A deluxe new European market has opened its doors downtown, bringing upscale foods, drinks, deli items, and indoor/outdoor dining.
Named after owner/developer Vladimir Fulman’s beloved mother, Mama Bella is a 75-seat, 3,750 square feet culinary emporium filled with some of the world’s finest gourmet foods, spices, and imported artisanal cuisine and ingredients. A beautiful black granite coffee/wine bar runs along the right side of the market, with generous options for coffee drinks, cocktails, and wines.
A sophisticated sleek décor of grey stone, silver cases, black chairs, and a green backlit bar wall give an upscale vibe that makes lunch a step up and dinner more worldly.
The deli cases are filled with meats, cheeses, and unusual salads like the mushroom salad that features whole large mushrooms with carrots in a vinaigrette dressing. The seafood department features whole fishes, seafood salads, and seafood knishes. This European-inspired gourmet market also has a specialty stone pizza and an alfresco patio.
“We wanted to bring something new and uniquely European to West Palm Beach,” said Vladimir Fulman. “Like our city’s diverse neighborhoods, we want to celebrate ethnic diversity in every bite at Mama Bella.”
Everything is made from scratch in the kitchen, which crafts a rotating, counter-service menu with Italian, Russian, and coastal Mediterranean cuisines. One day there may be chicken croquettes, the next day beef and mint cabbage rolls, and after that veal-and-beef meatballs.
This will be a swell place to meet for lunch or after work downtown, grabbing a variety plate with cured meats and salumi, artisan cheeses, seafood like shrimp and clams, chicken, as well as salad and soup options, homemade pasta, and sumptuous desserts.
We sampled the meat knishes, blinis made with little thin pancakes topped with sour cream, and 2 kinds of caviar – the black nutty variety and the larger orange caviar that pops in your mouth.
The Pasta Carbonara with rich melted cheese, cubes of cured pork, and black pepper paired well with a sparkling rose. Potato pancakes are crispy and flavorful with onion and sour cream dipping sauce. The Greek Salad comes with large chunks of imported feta and slices of red onion with calamata olives.
But it’s not all heart attack on a plate, there are energy smoothies and a protein-packed power breakfast, that finds fork-tender eggs Benedict, vanilla brioche French toast, and fluffy fruit-topped pancakes, bespoke omelets made to order, smoked salmon sandwiches, and a variety of Danish, muffins, and bagels.
A beautiful wine room touts over 100 national and international wines and champagnes, featuring classic and lesser-known varietals from Italy, France, Greece, Israel, and Lithuania. A large selection of to-go essentials and tasty snacks which feature a transcontinental twist, like eggplant salads, pickled vegetables, canned and tinned fish.
A welcome upscale addition to downtown, Mama Bella’s raises WPB to another level, equal to the gourmet markets found in larger cities.
If you visit, Mama Bella Gourmet Restaurant is at 518 S. Dixie Highway, West Palm Beach. Online at mamabellacafe.com
Mama Bella brings gourmet Euro market to downtown