Just because 3030 Ocean is on hiatus doesn't mean there's no longer a restaurant worth visiting at the Marriott Harbor Beach Resort.
While the acclaimed Fort Lauderdale restaurant undergoes a major renovation over the next few weeks, chef de cuisine Adrienne Grenier will take the reins of the kitchen crew to host a special pop-up restaurant dubbed Tupelo in the Riva restaurant space at the Marriott.
Tupelo launches today for dinner only and will be available until 3030 Ocean reopens November 1. While Riva will continue serving breakfast, lunch, and brunch, come 6 p.m.,
Grenier, who designed both the concept name and menu, says the pop-up takes inspiration from the Tupelo tree, whose very short bloom season produces a rare type of honey. During this exclusive event, guests will have the opportunity to experience Grenier’s signature cooking style, a one-of-a-kind eatery that will offer a small-plates menu designed for guests to share.
"We didn't want to just shut down and stop working, so we knew whatever we did, it needed to be fun," says Grenier. "With this pop-up, I'm able to have more freedom, yes, but I wrote the menu to also be an easy transition from the type of food we serve at 3030. I didn't want to change everything up too much — just keep it simple."
The concept’s dishes emphasize fresh, seasonal, high-quality, and locally sourced ingredients, adds Grenier, and many feature the use of — of course — honey, including warm cheddar biscuits with honey butter.
There's also smoked fish dip with grilled bread; roasted beets served with a parsley-walnut pesto, arugula, and goat cheese; rock shrimp pasta with garlic, tomato, and basil; seared scallops with polenta and charred corn succotash; and roasted chicken with chorizo rice grits and black bean purée. Desserts include fresh berries and cream topped with Tupelo honey.
Grenier says her favorite dish on the Tupelo menu is the Jim's pork chop, meat sourced from nearby Palmetto Creek Farms that's been given a potent hickory rub and is served with smashed potato salad and a whole-grain mustard sauce.
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In 2011, Grenier began working with current 3030 Ocean executive chef Paula DaSilva at 1500 Degrees at the Eden Roc Renaissance in Miami Beach. At the time, the restaurant was named one of the best new restaurants in America by Esquire magazine. In 2012, Grenier competed and won the Food Network’s culinary show Chopped. Since then, the South Florida native has spent much of her career at 3030 Ocean under the tutelage of chefs DaSilva and Dean Max.
"Tupelo is more relaxed and casual than 3030 Ocean," says Grenier. "It's all about the energy and keeping the momentum going."
Tupelo will pop up nightly starting at 6 p.m. in the Riva restaurant space at the Fort Lauderdale Marriott Harbor Beach Resort & Spa, located at 3030 Holiday Drive in Fort Lauderdale. Reservations are suggested. Call 954-525-4000, or visit tupeloharborbeach.com.
Nicole Danna is a food writer covering Broward and Palm Beach counties. To get the latest in food and drink news in South Florida, follow her @SoFloNicole or find her latest food pics on the BPB New Times Food & Drink Instagram.