Once named “the most fun small town in America” by USA Today, Delray Beach is an enchanting village with big-city suaveness. It offers a two-mile stretch of pristine beach, which is just a few minutes away from a variety of great cafes, restaurants and bars. In fact this lovely spot has a fantastic cafe culture, which is exactly why we wanted to share with you our favorite restaurants in Delray Beach.
There is also a thriving arts and music scene in Delray Beach. For example, every Friday from October to May there’s a “First Friday Art Walk”, as well as a self-guided Delray Beach art trail.
At Old School Square you can catch cabaret performances by Broadway stars, and see leading-edge contemporary art exhibits at the Cornell Art Museum. There’s live music on in several of the eateries we mention below too.
So come and enjoy beautiful art, music and an amazing gastro-community. Below is our list of top eateries and ‘watering holes’ where you can experience the best Delray Beach has on offer.
We’re not going to give you every eatery that is out there (like some websites that say ‘best’ but include every restaurant in the area!), but instead share with you our five favorite Delray Beach restaurants, our four favorite cafes, and then five favorite bars. So you have a choice for whatever mood you’re in. Buen Provecho! (Related: Fort Lauderdale or Miami).
The Five Best Restaurants in Delray Beach
1. 50 Ocean
Experience fine dining with breathtaking panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean. High class with warm hints of old Florida, 50 Ocean is the perfect setting for any sort of occasion. It overlooks the beach from its second level which has floor-to-ceiling windows.
Open, bright yet intimate, 50 Ocean’s atmosphere is relaxing and inviting. The food is American fare with a concentration on seafood.
The ingredients are sourced locally whenever possible, and they acquire fresh products and promote the sustainability of hormone-free meats. Their spirit choices are excellent too, and the restaurant is enhanced with a huge wine choice.
While the food certainly makes it one of the best Delray Beach restaurants on the water, it’s also one of our favorites for the beach view alone.
Wandering our World recommends: The crispy belly clams served with an apple fennel slaw and roasted garlic aioli; the spicy tuna tartare with avocado, a chili white-soy vinaigrette and mango; and their decadent Turtle S’mores dark chocolate tart with toasted marshmallow ice cream, candied pecans, and salted caramel.
2. Cabana Nuevo Latino
Delray Beach’s best restaurant for Latin food! Cabana Nuevo Latino is a friendly restaurant and bar, with a fun festive ambiance, complemented by bright neon lights and tapestries hanging from the walls.
At Cabana they say you aren’t a customer, but a guest. The staff are friendly and helpful, and they prioritise delivering top service all around.
Their menu is full of delicious classic Latin recipes with subtle modern twists which enhances each flavor profile. With a dine-in menu, cocktail menu and take-out menu, there are quality options for whatever mood you’re in.
Wandering our World recommends: The flavorful Coco Cabana, which is their signature habanero curry and coconut milk reduction, cooked with broccoli, calabaza, carrots, Peruvian purple potatoes, spinach, yautia, and yuca, served with either marinated jumbo shrimp or chicken breast.
3. Cut 432
This restaurant is a contemporary take on the American steakhouse, but with an elegant air. Their meat is purchased from the country’s most skilled ranchers, so you know you’re getting prime quality beef.
The simple industrial-like decor (albeit with chandeliers) complements the straightforward menu which offers every succulent cut of meat, as well as seafood, salads and burgers. It’s simple done right (which isn’t always easy to do), and that’s why Cut 432 makes our list of the best restaurants in Delray Beach.
Wandering our World recommends: The dry-aged Delmonico paired with Cut 432’s steak sauce and a side of the flavor-packed parmesan truffle fries. End it with a baked apple margarita and a piece of banana cream pie. Delicious.
Located in the historical area of Delray Beach, housed in the gorgeous ‘Tarrimore House’ circa 1924, this local provides a unique, unconventional experience. Expect typical and classic American fare, but done with a twist. This is our favorite brunch spot in the region, which is why it had to make our list of best restaurants in Delray Beach.
The revolving artwork displayed on its walls, together with the eclectic interior, provide a creative atmosphere for food and thought alike. Independent local artists are invited to style the walls of each room, as well as the lovely outdoors dining area and garden, where there’s weekly night entertainment such as open mic, comedy, and poetry.
Wandering our World recommends: The crab cake benedict with 2 soft poached eggs, asparagus, and English muffins is a must from the brunch menu, along with their amazing bottomless mimosas and bloody Mary’s.
5. The Grove
Since opening in 2012, The Grove has served seasonal-based soulful cuisine. The restaurant’s aesthetic leans toward modern-minimalist, which creates a comfortable, intimate atmosphere.
Whether you eat in their atmospheric dining room, have a few cocktails in the bar, or enjoy your food on the patio, The Grove tends to leave a lasting impression on anyone who passes through.
Wandering our World recommends: The Tuna and Foie, sliced thin raw Ahi atop seared foie gras with chives and lemon zest; their fresh Ricotta Gnudi, house-made pasta covered with a creamy cheese and pepper sauce and topped with bottarga- cured mullet roe salty bits.
However keep in mind that The Grove’s menu changes frequently, so our recommendations won’t always be available. Come with an adventurous appetite and enjoy!
The Four Best Cafes in Delray Beach
1. Bamboo Fire Cafe
This small husband and wife owned business, has a comfortable and homey ambiance featuring superb Caribbean cuisine, but also Asian, and Indian influenced dishes. If you want extra spice, just ask them!
The owners treat every guest as family, and frequently create samples and appetizers just so they can share them around the ‘house.’ This cafe has a great friendly atmosphere and such wonderful dishes that it’s now a big local favorite.
Wandering our World recommends: The Oxtail pepper pot with dark gravy made with cinnamon, brown sugar and cassareep; their Caribbean spiced jerk chicken; and their vegetarian lo mein slightly stir fried with veggies and sauce.
2. Cafe Luna Rosa
What started out as a Gelateria and paninoteca has transformed into an award-winning restaurant and cafe right on the oceanfront. Enjoy the fresh taste of elegant Italian cuisine alongside delicious seafood with the sound of the waves and a great view of the ocean.
Led by a team of Italian chefs, their menu provides a wonderful selection of chicken, veal, seafood and homemade pasta options, as well as an impressive wine list of Italian and American selections. The cafe portion offers in-house pastries and bread, and roast their own coffee beans. Easily one of the best cafes and restaurants in Delray Beach.
Wandering our World recommends: From the brunch menu try the coconut-crusted French toast with bananas, strawberries, macadamia nuts and Nutella; or the smoked salmon toast Benedict with hollandaise and poached eggs, garnished with diced plum tomatoes, fried caper and goat cheese.
From the dinner menu order the Fusilli shrimp pesto Genovese made with freshly made pesto sauce, sun-dried tomatoes, a touch of cream and juicy golf shrimp.
3. Colombian Coffee House
Authentic Colombian gourmet food and coffee, from three cousins with a dream. All coffee beans come directly from South America’s Colombia, guarantying aromatic, exquisite coffee with nuance-rich flavors. Pair the coffee with their Colombian cuisine and you have the perfect brunch or lunch spot.
Located in the center of downtown Delray Beach, this hole-in-the-wall boutique coffee shop is the perfect local to add to your morning routine thanks to their gourmet Colombian food and superb coffee.
Wandering our World recommends: The Colombian Style breakfast that consists of scrambled eggs with sauté onions and tomatoes and your choice of arepa (Gluten-free corn tortilla) topped with Colombian queso.
The Colombian pastries are second-to-none too, especially when paired with nice, strong coffee. The empanada, pandebono, guava and cheese pastries, and arepa de chocolo are but a few of their delicious pastry options.
4. ETC Cafe and Gifts
This gourmet coffee shop located in the Seagate Hotel comes with a 2700-square-foot gift shop with a mix of luxurious gifts and beach memorabilia. Daily, the baristas prepare freshly brewed organic coffee and baked pastries that can be served along with tasty deli sandwiches, salads and oversized cookies to take as a snack to the beach.
The gift shop, on the other hand, offers a great variety of items such as whimsical hats, purses, beach towels, cook books, beach toys and much more. This is one of our favourite cafes in Delray Beach to drop in and grab things to go!
Wandering our World recommends: Their caffe macchiato and taco chai tea latte, paired with the amazing coffee cake, moist English muffin, hearty bacon-eggs-cheese wrap or the decadent cinnamon roll.
The breakfast smoothie is a must-try with low-fat vanilla yogurt, apple juice, bananas, blackberries, blueberries, strawberries and granola.
The Five Best Bars in Delray Beach
1. Park Tavern
One of the most intriguing bars in Delray Beach, Park Tavern has a refined ambiance with numerous food and beverage choices that go well above expectations.
They make everything on their menu in house – the bread, condiments, cured meats and more – all of which are sourced locally from the area’s outstanding farmers, ranchers and fishermen.
They also pay serious image to wine and spirits, with over 150 different selections of wines by the bottle, and an extensive collection of crafted cocktails. Choose one of their high quality bourbons or scotch, or enjoy a crafted drink with seasonal ingredients, offered by glass or pitcher.
Wandering our World recommends: The barbecue octopus with ginger soy vinaigrette, tatsoi salad and crispy rice crackers; the PT cheesesteak with prime shaven rib, jalapeño, fontina cheese, caramelized onions and forest mushrooms.
As for cocktails, the Fall Apple Smash is a dark and flavorful drink made with aquafaba, Elijah Craig rye, honey crisp apple and cinnamon. For a lighter tone try their Mango Mule which is made with fresh mango, lime, ginger beer and Tito’s vodka.
2. Saltwater Brewery
This great local microbrewery has a tasting room and onsite beer garden. The casual yet elevated atmosphere is perfect for personal and business. Each unique custom beer is inspired by the sea, using natural ingredients to create each unique beer flavor.
Wandering our World recommends: Trying out any of the beers that they produce in-house! Some of our favorites include the stout Nitro Sea Cow, the fruity Mango Locale, and the sour Crimson Current.
This beach waterfront bar has become an iconic hot spot for locals and visitors alike. Enjoy great cocktails from their tropical tiki bar with your toes in the sand, or come once the sun goes down for a more high-energy nightclub vibe. They provide private parties, VIP bottle service, and have performing DJs.
This has to be one of the funnest and best bars and Delray Beach restaurants on the water.
Wandering our World recommends: The Mahi Mahi sandwich grilled with aioli, bibb lettuce, brioche bread, caramelized red onions, key lime and pineapple chutney. Pair it with a draft beer or one of their tiki cocktails like the cuban punch or the rock-a-rita!
4. Tin Roof
Something is always happening at the Tin Roof! The weeknights feature acoustic tones by local and regional touring acts so you get to enjoy live music while you dine or drink. Weekends can be even rowdier, with some of the best bands and DJs in the state performing until last call.
On Sundays, once a month, they have themed brunches too. Their menu is made up of Southern-inspired classic dishes made from scratch. “Better than bar food” is their motto and we couldn’t agree more.
Wandering our World recommends: The chicken tiger tacos made with cotija cheese, cream and chipotle-braised chicken; the south x southwest quesadilla with oven-roasted tomatoes, avocado, jack cheese, pulled chicken and bbq sauce.
Take advantage of their late-night happy hour to enjoy any of their domestic bottle and draft selections of beer, as well as wines and white claws.
5. Death or Glory Bar
Women-owned and dog-friendly, this bar is known for housing the largest rum collection in the region. This popular local offers freshly made craft cocktails, tiki drinks, beer and wine.
The menu features modern American fare and changes with the season’s fresh products and provides plenty of options for gluten-free diets, vegetarians and vegans. And it’s all located in one of Delray Beach’s most beautiful and historic buildings.
Wandering our World recommends: The pig wings with pineapple bbq sauce and potato salad; char-siu cauliflower street noodles with strip fried veggies, char-siu cauliflower, baby bok choy and rice noodles; and the white chocolate cranberry pudding.