When Chef Dean James Max parted ways with 3030 Ocean, the restaurant he had created at the Harbor Beach Marriott Resort & Spa in Ft. Lauderdale fourteen years ago,  he named  chef  Jeremy Ford as the restaurant’s chef – a post that was occupied by Paula Da Silva for 9 years, before she became executive chef at  1500 Degrees at the Eden Roc.

Now chef Paula DaSilva has left 1500 Degrees, along with scores of employees, and is returning to her “alma-mater” on August 1, as executive chef of 3030 Ocean at the Harbor Beach Marriott Resort & Spa in Fort Lauderdale.  "I think it's pretty cool to come back and to take the restaurant into a different direction later this year" said Chef DaSilva when we asked her about her plans.  "The restaurant is still functioning though," she said,  and Jeremy Ford remains chef-de-cuisine at 3030 Ocean.

Looking forward to scrumptious dining!  3030 Ocean, Harbor Beach Marriott Resort & Spa, 3030 Holiday Dr.,  Ft. Lauderdale

Chef Bernie Matz's LA Cafe has closed after three years on Alton Road, and  Swedish-born Tommy Sjöö and his daughter Jessica Sjöö of the Pravda Group have closed Barock Miami, their first restaurant in the US at 1412 Ocean Drive, which they had opened earlier this year. Speaking of ways to lose money…..

Kung Fu Kitchen & Sushi's  owners Nathan Lieberman, Chef Daniel Diaz and the newly appointed Chef de Cuisine, Pablo Fueguel, bring to Collins Avenue a contemporary twist on Asian gastronomy with a Korean BBQ + Sushi concept - the first-of-its-kind in Miami Beach .

kf grilled short rib_sweet potato_asian slawThe menu has been revamped to Seoul Food and now offers a variety of meat and seafood dishes prepared with house-made authentic traditional Korean sauces and seasonings with herbs such as Thai basil, lemongrass, rosemary, mint and Chinese spinach, among others, grown outside on the Catalina Hotel hotel premises.  “Instead of ‘Farm to Table,’ we’ve made the restaurant the farm!” says Nathan Lieberman.

In addition to a vast sushi menu that offers options from the traditional to the creative, the menu begins with hot or cold appetizers such as Miso Eggplant $5; Tempura Rock Shrimp  $10; Taipei Turkey Meatballs with Tangsuyuk red pepper sauce $8; Spicy Tuna on Crispy Rice $15; Tuna & Avocado in crispy wontons and carrot ginger $16; and Yellowtail Sashimi (with szechuan pepper ponzu) $17.  Salads ($8 to $10) range from Kung Fu Salad (mixed garden lettuces, grape, tomatoes, bean sprouts, snap peas, cucumbers, toasted peanuts and peanut dressing) and Seaweed Salad with apple noodles and  sesame lime dressing  to Asian Kale Ceasar. The diner’s choice of Seoul Food – i.e. Beef Short Rib ($16); Fresh Salmon Filet ($15); Baby Back Ribs ($17); Jumbo Shrimp ($16); Skirt Steak ($18) and Half BBQ Chicken ($16) − is glazed with Bulgogi BBQ sauce, and served with sweet potato fries, Asian slaw and banchan.

kf roasted pork ramen noodle bowlBahn Mi Sandwiches served on a fresh baked French baguette, with Asian slaw and a side of sweet potato fries include Dirty South Pulled Pork (Korean BBQ meets Ssamjang chili sauce, house picked cucumbers and carrots, homemade kimchi) $12; Grilled Bulgogi Prawn (cilantro lime aioli, radish sprouts, pickled carrots and daikon, fresh cilantro and scallions) $14 and Tapei Turkey Meatball (Tangsuyuk red pepper sauce, beans sprouts and pickled vegetables) $12. Then there’s “The best Chinese Buns on The Beach”  ($9 to $12) : Galbi Short Rib (Ssamjang chili sauce, crispy shallots, homemade pickles); Pulled Herb Chicken (Ssamjang chili sauce, homemade pickles and carrots); Ssam Pulled Pork (Korean BBQ sauce, homemade pickles, fresh herbs); Crispy Fish (cilantro lime oil, homemade pickles, kimchi tartar sauce) and Soft Shell Crispy Crab (house made spicy mayo, radish sprouts and fresh herbs).

This is a Korean restaurant so the menu goes on and on so you will want to come back for Thai Tacos ($12 - $ 14) served as three corn or whole wheat, crispy or soft tacos with a side of banchan listing Fresh Ahi Tuna (creamy chili dressing, tempura flakes, fresh avocado, Asian slaw and a crispy shell); Deng Shim Gui Grilled Steak (Ssamjang chili sauce, Asian slaw pickled vegetables, fresh sprouts); Gabli Short Rib (Ssamjang chili sauce, kimchi, shaved red onion, fresh herbs) and Tempura Shrimp (Dynamite sauce, mango slaw, daikon, scallions). Then there’s a list of Ramen Noodle Bowls, a long Pad Thai listing of stir-fried noodles ($15) and  a Light-On-The-Spice section.

The stylish Kung Fu Kitchen & Sushi with indoor and outdoor patio seating in The Catalina Hotel & Beach Club, at 1720 Collins Avenue, South Beach,  is open daily from 5:00pm until 2:00am.   305.534.7905   www.catalinahotel.com/kungfukitchen .

Brasileiro, a  Brazilian-fusion steakhouse and lounge, has opened in the 300-seat indoor/outdoor space formerly occupied by Porcao at the Four Ambassadors Suites Hotel . In addition to the bar and lounge there’s  a 60-seat private dining area and a 70-seat terrace with a breathtaking waterfront view of Biscayne Bay.

Executive Chef Guily Booth brings over 15 years of work at popular local hotspots, including YUCA, and Cafeina,  to create a robust menu of affordable tapas-style small plates,  Brazilian specialties and  all-you-can-eat rodizio.

The prix-fixe rodizio for $39 per person is served tableside by passadores bearing swords of grilled prime cuts of picanha, churrasco, Brazilian sausages, leg of lamb and bacon wrapped chicken, among other choices. Roaming buffet carts offer unlimited helpings of à-la-carte side dishes such as white rice, black beans, French fries, fried banana (banana frita), farofa, salad and fried yuca.

The à la carte menu begins with appetizers, raw bar and tiraditos and continues with Brazilian classics such as the fragrant  Brazilian moqueca Bahia ($34) with zucchini, yellow squash, chayote, tomato, cilantro, dende oil, shrimp and coconut milk; blackened cobia ($34) served with shrimp, potato and chorizo home fries; and black seafood risotto ($36) with calamari, shrimp, piquillo peppers and sweet peas.    Among the appetizers there’s Chef Booth’s crab cakes ($14), which Martha Stewar touted  the “best she’s ever had”; crispy calamari steak ($9) with pepperoni sauce and orange jam; buffalo sweet and sour pork wings ($12) with cauliflower puree and grilled pineapple; and lamb sliders ($8) on soft yeast rolls with Indian tomato confit, feta cheese and broccoli sprouts.

Brasileiro steakhouse and lounge is open for lunch, Happy Hour and dinner daily from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 11 a.m. to midnight Thursday through Saturday;   11 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Sunday.  Brasileiro steakhouse and lounge in the  Four Ambassadors Suites Hotel at 801 Brickell Bay Drive.  Valet parking is $3 with validation.  (786) 502-3829; www.brasileiromiami.com

michael shikanyThere's a new contender in Miami's gastronomic arena:  Executive Chef Michael R. Shikany is set to open his eponymous eatery, SHIKANY Wynwood, this coming October in the Wynwood Arts District of Miami. The 130-seats, 4,000 square-foot  indoor/outdoor space will serve as a restaurant, a cocktail/tapas lounge and bar and a creative culinary space where he will schedule morning and evening cooking classes open to the public.

A graduate with honors from the French Culinary Institute (New York City) and a BA in Business Administration from George Washington University in Washington, D.C., Shikany, who is a Miami native of Lebanese and Italian descent, credits his Italian granddad for his love of cuisine.

Shikany, honed his skills at Le Bernardin, Babbo, Tao, Gramercy Tavern, and the James Beard House in New York city before coming to Miami to work at Ortanique for 6 years, and to open La Cofradia and Sushi Samba on Lincoln Road and their restaurants branches in Las Vegas.

Striking out on his own, he opened his own Event company and his own Consulting firm through which he opened a score of restaurants in New York, Los Angeles and Chicago.

Shikany said that he is the sole owner of the restaurant and he will wear many if not all the hats doing  everything from menu development to décor. An award-winning sommelier who won the Wine Spectator Award of Excellence 2007 for his boutique wine list at La Cofradia, Shikany will also pick the wine and spirits list. “We will have a great list from small batch vineyards from around the world and a wine-by-the-glass program which we plan to change every week,” he said.

Shikany plans as well to change the à la carte menu every month and will offer a daily 8 - 20 course degustation or tasting menu of 8 and 20-course at the 24-seats communal chef’s table, doing two 24-person seatings per night. He also plans to pamper vegetarian with special dishes and tasting menus with 48 hour advance notice.

SHIKANY Wynwood, will be open for dinner in main dining room from 6pm-12am and till 1 a.m. on weekends,  Cocktail/Tapas Lounge and Bar open 5:30 pm -11pm and till 1 a.m. on weekends; for scheduled cooking and mixology classes  Tuesday & Wednesday (morning + evening sessions), in addition to offering Catering, Private and Corporate Events + Team Building. 251 NW 25 St, Miami, FL 33127, (305) 979-8052 www.shikany.com

 

The Grateful Palate restaurant has announced that Saturday, July 13, 2013 will be the last day of operation at its current location on Southeast 17th Street. The restaurant’s owner, William McIntyre, recently purchased Shooters Waterfront Cafe and Bootlegger, former landmarks in South Florida’s waterfront restaurant scene, and has begun their transformation into a trio of waterfront businesses at 3033 NE 32 Avenue on the Intracoastal Waterway. All of the Grateful Palate’s  wait staff and talented chefs that have been key to the success of the restaurant and yacht provisioning business will make the transition to the new location.

-  The 6,000 sq. ft. Bootlegger will become Events by Grateful Palate,  a waterfront venue for weddings, private parties and other special events.

-  The 14,000 sq. ft. Shooters Waterfront Café will now be called Shooters Fort Lauderdale and will stay open during the complete interior and exterior redesign, including a new al frescodining area and new menu  .

-  Grateful Palate Yacht Provisions will continue operations from the new location, offering provisioning services both dockside and by delivery.  Located on the east side of the Intracoastal Waterway just south of Oakland Park Boulevard, the property includes 340 feet of dockage.

Chef Dean James Max, James Beard nominee and author of :  A Life by the Sea is parting ways with 3030 Ocean in Fort Lauderdale after 14 years.

He writes in his newsletter: “It is with slight sadness that I announce that DJM restaurants will no longer run the operations of 3030 Ocean. It has been 14 years since we created the concept in 1999, and I have personally had an amazing adventure with the restaurant. So many people came and went and so many talented cooks, chefs, and managers have rolled through the doors. I will miss the space, the people and our loyal customers but they will all have a new fun place to try in the future.”   

 Asked if he planned to relocate,  Chef Max  said that he lives in Boca Raton and doesn’t plan on changing that.   “This is my home base and I will be looking to form my new flagship in this area.”

Chef Max who has opened two new restaurants this past year; Parallel Post Restaurant  in Connecticut and James Republic  in Long Beach, California,  also operates Brasserie Cayman  in Cayman Islands, Asador Restaurant   in Dallas, Texas, Latitude 41  in Columbus, Ohio, Amp 150 in Cleveland, Ohio as well as his own firm: DJM Consulting Services.

 

 

Huahua’s Taqueria, a 35-seat indoor/outdoor taco shop by HaVen Hospitality Concepts, is now open at 1211 Lincoln Road, for lunch and dinner daily.  The brain child of Michael Boles and Niloy Thakkar, of HaVen Gastro-Lounge is cool and relaxed with colorful Mexican piñatas dangling from the ceiling over a collection of 21 hot sauces and a see-through glass cooler encasing an large collection of Mexican cervezas and soft drinks, and a custom-made margarita machine offering daily selections.   Huahua’s patio is pet friendly, providing doggie bowls for all shapes and sizes and complimentary biscuits to keep four-legged friends from begging.

The menu, designed by HaVen’s Chef Todd Erickson, starts with appetizers ($3-$7) such as nachos, topped with melted queso blanco, cotija cheese and all the fixings – refried black beans, tomato, onion, pickled jalapeño and cilantro, and elote, a grilled Mexican sweet corn as well as chip & dip selections – house-made tortilla chips paired with a variety of house-made sides such as a salsa trio, guacamole and queso blanco.

Tacos ($3.29 each) are authentically Mexican − from  vegetarian options like the Guaco with fried avocado, guacamole, grilled veggies and tofu crema, and Hongos Màjicos, stuffed with charred mushrooms, grilled veggies and tofu crema; to Carnitas, grilled meat topped with charred tomatillo salsa, radish, cilantro and Mexican cojita cheese; Grilled Mahi, with cabbage, radish, cilantro, onion and chili-lime vinaigrette; Fried Chicken, topped with jalapeño cornbread, cabbage and ancho ranch and BBQ short rib with pickled jalapeño and sweet heat coleslaw. The menu goes on with Enchiladas ($6.79 each) – warm tortillas filled with the option of shredded chicken with caramelized onions & cotija cheese; pulled pork with Huahua's spice blend & charred jalapeños; braised short rib with caramelized onions and cotija cheese or cheese and refried beans;   and end with Mexican inspired desserts ($3-$4) – including cinnamon-sugared funnel cake and a daily selection of paletas – Latin ice pops.

Huahua’s Taqueria, is open for lunch and dinner daily; Sunday - Thursday, 11 a.m. – midnight; Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. – 5 a.m.    1211 Lincoln Road,   (305) 534-TACO (8226); www.HuahuasTaco.com.  Ample street parking available.

Boulud Sud, 7/3 thru 9/2, Chef Daniel Boulud’s Mediterranean Pop-Up at  Café Boulud , Palm Beach,
It is with the panache that the pursuit - and achievement - of excellence enables him to deploy  in total simplicity,  that Chef Daniel Boulud is popping up the  Manhattan-based Boulud Sud  (20 West 64th Street, NYC)  at Café Boulud Palm Beach.
From Wednesday, July 3 through Monday, September 2, for dinner seven days a week the stand-alone restaurant romantically transports you to a sheikh’s  white tent -  air-conditioned of course – set on Café Boulud’s terrace, decorated  with palm trees, Moroccan earthenware and giant pots containing lemon trees, as the fountain courtyard and local birds soothingly provide the background  sound.
The menu at the Boulud Sud pop-up offers dishes from the Mediterranean basin, from Sardinia and Greece to Tunisia, Gibraltar, and Beirut, as Master sommelière  Mariya Kovacheva  mixes refreshing cocktails and serves boutique wines including a Slovenia Rebula, a variety of rosés from the south of France, Italy and Spain and even  with Spanish Jerez.  Jim Leiken, Café Boulud Executive Chef, has stamped the Boulud signature on appetizers like Chilled Cucumber Gazpacho with dill cream and baby radishes; on Mediterranean “Mezze” or appetizers like falafel, Meyer lemon hummus and Babaganoush ( an eggplant-based, sesame paste dip) and even on the Horiatiki, a classic Greek salad. The menu continues with a fork-tender Spanish-style Octopus à la Plancha with Marcona almonds, arugula and Jerez vinegar;  Gambas Al Ajillo, head-on carabineros or giant shrimp from Morocco with ratatouille and basil pesto, and a moist and succulent whole Roasted Loup de Mer or Lubina  with local squash, romesco sauce and wild arugula.  Of course there is spiced Colorado roasted Lamb and merguez as well as chicken and meat dishes for those who don’t mind heavier fare in the sultry summer heat.  Pastry Chef Arnaud Chavigny ‘s desserts range from the classic with a Provençal Moëlleux - an almond-pistachio cake with strawberries and meringue;  a  Mint Chocolate Pavé with chocolate sorbet, to the more exotic like the refreshing Grapefruit Givré  served in   a hollow half grapefruit, with sesame halva and rose Turkish loukoum  .
The pop-up will serve an à la carte dinner menu daily from 5:30-10pm, and a three- course prix fixe menu for $35 per person on Saturdays and Sundays.  Café Boululd’s classic menu will be offered in parallel to the Mediterranean offerings and remains available all summer at lunch, dinner and weekend brunch.   561-655-6060;  301 Australian Avenue, Palm Beach, FL,   www.cafeboulud.com .

daniel boulud It is with the panache that the pursuit - and achievement - of excellence enables him to deploy  in total simplicity,  that Chef Daniel Boulud is popping up the  Manhattan-based Boulud Sud  (20 West 64th Street, NYC)  at Café Boulud Palm Beach.

From Wednesday, July 3 through Monday, September 2, for dinner seven days a week the stand-alone restaurant romantically transports you to a sheikh’s  white tent -  air-conditioned of course – set on Café Boulud’s terrace, decorated

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  with palm trees, Moroccan earthenware and giant pots containing lemon trees, as the fountain courtyard and local birds soothingly provide the background  sound.

The menu at the Boulud Sud pop-up offers dishes from the Mediterranean basin, from Sardinia and Greece to Tunisia, Gibraltar, and Beirut, as Master sommelière  Mariya Kovacheva  mixes refreshing cocktails and serves boutique wines including a Slovenia Rebula, a variety of rosés from the south of France, Italy and Spain and even  with Spanish Jerez.  

dsc01575

Jim Leiken, Café Boulud Executive Chef, has stamped the Boulud signature on appetizers like Chilled CucumberGazpacho with dill cream and baby radishes; on Mediterranean “Mezze” or appetizers like falafel, Meyer lemon hummus and Babaganoush ( an eggplant-based,sesame paste dip) and even on the Horiatiki, a classic Greek salad. The menu continues with a fork-tender Spanish-style Octopus à la Plancha with Marcona almonds, arugula and Jerez vinegar;  Gambas al Ajillo, head-on carabineros or giant shrimp from Morocco with ratatouille and basil pesto, and a moist and succulent whole Roasted Loup de Mer or Lubina  with local squash, romesco sauce and wild arugula.  Of course there is spiced Colorado roasted Lamb and merguez as well as chicken and meat dishes for those who don’t mind heavier fare in the sultry summer heat.  

choco dessertPastry Chef Arnaud Chavigny ‘s desserts range from the classic with a Provençal Moëlleux - an almond-pistachio cake with strawberries and meringue;  a  Mint Chocolate Pavé with chocolate sorbet, to the more exotic like the refreshing Grapefruit Givré  served in   a hollow half grapefruit, with sesame halva and rose Turkish loukoum  .The pop-up will serve an à la carte dinner menu daily from 5:30-10pm, and a three- course prix fixe menu for $35 per person on Saturdays and Sundays.  Café Boululd’s classic menu will be offered in parallel to the Mediterranean offerings and remains available all summer at lunch, dinner and weekend brunch.   561-655-6060;  301 Australian Avenue, Palm Beach, FL,   www.cafeboulud.com .

Zagat.com wants you, anyone really, to be a restaurant reviewer
Zagat is making some changes by removing the user account system on zagat.com.    On July 10, 2013, Zagat editorial ratings and reviews will be made available to all zagat.com users; you will no longer need to sign in with an account to view them.   Since  Zagat is a part of Google and reviews have been integrated into Google+ Local, anyone can make their reviews public and attributed to the reviewer or make them private. The benefit of this option is that your reviews will continue to be accessible to you online (in your Google+ profile) and Google can provide recommendations based on your reviews.


Zagat is making some changes by removing the user account system on zagat.com.    

On July 10, 2013, Zagat editorial ratings and reviews will be made available to all zagat.com users; you will no longer need to sign in with an account to view them.   Since  Zagat is a part of Google and reviews have been integrated into Google+ Local, anyone can make their reviews public and attributed to the reviewer or make them private. The benefit of this option is that your reviews will continue to be accessible to you online (in your Google+ profile) and Google can provide recommendations based on your reviews.

Future Dining Options in Miami
New landscapes fraught with dining additions are in the making to change Miami’s skyline and Miamian’s dining habits. Starting with Scotty’s Landing at the Dinner Key; the last remnant of a nostalgic era of laid back eating and drinking under ceiling fans with pets and children, reggae and country music overlooking Biscayne Bay is nearing its demise. The reason: the lease is up after over 35 years and owner and operator Scott Wessel is faced with issues of taxes and fuel bills.
New generations may enjoy the waterfront from a different perspective if Miami city officials approve a new plan for a new two-story modern, maritime-inspired building with floor-to-ceiling windows designed by Arquitectonica International.
According to the Miami Herald. Grove Bay Investment Group is the lone team vying for the job. Scotty’s would be replaced by Hangar 42 Pub & Grub, a casual pub,  and The Chart House by a Shula’s Steak & Seafood and a high-end Peruvian seafood restaurant. There would be “ a state-of-the-art boat storage facility, public promenade, banyan tree park, an event space and a four-story parking garage.”

 
New landscapes fraught with dining additions are in the making to change Miami’s skyline and Miamian’s dining habits. Starting with Scotty’s Landing at the Dinner Key; the last remnant of a nostalgic era of laid back eating and drinking under ceiling fans with pets and children, reggae and country music overlooking Biscayne Bay is nearing its demise. The reason: the lease is up after over 35 years and owner and operator Scott Wessel is faced with issues of taxes and fuel bills.

 New generations may enjoy the waterfront from a different perspective if Miami city officials approve a new plan for a new two-story modern, maritime-inspired building with floor-to-ceiling windows designed by Arquitectonica International.

According to the Miami Herald. Grove Bay Investment Group is the lone team vying for the job. Scotty’s would be replaced by Hangar 42 Pub & Grub, a casual pub,  and The Chart House by a Shula’s Steak & Seafood and a high-end Peruvian seafood restaurant. There would be “ a state-of-the-art boat storage facility, public promenade, banyan tree park, an event space and a four-story parking garage.”

Photo: ARQUITECTONICAGEO

Three high profile restaurants — SouthStreet. Cooper Avenue. Bond Street — all launched by Miami real estate investor/restauranteur Amir Ben-Zion, with a variety of business partners, including chef Michelle Bernstein at Senora Martinez in the Design District, have closed
Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/2013/06/05/3435664/menus-are-shut-on-three-high-profile.html?story_link=email_msg#storylink=cpy

Three high profile restaurants — SouthStreet. Cooper Avenue. Bond Street — all launched by Miami real estate investor/restauranteur Amir Ben-Zion with a variety of business partners, including chef Michelle Bernstein at Senora Martinez in the Design District, have closed.


Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/2013/06/05/3435664/menus-are-shut-on-three-high-profile.html?story_link=email_msg#storylink=cpy

Though “cheffy” touches are certainly on the menu (cauliflower panna cotta with uni and caviar, anyone?), Tongue & Cheek – the new 150-seat restaurant owned by Chef Jamie DeRosa and Michael Reginbogin – promises to be much more than just a foodie haven.  “We designed Tongue & Cheek to be that neighborhood place you can happily call your own,” says DeRosa — formerly of Tudor House — who has spent close to 20 years as a professional chef.  “There is a great sense of personality in all things – from the design and décor to the menu and our drinks but it, ultimately, is a hospitable spot for a great meal at an affordable price or a drink with friends.”  Located in South Beach’s more residential “south of Fifth” neighborhood on South Beach at 431 Washington Avenue, Tongue & Cheek is now open.

Tongue & Cheek features approachable, ingredient-driven, American fare with just the right amount of whimsy.  “We didn’t call it ‘Tongue & Cheek’ for nothing,” comments DeRosa, whose dishes benefit from tons of technique but a conscientious lack of self-indulgence.  “We want to wow people with simple yet sophisticated food they’ll want to eat every day,” DeRosa adds.  Inspired by DeRosa’s travels and multi-ethnic gastronomic obsessions, the menu is diverse without being unwieldy or unfocused.  Much like the “snack bar” that welcomes guests as they enter, the Snacks section of the menu ($5-$15) gets things started.  House-made rye crackers come with country ham and cheddar pimento cheese – a luscious Southern treat.  A trio of Boquerones (white Spanish anchovies), mellowed by a bright citrus marinade, is served atop baked planks of media noche bread.  A deconstructed Spanish-style tortilla is served in delicious layers with a sous vide egg, potatoes and deep fried scallions.  100% pure Iberico de Bellota ham is sliced to order and served with pickled vegetables and bread.  “We’re not a tapas or small plates restaurant but we want to give diners a way to sample and enjoy different flavors and textures,” says Reginbogin, who co-designed the restaurant and brought his exacting tastes to the restaurant’s menu concept.

Appetizers ($9-$18) embrace both classic American favorites as well as more unusual offerings.  Fried clams, inspired by DeRosa’s wife’s Rhode Island childhood, come to the table fried to order in a basket with cherry peppers and smoked aioli.  A definite standout is a salad of raw and pickled peaches, served atop whipped French feta, greens, topped with candied hazelnuts and peach sorbet.  Lettuce wraps have never been better, served here with crispy pig ears, Florida oranges and salted peanuts.  And there is, of course, the aforementioned cauliflower panna cotta with uni and American caviar.

Technically complex but deceptively simple and delicious, Mains ($20-$30) deliver big flavors.  Suckling pig is served with a succotash of fresh peas and morel mushrooms, dressed with garlic cream.  Crisp lamb belly comes accompanied by barbecued octopus, roasted eggplant and Romanesco sauce.  Day boat scallops get the Florida treatment, served with hearts of palm, popcorn puree and spicy yuzu.  House-made chitarra pasta is served Carbonara-style with salted & cured pork belly, sweet corn and Fregola.  Fried chicken with Tabasco® hollandaise shares the stage with a basket of fish n’ chips and the classic American hamburger is given a must-try-it-to-believe it spin – beef cheek is ground in-house and formed into a six ounce patty, cooked to perfection, served with caramelized sweet onions and pimento-infused cheddar cheese on a house-made brioche bun.

Though destined to be a menu staple, the duo has no plans on making the Tongue & Cheek menu burger-centric.  “A lot of work goes into that burger and we won’t be making a ton of them,” says DeRosa.  “We haven’t figured out what the magic number will be but we’ll only make a certain number a day and when they’re gone, they’re gone.”  Sides ($10) are large enough to share and run the gamut from Bejing-style green beans with Szechwan pepper and dried shrimp and Brussels sprouts with whipped ricotta, pistachios and orange to “poutine” pastrami-spiced friesDesserts ($8-$10) run the gamut, from salted pretzel ice cream, cashew Praliné and coffee cake to a killer Cracker Jack milkshake with house-made “Baby Ruths.”

A great selection of beers, wines by the glass/bottle and an array of whimsical hand-crafted cocktails ($13-$22) round out the offerings.  Sure to be bar staples are Bourbon for Apples – Buffalo Trace, Green Apple, Fresh Thyme; Cucumfortably Numb – Tito’s Handmade Vodka, cucumber and dill; and The Walking Dead – Death’s Door gin and Matt’s Farm strawberries.

The restaurant’s interior design, décor and ambiance reflects the concept’s sensibilities, with art  commissioned by DeRosa and Reginbogin and an eclectic playlist rich with old school hip hop, classic and alternative rock.  Design wise, think rustic yet polished. The cozy bar, comprised of rich woods, an internally lit marble top and gleaming subway tile, features a fabulous signature cocktail list as well as two large televisions, camouflaged behind mirrors.  Seating 15, the bar also features the restaurant’s “snack bar,” a live action station from which most of the items from the Snacks menu originate.  Gorgeous, modernist lighting will play off the charm of comfortable, simply set tables of solid wood.  Seating is broken up by a central, two-sided banquette, a private dining room (seating 14) and intimate patio. All artwork is original by local artist Claudio Picasso, including a haunting pastoral mural in the private dining room and impressionistic aerial views of the Miami skyline in the main dining room.

Prior to Tongue and Cheek, Reginbogin served as General Manager of Estiatorio Milos, also on Miami Beach, and Regional Director of Operations at Sugarcane Raw Bar Grill.  Most recently, DeRosa served as executive chef of Tudor House at Dream South Beach hotel.  It was there that the two met and forged the friendship that would lead to the formation of the Social Dining Concepts LLC banner in 2012, under which Tongue & Cheek operates.

Tongue & Cheek is open for dinner nightly – 6:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, ‘til midnight on Friday & Saturday.  The snack bar opens at 5:00 p.m., with Happy Hour specials on handcrafted cocktails, beer and wines by the glass nightly from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.  431 Washington Avenue on South Beach, (305) 704-2900; www.tandcmiami.com.

Samba Brands Management has launched its seventh SUSHISAMBA location — the third in South Florida. The other two are James Beard nominated SUGARCANE raw bar grill in Midtown and SUSHISAMBA in Miami Beach.— in the heart of Miracle Mile in Coral Gables where Norman’s 180 debuted.

Architectural firm CetraRuddy redesigned the restaurant’s 6,500-square-ft space, complete with a lounge, two bars, alfresco dining and a premier event space. For the first time, SUSHISAMBA Coral Gables will offer a daily breakfast menu, featuring freshly baked breads, exotic juices and a batida bar among the classic offerings. SUSHISAMBA’s menus showcase an inventive culmination of three cuisines. Guests are treated to Brazilian churrasco and moqueca, Peruvian anticuchos and ceviches; and Japanese wagyu, tempura and sushi. The centrally-positioned sushi bar offers signature samba rolls and sashimi. The open kitchen, brick oven and fiery robata grill deliver roasted and flavored meats, vegetables and fish.

SUSHISAMBA’s signature cocktails menu lists Nina Fresa, Chu-Cumber and Caipirinha. The beverage menu includes cultural spirits such as shochu, pisco and cachaça, in addition to wines, beers and champagne, and one of the largest premium sake selections in Florida.

SUSHISAMBA Coral Gables is open daily for lunch, dinner and weekend brunch.   Westin Colonnade Hotel at 180 Aragon Avenue in Coral Gables, Florida. For additional information please visit sushisamba.com.

Strada in the Grove, slated to open in July or August 2013, is restaurateur Maurizio Farinelli’s (Trattoria Sole, Pizza Blu in South Miami and Sole in Mary Brickell Village) come back after a two-year hiatus during which he returned to his native Milan.

The 60-indoor-seats restaurant with more seats in an outdoor patio and sidewalk terrace is still under construction in the location vacated by Citas three years ago.   But chefs  Antonio Tettamanti (formerly from Osteria del Teatro and presently in St. Paul, Minnesota) and Andrea Raines (presently chef at Dolce Italian in Miami Beach), together with seasoned restaurateur Farinelli are working on the menu: retro-chic authentic  Italian regional cuisines from different parts of the country, with a cicchetti (Italian tapas) bar and an old-fashioned salumería or charcuterie bar.   

There will be a large list of  wines by the glass, craft beers and wines from boutique  wineries, Italian and from around the world.    
3176 Commodore Plaza in the heart of Coconut Grove. 

Greek restaurateurs Makis Paliouras and Yiannis Sotiropoulos have opened Kouzina Greek Bistro (Kouzina means kitchen or stove ) in the space formerly occupied by Tapas and Tintos in the Miami Design District. The décor is typically Greek islands:  white washed walls with blue touches, simple wooden tables, chairs, pillows and even starched linen napkins imported from Greece impart a cool feeling —  the ticket for a hot Miami summer — to the outdoor bar, the umbrellas-covered terrace and the interior.

The home-cooking-style menu by chef Alexia Apostolidis is typically Greek starting with spreads ($6 - $7) like Tzatziki, eggplant puree or hummus.   Mezes  ($7 to $10) or appetizers  From The Land list Manouri cheese envelopes drizzled with honey and sprinkled with sesame seeds; Saganaki  or fried Greek cheese; fried keftedes of meatballs stuffed with feta cheese and mind. Mezes From the Sea ($11 to $14) range from bacalao croquettes and Calamari basil poeto to Picked octopus, crispy calamari and steamed mussels.

 

 

 

 

 

Salads ($9 to $14) precede a listing of —literally — Big Plates  ($16 to $27): Kouzina lamb with Greek cheese, lemon potatoes and sautéed zucchini;  slow roasted pork rib; Santorini chicken breat; chicken souvlaki and a whole grilled fish.  Daily specials — moussaka, stuffed vegetables, roasted meats, etc… — are chalked in on the blackboard and served like it would be in someone’s kitchen.

The wine list is basic and includes just one of each red white Greek wines. The short dessert list offers Greek yoghurt cheesecake with rose petal marmalade, baklava and chocolate lava cake with sokofreta (chocolate wafers) ice cream.

Kouzina Greek Bistro is open seven days for dinner only from 6 p.m. till closing time. Lunch and brunch are  in the plans.  at 3535 NE 2nd Ave (between NE 35 & 36th St), Miami 33137.  (305) 392-1825.

Biscayne Tavern is a 90-seat laid-back, casual neighborhood pub with HD TVs, high stools surrounding the bar and leather booths off  the lobby of b2 miami downtown HOTEL, and right across from the AAA Arena. It is also the newest concept of Jeffrey Chodorow of China Grill Management.  Executive Chef Will Biscoe has devised a typical pub-style fare around over 15 draft beers from microbreweries around the country, a large list of wines-by-the-glass and cocktails.

The menu list from snacks and sliders (6$ - $12) including Fried Oysters with ‘Rockefeller dip’;  seared tuna burgers, grilled cheese sandwiches, Pastrami Bacon Reuben; to Salads ($11 - $14) and Mains ($16 - $29) like Hanger steak,  Grilled brick-pressed Italian lemon garlic chicken; Duck Sheperd’s Pie, Long Bone Short Rib Pot Roast “en cocotte” with fresh horseradish and warm truffle popovers and Bowtie Pasta and Gulf Shrimp. For daily specials there’s Steamed mussels Provençale; South Florida bouillabaisse and calves liver.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Biscayne Tavern is open seven days for breakfast from 6:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., lunch from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. and dinner from 5 p.m. to 10:30 p.m.   Biscayne Tavern, off the lobby of the   b2 miami downtown, 146 Biscayne Boulevard, Miami.  305-307-8300   www.biscaynetavern.com.

 

The 52-seats casually upscale Temaris founded by Venezuelan restaurateurs Alexander Peroni and Salvador Sacasa, opened its doors in Miami’s Brickell neighborhood reviving the nearly extinct culinary technique it takes its name from: Temaris transforms the traditional sushi roll into bite-size spheres of flavorful fusion.  “I sensed there was something for me to contribute to the industry and when I came across Temaris, I knew it was something extraordinary I had to run with,” mused Peroni who was working in a Miami hotspot when he realized that the traditional sushi roll was too large and sometimes difficult to eat. While researching other techniques he stumbled upon the art of temaris; A temari (singular) consists of a bite sized rice ball layered with a protein and other add-ons which create accessible portions of significant, full flavored creations.

The vast menu executed by Chef Jose Gamez  contains elements from many different culinary cultures including Japanese and Peruvian and lists fresh salads, soups, ceviche, tataki, and tartars, in addition to a selection of mains, omakase temaris, omakase rolls and traditional Japanese sashimi. Signature combinations include the Tokyo Temari spicy tuna, almonds, tobiko with served with Temaris sauce; Miami Temaris shrimp, guacamole, tobiko with kabayaki sauce; Ceviche Tower chopped white fish, shrimp or seafood marinated with fresh lemon, cilantro, red onion and yellow chili sauce; and Spicy Geisha tuna crab salad, avocado, soy paper topped with guacamole, spicy tuna, almonds and yellow chili sauce. In addition to the restaurant’s extensive menu, 17 different sauces are offered to complement each dish, curated by the in-house culinary artisans.

There is an extensive list of Japanese beers and a vast selection of sake and sake blends — with passion fruit, guava and mango — to complement and enhance the dining experience.

Temaris is open for lunch and dinner Monday – Thursday from 11:30 am – 11:00 pm, Friday & Saturday 11:30 am – 12:00 pm and Sunday 11:30 am – 10:30 pm. and will soon begin catering and delivering the perfect bite-sized sushi spheres. Temaris, 1250 South Miami Avenue, Miami, FL 33130. 305-836-2747. http://temaris.com.

After a brief hiatus, restaurateur Jack Mancini is back to his old stopping ground on Las Olas Boulevard with Mancini Modern Italian, a 168-seat, upscale , Italian restaurant with open kitchen, wood burning Neapolitan oven, large, indoor/outdoor white, Cararra marble bar. The menu by  Executive Chef Claudio Sandri, from the original Mancini's on east Las Olas, features  made to order pastas, fresh ingredients, locally sourced meats, fish and produce and homemade desserts

Mancini Modern Italian is open for lunch from 11:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and dinner 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. Monday through Saturday. The full bar is open until 1 a.m. Monday through Saturday. Happy hour from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday with two-for-one cocktails, beer and wine and $5 appetizers.   401 E. Las Olas Blvd. (Southeast Fourth Avenue) on the emerging west end of the downtown business district of Las Olas Boulevard 754-200-8602 www.mancinilasolas.com.

The 100-seat indoor/side-walk Barock Miami is the Pravda Group’s first restaurant in the US. 

The owners, Swedish-born Tommy Sjöö and his daughter Jessica Sjöö, own and run over 25 restaurants in Europe including the first Barock restaurant in Prague, Czech Republic.

The side-walk is typical Ocean Drive, with little tables shaded by huge umbrellas. Inside, the décor is eclectic; touches of Scandinavian simplicity alternate with lavish Asian and sultry Mediterranean details. “We have concentrated in the same place all the elements that we liked during our travels in different countries,” said Tommy Sjöö of the concept as he shows a wall lined with pictures of celebrities - from  Hillary Clinton and Caroline of Monaco to Madeleine Albright - who have at one point dined at any one of his establishments.

 From the lounge with low-seats to the dining area, all seats face the bar, a centerpiece of the restaurant, behind   which hands-on mixologist Nate Springer prepares his own syrups  to mix into cocktails like the Miami Mai Tai, light and dark rum, orange liqueur, fresh lime, pineapple and  orange juice ($12); Sundance Margarita, blanco tequila infused with jalapeño, lime juice, homemade strawberry Serrano syrup and fresh strawberry juice ($12); or  Aloha Lemonade, ginger infused vodka, fresh lemon juice, homemade lemongrass ginger syrup and a splash of soda water ($11).
The wine list is short and uninteresting.

From the open kitchen manned by three chefs comes a menu as eclectic as the décor which spans Asia, Italy and the United States with nary an East European dish.

 

 

 

 

 

 

For starters ($10 - $13) there’s  Coconut Cured Lobster served with homemade yucca chips;  Tartar two ways, that is salmon and tuna and flash-fried calamari, as well as spring rolls.  Under Salads and Soups, other than the ubiquitous Caesar and Caprese, there’s Tom Yum Soup with prawns and Thai veggies. The best thing on the meat menu ($14 - $27) is the pan-seared duck, but there is also a burger, Asian pork tacos and grilled skirt steak.  For fish and seafood, the house recommends a thick slab of Chilean sea bass baked in a bana leaf and crispy skin salmon. Pastas list two: Arrabiata with spicy tomato sauce and fettuccini.

Barock Miami is open seven days for breakfast, lunch and dinner.  1412 Ocean Drive,  Miami Beach, 305-546-4044    www.barockmiami.com

 

The JW Marriott Hotel Miami’s newest café, Intermezzo at Brickell, is slated to open this April with  an Italian-themed  menu developed by the hotel’s award-winning Executive Chef, Daniel Goldich. A team of baristas will make-to-order specialty coffees while patrons shop for home items, including coffee cups and specialized coffee/espresso machines.  “The JW Marriott Hotel Miami is proud to offer Intermezzo at Brickell as the area’s newest upscale café & Deli,” said Alfredo Sarnataro, Director of Food & Beverage at the JW Marriott Hotel Miami.

Intermezzo at Brickell located in the lobby of the Sabadell Financial Center connected to the JW Marriott Hotel Miami will be open for breakfast, lunch and early dinner Monday through Friday, 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. 1109 Brickell Avenue, Miami, FL 33131 (305) 329-3500 http://www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/miajw-jw-marriott-hotel-miami/

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