|All photos by Table 26|
|Indulge with a Kobe foot-long hotdog, or Wagyu meatloaf, at Table 26 is West Palm Beach.|
If the dining scene on Palm Beach Island had a love child with Nantucket, it would be Table 26 in West Palm Beach.
Owners and partners Eddie Schmidt and Ozzie Medeiros opened Table 26 in May, offering locals what they describe as an upscale -- yet casual -- neighborhood eatery. Indeed, it's a place where Palm Beach's seasonal residents can indulge in the high-end service they value while rubbing elbows with some of the more colorful characters that make up nearby West Palm locals.
Named after the latitude of Palm Beach, the restaurant isn't actually on the Island, however. But it's close -- just over the Okeechobee Blvd. bridge a few blocks South of the Norton Museum of Art off Dixie Highway. A few minutes from downtown's Clematis Street, and around the corner from City Place, it's close enough to draw all types of crowds, said Schmidt.
The name is also tribute to New Yorker Medeiros' former restaurants on Nantucket Island, Lola 41 (also that Island's latitude degree), and its hipster offshoot, Lola Burger. Also from New York, Schmidt took his 13 years experience as the former maitre 'd for the Palm Beach Grill and translated into his own "sophisticated yet affordable" eatery where you can order everything from a New England-style lobster roll to a hot dog.
First and foremost, Schmidt and Medeiros think of Table 26 as a neighborhood spot, the official eatery of the Mango Promenade historical district -- one of several such districts located in the surrounding stretch of West Palm Beach that spans the city's northern end of Dixie Highway.
"We want to offer people a place to go other than City Place and downtown where they can have a more personal experience, something we've lost with corporate America. A place locals can call their own," Schmidt told Clean Plate Charlie during a recent interview. "We want Table 26 to be laid-back with a great atmosphere, while also offering superior service and high-end food."
Here, the waiter -- even the valet, which is complimentary -- will know your name, and remember it, said Schmidt. Inside, patrons are seated with a special Table 26 disc, which lets servers know the staff know the table needs to be officially greeted. Inside you'll find 3,500-square-feet of crisp white tablecloths accented with a nautical touch, from the pillowy navy blue banquettes to the custom nautical chart-painted ceiling.
The kitchen is helmed by a husband and wife team, Executive Chef Steven and Pastry Chef Joanna Polowy, who also began their career in Massachusetts, and relocated to South Florida to join Medeiros and Schmidt in their new joint venture.
The menu covers a range of global comfort foods offered through a variety of appetizers, also billed as sharing plates ($12 - $18). The beef brisket tacos served with a red chili sauce and a jalapeno corn salsa is a favorite, says Schmidt, while the calamari "Pad Thai" offers a unique twist on an old favorite with toasted peanuts and a lime and soy-ginger mayo dipping sauce.
Salads are a focus -- a nod to the staple entree-style options found across Palm Beach Island -- and cover all the bases ($12 - $27). That includes the simple but well-priced tri-color roasted beet salad, served on a bed of baby spinach and finished with toasted hazelnuts, pear and goat cheese. A more pricey option comes in the form of the creamy Italian burrata cheese and tomato salad, a standard $15 when served seul with a basil pesto and balsamic and extra virgin olive oil dressing, but made decadent with the addition of the house shredded lobster salad for $27.
Entrees cover comfort foods with an upscale twist ($14 - $32), like the Kobe foot-long hot dog and Wagyu beef meatloaf. There's also a New England favorite, a nod to New England and Nantucket, with the lobster roll, served here with a simple butter marinade on the traditional buttered brioche bun, accompanied by truffle and parmesan fries. Even the Black Angus cheeseburger, prepared with white cheddar for $14, is made extra-special -- and indulgent -- when you add foie gras for just $10 more.
Desserts are highlight all their own, everything made fresh and in-house, from the warm bread pudding with caramel sauce and rum raisin ice cream, to the s'mores sundae featuring housemade marshmallows and graham crackers ($10). An extra special treat: the "sinful" sorbet, which can be topped with flavored Stolichnaya vodka -- a good alternative to an after-dinner drink.
|A starter plate of blackened jumbo shrimp with sweet corn grits.|
|The dining room at Table 26.|
|The outdoor patio at Table 26.|
Table 26 is open Monday through Thursday from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., and 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. For more information, visit the Table 26 website
and Facebook page
, or call (561) 855-2660.
1700 S. Dixie Highway, Lake Worth, FL