East End Eats on Las Olas Boulevard in Fort Lauderdale: New Spot for Breakfast and Lunch

Categories: First Bites
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Melissa McCart
Though the weather may be sultry, the lobster bisque (served very hot) at East End Eats -- which opened 11 days ago -- is worth a detour. Stocked with loads of Maine lobster claw, the soup is so decadent that Vice President Joe Biden asked for quarts to take home.

East End Eats' owner J.P. Ottino says that he knows Biden as
"a personal friend -- it's not political" and that Biden stopped by Ottino's home during a recent visit to the area. Ottino served him the bisque as a first course (and gave him a goody bag). 

Made with seafood stock and cream, dressed with a dash of cayenne, sherry, and a pinch of chopped scallions, the bisque is a recipe of chef Megan Pelloquin, whom Ottino plucked from New Orleans.

Pelloquin has drawn up a menu featuring muffins ($3.50), breakfast sandwiches (under $5), omelets (under $8) soups ($4.50 to $8), salads ($5 to $20), wraps ($6.50 to $9), sandwiches ($7 to $9), and a handful of specialties such as shrimp and grits ($10), empanadas (two for $8), lobster mac and cheese ($15), and a quiche of the day ($7).
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Melissa McCart

I loved the crusty half-loaf served with the bisque.  Pelloquin and Flanagan bake it in-house, along with all breads and muffins sold at East End Eats. I wasn't as enamored of the empanadas. Though the crust was flaky and buttery, the Argentine ground sirloin is seasoned "with Island spices" that didn't offer enough kick or complexity. And, like the soup, these come out hotter than hell. Give yourself a minute before taking a bite.

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Melissa McCart
Cakes, pies, and tarts are courtesy of Dominique Beckers, a former cake decorator for the Oprah-endorsed We Take the Cake -- whose special-order cakes and pies will be offered beginning today. (Try the Key lime tart.)

Having retired last year as a developer of Corporate Amenities LLC, Ottino was intrigued by the potential of the location when the family that owned Barbara Young Bake Shop shut its doors.

"We've needed a takeout place like this one in the Las Olas area for a long time," said the Fort Lauderdale native. "Something that offers healthy meals with an emphasis on fresh for people on vacation who may not want to cook or who may be coming from the beach."

Ottino's logo is of three clocks, pegged at 8 a.m., five till noon, and 4 p.m. -- to reinforce to-go meals of breakfast, lunch, and after-beach snacks. Check out the collection of 25 actual clocks in the bathroom.

Though the emphasis at East End Eats is on takeout, the café offers a handful of tables framed by old-timey Fort Lauderdale photos, an open kitchen, spiffed-up deli cases, and a checkerboard floor.
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Melissa McCart

Ottino said he wanted to open now, in the offseason, "to work out the kinks, to refine what we'll do, and to get a feel for the clientele."

If they're anything like Ottino's house guest, East End Eats will do just fine.

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Location Info

East End Eats

1523 E. Las Olas Blvd., Fort Lauderdale, FL

Category: Restaurant


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9 comments
Williamyakel954
Williamyakel954

I have lived here in South Florida for the past 21 years and I have noticed that most of the eating establishments here in South Florida serve "Something they call "FOOD" and when you taste what most Restaurants and Cafes and Eateries are serving around here you can definitely tell that everything taste like "TV DINNERS" but not at "EAST END EATS" and believe me I know because I had the opportunity to go and check out what is was to actually get the chance to eat "Real Good Food made by Real Good People" when I visited "East End Eats." My 2 Chicken Breast Wraps that I had ordered that day were so delicious that I regretted not buying 2 more for a later snack for that evening. And their staff were so pleasant that I thought I was eating at an upscale Cafe on Worth Avenue in Palm Beach County. I applaud the fine owner of this incredible Restaurant/Cafe because now the people of Las Olas will have a place to flock to when it comes to pleasing their Upper and Lower Palates!!!!! In this consumers opinion I give this Establishment a " 5 Star Rating" in all categories ranging from "Cleanliness" and "Great Tasting Food with Freshness" and "Superb Customer Service that is 2nd to none". Bravo East End Eats Bravo!!!!!!!!!

William Yakel
William Yakel

I have been driving past this Eating establishment for the past 2 weeks and finally decided to see just how good the FOOD in this place really was because discovering GOOD FOOD to me is an adventure indeed and I was not disapppointed in the least. Their service and staff was extremely helpful and their establishment was surgically clean and their bathrooms were well manicured too. Windows of this eatery were very clean and so were their glass shelves that their food sat upon. I found their prices to be quite fair too. All in all I would definitely bring my Hearty appetite back to this well put together"Culinary Smithsonian" and make sure you say Hi to Richard in the back because he has pair of hands that can whip up any sort of Culinary Delight!!!! I would highly recommend all of my friends and even strangers to this well configurated and Professionally maintained Establishment. It is about time that Las Olas received a FRESH BREATH of REAL FOOD to it demographics!!!!! 5 Stars!!!!!!!!!!

Zzz
Zzz

wait a sec... Barbara Young Bakery is GONE? 

Loot101
Loot101

Thanks for sharing. I was wondering about that place. The lobster bisque looks delish. 

Farid
Farid

Do you really base your conclusion on biden's opinion? Why do I want an 800 calorie lunch? Why would I go to this place rather than ETEN or gran forno?

Archie Speng
Archie Speng

that's an interesting slogan-"The second biggest douchebag in the world loves our soup!"  I'm sure it will be a smashing success

Barry
Barry

This is just sad. Why buss someone in from DC to write stuff that's just as bad as everyone else?

MelissaMcCart
MelissaMcCart

Hi, Farid. As much as I like the rosemary bread over at Gran Forno, on the whole, the bread at East End Eats is better. I still have to head to ETEN. And no, I didn't base my opinion on the VP and my eating habits weren't dictated by politicians when I actually lived in DC. I didn't know the Biden story until after I had lunched. The bisque is quite good, quite fresh, and quite basic. There are lots of options that are less caloric and super healthy. I just ended up knocking out a day's worth of calories in a fell swoop on my visit. 

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