Sunday, April 3, 2011

Dive Bar Restaurant in Jupiter: Tweak or thwack?

Dive Bar Restaurant
318 South U.S. Highway 1
Jupiter, Florida 33457
Open daily 11 a.m. to 1 a.m.

(Use search box at right to find restaurants by city)

It’s a mixed bag of offerings at Dive Bar Restaurant in Jupiter, the suddenly chic spot in town for those in their 30s and 40s.

Let’s start with the good.

With a large jellyfish tank taking center stage in the bar area and a gallery of televisions running sea-themed videos, Dive Bar’s visual concept smartly complements its seafood menu.  Doors on one side open to a great view of the Jupiter Yacht Club and Marina. Totally Florida.

But ... most tables are outdoors on a patio; there are only two or three tables inside. The interior is otherwise limited to bar or sushi bar seating. With an  ambitious, over-priced menu, Dive Bar’s outdoor dining won’t be popular when the weather turns ugly humid in late May and the tropical downpours begin in June. What were the owners (affiliated with the Quarter Deck, Flannigan enterprises) thinking?
The menu is large, dominated by sushi, which, what I sampled was good – not stellar. I know I have to cut a place some slack when it’s new, but the menu itself needs tweaking. Non-sushi dinner entrees run $18-29, a little pricey for a meal when seated at a bar or on a patio crowded with  drinkers. They need to take po boys off the list; with skinny hot dog-like buns and meager filling they were laughable. A hog snapper sandwich ($14), also lackluster, was drizzled with a candy-sweet citrus aioli. Thumbs down also goes to their lobster roll ($17), swimming in mayo or some kind of sauce and unattractively plated.

View from the patio
Retool the menu, pare it down (do we need five soups?), skip the upscale dinners, improve the sandwiches and they’ll have something. 

The crowd is older, more diverse, during lunch hours. Service is spotty but that’s to be expected until the dust settles – and right now there’s plenty of it, figuratively speaking. Parking is free and plentiful with valet service also available.

s: Jupiter night spot, Jupiter dining, Jupiter waterfront dining, Jupiter seafood, Jupiter restaurants,

Emeril Lagasse knows oyster po' boys; here's his recipe  

No comments: