Now in its 24th year, the Palace was the first and only gay "dining theater" on Ocean Drive. Famous for weekend drag shows, Sunday "Brun-chic" ($31.95), and a side bar packed with handsome, buff guys, it's also a place where you can catch some of the best "mimicking-lip-syncing" entertainers anywhere and -- as if all of that were not enough -- really nice meals.
On any evening, the queens, as expected, take command of the street by strutting, coaxing, and teasing curious passersby to sit at one of the outdoor tables for the next few hours. While dining and drinking, you can expect to be awed by their performances. The show attracts touristy crowds that gather to stare and, in many cases, gawk at the drag shows that take place right outside on the improvised stage. The "ladies" put on topnotch acts while spectators, dine, drink, sing along, and become part of the hottest party on the Beach.
Chef Earnest Walton overses preparations for approximately 700 meals per week. Originally from Georgia, the chef has mastered the fusion of Asian cuisine and American comfort food. Prior to joining the Palace, Walton worked at Sodexo Catering and Saki Japan Fusion Grill.
Enjoy a three-course, Tuesday-night meal for the amazing price of $19.95 per person, which includes a glass of wine and a professional, over-the-top show that will knock your socks off and have you wondering, Where have the ladies hidden big Jim and the twins?
I knew the show would be unforgettable but was not prepared for such a tasty meal. The chicken Cordon Bleu was stuffed with bits of ham and melted Swiss enveloped in béchamel and served with a hefty portion of mashed potatoes topped with thick gravy and sautéed vegetables.
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I shared my veggies with Hannah Sentenac, a strict vegetarian and fellow blogger who was seated at our table, and she said, "I love the crunchiness of the small, whole carrots. They're barely cooked with just a light hint of garlic. The broccoli is just as crunchy, which is the way it's supposed to be, and very fresh, not limp and overcooked, which unfortunately is the way many restaurants tend to serve it. And my potatoes are delicious."
The T-bone steak was tender, juicy, and accompanied by roasted potatoes and slightly grilled asparagus -- simple and fresh. Curried shrimp pasta was also surprisingly good with linguine that was cooked slightly past al dente and served with fresh, medium-size shrimps. The fourth dish available on "Make some noise Tuesdays" was either a salmon or tilapia dinner prepared with penne vodka and a side of garlic bread. Warm peach cobbler à la mode made its way to our table as a delightful end-of-the-evening dessert. There is a full bar available. Every night is party time at the Palace.
Check out palacesouthbeach.com for all of the crazy-fun events that take place each day of the week.