Apeiro's Anthony Sitek Revamps Menu With Relatable, Affordable Plates

Since Delray Beach's Apeiro Kitchen & Bar opened in October, a lot has changed. Chef/partner David Blonsky said goodbye to the restaurant, and Delray's executive chef, Anthony Sitek, journeyed south to keep the newly opened locale up and running. Sitek oversees both locations now and has implemented a stark revamp to the midtown location's Mediterranean-inspired menu.

When it comes to Mediterranean cuisine, Sitek says the possibilities are endless, which is why he joined the team in July 2014 in Delray Beach. Now he's doing double-time, cooking more inventive dishes than he ever thought possible.

"I knew the concept had incredible potential," he says, "and the team here is just so talented and full of ideas. In just over a year, we are well into our second location. I’m excited to continue this journey and see where it takes us next."

Sitek's recent menu revamp has given him a medium to let his creative juices flow, and his enthusiasm behind each plate shows through both taste and presentation. "Chefs are innately creative people," he says, "and at Apeiro, I get to have fun with the menu and create new items that people want to eat. Not all chefs can say they have the liberty to channel that creative energy."

More than 15 new plates have one thing in common: relatability. 

"When I was redoing the menu, I wanted to add items that people could relate to," he says. "I looked into great, comfortable dishes from the Mediterranean and adapted them to the Miami culture. It was important to me that the menu was comfortable and approachable but at the same time offer something new and creative that guests might not have experienced before."
Through the additions, Sitek was given the chance to blend influences from other parts of the Mediterranean. Now on the menu is a fresh summer orecchiette that will change seasonally; bone marrow ($17) with panko, herb, and apple mostarda; falafel sliders ($12) with arugula, pickled onion, feta, and tzatziki sauce; and Moroccan-spiced chicken wings ($12) with Calabrian yogurt. He says he's experimenting with a rigatoni and a lamb amatriciana, which will be added to the menu soon.

For first-time diners, Sitek recommends ordering his two favorite plates, which have been menu staples since the restaurant opened: the grilled Spanish octopus ($18) and the Moroccan-spiced lamb ribs ($16). 
"We are really going for the comfortable, casual, yet fun experience, with a lot of vibrant energy," he says. "We want you to come here; take advantage of all the small, sharable plates; and try a few different dishes with friends. There is no better way to eat Mediterranean food than with friends — tapas-style."

Along with eats, mixology duo Sergey Borisov and Adrian Chaus launched a new selection of craft cocktails. Among the additions are the Gin My Watermelon, made with sage essence, lemon juice, aloe vera juice, and passionfruit foam; and the Speedy Gonzalez, which uses Herradura reposado, ginger liqueur, agave nectar, coffee beans, and dry hibiscus.  

Sitek, who spends most of his time in the kitchen exploring and testing, says to expect more new dishes on the menu sporadically, especially as seasons change. "Heart" is what makes Apeiro's menu, new and old, different from other neighboring restaurants, he says.

"I can truly say that my sous-chefs and I put our hearts into every dish that comes out of the kitchen," he says. "We don't treat this as a job. We truly love what we do, and I think people can feel it when they dine with us."

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