Category Archives: Wellington Table – Signature Dish

Unique Flavors In A Fun Atmosphere At Q’Salsas Latin Bar & Grill

Unique Flavors In A Fun Atmosphere At Q’Salsas Latin Bar & Grill

Q’Salsas Latin Bar & Grill is serving up flavors that burst from unique recipes that dreams are made of.

Chef and owner Christian Ramirez not only follows his heart, but also his vivid dreams, to guide his creative cuisine at this family-owned restaurant.

“The name Q’Salsas came from a dream that I had,” Ramirez explained. “I love salsa music and salsa means ‘to sauce,’ so I wanted to give a name that will grab a smile from people.”

And people have been dining for the past three years at this rustic and inviting locale. Customers are welcomed by oversized booths and tables as they walk in.

“There are booths on both sides,” Ramirez said. “Customers tell me they feel like they’re on a train.”

Q’Salsas offers a casual but upscale feel as brightly colored hammocks are draped from the ceiling, creating a relaxed atmosphere. Music fills the background while the friendly staff serves up Columbian, Mexican and Peruvian fare.

“We just started a new menu. We offer different kinds of soups and salads. The new menu and some of the things I have now, they came from dreams,” Ramirez said. “I remembered the recipes, and I wanted to make it happen and see the dream come true.”

Ramirez’s dream began in Bogota, Colombia, where he was born. At age 8, he realized his love of food, flavor and bringing it all together by watching his grandmother and mother, a chef, cook family recipes.

He now puts his own twist on the family classics, with additional flavors, matching his lively personality.

“I came to the U.S. when I was 13. I wanted to become a chef. I went to culinary school at Lincoln College, got my bachelor’s degree, and from there I started cooking,” he said, noting that he gained experience at several prestigious establishments, including Mar-a-Lago. “I got a lot of knowledge from great chefs throughout Palm Beach County before I decided to open this restaurant.”

For starters, the “Chef’s Famous” lobster bisque is popular, ranging from $9 to $15.

The port wine poached pear salad with mixed greens is a unique blend of flavors. Shrimp, salmon or chicken can be added for an additional cost. Sweet corn cakes are also a staple.

The Trio Fajitas are among the most popular entrees, served with tender skirt steak, chicken and shrimp, tossed with zucchini, mixed bell peppers and bursts of flavor.

For those with a taste for Peruvian cuisine, the Lomo Saltado is a popular dish with marinated strips of sirloin with onions, served over a bed of French fries and a side of rice. Another Peruvian favorite is the ceviche made with white fish, corn, sweet potatoes and Leche de Tigre.

“Everything on the menu, the customers have been asking for. My goal is to make them happy,” Ramirez said.

From burritos to seafood, there’s also a selection of burgers, like the Avocado 2 Ways burger for $15. It’s topped with both fresh avocado and homemade guacamole, along with lettuce, tomatoes and a Mexican cheese blend.

For the kids, the Kung Fu Panda bowl made with beef, broccoli, rice and tomatoes is kicking up big taste for even picky eaters, according to Ramirez.

“People tell me, ‘I’ve never seen my kids eat beef.’ And, now they see the Kung Fu Panda bowl on the menu and want it instead of chicken tenders,” he said.

The 115-seat restaurant also serves breakfast until noon on weekends, from omelets to both Peruvian and Colombian dishes. There’s also an executive lunch offered ranging from $8 to $12. Daily happy hour is available from 4 to 7 p.m. with margaritas, Coronas and chips and salsa, all $3 each.

For a sweet way to wrap up a flavorful meal, try the newest dessert “Kiss of an Angel,” another creation inspired one night with flavors that vary daily, from blackberry to passion fruit, mango and more.

“It was in my dream. I was in the sky flying when I see an angel. He was eating dessert, and he told me how to make it. It was a sweet dream! So, I decided to put it on the menu. When I tell people, they laugh. They’re having a good time,” Ramirez said.

It’s a good time, that can be accompanied by a fresh coffee, espresso or the restaurant’s popular mocha latte to top off the dining experience.

“It’s all from the heart. I don’t compete with anybody but myself, and my goal is to make everyone happy,” said Ramirez, a man with a happy vision who is truly living his dream.

Q’Salsas Latin Bar & Grill is located at 123 S. State Road 7, Suite 201A, in the Publix plaza just south of Southern Blvd. The restaurant is open Tuesday through Thursday from noon to 9 p.m., Friday from noon to 10 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. The restaurant is closed Monday. For more information, call (561) 619-9979 or visit


Taste-Tempting Comfort Food Served With Style At DeVine Bistro

Taste-Tempting Comfort Food Served With Style At DeVine Bistro

For a decade, DeVine Bistro has become more like a family gathering place for many diners who frequent this Wellington gem. Big on feeding people’s appetites for fine food, quaint seating and a welcoming atmosphere, it’s tucked away in a quiet plaza in front of the Mall at Wellington Green.

“When I opened this restaurant, I wanted it to be more ‘comfort food’ — and comfortable,” said Executive Chef Dave Palmateer, owner of DeVine Bistro.

Palmateer describes his cuisine as American Continental, with a familiar feel.

“I have family food,” he said. “That’s really what I was shooting for, because of my family. So, that’s why I’ll have beef stroganoff and meatloaf.”

While the food may be familiar, the presentation and ingredients are top notch. A labor of love is put into each dish.

All the meats are aged for 45 days, marinated in house and cooked once ordered. “I cut all my meats here,” Palmateer said. “So, when I cut fillet mignon, the tip and the tail of the fillet is used for the beef stroganoff.”

Palmateer attributes the bistro’s longevity to his family, including his two teenage sons, along with the restaurant’s longtime staff.

“We can really be consistent. That’s a huge thing for me, and that’s why I’ve been here so long,” he said. “It’s because of my employees. They’re the ones who get to interact with customers more than I can, because I’m actually working the line, and probably the only chef/owner in Wellington who’s on a station all night long. I work as sauté chef six nights a week.”

Family and horses brought Palmateer to Wellington. His daughter Ashley, who was six at the time, came to town daily from Jupiter for therapy sessions, including equine therapy. They fell in love with community and decided open the bistro here. “Ashley has autism,” Palmateer explained. “She is homeschooled by my wife, who also manages and closes the restaurant six nights a week.”

Sara Palmateer holds multiple roles at DeVine Bistro, including pastry chef.

“My wife does everything,” Palmateer said. “She does the staff, and she’s my pastry chef. Meantime, she’ll get me product, and then come home and start making pastries.”

Those popular pastries include her banana cream pie with a chocolate layered graham cracker crust and fresh banana chunks.

Among Palmateer’s creations are the popular pistachio-crusted salmon with sweet potatoes, as well as Guinness-braised short ribs.

“I let it glaze for three hours and put it over a mushroom bacon risotto. Those are my two best sellers,” he explained. “Everything’s fresh. Everything in this restaurant gets made here.”

Palmateer’s love of food, along with his work ethic, grew from his parents’ restaurant in upstate New York. The family of eight siblings spent half their time in New York, and half in Florida. His parents eventually opened a restaurant in North Palm Beach.

Other favorites include the meatloaf. “It’s my mother’s meatball recipe turned into my meatloaf, and I added sautéed mushrooms and caramelized onions,” he said. “Then, I have a shrimp and scallop risotto, which I make with a bacon and spinach risotto, a little pesto, then I sear shrimp and scallops and put it over the top.”

One of DeVine’s most beloved appetizers is the heirloom tomato bruschetta with Danish blue cheese. “I make a homemade focaccia bread, and I toast it with a little olive oil, adding wedges of heirloom tomatoes on it with pine nuts and Danish blue cheese with a lemon champagne over that with fresh basil. It looks beautiful,” Palmateer said.

There are many great options at the bar, too. Happy hour runs daily from 5 to 7 p.m. when everything is two-for-one. Sunday through Thursday, with an entrée, a guest can get a “bottomless” glass of house wine for just $6.

Many community regulars and local celebrities, as well as a number of equestrians, frequent DeVine Bistro.

The main dining room is filled with warm colors of golds and browns, along with inviting booths. A long black granite bar, with the kitchen in view, greets guests at the door. The bistro seats 150, including an outdoor patio. The restaurant serves as many as 300 to 400 people a night and is open for dinner Tuesday through Sunday starting at 5 p.m.

Palmateer gives much credit to his experience at Café Chardonnay in Palm Beach Gardens. He later opened Off the Vine Bistro near PGA Blvd.

Now, working closely with his family has created a stronger bond, as well as taught a strong work ethic. His two sons not only work hard in the restaurant, but outside as well. Michael, 18, is an All-District, All-State football player at Wellington High School, while Zachary, 16, is All-District in the WHS band. And both, their father added, are dedicated brothers to their sister.

Each summer, the Palmateers close their bistro doors for two weeks so they can spend time in New York’s Catskill Mountains, where their family, love of food and tradition began.

DeVine Bistro is located at 2465 S. State Road 7, Suite 300, in front of the Mall at Wellington Green. For reservations, call (561) 204-5432. Visit for more info.



Seafood And More At ‘Fun Florida Fish House’ Hurricane Dockside Grill

Seafood And More At ‘Fun Florida Fish House’ Hurricane Dockside Grill

A new seafood menu and revamped restaurant is stirring things up at Hurricane Dockside Grill in the Marketplace at Wycliffe. Formerly known as Hurricane Grill & Wings, the restaurant has been transformed with a new flair and focus as a “Fun Florida Fish House,” offering a casual, relaxed and rustic atmosphere for people of all ages to dine and play.

“We’re really trying to tune in to what the customer is looking for and differentiate ourselves from other fast casual restaurants out there,” Managing Partner Ron Patak explained. “That’s why we did the Florida fish house concept.”

That new concept includes popular daily dishes like the Tomato Basil Swordfish. It’s grilled, seasoned with lemon pepper and topped with a tomato basil compote and balsamic glaze, served with a choice of sides.

Another top seller is the Crab-Topped Snapper — seasoned and seared Signature Snapper paired with the restaurant’s Signature Crab Cake and crema drizzle — also with a choice of sides.

Aside from the fresh seafood dishes are several big additions, including Fish Fry Friday. “That has been, by far, our number-one seller of all the products we serve,” Patak said.

The meal includes 12 ounces of fresh, hand-breaded cod, served in two 6-ounce pieces over fries with coleslaw and tartar sauce. “At $9.99, it’s a good deal, besides a great product,” Patak said.

The special has been quite a hit. “It has been a great addition. Our customers are super positive, and the response is growing each week, since we started offering it in mid-January,” Area Director Rob Green said.

Also new is the Saturday Clam Fry. “They’re sweet clam strips — hand-breaded, similar to the breading we use for the fish,” Patak said. “Besides the clams, we do a Fisherman’s Platter that has cod, clam strips and hand-breaded shrimp.”

On Sundays, make plans to visit Hurricane Dockside Grill for brunch, served from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. with four types of Eggs Benedict to choose from, including the classic with Canadian bacon and the Caribbean Crab Cake Benedict with warm greens, tomato, avocado slices and Old Bay aioli. For shrimp lovers, there’s sweet chili shrimp with tomato and bacon topped with a sweet and spicy hollandaise. A Garden Benedict includes sautéed mixed greens, red and green peppers, onion tomato and guacamole with hollandaise topped with salsa. Prices range from $9 to $12.

For those who prefer omelets, there are several on the menu, including crab with Monterey Jack and cotija cheeses; western with ham, red and green peppers; and the Californian with avocado and bacon. There’s also a build-your-own omelet option. Prices range from $8 to $11.

For a sweeter palate, four French toast options are available. “We do a stuffed French toast and a Bahamian French toast, which is fried,” Patak explained.

It’s dipped in coconut rum, deep fried and topped with toasted coconut and powdered sugar. The stuffed French toast includes sugar-coated strawberries and cream cheese. The honey pecan French toast is topped with sugar-coated honey and bananas. Or, stick with the traditional topped with a vanilla cream sauce.

Pair your brunch with bottomless mimosa or bloody Mary drinks for $10.

“It has been a huge success,” Green said. “All are extremely popular.”

While the menu has been redone, many original items, including their popular chicken wings with “All You Can Eat” Mondays from 5 to 9 p.m. for $15.99, are still available. Also, burgers, tacos, beach bowls, sandwiches and salads are all offered, too. There are also kids’ meals like jumbo wings, cheese quesadillas and more.

With the fresh vibe, Hurricane Dockside Grill is encouraging a more interactive experience for families and adults. That includes a redesigned game room with foosball, shuffleboard, Jenga and board games.

“It’s great interaction with the parents and kids. Later at night, it’s the adults coming in from the outside bar,” Green said.

The outside tiki bar is the centerpiece, welcoming visitors with a beach-like atmosphere, complete with sand and Adirondack chairs. An open-air bar and seating in the front of the restaurant with 25 TVs throughout for sports lovers is a big draw.

The décor features a beach theme with surfboards up on the walls. The rustic beach environment makes it fun, filled with pinks, light blue and Caribbean-type colors. The 300-seat capacity restaurant includes two new private rooms for parties that can hold from 30 to 55 people.

Hurricane Dockside Grill is open Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Happy hour is every day from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Specials include $2 off all drafts, $3 glasses of wine, half price well drinks and several $6 small plates. There’s also a frozen cocktails menu, including the popular Tropical Hurricane with Cruzan guava and mango rums with a Myers’s dark rum floater.

Green hopes locals and visitors alike will rediscover what the newly made over Hurricane Dockside Grill is all about. “We’re a ‘Fun Florida Fish House,’” he said. “We want people to know about us. We’re more than just wings.”

Hurricane Dockside Grill is located at the Marketplace at Wycliffe at 4075 State Road 7. Order online, pick up or have your order delivered through Delivery Dudes and Uber Eats. For more information, call (561) 318-6107 or visit


Enjoy Overstuffed Sandwiches And Much More At New York Sandwich Company

Enjoy Overstuffed Sandwiches And Much More At New York Sandwich Company

If your taste buds are craving a classic New York-style deli sandwich, loaded with fresh-carved meats and cheeses on fresh-baked bread, oozing with flavor, then the New York Sandwich Company wants to be your go-to guys.

Nestled at the corner of South Shore Blvd. and Pierson Road, adjacent to Dunkin’ Donuts, the New York Sandwich Company is looking to fill a void in the area near the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center. The restaurant’s goal is to tantalize the taste buds and satisfy the appetites of both the equestrian community and year-round residents with a sandwich shop reminiscent of midtown Manhattan.

“Our tag line is, ‘Yeah… We’re Those Guys!’ and the reason that is, we’re the guys you go to if you’re craving a mile-high, full-pound sandwich. You can do it. We’re known for our overstuffed, giant New York sandwiches,” said Daniel de Liege, CEO of Deli Brands International and owner of the New York Sandwich Company.

Tell them to “New York it” when ordering and get a full pound of meat on any deli sandwich for an additional $5.

There’s more than 50 sandwich varieties to choose from. From the Reuben family, there’s the traditional corned beef, pastrami or a combo of the two, as well as a turkey option. For a different take on the classic, try menu creator Chef Bob Tocci’s very own “World Famous Grouper Reuben.”

“It was created by Chef Bob at one of our restaurants 10 years ago. You’ll see it on other menus, but it was created by Chef Bob. It’s on marble rye, and it is a little slice of heaven,” de Liege said.

Tocci hails from New York where he grew up in the kitchen alongside his mother and grandmother. He’s a Florida State University alum and a classically trained chef. He has nearly 40 years of restaurant experience from operations to menu design, including working with national chains like Applebee’s, Shooters and East Side Mario’s.

“My favorite sandwich is pastrami on grilled marble rye with melted swiss and Thousand Island [dressing],” Tocci said. “My next favorite is the ‘Big Italian Deluxe’ with fresh mozzarella, capicola, mortadella, salami, ham, prosciutto, lettuce, tomato, onion, olive oil and balsamic vinegar.”

Large or small appetite, the New York Sandwich Company has something for you. “Most of our sandwiches come small or large, but we have a variety of everything. Rotisserie chickens to go, all different flavors — and they’re only $8. We also have pre-made sandwiches in the cooler for people in a rush who want to grab-n-go,” Tocci said.

There’s also a kids’ menu offering an all-beef hot dog, sliders and more.

Along with the huge selection of sandwiches are several sides, from skin-on French fries and sweet potato fries, to macaroni and potato salad, mashed potatoes and hot vegetables. There are also hot entrees, with two specials each day, as well as a soup of the day. And don’t forget dessert! From freshly made cannoli to the house specialty, “Death by Chocolate Cake.”

“We have everything prepared in-house, freshly made, homemade from scratch,” de Liege said. “All of our meats are carved right in front of you. We cook those all in-house, so when you’re getting a turkey club, you’re getting fresh out of the oven, sliced right in front of you, and that’s what makes the difference — the freshness of the bread and the meats.”

The restaurant officially opened its doors in mid-December, and it already has had a heavy flow of customers. Inside seats 30, with the New York skyline, Statue of Liberty and a Times Square scene, painted throughout by South Florida artist Frank Ciccio Jr.

The quaint patio seats an additional 60 people, with newly added fans, lighting and a trellis full of climbing, colorful flowers.

“We’ll start doing some patio events, such as wine tastings and a small two-piece jazz band happy hour,” de Liege said. “We’ll be serving beer and wine. This is the first of this particular concept.”

He said that the new eatery is off to a successful start.

“There’s nothing in the western area of Wellington like it. In the season, particularly, there is so much of an influx in the two-mile-square radius, it’s just a natural location during the season,” de Liege said. “Off season, there are a lot of people living here year-round who are underserved.”

The restaurant also plans to host parties and special events at the nearby equestrian venues with a tent and food truck. Catering is also another service provided. “We’re a natural fit for your Memorial Day party, Fourth of July picnic or football games,” he explained.

De Liege added that he has put a focus on keeping prices down.

“We really paid attention to the area and worked out a pricing solution that’s really better than anyone out there,” he said. “You can get an overstuffed, when I say overstuffed, I’m talking more than a half a pound meat sandwich, which is 6 to 8 inches tall, for less than $10. We want to be known as the guys down here who are fulfilling that giant sandwich need.”

The Wellington location is the first of the New York Sandwich Company concept. The organization has four concepts in all, with plans to expand soon.

“If you want some big sandwiches, overstuffed, great quality of product… come see us here at the New York Sandwich Company,” Tocci said. “Yeah… we’re those guys, who will go above and beyond and do what it takes to make this location work and serve this community and help in any way we can.”

The New York Sandwich Company is located at 13501 South Shore Blvd. in Wellington. The restaurant delivers through Door Dash and Uber Eats. For more information, call (561) 530-4937 or visit


Lemongrass Asian Bistro Brings Tasty New Offerings To Wellington Green

Lemongrass Asian Bistro  Brings Tasty New Offerings To Wellington Green

Taste-tempting Pan-Asian cuisine is adding new flavor to the Mall at Wellington Green. Lemongrass Asian Bistro is one of the newest restaurants to offer shoppers, moviegoers and casual diners an experience full of imaginative dishes with a fresh, unique approach.

“It’s a good fit. It’s close to the movie theater. People can go for dining and entertainment all in one,” owner Art Piyavichayanont explained. “Our cuisine is Southeast Asian. We mesh Thai, Vietnamese, a touch of Chinese dishes and Japanese infused all together, as well as a full sushi bar.”

Piyavichayanont came to the United States from Thailand 22 years ago, following in his sister’s footsteps by getting into the restaurant business. They brought with them their family recipes. “My mother is still behind the kitchen,” he said.

A huge seller on the menu is Grandma’s Ribs, straight out of his grandma’s cookbook.

“It includes the herb lemongrass. The key is it takes three hours to make in order for it to fall off the bone,” Piyavichayanont said. “The pork ribs are marinated overnight with fried shallots and have a tangy, sour flavor with a tamarind reduction.”

Also wildly popular at Lemongrass are the handcrafted dumplings.

“All are homemade, every day,” he said. “We offer all different kinds: vegan, vegetable, chicken, pork and lobster.”

All are served with a homemade sauce. The Gyoza (chicken or pork dumplings) are either steamed or pan-fried. The same for the vegetable dumplings, which are made with soybeans, potatoes, corn, carrots and chives in a vinaigrette sweet soy reduction.

The Thai steamed dumpling is an open-faced pork dumpling with a vinaigrette sweet soy reduction. And, a favorite, the lobster shrimp shumai, is a Hong Kong-style lobster and shrimp dumpling.

Lemongrass opened its doors at the end of July, nestled next to the Paragon Movie Theater, with something to offer palates of all ages, according to Piyavichayanont, making it family friendly by offering a kids’ menu. On that is a kids’ bento box, with options including chicken fried rice, a sushi roll or stir fry noodles, along with tempura cheese sticks and fruit.

For the heartier appetites is the signature dish at Lemongrass, Lobster Pad Thai, which Piyavichayanont said has been a big hit with customers.

“We serve that dish a lot. It’s an eight-ounce lobster tail lightly battered and sautéed right with the Pad Thai.”

There’s also a Ramen Noodle Bar, which again, is all homemade. There’s also a wide offering from the full sushi bar, swirling with flavor. Try the popular Hurricane Roll, which includes spicy yellowtail, kani, cucumber, spicy tuna tartare and togarashi.

For crustacean lovers, there’s the Lobster Monster Roll made with tempura lobster tail, along with cucumber asparagus, masago and sesame seeds with the chef’s spicy sauce and wasabi mayo.

There are many vegan and gluten-free options, as well as organic tofu.

For something sweet, there are several options on the dessert menu. The top seller is the homemade Japanese cheesecake. Egg whites are mixed in, giving it a meringue-like texture, topped with a strawberry puree.

Aside from the food is the full bar, with a happy hour daily, serving up many fresh drink options, like the popular Lemongrass Cooler.

“We infuse our vodka with the herb lemongrass,” Piyavichayanont said. “It’s made with lemongrass-infused Tito Vodka, Nigori Sake, honey syrup, fresh lime juice and grapefruit bitter.”

The restaurant seats 170, which includes an outdoor patio, presenting a modern, urban and rustic flair rolled into one. Inside, the walls are covered with an equestrian-themed mural by artist Ruben Ubiera of Ubiera Studio of Delray Beach.

Vertical landscaping adorns the outside walls, filled with welcoming hanging baskets as part of an approach to offering a green experience, as well as an effort to use earth-friendly materials.

“We use no Styrofoam to-go boxes, only brown paper boxes that can be recycled, along with high-quality filtered water for the tables,” he said. “We also only serve organic tofu, non-GMO.”

Piyavichayanont and his co-owners Wanida Catchon and Tammy Grayson have a total of four Lemongrass locations in all, including Boca Raton, Delray Beach and West Palm Beach. With their cuisine earning many accolades over the years, they hope to also win over the hearts and stomachs at the new Wellington location. The team is also behind other popular restaurants across Palm Beach County, including Ramen Lab, Poké Lab and The Sea Southeast Asian Kitchen.

“There really is something for everyone,” Piyavichayanont said.

Lemongrass Asian Bistro is located at 10312 W. Forest Hill Blvd., Suite 204, in the Mall at Wellington Green near the Paragon Movie Theater. For more info., visit or call (561) 459-1598.


The Patio At Polo Shines As A Premier Dining And Event Space

The Patio At Polo Shines As A Premier Dining And Event Space

The Patio At Polo is back, celebrating its third year as a Wellington staple. Sheila Motley and chef Mat Allen’s stand-alone seasonal restaurant and event space has returned and is welcoming the community to experience its intimate atmosphere and bold dishes.

The husband-and-wife team, along with their young son Collins, are the driving forces and creative minds behind this enchanting dining locale, situated within the Palm Beach Polo & Country Club. Combining Motley’s talents for event management and catering with Allen’s skills in the kitchen, the family-run restaurant has quickly become one of the community’s most charming jewels.

“We had the idea for the Patio At Polo because we spend so much time here each year that we wanted a way to utilize our skills in the culinary industry, as well as provide Wellington with a new and unique spot to enjoy wonderful food coupled with a great environment,” Motley explained. “I’m so proud that our vision came to fruition. We’ve had such a warm reception, and I’m excited to return for our third year of business.”

Overflowing with character thanks to its open-air concept, creative dishes and a wine list curated specifically with Wellington residents in mind, the Patio At Polo benefits from the combined talents of both culinary expert owners.

Classically trained chef Allen, who has worked for the Queen of England and the Royal Family at Windsor Castle, oversees the menu and food preparation. Guests can expect to be treated to premier cuisine sure to impress.

With a reputation for success in the catering and event planning spheres, Motley knows how to navigate the intricacies associated with event organization. A longtime equestrian, her ties to Wellington go beyond the dining scene and extend into the winner’s circle at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center.

Between Motley and Allen, the dynamic pair pose the perfect skill set to build and grow their restaurant.

“I follow Sheila,” Allen laughed. “Really, our little man, Collins, is the big boss. He runs the show. He preps, he greets tables and he tells the servers when the tables need water or checks.”

Though Allen is quick to credit his wife and son, he is equal part of the family trio holding the reins. With much experience as a first-class chef, Allen brings his culinary expertise to the first-rate menu. The team at the Patio At Polo are experts at preparing both traditional favorites and unique, new dishes. Whether you’re craving to try something new or savor a traditional favorite, the dynamic menu is sure to excite, featuring classics such as a burger trio and fish tacos, complemented by plentiful options for the more adventurous palate, including seared scallops in a butternut puree, shrimp and grits in a bacon marmalade, and sun-dried tomato basil ice cream.

Adding to the appeal, the restaurant offers a uniquely family-friendly setting to appease both adults and children. Situated on an expansive lawn, it allows for children to play together beside the open-air restaurant within clear view of their parents, making for a stress-free and memorable dining experience for the whole family.

“We wanted to give Wellington what it deserves — to give them something new, something creative and something different,” Allen said. “People enjoy the Patio At Polo because they feel like they can escape a bit. You feel like you’re not in town. You get out of the shopping malls, the strip malls and the parking lots. Our space is unique in that sense.”

The Patio At Polo exemplifies the best that Wellington has to offer in a casual, yet elegant, atmosphere. Boasting a charming ambiance and an inventive menu, the unique open-air restaurant has been garnering local praise and attracting sold-out crowds.

“We have been so lucky that the community has accepted the Patio At Polo so warmly. Mat and I had wanted to open a restaurant in Wellington for quite a while, and to have it thriving means a lot to us,” Motley said. “We love inviting first-time diners to experience the restaurant, but seeing returning faces is especially rewarding. All of the support has given us another reason to do what we love.”

The Patio At Polo is located at 11198 Polo Club Road in Wellington. With the winter season in full swing, reservations are recommended. For more information, call or text (561) 660-3300. To view the current menu, visit


The Trophy Room Pairs Sophisticated Dining With A Dynamic Nightlife Experience

The Trophy Room Pairs Sophisticated Dining With A Dynamic Nightlife Experience

The Trophy Room, opening this fall on South Shore Blvd. in Wellington, is in for the win. It promises a sophisticated dining experience that combines a wide variety of New American cuisine, a lux atmosphere and dynamic nightlife, all in one.

“We want to create something that isn’t just a good meal — it’s an experience,” Trophy Room co-owner Rob Gray explained.

Gray and his team hope to score big, taking over the location that formerly housed the Grille Fashion Cuisine, a hotspot popular with locals and visiting equestrians alike.

Gray, who grew up in a family of equestrian riders, has teamed up with his friend and business partner, Teddy Vlock. The two formed T&R Development — first focusing on real estate, and now, a newly formed hospitality division. The duo hopes to win over the hearts and appetites of both the Wellington community, and those who visit the winter equestrian capital of the world, by offering a global menu.

“The menu is a great mix of what you would call New American,” Gray said. “It’s a broad term, giving you the freedom to touch on so many different areas. It has the steak house side to it, then Asian, mixed with some Italian flair. So, it’s a great combination of cuisines.”

Gray wants the entire experience to be desirable to people of all ages.

“Something that appeals to a younger crowd that wants to come in and have a meal that they’re sharing, and maybe later dinner,” he explained. “But also be able to cater to an older crowd that wants to have the traditional appetizer, entrée and dessert.”

Designing the menu is Executive Chef Joseph Bonavita Jr., a New York native who brings to the kitchen more than 12 years of experience. Bonavita studied at Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in Chicago under world-renowned chefs. He was most recently executive chef of the Tideline Ocean Resort & Spa in Palm Beach, as well as executive chef of 50 Ocean in Delray Beach.

“He has a lot of experience, and he’s very versatile,” Gray said. “He has a passion for food. He loves cooking with all fresh ingredients.”

On the menu are a variety of sharable options.

“We have an extensive sharable menu, like steak tartare with octopus. We have a snacks menu with items like onion dip, as well as shaved Brussels sprouts,” Gray said. “Also, a sweet corn bisque, as well as everything from steak and seafood, a raw bar, to homemade pastas. We’re really going to utilize the brick oven for pizza and a few other dishes. It’s a great asset.”

Gray and his team are also trying to source products locally. “We’re trying to work with as many local people as possible,” he said. “We’re also bringing in oysters from Island Creek Oyster Farm in Massachusetts, which is one of the best oyster providers in the country.”

This isn’t Gray’s first experience with the hospitality business. The 27-year-old entrepreneur began working in the equestrian business at age 18. He developed the Gallery nightlife venue at the Winter Equestrian Festival back in 2015. After much brainstorming, he and his team came up with the name Trophy Room.

“There’s no escaping the equestrian culture in Wellington. I didn’t want to play directly off of it. It seemed a good balance of embodying what we wanted to achieve, which was a lux rich interior with high-quality finishings. A great experience, classic food, but keeping with what you imagine to be in Wellington without being so direct about it,” Gray explained.

The restaurant space has undergone a complete transformation. It seats 175, which includes outdoor seating and the bar, along with a private dining room for 35, with the goal of streamlining it all together to give it a feeling of synergy.

A color scheme of black, white, navy and gold fills the restaurant. To give it a lounge feel, banquette seating fills the space with tufted navy leather and white Carrera tables with brushed gold bases. The private dining room is designed with navy velvet chairs. The tables in the room are an ebony-stained wood with white director’s chairs.

A fully custom back bar has also been built with black-and-white marble.

“The bar is now directly in front of the kitchen with mahogany shelves, an antique mirror, gold accents and an LED-lit back bar. It’s going to be really beautiful,” Gray said.

The full bar includes an extensive and diverse wine list.

“We’re at 110 bottles. It’s a lot of American vineyards, but because of Wellington being so international in the winter months, we have a great international selection of Spanish, French and Italian wines, among other countries,” he said.

An upscale cocktail list to suit all tastes was also created. “We really would love to bring an elevated cocktail culture with specialty cocktails ranging from your traditional margaritas to your classics like your gin fizz,” Gray explained.

The team plans to offer a regular happy hour to keep the Wellington community engaged and close to home.

“I think it’s something that will be a great addition to the community,” Gray said of the new restaurant. “Our goal is to bring something that isn’t currently in Wellington and wasn’t in Wellington before, which is a fine-dining restaurant with a lounge-type atmosphere and an upscale dining experience. There’s so much more to a great experience, a great meal, than the quality of the food. It’s the overall atmosphere, and so much of that comes from a great staff, from the moment you walk in the door to when you leave — it’s so important.”

The Trophy Room is located at 12300 South Shore Blvd. in Wellington. For more information, call (561) 793-2110 or visit



Dive In To ‘Asian Cajun’ Seafood At New Submarine Crab

Dive In To ‘Asian Cajun’ Seafood At New Submarine Crab

“Asian Cajun” is taking seafood to a whole new level at Submarine Crab, a new eatery located in the Pointe at Wellington Green.

Owner Tai Le is fusing his Vietnamese roots with Louisiana-style seasoning, hoping to make a big splash in the Wellington area. It’s his second South Florida location of Submarine Crab.

“This type of food has been around for 10 years. It started out in California, which is where I’m from,” Le said. “Because I go back and forth, and we live here, we always noticed the real lack of flavorful seafood, because the traditional model for seafood is, you boil the seafood, steam it and dip it in butter. For us, it’s just not flavorful. So, that’s where this type of concept came about.”

The Cajun seasoning and the sauce are what make all the difference, Le explained. “Typically, in Louisiana-style seafood, you hear of seafood boils. We do that as a first process, and we can serve it that way like Louisiana, but we sauté it first in our sauces. It’s really our sauces that differentiate us versus what traditional seafood is,” he said.

Everything is made with a blend of garlic butter and a variety of seasonings, all at different spice levels. The torpedo sauce is hugely popular.

“Our lemon pepper, our classic Cajun, our torpedo sauces are all Cajun-based sauces,” Le said. “It does have cayenne in it, so it does have a little bit of spice. Those three sauces come standard as mild, and then we can spice it accordingly.”

The seafood takes center stage. Always live, never frozen. “Our most popular items would be our shrimp, as well as our snow crab,” Le said.

The crawfish at Submarine Crab comes from Louisiana during season, which runs from December to about July. When crawfish season ends, they get it from a farm in California.

“Because we are Louisiana-style and Cajun-based, crawfish is something that we really focus on. There’s not a lot of places that do crawfish,” Le said, adding that fresh crawfish tastes much better than frozen. “If we can’t get it fresh, we don’t offer it.”

Food is served up family style with three combo meals to choose from, with samples of all the different offerings, designed to suit any seafood lover’s palate. All come with a choice of clams or mussels.

Combo number one also includes shrimp, crawfish or both. Combo two includes shrimp or crawfish, as well as a choice of lobster tails, Dungeness crab, snow crab or king crab. Combo number three — the biggest of the combos — comes with a little bit of everything, including two pounds of snow crab legs.

“Typically, a customer will eat one pound of seafood. Combo one or two are three pounds. That will feed two to four people. Combo three could feed a family of four,” Le said.

All combos include sausages, corn, potatoes, hard-boiled eggs and bread. “It’s a good counter between the sweetness of the corn and the savory sauces,” he explained.

You won’t see a “market value” on the menu. All seafood is priced.

“We want to offer a very fair price for what we do. Although the price of seafood continually goes up, we’ve absorbed a lot of the price increase, because we want to be sure that we’re offering a reasonable price,” Le said.

Side dishes vary from traditional hush puppies with a hint of jalapeño peppers, to Cajun fried rice and crab Rangoon with a twist.

“We put crab meat in with fried shallots. All made in-house. We use our honey mayo dipping sauce, which is the same as we use for our wings. It gives it a sweet taste with a kick,” Le said.

Other traditional Cajun dishes include gumbo with okra. Also, seafood pasta with a Cajun-based sauce. There’s a selection of po’ boy sandwiches, from shrimp or catfish to oyster or sausage — all served up with a side of Cajun fries.

“Most po’ boys come with lettuce. We use cabbage instead. It tends to have a better texture because it’s crunchier. With our po’ boys, it’s all about our sauces,” Le said. “Sauce is everything.”

To wash it all down, there are “Ocean Fog” specialty drinks that come complete with a foggy effect. They’re a fusion of Asian green tea mixed with flavorful jellies and basil seeds for texture. Dry ice is added to give it a fog mist. Teas come in three flavors: the Mermaid, a passion fruit; Captain Andy’s, a strawberry green tea; and the Seahorse, which is mango flavored.

There’s even a soapy treat for your hands when you’re done digging in.

“We developed a whole hand wash to remove the garlic smell,” Le explained.  “Instead of using a wet nap, you use suds to wash your hands, and the fragrance helps to remove the garlic smell.”

Le’s first Florida location is in Pembroke Pines. His location in Wellington opened Aug. 1 and already has quite a following. This is the fourth location in all, including two in California.

The 80-seat restaurant offers eat-in or take-out, where the food to go is triple-bagged to prevent breakage.

Originally a pre-med student, Le and his business partner, a chemistry major, stumbled into the restaurant biz. Something that he feels is working out well. “For us, whatever we do, we really pour our energy into it, to make sure it’s successful,” he said, adding that they strive to regularly get feedback, and tailor the menu to meet customers’ needs.

Submarine Crab is located at 10140 W. Forest Hill Blvd., Suite 170, in the Pointe at Wellington Green. Hours are Monday through Friday from 3 to 10 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from noon to 10 p.m. For more information, call (561) 355-0533 or visit


Tasty Treats and More At Glazed & Confused Eatery

Tasty Treats and More At Glazed & Confused Eatery

Glazed & Confused Eatery owner Sean Upson has been serving breakfast, lunch, coffee and donuts to the families of Wellington since January 2017. Glazed & Confused is not your average donut shop, which is made evident by the restaurant’s inviting staff, fun décor, and full breakfast and lunch menus.

Upson, who has been in the restaurant business since his early 20s, opened Glazed & Confused to offer Wellington residents a fresh, new spot to grab high-quality food, coffee and donuts.

“We aren’t just a donut shop,” Upson said. “In reality, we are a full restaurant that also happens to make good donuts.”

Glazed & Confused not only has a full menu, but it also has some of the best breakfast and lunch specials available. Throughout the summer, customers can purchase a full breakfast of two eggs, home fries, a bagel and coffee for $3.99 every Monday through Friday from 7:30 to 10 a.m. For lunch, patrons can choose from a burger, a chicken sandwich, a tuna salad sandwich or an egg salad sandwich for $6.99. “It is the best deal in town,” Upson said.

Along with the breakfast special, Upson highlighted some of the dishes that have turned Glazed & Confused into a favorite for Wellington locals.

The two versions of a traditional avocado toast are big favorites. The original avocado toast is served on multigrain bread with thinly sliced tomato and two over-medium eggs. Glazed & Confused adds a twist to the traditional dish by also offering its nova avocado toast, which is served just as the original, but topped with fresh nova salmon.

The “Jono” — named after one of Upson’s menu and business collaborators — is another frequently requested dish. It features challah French toast made with bananas, strawberries, blueberries, granola and topped with a strawberry drizzle.

Upson is currently working on expanding the featured portion of the menu to include a wider variety of French toast options.

The menu also includes several dishes, such as the Irish Benedict, that are accompanied by corned beef hash, which is freshly made in house.

“We make all of our corned beef hash,” Upson said. “We don’t use any processed ingredients, so that we can make a very high-quality dish.”

For lunch, customers can order from a variety of available sandwiches, such as a classic grilled cheese, a tuna melt or a smoked brisket sandwich, or from a list of popular wraps, like the sundried chicken salad wrap or the California turkey wrap.

Of course, Upson’s menu would be incomplete without the vast variety of homemade donuts.

Upson has developed more than 60 donut flavors and offers about 15 of them daily. The donut part of his menu, Upson explained, offers more options for a young and family-based clientele.

“The cool and neat thing about this restaurant is that families have the option to come here and give their kids a treat, like a donut, while they can relax and enjoy good food for themselves,” Upson said.

Though donut flavors change seasonally, some crowd favorites are the maple bacon donut, the PB&J donut and a classic sprinkle donut.

Aside from the appealing breakfast and lunch items, Upson credits the overall ambiance of his restaurant to be the thing that keeps people coming back.

“I think people appreciate the fact that we are a family business and that they can really adopt all of us as part of their own family,” he said.

Upson currently runs the restaurant with a small staff, which includes his three children.

“This truly is a local and family-run operation. My 10-year-old, Ryan, can make donuts from scratch now, and my two older ones, Evan and Kayla, help out serving tables,” he said. “We also hire a lot of high school students, which is really cool because it allows us to give a lot of them their first job opportunity.”

Upson believes that the most individual aspect of his restaurant is that he, because of his high customer retention and return rate, can greet many of his guests by name.

“I probably know about half of our customers by name, which is such a special and neat part of all of this,” Upson said.

The restaurant is open from 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Friday, and from 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. on weekends. Dine-in or take-out services are available daily, and private party inquiries are also accepted.

Glazed & Confused Eatery is located at 2803 State Road 7, Suite 300, in the plaza with Trader Joe’s. For more info., visit or call (561) 847-4346.


Enjoy Affordable And Delicious Japanese And Thai Cuisine At Kabuki

Enjoy Affordable And Delicious Japanese And Thai Cuisine At Kabuki

Kabuki has brought its affordable and delicious Japanese and Thai cuisine to Wellington. The third location of the local restaurant chain opened on State Road 7 in April.

Owner Ting Yamsiriwong opened the first Kabuki location in downtown West Palm Beach on Clematis Street in 2011. A Palm Beach Gardens location opened shortly thereafter.

Because many customers who dined in the West Palm Beach and Palm Beach Gardens locations work in those areas but live in Wellington, Yamsiriwong eyed this area for his latest venture.

“I like to spread my business out,” he explained. “Many of my clients in the other locations had asked when we would be opening in Wellington.”

The Wellington location has already proven to be quite different than the other two locations, mainly due to the many families filling the restaurant’s tables every night. “I love it here,” Yamsiriwong said. “It’s a totally different crowd. We serve a lot more families here.”

Aside from the full menu of dishes ranging from hand-crafted sushi rolls to different stir-fry dishes and pad Thai dishes, a key reason why many Wellington families are dining at Kabuki is the several affordable specials offered every day.

Kabuki’s lunch special is particularly enticing. From 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., patrons can choose any of the available entrees for a discounted price starting at $8.95, or a you-pick-two special in which customers can choose two different sushi rolls or one entrée and one sushi roll for $12.95. All lunches also include a soup or salad to start.

Some of the available lunch entrees are Kabuki’s variety of curries — red, panang, green, pineapple and massaman — stir-fry, teriyaki chicken and sashimi. The available sushi rolls for the lunch special are Kabuki’s California roll, spicy krab roll and spicy tempura roll.

“We wanted to have a way to draw people in and make sure to do so in a reasonably priced way,” said Ann-Marie Sementelli, the restaurant’s manager. “This is a lunch you can do and not break the bank.”

For those looking for a way to unwind after work or enjoy time off on a weekend, Kabuki offers a long-lasting happy hour every day of the week starting at 3 p.m. and ending at 6:30 p.m. Select cocktails, sakes and well drinks are offered at half price. Beers, such as the Singha, are offered for as low as $2.50. Kabuki’s signature Pom Margarita — made with Jose Cuervo Silver tequila, triple sec, pomegranate liquor and lime — is offered for $6 during happy hour.

“I would say these are all classic drinks that we’ve made into our own. For us, it’s all about the pricing, presentation and quality,” Sementelli said.

Also during happy hour, select small dishes and tapas are all $5 or $6. Signature sushi rolls are available for $5, while unique dishes like Kabuki’s fried empanadas — filled with stuffed minced chicken, sweet potato, curry powder and plum sauce — are available for $6.

“My goal was always to be in the restaurant business,” Yamsiriwong said. “I like having a business [in which] people don’t have to spend a lot of money and they can have a comfortable place.”

On the regular menu, some of Kabuki’s most popular dishes are the Tuna Yukke, the Pineapple Fried Rice and the Kabuki Lobster Roll.

The Tuna Yukke — Kabuki’s most popular appetizer — is best described as a tower of tuna. It is made beautifully with stacked and diced raw ahi tuna, a layer of avocado, a layer of orange, smelt roe and kimchee sauce on top. The simple dish is a restaurant and customer favorite.

The Pineapple Fried Rice is famous for its many appetizing ingredients and beautiful presentation. The mixture of rice, shrimp, chicken, pineapple, onions, tomatoes, cashews and raisins is served ready to eat inside of a half of a pineapple.

Also known for its elaborate presentation, the Kabuki Lobster Roll is as impressive as it is rich in flavor. Served on a small sushi boat, or large plate, the sushi roll is made with lobster tempura, asparagus and avocado with red tobiko, eel sauce and spicy mayo on top. On the side is a portion of kani lobster salad and a martini glass filled with fried lobster.

For Yamsiriwong, owning Kabuki and serving the people of South Florida has been an ongoing dream. But what truly fulfills and rewards him is making customers happy by serving them good quality food.

“I like the concept of what we’re doing here,” he said. “I’ve been in the restaurant business for 30 years, but there’s nothing like South Florida. I want to have the Kabuki name out there, but it’s more than just the profit. I like to see customers smile and be happy about our food.”

Kabuki is open from 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, and from 11:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. The restaurant is located at 2465 S. State Road 7, Suite 100, in Wellington. For more information, visit or call (561) 323-4888.