chef allenIn celebration of National Grilled Cheese Month, James Beard Award-Winning chef Allen Susser will host a special cooking class at Whole Foods Market – Coral Gables on Tuesday, April 16, 2013, beginning at 7:00 p.m.

Having recently opened the Daily Melt in The Shops at Midtown Miami, chef Allen will showcase his love for all things cheese with  white truffle butter grilled cheese sandwich; watermelon radishes, arugula, Heirloom tomatoes and goat cheese salad; Maine lobster mac and cheese; and rustic-style apple, honey, almond & brie salad. This event is free and open to the public. Whole Foods Market – Coral Gables, 6701 Red Road in Coral Gables.   (305) 421-9421

Daily Melt – Midtown, located on Buena Vista Avenue in The Shops at Midtown Miami, is open seven days a week, from 10 a.m. – 10 p.m. Telephone: (305) 573-0101.

maxs harvest panseared scallopsMax’s Harvest, Dennis Max’s farm to fork restaurant,  has a number of new entrees on the menu that make use of farm fresh organic items. “In addition, we’ve just begun composting our scrap produce and providing the compost to Farmer Jay of Farmer Jay’s Organics in Delray Beach,” Pete Stampone, Harvest’s manager said.

New dishes on the menu include pan seared diver scallops with forbidden black rice, toasted cashews and green beans with a Vietnamese scented aioli ($19/$35); Palmetto Creek Farms pork chop with sweet corn sformato, braised collard greens with house smoked hocks, baby carrots and green tomato jam ($36) and a 13 ounce “Seminole Pride” NY strip with a roasted tomato tarte tatin, arugula and cress salad with crispy onions and mustard peppercorn butter ($39).

For dessert: a banana cream pie— locally grown namwah bananas custard layered with bananas foster, molasses cookie crumble and a brulee vanilla custard topped with whipped cream and served with molasses cookies on the side.

maxs harvest banana cream pieMax’s Harvest,  Pineapple Grove in Delray Beach,   at 169 Northeast 2nd Avenue Delray Beach, FL, FL 33444. 561-381-9970.


max 10 lunchMax’s Grille is now offering a lunch special for $10, Monday through Friday from 11:00 a.m. until 5 p.m. through the summer. 

Lunch includes a choice of one of the following:  kettle chips, a cup of soup, a house or Caesar salad, with a choice of half an ahi tuna salad sandwich in a pita pocket with red onion and arugula; a flatbread Margheritta; half a shrimp salad pita with bibb lettuce , sliced beefsteak tomato and lemon-caper aioli; half a roast beef sandwich on multi-grain bread with cheddar, red onion, arugula and horseradish aioli; half a turkey Santa Fe wrap with chipotle ranch, avocado, lettuce tomato and bacon; half a chicken salad sandwich on toasted multi-grain bread with sliced tomato and bibb lettuce; half a  shrimp salad pita with bibb lettuce, sliced beefsteak tomato, and lemon caper aioli; a BLT quesadilla with bacon, spinach, tomato, goat cheese and poblano crema.

Max’s Grille is located in Mizner Park at 404 Plaza Real, Boca Raton.  For more information please visit or call 561-368-0080.

california pizza


 Through June, California Pizza Kitchen offers two new seasonal menu items – Spicy Korean Barbecue Pizza topped with charred Korean barbecue poke, slivered scallions, sesame seeds and mozzarella cheese  with spicy kimchee salad  ($13.50) and Spring Market Vegetable Salad:  field greens, purple kale, spring peas, Granny Smith apples, red radishes, cider plumped raisins, toasted pecans, fresh dill and mint, tossed in house-made Greek yogurt vinaigrette ($9.75) – available in all restaurants .

David Bracha, chef/owner of Oak Tavern is now serving brunch on Sundays from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

The à la carte menu begins with cocktails ($9-$10) like the brunch classics: Tito’s handmade Bloody Marys, Mimosas and Peach Bellinis, and progresses to the Spiked Arnold Palmer (Oak Tavern’s lemon-thyme infused vodka), the Green Mile (green chile, cilantro, cucumber, lime and gin), Coconut Mojito, Aperol Spritz , Modelo Michelada, Pimm’s Cup and Watermelon Caipirinha.

The menu offers sharing-style dishes ($4 to $18) from The Basic (two eggs & toast) and the “Shakshuka” a Middle eastern dish featuring wood oven baked eggs, tomato stew,  and sheep’s milk feta, with grilled bread to mop it all up with, to  jumbo lumb bluecrab fingerling potato hash  topped with two fried eggs, spinach and beet relish;  Shrimp & grits with maple bacon, poached egg and tomato-chile gravy; coconut-crusted French toast topped with maple butter and mixed berries and Blueberry pancakes with vanilla-orange butter and maple whipped cream.  House-made breads and biscuits are served with house-made charcuterie, a selection of cheeses and a raw bar with iced oysters, oyster shooters  and a seafood platter with stone crabs, oysters, clams, cocktail shrimp and ceviche (Market price).

“Brunch is my favorite meal.  It’s essentially social and fun.  This menu has a lot of options and I’m hoping there’s something for everyone,” says Bracha.

Oak Tavern is open for lunch Monday through Friday and seven nights for dinner. Brunch is served on Sundays from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. 35 NE 40th Street in Miami’s Design District; 786-391-1818;

Beginning April 3,
and every Wednesday from 7pm - 11pm, Terrazza at Shore Club  offers a Wine Down Wednesdays three course dinner special ($30) with a half-off bottle of wine.

The three course menu includes appetizers, entrees and desserts such as Burrata Caprese, Spicy Pollo Mattone and Crispy Skin Salmon Fillet with Asparagus, followed by an after dinner  2 for 1 specialty cocktails at Skybar. Terrazza at Shore Club, 1901 Collins Avenue,  Miami Beach, FL 33139

To celebrate Spring Irish-style, Fadó Irish Pub is offering a new $4 a plate Happy hour menu with a variety of $5 drinks and cocktails like the dark, light Guinness Stout beer and The Pickleback - a shot of Bushmills Irish Whiskey with a pickle brine chaser. The small plate menu includes thick cut or thin cut chips with 4 sauces; Fadó Thick Cut Chips topped with pulled lamb and peppercorn sauce (this is the Irish version of the Canadian Poutine); Harp Battered Fish Tacos;  Stuffed Cheese Puffs with jalapeño jack cheese filling;  Slow Roasted Pork Belly with a Magners cider reduction, and Harp Lager Mac & Cheese baked with Irish bacon, garden peas and a parmesan breadcrumb topping.

Click here for full review

Fadó Irish Pub, Mary Brickell Village, 900 S. Miami Ave,  Miami, FL 33130,  786-924-0972




WPBT2 is celebrating the 500th anniversary of Ponce De Leon arriving in Florida  by taking viewers on a historical culinary journey  around the state. The documentary  ¡Buen Provecho! Florida’s Spanish Flavor premiering Sunday, June 30 at 7:00 p.m.  will be hosted by James Beard award-winning chef and restaurateur, Michelle Bernstein.

The one hour documentary explores Florida’s Spanish roots through its cuisine, while blending historical narrative with delicious recipes and vibrant locations including St. Augustine, Ybor City/Tampa, Key West, Miami/Little Havana



The 2013 Diners’ Choice Awards  for Top 100 Hot Spot Restaurants in the United States reflect the combined opinions of more than 5 million reviews submitted by verified OpenTable diners for more than 15,000 restaurants in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

These awards reflect the combined opinions of more than 5 million reviews submitted by verified , OpenTable (NASDAQ: OPEN)  diners for more than 15,000 restaurants in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. The list of winners represents the best of the best when it comes to restaurants that are hip, daring and eclectic.

Spanning across 21 states, California topped the list, taking 26 places on the list of winners.  Florida follows with 18 winning restaurants.  Specifically, Miami is very well represented, alongside Fort Lauderdale, Tampa, Winter park, Oviedo, Delray Beach, West Palm Beach and Palm Beach, as follows:

  • Bâoli Miami – Miami Beach
  • Buccan – Palm Beach
  • Buddha Sky Bar – Delray Beach
  • Juvia - Miami
  • Rocco's Tacos & Tequila Bar - Fort Lauderdale
  • Rocco's Tacos and Tequila Bar – West Palm Beach
  • STK - Miami
  • SUGARCANE raw bar grill – Miami
  • SUSHISAMBA dromo – Miami Beach
  • The Bazaar by José Andrés at SLS Hotel South
  • Wynwood Kitchen and Bar - Miami
  • Yardbird Southern Table & Bar – Miami Beach
  • YOLO – Fort Lauderdale
  • Zuma Japanese Restaurant - Miami
  • Fly Bar and Restaurant – Tampa
  • Grille One Sixteen – Tampa
  • Prato – Winter Park
  • Sushi POP - Oviedo

The complete list of 2013 Diners’ Choice Award Winners for Top 100 Hot Spot Restaurants in the U.S. may also be viewed at


Wednesday, March 20, 2013 – Last night, SUSHISAMBA® Miami Beach Sous Chef, Cara Thompson, took home the grand prize on Chopped, the Food Network’s popular reality based cooking show in which four chefs compete against each other, taking a mystery basket of ingredients and turning them into dishes that are judged on their creativity, presentation, and taste. Judges, Amanda Freitag, Marc Murphy and Alex Guarnaschelli proclaimed Thompson the winner of last night’s episode titled “Redemption Intention,” and awarded her the grand prize of $10,000.

To celebrate the airing of last night’s episode, SUSHISAMBA Miami Beach hosted a screening and offered a special menu, inspired by the ingredients Thompson worked with on the show. Dishes included Kuromitsu Chicken – enoki mushroom, pickled sea cucumber, soy paper; Pork Terrine – Peruvian corn, sriracha gel, smoked pineapple sea salt, chicharones; and Mamaye Sorbet – peanut crumble, anise catupiry crema, sugared squash blossoms.

For more information on the show, visit

SUSHISAMBA Miami Beach is located at 600 Lincoln Road on Miami Beach. Telephone: (305) 673-5337


From March 1 to April 30,   Ra Sushi is offering prix fixe Spring Pairings: a Lobster Seduction Salad —large chunks of lobster in a spicy sauce artfully set in a cucumber ring and garnished with strawberries and cucumber Yuzu sauce — , with a Berry Encumbered Refresher — a cocktail with  Effen Cucumber Vodka, Absolut Citron, Cointreau, fresh muddled cucumber, strawberry and lime, shaken, strained over ice and then topped with a splash of soda. $20 for the combo or $12 for the Lobster Seduction Salad and $8 for the Berry Encumbered Refresher, separately at any RA Sushi South Florida location. For more information, visit

terryTerry Zarikian, a well-beloved figure in South Florida for over three decades of gracious and stylish PR for restaurants and hotels, and renowned for putting China Grill Management in the news as Director of Product Development for China Grill Management properties worldwide, has joined Rockaway PR, a culinary lifestyle agency with offices in Miami, Orlando and New York as Director of New Business & Development. “Terry joining the team is a major milestone for our PR, marketing and special events agency,” said Alexis Knapp, Principal, Rockaway PR.

Zarikian who was instrumental in the early development of South Beach Wine & Food Festival under Festival Director and Founder, Lee Brian Schrager, remains as the festival’s Culinary Advisor.  He is also the Food Editor of Selecta Magazine, a Latin lifestyle publication, and continues as Director of Product Development at China Grill Management.

“Having someone with his creativity and experience as part of the team will only help leverage the brand’s culinary expertise and complement initiatives put forth for existing and future clients,” concluded Rockaway’s Jaylan Ochoa

Rockaway PR’s Miami office is located at 8101 Biscayne Boulevard, Suite 304 in Miami, FL. 305.751.9641.



Chef de Cuisine Christina Coupet, has revamped the casual but stylish Mediterranean menu at the La Côte oceanfront  pool deck restaurant by adding a French Riviera twist to her new dishes. 

The new dinner menu lists starters such as Steamed Mussels & Clams with pancetta, fresh herbs and spiced citrus broth as well as the Seafood Platter – an array of king crab legs, oysters, chilled prawns, cherrystone clams, and tuna escabeche. Under appetizers and salads there’s Foie gras with poached pears and carrot foam; Octopus confit salad with citrus dressing, fennel, watermelon and Escargot with baby Portobello, brie and garlic sauce. The menu continues with pastas like Fava bean agnolotti with fontina cheese and celery root puree and Pappardelle with short rib ragù and pecorino Romano cheese.  Full Plate options include Butter poached lobster tail with leeks, pommes maxim, and red beet essence; Pan roasted striped bass in artichoke puree and parsley oil; and Grilled whole turbot fillet with grilled fennel and oregano vinaigrette.

New lunch additions: Conch ceviche in a citrus marinade topped with crisp plantains; chicken wings with coriander, pepper and tzatziki; as well as salads and sandwiches like the lobster roll made with poached Maine lobster, celery, green onion, herb dressing and dill potato chips.  And for desserts  warm chocolate canelle; coconut crème caramel tropical fruit soup and homemade Nutella beignets with chocolate marshmallows.

La Côte is open daily for cocktails, lunch and early dinner from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily; Happy Hour from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday; and cocktails, lunch and dinner from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday through Saturday.  (305) 674-4710. La Côte at Fontainebleau Miami Beach is located poolside next to the Ocean Lawn at 4441 Collins Avenue, on Miami Beach, FL 33140.


chef david ritz palm beachChef David Sears has been appointed chef de cuisine of Temple Orange at the beachside Ritz-Carlton property in Palm Beach, Florida. The winning chef-testant on the Food Channel’s reality show, Chef Wanted with Anne Burrell, David opted to bring his expertise and creativity to re-energize Temple Orange at The Ritz-Carlton, Palm Beach, instead of taking the grand prize of Executive Chef for the NYC restaurant Zengo

Chef David is a graduate of Johnson and Wales in North Miami, Fla. who also studied Business Management and Aerospace Engineering at Georgia Tech in Atlanta, Ga. He began as personal chef for the former mayor of West Palm Beach before he started his own catering company.  Chef David took his talents to The Ritz-Carlton, Key Biscayne from 2001 – 2004, as garde manger sous chef and was part of the opening team for The Ritz-Carlton, South Beach and Coconut Grove properties. He became garde manger chef for the Mandarin Oriental, Washington D.C. and was promoted to chef de cuisine of Café MoZu which became one the “Top 50 Restaurants in Washington D.C. and “One of the Hottest Restaurants in the World.”

In 2006 - 2009, Chef David garnered accolades from Conde Nast Traveler and Destination Living magazines for his work at the Ginn Reunion Resorts on Orlando, Fla., as chef de cuisine for all their restaurants and for opening The Grande Hotel signature restaurant concept for all 14 Ginn Resorts. As executive sous chef at Terranea Resorts and Hotel in Rancho Palos Verde, California he managed a $50 million food and beverage budget  and returned to his native Florida in 2010  as part of the opening team for the newly established Waldorf-Astoria, Orlando,    as executive chef for the Bull and Bear Restaurant for which he garnered countless awards and accolades including the 2012 Orlando Sentinel Foodie Awards Critics’ choice: Best Steakhouse; 2011 Orlando Sentinel Foodie Awards Readers’ Choice Best Hotel Restaurant; 2011 Silver Spoon Reader’s Choice Awards, Best Steakhouse, Best Service, Best Desserts, Best Fine Dining.

“Chef David’s unparalleled enthusiasm and commitment to delivering an unforgettable dining experience is exactly what makes him the ideal talent to re-energize the Temple Orange vision,” said Michael King, general manager of The Ritz-Carlton, Palm Beach. Temple Orange  561-540-4924



Twin chefs Nicola and Fabrizio Carro of Quattro Gastronomia Italiana, have revamped the menu at Sosta (Meaning “quick stop” in Italian), their Lincoln Road’s indoor/outdoor casual eatery known for thin crusted pizzas and farm fresh salads and added a Happy Hour and HEAT Gameday specials.

New on the menu:  a selection of freshly-baked sandwiches – crispy oven-baked pizza dough stuffed with an array of tasty Northern Italian delights, like The Sorrento with roasted eggplant layered with fresh tomatoes, buffalo mozzarella, roasted red peppers and fresh basil; The Cotto Parma  with tomato, Swiss cheese and a mayonnaise-whole grain mustard spread; or The Chefs’ Sandwich  with thinly-sliced grilled chicken breast topped with sweet and spicy chipotle onions and crispy prosciutto.  All sandwiches are $11 and served with a side salad or French fries.

The new  Happy Hour and HEAT Gameday specials are offered Monday through Friday, from 3pm – 7pm, Happy Hour features $4 bottled beer; $5 wine by the glass and housemade sangria $3/glass, $14/pitcher.  In addition, guests can also enjoy discounted salads and appetizers ($3-$8) such as le polpete dí manzo -house meatballs in a tomato sauce, pizzas and pastas ($7-$8).  On game day HEAT fans will have Diavola Pizza pie and a Peroni for $12 while  watch the game on two large HD screens .

Sosta is open for lunch and dinner daily from noon - midnight.   1025 Lincoln Road, South Beach 305-722-5454,



Fontainebleau Miami Beach has promoted John Rogers to Director of Food and Beverage — from Assistant Director of Food & Beverage—, and appointed John Riccardo as the new Director of Signature Dining. With more than 20 years of restaurant and hospitality experience, Riccardo brings with him a reputation for being highly effective in developing long term guest relationships.

Fontainebleau Miami Beach is located at 4441 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach. (305) 538-2000.


Mandarin Oriental, Miami, Azul restaurant and The Spa at Mandarin Oriental, Miami have received the prestigious Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star Award for 2013, making the hotel one of only six properties in the United States and the only hotel in Florida to earn the highly coveted triple Five Stars. The Spa has earned the Five-Star designation for five consecutive years. . “This award is a direct reflection of the dedication, commitment, enthusiasm, teamwork and outstanding service delivered by each and every colleague at Mandarin Oriental, Miami,” said Vice President and General Manager Jorge Gonzalez.

Forbes describes Five-Star recipients as “the finest establishments in the world, delivering guests an experience beyond their expectations.”  The revered travel guide has provided ratings since 1958 and annually reviews more than 500 hotels.  For 2013, only 35 spas, 28 restaurants and 76 hotels received the coveted Five-Star rating.

cake 2
The successful husband and wife team, Colombian born, Carolina Montoya and Mexican born, Fernando Puga, owners of Unique Designer’s Cake, are launching their first Unique Designer’s Cake showroom bakery, mid-March, in Park Place by The Bay, 69 NW 9th Street, Downtown  Miami, FL. 33136 
There, you will find from "a tower of handbags that defy the laws of gravity, to a three- dimensional jeep driven by animals,” says Carolina. This versatile space has been developed not only as a showroom, but also as an event event space where the couple will teach participants to create and decorate their favorite desserts.
Unique Designer’s Cakes design starts with the client’s ideas, feelings, favorite colors and photographs. Their emphasis on details and precision stems from their architectural backgrounds which enables them to create edible scale models of buildings, cars, fashion and more.  
Unique Designer’s Cake is located at 69 NW 9th Street, Downtown Miami.  786. 351. 4276.


With its new Eat Late menu, available nightly after 10pm,  with edibles to satisfy after-hour cravings, Yard House* kicks it into high gear:  the lights get lower, the music gets louder, and the restaurant becomes a lot more communal as guests belly up to the bar, pile into one of Yard House’s ample-size booths, or stake claim to one of the high-top tables for four.

The Yard House’s new Eat Late menu, inspired by the affordable, urban street food movement, includes  Black Truffle Cheeseburger  ($7.95), Pastrami Dog ($6.75)- a beef hot dog topped with thin slices of pastrami, yellow horseradish mustard and fried green cabbage drizzled with malt vinegar; Chilaquiles ($5.85) topped with jack cheese, sour cream, guacamole, tomatillo sauce and a fried egg, or Monte Cristo Pops  ($6.35) Ham, turkey and Swiss cheese mini sandwiches deep-fried and dusted with powdered sugar and served with a jalapeno peach syrup

Eat Late items can be paired with one of Yard House’s 100-250 beers on tap, new crafted cocktails inspired by classic concoctions, Fresh & Skinny cocktails weighing in at 170 calories or less, one of the many wines by the bottle or glass, or Yard House’s signature green iced-tea.

*Yard House, 43 locations in 16 states, including California, Nevada, Arizona, Colorado, Georgia, Texas, Virginia, New York, Massachusetts, North Carolina, Ohio, Florida, Hawaii,  Washington, Illinois and Kansas.


Dolce Italian at the newly renovated Gale South Beach has launched Aperitivo Happy Hour with two for one beers or specialty cocktails — from Aperol Spritz or Original Negroni to spicy Raspberry Collins   or an Artichoke Sour — and is serving a daily three course Sunset Prix Fixe dinner menu crafted by Italian-born chef Paolo Dorigato priced at $29 per person, exclusive of tax and gratuity, both from  6 to 7:30 pm.

Dolce Italian at the Gale South Beach, at 1690 Collins Avenue; ;   786-975-2550.

Starting today and every Thursday, Red, the Steakhouse in Boca Raton is hosting Ladies Night.

Ladies will enjoy unlimited free cocktails & select wines at Red's bar starting at 4:30 p.m. until close. No strings attached.   Red's menu will be available to guests to select some of Executive Chef Peter Vauthy's signature dishes including his lobster mac & cheese and Certified Prime Angus beef steaks.

Red, the Steakhouse- Boca Raton,1901 N. Military Trail  Boca Raton, FL 561.353.9139

Food & Wine Talk Radio

Achile Sassoli, Director of Gelato World Tour
and Gelato Artisans:
James Coleridge, Vancouver, B.C., Canada
Abdelrahman Al Teneji, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates
Matthew Lee, Austin, Texas
Ahmed Abdullatif, Kingdom of Bahrain
Stefano Versace, Miami, Florida
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The House of Mandela Wines from South Africa


Chef Scott Conant: Scarpetta


Mark Schatzker, author of The Dorito Effect, The Surprising New Truth About Food and Flavor


Elizabeth Minchilli, author of  Eating Rome: Living the Good Life in the Eternal City.  


James Beard Award-winning wine journalist Lyn Farmer on: Garnacha from Carinena; the next great wine


Cindy Hutson,chef/owner, Ortanique and Zest, author of From the Tip of My Tongue


Lidia Batianich, celebrity chef, TV host, author and restaurateur 






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