by Thomas Miller – Food Blogger / Restaurant Critic for Vero Vine and Vero Beach Foodie
The resort always grabs my attention as I drive past on Ocean Drive due to the unique front architecture and the waterfall. The grounds are very well maintained and quite tropical with all of the large palm trees. Their parking lot is mostly reserved for valet parking guests, but there are a few spots available that you can still self-park if you wish. As you walk through the front door, the hotel lobby is on your left. The restaurant is just a few steps away to your right and through a stone arch with only the wave logo to identify it. The hostess stand is on your right and is made up of wood, metal, and glass. As you enter the restaurant, in the middle of the dining room there is a large table surrounded by a dark chainmail wall. This is Gloria’s VIP table for her family dinners while visiting the resort, or it can be used for special events. The table can seat up to 14 guests. Once you walk past the VIP table, your attention will be drawn to the view of the pool area, the Cabana bar, and of course the Atlantic ocean. Blue accent lighting is used throughout the resort and it’s quite a spectacular view once the sun has set.
Now let’s dive right in and see what this place has to offer and what I had to eat!
The Wave is very well known for is their Ceviche, and this new variety was exceptional. Made with rock shrimp, calamari, and local white fish, fresh lime juice, red onion, cilantro, chili, and fresh passion fruit juice. Plantain chips are served alongside. The rock shrimp was the most tender I’ve ever had and all of the ingredients were beyond fresh. The citrus juices gave it a very bright and tangy flavor.
Up next was a very unique new salad on the menu that the chef took inspiration from a crudo while creating it. It’s made with baby romaine and the plate was dressed with a Green Goddess dressing. It was garnished with goat cheese, grilled corn, red onion, radishes, and cucumber. The Green Goddess dressing was made in house and quite tasty. All of the veggies were crisp and very fresh.
It’s not too often that you find octopus on a menu in Vero, so I was happy to see this new dish brought out for us to try. The chef told us the octopus and pork belly were cooked via sous vide for many hours to tenderize the proteins. They were then grilled to finish and served with kalamata olives, potatoes, fennel, tomato, and chimichurri. The octopus was the most tender I’ve ever had, the potatoes had a tangy salt and vinegar flavor, and everything worked very well together. A fabulous new addition to the menu!
The Wave always creates spectacular seafood dishes, and as a previous Vero Beach Foodie Golden Fork Top 10 Best Dishes of 2018 winner, I could not wait to dig into this one! A red snapper filet is pan-fried till golden brown and served with rock shrimp, a sautee of wild mushrooms, sweet potato puree, and a truffle butter sauce. The snapper was served with the skin on and it was pan-fried till crispy. The rock shrimp were cooked to perfection, but that sweet potato puree was OUTSTANDING! It was smooth, creamy and the chef finished it with truffle butter which is what gave it an unforgettable rich flavor!
Wednesday nights are usually steak night, so I was happy to see one of my favorite dishes served for me on a Tuesday! An 18 oz Creekstone Farms Certified Black Angus Ribeye was grilled to a perfect medium and served on a hot stone. The steak arrives still sizzling and that wonderful aroma of the protein and fat envelopes you as the waitress sets it down in front of you. Roasted potatoes and baby pearl onions are served alongside as the perfect accompaniment. A rich demi sauce is also served and has a slight sweetness to it.
We ended the evening with a Dulce De Leche Cheesecake. The plate was garnished with a rich caramel sauce, sweetened whipped cream, Pecan brittle, and strawberry as a garnish. The cheesecake was smooth, creamy and had a wonderful caramel flavor.
Although the owner’s heritage is Cuban, The Wave is more than just a “Cuban” restaurant. The majority of the dishes that are on the menu are New American with Cuban & Spanish influences. With nearly everything on the menu being made from scratch, the dishes we tasted were not only pleasing to the eye, but also to the palette. With one of the best views of the Atlantic on Ocean Drive, this is one place I highly suggest you don’t pass up because I know you won’t be disappointed!
3244 Ocean Dr, Vero Beach, FL 32963
Sunday – Thursday, 7:00 am till 10:00 pm, Friday & Saturday, 7:00 am till 12:00 am