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The Cooper Restaurant stands out boldly on PGA Boulevard

Rustic and urban nuances warm The Cooper Restaurant.
Rustic and urban nuances warm The Cooper Restaurant.
Courtesy of The Cooper Restaurant's website.

The Cooper Restaurant

Rating:
Star4
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Star
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Yawn, another restaurant on PGA in Palm Beach Gardens. You walk in and -- wait a minute, something different.

Welcome to The Cooper Restaurant, a truly original stop on PGA's tired old stomping grounds. What's different are what you see and what you get.

Walking in, an atmosphere of the rustic and the urban create comfort and spaciousness. My wife commented that the beamed ceilings, lodge-like lighting and leather booths transport you to Chicago or Seattle. This is a breath of fresh air on PGA, a strip that longs for something decidedly non-West Palm. With easy-going, economical competion, like The Yardhouse and Cabo Flats only a few minutes east at The Gardens Mall, The Cooper is well-positioned for the long haul.

A clean, well-lighted place...
The Cooper Restaurant at 4610 PGA Boulevard
Reservations recommended: (561) 622-0032

Wait staff seemed a bit stretched. But once we had our's attention, thankfully, the waiter was unscripted and knew his menus.

We didn't know it was happy hour. Ordering drinks, he brought it to our attention since the hour was coming to a close. The bar menu includes craft beers and cocktails with witty names like, "The Last Word's Ode to Equal Proportions."

To start, the ham and cheese a la plancha and a slider came to our high top swiftly. The charcuterie was generous for the price. The waiter's recommendation of doubling up on a truffle-infused cheese was a home run. The slider was fine, not mind-blowing and might benefit from a more original bun, even if that were pretzel bread.

We spent about two hours, and as if we were in a Milwaukee tavern or Boston pub, friendly strangers at neighboring tables dropped in on conversations. That homespun feeling is uncommon to West Palm Beach. And it is what makes The Cooper a "clean, well-lighted place."

If you plan on dinner, be sure to call ahead for reservations: (561) 622-0032.