Benny's Kicks It into Sixth Gear with Weekend Paella Celebration

Chef Jeremy Hanlon and crew cement Benny's on the Beach as a destination restaurant with otherworldly paella

By Kristopher Neild,

Benny's on the Beach has been around for a while – nearly three decades, in fact.

Locals have always appreciated it as one of the only "on the ocean" restaurants in the Palm Beach/West Palm Beach vicinity, serving up great breakfast and lunch. But patrons had begun to take it for granted, seemingly lulled to sleep by the static menu and the somewhat cliche beach atmosphere. 

All that was thrown for a loop when Jeremy Hanlon, executive chef and managing partner, joined the team a little over a year ago. The focus on food and service has reinvigorated Benny's, with people swarming to the Lake Worth Pier establishment, even during the heat of summer. 

Chicken and shrimp paella – only at Benny's on the Beach — Photo courtesy of Kris Neild

Hanlon has spent a good deal of time honing his craft at top restaurants around the world. He's constantly looking to infuse the Benny's menu with bits and pieces of his international exposure. Hence the recent rollout of the weekend Paella Celebration.

(For those who read the world paella and don't know exactly what that entails, let us be of some assistance. Paella is regarded as the "Spanish National Dish," a rice-based offering that gives chefs the option to add beans, meaty proteins and a variety of spices, depending on their style.)

Benny's on the Beach traditionally is not a dinner spot, but it's quickly becoming one due to the ruckus this paella is causing.

Hanlon uses bomba rice and mixes in some chorizo and seasonings to create a spicy-but-not-too-spicy base. From there, guests can choose from the vegetable; chicken and shrimp; surf 'n' turf (includes twin lobster tails); shellfish; or chef special options.

Benny's advises that each order feeds two to three people, but that should really read "two to three extremely hungry people." The portions are huge.

Pairing the paella with a pitcher of house-blend red or white sangria is advised to help cool off the lingering spice and remind you that you're sitting on top of an actual ocean. 

The Paella Celebration can be participated in on Saturdays and Sundays. Restaurant-goers can park in the spacious Lake Worth Beach public lot and walk on over.

Upon entrance, the paellera (cooking apparatus) can be seen (and smelled) right out front, along with a live music offering at the bar.

It's advised to make reservations using OpenTable in advance to assure your party a great spot overlooking the Lake Worth Beach, pier and Atlantic Ocean.

Don't miss out on this amazing opportunity to experience top-notch paella prepared by a celebrity chef while soaking in some of the most picturesque views Palm Beach County has to offer.