I feel like another confessional coming on: Forgive me for its been way too long since my last post. Life just has a habit of sometimes getting in the way of keeping my writings as current as I’d like them to be. But I promise, as always, to deliver you our latest Food Finds (new restaurant openings, menu updates, food & wine festivals, charity galas, product reviews and recipes, and destination travel).
Today’s post is on The Venu (www.TheLocalVenu.com), an upscale and intimate restaurant, bar & entertainment destination that recently opened in Boynton Beach, FL. Open daily from 11am – 3am, offering lunch, brunch (Sundays 11am – 3pm) Happy Hour starting at 4pm and dinner featuring live music throughout the week and every weekend. You can find a complete schedule of all their shows and ticket info on their website and facebook pages. The Venu is outfitted with a 200″ projector screen and a 22′ X 20′ stage and showroom, along with a state-of-the-art sound and light system. Expect to see talent from all over the world playing on this stage, representing every genre from funk and soul to rock, reggae, DJs, comedy, Broadway acts and more.
The Venu has brought on Executive Chef Kelley Randall (previously head chef at Vic & Angelo’s and The Office in Delray Beach) to run the kitchen. He is a highly regarded and well-known master of inspired farm-fresh cuisine who incorporates locally sourced ingredients to create imaginative menus for lunch, brunch dinner and showtime. All pastas and desserts are crafted in-house daily and all dishes are prepared from the scratch kitchen. Chef Kelley’s take on Italian and modern European fare is highlighted by such signature dishes as the Wild Boar Pappardelle, Frutti Di Mare, Coq Au Vin, 1855 Ranch Ribeye, Stuffed Portabella Mushroom, Waygu Beef Carpaccio, Grilled Octopus, PEI Mussels Provencal and much more including daily specials.
I had the great pleasure of trying several of these and other signature dishes at a recent Media event.
The preset menu was divided into sections: Under “Let’s Begin”, we sampled the Wagyu Beef Carpaccio and the Meatballs Al Forno.
Every well thought out component came together to create a harmonious dish. The Wagyu beef just melts in your mouth and the fried caper aioli provides an added layer of umami. By the way, in case you didn’t know what grissini was when you were reading my description up above, do not fret; I didn’t either, so I looked it up and here’s what it is: breadsticks, lol! Thin crispy Italian breadsticks.
It wasn’t but a few months ago that I tried bison for the first time on one of our tours in Sanford where I had the most delicious bison burger at The Smiling Bison. So I was super excited to see this meatball at The Venu contained bison in their mixture. The meatballs were delicious there’s no doubt about that, although I don’t know that I could really detect the bison.
Moving on to the next section, under “Greens” we got to try their Pear & Cream and House Crafted Pasta.
This whimsical salad was filled with my all time favorite cheeses, the burrata. I swear, if you’re anything like me, once you try burrata, it’s hard to go back to regular ol’ mozzarella. It is the king of all mozzarellas in my humble opinion. Anyway, I must say this dish was creatively assembled; never before had I seen poached pear served with burrata. Each of the items on the dish was treated with finesse while the balsamic drizzle brought them all together harmoniously.
My favorite dish of the evening was this wild boar pappardelle. From the moment it was placed in front of me, the waft of orange zest made it’s way up the olfactory, tingling and tantalizing my tastebuds beckoning me to consume my first bite. O-M-G! The boar was so tender and flavorful and the pappardelle was cooked to perfection. The saltiness from the feta was a unique and welcome addition as well. You must try this dish.
Innovative and tasty cocktails were served thoughout the night…
Under the “Paramount” section, we were given the Seared Sea Scallops and Chicken Francaise to try.
Did you know that summer carrots are sweeter than fall carrots? Neither did I. I learned this fun little fact from Chef Kelley when he introduced the dish. The sweet carrot puree was a terrific choice to accompany the perfectly cooked scallops.
This dish was rich and contained all of the key components of a classic Chicken Francaise plus some original nuances such as the fried artichoke hearts, adding yet another flavorful dimension.
“To Finish” we had the tiramisu and a House Crafted Cookie Plate
The tiramisu served at The Venu was one of the most delicious tiramisu’s that I have ever had. Great job guys!
What a night, I tell ya. I hope I have given you some ideas on what you would like to try when you visit. When you do go, be sure to tell Chef Kelley that your friend Denise from Savor Our City sent ya.
The Venu is located at 8794 West Boynton Beach Blvd. Boynton Beach, FL 33472 561.200.0222
Head Chef and co-owner Monique Buchbinder (the name MoBu is derived from the first two letters of her first and last name), earned her degree from the French Culinary Institute in Manhattan prior to working as a chef at Per Se (the sixth highlest Michelin rated restaurant) and at the famed Nobu in Miami (yes, you might say there might have been a tad bit of influence behind her restaurant’s chosen name) before deciding to become a private chef taking on catering jobs and hosting dinner parties in Manhattan, Naples and Miami. She began cooking for a gentleman named Bruce who moved to South Florida from New York. When Chef Monique expressed her interest in opening her own restaurant one day to Bruce, he realized her talent in the kitchen was too good to keep all to himself and decided to help back her. Bruce’s daughter, Brooke, MoBu’s General Manager and Marketing Director, handles the front of house and community events, while Chef Monique makes magic in the kitchen. In addition to making dishes that are filled with flavor, Chef Monique makes dishes that are sensitive to healthy diets and food allergies, including nut-free and gluten-conscious (gc) items in addition to vegan, organic, vegetarian diets. Seasonally inspired, beautifully plated, and sourced from some of the world’s most vibrant cultures, Mobu’s dishes leave guests filled with a revitalized love for cuisine and community.
Sourcing foodie favorites from Asian, French, and Caribbean cultures, MoBu Fusion Cafe in Boca Raton is where folks come to enjoy international cuisine in an elegant local atmosphere. Using fresh ingredients as her brushes and plates as her palettes, Chef Monique only works with the best food suppliers so you can expect to always enjoy the most delicious and freshest ingredients. From beautifully presented appetizers and main dishes, to tantalizing desserts, you will be in food heaven.
Relax and unwind in their beautiful patio dining area, where you will be surrounded by nature & water. This is where our group of bloggers gathered for a brunch tasting. Every dish that was brought out had a flare to it and each was exceptional. We started out with an Amuse Bouche of Tuna Poke (gc) artfully plated on a black slate. Next was the Banana Bread French Toast, which was my personal favorite. On top of this most wonderful gluten-conscious French toast (which I still can’t get over had little to no gluten) was bananas foster, Marsala wine, whipped cream and berries. I believe I am drooling as I am writing this now. lol! Our next course was a Crab Egg Benedict which featured lovely lump crab cakes topped with poached cage-free eggs and a delicious hollandaise sauce. The final tasting of the day was the Tuna Poke Bowl which was made with sushi grade tuna loin, on top of quinoa, brown rice, avocado, sesame seeds and cucumbers.
In addition to their wonderfully yummy brunch menu, they have a simple yet well thought out dinner menu as well with wonderful selections from land to sea. MoBu’s first 5 course Chef’s Table dinner is scheduled for this Friday evening, April 20th. For details, click here.
MoBu Fusion Cafe is located at 1159 South Federal Highway in Boca Raton. Delivery is available through Delivery Dudes. Catering is also available.
The city of Lake Worth has a winning card up its sleeve when it comes to competing for your dinner spending dollars- a tapas bar for comfort food and board games named .
Located at 510 Lucerne Avenue, their style has a modern farmhouse flair of which TV house-flipper Joanna Gaines would be proud. 3 of Hearts offers tapas-style shareable plates and an entire wall of board games to enjoy. Specializing in elevated comfort food, they also have specialty cocktails. It’s the perfect choice for an evening out with friends as the menu is full of items which are served in 3’s.
The number three is special to the family-run operation. Simply called the ‘boss’, Robyn explained that three represents her, her sister, and the memory of her little sister. She passed away before the restaurant became a reality, but encouraged Robyn to go after her dream in the first place. “This opened the idea of the three theme, to keep my sister involved.”
At our visit to the restaurant, we started with the Wine Fashioned and White Herb Sangria. The Wine Fashioned was a fruity take on the classic Old Fashioned. The blend of red and port wines was delicious and didn’t compromise the smoky notes characteristic of the classic drink. Popular in the summer, their signature honey sage sangria was refreshing with plenty of supple fruit on the bottom.
As for the food, they have a jam-packed selection. Homemade by Chef John, they even offer the recipe to make our personal favorite, the strawberry basil jam. The Chef is also Robyn’s nephew. When it comes to working with so many of her family members supporting her Robyn said, “it’s great to have so many people you trust to put their heads together to think through an idea or problem.” It works like a family unit because they compliment each other, yet aren’t afraid to disagree. “We talk through things,” she added, “there’s no threat to challenge each other since there’s unconditional love there.”
Another signature trend on the menu is their fun flips from savory to sweet. On the savory side, we loved the oven dried tomato and the drunken mushroom duxelle jams. Served with perfectly crisped crostini, it was a beautifully plated gourmet spread. Don’t feel like sharing? Meat ragu, chicken 3 ways, or a good-old burger and a pickle are also on the menu.
Catch their weekly trivia night on Tuesday’s from 7:30-9:30. We suggest coming in early to grab a prime table outside and ordering their grilled cheese fingers (you’ll thank us later).
Hours: T-F 3pm-10pm, Sat 2pm-11pm, Sun 11am-4pm (brunch)
Karyn Turk, Palm Beach Insider, Eye on South Florida
Hello Foodie Friends,
On Friday the 23rd of February, the heralded kickoff event knowns as the DuPont Registry Live Hanger Party for the 2018 Concours d’Elegance got underway. The Live Hanger Party did not disappoint with continuing to be one of the country’s marquee lifestyle events as it was back in Boca Raton for its thirteenth anniversary edition.
With a cool evening February breeze, the began with a great start at the Boca Raton Airport’s Atlantic Aviation Hanger, guests were scattered amongst the display of several Learjets, vintage and exotic automobiles and some of South Florida’s best food and wine providers. Sponsored by the Rick Case Automotive Group and benefiting the Boys and Girls Club of Broward County, over twenty of South Florida’s finest restaurants, chefs and fine spirits and establishments made appearances this year included Gourmet Phile, Abe & Louie’s, Casa D’Angelo, Louie Bossi’s, La Ferme, Oceans 234, NY Prime, Café Med, Tanzy, Mermaid Vodka and other premier vendors.
Guests were allowed to enjoy an evening under the stars all the while enjoying live entertainment accompanied with an array of great food, fine wines and spirits. If you were unable to attend this year, be sure to make plans to attend in 2019 to savor unlimited samplings from the area’s finest restaurants, enjoy a craft beverage, fine wine and while admiring the array of planes and automobiles.