Thank you for supporting our journalism. This article is available exclusively for our subscribers, who help fund our work at the Sun Sentinel.
Even before the pandemic problems, this time of year was a little tricky for restaurants.
Snowbirds have left, tourism slows down to a trickle. So you just know that eateries are looking to boost traffic during the it’s-too-hot-to chew summertime here in the subtropics.
The answer is a limited-time offer with discounted prix fixe menus and dining events.
In Palm Beach County there are three such promotions going on to do exactly that — one in busy-buzzy downtown Delray Beach and the other two spanning the 39 cities and towns from Boca Raton and West Palm Beach to Jupiter and Tequesta.
Keep in mind that prices do not include taxes and gratuities.
Downtown Delray Beach Restaurant Month
“2020 was a tough year for the restaurant industry as we all know because of COVID,” says Laura Simon, the executive director of the Delray Beach DDA. “So … extending our August promotion from one week to an entire month allowed people to dine safely at the restaurant, pick up or have their food delivered through our partnership with Delivery Dudes and/or dine out in a pop-up park created by the DDA.”
Amuse bouche: Craft Food Tours will host events such as a “Summer in Spain” pairing dinner and Leblon Caipirinha cocktail class at Cabana El Rey, as well as a dumpling party at Delray Goodies and a food tour of Delray Beach Market.
Reservations: The dine out deals have breakfast offers starting at $6.50, lunch and dinner prix fixe menus ranging from $18.95 to $75, and cocktail specials starting at $9. For a list of participating restaurants and the different events they are doing, go to DowntownDelrayBeach.com/restaurantmonth.
The Palm Beaches Restaurant Week
Entrée: “The culinary scene in Palm Beach County is exceptional,” says Nick Parks, the event’s spokesman. “We believe we have a collection of some of the most outstanding restaurants in the state, evidenced by the awards and accolades that these restaurants have received. Palm Beaches Restaurant Week is an opportunity to showcase them. It’s the best dishes at the best restaurants, from Boca Raton to the south and Jupiter to the north. This will extend the entire coastline of the county. We have a broad range of restaurants from a low price point up to fine dining. And this event is intended to showcase all of it.”
Produced by not-for-profit tourism marketing organization Discover The Palm Beaches, Parks adds that this, the first-ever Palm Beaches Restaurant Week, is in response to the devastation the coronavirus leveled at the restaurant business.
“Coming out the pandemic, we had such an emphasis on hotels and returning tourism back to normal in Palm Beach County,” he explains, recalling when the event was created in March. “We realized as traffic and visitation started to come back … the restaurants were still struggling and suffering. We’re confident that all the efforts … will pay off with increase in covers and demand. And ultimately, revenue for our partners in the county. We hope it will become an annual event every summer.”
Amuse bouche: It was slow going at the start, but now 86 restaurants have signed on and Parks thinks that they might reach 100 by the time the event starts.
He adds that Discover The Palm Beaches teamed up with the Florida Restaurant & Lodging Association — Palm Beach Chapter in order to draw in a wider array of eateries. “FRLA was very influential with some of the restaurants, convincing them that this could help their business, and help the county overall.”
Reservations: The prix fixe menus include brunch and lunch where prices start at $25 and $45 and/or $55 for dinner. For a list of participating restaurants and menus, go to PalmBeachesDining.com.
Entrée: This will be the 13th year for Flavor Palm Beach, which will include just over 40 restaurants throughout Palm Beach County, from Boca Raton to Jupiter.
“People are really hungry for gatherings, enjoying a meal and having company,” says event founder Briana Beaty. “People are really looking forward to being out with other people. I think that’s something that we took for granted and now we can celebrate it even more.”
Amuse bouche: “Web traffic has been way up,” Beaty adds. “I would certainly book in advance. This is not an average year by any means. Don’t expect to just walk in.”
Reservations: Three-course lunches start at $23 and dinners range from $39-$45. For a list of participating restaurants and menus, go to FlavorPB.com.