Only three months and already it’s over for Boca Burger Bar, the terrific little burger joint that took over the old The Lodge site on South Federal Highway. It seems that excellent burgers that were a lot more inventive than those of its better-known and better-financed competitors couldn’t compensate for a tough location with difficult parking, cramped and charmless interior, and inability to crack the notoriously brutal Boca market. I’ll miss its “Gourmet Burger” with a slab of seared foie gras and jacket of molten gruyere; lettuce-tomato-onion just isn’t quite the same.
What’s in a name? The identity of the partners, that’s what. In the case of the (former) Max’s Grille set to debut at the now-under-construction Delray Marketplace west of the turnpike, that would be Burt Rapoport and Dennis Max. So the new name of the eatery, which will reprise a few of the original Max’s most-popular recipes and feature current Henry’s chef Adam Brown heading up the kitchen, will be Burt & Max’s. Just so you know.
The curse continues. . . Or so it seems for the bottom-floor space at the corner of East Atlantic and NE Third Avenues that’s currently home to SpoonFed. After a disastrous run as Atlantic Ocean Club that saw original chef Jamie DeRosa bail only weeks after opening, longtime local toque Glen Manfra took over and turned in a successful few months as The Pop-Up, which morphed into SpoonFed. Well, now Manfra is gone from the restaurant, having lasted a mere three months. Aside from that, however, I’m told very little will change. The name, hours and all that remain the same. The owners are currently seeking a new exec chef, who will likely put his or her own stamp on the menu, which will probably become a bit less Italian but won’t deviate from its modern American comfort food orientation. I’ll let you know when a new toque is in town.