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Best New Restaurants for Outdoor Dining in Palm Beach County: From Mexican to Seafood

CEO Khai Intela
Here’s a restaurant list to save for a sunny day. Or for a day that begs to be savored at an al fresco table over shared dishes and leisurely drinks. Or for days when you’re...

Best New Restaurants for Outdoor Dining in Palm Beach County

Here’s a restaurant list to save for a sunny day. Or for a day that begs to be savored at an al fresco table over shared dishes and leisurely drinks. Or for days when you’re craving a bit of ambiance and nice views to go with your quick meal or snack.

Those who seek any of the above may be glad to know that Palm Beach County’s outdoor dining options have expanded, thanks to a batch of new restaurants.

They include an upscale New York restaurant with a twinkly patio, a fountain-view tiki bar with Indian bites, a couple of Mexican-inspired spots, and a neighborhood seafood market with a waterfront lunch deck.

Harry’s, West Palm Beach

The leafy outdoor patio at Harry

This buzzy Wall Street-area restaurant ventured out of New York for the first time in June 2023 to open a swanky outpost at The Square plaza downtown. Months later, Harry’s unveiled its dining patio, a leafy, umbrella-shaded dining space that twinkles at dusk.

While the indoor dining areas and bar bustle with diners and chatter, the patio offers a more intimate dining experience. Reservations are a must to ensure a table at any of Harry’s dining areas.

On the menu: Harry’s signature Beef Wellington with truffle sauce ($74), seafood appetizer platter for four ($98), shrimp scampi with squid ink linguine ($28), whole branzino with lemon-thyme vinaigrette ($38), dry-aged prime bone-in New York strip ($86).

Harry’s introduced lunch service in late September. That midday menu includes the signature Wellington ($46 at lunch), Hanover steak and cheese sandwich with caramelized onions ($28), Jonah crab cake with remoulade ($25), and a roasted branzino salad with arugula, olives, and lemon-thyme vinaigrette ($29).

Harry’s: 384 S. Rosemary Ave., West Palm Beach, 561-834-5010, HarrysBarRestaurant.com

Ela Curry & Cocktails, Palm Beach Gardens

The patio at the newly relocated and renamed Ela Curry & Cocktails in Palm Beach Gardens offers a breezy space for enjoying tiki cocktails and Indian-inspired bites.

When the former Ela Curry Kitchen moved into a larger space just steps away in December 2023, the traditional Indian restaurant gained a large outdoor dining and bar patio with lovely, front-row views of the plaza fountain at The Shops of Donald Ross Village.

With that new al fresco space came a new rum-bar idea, an island-themed concept known as the Peacock Tiki Bar. It’s an ideal space to pair Ela’s more bar-friendly bites with an inspired lineup of rum-infused cocktails, one of which is served in a stunning, peacock-shaped ceramic vessel, tiny umbrella and all.

Chef/co-owner Pushkar Marathe, who also co-owns Stage Kitchen with restaurant partner Andy Dugard, thinks of the fountain patio as a space where he can introduce newcomers to his native Indian flavors in bar-friendly bites.

On the menu: well-stuffed lamb samosas with cilantro-mint chutney ($13), perfectly crispy Rhode Island calamari with mango-achaar seasoning aioli ($19), crispy chicken wings with curry leaves and ranch raita ($17), a shareable masala dosa that’s served with coconut and peanut-tomato chutneys and a ramekin of sambar lentil stew ($16), a masala tilefish sandwich ($25), and other bites good for cocktail or beer-pairing.

Good deal: Ela serves happy hour specials daily from 2 to 6 p.m., offering $12 specialty cocktails, $5 beers, and half off of wine and spirits. Select dishes are discounted as well.

Ela Curry & Cocktails: 4650 Donald Ross Rd., Suite 100, Palm Beach Gardens, 561-345-2196, ElaCurryKitchen.com

Outclaws Seafood, North Palm Beach

Outclaws Seafood market in North Palm Beach opened a new lunchtime café with waterside views.

Seafood market owner Jason Brown never set out to open a restaurant, much less a dining terrace. As the son of one of the founders of TooJay’s (Jay Brown), he worked various jobs at the West Palm-based deli chain. But he prefers the seafood business. His Outclaws Seafood market and wholesale business are an important distributor of stone crab claws in South Florida.

But when he moved the retail market from an industrial patch of Lake Park to a busy stretch of North Palm Beach in the spring of 2023, he found the waterfront deck at the new location ideal for adding a few chairs, maybe a couple of tables for customers who want to enjoy their fish dip and such with a nice view.

An expanded version of that dining-deck idea became reality Feb. 1 when Brown opened Outclaws’ new lunch café. And there’s more than fish dip and crackers to be had at the new spot. There are creative, chef-driven seafood dishes that can be enjoyed at a row of umbrella-shaded outdoor tables by the waterway or any of the new indoor tables.

Brown recently brought on the talented Matthew Candelaria, a former chef at the Oceano Kitchen, to run the kitchen.

On the menu: A vibrant Chilean langoustine ceviche with local citrus, red onion, avocado, jalapeño, and cilantro ($18), a flavorful tuna poke with macadamia nuts ($18), a creamy, spot-on New England clam chowder served with crusty bread slices ($8), Maine lobster roll with celery and chive served on a split-top challah bun ($26), fresh fish sandwiches on challah ($16 to $27), Outclaws’ locally famous fish dip with crostini ($13), and other dishes.

Café hours: The lunch service is offered Tuesday through Saturday from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Outclaws: 640 Northlake Blvd., 561-517-8707, OutclawsSeafood.com

A’Lu Mexican Cuisine, Boynton Beach

Corn lasagna is on the menu at A’Lu Mexican Cuisine in Boynton Beach.

Open since December 2023, this San Diego-Mex-inspired restaurant takes its name from the mythical Mayan woodland spirits known as aluxes. And while there is no forest setting at the new A’Lu, there is a waterside dining patio at the stylishly set restaurant.

On the menu: Florida sweet corn (elote) with cotija, Tajín, Serrano chiles, and house mayo ($12), short rib empanada with mole-aioli drizzle ($15), crispy taco stuffed with birria-style goat in herbs with consommé, onion, and cilantro ($6), corn “lasagna” layered with corn tortillas, smoked jalapeños, pickled onions, Oaxaca cheese, and roasted poblano gravy ($20), chargrilled mahi with tequila and agave marinade ($32), and other dishes.

A’Lu Mexican Cuisine: 1080 Gateway Blvd., Boynton Beach, 561-810-4572, AluPalmBeach.com

El Camino, Boca Raton

A large fireplace adds ambiance to the outdoor dining patio at El Camino restaurant.

Not only does the Delray Beach-founded El Camino Mexican restaurant concept continue to grow as a local chain, but it’s also opening larger restaurants. Case in point: El Camino’s newest, 10,000-square-foot location at Midtown Boca, is four times the size of its original Delray restaurant.

The new location also boasts a large al fresco dining area that includes about 80 seats near a huge outdoor fireplace.

On the menu: Shareable smoked brisket-topped nachos with Jack cheese, pinto beans, pico de gallo, scallions, and guacamole ($17), a trio of forest mushroom tacos with roasted poblano, queso blanco, charred tomatillo, grilled onions, and salsa ranchera ($14), achiote chicken enchiladas ($16), chile-rubbed carne asada ($28), and other small and large plates.

El Camino Boca: 5377 Town Center Road, Boca Raton, 561-980-7700, ElCaminoBocaRaton.com

Liz Balmaseda is a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist for The Palm Beach Post, part of the USA Today Network. She covers the local food and dining beat. Follow her on Instagram and Post on Food Facebook. She can be reached by email at [email protected].