A new waterfront rooftop restaurant is opening today in Fort Lauderdale.
Olive & Sea, a Mediterranean restaurant located on the Intracoastal, opens its doors to the public on Thursday, August 3, located at 1881 SE 17th Street.
The latest addition to the Broward County culinary scene, Olive & Sea delivers a menu as vibrant in color as it is bold in taste in a welcoming, lively setting situated on the water just northwest of the famed 17th Street Causeway bridge.
Elevated above the Intracoastal, the rooftop concept brings the outside indoors.
Pulling inspiration from Fort Lauderdale’s welcoming beaches, glistening waters, and enhancement of the marina lifestyle, Olive & Sea combines natural décor of sandy colors with pops of vibrant and lush colors. Tangible accents reminiscent of the yacht-life, woven rope light fixtures, marine-grade rope materials integrated into the seating, wood-look porcelain floors inspired by finishes found in luxury sailboats and plush, top-deck-worthy communal lounge seating welcomes guests to relax amid the marine charm and revel in the mesmerizing pace of the Intracoastal waterway.
Handpicked embellishments would be an understatement, as Olive & Sea wows guests with a custom hand painted mural, art and sculptures throughout the venue. The wall mural by artist Ernesto Kunde in the main dining room features oversized, bright green palms creating a tropical oasis for diners, enhanced by hanging greenery from warm-wood ceiling hatching. While the sand pattern installation at the hostess stand by Vadim Vasenin, and one-of-a-kind rope sculpture by Anita Shane at the lobby elevator immediately puts guests in a yacht-life mind set.
The restaurant boasts 156 indoor and outdoor waterfront seats, including a 14-seat bar with polished brass details, for cocktail sipping, set against floor to ceiling windows for ideal yacht-watching. The bar is a welcoming centerpiece with the heart of the restaurant. Plush booths, various table arrangements adaptable to any size party, and a long communal wood high-top welcomes guests to take in the views from a comfortable seat.
For those that prefer a foodie-scene in real time guests can take in the culinary sights of the open kitchen and aromas of the mosaic-tiled-brick oven as made to order pitas and laffa pizza are prepared.
Matching the experiential décor of sight and scent, Olive & Sea has curated a masterful playlist starting the day with relaxed Riviera-style lounge music that evolves into a classic beachside, yacht rock vibe taking guests from sunrise to sundown and beyond.
And what about the food? An inspired menu by chef Miguel Toro Franco is infused with soulful, bright, fresh flavors of the Eastern Mediterranean that excite the palate, while thoughtful and colorful plating elevate the taste experience with every dish. A variety of carefully blended spices by La Boite in New York City along with locally sourced ingredients create a vivid flavor profile throughout the menu.
The lunch and dinner begin traditionally with a selection of Dips, Mezzes, and breads including freshly prepared hummus and baba ghanoush, Moroccan Carrots, and Pita and Manoushe, locally sourced from the family owned and operated Pita Pan Bakery. Other Mezze starters, salads and appetizers include an Olive & Sea take on the traditional toasted-pita salad, Fatoush including heirloom tomatoes from Harpke Family Farms; a vibrant Hamachi Crudo with mint, fennel, and chiles; the addictive Fried Halloumi bites, and Charred Octopus with saffron labneh; and the Sweet Pea and Quinoa Falafel with Tahini and Israeli salad, coriander sauce and pita begin the taste exploration.
Flavorful main plates like the Whole Branzino Al Ha’esh with charred onion, couscous and smoked orange butter; Chicken Schnitzel with red pepper relish, Israeli salad and Za’atar Fries; Freekeh Stuffed Cabbage with tahini and carrot salad, satisfy the most discerning palates. While other large plates of succulent skewers like Fennel Dusted Swordfish, Shawarma Spiced Filet Mignon, Za’atar Spiced-Chicken, and Lamb Meatballs all served with traditional sauces continue the flavor journey complemented by the hearty warmth of brick oven baked Laffa Flatbreads of Halloumi Cheese with charred tomato and arugula, and a rotating selection of seasonal pizzas.
Other large plates include Local Snapper, and a Shawarma-spiced Burger with charred tomato, feta spread, and grilled onions on a challah roll. The dinner menu also features a range of sides such as Roasted Cauliflower with burnt honey and walnuts; Israeli Couscous with roasted tomato, charred peppers, and coriander; Sumac Spiced Sweet Potato Fries, and Hand-Cut Steak Fries seasoned with za‘atar.
Embracing the family-style meals so prevalent in Eastern Mediterranean cuisine, Olive & Sea offers a Village Table Menu with sharable features including all the spreads and mezze, freshly prepared pita and other breads, skewers and sauces, as well as three sides.
Whether enjoying a lively happy hour bar-side or a libation during dinner, Olive & Sea offers a wide variety of carefully crafted fusion cocktails combining Middle Eastern inspired flavors with fresh ingredients, vibrant flavor profiles and vivid colors.
The Red Sea, served in a red wine glass with Aperol, Assyrtiko wine, pink grapefruit, sparkling water and an orange slice offers a refreshing burst of citrus and subtle hint of bubbles perfect for a sun-soaked, waterside afternoon. Taking the traditional Mediterranean Amba sauce to a cheers-worthy cocktail is a featured drink by the very same name –the Amba is served in an old-fashioned glass with London dry gin, Amaro Montenegro, mango puree, fresh lime juice, one egg white and topped with toasted black sesame seeds. As a digestif, or for liquor lovers looking for a pick-me-up the Olive & Sea Espresso Martini is a supreme choice made with in-house, properly brewed Turkish Coffee, Liquor 43ginger liquor, Ketel One Vodka and topped with toasted coffee beans.
The extensive craft cocktail list is balanced with a sommelier curated wine list, all perfectly pairable with any of the Olive & Sea signature dishes, or to be enjoyed on their own.
Happy hour offers guests half-off select house cocktails, wines by the glass, and beer, plus nightly drink specials. Happy hour will be offered Monday through Friday 3 to 6 p.m., with live music every Thursday.
And what about brunch? The Olive & Sea weekend brunch program will launch on Labor Day weekend. Brunch will serve up thoughtful drink features like a Rosé Spritz Bar; a gourmet Per'la Coffee program featuring locally roasted grounds from Miami, FL; brunch-inspired drinks specials; and crafted daytime cocktails. Plus, guests will enjoy a menu of brunch classics with a middle eastern twist, interactive dining stations, and rotating pizza and fresh breads with spreads. All set to an energetic vibe with live music and waterfront views, the Olive & Sea Brunch will be a must-sea.
Olive & Sea is open seven days a week, serving lunch from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.; happy hour Tuesday through Saturday from 3 to 6 p.m., and dinner service from 5 to 10 p.m. For reservations, call 954-527-6716, or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Complimentary valet parking is available. For more information visit oliveandseaftl.com.