NOTE: This restaurant has since closed.
I just had my first taste of City Place in West Palm Beach and it was quite the entertaining and delicious experience! I was a guest at a friend’s work holiday party held at Taverna Opa which, if you like Greek food and a fun atmosphere, you must check out! Although it was quiet when we first got there, after 7:30 there wasn’t a dull moment to be had for the rest of the night. The music was loud and made you want to get up and dance with the belly dancer who shimmied and shook all over the restaurant pulling diners out of their seats to join her on the floor. Every couple of minutes, waiters threw napkins in the area and yelled Opa! Hundreds of napkins were strewn all over the tables and floor by the time we left. I wonder how many packages of napkins they go through in a night…
Since we were a big party, our food was served family style, with lots of different options to choose. I liked this because it gave me a chance to try a lot of different things from their menu. As with all Greek restaurants, the first item brought out was a plate of warm toasted pita bread and homemade hummus. The hummus was delicious, with big chunks of chickpeas and a very light garlic taste. A Greek salad and a plate of traditional Greek dipping sauces were brought out next, including Melitzanosalata (eggplant), Tzatziki sauce (garlic yogurt) and Taramosalata (caviar). The plate had Kalamata Olives and Stuffed Grape Leaves, as well. Everyone dug right into the dips before knowing what each one was. Discovering that I had been eating caviar was shocking since I never would have thought I’d actually like it!
Next up was a crispy calamari and Spanakopita, a phyllo-dough pastry filled with a spinach and feta cheese mixture. A Cheese Saganaki was served too, but only after it was set on fire and flamed right before our eyes. This was my least favorite of all the appetizers; it was way too salty for my palate but the spectacle of watching the dish as it was served was fun.
For the entree, a platter of Wood Frilled Lamb Chops, Oak Grilled Pork Loins, and Chicken and Beef Tenderloin kebobs with onions and peppers, served alongside a rice pilaf, roasted potatoes, and sautéed vegetables. As you know, I don’t eat beef or pork but I did have the chicken and lamb. I have only eaten lamb once before when I was in Israel and really enjoyed it. This time around was just as good. It was moist and tender, as was the chicken. The potatoes and vegetables were seasoned just right and every bite was delicious. Dessert was a platter of various traditional Greek pastries that were gone before we knew it.
I liked the family-style serving; I left the restaurant feeling completely satisfied with my meal and not too stuffed. I got to try a little of everything and a get a real feel for the food served at the restaurant. Taverna Opa is definitely a hot spot for an entertaining dining experience, and City Place is a really cool area to spend your night. There are tons of other restaurants, bars and shops you can check out while you’re in the area. I’m really looking forward to my next visit there.