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Fresh First
Gluten-Free Restaurant
Today 8AM–3PM
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1637 SE 17th St Fort Lauderdale, FL 33316
1637 Southeast 17th StreetUSFloridaFort Lauderdale33316
(954) 763-3344freshfirst.com
Gluten-Free Restaurant, Bakery
Gluten-Free Restaurant
Bakery
Breakfast Restaurant
Health Food Restaurant
Juice Shop
Takeout Restaurant
Organic Restaurant
Restaurant
Vegan Restaurant
Vegetarian Restaurant
Today 8AM–3PM
Monday 8AM–3PMTuesday 8AM–3PMWednesday 8AM–3PMThursday 8AM–3PMFriday 8AM–3PMSaturday 8AM–3PMSunday Closed
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Review Summary
4.3
40 reviews
5 star
27 reviews
4 star
6 reviews
3 star
1 review
2 star
4 reviews
1 star
2 reviews
Relaxed eatery dishes up a range of organic, gluten-free breakfast & lunch fare, smoothies & juices.- Google
"Hands down the best fresh food and service!"
"Loved the French press coffee and blue berry pancakes."
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Fort Lauderdale Magazine's profile photo
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Richard Clement
a month ago
We are visiting from Texas and were looking for somewhere we could get real nutritious food. Fresh First was PERFECT!! The good was awesome and the staff and owners were very friendly and helpful. We decided to do a 3 day raw food cleanse and Eliana gave us all the information and worked with our busy schedule to get our meals at a convenient time for us. We highly recommend checking this place out of you care about the food you put in your body. AMAZING!!!
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kev money
a month ago
Awesome menu, great service, wonderful atmosphere. The owner was extremely helpful and delightful! Must go; I HIGHLY recommend. To the people talking about how this restaurant is preachy and doesn't have usual menu items that you would find in a "normal" restaurant, just don't come here. If you're not interested in having organic, non-GMO food, go eat at a chain restaurant. Don't rate this amazing place with one or two stars because you didn't know what it was. Do some research before you go out. This place is unique and that is what makes it five stars. The people in there making the food actually care about you. Not just trying to take your money. So if the price is a little higher, so be it. You can't put a price on the love that goes into the food here. Being newly vegan, I would like to thank the owners and apologize for the "sheep" who don't appreciate the love and effort you've put into this place. Don't change anything!
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Teresa Curry
2 months ago
Hands down the best fresh food and service! Have eaten here multiple times when I'm in town! I look forward to it! Never had a bad meal!
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Sutirtha Bagchi
5 months ago
I was (am) staying at the adjoining Renaissance Hotel and I needed a quick bite for lunch and came in here earlier today. Once I was seated and had looked at their menu, I did have the urge to get up and leave but (a) it would have been impolite and (b) I didn't have enough time on my hands to go elsewhere, be seated, and finish my lunch on time so I decided to stick it out here at this place. And to some extent, my initial reservations about this place were confirmed during my meal. My main issue with the restaurant and its offerings was that it seemed to be talking to only health freaks and "tree huggers" - not regular individuals like myself. I do like (OK, make that LOVE) seafood and Florida isn't short of good seafood, so even if this place were nothing more than a regular soup & sandwich shop, I would have loved to have something like a shrimp po-boy or a fried fish filet sandwich. But none of those choices exist on the menu and so of all the available options, I went with the tuna melt sandwich. With a sandwich I would personally have preferred to get fries but alas, that option did not exist too; the only options available were either slaw or salad or a cup of soup. And that did not please my hungry soul or its desire to have fries along with a sandwich. Coming to the food itself, the sandwich was accurately described on the menu as tuna salad topped with cheddar cheese and served open-faced on waffle bread. Now while it is OK to read that description on a menu, I still was a bit surprised by the look of it because well when you picture a sandwich in your head, I can bet that it doesn't look anything like the tuna melt sandwich that I was served. And as far as the taste goes, it was unremarkable - nothing to be upset about but nothing to wow my taste buds either. The service was unremarkable too. During a quick lunch one doesn't expect to engage in a ton of conversation with one's server, but my impressions were that the servers I came in touch with were perhaps just a tad less friendlier than the median server at a median restaurant. Maybe it was the case that I was not falling in love with their non-GMO, gluten-free, peanut-free hype and they could tell that from my face. Lastly, if all of this had come at a somewhat lower price - say somewhere in the neighborhood of $8 - 9, I would have considered awarding the place a 3-star. But then for a small-ish portion size, served in a pretty bare-bones restaurant that is located towards the end of an obscure shopping plaza, and just past a parking garage, a price of $11.75 for the food did feel slightly on the higher side. All in all, I view the place as having a limited menu that looks and feels too preachy for a price that's perhaps 10-15% higher than where I would like it to be. Don't get me wrong - I also like food that is minimally processed, locally grown, etc. and have seen from personal experience at least in some instances that such food tastes better than the alternatives, but I don't need a place to be preachy and create in me the feeling that I don't belong there.
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Response from the owner - 4 months ago
Dear Mr. Bagchi, Thank you for your comments as we love to hear all different points of view. We actually feel even more unique after your reviews (tripadvisor, on yelp, on google, and other apps) because Fresh First was created to be unique and healthy. We feel that you are able to find a quick and cheap fried bite any corner you go here in South Florida. Once you came in and realized that our menu was too healthy, organic, non-gmo, gluten free among other things, you could have asked us where you could find a quick fried fish sandwich with fries close by and we would be happy to help you, no hard feelings :). We believe we can make a difference in this planet and we will never serve certain items such as fried food. All our dishes are made from scratch at our restaurant, including the bread, burgers, mayo, hot sauce and sodas. We were speechless the first time a family of 5 came here with so many allergies and different restrictions and told us that here is the only place they can all sit down and eat together as a family. We created our restaurant to provide healthy and gluten-free food to our community where people with different food restrictions (Celiac, Vegan, Vegetarian, Allergic, or regular Health conscious person) can enjoy food together. We are sorry that you did not understand our concept and prefer to label us as "Tree Huggers", which we don't mind as we do care of lot for the planet we live and the planet we will leave for our children. We also are proud to purchase the best quality ingredients for our restaurant because you can taste the difference. We are aware that good quality food with certain labels and certifications are not cheap; and people should actually question if a certain dish is too cheap. We will review your perceptions with our staff so they can understand different guests' needs as far as service so we can improve on that. Anyway, we wanted to thank you once again for confirming our uniqueness and we wish you the very best. Regards, Tarso
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Laura Mino
2 weeks ago
Pros: Easy to find vegetarian and vegan options that are different from the standard "alternative" meals you find at most restaurants. Good diversity on the menu, good atmosphere, open kitchen. Conscious-friendly food (or so they say, at least) with the customary price mark-up such products demand. Cons: Too pretentious for their own good. They don't serve commercial sodas, for example, and advertise that a juice cleanse can cure everything from athlete's foot to brain cancer. Neutral: They're not equipped for large groups (I went with a group of 10) so steer away from there if you're with lots of friends. Everyone that we interacted with on the staff was completely out of their element with our big boisterous party. It was impossible to hear one another, even had a hard time conversing with the guy sitting next to me, because the restaurant is all tile floors and glass walls - very echo-y. Not an issue if you're in a small group or by yourself. I had the quinoa burger which was pretty meh. There were too many conflicting flavors, like they thought, "Let's shove as many vegetables into this patty as we can" with no regard for how the flavors of those veggies would interact. Bit disappointing for $10. Others in my party were satisfied with their meals, though. The savory bun and waffle bread are unique and worthwhile. In summary: I probably wouldn't choose to go here again, but I'm not mad that I went today.
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Response from the owner - a week ago
Dear Laura, Thank you for dining at our restaurant and for your comments. We always like to learn different points of view and learn what we can improve on. We feel that "commercial" sodas are easy to find in every corner and because they are full of sugar, corn syrup and other ingredients that we can't pronounce, we decided to have only organic sodas that are made with 4 natural ingredients, fresh juices, smoothies, etc. In addition, we got a little confused when you mentioned that we "advertise that a juice cleanse can cure everything from athlete's foot to brain cancer"... If that was true, wouldn't be so great? Our tabletop tent simply says: "Give the give of health" and lists the food we provide with it. We are not sure where you got that idea since I am the only one who talks in details about the raw vegan cleanse, I can't recall meeting you to discuss it. If we met to talk about that, we will never say that we can cure anything. We are, however, big believers that we are in a society full of diseases partly because the way we eat. Nowadays it is easy to get more information about food, nutrition and items that our body doesn't process well everywhere, even on google. We agree with you about our size... We are a small restaurant cafe with only 14 2-top tables plus the counter seats so we encourage people to make reservations for 6 or more people so we may have the tables ready and accommodate big parties. The day you and your guests came, we were 100% full with a line at the door so we appreciate you waiting a few minutes so we could put tables together. Having said that, we know that having a small restaurant that is full becomes very noisy with everybody talking. Regarding our Quinoa Burger (quinoa patty served with sautéed mushrooms, onions and mozzarella on a homemade bun) you could have asked your server to either remove some of the items to make a plain burger or if you didn't like it, they are trained to offer you another dish with no hard feelings and no charge because at the end of the day we want to make sure people are happy with their selection. Thank you again for your note and we wish you well. Best regards, Eliana & Tarso
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Jennifer Helfer
4 months ago
Although a gluten free place they also offer a handful of vegan options including (but not limited to) a yummy tofu scramble, waffles, and warm chocolate chip cookies. They also have a variety of juices made fresh when ordered. Owner is super nice and makes an effort to know her customers. Decent amount of seating, but does fill up.
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Lennis Cook Live
a month ago
First time here, the owner came out to make sure we were enjoying our food. All the options we tried were delicious. Laid back place with amazingly tasty healthy food
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Darrel Newman
a month ago
Friendly staff, Food and juices were perfect. Place looks clean and organized. We will be back.

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Breakfast is supposedly the most important meal of the day. Dinner -- and the accompanying wine -- is for relieving...
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At the age of 32, Mary Siragusa got sick. Her doctors recommended she see a specialist immediately. Already a believer in the power of whole foods — as a teenager, she served sprouted grain san...
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As an adult, life seems to be consumed by an endless stream of responsibility and minor annoyances. You have bills...
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Fresh First

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The New Times Broward-Palm Beach 2014 award for Best Gluten-Free Eats in Fort Lauderdale and Palm Beach goes to Fresh First.
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In this episode of Dish In Dish Out, brought to you by the Foodable WebTV Network, Barbara visits Fresh First — the first 100% gluten-free and organic restaurant in Fort Lauderdale, Florida — for breakfast. As the age-old adage goes, breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but  it is often difficult to find healthy options while dining out. Watch the full episode as Barbara navigates Fresh First’s breakfast menu and teaches v...
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A gluten-free diet may be the latest food fad to some; for others it's required eating to stay out of a doctor's office or hospital. For both groups it's often equated with deprivation of tasty foods. Not so at Fresh First, a small café off the 17th Street Causeway, which touts itself as “South ...
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