I have been driving past Boca for several weeks, in the old “Smoke” space on Platt St. Happy to see “Smoke” evaporate(you can find that review here, too), I was looking forward to a new look, AND, a much better menu.
I made reservations for lunch, and was joined by my favorite “foodie” friend, which is always an epicurean adventure of multiple courses! Thankfully, they have enclosed the outdoor patio, so the space itself is much roomier AND air conditioned. We were promptly greeted by Erika, who, truly, ranks among the “rock stars” of wait staff. She was beyond attentive and, by the time we got to dessert, I think she was “reading our minds”. More on that later…
We decided to share one of the Flatbreads as a first course, and my friend wanted one with the Burrata Cheese, so we ordered the So-Cal…Spicy Tomato Jam, Tomato, Burrata Cheese and Basil Pesto. The toppings were absolutely the freshest, but the crust was a little tough and it needed some salt. No salt, or pepper, on the table, is one of my pet peeves, but Erika promptly brought us some fresh sea salt and pepper. ** Note to all restaurants**…please put salt and pepper on the table!
Our Entrees were the Steak & Egg Salad, and one of the day’s specials, an Oyster PoBoy with Homemade Chips.
I like my steak to “moo” and my eggs to “cheep”, or they are too well done. I am very specific when I place an order and the kitchen delivered the dish perfectly…Grilled Flank Steak, Grilled Radiccio and Frisee Greens with a fresh fried egg and a blue cheese crumble vinaigrette, all done with the appropriate “rareness”. It was fabulous…and HUGE!
Not a fan of Oysters, I had to trust my friend when she showered praise on her PoBoy, especially the house-baked Ciabbata bread and fresh horseradish on the side. Now, really full, but what’s a food review without dessert, right? In deciding to “share”, we were discussing our options in front of Erika and had narrowed it to Hot Chocolate Truffle “Bon Bons” with Strawberry Fields Cream or The Homage to Ybor…a red apple cobbler with dolce de Leche Ice Cream, Nutella Ganache and smoke Coconut Crumb. We never actually “told” Erika what our choice was, but she overheard me discuss my aversion to Strawberry(and only Strawberry) Ice Cream and placed our order for the Homage to Ybor. Great service!
Upon exiting, we were greeted by the chef, Chad McColgin, who took our “flatbread” critique very well and we chatted about our enjoyable dining experience. We left with a basket of assorted, locally grown tomatoes, as Boca Kitchen Bar is also a “market” for some local produce and unique products made in-house.
I can’t wait to head back to Boca for dinner!