Recently, we were invited to check out Juniper on the Water in Hallandale Beach. Not one to pass up a free meal, I gladly accepted. It is a bit challenging to find the restaurant, as the location inside The Hemispheres condo complex is odd. But that is where the weirdness ended.
As we pulled in and I buzzed the security guard to let us in, we made our way past the apartment buildings to the restaurant, which offers complimentary valet parking. I knew the restaurant was on the Intracoastal but had no other details. The large, airy, Northeastern-cottage-feeling space was a pleasant surprise. It was warm and inviting.
There is a large outdoor deck overlooking the water, but in July we opt to eat indoors as often as possible. I’ll be back in January to experience the outside seating (and unlimited mimosa brunch). We both enjoyed the view as perused the well thought out menu choices. Starters are on the pricey side ($10 -16 each) but offer an array of options from basic salads like Greek or Caesar to salmon tartare, pork belly and several seafood choices.
We started with the Middleneck clams, steamed in a broth of white wine, onions, and parsley pesto. It was incredibly flavorful and different from most other shellfish preparations. Even FKGuy, usually anti-bread, had to stop and soak up some of the goodness. (The rest of the bread, which was good on its own, and even better dredged in broth, I finished with no problem.)
Entrée choices include several fish and seafood options, as well as a popular lamb shank, steaks, a burger and chicken. It may surprise you that I didn’t order the lamb shank, but as I had made those over the weekend (and they were superb), I was ready to try something new. We tried the prawns a la plancha appetizer portion, along with the house specialty, paella. It was a lot of food.
Two large, head-on prawns, are perfectly grilled and served with a romesco sauce. Don’t let the head-on be a deterrent from ordering, as they are easy to decapitate. Juniper’s paella comes in a giant (for one person) pan, with couscous and an array of tasty seafood. Getting each component cooked properly can be a challenge, yet they managed to get it exactly right.
Bottom line: the food is excellent, the decor is lovely, the scenic views are calming, and the service is good. What more could a person want?
You’ll find Juniper on the Water in The Hemispheres condominium complex at 1975 S. Ocean Drive in Hallandale and is open for dinner daily and brunch on Sundays.
Disclaimer: Juniper on the Water invited me in for dinner at no cost to me. Of course, we tipped our server. All opinions in this blog are expressly my honest thoughts. If the food sucked, I would let you know that too.