the third spot in their portfolio: other properties include Brimstone Woodfire Grill and Piñon. The menu at Grille 401 has some similar offerings to Rainmaker's other restaurants: like the $30 Chilean Sea Bass with Pesto, a seared fillet of Chilean Sea Bass served with pesto, parmesan potatoes, Thai chili beurre blanc, and fried onions. 

Since its former days of the sleek South Beach-inspired Bova Prime and the swanky monochromatic Rare Las Olas, the space has undergone a contemporary comfortable transformation. Warm blue and slate-covered walls with Florida-inspired art juxtaposed with striped valances and cushy booths give the place the old steakhouse feel with a modern presence.

Although the menu at Grille 401 has some similarities with the other spots in the Rainmaker Group's profile, there are some differences, sushi being one. During lunch and dinner, the restaurant features sushi ranging from california and spicy tuna rolls to the $10 asparagus roll with steamed asparagus, goat cheese, sun-dried tomatoes, and pine nuts.

The menu is seasonally-driven contemporary American cuisine. Lunch includes soups, salads (like the $17 grilled salmon salad), sandwiches, and burgers (starting at $8) to pastas and entrees (up to the $30 sea bass). 

The dinner menu features some burgers and sandwiches, but it primarily focuses on steaks, pastas, and seafood. Prices range from the $17 chicken paillard, sauteed chicken over angel hair pasta with a brown butter sauce, arugula, sun-dried tomato, and roasted red pepper tapenade to the $34 eight ounce filet mignon.
For $6, the restaurant offers a la carte side dishes including shoestring fries, parmesan potatoes, sweet potato mashed, fresh vegetable, sauteed spinach with garlic, peanut and ginger cole slaw chilled kale salad, seasonal specials, and seasonal mac and cheese--right now it's jalapeño.

Desserts run around $8, including, carrot cake, white chocolate bread pudding, key lime pie, Haagen Dazs hot fudge sundae ($7), and a flourless chocolate waffle served with ice cream, raspberry sauce, and chocolate ganache.

To draw in the weekend crowds, there will be live entertainment on Friday nights. There is a full bar--including many speciality drinks--and an extensive beer and wine list. The plan is to extend the list even further in the future. Hopefully, after shedding some old layers, this new concept will stick around for a while. 

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Sara Ventiera

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