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Check out new restaurants coming soon to South Florida

Jul 28, 2023

Belladukes / Courtesy

Lisa Mullen (left) and Lisa Klepper have been friends since childhood, when they would spend time enjoying the beach in Boca Raton, just east of where their new gourmet market Belladukes is opening.

Cookie Plug / Courtesy

Cookie Plug, a fast-growing cookie franchise where treats are brownie-thick and inspired by '90s hip-hop, is expected to open this spring in downtown West Palm Beach.

Plans for Raising Cane's include adding four South Florida locations by this summer, starting with Boynton Beach in April.

John McCall/South Florida Sun Sentinel

Burgundy mushrooms and lobster dip served at Black Rock Bar & Grill in Fort Lauderdale in 2019.

Chip City / Courtesy

Five locations of New York-based Chip City are heading to South Florida by fall 2023, with new storefronts planned in Delray Beach, Pompano Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Miami and Miami Beach.

When it comes to food, South Florida is a great place to be. So many new places open up every day. Here's what's coming soon to a city near you.

Cookie Plug, West Palm Beach

At this rapidly growing California franchise of sweet shops, the soft and brownie-thick cookies are dubbed "phatties," graffiti coats the walls, and ’90s West Coast hip-hop flows over loudspeakers. The bakery founded by Erik Martinez is bringing six locations to South Florida, the first of which is expected to debut this spring near Clematis Street and South Olive Avenue, a block west of the downtown waterfront. The menu includes the self-explanatory Snooperdoodle, Mac Daddy (white chocolate macadamia nut), Crunch Nugget (chocolate peanut butter), Bam Bam (fruity cereal) and the Pink Elephant (strawberry cheesecake). The five other locations are heading to Miami-Dade County, joining 300 total Cookie Plugs planned by the end of 2026. 105 S. Olive Ave., West Palm Beach;

Opal & Ore, Delray Beach

Chef-restaurateur Giovanni Geraca plans to debut this Mediterranean-Italian kitchen on Delray Beach's ever-bustling Atlantic Avenue, with a grand opening set for April 3. The menu, which draws on French and coastal Italian techniques, includes starters such as Sicilian schiacciata, a flatbread topped with buffalo mozzarella, scallion butter and Greek olives, arancini balls, black truffle bruschetta and charcuterie plates. Entrees include pan-seared swordfish paired with caramelized onions, capers and a white wine-infused lemon-butter sauce. There is also fresh lobster with creamy tarragon sauce and beurre blanc (a French butter sauce) on a bed of fettuccine. For nonseafood eaters, the menu features pork and sage butter rigatoni and slow-cooked Bell & Evans chicken with mushrooms and cream sherry sauce. 506 E. Atlantic Ave., Delray Beach; 561-265-5699,

Talkin’ Tacos, Coral Springs and beyond

They may have started out with a humble food truck in 2020, but the owners of Talkin’ Tacos, Mohammad Farraj and Omar Al-Massalkhi, have some ambitious plans. Their fast-casual Mexican restaurant brand is opening a fourth eatery, at The Walk of Coral Springs, this month — in addition to locations in Miramar and Miami-Dade County's Brickell and Wynwood neighborhoods. On Friday, March 24, from 6 p.m. to 2 a.m., the first 100 guests at the new Coral Springs eatery will get a free order of Talkin’ Tacos’ signature Birria Tacos. Menu favorites include Birria Ramen, Southwest Chicken Tacos, Birria Pizza, Street Corn in a Cup, Churros, Tajin and Chamoy Gummies, as well as house-made lemonades, horchatas and mangonadas. Two more Talkin’ Tacos are expected to open later this year in SoFlo, and franchise restaurants are slated for Orlando, Tampa, Jacksonville and New York. 2866 N. University Drive, Coral Springs;

Belladukes, Boca Raton

Belladukes will have a grand opening with light bites and drinks on Tuesday, March 21, starting at 5:30 p.m. Owners Lisa Mullen and Lisa Klepper say the gourmet market and coffee bar will have a weekly rotating menu, bespoke grab-and-go meals, charcuterie specials and sweet treats, as well as craft beer and fine wines by the glass or bottle. There are three generations of friendships behind Bellaukes. In addition to being childhood friends, both women's parents were friends and now their children are pals too. By the way, the name comes from each family's dog, Duke for the Mullens and Bella for the Kleppers. Free parking is available in the Tower 155 Garage and metered parking on the street. 155 E. Boca Raton Road, Boca Raton; 561-990-1516;

Naked Farmer, Sunrise

This casual American restaurant whose healthy menu changes with the seasons is scheduled to open in April on West Sunrise Boulevard. A farm-to-fork born in Tampa, Naked Farmer created its own direct supply chain with Florida farms, where it sources proteins and vegetables. The restaurant specializes in "build-your-own-harvest-bowls" filled with rosemary-roasted chicken, Faroe Island salmon and grass-fed beef, and topped with "your choice of (un)dressing," per its website. Bowls also include sides such as chilled beets and feta, roasted sweet potatoes and carrots with lemon gremolata. The mini-chain operates three other outposts in Coral Gables, Tampa and St. Petersburg. 13945 W. Sunrise Blvd., Sunrise;

DalMoros Fresh Pasta To Go, West Palm Beach and Delray Beach

Picture this: Heaps of scratch-made pasta served not on dinnerware but inside Chinese takeout-style rice containers. That's the fast-casual premise behind this Venice, Italy-spawned pasta franchise, which plans to open its first South Florida location on Clematis Street in downtown West Palm Beach as soon as April under local franchisee David Caruso. The 1,436-square-foot restaurant will offer build-your-own-pasta bowls, starting with a base of four styles — fusilli, rigatoni, fettuccine, bigoli — followed by sauce toppings that range from pesto and cacio e pepe to amatriciana and bolognese. Other recent openings have included St. Petersburg, Tampa and Sarasota, and another outpost is expected to debut later this year at 439 E. Atlantic Ave., in downtown Delray Beach. 400 Clematis St., West Palm Beach;

Chip City, Pompano Beach and beyond

The latest New York-born restaurant to bet its chips on South Florida is this growing cookie monster, which is scheduled to open five new storefronts in Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties by fall 2023. The sweet shack founded by childhood friends Peter Phillips and Teddy Gailas in 2017 has 17 spots in New York and New Jersey, but a $10 million investment by Shake Shack founder Danny Meyer spurred the South Florida move. Their chunky five-and-a-half-ounce cookie menu includes dairy-free chocolate chip made with oat milk and coconut oil, chocolate peanut butter, blueberry cheesecake, and seasonal outliers such as hot honey cornbread and cannoli (stuffed with toasted pistachios, cannoli shells and cream). A Miami Beach outpost is expected to debut in May, followed by spots in Pompano Beach, Delray Beach, Fort Lauderdale and Miami's MIMO District. 2083 N. Powerline Road, Pompano Beach and 302A E. Atlantic Ave., Delray Beach;

Tropical Barbecue, West Palm Beach

It's a banner season to be Rick Mace, who in January notched a James Beard semifinalist nod for his Florida-style barbecue haunt Tropical Smokehouse in West Palm Beach. Now the chef is doubling down on his philosophy that the Sunshine State — as with North Carolina, Tennessee or Texas — touts its own distinctive barbecue heritage. Tropical Barbecue, his spinoff of Tropical Smokehouse, is expected to open inside the former Aioli space in downtown West Palm Beach sometime in April and to zero in on smoked meats, such as brisket burnt ends. The storefront's no-frills setup will use a cafeteria-style line where customers pick sides and meats slow-cooked in a Texas-made smoker. Although much of its menu isn't finalized, it may borrow from the current lineup at Mace's Tropical Smokehouse. 206 S. Olive Ave., West Palm Beach.; no website available yet

Raising Cane's, Boynton Beach and beyond

This fast-expanding national chicken chain from Baton Rouge, La., specializes in one thing: hand-battered tenders in several combo specials, from its three-finger deal to the Caniac Combo (six tenders with crinkle-cut fries, coleslaw and Texas toast). Four South Florida entries are slated to open by summer, the first of which is planned for Boynton Beach (4835 E. Bay Drive) in April, followed by Royal Palm Beach (100 N. State Road 7) in May and Cutler Bay (19705 S. Dixie Highway) in June. In August, a fourth is scheduled to debut in Pompano Beach (2501 N. Federal Highway) on the former site of steakhouse icon Bobby Rubino's. Other Florida outposts are coming in 2023 to Largo, Gainesville, Tallahassee and Port St. Lucie. Multiple locations;

Krispy Chicken, Weston

This new Korean fried-chicken restaurant, registered to Young Hee Kho and Seo Young Han, doesn't have a menu or website available yet but is expected to debut this spring or summer inside the Weston Town Center. The storefront, located in the open-air plaza where Bonaventure Boulevard meets Three Villages Road, will showcase a variety of huraideu-chikin (fried chicken wings without seasoning) and yangnyeom-chikin (chicken with a sweet-and-spicy sauce glaze). 1660 Market St., Weston;

Voodoo Bayou, Fort Lauderdale

Radiating French Quarter cool with a wrought-iron balcony to match, this pandemic-delayed Southern Cajun cafe is expected to finally open on the Las Olas Boulevard drag this spring, replacing the former Café de Paris. Voodoo Bayou is owner Curtis Peery's (Calaveras Cantina in Boca Raton, Jupiter) vision of New Orleans cuisine, with entrées spanning Crescent City staples (gumbo, jambalaya, shrimp and crawfish étouffée, po’ boys) as well as inventive dishes (such as an 18-ounce, bone-in Cajun ribeye with bourbon jus, wood-fired redfish — and even gator tail). This would be Voodoo's second location after its flagship opened in Palm Beach Gardens in 2020. 715 E. Las Olas Blvd., Fort Lauderdale;

CRU Lounge, West Palm Beach

This clubby hookah bar and small-plates franchise expects to shuffle this spring into West Palm Beach's hip, mural-splashed Northwood Village district. CRU, to be operated by local franchisee Stephon Williams, touts a hookah menu as sweet as its sugary cocktails, which include Liquid Hemp (coconut rum, pineapple juice) and Nyak Hulk (fruit juice, vodka, cognac, sour patch candy straws). The lounge also serves Philly cheesesteaks, lollipop lamb chops, garlic shrimp skewers and lobster mac ‘n’ cheese. CRU's West Palm Beach location will join outposts in Atlanta, Los Angeles, Austin and New Orleans, with a Coral Gables location expected first in April. 538 Northwood Road, West Palm Beach;

Grain & Berry, Fort Lauderdale

This Tampa-based, build-your-own-bowl chain plans to plant its newest outpost this spring in Flagler Village, across the street from Holiday Park. Grain's first South Florida location (and 13th in the state) comes from co-franchisee Jeremy Dover, one half of Fort Lauderdale's Demesmin & Dover law firm. The chain focuses on superfoods and serves bowls with different bases including acai, spirulina, pitaya or yogurt. The menu also features flatbreads and quesadillas with cauliflower or broccoli crusts, avocado toast, smoothies and juices. A Pembroke Pines location is expected to follow in early 2023. 701 N. Federal Highway, Fort Lauderdale;

Black Rock Bar & Grill, Coral Springs

A new location of this Michigan-born, grill-your-own-steaks chain is set to debut in early 2023 in the space formerly occupied by The New York Bagel Factory. As with its Fort Lauderdale location (which opened in April 2019), Black Rock's DIY gimmick is simple: Customers grill and flip their raw Angus beef steaks and seafood to desired doneness over 755-degree volcanic bricks served tableside. The restaurant (which touts a mammoth 14-page menu) also features hamburgers, French dips and Reubens, rib slabs and Maine lobster tail. For dessert, there's a towering brownie "volcano" loaded with vanilla ice cream, whipped cream, chocolate and caramel, and speared with shooting sparklers. 2554 N. University Drive, Coral Springs;

Truluck's, Fort Lauderdale

After three years away, the upscale steak-and-seafood restaurant chain that once anchored Fort Lauderdale's Galleria Mall is returning to the city, expected to open later this spring in the Paramount condominiums storefront once occupied by Moréa. LM Restaurants founder Lou Moshakos, owner of Moréa, told the South Florida Sun Sentinel that he sold the restaurant to Truluck's in October. The beachfront restaurant and al fresco terrace will serve in-season Florida stone crabs, lobster bisque and wedge salads, crab cake sandwiches on buttered potato buns, and entrées ranging from trout amandine and miso-glazed seabass to super colossal prawns and broiled center-cut ribeyes. The surf-and-turf eatery, which has Southern Florida outposts in Miami and Naples, last appeared in Fort Lauderdale in May 2020, when it abruptly closed early in the pandemic after a decade. 701 N. Fort Lauderdale Beach Blvd., Fort Lauderdale;

Carmela Gourmet Toast & Coffee Bar, Boca Raton and West Palm Beach

This coffee-and-avocado-toast chain, cofounded in Parkland by owners Rainer Abreu and Rafael Baretta, is in rapid expansion mode, with a rebranded name (changed from Carmela Coffee Co.) and nine new locations planned for 2023. Carmela's next Boca Raton location expects to open within the upscale Park Place plaza in spring. A West Palm Beach outpost is set to follow at the Village Commons plaza. Along with caffeine, they sling empanadas, avocado toast, flatbreads, salads and more. 5560 N. Military Trail, Suite 322, Boca Raton; 701 Village Blvd., Suites 101-102, West Palm Beach;

Amar Bistro, Boca Raton

In just two years, Amar is quickly becoming a bit of a boutique brand with the first eatery (and a nearby separate bakery) in Delray Beach as well as another bakery in Boynton Beach. Now comes word that the Amar Bistro reach will extend into Boca Raton, where Amar's owners — wife-husband team Susanna and Nicolas Kurban — plan to open a second restaurant this summer. "In general, the menu will be 80% similar to our Delray Beach offerings of authentic Lebanese cuisine," Nicolas Kurban said. "But we will be adding a modern twist to several dishes along with Eastern Mediterranean specialties from Turkey, Greece and the other countries in that region. The Boca Raton location will have a bar, so we plan to offer small bar bites and a happy hour menu, something we couldn't do in Delray due to the lack of space." The new 2,250-square-foot location will be able to seat 76 people indoors (plus another eight at the bar) and 20 to 24 outdoors. 9982 Glades Road, Boca Raton;

Disdwet Restaurant, Boynton Beach

This Haitian takeout restaurant registered to owner Wilphanie Alcegaire is expected to open this winter near the intersection of North Congress Avenue, a few blocks south of the Boynton Beach Mall. Disdwet (which translates from Creole to "10 fingers"), serves Haitian-style pasta, fried plantains, pikliz, boulet vyann (Haitian-style meatballs), rice and beans, pate kode (fried Haitian patties) and house-made akra, or crunchy malanga fritters tossed in bold spices. 1403 Boynton Beach Blvd., Unit 12, Boynton Beach; 262-671-6998;

Culver's, Loxahatchee

After its Broward County debut in August 2020, this rapidly growing franchise known for its burgers and Wisconsin cheese curds is looking to add its newest SoFlo location in Loxahatchee this June from local franchisees Kase and Jennifer Bethel. Savory dishes aside, there are frozen custard concrete mixers (blended with candy toppings), toothsome sundaes and waffle cones that ooze with warm butterscotch and hot fudge. The menu also features chicken tenders, cranberry bacon-bleu salads and Reuben melt sandwiches, but Culver's star is undoubtedly the ButterBurger, a smashed beef-blend patty so named for its fresh, lightly buttered kaiser roll. 15339 Southern Blvd., Loxahatchee;

Lefkes Estiatorio, Delray Beach

Billed as having a modern take on traditional Greek cuisine, Lefkes Estiatorio is expected to open in the Delray Beach Market food hall in late 2023. The fine-dining restaurant morphs into what the brand — out of Englewood Cliffs, N.J. — is calling a "nightlife destination featuring top DJs and entertainment." Lefkes Estiatorio and Bounce Sporting Club will become two new anchors at the Delray Beach Market when the food hall reopens after renovations this summer. 33 SE Third Ave., Delray Beach;

Naked Taco, Wellington

This clubby Mexican restaurant from chef Ralph Pagano (once of "Hell's Kitchen" fame) is on its way to debuting its fourth location sometime in mid-2023, within the under-construction Lotis Wellington plaza, north of the corner of State Road 7 and Forest Hills Boulevard. The 3,800-square-foot space will employ 60 people and join Pagano's (Yes Hospitality Group) other Naked Tacos in Miami Beach, Coconut Creek and Boca Raton. The restaurant has a full-liquor menu and serves ceviche, enchiladas, burritos and fajitas, plus upscale tacos loaded with grilled octopus, Philly cheesesteak, Key West shrimp and chipotle-flavored brisket. Two other Naked Tacos are also planned, in Naples and Pinecrest, later in 2023. 1351-1381 S. State Road 7, Wellington;

Bagels & Co., Wilton Manors

Philadelphia-based Glu Hospitality plans to debut the first Florida outpost of its bagel-centric breakfast chain in early 2023, replacing the former Starbucks near Five Points on Northeast 26th Street. The 2,500-square-foot cafe (which includes a patio) will serve hot and ice coffees, lemonade, chai and matcha lattes, breakfast sandwiches as well as lunch sandwiches including turkey club and cheesesteak. There are also 17 bagel flavors and a raft of 29 specialty cream cheese flavors, from bacon cheddar to birthday cake. 1015 NE 26th St., Wilton Manors;

Pizza Cucinova, Wellington

Around this time in 2022, Pizza Cucinova opened three blocks from Fort Lauderdale beach, near where Las Olas Boulevard ends at State Road A1A. Then roughly 10 months later, that location suddenly closed with zero notice on their website or social media. Now we hear from The Mall at Wellington Green that the restaurant is moving operations there. There's no firm opening date yet. Pizza Cucinova offered "craft-your-own" pizzas, pastas and salads in the $8 to $15 range. 10300 Forest Hill Blvd., Wellington;

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