Honda Classic 2021: Where to grab a bite, drink on PGA Boulevard
Smaller crowds will be allowed to witness the annual Honda Classic this year when it swings through the PGA National Resort and Spa in Palm Beach Gardens from March 15 to 21. Thanks to coronavirus safety protocols, the tournament will limit attendance to one-fifth of its usual numbers.
Even with reduced daily attendance, there ought to be plenty of Classic-goers in search of good food and beverages near the resort. They’ll find a PGA Boulevard scene that’s decidedly different from last year’s. (Thank you, pandemic.)
Here’s an eat-drink guide to the Gardens’ dining corridor, the PGA Boulevard strip, and surroundings, traveling west to east, from PGA National’s greens to U.S. 1.
The closest eatery to the PGA resort, this family-owned Thai restaurant is a go-to spot for local and visiting golfers and other star athletes.
- 7100 Fairway Dr.,561-691-5662
Cucina Palm Beach Gardens
This newish addition to the LA Fitness plaza near the PGA resort is a spinoff of the popular Cucina Pizza by Design at the Palm Beach Outlets. Expect customizable and creative pizzas, pastas and other entrees, plus a range of wines. Cucina offers curbside pickup, takeout and delivery.
- 7100 Fairway Dr., suite 61A, 561-557-9510
This market/bar/restaurant is a terrific stop for a cocktail or wine by the bottle or glass. It offers a nice menu of small plates and some well-presented entrees. The place also offers affordable “Wine Down Wednesday” specials and regular live-music nights. Outdoor seating is available.
- 5530 PGA Blvd., 561-425-5651
A fancy, regional Italian restaurant, La Masseria is an outpost of a popular New York theater-district spot. Expect homemade pastas, a fine wine selection and what may be the best cheesecake on the strip. Lots of al fresco seating here.
- 5520 PGA Blvd., 561-660-8272
Kabuki Sushi Thai Tapas
A charming spot to grab a sushi roll or a favorite Thai curry dish. Plenty of outdoor seating.
- 5080 PGA Blvd., Suite 105, 561-776-8778
An American brasserie, The Cooper has been a bustling spot since opening nearly seven years ago. It’s a local hot spot for cocktails, dinner and Sunday brunch. The menu offers everything from charcuterie and cheese boards to yummy bar snacks to veggie-rich dishes featuring local produce to meatier selections. Lots of outdoor seating options, including a bar.
- 4610 PGA Blvd., 561-622-0032
This casual café, which features a bakery onsite, serves breakfast, lunch and dinner, plus coffee, homemade pastries and gelato.
- 4580 PGA Blvd., 561-622-3222
Spoto’s Oyster Bar
This Gardens mainstay has been under new ownership since December 2017, but the restaurant has not strayed from its seafood devotion. The new proprietors, who also own Bimini Twist restaurant in suburban West Palm, have given the place a much needed makeover. Sit at the bar for a dozen oysters and drinks, then segue to dinner for seafood classics. There’s plenty of outdoor seating here.
- 4560 PGA Blvd., 561-776-9448
Saito’s Japanese Steakhouse
This local chain offers a family-friendly spot for sushi and hibachi.
- 4675 PGA Blvd., (at Midtown), 561-202-6888
Part of a national chain of pizzerias partly owned by LeBron James, Blaze shines amid the DIY-meal trend in fast-casual dining. Build your own personal pizza with abandon here.
- 4665 PGA Blvd., (at Midtown), 561-246-6692
Palm Beach County’s premier plant-based eatery, upscale Christopher’s Kitchen has built a regional vegan following, thanks to its creative dishes that will win over even carnivores. You come here to fall in love with cashew cream and macadamia ricotta, fresh juices and nut “mylks,” abundant salads, soups, pizza, bowls and decadent desserts. A nicely curated selection of wines is served -- craft beer as well. An outdoor seating area is available.
- 4783 PGA Blvd., (at Midtown), 561-318-6191
This casual, build-your-own-bowl restaurant leans Mediterranean in flavor. Expect toppings galore - there are more than a dozen options.
- 4747 PGA Blvd., (at Midtown), 561-366-7753
World famous chef Laurent Tourondel opened this upscale trattoria in November 2019 in the former Vic and Angelo’s space. Tourondel was the founder and original chef of the “BLT” (Bistro Laurent Tourondel) restaurant brands that include BLT Steak, BLT Burger and BLT Prime. At Scusi, he pays tribute to his Italian grandmother with a menu of classics and wood-fired pizzas.
- 4520 PGA Blvd., 561-429-6938
This popular upmarket chain serves a variety of American classics. The garlicky Steak N’ Fries platter is hard to beat.
- 4625 PGA Blvd., (at Midtown), 561-694-2711
Expect a seafood-centric menu and an upscale-casual setting at this national-chain restaurant.
- 4635 PGA Blvd., (at Midtown), 561-799-2965
This traditional spot offers bar options for those who want a steakhouse feel without the full steakhouse meal.
- 4645 PGA Blvd., (at Midtown), 561-630-3660
This Gardens classic and chef-owned restaurant is a favorite spot for a romantic dinner or wine-bar interlude. Expect a nice menu of American-meets-global classics.
- 4533 PGA Blvd., 561-627-2662
Here’s a welcoming Irish spot with tasty comfort dishes and regular live music. In addition to classic Irish fare, there’s a full menu of starters, burgers and entrees, plus a range of beers, wines and cocktails. In the Gardens, this 26-year-old mainstay is the place to be on St. Patrick’s Day. There’s outdoor seating here as well.
- 10971 N. Military Tr. (plaza located on PGA Blvd.), 561-691-4366
Beef and Bloomin’ Onions are served at this national chain.
- 10933 N. Military Tr. (plaza on PGA Blvd.), 561-625-0793
The family-owned pizzeria opened in the spring of 2016. On the menu: pizza, pastas and other Italian classics, plus wine and beer.
- 10965 N. Military Tr. (in Publix plaza at PGA Boulevard), 561-812-2400
This breakfast-and-lunch spot is just a couple of years old but it has that vintage feel of a go-to diner. Come here for an old-school tuna salad sandwich or maybe a simply grilled ham-and-cheese on toasty challah.
- 10961 N. Military Tr. (in Publix plaza at PGA Boulevard), 561-508-2914
DOWNTOWN PALM BEACH GARDENS
The shopping and entertainment complex houses movie theaters, a Whole Foods Market (with an extensive prepared foods section), interesting boutiques and a range of dining and drinking options that include Avocado Cantina taquería, Voodoo Bayou New Orleans-themed restaurant, Texas de Brazil steakhouse, Cheesecake Factory, Grimaldi’s Pizzeria and Le Bouchon French bistro.
Party alert: Voodoo Bayou is hosting an "ultimate Honda Classic after-party" on Saturday, March 20. It coincides with the restaurant's one-year anniversary celebration. There's live music from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. To reserve a spot, call 561-888-6703.
- Downtown Palm Beach Gardens: 11701 Lake Victoria Gardens (just off PGA Blvd., east of I-95)
THE GARDENS MALL
Yes, there’s a food court at this upscale mall -- and it boasts a newish Shake Shack -- but the dining options don’t end there. Eateries include Cooper’s Hawk wine-centric restaurant, Park Avenue BBQ Grille, Brio Tuscan Grille, California Pizza Kitchen, The Bistro at Nordstrom and PF Chang’s China Bistro.
- The Gardens Mall: 3101 PGA Blvd.
Amid the big-box offerings (Best Buy, Total Wine), you’ll find a handful of dining options, including Chili’s, Sal’s Italian Ristorante, Cool’a Fishbar, Moe’s Southwest Grill, Newk’s Eatery, The Great Greek, Five Guys and Gelato Grotto. But if you’re looking for a civilized drink and a steak, check out The Capital Grille.
- Legacy Place: 11290 Legacy Ave., (on PGA Blvd., east of I-95)
Anthony’s Coal Fired Pizza
There’s excellent pizza -- and some of the best house salad on the boulevard -- at this popular spot.
- 2680 PGA Blvd., (at the PGA Plaza, near Trader Joe’s), 561-804-7777
Olive U Mediterranean Grill
This indie, fast-casual spot serves an array of Middle Eastern-inspired dishes in a build-your-own fashion. Try the chicken shawarma over cinnamon-spiced rice with your choice of veggies and sauce.
- 2632 PGA Blvd., (at the PGA Plaza, near Trader Joe’s), 561-500-0103
Find delicious Thai dishes, noodles and sushi here, where they are served in a relaxed setting.
- 2626 PGA Blvd., (at the PGA Plaza, near Trader Joe’s), 561-660-6994
This waterfront restaurant’s name is a tribute to the lionfish. Expect a full surf-turf menu, sushi and happy hour specials. The restaurant’s back terrace looks out on the Soverel Harbour Marina.
- 2401 PGA Blvd., Suite 160, 561-472-7900
Carmine’s La Trattoria
Find classically prepared Italian favorites served in a waterfront setting. (The restaurant’s terrace offers a view of the Soverel Harbour Marina.)
- 2401 PGA Blvd. (next to Carmine’s market), 561-775-0186
This brand-new BurgerFi location, which opened March 8, serves a range of sumptuous burgers (including a vegan one), chicken sandwiches and hot dogs.
- 2466 PGA Blvd., 561-844-5528
Angry Moon Café
This wine bar and café offers a European-style menu daily and live music most nights. The café’s back terrace offers a view of the marina.
- 2401 PGA Blvd. (near Carmine’s market), 561-694-7945
The River House
The restaurant’s name pays tribute to the Gardens’ original River House, the iconic spot that anchored the PGA Boulevard waterfront from 1984 to 2016. It became BrickTop’s when it was bought by the national chain, but the new owners changed the name back to the River House after some customer confusion over the location. (There’s a BrickTop’s in Palm Beach as well.) Name change or not, the restaurant offers fine waterfront dining, a breezy tiki bar and a lovely brunch. Reservations are a must.
- 2373 PGA Blvd., 561-720-2595
Take the always-busy parking lot as a sign that this spot has one of the best views in Palm Beach Gardens. Expect waterfront cocktails, a large indoor dining room and a large, approachable menu.
- 2300 PGA Blvd., 561-694-1700
This upmarket national chain serves judiciously portioned, nicely prepared dishes in a swanky setting. Outdoor terrace, which overlooks the waterway, sits across the Intracoastal from the River House.
- 11611 Ellison Wilson Rd. (at PGA Blvd.), 561-625-5852
Acclaimed South Florida chef Pushkar Marathe has created a menu of Indian-inspired global plates designed to be shared. There’s a full bar and small lounge area, plus a spacious outdoor dining patio. A “Dosas and Mimosas” Sunday brunch is served as well.
- 2000 PGA Blvd. (Suite 5506, facing PGA at City Centre complex), 561-408-3685
Twisted Trunk Brewing
First, the bad news: They don’t make food here. The good news: They make beer. Named for the stately banyan trees that appoint the city’s original entrance, the brewery offers a good range of craft beers on tap, from saisons to double IPAs and stouts. As for the food, the brewery offers a batch of local menus of restaurants that will deliver. Pro tip: Order something nice and spicy from Stage, located a few doors down.
- 2000 PGA Blvd. (Suite 5506, facing PGA at City Centre complex), 561-671-2337
This popular local diner serves abundantly portioned, fresh and hearty breakfast and lunch dishes.
- 2000 PGA Blvd. (Building A, Suite 3140 at City Centre complex), 561-540-2822