Southern Hospitality: New Year, New Palm Beach Dining Options for 2023

Dining by the pool at the Ambassador Hotel and Residences in Palm Beach
Dining by the pool at the Ambassador Hotel and Residences
Courtesy The Ambassador Hotel and Residences

With the new year comes lots of fresh and delicious dining options at Palm Beach County restaurants, hotels and more in 2023.

The Ambassador Palm Beach Hotel & Residences (theambassadorpb.com) on South Ocean Drive in Palm Beach has been taken over by OKO Development out of Miami, which also purchased the Edgewater condos across the street.

In a brilliant first move, its waterside restaurant, Ambassador Grill, has hired Gerard Coughlin, longtime chef at The Chesterfield, which recently shuttered. His new menu goes into effect this month.

Isla & Co. (isla-co.com), an outpost of the New York Australian influenced global restaurant, and long awaited first South Florida project from New York’s Parched Hospitality, is set to premiere this month.

Look for such offerings as spicy Thai green curry with seasonal vegetables, roast half chicken with spiced herb yogurt; and braised lamb shoulder with smashed fingerlings. Matt Foley, who served as sous chef at New York’s Michelin starred Marea, will open at 1401 Clare Street in West Palm Beach this month, and in South Beach later this season.

Food Network’s Demetrio Zavala has joined Gary Rack restaurant group as culinary director, overseeing the Boca Raton and Delray Beach locations of Farmhouse Kitchen (farmhousekitchenboca.com) and the Delray RACKS Fish House + Oyster Bar (racksdelray.com).

They are focusing on working with local farms and regional fishermen, and are planning more locations of Farmhouse Kitchen. Among the dishes Zavala has added are pan roasted trout with Brussels sprouts and squash puree; mushroom risotto with smoked gouda and fine herbs; and spiced pear caprese with sage goat cheese, walnut picada and chicory lettuce.

El Camino West Palm Beach
El Camino West Palm BeachCourtesy El Camino

The Square in West Palm is buzzing with new spots now that New York financial institutions have moved to the area. Among the latest is El Camino (elcaminowestpalmbeach.com), which offers scratch made Mexican fare — even the hot sauce is homemade. Janet Jackson is a fan of the chicken quesadillas and strawberry lemonade, and another location is due in Boca this Spring,

Mitchell Robbins, owner of Farmer’s Table (dinefarmerstable.com) is branching out, collaborating with New York favorite regional Chinese restaurant, Kings County Imperial. The new restaurant, in central Boca Raton, will be called Red Pine — all dumplings are hand rolled, and wok-cooked food is blanched in vegetable broth or chicken stock rather than oil.

Meanwhile, Farmer’s Table has opened a sports bar next to its spectacular location on the Jack Nicklaus designed golf course at the North Palm Beach Country Club. Called Public House, its offerings include citrus chipotle chicken wings and fish ’n’ chips.

The chicken alla parmigiana at Elisabetta’s Ristorante
The chicken alla parmigiana at Elisabetta’s RistoranteCourtesy Elisabetta’s Ristorante

The Sunday night special of chicken alla parmigiana, made with Bell and Evans chicken, for di latte and San Marzano tomatoes at Elisabetta’s Ristorante (elisabettas.com) in West Palm was so popular that the restaurant decided to make it a nightly event. Hand-cut agnolotti filled with roasted butternut squash, served in a pan sauce with porcini mushrooms, guanciale, and black truffle is decadent, but equally crave-worthy.

Corvina (corvinabocaraton.com), the seafood grill in Boca Raton that opened last season specializing in local fish, now has live music Thursday nights and Sunday brunch and has also added a build-your-own bloody mary bar, along with mimosas during brunch.

The PGA National Resort's Lobby Bar
The PGA National Resort’s Lobby BarWill Pryce Photography

PGA (pgaresort.com) is now serving a menu of “shareable” bites in the Lobby Bar to go along with its creative and classic cocktails. Among the dishes are short rib skewer with pickled cabbage and onion rings; prosciutto flatbread; and sofrito chicken empanadas.

Renaissance Boca Raton (tpghotelsandresorts.com) is going through a multimillion-dollar upgrade to all aspects of the property, including the arrival of an outpost of popular Palm Beach steakhouse, Meat Market, and the installation of a new pool area with a waterfall and cabanas.

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