Critic’s pick in Jupiter: Venture into The Woods Halloween weekend

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North county pick: THE WOODS

This 2-month-old restaurant and bar, owned by golf superstar Tiger Woods, has been a hit at the Harbourside Place dining and shopping complex in Jupiter. And for good reason: The food is delicious, the service superb.

It’s a steakhouse with the approachability of a sports bar, and the dish that best bridges the two concepts is the rib-eye sandwich. (That melted goodness atop the tender steak is Drunken Goat cheese.)

Halloween revelers, if you hit Harbourside Place Friday night, you may want to pack a picnic blanket or chair – there’s a free viewing of “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” at 6:30 p.m. at the waterfront amphitheater, which sits across from The Woods.

If you visit the complex on Halloween night, you may want to see the canine costume contest (6 p.m.) before dinner. That event is hosted by the pooch shop Pucci & Catana.

The Woods: 129 Soundings Ave., at Harbourside Place, Jupiter; 561-320-9627; WoodsJupiter.com

TWITTER: @LizBalmaseda

 

Should restaurant tipping be abolished?

 

There’s power in the tip, diners say. (Bita Honarvar/ Cox Newspapers)
There’s power in the tip, diners say. (Bita Honarvar/ Cox Newspapers)

Hey, big spender, can you imagine the day when your fat tips are no longer welcome at your favorite restaurant?

That day is near for customers of famed restaurateur Danny Meyer’s 13 New York eateries. Meyer, who is also founder of the popular Shake Shack chain, triggered a tidal wave of commentary when he announced recently that tipping would be eliminated at his Union Square Hospitality Group restaurants.

But would it work locally?

READ THE FULL STORY AT MYPALMBEACHPOST.COM

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Critic’s pick: nice-price wines at Lake Park’s Pelican Café

A selection of wines inside The Pelican Cafe in Lake Park on May 16, 2014. (Richard Graulich / The Palm Beach Post)
The Pelican Cafe, Lake Park. (Richard Graulich/ The Palm Beach Post)

North county pick: PELICAN CAFÉ

The owners of Lake Park’s charming Pelican Café have returned from vacation in a generous mode. After a short break, they reopened the eatery last week with a terrific “fall back” deal:

All wines by the glass or bottle are half-price through the end of October. The café’s wine selection offers spot-on pairings for the Pelican’s Italian-centric menu.

Bonus: Dine between 5 and 6 p.m. and get 20 percent off your entire check. Reservations are strongly suggested for dinner. Closed Mondays. See full hours on the café’s website.

Pelican Café: 612 US Highway 1, Lake Park; 561-842-7272; ThePelicanCafe.com

TWITTER: @LizBalmaseda

 

Critic’s pick: Jupiter roadside shack where hot dogs are king

Foot-long with onions and mustard at Dune Dog. (Richard Graulich/ Palm Beach Post)
Foot-long with onions and mustard at Dune Dog. (Richard Graulich/ Palm Beach Post)

North county pick: DUNE DOG CAFÉ

In our Old Florida-loving hearts, we pray there will always be places like this: a rustic, open-sided structure that serves some delicious hot dogs.

Not all of Dune Dog’s hot dogs are franks, mind you. The Sea Dogs, for instance, are fish fillets fried crispy and tucked into toasted New England-style rolls.

Of course, if you’ve come to this 21-year-old establishment for a meaty dog, belly up to the counter and go for a Chicago Dog, flanked by long slices of pickle, then topped with tomatoes, raw onions and a sprinkling of celery salt.

Foot-long with onions and mustard at Dune Dog. (Richard Graulich/ Palm Beach Post)
Foot-long with onions and mustard at Dune Dog. (Richard Graulich/ Palm Beach Post)

Grab a spot where you can find it and settle into let the shack’s cross-ventilation chase away the humidity as you focus on the finer things in life, like Dune Dog’s five-napkin Junkyard Dog (chili, cheese, diced onions, sauce).

Dune Dog Café: 775 Alternate A1A, Jupiter, 561-744-6667; DuneDog.com

TWITTER: @LizBalmaseda

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Three places for a sinful bite on World Vegetarian Day

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If your idea of celebrating World Vegetarian Day is to dine on salad, you may be missing the day’s more sinful temptations. Like cashew cream.

Chef Chris Slawson, who owns the plant-based Christopher’s Kitchen in Palm Beach Gardens, is a master of this delicacy. It’s the substance that adds dreamy richness to his eatery’s ice “cream.” And wait till you try the macadamia “ricotta” that melts atop Christopher’s Kitchen’s pizzas. Like the ice cream, it’s among the stylish cafe’s more naughty options — and there are many of those.

Here’s the reality check: You don’t have to brave a mound of cold iceberg to stand in solidarity today (Thursday) with World Vegetarian Day. You can indulge. Here is a trio of good spots to do so in Palm Beach County:

Christopher's Kitchen: chocolate tart with vanilla ice "cream" made with cashew-coconut cream. (Palm Beach Post file)
Christopher’s Kitchen: chocolate tart with vanilla ice “cream” made with cashew cream. (Post file)

Christopher’s Kitchen

For all the above reasons and more.

4783 PGA Blvd., Palm Beach Gardens; 561-318-6191

Darbster's Palm Cake is a crispy favorite. (Post file)
Darbster’s Palm Cake is a crispy favorite. (Post file)

Darbster

Few places are more pooch-friendly than this waterside eatery. In fact, the restaurant’s proceeds benefit the Darbster Foundation, which helps local animal rescue and welfare efforts.

Decadent pick: the crispy hearts of palm cakes with caper remoulade and baby greens.

8020 S. Dixie Hway, West Palm Beach; 561-586-2622 

Getting crunchy at The Bee, West Palm. (LibbyVision.com)
Getting crunchy at The Bee, West Palm. (LibbyVision.com)

The Bee

This sunny spot is a good place for a fragrant cup of tea or vegan snack.

Decadent pick: the avocado toast with watermelon radish, lemon, tomato, cayenne, sea salt and sesame seeds.

123 Datura St., West Palm Beach; 561-651-9796

TWITTER: @LizBalmaseda

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Critic’s choice: Tequesta’s temple of refined dishes

Krave, Tequesta. (Bill Ingram/ Palm Beach Post Staff)
Krave, Tequesta. (Bill Ingram/ Palm Beach Post Staff)

North county pick: KRAVE

Within a cozy, comfortable space, Chef Michael Rolchigo creates some of the best fine-dining dishes in north county. He pays close attention to detail, from appetizers to desserts, each course exquisite. It’s no wonder the former Jupiter Island Grill chef has brought in quite a following to this Tequesta space. His food is inspired and creative, but it’s also accessible to the mainstream palate.

041814 acc krave 02The eatery reopens with a new menu Thursday after a month of vacation. Among the highlights are a pistachio-crusted Colorado rack of lamb with goat cheese mashed potatoes, a king salmon with a kale-cashew crust and red quinoa and a bouillabaisse that’s swimming with fresh scallops, shrimp and lobster and served with an optional Pernod mister at the table.

Hours: Krave will be open Tuesdays through Saturdays (5 to 10 p.m.) until full season hours (Mondays through Saturdays) start in November. Reservations are a must.

Krave: 626 U.S. 1, Tequesta; 561-575-9222; KraveRestaurant.com

TWITTER: @LizBalmaseda

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