Title: Biscayne times
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Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00099644/00032
 Material Information
Title: Biscayne times
Physical Description: Newspaper
Language: English
Publisher: Biscayne Media, LLC
Place of Publication: Miami, Florida
Publication Date: August 2009
Copyright Date: 2009
 Subjects
Spatial Coverage: United States -- Florida -- Dade -- Biscayne Boulevard Corridor
Coordinates: 25.831647 x -80.182343 ( Place of Publication )
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00099644
Volume ID: VID00032
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.

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August 2009


BISCAYNE
Serving the communities along the Biscayne Corridor, including Arch Creek East, Bay Point, Bayside, Biscayne Park, Belle Meade, Buena
Vista, Design District, Downtown, Edgewater, El Portal, Hibiscus Island, Keystone Point, Miami Shores, Momingside, North Bay Island,
North Miami, Oakland Grove, Palm Grove, Palm Island, Sans Souci, Shorecrest, Star Island, Wynwood, and Venetian Islands


At 4:00 p.m. on a late June afternoon,
the sun hammers down while the
humidity steams. But shaded win-
dows mute the glare in Derek Mellman's
Dancemasters studio, upstairs in a nonde-
script North Miami strip mall. Smooth pop
music also cuts the heat as a young couple,


Christopher and Deana, practice a night-
club two-step for their upcoming wedding.
They glide, tall and graceful, while
longtime Dancemasters teacher Sharon
Butler hovers nearby.
"These are my first dance lessons -
ever," admits Christopher.


Watching from a nearby table is the
dance master himself, Milt Derek Mell-
man. Even sitting down, Mellman exudes
suavity. A trim man in his 60s, his hair
is Brillo gray, and he wears a match-
ing mustache and neat goatee. Over the
past three decades, Mellman has seen


dozens of couples, wedding-day-bound,
dance through his studio. They are only
a fraction of the students, social dancers,
hobbyists, and aspiring competitors who
have found their way to Dancemasters,
Continued on page 14


A MODERN ITALIAN CAFFE


HERE COMES

THE NEIGHBORHOOD
2506 NW 2ND AVENUE WYNWOOD, MIAMI TEL: 305.438.0488 FAX: 305.438.0487 JOEYSWYNWOOD.COM


CALL 305-756-6200 FOR INFORMATION ABOUT THIS ADVERTISING SPACE










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The Open Door Miami Team
Bonnie Brooks 305.206.4186
Ilene Tessler 305.458.1200


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


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SUNDAY I MONDAY I TUESDAY I WEDNESDAY I THURSDAY I FRIDAY I SATURDAY


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009








CONTENTS
COVER STORY
1 A Chance to Dance
COMMENTARY
6 Feedback: Letters
10 Miami's King: Jack King
12 Word on the Street
OUR SPONSORS
8 BizBuzz & Advertiser Directory
NEIGHBORHOOD CORRESPONDENTS
20 Jen Karetnick: Out With the Manicured Lawn
22 Frank Rollason: Local Legal Eagle Makes Good
24 Wendy Doscher-Smith: Creatures Mythical and Real
COMMUNITY NEWS
26 The Ultimate Ugly Neighbor
26 School Dazed in El Portal, Part 2
27 Biscayne Boulevard: Bring on the Green
27 Village Place: Flush with Promise
POLICE REPORTS
30 Biscayne Crime Beat
ART & CULTURE
32 TM Sisters: Big, Wet, and Fast
34 Art Listings
37 Culture Briefs
PARK PATROL
38 Eaton Park: Lots of Potential, All of It Unrealized
COLUMNISTS
40 Harper's Environment: Canaries in the Oceanic Coal Mine
41 Kids and the City: Never Too Busy for Fun
42 Pawsitively Pets: Big People with Little Dogs
44 Your Garden: First the Rain, Then the Pain
DINING GUIDE
45 Restaurant Listings
46 Wine: Red, White, and You


c 'r-


BISCAYNE E


PO Box 370566, Miami, FL 33137 www.biscaynetimes.com


PUBLISHER & EDITOR
Jim Mullin
jim.mullin@biscaynetimes.com
INTERN
Brian Horowitz
brian.horowitz@biscaynetimes.com
CONTRIBUTORS
Victor Barrenchea, Erik Bojnansky,
Pamela Robin Brandt,
Terence Cantarella, Bill Citara,
Wendy Doscher-Smith, Kathy Glasgow,
Margaret Griffis, Jim W. Harper,
Lisa Hartman, Jen Karetnick,
Jack King, Derek McCann,
Frank Rollason, Silvia Ros,
Jeff Shimonski


ACCOUNT EXECUTIVES
Marco Fernandez
marco.fernandez@biscaynetimes.com
Marc Ruehle
marc.ruehle@biscaynetimes.com
OFFICE MANAGER
Wilmer Ametin
wilmer.ametin@biscaynetimes.com
ART DIRECTOR
Marcy Mock
marseadesign@mac.com
ADVERTISING DESIGN
DP Designs
production@biscaynetimes.com
CIRCULATION
South Florida Distributors


FOR ADVERTISING INFORMATION CALL 305-756-6200
All articles, photos, and artwork in the Biscayne Times *' .
are copyrighted by Biscayne Media, LLC. Any duplication or Member ofthe
reprinting without authorized written consent from the publisher Florida Press Association
is prohibited.


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009










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Price Includes Business & 1/2 Acre of
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Only 20% down @ 6% fixed int.!!!


4bdr 3blh Pool 2 Car Garage, New Built Add
2008 Hi Vaulted, Ceilings Over 3200SF
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Priced at land value S399K


3Bdr 3Bth Pool All New 2006 W/Finest Upgrades,
Custom Waterfall Entry, 24' Marble Floors, Oversized
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Baths, New Root, 75' of Dockage W/2 Boat Davits.
New Schools, S799K


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SPOOL & GARAGE
New hurricane impact
windows, new apple's,
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floors, new central A/C
& new Diamond Brite
pool. Minutes to bay,
For Rent 24hrs guard &
$3,000/mnit gated comm.


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009







COMMENTARY: FEEDBACK


I
Dialing for Dollars in the
Digital Age
Allow me to provide a few more details
and facts relating to an incident in which
a customer at the News Lounge lost
her iPhone. It was reported in an item
headlined "Clearing Tables Literally"
("Biscayne Crime Beat," July 2009).
First of all, when one loses some-
thing, for whatever reason, it is the
responsibility of the person who lost the
item. The place where the item is lost has
no responsibility for the "loss," per se.
That said, our strict policy for lost items
is as follows: Regardless of the value of
the item that is found on our property by
one of our employees, they are to imme-
diately turn it over to management.
Unfortunately in this case, a News
Lounge busboy claims he saw the phone
and asked at a nearby table if perhaps
the phone belonged to them. According
to his account, a gentleman at the table
(seeing that it was an iPhone) claimed it
was indeed his and asked for the bus-
boy's cell phone number, which he stored
in the found phone so as to ic'\\ lid" the
busboy at some later time.
Now, the buser, who was thoroughly
questioned about the incident, did seem
to misstate the facts on one or more
occasions, getting confused and nervous
during our interviews with him. For sure,
this did concern us. But the "proof' that
he had consciously taken the phone was
circumstantial, and as he had been a
good employee since the day we opened
almost a year earlier, with no prior inci-
dents, we chose to give him the benefit
of the doubt and decided not to terminate
his employment. However, he was writ-
ten up and disciplined for not following
company policy.


LETTERSS TO
As for the patron who lost her phone,
we profoundly apologized that our lost-
and-found policy had not been followed,
and only because our staff member had
the phone in his possession but did not
turn it in to management, we agreed to
pay for a replacement phone to the tune
of several hundred dollars, even though
we were not obliged to do so.
All around, I think we handled the
matter properly and professionally, and
even went beyond our "responsibility"
in this case by paying for the replace-
ment phone.
Ryan York, director of operations
55th Street Station
Miami

Headline-Writing
Publishing Tycoon Takes a
Pass on This One
I just wanted to throw in my two cents
in response to the letter from Miami
New Times editor Chuck Strouse aimed
at BT publisher and editor Jim Mullin
and columnist Jack King ("Full-Force
Smackdown Floors Discredited Publish-
ing Tycoon," July 2009). First some
disclosure. Not only was I once the BT
editor, I'm still an occasional contributor,
so I'll try and be as objective as possible.
And since neither Strouse nor Mullin can
be objective about their own publications,
here's some honest analysis from street
level.
Strouse is no dummy. He knows
that Jack King's columns come with
a lot of hyperbole. It's a style, his
style, and for good or ill, he's come
to be known as a fiery curmudgeon
whose barbs spare no one. But the
thrust of his commentary "Miami's
Media Muddle" (June 2009) reflected


THE EDITOR


Calling All Writers! Well,
Maybe Not All Writers
We here at Biscayne Times World
Headquarters are looking for some
new correspondents to supplement our
stellar cast. If you live in a condo in
downtown Miami (between the river
and 1-395), and you'd like to chronicle
life in that particular frontier, we want
to hear from you. Ditto for these areas:
Edgewater, North Bay Village, Bay
Harbor Islands, and North Miami.
Warning: This is not a path to riches.
Please send contact information
and writing samples (if you have
them) to editor Jim Mullin: jim.
mullin@biscaynetimes.com.


a widespread perception of New Times.
It's journalism lite, and heavy on the
snark and sensationalism. It's a paper
that goes out of its way to find trashy,
lurid topics. New Times is for music
and art and "Savage Love," but not
hardcore news. My favorite part is the
incendiary letters they have to print
each week.
You can't even fairly compare the
BT and New Times. One is a young,
grassroots community paper on a
shoestring budget, the latter is much
older, and owned by a nationwide media
conglomerate with vast resources. The
New Times is ad space filler, and my copy
hits the trash can hours after I pick it up.
But I keep the BTfor a month and read it
cover to cover because of the quality and
relevance of its community journalism.
Since I left as editor, Mullin has raised
the paper beyond what I ever envisioned
it could be.


Finally, Strouse's mean-spirited
public jibe at Mullin regarding the
Art Teele affair is as low as it gets. He
crossed over a line of professional de-
cency, responding with a bomb to what
was essentially an arrow from a colum-
nist not the publisher.
You're a classy guy, Strouse. Keep
it up.
Christian Cipriani
Edgewater

Ditto
Chuck Strouse's tone in his "Full-Force
Smackdown" letter was angry and bitter.
He mentioned that New Times has won
numerous editorial awards for excellent
journalism, while Biscayne Times has not.
Someone should remind him that most of
those awards were won on Jim Mullin's
watch as editor of New Times, not his. Mr.
Mullin is the man who put that paper on
the map and made it into what it became.
In recent years, Biscayne Times has
grown into a wonderful little community
gem. As far as the awards go, give Mr.
Mullin time, they'll come.
Anne Acevedo
Lake Belmar

Don't Forget What
Happened When the
Times Charged for
Online Content
Super-duper new BT Website! When can
we start paying you for a subscription?
We had to resort to a subscription to the
New York Times.
We're always looking forward to the
next issue.
Linda Cahill
Miami Shores


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com August 2009


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009







































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August 2009


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com








OUR SPONSORS


BizBuzz: August 2009

Sales, special events, and more from the people who make Biscayne Times possible


By Pamela Robin Brandt
BT Contributor


This year August is "Explore
Downtown Month," or at least
the Miami Parking Author-
ity is hoping to make it so. To attract
those who avoid downtown because of
parking hassles, three MPA garages (at
190 NE 3rd St., 100 SE 2nd St., and,
Friday-Saturday only, 90 SW 1st St.) are
offering a flat $3 daily rate on weekends,
and flat-rate parking of $3 for up to three
hours every weeknight after 5:00 p.m.
Additionally, street parkers whose meters
have expired will be issued a "courtesy
citation" explaining they've been granted
a free hour of parking instead of a ticket.
The discounts are good all month, except
for special-event parking.
One such special event, says MPA
spokesman Tim Dodson, is a brand-new
film series at the lovely old Gusman
Center for the Performing Arts (174 E.
Flagler St.; ), which is managed by the
parking authority. Is this city weird or
what? Anyway, the theater is hosting
"Flickin' Summer," three movie musicals
we'd guess had been chosen by Coco-
nut Grove's parking fairy: Fame (8/20),
Flashdance (8/27), and The Wiz (9/3).
For more details, call 305-372-0925 or
visit www.gusmancenter.org.
Just when you'd almost given up
waiting for Midtown Miami to start be-
coming that long-promised artsy, mixed-
use enclave full of unique, chic design
shops and more: Welcome to just such a
shop, new BT advertiser MIYO Home
Furnishings, at 47 NE 36th St. (305-
576-4172), across the street from the
Shops at Midtown Miami. The antithesis
of generic chain stores, MIYO (Make It
Your Own) is the concept of two interior


decorators who explore Asia, Europe,
Latin America for unique treasures, from
striking furniture to room-transforming
candles and promise an anecdote
behind every piece.
Sprains, fractures, minor bums, fevers:
Though usually not life-threatening, everyday
emergencies do need medical treatment. So
why do they always seem to occur at night
or on weekends, when your doctor's office is
closed? Fortunately the new Medi-Station
Urgent Care Center (9600 NE 2nd Ave.,
Miami Shores; 305-603-7650) is open every
day, with extended hours and no appoint-
ments necessary. The center is also well
equipped for diagnostic services EKGs,
X-rays, lab work. Check it out on August 7
from 5:00-8:00 p.m. at an open house featur-
ing free health screenings and refreshments.
If you were among the fans of the film
There's \ .i i,,. i,,. iboutMary who fell in
love with not just Cameron Diaz but her
character's Biscayne Bay neighborhood,
call new BT advertiser 1800 Club condo-
minium (1800 N. Bayshore Dr.; 305-531-
3300), which offers some of Miami's most
affordable direct waterfront condos. Aside
from having its own pool and fitness center,
the 458-unit building is just across the street
from Margaret Pace Park, which features
numerous outdoor sports facilities and, of
course, the bay viewable through units'
floor-to-ceiling hurricane glass or from spa-
cious balconies.
Everyone's born with music aptitude
(which, if developed, also improves kids'
math, science, language, and communi-
cation skills), says music educator Jane
Spinney. But the gift diminishes if not
nurtured between birth and age nine. And
she does mean "birth." Call new adver-
tiser Miss Jane's Music Studio (155
NE 96th St.; 305-757-6500) when the
labor pains start, and newborns can pretty


much drop in for their first group music
class on the way home from hospital.
New for this fall: private lessons in piano,
voice, guitar, flute, and violin for school-
age kids. (No discrimination against the
elderly here.)
Welcome also to new advertiser M
Power Project, along with congratulations on
the grand opening of the health club's super
new Miami Shores facility (9301 NE 6th
Ave.; 305-758-8600). Feeling the bum may
not seem like a great idea during Miami's
most scorching month, but no worries. M
Power takes a balanced approach to fitness,
in an environment conducive to exercising
comfortably at your own pace a policy that
applies not just to personal training sessions
but to a large variety of classes geared for
levels from po il" to "easy-does-it."
On some lazy-hot mornings, however,
even shuffling to the coffee machine seems
too much like a workout. Well, can you
manage stretching an arm out for your
phone? If so, The Girrrlz of Sandwich
(555 NE 15th St., 2nd floor; 305-374-
4305) will bring you breakfast in bed. Just
added to the menu, the moveable feasts
are bargain-priced at $7.50-$9.00 (for one)
to $13.50-$17 ('oi \ Loi. Featured fare:
fresh-baked ham-and-cheese croissants or
caper, tomato, and onion-garnished smoked
salmon on bagels, plus juice, coffee, and
homemade cookies.
Though summer is far from over, most
summer camps for kids are already winding
down. But not the weekly soccer camps at
MeteGoal Indoor Soccer (7616 NE 4th
Ct.; 305-756-1700 or Katie metegoal.
com). The five-day Monday-Friday ses-
sions (9:00 a.m. to noon for kids 4-6, 3:00
to 6:00 p.m. for ages 7-10), have been
extended to run through September 4.
While it's Miami Spice time again,
$35 dinners may not seem like such a


doable deal this year. But the Royal
Bavarian Schnitzel Haus (1085 NE 79th
St.; 305-754-8002) is offering an August
special you couldn't beat eating at home:
Monday through Thursdays 5:00-7:00
p.m. all blackboard specials, plus soup
or salad, are just $12.95 per person. And
Friday-Sunday, summer's unique German
BBQ continues: dark-beer-marinated
ribs, chicken, and steaks plus steckerl-
fisch (whole whitefish on a stick) cooked
over coals.
If you don't find the contemporary
furniture and/or accessories you like at
Beau Living's 4000-square-foot show-
room (8101 Biscayne Blvd.; 305-751-
1511), you'd better look off-planet. The
unusually varied stock ranges from cano-
pied outdoor daybeds to leather tissue
holders. A no-middleman relationship
with manufacturers enables the company
to pass on savings always, but right now
a special summer sale offers savings of
up to 50 percent off select items.
Speaking of savings, David Cohen
of Bagels & Company (11064 Biscayne
Blvd.; 305-892-2435) has added a fourth
coupon special to last month's three. For
eat-in diners: On Fridays, all half-pound
deli sandwiches are $5; on Tuesdays,
purchase an entree and beverage and get
another entree free; and every weekday,
all day, enjoy a two-egg breakfast with
potatoes and bagel for just $2.99. Take-
out customers score, too every day.
Buy a dozen bagels and get either an ad-
ditional dozen, a coupon good for a free
dozen, or a pound of cream cheese. So
bring in their BT ad and enjoy.



\-.01. rii,, 1 special coming up at your busi-
ness? Send info to bizbuzz@biscaynetimes.
com. For BT advertisers only.


I ADVERIS DIR


ART & CULTURE
Adrienne Arsht Center
Page 3
Bagua M
4736 NE 2nd Ave
305-757-9857
Page 43
I.D. Art Supply
Page 33
Miami Dade County
Page 39
Miami Shores Presbyterian
Church
Page 41
New Concept Video
Page 12
Seraphic Fire
Page 4


Shops at Midtown
Page 14
Trader John's Records &
Books
Page 33
AUTOMOTIVE
Miami Parking Authority
Page 22
Plaza Tire & Auto
Page 36
CLOTHING & JEWELRY
Dasani Jewels
Page 22
EDUCATION
Live! Music School
Page 40


Miami Shores Presbyterian
Church School
Page 40
Miss Jane's Music Studio U
155 NE 96th St
305-757-6500
Page 41
Take Stock in Children M
Page 20
FINANCIAL & LEGAL SERVICES
Allied Public Adjusters
Page 12
Law Offices of Jake Miller
Page 19
Law Offices of John
Lodge Penson
Page 29
Law Offices of
Steven K. Baird
Page 30


FURNITURE & ACCESSORIES HEALTH & BEAUTY


Beau Living
Page 11
Imagine Gifts
Page 6
LetterHeads
Page 43
Miami Beach Pebbles
Page 28
Midtown Consignment
Page 33
Miyo Home Furnishings l
47 NE 36th St
305-576-4170
Page 56
Planet Lighting
Page 30
Teak Only
Page 44


Dental Options
Page 31
Hiperfit
Page 15
Holistic Healing Center
Page 24
Humana Miami
Page 36
M Power Project M
9301 NE 6th Ave
305-758-8600
Page 10
Medi-Station Urgent Care
Center M
9600 NE 2nd Ave
305-603-7650
Page 9
MeteGoal Indoor Soccer
Page 39


Nails Etc.
Page 36
HOME IMPROVEMENT
All Florida Pool & Spa
Page 13
Causeway Computers E
1071 NE 79th St
786-264-6777
Page 12
ESR Florida Construction E
305-812-2716
Page 31
Guarantee Floridian
Page 25
MFS Roofing
Page 23
Palmer Roofing E
305-696-6767
Page 35


INSURANCE
Allstate Insurance
Page 35
PETS
4 Paws Only
Page 43
Adam's Veterinary Clinic
Page 43
Smiling Pets
Page 42
REAL ESTATE
1800 Club Condominium 5
1800 N Bayshore Dr
305-603-1800
Page 7
Miami Spaces
Page 24


Nancy Batchelor
Page 21
Tomlinson Realty Group
Page 5
Turnberry International Realty
Page 2
RESTAURANTS & FOOD
Bagels & Co.
Page 52
Bistro 82
Page 54
The Bridge Restaurant
Page 49
Buena Vista Bistro
Page 49
Dunkin' Donuts
Page 55


Fish Corner
Page 54
The Girrrlz of Sandwich
Page 48
Metro Organic Bistro
Page 51
Mike's at Venetia
Page 47
Moriano
Page 50
One Sumo
Page 53
Red Light
Page 53
Royal Bavarian Schnitzel
Haus
Page 55
Yogen Fr?z
Page 51


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com August 2009


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009










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COMMENTARY. MIAMI'S KING


Dead Sharks, Alien Presidents, and the Marlins' Latest Acquisition
SJust when you thought the summer months couldn't get any crazier


By Jack King
BT Contributor
Last month I opened this column
talking about the "silly season" in
Miami, referring to the political
machinations of our local politicians. But
it turned out that I seriously missed the
mark. The silly season should encom-
pass lots of others, here and all across
America, and should definitely include
the news media.
You know it's a slow news night in
Miami when the lead story on every tele-
vision station, blog, and Miami's Only
Daily is about a dead shark in the middle
of a street in Overtown. Worse, the story
became the lead, or at least the funny
closing piece, on countless news outlets
throughout the nation.
Channel 7 ("If it bleeds, it leads")
had the story first, although it is im-
portant to point out in the interest of
journalistic integrity that there was very
little blood involved. It didn't take long
for the rest of the news media to jump
on the story. Since it had already been
broadcast, I can only assume that, owing
to budget cuts at the other media outlets,
they now have no police scanners. They
were watching it on television. It's a
sad state of affairs when our local news
media cannot afford police scanners.
But local and state authorities
wasted no time jumping right in. They
immediately investigated (on camera,
no less) to determine if the nurse shark
is an endangered species. It isn't. After
the community breathed a sigh of relief
that no threatened, exotic creature had
been harmed, they turned to the potential
criminal act of leaving a fish in the street.


No doubt it has to be a felony akin to
throwing your McDonald's fish sandwich
out the window of your car.
Somehow pictures appeared out of
nowhere showing the shark riding on the
Metromover. Questions abounded as to
whether it had purchased a ticket or was
riding illegally. Don't ask about this part
of the story it's still under investiga-
tion by the local police and the State
Attorney's Office. (Note to news editors
and prosecutors: The Metromover isfree.
No fare required. And that applies to
sharks as well as humans.)
Granted this silly stuff makes Miami
look pretty bad, but the shark story was
soon overshadowed by an even crazier
story whether President Barack Obama


If these campaign contribution
continue right up to the election
Sanchez could become the highest
player in the Marlins organizat


was actually born in the United States.
Forget the fact that just about everyone
who has asked to see the president's birth
certificate has been provided a copy, and
that includes a number of right-wing
nIi\ s" outlets like WorldNetDaily.
No matter. They'll do anything
they can to keep the story alive. This is
thanks in no small part to a small group
of Republican representatives, led by Bill
Posey of Melbourne and nine others (six
from Texas), who want to make sure that
all presidential candidates can produce
proof of birth in a form that meets their
extremely high patriotic standards.


Most of these representatives are not
really that wacky, but this is a wonder-
ful way to keep their wacky base on the
reservation. The Republicans are losing
ground in new-voter registrations, and are
even losing people from their own party.
Right now about 40 percent of the elec-
torate is registered Democrat, 40 percent
independent, and 20 percent Republican.
Republicans seem to be crawling deeper
and deeper down the rabbit hole, so they
shouldn't be surprised when their reality
starts to become just a little distorted.
This whole Obama birth fable looks
like nothing more than a group of media
hounds trying to keep a story churn-
ing, thus maintaining themselves in the
spotlight on the Internet and talk radio.
Seems to be working.

ns Over the next few months,
,Joe leading up to the City of
t-paid Miami's November 3 mayoral
election, you will be seeing
lots of reports about who gave
how much money to whom. It's
always been important to iden-
tify who is actually paying the politicians'
bills and what they might want out of it,
but it has not always been easy to get that
information in a timely manner. For some
odd reason, many campaigns seemed to
lose track of their campaign finance records
just days before an election, then miracu-
lously recovered them shortly afterward. So
we often didn't get a complete accounting
until after the votes had been cast.
Fortunately we now have considerably
more transparency with campaign contri-
butions, as you can find them on the city's
Website. Unfortunately it is boring reading,
with thousands of names you wouldn't


recognize interspersed with the usual sus-
pects. But one part of it jumped out at me.
While looking at the campaign
contributions to mayoral candidate Joe
Sanchez, I couldn't help but notice the
large number of them that were coming
from people associated with the Florida
Marlins, directly and indirectly. I'm no
Marlins expert, nor am I a math whiz,
but just those names I recognized who'd
written checks to Sanchez added up to
tens of thousands of dollars.
If this trend continues right up to the
election, Sanchez could become the highest-
paid player in the Marlins organization That
should give him the right to throw out the first
pitch when the new stadium opens in 2012.
And the second. And the third.

One loser in the Marlins' stadium
vote might very well be Commissioner
Michelle Spence-Jones. She essentially
sold her vote for the stadium to city
manager Pete Hernandez, who needed a
third vote for approval. What she wanted
was for the city to fund the Overtown/
Park West Community Redevelop-
ment Agency to the tune of $50 mil-
lion (money the city already owed the
CRA). The city manager agreed, and she
voted for the stadium. Unfortunately for
Spence-Jones, the city is now essentially
broke, having overspent its revenues
four out of the past five years. And this
coming year, revenues will be down an
estimated 30 percent. So good luck, Mi-
chelle, trying to collect your money.
Take a page out of the playbook of
Miami's old cracker politicians: Get the
money before you vote.

Feedback: letters(ibiscaynetimes.com


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COMMENTARY: WORD ON THE STREET


What qualities do you look for in a potential mate?


Compiled by Victor Barrenechea


BT Contributor


p


Brian Pifieyro
Student
Little Haiti
I like a nice butt, but the
face is the most important
to me, because you're
always going to be looking
at the face. The body is
just a plus. She can't be
smarter than me. She also
has to have worse taste
than me in everything so
I can show her cool stuff.
You have to have the upper
hand in a relationship. If
you don't have the upper
hand, you have nothing.


Stephanie Turchin
Store Owner
Wynwood
This is from somebody
who's been married 27
years: Honesty, loyalty,
respect, and integrity. My
husband is amazing. He's a
good man. I got lucky. It's
very difficult to find that.
I think you need to have
these qualities in order to
receive them. I've put 27
years into this. I live it day
by day and don't take it
lightly. It's all what you
put out there.


Ana Colon
Store Manager
Upper Eastside
Honesty. I think honesty is
basically everything in a
relationship. If you can't
feel comfortable saying
the truth, you're lying. If
you're not honest with
other people, you can't be
honest with yourself. You
don't know who the person
really is if they're not
honest. Loyalty is definite-
ly a plus. And humor too.
You have to be funny.


Danny Bratkowski
Student
Little Haiti
I look for an ambitious
person who is willing to
tolerate my habits. I guess
sometimes I party too hard
and I'm not always respon-
sible. I just need someone
who can put up with me.
I'm looking for someone
who's thoughtful enough
to know when I need help.
And I need someone who's
not serious at all because I
hate serious.


Nuno Grullon
Chef
Keystone
An independent woman
who doesn't like to watch
reality shows. Reality
shows are not real. Reality
is on the Discovery Chan-
nel. She has to be indepen-
dent in the sense that we
could both hold our own
financially, so if I pass
away, she doesn't have to
stress about money. And
a girl who is into music,
because music is the way
to wake up the soul.


Lauren Turchin
Store Manager
Wynwood
I look for a sense of
humor. I do. You have to
have a sense of humor.
Otherwise it doesn't
work. The longer you're
with that person, looks
fade and all you're left
with is personality. I look
for good teeth too, be-
cause that's the one thing
that sticks out the most
when you're looking at
your partner.


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COVER STORY


Ti d c m e in ,n D e a
The dttk and stdn atthe .s.;:.
The dance master in motion: Derek Mellman and student at the studio.


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Dance
Continued from page 1

inconspicuous at the Colonial Shopping
Center on W. Dixie Highway and 125th
Street, where the President Supermarket
serves as an anchor for businesses like
Hawaii Nails, Super Deals, and Perfect
Finish Hair.
This being a Saturday, the weekly
evening group lesson and dance party
are just a few hours away. The caterer
bearing dinner is soon expected. And
while Mellman chats with a visitor, he
casts an eye toward the door, waiting for
Tina Mullen, scheduled for a
late-afternoon lesson.
"Come back for the show," The mi
he urges as Mullen, a tidy hair, I
brunette, arrives. There is a pe
people,
twinkle in Mellman's eye as
fro
he shepherds Mullen over
to Sharon Butler, who has
finished her lesson with the
engaged couple. "Make sure you're here
by 9:00 p.m.," he admonishes.
After the sun sets and the sky darkens,
the stifling heat releases its grip and a
breeze picks up, making for a pleas-
ant evening. Dancemasters is likewise
transformed. Under red lights, men in
slacks and women in skirts and sequined
dresses sit at tables arranged around
the 3000-square-foot, hardwood dance


floor. An upbeat instrumental version
of "B1same Mucho" plays on the sound
system. The mirrored walls reflect plenty
of gray hair, but also a wide seam of
younger people, both black and white,
ranging from their early 20s to mid-40s.
Over at a table, Tina Mullen sits
with a group of well-acquainted regu-
lars. Following her earlier lesson, she
has changed into a black halter top and
patterned skirt. Mullen is the executive
director of the South Florida Golf Foun-
dation and lives in nearby Biscayne Park.
She's been coming to Dancemasters for
several years. "I was going somewhere


rrored walls reflect plenty of gray
)ut also a wide seam of younger
e, both black and white, ranging
im their early 20s to mid-40s.


else," she says, "but everybody said,
'You have to go to Derek's, the people are
nicer, the music is better.' And it is. I've
tried every other place in South Florida."
A Roberto Carlos number comes on
and the floor begins to fill with dancers.
Mullen, who is in her 50s, watches
as friends greet one another. There are

Continued on page 16


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com August 2009


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009






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COVER STORY

Dance
Continued from page 14

Paula Liu and Robert Archambault, re-
spectively an insurance agent and retired
general contractor. Liu wears a bright,
coral-colored dress. Archambault is tall
and slim. The couple, she in her 50s, he a
few years older, met at Dancemasters and
married last year. "You just start danc-
ing," Liu says, "and then you get to know
a little bit about each other."
Archambault dances away with
one of the couple's friends. He holds
his head and back straight, in the style
many people know from watching tele-
vised competitions.
Richard lanni, a professional singer
from Fort Lauderdale, walks in and greets
everyone with a sparkling smile. Ianni,
who has worked in venues from Broadway
to cruise ships, settled here in part because
he simply loves to dance. "I think one
of the biggest things about deciding on
South Florida is the dance community," he
says. "I don't know any other place that
has the dancing that South Florida does."
He changes into his dancing shoes as he
prepares to take to the floor. "This is a
wonderful community," he adds. "Every-
body dances with everybody else." And
he's soon away with a female friend. His
style is less formal than Robert Archam-
bault. He leans toward his partner, ardent
and attentive.
And then it's a kaleidoscope of chang-
ing partners, couples who ebb and flow
in fluid but formal intimacy, sometimes
lasting no longer than a song. Other pairs
clearly have danced together for years.
It's not a pickup place, but people do
meet each other. Sometimes it works out,
sometimes it doesn't. As one regular puts it:
"There has been romance, there have been
breakups, there have been sorrows."
After a few dances, Mellman grabs a
microphone and addresses the crowd. "We
have two birthdays tonight," he announces.
"And we also have cake and champagne."
With that, Mellman and Butler, the dance
teacher, take the floor alone.
They've danced together for two
decades, and their West Coast swing
is effortless. Now they're moving to a
bouncy tune by the Love Dogs, a bluesy
group with a pumped-up horn section.
The groove is definitely on.
Suddenly Tina Mullenjumps up and
strides onto the dance floor, surprising
everyone by joining Mellman and Butler,
Continued on page 17


Richard lanni: "This is a wonderful community. Everybody dances with everybody else."


K

^w44


'C -
.. .l
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There really are such things as dancing shoes. Men's soles are suede.


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com August 2009


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August 2009







COVER STORY


Lunie William: "It's very clean and peaceful, and you feel safe."


A smattering of celebrity photos, but many more of Mellman with various partners, including his late wife Sari.


Dance
Continued from page 16

putting her hands on Butler's shoulders
and mirroring her steps. What was she
thinking? Was the music too much for
her to keep still?
But wait! In a moment it's clear. This
is a choreographed, three-way, West
Coast swing. Mellman steps and turns -
over, under, and around both women. So
that k why he earlier had shooed away his
visitor Mullen was there to put a last
bit of polish on their routine.
Everyone catches on, and soon
they're clapping and roaring their ap-
proval. It's a great act, Cabaret with a
pinch of cruise-ship kitsch.
The Love Dogs' horn section wails,
the dancers step lively, the aroma of
savory roasted chicken wafts from a
buffet table, and champagne and cake are
to come. Another Saturday evening at
Dancemasters is under way, and you just
know it's going to be good.






That Saturday evening included
more than 130 people in the second-floor
studio typical for summer, which is
somewhat slower than the winter season,
when both Canadian and U.S. snowbirds
swell the ranks. Dancemasters, how-
ever, stays busy all year, and virtually
every day. Parties are Wednesdays and
Saturday. Group lessons, also offered
on Monday, always precede the parties.
Mellman, Butler, and other teachers give
private lessons, which cost $65 less
for a series. For $12 a dancer can attend
a group lesson and the party; $60 per
month covers all group lessons and all
parties.
The 5000-square-foot studio is quiet
on an early Wednesday afternoon, and
Mellman graciously offers to give a
visitor a salsa lesson. His grip is strong
but not overpowering. Dancing, his face
lights up, though surely he must have
shepherded thousands through these first
steps. "Fast, fast, slow," he says. He's
patient, and in a few minutes, his partner
is doing a credible salsa. "That's it!" he
says encouragingly.
With his enthusiasm and his skill
as a teacher, it's no wonder Mellman's
business remains profitable even after 33

Continued on page 18


August 2009 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


~
~


August 2009


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com







COVER STORY


Dance
Continued from page 17

years. He opened Dancemasters in 1976
and has been in the same location ever
since. "It was successful from day one,"
he recalls. Over the years, of course, the
customers and the neighborhood have
changed. His Jewish clientele, which
once predominated, now accounts for
about 30 percent of the dancers. Mean-
while, Hispanic and Haitian dancers,
from Kendall to West Palm Beach, have
become regulars. On the dance floor, you
hear German, Russian, Spanish, and
Kreyol. Today, Mellman says, "It's a
ballroom for many cultures."
Cultural diversity comes naturally to
Mellman, born to Russian Jewish parents
who emigrated to the United States. They
settled in Cincinnati, where his father
worked in the wholesale clothing busi-
ness. The four Mellman boys, like many
children of immigrants, grew up as all-
American kids. "I was a star athlete all
my life," Mellman recounts. "It was just
innate to me." He went to the University
of Cincinnati on a swimming and diving
scholarship, and studied to be a physical-
education teacher.
Another part of his education
involved visits to Miami. "I used to
vacation here," he says, "and I saw how
much girls liked guys who could dance."
In fact his first professional gig was at
the Casablanca hotel on Collins Avenue
in Miami Beach. "The floor used to rise



Dancemasters' regulars are an ec
mix, ranging from doctors to ret
policemen to politicians to artist!
college students.



up," he marvels. He taught salsa, mambo,
and the pachanga, one of the dance rages
of the late 1950s and early 1960s, when
Americans went wild for all things Cuban
and Latin.
Though his brothers urged him to
join their successful scrap metal busi-
ness, young Derek had found his calling.
He moved to Miami, where he was soon
hired by a local Arthur Murray dance
studio franchise. But he wanted his own
business.
"I knew I had the talent and the back-
ground," he says. He also had the timing.
He opened Dancemasters at the dawn
of the disco era, and soon the music of


'jlE APP1
0-~B


Tina Mullen: "Everybody said, 'You have to go to Derek's, the people are


Gloria Gaynor, the Village People, and
the Bee Gees swept the nation. "For a
good six or eight years I taught nothing
but disco," he says. "I really capitalized
on that."
Not long after opening the
lectic studio, he met his future wife
ired Sari at Dancemasters, of
and course. Together they built and
expanded the business, which
allowed them to buy a nice
home and put their three sons
through college. Sadly, six
months ago Mellman lost Sari to a swift-
moving cancer.
As disco ascended, profitably for
Dancemasters, ballroom dancing with
its foxtrots, waltzes, and even the sexy
salsa waned. "Latin bands couldn't
get jobs," Mellman says. But slowly that
changed, and over time an eclectic mix
of people made their way to Dancemas-
ters and stayed. The regulars now
range from doctors to retired police-
men to politicians to artists and college
students. The popularity of television
shows like DoL.I,. i,, ,, ai the Stars and
So You Think You Can Dance has lured
even more beginners eager to learn. And


unlike some genre-oriented studios, at
Dancemasters they have an opportunity
to learn the gamut of styles.






Dancing has always been strong in
South Florida, even as dance crazes came
and went across the rest of the country.
Julie Malnig, professor of dance history
at New York University and author of
Dancing Till Dawn: A Century ofExhibi-
tion Ballroom Dance, notes that informal
"social dancing" is a relatively
recent phenomenon, encouraged
by early 20th-century feminism, The
the emergence of urban culture, Amer
the birth of ragtime and other cher
syncopated music, and the ali
increasing popularity of night-
clubs and restaurants. "You had
this culture of nightlife, where
people were coming out to dance," Malnig
says. "There was much more public display
of this kind of social dancing."
Allen Darnel, a longtime Houston-
based dance teacher who has also


nicer, the music is better.'And it is."

authored books on dancing, adds that
the rise of the big bands in the 1930s,
plus the explosive popularity of Arthur
Murray brought out even more people
to dance. "Arthur Murray," he says,
"created dance studios where the ordi-
nary person could learn how to dance
and go to the big ballrooms where
Tommy Dorsey and other big bands
were playing."
In South Florida, handsome young
dance teachers were to be found at resort
hotels like the Fontainebleau and Eden
Roc, says Darnel, who himself taught for
a year in the 1980s at The Breakers hotel


influx of Cuban and other Latin
rican immigrants, many of whom
ish dancing, helped keep dance
ive and lively in South Florida.



in Palm Beach. "Even in the 1930s, they
had dance teachers teaching the tourists
how to do the mambo and the rumba."

Continued on page 19


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com August 2009


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009







COVER STORY


Dance
Continued from page 18

The influx of Cuban and other Latin
American immigrants, many of whom
cherish dancing as an integral part of
their culture, helped keep dance alive and
lively in South Florida.
Malnig attributes the current surge in
dance's popularity in part to nostalgia by
those who grew up in the 1940s and 1950s,
plus interest from younger Baby Boom-
ers. "I think there is still a sort of romantic
appeal," she says. "When the revival first
happened, people just liked going back to
contact dancing as opposed to rock-and-roll
or disco dancing." Today's emphasis on
healthful exercise has also prompted people
of all ages to seek out dance studios. In ad-
dition, the appeal can be seen as a reaction
to workdays often spent in the company of
electronic devices. "With increasingly busy
lives, people are working more and more
in isolation," Malnig says. "Dancing offers
the individual contact people are really
yearning for."
Back at Dancemasters, most people
aren't thinking about trends. They may
be gazing at a wall of photos depicting


Dancing offers the individual contact people are really yearning for."


the history of both Derek Mellman and
the studio. Here Mellman clowns with
Matt Damon, whom he taught for the
Bourne movies. Here he's laughing it up
with Harrison Ford. A younger Mellman
in a bullfighter's outfit dances what must
have been a steamy paso double.


They also could be gathering near
a shoe boutique Mellman opened eight
years ago, filled with red, gold, and silver
high heels, plus men's shoes with suede
soles, cobbled especially for dancing.
("You slip on leather and you stick on
rubber," Mellman explains.)


And they definitely are changing into
those dance shoes, greeting friends, and
getting ready for their dance party. If
people like Lunie William are any indica-
tion, Mellman need not worry about
attracting attendees.
Earlier the 21-year-old William, who
has been coming to Dancemasters for the
past few years, was partnered with teacher
Hugues Napoleon as he led a group class.
Despite the hour-long workout, William
was ready for more dancing.
"I started three years ago," she recalls.
"I did my own research. I was looking
for a place so badly. It's very clean and
peaceful, and you feel safe." Dancing at
Dancemasters, she adds, is the perfect an-
tidote to her intense schedule of Miami-
Dade College nursing classes and her
work at a mortgage company. "It's really
relaxing," she says. "It's where I take out
my stress."

For more information about Dancemas-
ters classes, call 305-893-3010 or visit
www. dereksdancemasters. cor


Feedback: letters@ibiscaynetimes.com


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August 2009






NEIGHBORHOOD CORRESPONDENTS: MIAMI SHORES


Out With the Manicured Lawn
And in with landscaping for wildlife


By Jen Karetnick
BT Contributor

I don't know about yours, but our
lawn is a wreck. First there was
the drought and the watering
restrictions. Then came the prolific
rains and floods. After that a hail
of mangoes pummeled the ground.
Now we have the detritus that comes
after the trees have shed their harvest
- dried-up mango stems, the dead
branches. To top it off, the canopies
of our mango, avocado, sapodilla, and
live oak trees about 24 all told -
are so dense they block anything from
growing beneath them.
All this makes for a very patchy
yard. We have a lot of pure dirt where
there once was grass, the landscape
version of male-pattern baldness.
Given that my husband and I have
an acre, replacing the grass via sod
would be really expensive. We don't
have the money, and quite frankly, we


don't have the inclina-
tion. The last time we
did so, on our swale,
Miami Shores Public
Works managed to
eat about $800 worth
of it from where our
gardeners (and some-
times other peoples'
gardeners) dump their
organic debris.
As for using grass -
seed, when the thunder -
and rain coordinate .
like a drum circle, I .
watch puddles that ~i "
look more like ponds accumulate under
my office window, and realize seeding
would be, pardon the pun, a washout.
Besides, I have a better idea: land-
scaping for a certified wildlife refuge.
The first step in creating such a refuge
involves reducing lawn turf. According to
the University of Florida Wildlife Exten-
sion article "Landscaping Backyards for


Wildlife: Top Ten Tips for Success," a
mowed grass lawn "is like concrete to most
species of animals. It offers very little food
or cover.... By simply not mowing, you
will be creating shelter and food for many
animal species."
Naturally Miami Shores Village is
not going to allow any of us to simply
stop mowing our lawns. (I remember


all too clearly the fines imposed on our
closing costs because the former hom-
eowner had quit caring for the prop-
erty months before we moved in.) But
we can reduce turf in a multitude of
other ways, including planting native
groundcover or creating rock gardens.
Now instead of bald spots, I see places
for sundials and birdbaths.
In addition to reducing mowed
lawn areas, the main precepts of main-
taining a wildlife-friendly environment
are simple. Provide food for birds and
animals by planting bushes that bear
berries or nectar-producing flowers,
which attract bees, birds, caterpillars,
and butterflies. You can also hang seed,
nut, and suet feeders.
Give wildlife a place to raise their
young via groundcover vertical layer-
ing (plants and shrubs of different sizes
throughout the yard). Offer shelter
through rock walls, hedges, bird houses,

Continued on page 21


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August 2009


Wye '^







NEIGHBORHOOD CORRESPONDENTS: MIAMI SHORES


Wildlife
Continued from page 20

and bat boxes. Allow water for bathing
and drinking by way of pools, fountains,
and bird baths. Go green by reducing the
use of chemicals, gas mowers, and pes-
ticides remember, birds and bats eat
insects. Compost, mulch, conserve, and
catch water with rain barrels. Destroy
nonnative plants.
I think you'll be surprised, as I was,
to realize how many requirements you
might already meet. For instance, with
the prevalence of fruit and nut trees
around here, we provide plenty of food.
We've never used fertilizer, so we're
good on the green. We have an area of
the yard filled with spreading overgrowth
we've always simply referred to as "the
jungle" that's where I've found kittens
over the years, so I guess it's appropri-
ate for breeding. We have huge chunks
of calcareous stones in piles and walls,
left over from excavations needed for ad-
ditions to the house. The only elements
we'll have to add to qualify for certifica-
tion are the water ones, and perhaps a bat
and owl box or two.


Just so you know, though, certifica-
tion isn't mandatory. It doesn't get you a
tax break or anything of monetary value,
really. In fact it might actually cost you
money to meet the requirements. A do-
it-yourself pond kit can run $1400, for
example. On the other hand, installing a
bird bath takes only $50 or so.
Indeed, landscaping for wildlife ap-
peals to me in less tangible ways, and the
rewards are that much greater. Simply
put, I have a love of the beasties, both
wild and domestic, but I'm too much a
softy to be a rescuer. Every time I've
tried to save and/or foster an animal, I've
kept it. Creating a wildlife refuge out of
my backyard seems an ideal solution:
I can "house" more birds and animals
naturally without having to literally give
them a home.
Keep in mind that I'm not turning my
yard into a retreat for feral cats (neighbors,
insert sigh of relief here). Cats and dogs,
whether pets or strays, kill or scare off
other species and work against turning
your backyard into such a haven.
If you decide to go the certification
route, several programs are available that
will help you get started on your backyard


or even your balcony, whether you rent or
own. For instance, the Humane Society has
an arm called the Urban Wildlife Sanctu-
ary Program (https://gateway.hsus.org/
uwsp/). It costs $25 to join as an individual
home, and when you qualify, you receive a
certificate, a sign for your yard, and a decal
for your window.
The National Wildlife Federation will
also be delighted to help you create an
official Certified Wildlife Habitat (http://
www.nwf.org/gardenforwildlife/create.
cfm). This one is more kid-friendly (http://
www.nwf.org/kidsgardenforwildlife/), so if
planning this kind of project is something
that appeals to you as a family activity, I
recommend starting here.
Because of our unique climate, how-
ever, you might receive better advice from
local agencies. Sydney Park Brown, author
and horticulture specialist at the Univer-
sity of Florida, recommends beginning
with Certification Programs for Florida's
Backyard Habitats (www.nsis.org/garden/
backyard-certification.html), which in
turn will link you to two Florida-based
programs, Florida Backyard Landscapes
for Wildlife (www.wec.ufl.edu/extension/
landscaping/fblw) and Florida Yards and


Neighborhoods, which is "designed to
educate homeowners and other community
members about the techniques and benefits
of Florida-Friendly Landscaping with the
help of nine key principles" (http://fyn.ifas.
ufl.edu/).
Each one of those nine principles -
Right Plant, Right Place; Manage Yard
Pests Responsibly; Attract Wildlife; and
Recycle among them is accompanied
by a few pages of easy-to-follow advice.
The Florida Backyard Landscapes
for Wildlife program, administered by
the Florida Wildlife Extension, is the
most inexpensive only $5 and per-
haps the most extensive, recommending
books and articles on everything from
identifying nonnative plants to bird-
watching to getting your town certified.
That's right. Not only can you landscape
your backyard for wildlife, you can do it
for your school, your park, your busi-
ness, your entire neighborhood. Should
Miami Shores choose to go that green
route, it would be the first and only com-
munity in all of Miami-Dade County to
be certified as a wildlife-friendly town.

Feedback: letters(@biscaynetimes.com


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NEIGHBORHOOD CORRESPONDENTS: BELLE MEADE


Local Legal Eagle Makes Good
Jesse Diner, a truly honest attorney, now heads the Florida Bar


By Frank Rollason
BT Contributor

On June 26, my wife and I, along
with some neighborhood friends
from Morningside, trekked up to
Orlando for the swearing-in of our dear
friend Jesse Diner as the new president
of the Florida Bar. Jesse is one of our
almost home-grown locals, as he was a
resident of Morningside for more than 27
years. I first met him when I was work-
ing for the City of Miami and he and a
couple of other Morningside residents
came to me seeking assistance with land-
scaping problems for their street barri-
cades, installed to cut down on vehicular
traffic tearing through Morningside.
I knew who he was because he served
on the pension board for Miami's police
officers and firefighters, but I'd never dealt
with him directly. The contingent from
Morningside was led by Patrick McCoy,
aided by Jesse along with Alyce Robert-
son, who now serves as the executive


director of Miami's
Downtown Devel-
opment Authority.
(They're damn lucky
to have her!)
The group was
very frustrated in
dealing with the city
(can you imagine
that?) over promises
not kept to assist the
Morningside Civic
Association in their
quest to beautify the
barricades. It seems
the plants could
not get a foothold
because pedestrians
and bike riders just
trampled whatever
was being planted. There was no method of
keeping people "off the grass," so to speak.
I, not being a Morningside insider,
suggested that we place temporary chain-
link fences through the middle of each


barricade supplied
by the city until
the plants had a
chance to become es-
tablished, and remove
them later. This
is where Jesse the
r attorney explained
to me what a dumb
ass I was, but in the
most eloquent terms,
because I didn't
realize that Morning-
r side was an historic
neighborhood, and
you couldn't install
chain-link fencing
anywhere for what-
ever reason. Heaven
forbid!
We worked around those rules and
pushed it through the Historic Pres-
ervation Board on a temporary basis,
with the promise that the city would
remove the fences one year from the


date they were installed. I had only
held the position of assistant city man-
ager for a short time at that point, but
already I was struck by the number of
individuals and groups in this case
the preservation board who asked,
"How do we know the city will remove
the fences in one year? They never do
what they say they're going to do!"
What a reputation for a local govern-
ment to have.
But the fences went in, the plants
grew and thrived, and one year later I
had a crew from public works remove the
fences. In the meantime, however, our
friendship with Jesse and his wife Adele
grew. We would get together and discuss
various city issues. I loved to hear Jesse's
take on the incredible period we went
through in the late 1990s and early
2000s, when a number of our leaders in
the city administration were convicted of
various crimes and packed off to prison.

Continued on page 23


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NEIGHBORHOOD CORRESPONDENTS: BELLE MEADE


Jesse
Continued from page 22

The high and the mighty fell. Cesar
Odio, Miller Dawkins, Bert Hernandez,
Don Warshaw, and others checked into
the Gray Bar Motel, while the political
scene was just as raucous: the mayoral
fiasco between Xavier Suarez and Joe
Carollo, the hiring and firing of multiple
city managers in a very short period of
time, and more. Even I had my turn as
city manager, and lasted 27 days until
I was terminated because I wouldn't fire
police Chief Don Warshaw, who himself
later became city manager. Eventually
he ended up in jail for misuse of the chil-
dren's fund Do the Right Thing.
It was a crazy time, and through it all
Jesse Diner was there as a sounding board.
We would sit around his dining room table
with others not to be mentioned, jaws
agape as the story dujour unfolded.
But this story is about Jesse and why
it's important to us as Upper Eastside
residents that a man like him now sits
in such a powerful position at the state
level. Jesse is honest and he is a lawyer.
Some would say that's an oxymoron,


but enough of the lawyer jokes. There
is a story told about Jesse when he was
a youngster no, it doesn't involve a
cherry tree, but it's almost as good.
Seems Jesse's parents were taking
a train trip on which children under the
age of seven rode for free. The boy's par-
ents coached him to say he was six years
old just in case anyone asked. When the
conductor came by, he casually asked


Severe sanctions can be impose
lawyers' misdeeds. Jesse will be s
the tone for what is expected of t
who truly serve the public as attoi



Jesse his age and the youngster dutifully
replied, "I am six now, but when I get off
the train, I'll be seven again!"
That pretty much sums up how Jesse
responds today, and will be how he re-
sponds for the rest of his life. At the cere-
mony where Jesse was sworn into office,
the accolades kept flowing. It seems that
everyone who'd dealt with Jesse over


the years had good things to say and a
little story about how he'd touched their
lives including an incident involving
a Speedo swimsuit, but we shall not go
into that here. As penance, though, we
may force him to don his Speedo and
vacation in Canada just to get even if
you get my drift.
As Florida Bar president, Jesse has
several noble goals in his sights, number
one being increased funding for
the judicial branch of govern-
d for ment so the average citizen
has access to the courts. As
getting
Jesse puts it: "If you don't
hose
have an adequate court system
rneys. in a civil society, it is chaos.
How else can people solve
their disputes?"
Another of his goals is
to bring the court-filing system into
the computer age, e-filing as it's called.
He will push for e-filing to become
mandatory statewide, with the goal of
eliminating or at least greatly reducing
the enormous amount of paperwork the
courts now generate.
Finally and most important to me
will be his push for more pro-bono


work by his fellow attorneys for those
unable to afford representation. For our
system of justice to work, it is impera-
tive that access be truly equal across
the board. Jesse and his wife are big
advocates of expanding this practice
throughout the state.
Jesse will be good for us because he
will always be Jesse. Keep in mind that
many of our politicians are also lawyers,
and their actions are accountable before
the Florida Bar. So such scandals as Mi-
ami's fire-fee fiasco, which involved not
only our mayor but also our city attorney
allegedly misrepresenting the so-called
affected class, eventually would come
before the Florida Bar to be held ac-
countable. Severe sanctions can be and
often are imposed for such misdeeds.
Jesse will be setting the tone for what
is expected of those who truly serve the
public as attorneys.
Congratulations, my boy, and good
luck to you. It will be a hectic year, but
as we all know, if you want to get some-
thing done, give it to a busy person. Jess
will be very busy indeed.

Feedback: letters @biscaynetimes.com


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NEIGHBORHOOD CORRESPONDENTS: BISCAYNE PARK


Creatures Mythical and Real


Herewith, a tale so weird it could 't be true


but was!


By Wendy Doscher-Smith
BT Contributor
The Chupacabra. Now there was a
fine monster worthy of Miami. The
Puerto Rican-born Chupacabra
was a mythical "manpire" whose name in
Spanish translates roughly to "goat sucker."
Though reputed as a traveling' man, Chu-
pacabra likes to visit Miami, leaving his
customary fang marks on goats and other
not-so-lucky mammals. Chupa, as his fans
and followers nicknamed him, stands in
contrast to the garden-variety villains who
regularly torment Miami residents (corrupt
politicians, defiant road-ragers, under-
cooked Media Noches), without the likes
of which Miami-Dade County would make
far fewer international headlines and suffer
maybe half as many water-cooler jokes.
Chupa garnered attention because,
like his brethren Bat Boy, Sasquatch,
Nessie, and the Jersey Devil ("horselike
head, long neck and tail, leathery wings,
cloven hooves, blood-curdling scream,"


according to Wikipedia), he gives great Unlike Chupa and other globally cel-
story. Well, as luck would have it, I ebrated creatures, this piece of lore does
recently heard another great story right not involve any living, prowling mon-
here in Binghamton, New York, our sters, unless you include human, living
home away from Biscayne Park, or as relatives of mine. And it solely existed
others might know it, the Merciless as familial urban legend that is until
Frozen Tundra (MFT), which exists in a recently, when, in an attempt to disprove
parallel universe, it, I ended up proving it.


So at the risk of sounding like I mar-
ried into the biggest redneck er, people
of rural descent who work in the sun -
family in the hemisphere, I will share it.
It goes like this: When my husband
Jeremy was five-years-old, he and Family
Smith acquired Catty, his first pet. When
he was ten, Family Smith packed up and
moved from Rhode Island to upstate New
York. While they looked for a house, they
spent the summer in a camper on the prop-
erty of Uncle Bob, in a rural town called
Apalachin, which is west of Binghamton,
where Jeremy and I currently live, and east
of where his family bought a house that
fall, in Owego.
During this summer, and shortly
after the move, Catty went missing. As
Jeremy remembers it, Catty, by then
eight or ten years old, did not take kindly
to Family Smith going on vacation.
Described by Jeremy as a "tough
street cat that didn't put up with any

Continued on page 25


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August 2009






NEIGHBORHOOD CORRESPONDENTS: BISCAYNE PARK


Creatures
Continued from page 24

guff," Catty wouldn't let many people
pet her. In fact only Jeremy could pick
her up without getting scratched. But I
guess even street cats (Catty had been
homeless) don't like to be surprised.
One day Catty, a large, meaty, black-
and-white outdoor feline, wandered
off. The search was on, but to no avail.
Jeremy feared she had been run over.
And that was, for the time being, the end
of the story. Until 20 years later, when
Uncle Bob decide to redo his porch. And
there lay Catty. She was under the house,
where she apparently once went explor-
ing. Or to die. Nobody knows.
Uncle Bob was so proud he found her
that he called the Smith clan to tell them
the happy news. However, here is where
it gets a little weird. Catty had been lying
on her side when she expired. Uncle Bob
being, well, Uncle Bob, decided to pose
Catty in a standing position, which wasn't
that difficult because Catty was well pre-
served mummified, if you will.
This story was first told to me over
dinner at a Thai restaurant. I persisted


with questions despite protests from
Uncle Bob's wife Sylvia, and while Bob's
son Mike cringed, elbows stiff on table,
hands crossed. Jeremy and his parents
just laughed.
It occurred to me that Uncle Bob was
not above playing me, the curious city
girl. I mean, there were also stories about
a post-World War II goat feast and a
mention of a mysterious homing pigeon.
Those I could sort of buy. But this? Still
I listened with rapt attention, my noodles
gone cold.
"So Catty is still there then, under
your house?" I asked.
"I guess," came Uncle Bob's re-
sponse and stoic look.
"Bullshit!" I coughed into my water
glass. "I wanna see her."
Chuckles erupted from around the
table, forks jabbed into curried chicken
chunks. However, I was undeterred.
One day recently Jeremy and I went
down to the house o' Catty. We went
to go wading in the creek (pronounced
"crick" by those who do not know any
better) to get stones. I swear. For our
garden. After sloshing about, I found
my way out of the "crick" (which I


mistakenly thought was simply a smaller
version of a creek) and sat on the side
doorsteps. Then it occurred to me.
"I want to see Catty," I announced,
wiping my muddy hands on my jeans
and standing tall in my Pepto-Bismol
pink Wellingtons.
Mike, Jeremy's cousin, said he
wasn't sure Catty was still there. To
which I replied, "Where would she go?"
So he looked.
"There she is! Up against the wall, to
the right!" he shouted.
That was all I needed.
I squatted down, careful to not
squish treasured perennials, cupped my
hands, and peered through the white
slats that crisscrossed between the
bottom of the house and the ground.
It was dark under there, but I could
make out a dusty form. Then the form
came into focus. First the torso, then the
legs, and finally, as I pitched forward,
trying not to plunge through the lattice,
the head.
There was Catty. A rather large, flat-
tened Catty. Despite the fact that Jeremy
did describe Catty as a "large, burly"
cat, the mere size, the presence of this


mountain lion of a feline befuddled me.
But Mike, who is an archeologist, attri-
butes it to the decomposing process. Loss
of fluids equals a flatter surface. However,
he has no clue as to why she preserved so
well under the house. Nobody does. Once
you realize that the MUFT (Merciless
Unfrozen Tundra soon enough to return
to M-Frozen-T) plays by its own rules,
you learn to accept or at least expect that
things are often not as they seem or as they
should be.
In truth, Catty looked more like
some artifact that belongs in the
Museum of Natural History than that of
a house cat decomposing under a house
in rural upstate New York. The shrunken
head perched atop a somehow simultane-
ously bloated and emaciated body gave
Catty an almost comically skeletal look,
like a fictitious creature ripped from the
pages of an old Creepshow comics. No
matter. For however strange Catty may
have looked there, I can think of no
better place for her to spend the rest of
her days than under the house of people
who cared for her. RIP, Pancaked Catty.

Feedback: letters@tbiscaynetimes.com


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COMMUNITY NEWS


The Ultimate Ugly Neighbor

Now we know what happens when towering condos are built next to modest homes


By Christian Cipriani
Special to BT


Last month's BT cover story about
the creative possibilities of a
reimagined Edgewater ("Dirt &
Dreams," July 2009) drew its share of
praise and at least in theory sup-
port. (Full disclosure: I wrote the story.)
But for others, it was a painful reminder
of how much the area suffered at the
hands of overzealous developers and a
city government yearning for tax dollars.
This was the case for Edgewater resi-
dents Kathleen and Jaime Cuartas of 708
NE 26th St.
Their new 28-story neighbor has
continued to terrorize their single-family
home long after the last construction
crane came down.
In late 2005, major work began on
two sides of the Cuartas home. Onyx on
the Bay, a 118-unit luxury tower between
NE 25th and 26th Streets, was the brain-
child of Willy Bermello and Luis Ajamil,
of BAP Development, and Gustavo Mic-
uslitzki of Argentina's GGM Develop-
ers. (They referred us to Onyx's project
manager, who didn't return calls for com-
ment.) BAP is also behind the unrealized
50-story Onyx 2, which was to rise on
the bay at NE 28th Street right where


the BT suggested
someone build a
public marina.
Sitting in the
living room of
their pink 1920s
home, which they
had previously
rented out, the Cu-
artases sift through
four-inch-thick
binders of cor-
respondence with
politicians and
various department
heads, engineer-
ing reports, and a
mass of photos -
documentation of a
years-long struggle
to force the city
to do something


Because the Onyx condo was built at a higher
elevation, this is what happens when it rains.


about Onyx's code
violations, poor drainage, and debris.
In photo after photo, their prop-
erty itself looks like a construction site:
boards and cell phones crashing into
the roof, along with helmets, chunks of
cement, heavy steel parts, boards with
nails sticking out, and in one photo, a
hammer and the deep impression it left
in the grass. Here the couple's adult son


stands dwarfed by a fallen seven-foot
board, and in another, the crew's portable
toilets lean against the Cuartas's sag-
ging fence, just feet from their window.
(Jaime even has a video of workers
hosing them down and letting the water
drain onto their property.) Things fell,
damage was done, and the construction
crew would come by to patch it up.


The situation became so bad that the
middle-age couple moved in full-time
when their tenants threatened to sue over
unsafe living conditions. Their son's girl-
friend took to doing laundry out back in
a motorcycle helmet, and their grandchil-
dren once mistook flecks of cement on
the window for snow. And through it all,
the family kept notes and pictures of the
mess, even storing the most offending
and dangerous debris as souvenirs.
"I'm Colombian," says Jaime Cu-
artas, "and that's a Third World coun-
try. Even there they have nets around
construction sites to protect neighboring
properties from this sort of thing."
Kathleen Cuartas has an endless log
of e-mails to public officials begging
for safety enforcement, but most cor-
respondence went nowhere. The county
and state said it's the city's problem. And
each time, the city's response was: "The
developers said they would..." while
the developers replied, "The city said
we could..." Everyone pointed at one
another until Hector Lima, head of the
city's building department, summed it up
best in an e-mail: The contractors fix the
things they break and promise to be safe,
and besides, the building is almost done.

Continued on page 29


School Dazed in El Portal, Part 2

Charter school proponents are smacked down again, but still have one last chance


By Brandon Dane
Special to BT

The El Portal planning and zoning
board threw another wrench into the
works of MG3 Developer Group
during their July 15 meeting, and this time
MG3's plan to expand and convert the
Rader United Methodist Church prop-
erty into a charter school was probably
sunk. This past April, MG3 of Hollywood
began their efforts to transform the vacant,
58-year-old church into a 50-classroom
charter school with about 900 students.
Imagine Schools, a nonprofit organization,
would operate the facility. The proposal
was met with strong resistance from El
Portal residents concerned about possible
traffic congestion, litter, and crime in their
tiny village of 2500.


Likewise the planning and zoning
board, which is actually the elected
Village Council in another role, ques-
tioned whether MG3 could ask for a
needed zoning variance because the
company didn't actually own the prop-
erty at the corer of NE 2nd Avenue
and 87th Street. All they could show
was a contract to buy it from the Catho-
lic Archdiocese of Miami.
By the July meeting, MG3 repre-
sentatives had met twice with residents
in hopes of addressing their fears, but
residents and council members, sitting as
the planning and zoning board, remained
dubious. The question was whether the
board would recommend to the council
(themselves) granting a special exception
for the property and approving the site
plan to expand the building. According


to village manager Jason Walker, village
staff and the traffic consultant they hired
recommended denial of the site plan
but approval of the special exception -
but only if the number of students was
reduced to 470.
MG3's attorney, Ben Fernandez, as-
sured the board and assembled residents
that the original site plan had been
modified to reduce impacts on El Portal.
He also said the number of students had
been reduced to 750.
Educators from Imagine Schools in
Broward County explained how their fa-
cilities operated, contending there would
neither be discipline problems nor traffic
jams, and that the school would be an
educational asset to the community, es-
pecially to young families. As previously
reported in the BT ("School Dazed in El


Portal," July 2009), Imagine Schools is
the nation's largest and fastest-growing
charter organization, operating 72
schools in 13 states, with 18 in Florida.
El Portal villagers nonetheless remained
agitated. The main issue: feared heavy traffic
and concern that the traffic studies from the
village and MG3 were so conflicted. Mayor
Joyce Davis asked, "People are not coming
down on 2nd Avenue because the street is
closed. This is not a clear picture. How can
you use this traffic study?"
Attorney Fernandez attempted to
answer, but passed the question to MG3's
traffic-study consultant, Joaquin Vargas,
whose detailed technical response didn't
seem to satisfy anyone. That prompted El
Portal resident Jairo Ribero to interject,

Continued on page 29


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.comAugust 2009


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009







I YOU NOTICED


COMMUNITY NEWS


Bring on the Green

At long last, Boulevard landscaping resumes -with spectacular results!


By Erik Bojnansky
BT Contributor
The Florida Department of Trans-
portation is warning of lane
closures and flying dust, and
asks for your indulgence as the agency
commences "beautification" work along
Biscayne Boulevard between 67th and
87th streets. "We ask for your patience
and cooperation while this work is under
way, since planting and other project-
related work might require closing travel
lanes and sidewalks at various times and
locations," states an FDOT advisory sent
out at the end of July.
"Thankyou for your patience is a
standard thing to say to assure people that
we appreciate their cooperation," explains
FDOT spokeswoman Monica Diaz.
But patience may be in short supply
as some area stakeholders question the
quality of past work done along the Bou-
levard by FDOT.
Joseph Canale, a Bayside resident,
just wants to see something planted
in Miami's northern gateway already.
"Our communities have spent over ten
years dealing with the restoration of
Biscayne Boulevard," he says, nioiinlih
and months of traffic congestion during
construction, dust, dirt, noise, and we're
still waiting for completion."
While landscaping has been complet-
ed along other parts of Biscayne Boule-
vard, the stretch between 67th Street and
the Miami-Miami Shores border at 87th
Street resembles, in Canale's view, "a


Looking north from 69th Street: FDOT's decision to plant new "hyper-
growth" trees on the Boulevard has been widely praised.


desert. We're still waiting for our abun-
dance of sidewalk trees."
Diaz insists the "sidewalk trees" are on
the way. FDOT hired Miami-based Superior
Landscaping to plant 211 gumbo limbo, black
ironwood, live oak, royal palm, sabal palm,
and Montgomery palm trees along those 20
blocks. The project, which officially began
July 20 and is slated to be completed in spring
2010, also includes steel tree grates and those
loopy "decorative sidewalk patterns" inspired
by MiMo-era design
Fran Rollason, president of the MiMo
Biscayne Association, is glad FDOT will


be installing steel tree grates instead of
the concrete ones used in an earlier round
of landscaping work between 36th and
67th streets. Less than two months after
contractors Vila and Sons completed $1.5
million in work on that part of the Bou-
levard, Rollason was e-mailing city and
FDOT officials about cracked tree grates.
"They are definitely a tripping hazard,"
she warned Enrique Tamayo, a consulting
engineer for FDOT
The cracked grates, however, had
already become the problem of Miami's
Public Works Department. An agreement


between Miami and FDOT puts the respon-
sibility on the city to maintain the trees,
grates, irrigation, and lighting that FDOT
Installed. So far the city has replaced six
| broken grates at a cost of $3900. Public
2 Works director Stephanie Grindell says
Usher department "advised FDOT that there
is a design flaw. We have asked them to
CL redesign the tree grates."
FDOT's Diaz denies any defects in
the tree grates and blames inconsiderate
delivery drivers. "The concrete tree grates
were part of a coordinated effort to provide
a distinctive treatment within the historic
district," she says, referring to the MiMo
Historic District between 50th Terrace and
77th Street. "They are not defective for the
purpose they were intended that is, tree
grates within a sidewalk. There are 194 tree
grates on the project and only four have
broken. This is because trucks have driven
illegally on the sidewalk and broken them,
as well as sections of sidewalk."
For Dany Sebaaly, the tree-grate flap
is irrelevant. It's the landscaping that
matters to him. Four years ago Sebaaly
purchased a ground-floor retail space
in The Bank lofts at 8101 Biscayne
Blvd. Soon after he and his brother Hadi
opened their Beau Living furniture store
in 2007, FDOT began tearing up the
Boulevard in front of them. Not only did
FDOT remove what few trees had been
there, the construction disrupted vehicu-
lar traffic and ripped open sidewalks
for months at a time. "It was very bad,"

Continued on page 29


Village Place: Flush with Promise

Miami Shores spiffy new downtown lacks one critical thing: sewers


By Mark Sell
Special to BT
This past April, county construction
crews finished their work on NE
2nd Avenue in downtown Miami
Shores. After 18 months, the roadway
had its first coat of asphalt in 20 years,
improved drainage, wider sidewalks, and
a string of young live-oak trees. Village
crews had worked on the sidewalks and
landscaping as part of a $1.3 million
village beautification project. (The vil-
lage has a $12 million budget.) All that


work was setting the table for a new,
vibrant downtown, abrim with caf6s,
shops, galleries, bookstores, organic
markets, professional offices and
people. Village worthies have even
come up with a snappy name: Village
Place at Miami Shores.
And while NE 2nd Avenue, with
its many vacant storefronts and eerie
absence of pedestrians, may not yet be
fully beautified, change is in the humid
air. Medi-Station Urgent Care Center just
opened at 96th Street, an AT&T store
has opened two blocks north, next to the


Playground Theatre. And by the end of
August, veteran Miami Beach restaura-
teur Sean Saladino will open Miss Moo,
an ice cream and panini shop complete
with free Wi-Fi and outdoor seating, at
the busy southeast corer of 96th and NE
2nd Avenue.
Village Place, however, still lacks
the vital ingredient needed to transform
itself: sewers. Miami Shores is one of the
few municipalities in Miami-Dade that is
not tied into to the county's sewer system.
As every Shores resident and busi-
ness owner knows, it's all about septic


tanks, which have limited capacity to
process waste water. Various county and
state laws require a range of businesses
to have sewer hookups, among them
restaurants and many medical facilities.
Without sewers, a bustling Village Place
is not likely to materialize.
But perhaps -just perhaps the
stars are starting to align, largely because
of the determination of the husband-and-
wife team of Ruben and Gladys Matz.
The Matzes, who own three of the most

Continued on page 28


August 2009Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com







COMMUNITY NEWS

Village Place
Continued from page 27

strategic blocks along NE 2nd Avenue,
are gathering support to create a taxing
district for downtown property owners,
who would privately pay for the instal-
lation of sewers. (Intractable logistical
problems prevented sewers from being
installed during the reconstruction of
2nd Avenue.) "I am constantly getting
phone calls from good prospective ten-
ants and have to turn them away," says
68-year-old Ruben Matz, a Realtor who
bought into the area some five years ago
with Gladys, his wife of 44 years. "The
reason? No sewers. A doctor tried to
move into a mortgage broker's office but
the health department wouldn't let him."
Twenty years ago, 2nd Avenue property
owners, principally George Bennett and
Henry Everett, said no to sewers. Ben-
nett, who sold his building at 95th and
2nd Avenue to Matz in 2004, has since
changed his mind. Today he says yes. "The
new owners would like to have retail, and
I agree with them 100 percent. Sewers are
the only practical way to accommodate any
retail trade. I want them to succeed. You
know, I still have a stake in the property."
If the Great Recession seems an odd
time to harbor such ambitions, the Matzes
are betting that the present Darwinian
chur of layoffs, foreclosures, spooked
business lenders, and property vultures will
abate within two or three years. They be-
lieve this sleepy village within easy sight of
downtown Miami's thrusting skyscrapers
offers something unique in the middle of
one of America's densest urban concentra-
tions. And it has grown clear to the Matzes
and others that the system of downtown
septic tanks is not sustainable.
The Matzes have more than $11 mil-
lion invested in three blocks of property
from 95th to 98th streets, but they say


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The proposed sewer lines would run up and down the alleys, tunnel under
NE 2nd Avenue, and hook up with the county line on NW 3rd Avenue.


their real goal is to realize a certain
creative vision. "We don't just want
the rent. Downtown Miami Shores is a
labor of love for us," says Gladys Matz,
who, with her husband, founded the Exit
Shops chain of upscale clothing stores,
for which she served as creative direc-
tor. "We want a successful downtown
for the next generation to remember. I'm
excited about Miss Moo and the urgent
care center. Miss Moo is going to start
the whoop in traffic. You'll start to see
the strollers, the bicyclists, the people
who want ice cream after dinner. I am
reserving a space in the 9600 Building
for an organic food store. We're creating
'lifestyles' for all the vacant spaces. We
want everyone to enjoy this town, and we
can't realize our vision until the sewer
problem is taken care of."


Under their plan, the sewer lines
would run north and south under the rear
service alleys on either side of NE 2nd
Avenue between 94th and 99th streets.
The line would tunnel under 2nd Avenue
and run west to NW 3rd Avenue and 97th
Street, in an unincorporated area about a
block west of the village limits, where it
would tap into a major county sewer line
also used by Barry University. So far, the
Matzes say, they're getting an excellent
reception from their fellow property
owners, and "extraordinary" coopera-
tion from Miami Shores manager Tom
Benton and other senior staff.
Miami Shores itself would pay noth-
ing. The property owners would foot
the bill for the project by selling bonds
to construct the system, then taxing
themselves to retire the bonds over time.


Ruben Matz estimates the cost would be
Around $2 to $3 million, although past
estimates for sewer systems have run $6
million or more. Still, a $4 million bond
issue could be affordable when amor-
tized over 20 or 25 years among 12 or
15 property owners. Matz envisions this
special taxing district becoming a reality
in 12 to 18 months.
"After we sold Exit Shops," Ruben
says, "Gladys fell in love with the possi-
bilities of downtown Miami Shores. This
is an affluent community, with a chang-
ing demographic. It has so many families,
and a large gay community with double
earners with disposable income. I am
also optimistic that times will get better."
Sean Saladino hit upon the idea for
Miss Moo after observing the sea of
children who converged on the Miami
Shores Country Club for an Easter
egg hunt. The Matzes jumped at his
idea, choosing to rent to the fledgling
restaurant over blue-chip AT&T, which
instead opened its new store further up
the avenue. "These people are amazing,"
Saladino says of the Matzes. "They put
in a 900-gallon septic tank so I could
open. Usually landlords just make it the
tenant's responsibility."
Miami Shores Mayor Al Davis, fresh
from squirming through some painful
budget meetings, likes the idea of pri-
vately financed sewers for Village Place.
"I have no objection to what they're
doing," he says, "as long as it doesn't
cost the village any money."
Despite the challenges, the Matzes,
devout Jews who emigrated from Cuba,
are pushing ahead with a sense of mis-
sion. "I walk with God," says Ruben.
"Whatever is possible, you can do right
away. Whatever is impossible, takes a
little time."

Feedback: letters@(biscaynetimes.com


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August 2009







COMMUNITY NEWS

Green
Continued from page 27

Hadi Sebaaly says. "The Boulevard was
closed. We didn't have any business."
At least Beau Living survived. Other
businesses were less fortunate, says
Rollason, who helped create the MiMo
Biscayne Association to promote the
interests of the MiMo Historic District's
residents and business owners. "We
became incorporated in May 2007. By
that summer we started getting phone
calls," she remembers. How many


businesses closed down during the
reconstruction she can't say, but six died
within a single month. "It was pretty
bloody, I'll tell you."
Now that the construction is over,
Dany and Hadi Sebaaly say business
has improved at Beau Living. Dany is
optimistic that the Boulevard will flour-
ish, especially if FDOT delivers on its
promise of trees. "We need some shade.
It is very important," he stresses. "I'm not
sure what kind of landscaping FDOT is
planning to do here, but if it'll be similar


to Miami Shores, it'll definitely help."
In the meantime, Rollason's pri-
orities have shifted from aesthetics to
safety. "It will be nice when the trees
are in and everything is done," she
says, "but until it is a safer place, it's
going to be hard to make the commer-
cial district get to its potential."
By safety, Rollason means the
ability of pedestrians to cross the street
without the risk of being mowed down
by a speeding vehicle. Toward that
end, Upper Eastside activists have been


telling city, county, and state officials
about the need for FDOT to install
crosswalks and build medians.
FDOT is looking into it, Diaz says.
"We are conducting a pedestrian safety
and mobility study," she writes via
e-mail. "Until we are further along with
the study, we will not know which pedes-
trian enhancements are needed and which
ones are feasible. The study is expected
to be completed in September."

Feedback: letters(itbiscaynetimes.com


Neighbor
Continued from page 26

This has been, in a nutshell, the city's
building-boom position over the past five
years: The developers say their doing
the right thing, and we're making fast
progress here, so back off.
With Onyx finally finished, the Cuar-
tases replaced their roof and transformed
the backyard into a miniature paradise of
tropical plants, but their problems are far
from over. Reports from multiple engineers
who reviewed the site and building plans
agree that it has no underground tanks to
absorb rainfall, nor was it built to grade-
level. Onyx's property line, which encloses


two side of the Cuartas home, is one to
three feet higher. As a result, Miami's
torrential summer rain has been flooding
their yard and eroding the foundation of
their house. The condo developers even
drilled holes 30 feet up the west wall, so
even more water pours into the narrow gap
between the two properties.
In May 2009, the South Florida
Business Journal reported that Corus
Bank began foreclosure proceedings
on 41 unsold Onyx units. The bank's
attorney, Paul Shelowitz of Akerman
Senterfitt, didn't return calls for com-
ment. With too few units sold to even
start a homeowners association, and the
building going to the bank, it's unclear


who is overseeing the property's general
maintenance. The bank needs to get this
depreciating asset off its books as fast as
possible, so investing in improvements
probably isn't part of the plan.
With the building in receivership,
there's not much else for the Cuartases
to do, and few people left to whom they
can complain. Both Miami Commissioner
Linda Haskins and her District 2 successor
Marc Sarnoff have "forwarded" their com-
plaints to the building department over the
past several years, and only Commissioner
Tomas Regalado, now running for mayor,
personally responded with a promise to
help enforce the drainage issue. Whether he
will or even can remains to be seen.


The Cuartas's experienced and con-
tinue to experience the reality of being
regular citizens of little influence caught
between the well-greased gears of politics
and development. Much good came out of
the building boom, especially in Edgewater,
but wildly out-of-scale towers and fast-and-
loose oversight created a black mark on this
neighborhood that isn't going away. Maybe
next time the city will get it right, but for
residents like the Cuartas family, there isn't
going to be a next time. They're very close,
very big new neighbor is here to stay, and
every time it rains, they are reminded of
that immutable fact.

Feedback: letterst@biscaynetimes.com


School
Continued from page 26

"How dare you say there's not enough
traffic in this community. When the
church was open and there was a school
there, we had a nightmare."
Resident Joanie Hector, taking the
discussion in a different direction, asked,
"What benefit are we going to gain tax-
wise from this?"
The answer from village manager
Walker could not be precise because he


didn't know the exact sale price of the
property. Bc i\ ccIn 25 and 30 thousand
dollars," he said. (The Archdiocese
purchased the property for $3.6 million in
2007. Archdiocese communications direc-
tor Mary Ross Agosta said that her organi-
zation had been negotiating with MG3 to
sell for "close to the purchase price.")
The lobbying efforts by Imagine
Schools did produce some results. Resi-
dent Vincent Biscombe said he was fortu-
nate because his wife taught at a private
school and was entitled to reduced tuition


for his children. But he was still happy
that there might be a charter school that
seemed to be "concerned with quality
education." Another young parent, Jenny
King, said she was "willing to look past
the traffic issues for the potential educa-
tional value." She lives one block from
the church property.
But the overall sentiment at the
meeting was pessimistic. "This is not
[about] education. It's a business. This is
not a community-support project. It's just
another way to make a buck," concluded


El Portal resident Doug Cunningham.
And with that, the board voted to recom-
mend that the Village Council deny
MG3's request for both a variance and
site approval.
When the Village Council met on
July 28, however, members decided to
give the MG3 team another chance to
respond to traffic issues, which they will
do on September 15, at the next meeting
of the planning and zoning board.

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Foreclosure, Loan Modifications, Short Sales, Real Estate Closings & Litigation,

Lender & Investor Representation, Real Property Acquisition,

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August 2009


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com






POLICE REPORTS


Biscayne Crime Beat

Compiled by Derek McCann


Crime or Scam?
Belle Meade
Victim secured his home (a relative term
in this city) and when he later returned,
many high-end items were missing:
a Frank Muller gold watch valued at
$33,000, a diamond ring for $5800, a
shark tooth estimated at $700, and a
60-inch television purchased for $8000.
Because of the substantial loss, finger-
prints were lifted from the scene. But
when the analysis came back, all the
prints belonged to the victim. Guess that
insurance payment won't be happening
anytime soon.

Kitchen Sink Is Next
Design District
In the mistaken belief she was living in
rural America, a Miami woman had left
her sliding doors open, only to discover
that her refrigerator yes, her refrigera-
tor was missing from her home. There
were no signs of forced entry and amaz-
ingly, no witnesses, save for the mice,


U


whose front door to their home in the
wall, had become exposed. The victim
will be having take-out tonight.

Condo Board Hell
Edgewater
At some condominiums, you have to deal
with harassment on a daily basis. But


stealing too? This condo owner, who is
also an art collector, had noticed that,
over the past few years, artworks had
mysteriously disappeared from her home.
(Another mystery: Why didn't she imme-
diately call the police?) The only person
with access to her unit was the president
of the condo board, whom she had once


spied exiting her apartment and locking
the door. When finally confronted, the
condo president erupted: "I'll enter your
apartment anytime I want!" So much
for that monthly maintenance fee going
toward building improvements. How
about investing in a video surveillance
security system

Taking Ownership
100 Block ofNE 19th Terrace
A woman had purchased a home, the
American Dream, and was in the process
of remodeling it. However, this snowbird
had to return to New York, and during
her absence, an enterprising Miami bur-
glar made his rounds. The locks of the
house were changed and a ratty mattress
was placed in the middle of the floor.
The burglar had moved in! So much for
the mantra "change the locks." Now our
clever crooks are doing it for you. The
man never did return for his mattress.

Continued on page 31


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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com August 2009


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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009






POLICE REPORTS

Crime Beat
Continued from page 30

Where Would Jesus Bank?
Omni
Thinking she could use God as a kind
of burglar alarm, a woman hid $2000 in
cash behind a picture of Jesus. Unfortu-
nately, a sinner entered her home while
she was at work and, in a possible act
of contrition, removed the framed Jesus
and placed it on the bed. Maybe he was
going to pray for forgiveness? Not! He
stole the money and made his way out.
Note to area residents (and Republicans):
Jesus was poor, so he's not watching over
your money.

Impervious to Pesticide
5700 Block ofN. Miami Avenue
We have many special types of criminals
in Miami, but perhaps none as daring as
our Fumigation Felons. In yet another in-
cident involving gaseous infiltration, the
victim tented his home but neglected to
take adequate security precautions. The
door was literally left open for violation.
His home was robbed and ransacked,


and the criminals) did not seem to care
about the toxic chemicals. BT readers,
please keep this in mind when getting
rid of little critters. The big critters
are watching.

Take My Wife Please!
1800 Block ofN. Bayshore Drive
Sound asleep, the victim heard a noise and
awoke to find a man hiding behind his
door. The victim asked him what he was
doing there (a rational question you might
put to any intruder). The trespassing man
said he was spying on his wife because she
was cheating on him and apologized be-
cause he seemed to have jumped onto the
wrong balcony. At which point the victim
directed him to the proper balcony so he
could continue his spying mission. Then
the victim called police. The cuckolded spy
was arrested.

So Much for Working from
Home
500 Block NE 69th Street
A seemingly loyal employee had taken
work files home with her, some of which
were very important to her employer.


Two weeks later she quit, but never re-
turned the files. A police report was filed,
and a warrant issued for her arrest.

Give Them an Inch...
Palm Grove
A kindly man let a stranger into his home
to use the bathroom. When nature calls,
after all, who are we to judge, regardless of
the shabby dress and gold teeth? The guest
spent quite a bit of time in the bathroom,
and when he finally finished his business,
he refused to leave and asked to sleep in
the gracious man's bed. The now horri-
fied homeowner chased the man out of his
house, and ran after him for a couple of
blocks, but eventually could not keep up.
At press time there had been no arrests, so
it's best to beware gold-toothed men seek-
ing bathrooms.

The Kindness of Strangers:
Reality Check
7800 Block ofNE 2nd Avenue
This wheelchair-bound victim had
just gotten out of the hospital only to
discover that his roommate had moved
out. But the roommate was thoughtful


enough to leave behind a strange
couple who already had keys to the
apartment. One of them, a man called
George, offered to drive the victim to
the local Walgreens to fill a prescrip-
tion. The victim handed George a bag
filled with valuables for safekeeping.
George helped him get out of the car
and pushed his wheelchair. and then
said, "I'll be right back." Of course he
never came back, nor did he return the
valuables. The victim was left stranded
- in his wheelchair, at Walgreens,
waiting to have his prescription filled.

Smile, You're on Six
Different Cameras
401 Biscayne Blvd.
An employee at a Bayfront Marketplace
business went on his morning break
but never returned. When the boss later
checked the cash register, he saw that it
had been compromised the tune of $400.
As the employee must have known, secu-
rity cameras were everywhere. No surprise
that he was quickly arrested and sent to jail.
One possible charge: felony dumb.
Feedback: letters@tbiscaynetimes.com


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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009


iil







ART & CULTURE


Big, Wet, and Fast

That would be the TM Sisters 'new performance c.vi:t\it,,tiiza


By Victor Barrenechea
BT Contributor

Our town may never escape the
DayGlo graphic stereotypes
it established for itself in the
1980s, when Miami Vice imprinted on
the nation's consciousness, the Miami
Sound Machine ignited pop music with
Latin rhythms, and roller rinks were
booming with young people dancing
on their skates to the sounds of Miami
bass music.
It's only natural that some of this
would eventually seep into the aesthetic
vocabulary of our local contemporary
arts, and there may be no better example
than the Miami-based TM Sisters art
duo. Later this month at Locust Projects,
the two actual sisters will be unveil-
ing WHIRL CRASH GO! a half-hour
production that will meld athleticism
with performance art. It promises to be a
quintessentially Miami spectacle.
The sisters, Tasha and Monica
Lopez De Victoria, have been working
together since 2002, and have become
known for their interactive video
installations that sometimes mimic
the mechanics of classic video games;
elaborate performance pieces that
often incorporate video backdrops; and
brightly colored collages, loaded with
angular shapes, photocopied found
images, fabrics, and paint. They have
exhibited internationally, everywhere
from Great Britain to Russia, from
Poland to Turkey. A big break came in
2005 with their inclusion in the widely
publicized traveling group exhibition
"Uncertain States of America: Ameri-
can Art in the 3rd Millennium."
While much of their work, and the
favorable notice it has garnered, occurs
outside South Florida, the two have
participated in countless local group
shows, and have also had successful
solo shows in now defunct art spaces
like Rocket Projects Gallery and the
Moore Space, as well as a recent one
at Broward's Art and Culture Center of
Hollywood. These days you can catch
them at various nightclubs and parties
VJ-ing or "video mixing," the visual
equivalent of what a DJ does with two
turntables, providing stunning visual
backdrops on large screens for late-
night partygoers.


TM Sisters Tasha and Monica will use their sports passions speed
skating and synchronized swimming as Miami metaphors.


Though it seems like they've been
as busy as ever, the sisters say they've
actually been in a kind of a self-imposed
exile for nearly a year, turning down a
variety of exhibition offers to concen-
trate on making new work. "For almost
a year we said no to practically every-
thing," Tasha notes.
Their cre-
ative time off
has been pro- The sisters were giv
ductive, they reign over Locust I
say, and led to new Design Distric
the develop- create an ambitious
ment of one
major project
that had been
percolating for some three years. "It's
been a while since we've dreamt of this,"
says Monica, describing the work as
something that had been floating around


ei
Pr
:t
s,


in their heads but never coalesced in a
way that allowed for presentation on a
grand scale until now.
The opportunity finally arrived
when they won the Locust Projects'
second annual Hilger Artist Project
Award, named for Austrian collector
and benefactor Ernst Hilger. More than
70 artists from
around the
n six weeks of free globe submit-
ojects' expansive ted proposals.
space in order to As winners,
site-specific work. the TM Sisters
were given
six summer
weeks of free
reign over Locust Projects' expansive
new Design District space in order to
create an ambitious, site-specific work
that would be unveiled as the first


exhibition of the art season. The $2000
honorarium is almost an afterthought
compared to the prestige and artistic pos-
sibilities presented by a big empty space
just waiting to be transformed.
Last year's winner, Miami-based
filmmaker Clifton Childree, showed
what could be done with such an op-
portunity when he turned Locust's
then-Wynwood location into an
abandoned amusement park movie set,
complete with interactive fun house
and loops of his short films running
throughout the space.
Speaking with the BT, the sisters
are cautious, careful not to reveal too
much about the performance's nar-
rative. Monica explains the evasive-
ness this way: "I don't want to tell the
story in a way that it's not meant to be
communicated."
Tasha adds, "It needs to be ex-
pressed in the actual medium it's meant
for." Being too forthright about the proj-
ect, she says, would be "like a watching a
movie trailer that says too much."
They did allow that at least 20 to 30
people would be working on the produc-
tion, including some behind the scenes.
Tasha boasts that it's their biggest and
most enterprising performance to date.
For one thing, it involves the use of an
above-ground swimming pool in the gal-
lery space, filled with water and capable
of accommodating a number of people.
The only collaborators the sisters would
mention by name were electronic sound
artist Otto Von Schirach, who would
be composing a booty-bass-infused
soundtrack for the project, and Karelle
Levy, owner of the Miami-based KREL-
wear fashion line, who will be contribut-
ing to costume design.
One of the overriding themes of the
project addresses the sisters' own heritage.
Their mother is half German and half
Swedish, while their father is Puerto
Rican. To Tasha and Monica, the different
backgrounds present opposing traits and
values, a kind of dynamic tension, with the
Germanic/Scandinavian side representing
staunchness and responsibility and the Ca-
ribbean side characterized by brightness,
fluidity, and liveliness.
Other WHIRL CRASH GO! col-
laborators share similarly mixed

Continued on page 33


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com August 2009


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009







ART & CULTURE

TM Sisters
Continued from page 32
backgrounds, including Von Schirach,
who is of Cuban/German descent.
"Miami is this big combination of cul-
tures," says Monica. "All of us are really
proud of our city and our backgrounds."
The sisters hint that the work itself will
be a microcosm of Miami's ethnic and
cultural diversity.
To that end, the performance will
involve two competing teams, each
personifying one side of their heritage,
and each engaged in an athletic pur-
suit near and dear to the sisters' hearts:
synchronized swimming with its orderly
grace, and freestyle roller skating with
its carefree spontaneity.
"We wanted to do a big production
combining our two biggest sports," says
Tasha, an avid speed skater since the age
of 11. A few years ago she tried to start
her own roller derby team here in Miami.
Though that never materialized, she briefly
became a jammerr" (the designated skater
on a roller derby team who scores points)
for a Fort Lauderdale team known as the
Broward County Derby Grrls. Unfortu-
nately her constant traveling as an artist


-"q
e .
C, )


Sound artist Otto Von Schirach Karelle Levy, of KRELwear
will create a soundtrack for the fashions, is designing the
performance piece. performers' costumes.


kept her from properly dedicating herself
to the team. Nevertheless she continues
to skate, mostly at Super Wheels Skating
Center in Kendall (formerly Hot Wheels),
where she skates along to classic free-
style and bass music in a less constrained
manner. "The most fun part," she says, "is


having the Miami bass and everyone skat-
ing in rhythm."
Meanwhile Monica has been involved
in the world of synchronized swimming
also since she was 11. She competed until
the age of 20, and was among the nation's
top-ranked athletes, with sponsorships


' by Nike and Speedo. Monica describes
" the sport as being "very technical and
Artisticc" Although she no longer competes,
i she remains a member of a professional
synchronized swimming troupe that per-
forms at celebrity parties and on televi-
: sion commercials.
C The two sisters are approaching
WHIRL CRASH GO! energetically,
citing their stints video-mixing at parties
and clubs a huge inspiration. "All of it,"
says Tasha, "is going to look a lot like
the style, feel, and flow of video DJ-ing."
Together they hope to put on a seminal
performance that will not only reflect the
idiosyncrasies of their colorful personali-
ties, but also that of their beloved city.

Performances will take place on August
29 and October 10 at 8:00p.m., Locust
Projects, 155 NE 38th St., Miami. For
more information call 305-576-8570 or
visit www.locustprojects.org. The pro-
duction 's set construction will be open
to the public every Wednesday ;ih,. ,,gi
Saturday from noon to 5:00p.m. until the
performance date.

Feedback: letters @biscaynetimes.com


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I BEE TEE! I


August 2009









ART & CULTURE


ART LISTINGS


WYNWOOD GALLERY WALK & DESIGN DISTRICT
ART + DESIGN NIGHT
SATURDAY, AUGUST 8

101/EXHIBIT
101 NE 40th St, Miami
305-573-2101
www 101exhibit com
Call gallery for exhibition information

ABBA FINE ART
233 NW 36th St, Miami
305-576-4278
www abbafineart com
Call gallery for exhibition information

ALEJANDRA VON HARTZ FINEARTS
2630 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
305-438-0220
www alejandravonhartz net
Through September 5
"Luna Park" with Daniel Arsham, Luls Gispert, Gean
Moreno, Martin Oppel, Ernesto Oroza, and Gavin Perry

AMAYA GALLERY
2033 NW 1st PI, Miami
917-743-2925
www amayagallery com
Call gallery for exhibition information

ARNO VALERE ART GALLERY BY RICART
3900 NE 1st Ave, Miami
305-576-5000
www valerericartgallery com
Call gallery for exhibition information

ART FUSION
1 NE 40th St, Miami
305-573-5730
www artfusiongallery com
Through September 23
"Esoteric Illusions" with various artists
Reception August 8, 7 to 10 p.m.

ART GALLERY AT GOVERNMENT CENTER
111 NW 1st St, Suite 625, Miami
305-375-4634
www mlamidadearts org
Through August 7
Solo show by Robert Chambers

ARTFORMZ
171 NW 23rd St, Miami
305-572-0040
www artformz net
Through September 5
"Hotter Than a Match Head" with Natasha Duwin, Sibel
Kocabasl, Ray Paul, PJ Mills, Alette Simmons-Jimenez,
Rosario Rivera-Bond, Rai Escale, Anja Marals, Ram6n
Williams, Gulllermo Portleles, Donna Haynes, and
Gisela Savdle

BAKEHOUSE ART COMPLEX
561 NW 32nd St, Miami
305-576-2828
www bacfl org
Call gallery for exhibition information

BAS FISHER INVITATIONAL
180 NE 39th St, #210, Miami
By appointment info@basfisherinvitational com
www basfisherinvitational com
Through August 8
Solo show by Kathleen Hudspeth
Reception August 8, 7 to 10 p.m.

BERNICE STEINBAUM GALLERY
3550 N Miami Ave, Miami
305-573-2700
www bernicesteinbaumgallery com
Through September 5
"Nine Lives Dog Days of Summer" with various artists
Reception August 8, 7 to 10 p.m.

CAROL JAZZAR CONTEMPORARY ART
158 NW 91st St, Miami Shores
305-490-6906


rim uavis, ainmow Breacl, zuub, at World Class Boxing.


www cjazzart com
By appointment carol@cjazzart com
Call gallery for exhibition information

CENTER FOR VISUAL COMMUNICATION
541 NW 27th St, Miami
305-571-1415
www visual org
Ongoing
Solo show by Clarence Laughlin

CHAREST-WEINBERG GALLERY
250 NW 23rd St, Miami
305-292-0411
www charest-welnberg com
Through August 31
Pedro Barbelto and Jason Gringler

CHELSEA GALLERIA
2441 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
305-576-2950
www chelseagalleria com
Call gallery for exhibition information
Through August 1
"Cosmos" by Tonel

CS GALLERY
787 NE 125th St North Miami
305-308-6561
www chirinossanchez com
Call gallery for exhibition information

DAMIEN B. CONTEMPORARY ART CENTER
282 NW 36th St, Miami
305-573-4949
www damlenb com
Call gallery for exhibition
information

DAVID CASTILLO GALLERY
2234 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
305-573-8110
www castilloart com
Through August 1
Group show with Adler Guerrier, Aramis Gutlerrez,
Qulsqueya Henrlquez, Susan Lee-Chun, Pepe Mar
Glexls Novoa, Javier Pin6n, Leyden Rodriguez-
Casanova, Frances Trombly, and Wendy Wischer

DELUXE ART GALLERY
2051 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
786-200-4971
Call gallery for exhibition information


DIANA LOWENSTEIN FINE ARTS
2043 N Miami Ave, Miami
305-576-1804
www dlfinearts com
Call gallery for exhibition information

DIASPORA VIBE GALLERY
3938 NE 39th St, Miami
305-573-4046
www diasporavibe net
Through August 5
"My Space Miami" by Jorge Rojas
August 8
"Low Lives" with various artists
August 13 through September 24
"Caribbean Crossroads Series Clay" Michael Layne,
Caroline Holder, and Erman Gonzalez
Reception August 8, 6 to 9 p.m.
Reception August 13, 7 to 10 p.m.

DORSCH GALLERY
151 NW 24th St, Miami
305-576-1278
www dorschgallery com
Call gallery for exhibition information

DOT FIFTYONE ART SPACE
51 NW 36th St, Miami
305-573-9994
www dotfiftyone com
Through August 30
"home work" with various artists and "Operation -
WORKLOAD" by Magnus Sigurdarson
Reception August 8, 7 to 10 p.m.

EDGAR ACE GALLERY
7520 NE 4th Ct, Miami
305-877-2401
Call gallery for exhibition information

EDGE ZONES CONTEMPORARY ART
47 NE 25th St, Miami
305-303-8852
www edgezones org
Call gallery for exhibition information

ELITE ART EDITIONS GALLERY
151 NW 36th St, Miami
305-403-5856
www elitearteditions com
Call gallery for exhibition information

ETRA FINE ART
10 NE 40th St, Miami


305-438-4383
www etrafineart com
Call gallery for exhibition information

FACHEARTS
750 NE 124th St, North Miami #2
305-975-6933
www fachearts com
Through August 28
"Green Art" by Carla Fache
Reception August 28, 7 to midnight

FREDRIC SNITZER GALLERY
2247 NW 1st PI Miami
305-448-8976
www snitzer com
August 8
"Child Foundation Charity Event" with Zack Balber,
Hernan Bas, Lorlel Beltran, Timothy Buwalda,
COOPER, Naomi Fisher, Jacin Giordan, Jiae Hwang,
Natalya Laskis, Beatriz Monteavaro, Jose Felix Perez,
Gavin Perry, Bert Rodriguez, Crlstina Lei Rodriguez,
Jordan Service, Jen Stark, Alex Sweet, Tatlana Vahan,
and Michael Vasquez
Reception August 8, 8 to 10 p.m.

GALLERY DIET
174 NW 23rd St, Miami
305-571-2288
www gallerydlet com
Through August 1
"Oh Nancy" curated by Brian Burkhardt with various
artists

GARY NADER FINE ART
62 NE 27th St, Miami
305-576-0256
www garynader com
Call gallery for exhibition information

HARDCORE ARTS CONTEMPORARY SPACE
3326 N Miami Ave, Miami
305-576-1645
www hardcoreartcontemporary com
Call gallery for exhibition information

HAROLD GOLEN GALLERY
2294 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
305-989-3359
www haroldgolengallery com
Call gallery for exhibition information

INTERFLIGHT STUDIO GALLERY
250 NW 23rd St Loft 206, Miami
305-573-1673
www flightstudlogallery com
Call gallery for exhibition information

KELLEY ROY GALLERY
50 NE 29 St, Miami
305-447-3888
www kelleyroygallery com
Through September 30
"Handmade Horizons and Songs" by Sebastian Spreng
Reception August 8, 7 to 10 p.m.

KEVIN BRUK GALLERY
2249 NW 1st PI Miami
305-576-2000
www kevinbrukgallery com
Through August 31
Summer show with various artists
Reception August 8, 7 to 10 p.m.

KUNSTHAUS MIAMI
3312 N Miaml Ave, Miami
305-438-1333
www kunsthaus org mx
Through August 30
Group show with Armando de la Garza, Ivan Pulg, and
Leonardo Ramirez
Reception August 8, 7 to 10 p.m.

LEITER GALLERY
6900 Biscayne Blvd, Miami

Continued on page 35


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com August 2009


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009








ART & CULTURE


Art Listings
Continued from page 34

305-389-2616
Call gallery for exhibition information

LOCUST PROJECTS
155 NE 38th St, Miami
305-576-8570
www locustprojects org
August 29 through October 17
"WHIRL CRASH GOI" by the TM Sisters
Performance August 29, 8 p.m.

LUIS ADELANTADO GALLERY
98 NW 29th St, Miami
305-438-0069
www lulsadelantadomlaml com
Call gallery for exhibition information

LURIE KAVACHNINA GALLERY
46 NW 36th St, Miami
305-448-2060
www lurle-kavachnina com
Through August 7 "Pleles" by Andres Dominguez

LYLE O. REITZEL GALLERY
2441 NW2nd Ave, Miami
305-573-1333
www artnet com/reitzel html
Call gallery for exhibition information

MARIO FLORES GALLERY
12502 NE 8th Ave, North Miami
561-201-2053
www marlofloresgallery com
Call gallery for exhibition information

MIAMI CENTER FOR THE PHOTOGRAPHIC ARTS
1601 SW 1st St, Miami
305-649-9575
www mcpagallery com
Call gallery for exhibition information


Ivan Puig, Crecimientos Artificiales, digital print, 2008, at Kunsthaus Miami.


MIAMI ART GROUP GALLERY
21 NW 36th St, Miami
305-576-2633
www miamiartgroup com
Ongoing Solo exhibition by James Kitchens

MIAMI ART SPACE
244 NW 35th St, Miami
305-438-9002
www mlamlartspace com
August 8 through August 21
"Art Axis An Art Exhibit Benefiting the Children's Home
Society of Florida" curated by Adad Balcacer, with
Roger B, Josafat Miranda, Newton Wallace, Phil Fung,
and more
Reception August 8, 6 to 10 p.m.


MIAM-DADE COLLEGE, CENTER GALLERY
300 NE 2nd Ave ,
Bldg 1, Room 1365, Miami
305-237-3696
www mdc edu
Call gallery for exhibition
information

MIAMI INTERNATIONAL UNIVERSITY
OF ART AND DESIGN
1501 Biscayne Blvd, Miami
305-428-5700
www mymlu com
Through August 14
'Like Cats and Dogs" with
various artists


MUSEO VAULT
346 NW 29th St, Miami
305-571-1175
www museovault cor
Call gallery for exhibition information

OUR HOUSE WEST OF WYNWOOD
3100 NW 7th Ave Miami
305-490-2976
www oh-wow com
Call gallery for exhibition information

PANAMERICAN ART PROJECTS
2450 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
305-573-2400
www panamerlcanart com
Through August 13
Shows by Leopoldo Romanach and the Cuban
Vanguardia and Hector Molne
Reception August 8, 6 to 9 p.m.

PRAXIS INTERNATIONAL ART
2219 NW2ndAve, Miami
305-573-2900
www praxis-art com
Call gallery for exhibition information

PRESSITON ART GALLERY
4100 N Miaml Ave, Miami
786-925-2930
www pressitonart com
August 27 through September 19
New works by Laura DiNello, Elena Madden, Tobla
Makover, Cedric Smith, Terry Strickland, and Jamle
Baldrldge

PUZZLEMENT GALLERY
81 NW 24th St, Miami
917-929-8559
www puzzlementart com
Ongoing show with Kevin Brady, Manuel Carbonell,

Continued on page 36


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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com








ART & CULTURE

Art Listings
Continued from page 35

Nichole Chimentl, Carter Davis, Stephen Gamson,
Raquel Glottman, Jim Herbert, Jennifer Kaiser, Alex
Paiva Lopez, Andy Pledllato, Tomy F Trujillo, Jonathan
'Depoe" Villoch, and Glancarlo Zavala

SPINELLO GALLERY
531 NE 82nd Terr, Miami
786-271-4223
www spinellogallery com
Call gallery for exhibition information

STASH GALLERY
162 NE 50 Terr, Miami
305-992-7652
www myspace com/stashgallery
Through August 10
'I don't think he gave her the time that night but damn
near damn near" by Joseph O'Neal
Reception August 10, 7 to midnight

STEVE MARTIN STUDIO
66 NE 40th St, Miami
305-484-1491
www stevemartinfineart com
Call gallery for exhibition information

UNIVERSITY OF MIAMI PROJECTS SPACE
2200 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
305-284-2542
Call gallery for exhibition information

UNTITLED 2144
2144 NE 2nd Ave, Miami
305-576-2112
www untitled2144 com
Call gallery for exhibition information

WALLFLOWER GALLERY
10 NE 3rd St, Miami
305-579-0069


www wallflowergallery com
myspace com/
wallflowergallery
Call gallery for
exhibition information

WOLFGANG ROTH &
PARTNERS FINE ART
201 NE 39th St, Miami
305-576-6960
www wrpfineart com
Call gallery for
exhibition information

MUSEUM &
COLLECTION
EXHIBITS

CIFO (Cisneros
Fontanals Art
Foundation)
1018N MiamiAve,
Miami
305-455-3380 Courtney Johnson
www cifo org
Call for operating hours Clichi-Verre, 2009
and exhibit information

FLORIDA INTERNATIONAL UNIVERSITY FROST
ART MUSEUM
11200 SW 8th St, Miami
305-348-0496
http //thefrost flu edu/
Through August 16
"Because I Say So" sculpture from the Scholl Collection
Through August 23
"2009 Cintas Finalist Fellowship Exhibition" with various
artists
Through September 16
"Genetic Portraits" by Nela Ochoa
Through September 20
"What Comes After" by Nancy Friedemann


i, New York, pigment prints from
,at Bernice Steinbaum Gallery.

LOWE ART MUSEUM, UNIVERSITY OF MIAMI
1301 Stanford Dr, Coral Gables
305-284-3535
www lowemuseum org
Through October 4
"Through the Lens Photography from the Permanent
Collection" with various artists

MIAMI ART MUSEUM
101 W Flagler St, Miami
305-375-3000
www mlamiartmuseum org
Through September 13 "NeoHooDoo Art for a
Forgotten Faith" with various artists
Through October 11
"Recent Acquisitions" with various artists


MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY ART
770 NE 125th St North Miami
305-893-6211
www mocanoml org
Through September 13
"Convention" with Julieta Aranda, Fla Backstrom, Xavier
Cha, Anne Daems & Kenneth Andrew Mroczek, Fritz
Haeg, Corey McCorkle, Dave McKenzle, My Barbarian,
Christodoulos Panaylotou, Sean Raspet, Superflex and
Jens Haaning, and Miami's Jim Drain, Gean Moreno,
and Bert Rodriguez

MOCA AT GOLDMAN WAREHOUSE
404 NW 26th St, Miami
305-893-6211
www mocanoml org
Call for operating hours and exhibit information

THE MARGULIES COLLECTION
591 NW 27th St, Miami
305-576-1051
www margulieswarehouse com
Call for operating hours and exhibit information

THE RUBELL FAMILY COLLECTION
95 NW 29th St, Miami
305-573-6090
www rubellfamilycollection com
Call for operating hours and exhibit information

WORLD CLASS BOXING
Debra and Dennis Scholl Collection
170 NW 23rd St, Miami
305-438-9908
www worldclassboxing org/
Through August 31
"The importance of Daydreams" curated by Tyler
Emerson- Dorsch with various artists

Compiled by Victor Barrenechea
Send listings, jpeg images, and events information to
art@biscaynetimes com


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& Tire Rotation ., Ier
fnclidas 21 PinA F l~l
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Most ars a Bradlli KIratin
S*Boldy Waipng


HUMANA., -


MarketHIINT


Richard Prophete
SSales Representative

a* 8400 NW 36th St.. Stf 350
Doral, FL 33166

S(305) 389-9163 Cell
(305) 698-3144 Office
S (00) 462-7587 Toll Free

rprophete@hu mana.com


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com







ART & CULTURE


Culture Briefs


From French Aristocrats to
Blubbery Elvis
Written more than 300 years ago by master
French comedic playwright Jean Baptiste
Poquelin (better known as Molibre), Le Bour-
geois gentilhomme (The Bourgeois Gentle-
man) has been transformed by Miami's own
Paul Tei, retitled Viva Bourgeois!, and is
now onstage Thursday-Saturday through
August 22 at Miami Light Project's Light
Box Studio (3000 Biscayne Blvd.). Veteran
director Tei has kept much of Molibre script
but has ingeniously set it in a place that looks
a lot like Graceland with a main character
who resembles Elvis. Like the original,
though, it mercilessly mocks just about
everyone, from upper-class snobs to country
bumpkins. Tickets are $25-$30. Students $10
Thursday. For reservations call 305-576-
6377 or visit www.madcattheatre.org.


Silky Smooth Hair Relaxer by
Cristina Molina

Short Films Long on
Originality
After reviewing short films (under five
minutes) submitted by more than 50 of
South Florida's most creative filmmak-
ers, an independent jury has chosen the
best of the bunch to be featured at the
Museum of Contemporary Art's "Optic
Nerve XI" festival. The screenings take
place at the museum (770 NE 125th
St., North Miami) on Friday, August
7. Find out which short gains admission
to the museum's permanent collection,
courtesy of funding by Starbucks Coffee
Company, the festival's sponsor. The
films unspool at 7:00 and 9:00 p.m., and
museum admission gets you in, but
seating is limited and reservations are
required, so don't delay. Call 305-893-
6211 or visit www.mocanomi.org.

If 50 Is the New 30, Do I
Really Need to See This Play?
Upon reaching middle age, some men
develop an irresistible urge to own a


sports car. Some women of a certain
age become obsessed with anything that
sags. Many of the trials and tribulations
of aging are shown for the nonsense they
are in the irreverent Midlife! The Crisis
Musical, playing at the Main Street
Players (6766 Main St., Miami Lakes)
August 7-23. This stage play confronts
the existential angst that often accompa-
nies midlife, and slays it with rip-roaring
laughter. Tickets are $15-$20. Shows are
Friday and Saturday at 8:00 p.m., Sunday
at 5:00 p.m. Call 305-558-3737 or visit
www.mainstreetplayers.com.

Storm Prep? We Don't
Need No Stinkin' Storm
Prep...
The Historical Museum of Southern
Florida (101 W. Flagler St.) wants you to
be well prepared for the hurricane that,
sooner or later, is going to huff and puff
and try to blow your house down. You
probably think you're already prepared,
which is why the museum wants to lure
you in forfree on Saturday, August
8. As part of Hurricane History 101,
kids can make a hurricane in bottle that
works like a snow globe. Adults will be
vividly reminded how our area has fared
in past storms. And you'll get fresh new
tips on how to prepare smartly. Don't
miss the Storm Gourmet demonstrations:
elegant meals you can make after the
electricity goes off. From noon to 4:00
p.m. Parking discount available. Call
305-375-1492.

Kiddie Karts on Steroids
Remember go-karts? How about the
Malibu Grand Prix off the Palmetto?
Low-slung little cars that you could
get up to 40 mph or so? Try this: Super
souped-up competition karts tearing
through real grand prix tracks and
hitting 150 mph on straight-aways.
Just 1.5 inches off the ground. Wow!
That's what awaits you at the 2009
South Florida Rmax Challenge at
Homestead-Miami Speedway (1 Speed-
way Blvd., Homestead) on Saturday,
August 8, and Sunday, August 9.
Saturday is qualifying. On Sunday the
feature races start at 3:00 p.m.. Top
two winners in each class will head to
the U.S. national championships. The
track opens at 8:00 a.m. Pit passes are
a mere $10. Free general admission.


Call 305-230-5000 or visit v
steadkarting.net.

Miami's Kinky Art
Revealed
Death Print, Aiden Dillard's
humorous feature film starring
classic-car mogul Ted Vernoi
queen Rubber Doll, takes vie'
the seamy side of Miami's bu
art scene, where murder and
paint the city a bloody mess.
liberty with Charles Bronson
Wish, this fourth feature of D
adeptly shows the writer/dire
attention to detail with the da
offbeat, and kinky. The film's
is Saturday, August 8 at the
Theater (1040 Lincoln Rd., M
Beach). Tickets are $12. Scre
at 8:00 p.m. Call 305-674-104
www.ticketmaster.com.


Fairchild Flings Opi
Gates For Free


ww.home-


Scene

darkly
ig Miami
i and fetish
wers into
rgeoning
revenge
Taking
and Death
illard's


August 16. Got a snake? Bring it. Enter
contests for prizes. Two free admis-
sions are given for each snake compet-
ing. Speak with experts and see snakes
galore, including the monstrous Ana-
conda, one of the largest on earth. Try
the edible crispy ants, stir-fried meal-
worms (we dare you), and other delica-
cies cooked up by creepy crawler expert
Kat Duran. Admission is $15.30 adults.
$13.60 students with ID. Open 10:00 a.m.
to 6:00 p.m. Call 305-646-4256 or visit
www.miamisci.org.


ctor's Land of Oz, Students of
ngerous, Dance, and Quite a Splash
s premiere Michael Jackson was just 19 when he
Colony played the scarecrow in the movie The
[iami Wiz. Two years later Fame hit theaters,
ening starts spawning a television series, and now
\0 or go to a film remake out later this year. Three
years after that, 1983's Flashdance won
the Academy Award for Best Song with
"Flashdance: What a Feeling." Now all
three original movies (two of them
35mm prints) return to the really big
screen for "Flickin' Summer," a new
film series at the gorgeous Gusman
Center for the Performing Arts (174 E.
Flagler St., downtown). All screenings
are on Thursdays at 7:00 p.m. August 20:
Fame. August 27: Flashdance. Septem-
ber 3: The Wiz. Ticket prices not set at
en Its press time, so call 305-372-0925 or visit
www.gusmancenter.org.


If you have never been to Fairchild
Tropical Botanic Garden (10901 Old
Cutler Rd., Coral Gables), you must be
new to Miami, and you can't possibly
imagine how enchantingly beautiful is
this lushly landscaped oasis. So every
Sunday this August admission isfree.
With more than 80 acres of rain forests,
butterfly gardens, glistening lakes,
flower gardens, exotic and magnificent
flowering trees, a two-story indoor
garden, and more species of palms and
bamboo than you knew existed well,
this is the best chance to finally see
what you've been missing. Open 9:30
a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Call 305-667-1651 or
visit www.fairchildgarden.org.

Snakes in a Museum!
For those not averse to legless creatures
that slither and hiss, the Miami Science
Museum (3280 S. Miami Ave.) pres-
ents this year's Snake Day on Sunday,


Reggae: From Music to
Film to Stage
A new stage musical brings the poignant
story and all the remarkable music from
a landmark film credited with helping to
create a worldwide love of reggae. The
Harder They Come plays at the Arsht
Center for the Performing Arts (1300
Biscayne Blvd.) August 29-September
13. When a young singer in Jamaica hits
it big time in reggae, the music industry
and the drugs accompanying it cause
him to lose his way. Even with the law
after him, he risks everything to keep
singing the music he loves. Tickets are
$50-$95. Shows begin at 8:00 p.m. Mati-
nees at 2:00 p.m. Call 305-949-6722 or
visit www.arshtcenter.org.

Compiled by BT intern Brian Horowitz

Feedback: letters@tbiscaynetimes.com


August 2009 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009







PARK PATROL


Lots of Potential, All of It Unrealized

Note to City of Miami: It t called Eaton Park, remember?


By Jim W. Harper
BT Contributor

leepy little Eaton Park is a study in
the art of transitional space. On one
side are the FEC railroad tracks
and the warehouses and loading docks
of the Little River Industrial District. On
the other side and farther east from the
tracks you'll find the 85-year-old private
Cushman School, where the annual tu-
ition for preschool kids is $12,000.
The residents north and west of the
park are, by and large, poor and Haitian.
Not far to the east, both north and south,
the prosperous residents of Morningside
enjoy the security of guard gates and
barricaded streets as they sip cocktails
poolside or congregate and relax at 55th
Street Station.
In between the extremes sits humble
Eaton Park. It is so humble, in fact, that
the City of Miami does not include it on
the Website of the Parks and Recreation
Department. Even the name "Eaton"
fails to register on the Miami meter.
What does register is the Lemon City
Branch Library on the northern border
of the park. This tidy building provides
the restrooms and rain shelter that the
park lacks. Just don't visit on Fridays or
Sunday, when it is closed.
Swirls of barbed wire cover the rear
roof of the library, which overlooks the
park. This imposing defense system
indicates that those windows have been
breached in the past. (Vandals? Or
people so desperate to use the library


Tempting: All that nice grass just begs for a pick-up game, but the city
says no go.


S pick-up game, you have to pay the city
2 its cut. But when no one is looking, illicit
Games of soccer may erupt. One eyewit-
Sness, who shall remain nameless, told me
Sas much.
0 Besides the annoying signs warn-
2 ing of "field use by permit only," Eaton
SPark does not offer much in terms of
direction or identity. The imposing and
ugly totems announcing the Little River
Industrial District dwarf the park's small
metallic signs along NE 4th Court. Um,
when is Little River Pride Day?
Activity in the park's main sec-
tion follows distinct schools of thought:
Either you play dominoes or you sleep.
The small playground pit seems to get
little attention. But the benches and the
limited shade attract plenty of snoozers.
The seven burgundy-colored gaming
tables placed along the park's sturdy


they'll break glass to get in?)
Security is the biggest question mark
swirling around the park. The single
night light near the basketball courts was
not working during July visits, and the
fence cannot be locked. It might be fair
to assume that at night the park may at-
tract some unsavory elements.
But during the day it appears peace-
ful and calm, except for the traffic along
NE 4th Court. This busy alternative to
Biscayne Boulevard divides the park into
two distinct sections.
Eaton Park can be summarized in three
words: grass, dominoes, and basketball.
The main section of Eaton, adjacent


-



Tot lot and barbed wire: Sharp contrasts, just like the neighborhoods
around Eaton Park.


to the library, features a large grass
field. The field shows little sign of usage
because A) the lack of shade makes
it nearly unbearable in the summer
months, and B) it requires a permit from
the Parks and Recreation Department
before it can be used for team sports.
This permit must be filed ten days before
the "event," thereby killing the American
concept of the pick-up game.
In Miami, if you want to have a


green fence draw a regular crowd, al-
though most of the tables remain empty
owing to that relentless lack of shade. An
oversize checkerboard is built into the
middle of each four-person table. This is
BYOD bring your own dominoes.
Across the street and adjacent to
the train tracks is the other third of the
park, taken up mostly by two basketball

Continued on page 39


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com August 2009


171~:'.r~k.l


a


IAO PAR I


Park Rating


(01115 NE 4th Ci.
Mi.ami
3115-41(.-13511
Hour:I SinIIsI 10 Stiohl
Picnic .ii)l': \Y-
B.ir'lecuti : Yk-s
Picnic p.i ilionii: No
Tennii, cou rt,: No
Ahiletric liclhi,: Yks
Niulit liulilinu: No
Sn iiiinlinu pool: No
Pl.eal-.nIIud: Yi.s
S|eci.al |featre. : LibIul b inchli


-


_I _


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009






PARK PATROL


Eaton Park
Continued from page 38

courts. A tall fence surrounds the court
closer to the railroad tracks, whereas
the other court remains open. One open,
one fenced? Perhaps a misguided safety
measure to designed keep basketballs
from bouncing onto the tracks? That
stretch of the FEC tracks only rarely
carries a train, and then usually at night.
North of the courts, an odd-shaped
patch of grass sits idle. It looks aban-
doned, forlorn.
Trash accumulates around the
fences and under the benches. This park
must be popular with the "lunch and
dump" crowd.
The park seems to draw a distinctly
masculine crowd, although there is a
very nurturing element in the park's
northeast corner. There stands the
brightly painted Eaton Park Day Care
center, which accepts children as young
as one.
The upside of Eaton Park is its acces-
sibility. Near several schools, a library,
and a high-density neighborhood, not to
mention within walking distance of the


On the west side of I
community garden?


Boulevard, the park could be the neigh-
borhood's heart.
It could also be one of those inner-
city parks that offers just enough green
space and shade to keep area residents
sane. But with restrictions on usage of
the field and very limited shade, the park
is most likely not fulfilling its destiny.
Here's where Eaton Park could clean
up its act and compete with nearby


Legion Park, Morningside Park, and the
Little Haiti Soccer Park. Number one,
fix the new fence. People pass in and
out of the gap where it was broken at the
library's southeast corner.
Number two, create a community
garden in the passive space north of the
basketball courts. That would get all
types of residents to visit regularly. This
area will need a combination of fencing


and landscaping to separate it from the
train tracks.
Once people start gardening, they
could also be enlisted to beautify the
area south of the courts, where an apart-
ment building looks out over a field of
weeds. Not pretty.
Put one of the park's "regulars" on
litter patrol. One of their own will get
them to clean up their act.
Install a complimentary lemonade
stand where visitors can also rent pillows
and blankets to assist with their park
power naps.
Cover the barbed wiring with
green glitter.
Okay, so there is only so much that
can be done to make this park more
appealing. But please, City of Miami,
replace the angry "permit only" signs
with a more humane version. Something
like "fields of children encouraged."
Maybe Miami's preschoolers from
across the economic spectrum will
finally put Eaton Park on the map. Or
at least help it find its way onto the
city's Website.

Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com


Think. Plan. Act.

Are you ready for

Hurricane Season?

Think about what you'll need before,
during and after a storm like enough
food, water and prescriptions to last at
least 72 hours.

SPlan ahead for special needs
and pet-friendly shelters. Advance
registration is required.

Act on the facts. Sign up to get
wireless emergency alerts sent
directly to your wireless device.

Find hurricane readiness resources
online at www.miamidade.gov/
hurricane or call 3-1-1.

MIAMI-DE3

Sign up at miamidade.gov for
direct access to news and services.


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August 2009 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


S'


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August 2009


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com







COLUMNISTS: HARPER'S ENVIRONMENT


Canaries in the Oceanic Coal Mine
SWhen sea turtles struggle to survive, it means big trouble


By Jim W. Harper
BT Contributor

Miami-Dade remains the only
county in South Florida
without a lighting ordinance
to protect sea turtles. Monroe County
adopted its ordinance in 1994, Broward
County in 1989, and Palm Beach County
in 1987. Along Florida's Atlantic coast,
only Miami-Dade and Duval counties
(Jacksonville) lack countywide laws.
To remedy this embarrassment, the
Miami-Dade County Commission can
simply copy and paste the state's lighting
ordinance, available online here: www.
myfwc.com/WILDLIFEHABITATS/
Seaturtle Protection.htm. Send the link
to your county commissioner at www.
miamidade.gov/commiss/.
The ordinance can be adopted as is
or customized to the Miami-Dade's needs.
"The Florida Wildlife Commission would
be pleased to guide them in drafting the
ordinance," offers Blair Witherington,
research scientist with the Florida Fish and
Wildlife Conservation Commission. He
can be reached at 321-674-1801.
But perhaps Miami-Dade has no
will to protect endangered species. Per-
haps it is trying to follow the example
of Cuba, where it is legal to hunt log-
gerhead turtles. Cuba = sea turtle death.
Miami = sea turtle ...? The commission-
ers can complete that equation.
A lighting ordinance in Miami-Dade
County would not single-handedly save
sea turtles, but it would be a very impor-
tant step symbolically. It would show the
world that Miami cares.
Both nesting females and newly
hatched sea turtles are distracted by


artificial light. Females may abandon
attempts to lay eggs, and hatchlings may
crawl toward the artificial light instead
of toward a moonlit ocean. Every year
disoriented baby sea turtles try to cross
coastal A1A. Do not relate this story to
your children as the ending is not happy.
Two local municipalities along A1A
have already proven their will to protect sea
turtles: Golden Beach in 1997 and Miami
Beach in 2006. Their lighting ordinances
protect a few miles of beaches, but most of
the county's shoreline remains unaffected.
Sea turtles face many other threats be-
sides beachfront lighting, but it is one of the
challenges within our control. New coastal
construction must comply with state law and
obtain a permit from the state's Department
of Environmental Protection, which has
guidelines for lighting. Existing structures,
however, are not covered.
Beach visitors may have noticed the
yellow tape and signs marking current
sea turtle nests. The nests are marked by
volunteers and county workers who scan the
beaches every morning. In addition to pro-
viding some protection, the marking of nests
allows for accurate data collection and the
review of hatched nests, which takes place
in late summer. Humans should keep their
distance from the marked nests.
"You wouldn't want to drive an um-
brella stand in there," notes Beth Brost,
a biological scientist with the Florida
Wildlife Research Institute. "The best
thing the public can do for sea turtles is
to keep trash off the beaches, keep lights
off at night, and respect the nests that are
marked off."
Current data show that loggerhead
turtle nests are declining in Florida. Our
beaches are ground zero for loggerheads as


they nest here in the greatest numbers. If
their decline continues, loggerhead turtles
will join the other six sea turtle species on
the U.S. list of endangered species. In U.S.
waters they are listed as "threatened," but
internationally they are endangered owing
to low numbers in the Pacific.
In the past 20 years, the number of
loggerhead nests counted on Florida's
beaches has declined significantly, accord-
ing to Witherington, the lead author of a
2009 scientific paper on the topic published
by the Ecological Society of America. The
causes are likely multiple, but not irrevers-
ible. Other species that nest in Florida,
such as the green turtle, have shown an
increase in nesting activity.
But as Florida's flagship species, the
loggerhead is of particular concern. Rea-
sons for its decline may include artificial
lighting, industrial offshore fishing, and
beach renourishment projects. Beaches in
Miami-Dade being fortified with new sand
may discourage nesting sea turtles. "More
is not better for sea turtles," says With-
erington. "The best beaches have steep
slopes and are not very wide."
Pollution is a major concern, as sea
turtles are regularly found wrapped in
netting or having ingested plastic, which
they may mistake for jellyfish.
As loggerheads take 30 years to
reach sexual maturity, the effects on
current populations may not be notice-
able for decades. Witherington's research
speculates that if current trends continue,
between 1998 and 2017 loggerhead nests
will have declined by 80 percent.
Poaching of eggs is not a major
problem statewide, although it may be
of more concern in Miami-Dade, where
many residents hail from countries


where turtle eggs are eaten.
A recent case in Miami demonstrates
that the capture of sea turtles is also a con-
cern RamonPuente of Miami was charged
with a third-degree felony in April after a
routine inspection of his fishing equipment
revealed a young green sea turtle, an endan-
gered species, hidden inside his cooler. The
funny thing about this particular sea turtle is
that it had been caught before. The injured
creature was rehabilitated by the Miami
Seaquarium in 2008 and released in March
2009. After being rediscovered, it was
returned to the Seaquarium.
Sick and disoriented sea turtles have
another nearby option for treatment: the
Sea Turtle Hospital on Marathon Key. This
hospital discovered sea turtle "bubble butt"
syndrome, a malady that makes it difficult
for turtles to dive. A current resident of the
hospital with the syndrome, caught on Janu-
ary 20, Inauguration Day, is named Obama.
Encounters with injured or harassed
sea turtles should be reported to the
Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation
Commission at 1-888-404-3922.
To see live sea turtles, visit the Miami
Seaquarium, the Sea Turtle Hospital, orjoin
one of the local events in August or Septem-
ber when rescued baby sea turtles will be
released. Contact the Miami-Dade County
sea turtle program in the Parks and Recre-
ation division for details: 305-365-3018.
Because of their worldwide distribu-
tion and migration patterns, sea turtles
are canaries in the oceanic coal mine.
Their decline indicates that something is
wrong with the deep blue sea.
The least we can do for them, in
word and in deed, is turn out the lights.

Feedback: letters(@ibiscaynetimes.com


_- 'rLn ii, -m 602immunuy fVbr t r w3 e s
SSmall class sizes
High-tch classrooms
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AIffordable private school
SBefore & after care available


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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com August 2009


01



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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009






COLUMNISTS: KIDS AND THE CITY


Never Too Busy for Fun


By Jenni Person
BT Contributor
Last month my sister and I took our
mother on a cruise to celebrate
a special birthday. It was just
us chicks. As such we were seated at a
dinner table with two other women trav-
elling without men, Pearl and Blanche
from Inverrary. Pearl was very clear
about her opinions. For example, she
thought all our schools are no good and
that all students "today" carry weapons.
One of the biggest problems, she pointed
out, is working mothers.
With that, my sister's otherwise
calm tone got surprisingly terse. "That's
just not true," she said. In response to
Pearl invoking of the infamous 1980s
term "latch-key kid," she responded,
"That's a very dated idea."
That prompted me to speak my
mind, and I told her that women need
to have careers, need to be counted, and
especially these days, need to provide a
second income. It's a continuing para-
digm shift in which we're learning to
balance career and family, and redefine
parenting to account for the schedules
of two people rather than just one. It's
a change that has led to the growth of
after-school programs, which are more
dynamic and educational than ever. And
it has made weekend time more sacred
for families than ever before.
My kids see two responsible adults
accomplishing their visions, supporting
their family, and making time to be there
for them, loving and cherishing them,
and we hope, feeling our pride in them.
We maneuver our schedules, sacrifice
as generations of parents before have


Public parks and after-school programs are


WEsNn '57N IM1
I 1- l

saw1


sacrificed, and work as a team to find
every available moment of kid coverage
and family time to develop and model a
strong sense of confidence and responsi-
bility in our children.
As my kids get older, I have come
to rely on their after-school experienc-
es to provide the enrichment I believe
rounds out their development. I am
looking for ways to bring arts educa-
tion and sports into their lives in strong
ways, and in doing so, I'm always
looking around the neighborhood for
new opportunities, and for activities
we can experience as a family.
One thing I've learned in my parent-
ing pursuits over the years is that Morn-
ingside Park in Miami's Upper Eastside
has an extraordinary and accessible
enrichment program and lots of great
offerings for families. The overall after-
school program runs Monday through
Friday from 2:30 to 7:00 p.m. For Miami
residents the cost is $60 per child per


ood for kids and parents alike


programs are $35 a month. And don't
feel left out, parents. There are adult
clinics for $10 an hour Tuesdays and
Thursday, as well as monthly tourna-
ments for adults. You can fit it in while
your kids are having their lessons or
league play.
Although the park is facing budget
cuts and will limit some daily activi-
ties to weekends only, you can still fit
in some family fun now, before school
starts, if you're taking time off in
August. The kayak center is currently
open 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Monday
through Friday. As of August 24, it will
be open only on weekends, but that's
the best time for family activity anyway.
Kayak rental is $5 per person per hour.
Sailboats are also available and rent for
$35 for two hours. By the way, August is
also the time to get in your park swim-
ming as the pool closes after the Labor
Day weekend. For more information
about all park activities call 305-754-
1242. You can get there via NE 50th
Terrace east from Biscayne Boulevard.
One last thing about weekend time.
My Morningside friends Sandy and
David have been telling me about the
Bookmobile in Morningside Park, and
I recently had a chance to go. What an
awesome experience it was as my kids
entered the mobile library full of excite-
ment about all the books in the park they
love. We chose books and videos and
sat and read together, a very nice family
weekend moment. It's waiting for you
every Saturday from 10:00 to 11:00 a.m.
It's a terrific way to instill the library
habit in ourpost-latch-key kids.

Feedback: letters(@ibiscaynetimes.com


month and includes homework assis-
tance and recreational games. Competi-
tive sports are organized as intramural
leagues that involve no travel. And here's
the cool part of that: Kids not participat-
ing in the full after-school program can
join the sports leagues for only a $10 reg-
istration fee, which covers the entire year.
And kids who attend the Ada Merritt K-8
Center in East Little Havana (adamerritt.
dadeschools.net) can be picked up there
daily and brought to the park for after-
school programs and league play for just
$60 per month.
Sports programs include football
and soccer in the fall and basketball and
baseball in the spring. In addition, there
is the tennis center at Morningside Park.
After-school lessons for kids in the new
school year will be held Mondays and
Wednesday or Tuesdays and Thursdays
at 3:30, 4:30, or 5:30 p.m., depending
on age and level. There will also be
kids' classes on Saturday mornings. All


PARENTS MORNING OUT
ltsS anitrodsctlan to pramcboag



L _'
lid-&fib ona


Miami Shores Presbyterian Church welcomes children from 18 months to 3 years of age.
DCF Licensed (#C11MD1694), fully trained staff, creative programming
Mon-Wed-Fri or Tues-Thurs, 9:00 am to 12 noon. Register now for Fall Sessions
For more information call program director Karen Boyd at 305-754-9541

August 2009 Biscayne Times www.Biscayne~t~limeslcom


cso
IJp


305-757-6500
Come for the fun
Stay for the Education


August 2009


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com






COLUMNISTS: PAWSITIVELY PETS


Big People with Little Dogs


By Lisa Hartman
BT Contributor


from readers following last month's
column, "Why Do Dogs Bark?"
We'll get to some of those soon, but this
month I decided to ask a couple of ques-
tions of my own, questions you may not
often hear. I put them to a few friends
and to Biscayne Times readers who've
contacted me.
What do you think is the hardest
;i,,i, about owning a small dog?
Jennifer Phillips answered: "They can
fit under the table when they grab a piece
of clothing or other miscellaneous item
and it's hard to get it back. Ha ha ha!"
A friend of Jennifer added: "Smaller
dogs are more nervous and have trouble
adapting to large groups of people and
socializing in public, and also when
many people come to the house." (Jen-
nifer agreed.)
Jane Pontarelli responded with this:
"Nothing. Small dogs live longer, have
fewer illnesses, and you can take them
almost anywhere. The older I get, the
smaller the dog (lol). The one problem
is, small dogs think they are big and
will attack everything and everyone
that comes near you. I think that's the
best part...."
Annie Hawkins wrote: "It looks kind
of scary to me to see a one-pound dog
walking on a city street. Someone could
step on it. Maybe neon-colored leashes
would help."
Larry Keigwin observed that small
dogs "think their owners are their slaves."
Here are my own comments: One


- From Fifi perspective, it a world full ofscary giants -
of the things I hear
most from owners is
that their small dog is
very demanding, and
that they feel guilty if
they don't give their
pets almost everything
they want. Another is
that they're difficult '"
to housebreak. One
other comment I hear
frequently is that their
small dog is not social,
"protects" them, and
growls and/or snaps
at people trying to say
hello to them.
My response is
always: "Wouldn't you
act that way if people
treated you like a toy?"
Small dogs are ex-
pected to be petted and F.
held by anyone at any- VsL-
time. (Wrong!) They are
expected to be stuffed Of course, many little dogs are con-
animals come to life. One minute they sidered babies by their owners, and are
are sleeping on their bed and the next a source of pride, garnering admiration
whoosh! they're flying through the and adoration from everyone they en-
air and into someone's arms. People are counter. However, this can have undesir-
trying to kiss them. Children are chasing able consequences, in part because most
them. They're forced to wear goofy little small dogs' anti-social behavior is well
clothes and shoes. Just when they think rewarded by the owners.
they're safe in their owner's arms, a Here is an example: The dog is brought
stranger's hand comes at their face to pet to a social event and, after the fifth stranger
them and rub their ears! pets him (the owner being unaware the
Imagine standing 12 inches tall (or less) dog is not comfortable with this or has had
and having to look up at everything. (This enough), the dog growls at the person. The
is actually a good experiment. Lie on your loving owner then tells Little Precious: "It's
stomach on the floor and look up at every- okay, it's okay," pets and kisses the dog,
thing. Now imagine giants pickingyou up!) and thus rewards the bad behavior.


Many owners often follow this with
one or more counterproductive behaviors
of their own, such as:
Telling the person on the receiving
end of the growl: "It's okay, she's really
friendly. Here, you can hold her." This
puts the poor dog right in the jaws of the
big human they find scary.
Scolding their dog for embarrassing
them. "Mimi, how could you! Bad dog!"
Which now punishes the dog twice.
Rationalizing the anti-social be-
havior of their little ball of fluff. "She's
trying to protect me!" Um, possibly. But
usually you have just been rewarding
bad behavior, and not reading your dog
properly to know when he or she has had
enough. All your attention has reinforced
the growling and snapping, which is fur-
ther reinforced by keeping people away.
And so a vicious cycle is born.
One thing many small dogs do not
have is choice, something much more
common to a Rottweiler or German
shepherd. By and large, people are likely
to askfirst if they can pet your Rottwei-
ler (if they're interested in meeting him
at all), and they certainly will not be
swooping him up into their arms.
Your fluffy little Maltese doesn't
always have that choice, but should. You
are your pet's first line of defense, and
you need to monitor your dog for stress.
The same rules of socialization apply
to small dogs and big ones alike. They
should be gently and positively exposed
to new people, places, and things at a
very young age. And it should be their
choice to say hello. (Of course, strangers
bearing yummy treats makes them seem
Continued on page 43


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FULL-SERVICE ANIMAL CLINIC

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YOU MAY COME TO US, OR WE CAN COME TO YOU


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009






COLUMNISTS: PAWSITIVELY PETS


Little Dogs
Continued from page 42
all the more friendly.) Don't be afraid
to tell people "no" once in awhile when
they say they want to pet your pup.
On the flip side of my recent poll, I
asked friends and BT readers: What is the
easiest ;ii,,i, about owning a big dog?
Not surprisingly, I received fewer
responses to this one.
KerriDennis wrote: k lics ic ,, l,,o.
easy about owning a big dog? How about two


dogs? For me, they scare away people I don't
like! Even though they are my gentle giants."
I would like to add that, over-
all, big dogs are easier to house-
break, easier to reach (no need
One
to bend down), and easier to find
have
since they can't hide as easily. But
in truth, it's really hard to identify are
something easy about owning
them. Still, it's nice to look on the
bright side.
As for small dogs, I would say that
the hardest thing about them is their very


size, the constant bending down to get
them which is why mine is trained to


? thing many small dogs do not
Sis choice. By and large, people
likely to ask first if they can pet
your Rottweiler.


jump into my arms.
Here's something funny: One of


the most common calls for help I get is
to housebreak small dogs. Yet not one
person I polled even mentioned that. Way
to go, clients and readers!

Lisa Hartman is head dog trainer for
Pawsitively Pets. You can reach her at
pawsitivelypetsonline@yahoo.com or
www.pawsitivelypetsonline.com. You can
also keep up with her and her dogs on
Facebook at www.profile.to/dogtrainer.

Feedback: letters @biscaynetimes.com


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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com







COLUMNISTS. YOUR GARDEN


First the Rain, Then the Pain

SAfter the deluge come the vines, lovely but loathsome


By Jeff Shimonski
BT Contributor

he rainy season is upon us with a
vengeance. In June we recorded
25 inches of rainfall at Jungle
Island, with the rain gauge actually
overflowing on at least one occasion. Ev-
erywhere you look the landscapes seem
so green and lush. All this lushness, of
course, means lots of pruning is in order.
This time of year is also when all manner
of vines pop up and start to cover your
garden at what seems to be an unbeliev-
able rate of growth. Many of these vines
may be quite attractive with brightly
colored flowers, odd-looking fruit, or
distinct foliage but they are insidious.
Some of the weedy vines we are
seeing belong to the cucumber family.
The creeping cucumber vine (Melothria
pendula) has tiny green fruit that may
reach one inch long and turn black when
they ripen. These are perfect replicas of
the large, delicious cucumbers we just
harvested at home in our containerized
organic garden. But I don't know if these
tiny cucumber relatives are safe for us to
eat, so leave them to the birds.
Another relative of the cucumber
that crops up here in the rainy season is
the wild balsam apple or conde amor, as
my older Cuban friends call it. This Old
World vine has very attractive, bright-
orange or yellow fruit that opens to
show numerous red seeds within. The
fine soft foliage has a distinct fragrance,
especially when handled. I know some
folks from the Caribbean who utilize the
leaves to make a medicinal tea.
We have an abundance of Ipo-
moea species, or Morning-glory vines,
I11 UL "


growing here, from
the beaches to our
hammocks. There are
hundreds of Ipomoea
species that grow in
tropical climes, and
I'm sure everyone is
familiar with a few.
The common sweet
potato is an Ipomoea.
It can be an attractive
ground cover, with
either red or green
leaves. The flowers
are usually white
with a reddish throat.
Sweet potatoes can be
grown from cuttings
or seed. If from cut-
tings, you will have


The Glades morning-glory (Ipomoea sagittata) likes
wet areas and grows like crazy.


the same plant and
tuber as the parent plant; if from seeds,
variation in tuber quality or foliage color
can occur.
There are many other annual Ipo-
moea species with very colorful flowers
found in our area. Two of the more di-
minutive vines with very small, distinct
leaves are the scarlet Morning glory
(Ipomoea hederifolia) and the cypress
vine (Ipomoea quamoclit). They have
tiny reddish-orange, trumpet-shaped
flowers. Several other species have
silver-dollar-size flowers in brilliant blue
or purple.
Growing on the sand of our beaches,
we often find the railroad vine (Ipomoea
pes-caprae). This species has funnel-
shaped lavender flowers and large coarse
leaves. I've utilized this vine successfully
to stabilize slopes where other vegetation
would not grow. Other Ipomoea species
AL YP --Z k.C


have flowers in yellow, orange, or white.
The common Morning glories in our area
can be very weedy, and if not controlled,
they can completely cover a large shrub or
small tree, causing that plant to loose all its
foliage for lack of sunlight.
Whenever heavy rainfall occurs here,
there are two species of Discorea we
need to watch for. They have attractive,
light-green, heart-shaped leaves. The
leaves of the air potato (Discorea bul-
bifera) can reach dinner-plate size, while
winged yam (Discorea alata) leaves are
similar but remain smaller. These vines
are not related to the edible potato or the
Morning glories. They grow from round
tubers in the ground that I've seen as
large as softballs.
The tubers can also grow on the
plant among the foliage, hence the
names air potato and winged yam. These


Stubers will drop off and start growing.
They are extremely aggressive vines and
should be removed. Make sure to remove
Sthe tubers from the ground. If not, the
vine will grow back immediately. Cold
Weather or a very dry winter will cause
4 Discorea vines to disappear, but the
tubers can remain underground for
years, waiting for the optimum time to
produce foliage.
Many species of Discorea are
included in a group of plants known as
caudiciforms. This is a horticultural ap-
pellation for plants from many different
families that produce a caudex, a large
tuber or thick stem that, in their native
habitat, stores water or food to enable
them to survive in some very harsh
environments. There are many interest-
ing Discoreas with this peculiar growth
habit. They make great potted plants but
should never be allowed to wander off
into the landscape.
I had written in a column a while
back about a passion vine that we at
Jungle Island were controlling because
it is very aggressive. We were allowing
the vine to grow because it is a larval
food plant for Julia butterflies. Which
is a reminder that many of the vines we
see cropping up in our backyards during
the rainy season are invasive species
that need to be controlled or eliminated
before they overwhelm our landscapes.

/. \NI,,,. ,,'I-, is an ISA-certified munic-
ipal arborist, director of horticulture at
Jungle Island, and principal of Tropical
Designs of Florida. Contact him atjeff@
tropicaldesigns. com.

Feedback: letters(ibiscaynetimes.com


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com August 2009


SALON GILB ERT



HAIRCUT + BLOWDRY $60



LUNCH EXPRESS,
MANICURE + BLOWDRY $38


N 5.5 7 3 4 288 wwwi -,,o ID n 9i lb erl c orr


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009





























RESTAURANT LISTINGS


The Biscayne Corridor's most comprehensive restaurant guide. Total this month: 203.


Brickell / Downtown

Restaurant listings for the BT Dining
Guide are written by Pamela Robin
Brandt. Every effort has been made
to ensure accuracy, but restaurants
frequently change menus, chefs, and
operating hours, so please call ahead
to confirm information. Icons ($$$)
represent estimates for a typical meal
without wine, tax, or tip. Hyphenated
icons ($-$$$) indicate a significant range
in prices between lunch and dinner
menus, or among individual items on
those menus.
$= $10 and under
$$= $20
$$$= $30
$$$$= $40
$$$$$= $50 and over



Abokado
900 S. Miami Ave., 305-347-3700
www.abokadosushi.com
Hamachi chiles rellenos? Shiso leaf nachos" topped with raw
spicytuna, kalware sprouts, and other Asian ingredients? The
Viva, a sushi roll that starts with standard Japanese (spicy tuna,
cucumber, avocado), adds Latin sabor (Jalapeno, cilantro),
wraps it in a flour tortilla, and garnishes it with heat (spicy
snow crab mix)? Miami hasn't tended to initiate too manyfood
firsts," but this Japanese/Pan-Latn fusion place is surely one
Prices are higher than at neighborhood sushi spots, but in keep-
ing with Abokado's Mary Brickell Village neighbors $$$$

Acqua
1435 Brickell Ave., Four Seasons Hotel
305-381-3190
Orignally an Italian/Mediterranean restaurant this comfortably
elegant upscale spot switched chefs in 2006, resulting in a
complete menu renovation Thalland's famed sense of culinary
balance is now evident throughout the global (though primarily
Asian or Latin American-inspired) menu, in dishes like yuzu/
white soya-dressed salad of shrimp tempura, a tender pork
shank glazed with spicy Szechuan citrus sauce, or lunchtime's
rare tuna burger with lively wasabl aloli and wakame salad For
dessert few chocoholics can resist a buttery-crusted tart filled
with sinfully rich warm chocolate custard $$$$$

Area 31
270 Biscayne Boulevard Way
305-524-5234; www area31restaurant com
Not that the sleek interior of this seafood restaurant (named for
fishing area 31, stretchingfrom the Carolinas to South America)
isn't a glamorous dining setting But we'd eat outside From the
expansive terrace of the Epic condo and hotel on the Miami
River, the views of Brickell's high-rises actually make Miami look
like a real city Its hard to decide whether the eats or drinks are
the most impressive The food is impeccably fresh regional fish.
prepared in a clean Mediterranean-influenced style The cock-
tails are genuinely create Luckily you don't have to choose
one or the other $$$-$$$$


Azul
500 Brickell Key Dr., 305-913-8254
Floor-to-ceiling picture windows showcase Biscayne Bay
But diners are more likely to focus on the sparkling raw bar
and open kitchen, where chef Clay Conley crafts imaginatve
global creations many of them combinations, to satisfy
those who want it all One offering A Study in Tuna," includes
tuna sashim., Maine crab, avocado tempura, and caviar, with
several Asian sauces Moroccan lamb is three preparations
(grilled chop, harissa-marnated loin, and bastlla, the famed
savory-sweet Middle Eastern pastry stuffed with braised shank
$$$$$

Bali Caf6
109 NE 2nd Ave., 305-358-5751
While Indonesian food isn'teasytofind in Miami downtown
has secret stashes -small joints catering to cruiseship and
construction workers This cute, exotically decorated cafe has
survived and thrived for good reason The homey cooking is
delicious, and the friendly family feel encourages even the timid
of palate to try something new Novices will want Indonesia's
signature rjsttafel, a mix-and-match collection of small dishes
and condiments to be heaped on rice Note bring cash No
plastic accepted here $-$$

The Bar at Level 25 (Conrad Hotel)
1395 Brickell Ave., 305-503-6500
On the Conrad's 25th floor. The Bar's picturewindowed space
is notjusta watering hole with panoramic views At lunch it's
an elegant sandwich bar, at night its a raw bar (with pristine
coldwater oysters) and (best) a tapas bar serving pintxos Thats
justthe Basque word for tapas, but here there nothing mere
about the generously portioned small plates They range from
traditional items like cod fish equixada and saffron-sauteed
Spanish artchokes to inventive inspirations like foie gras and
goat cheese-stuffed empanadas $$$

Blu Pizzeria e Cucina
900 S. Miami Ave. (Mary Brickell Village)
305-381-8335; www.blurestaurantsgroup.com
If the super-sleek interior is too formal for you, opt for a
casual patio table while studying the menu over an order
of warm gnocchetti bread sticks, or creamy-centered supply
alla romana (porcini-studded tomato and mozzarella rice
croquettes) The place looks upscale, but prices of even the
fanciest entrees don't exceed $20 The fare is wide-ranging,
but you can't go wrong with one of the thin-crusted, brick-
oven pizzas, whether a traditional margherita or inventive
asparagi e granchi (with lump crab, lobster cream, mozza-
rella, and fresh asparagus) $$-$$$

Caf6 Sambal
500 Brickell Key Dr.
305-913-8358; www.mandarinoriental.com/miami
Though the Mandarin Oriental Hotel describes this space as its
casual hotel restaurant," many consider it a more spectacular
diningsetting than the upscale Azul, upstairs, owingto the
option of dining outdoors on a covered terrace directly on the
waterfront The food is Asian-inspired, with a few Latn and
Mediterranean accents For the health-conscious, the menu
includes low-cal choices For hedonists there's a big selection of
artsan sakes $$$-$$$$$

Miami's Finest Caribbean Restaurant
236 NE 1st Ave., 305-381-9254
Originally from Jamaica, proprietor Miss Pat has been serving
her traditional homemade island specialties to downtown office
workers and college students since the early 1990s Most
popular item here might be the weekday lunch special of erk


NEW THIS MONTH
1111111111111111111111111111111111111111111111111111111111111111111111111111111111



BRICKELL I DOWNTOWN

Ecco Pizzateca & Lounge
161 SE Lst St.
305-960-1900














MIDTOWN / WYNWOOD / DESIGN DISTRICT

Bay View Grille

305-536-6414
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UPPER EASTSIDE

Revales Italian Ristorante
8601 ecda iE Bl~d.
305-7531010
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plantains, and salad, so no one leaves hungry $
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Dolores, But You Can Call Me Lolita
1000 S. Miami Ave., 305403-3103
www.doloreslolita.com
From the stylish setting in Miamis historic Firehouse No 4 one
would expect a mghty pricy meal But entrees which range
from Nuevo Latino-style gnger/orangeglazed pork tenderloin to
a platter of Kobe mini-burgers, all cost either $18 or $23 And


r,: ,,,,r h .: I, 1h,-,,- I I II I
I -:




The Crab House
1551 79th Si. Causeadt
305-161.7015
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305-7592211






11W-111
S r,: '1,, : I, : , 1 I :.l , ,- 3 :,:,,311 I,, : 1.:







Petit Rouge
12409 BiSa, rnE BEld.
305-%92-7676














lbut treats ike Serrano ham cruetas a asplnach/leek tart with
-1 ,-J I.: .. I, 1 1 -,, rI,: 1 ''" 1 ,l ':: 3 -,










bales The best seats are on the glam rooftop patio
.Fresco California Bistro
r:1 ,' I r, I,:, : h i : i .....3 r 1 ,'I,- ,














This festilvely decorated Indoor/outdoor bistro packs a
lot of party spirit In.:to a small space, a large variety of









Continued on page 46
f '-Co ti ue on.-- 31. prl1a.geH i. 4.1.- 6--3 .]_3'


August 2009 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com








DINING GUIDE


Red, White, and You

Agreeable wine (and occasionally beer) for $12 or less


By Bill Citara
BT Contributor


If there's anything good that has come
from our current economic Arma-
geddon, it's the opportunity to cry
in our beer. Sure, this space has mostly
been a forum to whine in our wine, and
you can certainly scream in your scotch,
rant in your rum, or vent in your vodka.
But crying in your beer well, that's as
Amurkin as Mom, apple pie, and driving
while texting your best friend about all
the idiots on the road.
Not just any beer, though. As all
true hopheads know, there are plenty of
artisanal alternatives to the insipid brews
of Anheuser-E\ 1ci thilni beers produced
to maximize flavor, character, and com-
plexity rather than sell 10 bazillion gal-
lons to thirsty suburbanites at 7-Eleven.
Of course, that doesn't make choos-
ing among these high-quality brewskis
any easier. Go to your average liquor
store and you'll find more obscure craft
beers lurking on the shelves than there
are Goldman Sachs executives sucking
at the taxpayer tit. So to make sobbing in


your suds a more satisfying and buzz-
worthy endeavor, we hereby present this
small roster of first-rate craft beers all
ales of various types, because even hop-
heads have to know their limits.
We'll start with India Pale Ales, a
name derived from the practice of British
brewers in the late 18th Century to boost
the level of hops and alcohol in their beers
so they'd survive shipping to such far-off
outposts of the British empire as India.
So IPAs tend to be big, bold, manly-man
brews, the kind that would mug a wussy
brew like Corona in an alley.
Manlier still are the "double" or "Im-
perial" IPAs, like Maximus from Laguni-
tas Brewing Co., Mad River's Steelhead
and Maharaja from Colorado's Avery
Brewing Co. The Maximus is typical of
that style, with malty, floral aromas, a deep
bronze color, thick, creamy texture, and
flavors of fruit and spice with sweetish
caramel overtones. Steelhead cranks it
up even more, a dark viscous brew with
earthy, nutty, cherry flavors and faintly
floral finish.
The Maharaja is something different,
smelling more astringent and grainy, with


spicy notes reminiscent of
Belgian beers and a pro-
nounced but pleasantly bitter
aftertaste. Great Divide
Brewing's Titan IPA does
the Belgian spice and citrus
thing too, and though lighter
in heft, it is equally intense
in hoppy flavor.
On the lighter side
is Rogue Brewery's Dead
Guy Ale. It's an easy-
drinking brew that starts
off with toasty and deli-
cately caramel aromas, then
moves on to crisp, cleans-
ing hop flavors. On one of
our brutal South Florida
summer days, nothing refreshes like an
ice-cold Dead Guy.
Sierra Nevada is not exactly a
boutique brewery, but its signature Pale
Ale stands its own against any artisanal
competition. It's an elegant brew, light
on the palate, with a pleasing amber
color, well-balanced between hops and
malt, and the kind of beer you can drink
without feeling overpowered.


Of all the beers guzzled I mean,
sampled for this tasting, the hands-
down favorite was Stone Brewing Co.'s
Arrogant Bastard Ale. "Luscious"
describes it quite nicely, bursting with
nutty, toffee-like aromas and a complex
array of flavors nutty, toasty, spicy,
malty that fill the mouth and are far
too compelling to, you know, cry into.

The North Miami Total Wine &
More (14750 Biscayne Blvd., 305-
354-3270) offers Arrogant Bastard
for $4.99 (24 oz.), Steelhead
and Titan for $1.99 (12 oz.), and
Sierra Nevada for $1.29 (12 oz.).
Dead Guy Ale is available at the
Biscayne Commons Publix (14641
Biscayne Blvd., 305-354-2171) for
$6.49 (24 oz.), while the Maximus
and Maharaja can be found at the
North Miami Crown Wine & Spirits
(12555 Biscayne Blvd., 305-892-
9463) for $4.25 (24 oz.) and $8.95 (24
oz.), respectively.



Feedback: letters(,biscaynetimes.com


Restaurant Listings
Continued from page 45

equation, the owners add a touch of Cal-Mex (like Tex-
Mex but more health conscious) Menu offerings range
from designer pizzas and pastas to custardy tamales, but
the bistro's especially known for imaginative meal-size
salads, like one featuring mandarin oranges, avocado,
apple, blue cheese, raisins, candied pecans, and chicken
on a mesclun bed $$

Garcia's Seafood Grille and Fish Market
398 NW N. River Dr., 305-375-0765
Run by a fishing family for a couple of generations, this vener-
able Florida fish shack is the real thing No worries about the
seafood's freshness, on their way to the dining deck overlooking
the Miami River, diners can view the retail fish market Best
preparations are the simplest When stone crabs are in season,
Garcia's claws are as good as Joe's but considerably cheaper
The local fish sandwich is most popular grouper, yellowtail
snapper, or mahl mahl $-$$

Grimpa Steakhouse
901 Brickell Plaza, 305455-4757
www.grimpa.com
This expansive indoor/outdoor Brazilian eatery is sleekly
contemporary, but no worries The classic sword-wielding
gauchos are here, serving a mind-reeling assortment of
skewered beef, chicken, lamb, pork, sausages, and fish And
included in the price (dinner $47, lunch $34) is the tradition-
al belly-busting buffet of hot and cold prepared foods, salad,
cold cuts, and cheeses A pleasant, nontraditional surprise
unusual sauces like sweet/tart passion fruit or mint, tomato-
based BBQ, and mango chutney along with the ubiquitous
chimichurrl $$$$-$$$$$

II Gabbiano
335 S. Biscayne Blvd., 305-373-0063
www.ilgabbianomiami.com
Its location atthe mouth of the Miami River makes this ultra-
upscale Italian spot (especially the outdoor terrace) the perfect


power lunch/business dinner alternative to steakhouses And
the culinary experience goes way beyond the typical meat mar-
ket thanks in part to the flood of freebies that's a trademark of
Manhattan's II Mulino, originally run by II Gabbianos owners
The rest of the food Pricy but portions are mammoth And
the champagnecream-sauced housemade ravioli with black
truffles? Worth every penny $$$$$

Indochine
638 S. Miami Ave.
305-379-1525; www.indochinebistro.com
Indochine has succeeded by morphing from mere restaurant
into hip hangout Copious special events draw everyone from
downtown business types to the counterculture crowd Notthat
there's anything mere" about the range of food served from
three Asian nations Light eaters can snack on Vietnamese
summer rolls or Japanese sushi rolls For bigger appetites, there
are Thai curries and Vietnamese specialties like pho richly fla-
vored beef soup with meatballs, steak slices, rice noodles, and
add-in Asian herbs and sprouts $$-$$$

Iron Sushi
120 SE 3rd Ave., 305-373-2000
(See Miami Shores listing)

La Loggia Ristorante and Lounge
68 W. Flagler St.
305-373-4800; www.laloggia.org
This luxuriantly neo-classical yet warm Italian restaurant
was unquestionably a pioneer in revitalizing downtown With
alternatives like amaretto-tinged pumpkin agnollotl in sage
butter sauce and cilantro-spiced white bean/vegetable salad
dressed with truffle oil, proprietors Jennifer Porciello and
Horatio Oliveira continue to draw a lunch crowd that returns
for dinner, or perhaps just stays on through the afternoon,
fueled by the Lawyer's Liquid Lunch, a vodka martini spiked
with sweetened espresso $$$

La Moon
144 SW 8th St., 305860-6209
At four in the morning, nothing quells the munchies like
a Crazy Burger, a Colombian take on a trucker's burger


beef patty bacon, ham, mozzarella, lettuce, tomato, and
a fried egg, with an arepa corn pancake bun" While this
tiny place's late hours (till 6 00 a m Friday and Saturday)
are surprising the daytime menu is more so In addition to
Colombian classics, there's a salad Nicoise with grilled fresh
tuna, seared salmon with mango salsa, and other yuppie
favorites $-$$

Le Boudoir Brickell
188 SE 12th Terr.305-372-2333
www.leboudoirmiami.com
At this French bakery/cafe, mornings start seriously with
choices ranging from quality cheese, charcuterle/pate, or
smoked salmon platters to chic Continental and complete
American breakfasts At lunch, generously salad-garnished,
open-faced tartines are irresistible But sophisticated salads
and homemade soups make the choice tough And do not skip
dessert Superb sweets include rich almond/fresh raspberry or
properly tangy lemon tarts, traditional Madeleines airy layered
mousses, and addictve mini-macaroon sandwich cookies with
daily-changing fillings $-$$

Miami's Chophouse
300 S. Biscayne Blvd.
305-938-9000
www.mannyssteakhouse.com
Located directly opposite Prime Blue Grille, Miami's most
intentionally female-friendly steakhouse (light decor, lightened
dishes), is Mannys, Miami's most intentionally masculine steak-
house Here, ensconced in your black leather booth, everything
is humongous dryaged choicegrade steaks like the Bludgeon
of Beef (a boldly flavorful 40-ounce bone-in rbeye, described as
part meat, part weapon"), king crab legs that dwarf the plate,
cocktail shrimp that could swallow the Loch Ness monster
whole, two-fisted cocktails that would fell a T-Rex Not for the
frail $$$$$

Novecento
1414 Brickell Ave., 305403-0900
www.bistronovecento.com
For those who think Argentne cuisine" is a synonym for beef
and more beef," this popular eaters wide range of more


cosmopolitan contemporary Argentine fare will be a revelation
Classic parrilla-grlled steaks are here for traditionalists, but
the menu is dominated by create Nuevo Latino items like a
new-style ceviche de chernia (lightly lime-marinated grouper
withjalapeios, basil, and the refreshing sweet counterpoint
of watermelon), or crab ravioli with creamy saffron sauce
Especially notable are the entree salads $$-$$$

Oceanaire Seafood Room
900 S. Miami Ave.
305-372-8862
www.theoceanaire.com
With a dozen branches nationwide, Oceanaire may seem more
All-American seafood empire than Florida fish shack, but menus
vary significantly according to regional tastes and fish Here in
Miami, chef Sean Bernal supplements signature starters like
lump crab cakes with his own lightly marinated, Peruvian-style
grouper ceviche The daily-changng, 15-20 specimen seafood
selection includes local fish seldom seen on local menus pom-
pano, parrot fish, amberjack But even flown-in fish (and the raw
bar's cold-water oysters) are ultra-fresh $$$$

Pasha's
1414 Brickell Ave.
305416-5116
The original branch on Lincoln Road was instantly popular, and
the same healthy Middle Eastern fast food is served at several
newer outlets The prices are low enough that you might sus-
pect Pasha's was a tax write-off rather than a Harvard Business
School project, which it was by founders Antonio Ellek and
Nicolas Cortes Dishes range from falafel and gyros to more
unusual items like muhammara (tangy walnut spread) and silky
labneh yogurt cheese Everything from pitas to lemonade is
made fresh, from scratch, daily $-$$

Peoples Bar-B-Que
360 NW 8th St., 305-373-8080
www.peoplesbarbque.com
Oak-smoked, falling-off-the-bone tender barbecued ribs
(enhanced with a secret sauce whose recipe goes back

Continued on page 47


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com August 2009


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009









DINING GUIDE


Restaurant Listings
Continued from page 46

several generations) are the main draw at this Overtown
institution But the chicken is also a winner, plus there's a
full menu of soul food entrees, including what many aficio-
nados consider our town's tastiest souse And it would be
unthinkable to call it quits without homemade sweet potato
pie or banana pudding, plus a bracing flop half iced tea,
half lemonade $-$$

Perricone's
15 SE 10th St.
305-374-9449; www.perricones.com
Housed in a Revolutionary-era barn (moved from
Vermont), this market/cafe was one of the Brickell area's
first gentrlfled amenities At lunch chicken salad is a
favorite, dinner's strong suit is the pasta list, ranging
from Grandma Jennie's old-fashioned lasagna to chichi
flocchi purses filled with fresh pear and gorgonzola And
Sunday's $15 95 brunch buffet ($9 95 for kids) fea-
turing an omelet station, waffles, smoked salmon and
bagels, salads, and more remains one of our town's
most civilized all-you-can-eat deals $$

Provence Grill
1001 S. Miami Ave., 305-373-1940
The cozy dining room (and even more charming outdoor ter-
race) evoke the south of France Butthe menu of French bistro
classics covers all regions country-style pate mason with onion
jam, roasted peppers, and cornichons, steak/frites (grilled rib-
eye with peppercorn cream sauce, fries, and salad), and four
preparations of mussels Deal alert An early-bird prx-fixe menu
(5 30-7 30 p m) offers soup or salad, entree, dessert and a
carafe of wine for $44 per couple $$$-$$$$

The River Oyster Bar
650 S. Miami Ave., 305-530-1915
www.therivermiami.com
This casually cool jewel is a full-service seafood spot as evi-
denced by tempting menu selections like soft-shell crabs with
grilled vegetables, corn relish, and remoulade There are even
a few dishes to please meat-and-potatoes diners, like short ribs


with macaroni and cheese But oyster fans will find it difficultto
resist stuffing themselves silly on the unusually large selection,
especially since oysters are served both raw and cooked fire-
roasted with sofrto butter, chorizo, and manchego There's also
a thoughtful wine list and numerous artsan beers on tap $$$

Rosa Mexicano
900 S. Miami Ave., 786-425-1001
www.rosamexicano.com
This expansive indoor/outdoor space offers a dining expe-
rience that's haute in everything but price Few entrees
top $20 The decor is both date-worthy and family-friendly
- festive but not kitschy And nonsophisticates needn't
fear, though nachos aren't available, there is nothing
scary about zarape de pato (roast duck between freshly
made, soft corn tortillas, topped with yellow-and-habane-
ro-pepper cream sauce), or Rosa's signature guacamole
en molcajete, made tableside A few pomegranate mar-
garitas ensure no worries $$$

Soya & Pomodoro
120 NE ist St., 305-381-9511
Life is complicated Food should be simple Thats owner
Armando Alfano's philosophy, which is stated above the
entry to his atmospheric downtown eatery And since
it's also the formula for the truest traditional Italian food
(Alfano hails from Pompeii), its fitting that the menu is
dominated by authentically straightforward yet sophisti-
cated Italian entrees There are salads and sandwiches,
too The most enjoyable place to dine is the secret, open-
air courtyard Alfano serves dinner on Thursdays only to
accompany local musicians and artists $-$$

Taste of Bombay
111 NE 3rd Ave.; 305-358-0144
Depending mostly on the predominant nationalities of down-
town construction workers at any given time, Taste of Bombay
has also served sushi, Philippine, and Chinese food Best


Tobacco Road
626 S. Miami Ave., 305-374-1198
www.tobacco-road.com
Prohibitonera speakeasy (reputedly a fave of Al Capone), gay
bar, strip club Previously all these, this gritty spot has been best
known since 1982 as a venue for live music, primarily blues
But it also offers food from lunchtme to late night (on week-
ends till 4 00 a m) The kitchen is especially known for its chil,
budget-priced steaks, and burgers There's also surprisingly
elegantfare, though, like a Norwegan salmon club with lemon
aioli A meat-smoker in back turns outtasty ribs $$


Midtown / Wynwood / Design District

Adelita's Caf6
2699 Biscayne Blvd., 305-576-1262
From the street (which is actually NE 26th, not Biscayne)this
Honduran restaurantseems unpromising but inside its bigger,
better, and busier than it looks Unlike many Latin American eater-
ies, this one sticks close to the source and proves a crowd-pleaser
On weekends especially the dining rooms are packed with families
enjoying authentic fare like baleadas (thick corn tacos), tajadas
(Honduras's take on tostones), rich meal-lna-bowl soups packed
with seafood or meat and veggies, and more $

Bengal
2010 Biscayne Blvd.
305-403-1976
At this Indian eatery the decor is cool and contemporary
muted gray and earth-tone walls, tasteful burgundy ban-
quettes And the menu touts "Modern Indian Cuisine"
to match the look Classicists, however, needn't worry
America's favorite familiar north Indian flavors are here,
though dishes are generally more mildly spiced and present-
ed with modern flair All meats are certified halal, Islam's
version of kosher which doesn't mean that observant
orthodox Jews can eat here, but Muslims can $$$


bet though, is the all-you-can-eat Indian buffet lunch spread,
featuring six changing entrees (a mix of meat, poultry, fish, and Bin No. 18
vegetable curries) plus veggie pakoras, rice, salad, chutneys, 1800 Biscayne Blvd.
hot naan bread, and a dessert The place looks plain outside, 786-235-7575
but its pleasantly exotic enough inside for a bargain business At this wine bar/cafe, the decor is a stylish mix of contempo-
lunch $$ rary (high loft ceilings) and Old World (tables made from wine


barrels) Cuisine is similarly geared to the area's smart new
residents creative sandwiches and salads at lunch, tapas
and larger internationally themed Spanish, Italian, or French
charcuterie platters at night Though the place is small and
family-run friendly, chef Alfredo Patino offers sophisticated
snacks like the figclutto arugula, gorgonzola dolce, caramel-
ized onions, pine nuts, fresh figs, and prosciutto Free park-
ing behind the building $$

Buena Vista Bistro
4582 NE 2nd Ave., 305-456-5909
If a neighborhood eatery like this one which serves supremely
satisfying bistro food were within walking distance of every
Miami resident, wed be a helluva hip food town Like true
Parisian bistros, its open continuously, everyday with prices so
low that you can drop in anytime for authentic rlllettes (a rustc
pate) with a crusty baguette, steak with from-scratch frites,
salmon atop ratatoullle, or many changing blackboard specials
Portions are plentiful So is free parking $$

Captain Joe Seafood & Pasta Grill
3401 N. Miami Ave. (Shops at Midtown)
305-573-6111
The Shops at Midtown eatery begns at 8 00 a m with with eggs,
pancakes, French toast and bagels After that its a seafood-
oriented menu of fastcasual food Best values are combo platters
such as shrimp and a grilled kebab, a heftyfried or grilled fsh
sandwich, or a Caribbean paella The last is more like a pilaf than
Spains saffron-rich creation, but a packed with enough mussels,
fish, calamari, chicken, and small shrimp to feed two $

The Daily Creative Food Co.
2001 Biscayne Blvd., 305-573-4535
While the food formula of this contemporary cafe is familiar
- sandwiches, salads, soups, breakfast food, and pastries,
plus coffee and fruit drinks a creative concept differenti-
ates the place Signature sandwiches are named after
national and local newspapers, including Biscayne Times,
giving diners something to chat about Sandwiches and
salads can also be do-it-yourself projects, with an unusually
wide choice of main ingredients, garnishes, breads, and con-
diments for the creatively minded $

Continued on page 48


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009








DINING GUIDE


Restaurant Listings
Continued from page 47


Delicias Peruanas
2590 Biscayne Blvd., 305-573-4634
Seafood is the specialty at this pleasant Peruvian spot, as
it was at the nearby original Delicias, run by members of
the same family The food is as tasty as ever, especially the
reliably fresh traditional ceviches, and for those who like
their fish tangy but cooked, a mammoth jalea platter As for
nonseafood stuff, Peru practically invented fusion cuisine (in
the 1800s), such as two traditional noodle dishes tallerin
saltado and tallerin verde $$

18th Street Caf6
210 NE 18th St.
305-381-8006; www.l8thstreetcafe.com
Most of the seating in this cool little breakfast/lunch room
is in a sort of giant bay window, backed with banquettes,
that makes the space feel expansive This pioneer-
ing place deserves to survive, even if just considering
the roast beef sandwich with creamy horseradish an
inspired classic combination that makes one wonder why
more places in this town don't serve it Other culinary
highlights include a turkey/pear/cheddar melt sandwich,
and reallysinful marshmallow-topped brownies $

Five Guys Famous Burger and Fries
3401 N. Miami Ave. (Shops at Midtown)
305-571-8345; www.fiveguys.com
No green-leaf faux health food here You get what the name
says, period, with three adds kosher dogs, veggie burgers, and
free peanuts while you wait Which you will, just bit, since
burgers are made fresh upon order Available in double or
one-pattysizes, there well-done butspurtnglyjulcy, and after
loading with your choice of free garnishes, even a little burger
makes a major meal Fries (regular or Cajun-spiced) are also
superior, hand-cut in-house from sourced potatoes $

Fratelli Lyon
4141 NE 2nd Ave.
305-572-2901; www.fratellilyon.com
Thi Italian cafe has been packed since the moment itopened No
surpriseto any who recall owner Ken Lon's pioneering Lyn Freres
gpurmetstore on Lncdn Road (1992-97), another jntthatwas
eactlywhat its neighborhood needed The restaurants artsan saluml,
cheeses, flavaful boutque olive als and more areso cutstandingthat
yxu can't help washing ita ao had a retail component Entrees include
properlyal dente pasta plus some regional specialties like Venean-
sye calves liver, rareyfound outside Italy $$$

Grass
28 NE 40th St.; 305-573-3355
Chef Michael Jacobs's menu travels beyond pan-Asian and
Mediterranean influences into the Americas Entrees range
from comfort food (cunningly reinvented mini pot pies) to high-
status extravagance (stoneseared, authentic Kobe steak) For
healthy grazers, raw-bar selections include ceviches and a large
seafood platter Theres also a snack menu pristinee coldwater
oysters, a crab salad timbale, parmesan-truffle shoestring fries,
mini-Kobe burgers) served till the wee hours, providing a wel-
come alternative to the Boulevard's fast food chains $$-$$$$$

Joey's Italian Caf6
2506 NW 2nd Ave.
305-438-0488
The first new restaurant in the Wynwood Cafe District this


stylsh indoor/outdoor Italian hangout is as casually cool as
one would hope -and as affordable Theres a fivebuck
half-serving of spaghetti al pomodoro and respectable vino for
under $30 And few can resist delicately thin, crunchy-crusted
pizzas like the creative Dolce e Piccante or orgasmic Carbonara
Pastas are fresh, produce is largely local, the mosaic-centered
decor is minimalist but inviting And no need to be wary of the
warehouse district at night Valet parking is free $$-$$$

Kafa Caf6
3535 NE 2nd Ave.
305-438-0114
www.kafamidtown.com
Operated by a brother/sister team (both originally from
Ethiopia), nothing on the breakfast and lunch menus tops
$8, and portions feed an army (or several starving art-
ists) Signature Item is the formidable Kafa Potato Platter
- home fries mixed with bacon, ham, peppers, onion,
and cheese, accompanied by eggs, fresh fruit, and bread
Lunch's burgers, salads, and overstuffed sandwiches
come with homemade soup or other sides, plus fruit
Dinner features an authentic Ethiopian menu, plus beer
and wine selections $-$$

Latin Caf6 2000
2501 Biscayne Blvd., 305-576-3838
www.latincafe2000.com
The menu is similar to that at many of our town's Latin cafes,
largely classic Cuban entrees and sandwiches, with a smat-
tering of touches from elsewhere in Latin America, such as
a Peruvian jalea mixta (marinated mixed seafood), or paella
Valenciana from Spain, which many Miami eateries consider a
Latin country Whatjustifies the new millennium moniker is the
more modern, yuppified/yucafled ambiance, encouraged by an
expansive, rustic wooden deck $$

Lemoni Caf6
4600 NE 2nd Ave.
305-571-5080
The menu here reads like your standard sandwiches/salads/
starters primer What it doesn't convey is the freshness of the
ingredients and the care that goes into their use Entree-size
salads range from an elegant spinach (goat cheese, pears,
walnuts, raisins) to chunky homemade chicken salad on a bed
of mixed greens Sandwiches (cold baguette subs, hot pressed
panins, or wraps, all accompanied by side salads) include a
respectable Cuban and a veggie wrap with a deceptively rich-
tasting lightsalad cream $-$$

Lime Fresh Mexican Grill
3201 N. Miami Ave. (Shops at Midtown)
305-576-5463
Like its South Beach predecessor, this Lime was an instant hit
as much for being a hip new Midtown hangout as for its careful-
ly crafted Tex-Mex food The concept is "fast casual" rather than
fast food meaning nice enough for a night out It also means
ingredients are always fresh Seafood tacos are about as exotic
as the menu gets, but the mahl mahl for fish tacos comes
from a local supplier, and salsas are housemade daily Niceties
include low-carb tortillas and many Mexican beers $

Lost & Found Saloon
185 NW 36th St., 305-576-1008
www.thelostandfoundsaloon-miami.com
Theres an artsy/alternative feel to this casual and friendly
Wynwood eatery, which, since opening as a weekday-only
breakfast and lunch joint in 2005, has grown with its neigh-
borhood Its now open for dinner six nights a week, serving
Southwestern-style fare at rock-bottom prices Dishes like pRion


and pepita-crusted salmon, chipotledrizzled endive stuffed with
lump crab, or customizable tacos average $5-$8 Also available
big breakfasts and salads, hearty soups, housemade pastries
like lemon-crusted wild berry pie, and a hip beer and wine list $

Maino Churrascaria
2201 Biscayne Blvd.
305-571-9044
This very upscale Brazilian steakhouse has all the features you
expect including all-you-can-eat meats carved tableside and a
lavish buffet What sets Maino apart from typical rodizio palaces
is its family-run feel, intimate rather than intmidating, plus its
attention to every detail While its rare at most rodiziojoints
to get meat done less than medium, Maino will cook to order
One other welcome difference There are a la carte starters and
pastas for lighter eaters and noncarnivores, and some lunch
specials Free parking, too $$-$$$$$

Mario the Baker
250 NE 25th St.
305-438-0228
(See North Miami listing)

Michael's Genuine Food and Drink
130 NE 40th St.
305-573-5550
An instant smash hit, this truly neighborhood-oriented res-
taurant from chef Michael Schwartz offers down-to-earth
fun food in a comfortable, casually stylish indoor/outdoor
setting Fresh, organic ingredients are emphasized, but
dishes range from cutting-edge (crispy beef cheeks with
whipped celeriac, celery salad, and chocolate reduction) to
simple comfort food deviled eggs, homemade potato chips
with pan-fried onion dip, or a whole wood-roasted chicken
There's also a broad range of prices and portion sizes to
encourage frequent visits Michael s Genuine also features
an eclectic, affordable wine list and a full bar $$-$$$$

Mike's at Venetia
555 NE 15th St., 9th floor, 305-374-5731
www.mikesvenetia.com
This family-owned Irish pub, on the pool deck of the Veneta
condo, for more than 15 years has been a popular lunch and
dinner hang-outfor local journalists and others who appreciate
honest cheap eats and drinks Regulars know daily specials are
the way to go Depending on the day, fish, churrasco, or roast
turkey with all the trimmings are all prepared fresh Big burgers
and steak dinners are always good A limited latenight menu
provides pizza, wings, ribs, and salad tll 3 00 a m $-$$

Moriano
3221 NE 2nd Ave., 786-953-8003
moriano.wordpress.com
Ultra-thin, crisp-crusted pizzas Madefrom-scratch specials like
green bean and parmesan soup, or prosciutto and mozzarella-
stuffed gnocchi that you really have not seen on every other
menu in town High-quality ingredients, wine and beer, low
prices, enthusiastic hands-on owners committed to arts-ori-
ented creativity A comfortable hang-out atmosphere This tiny
cafe, where "processed food" is a dirty word, has it all except
a high-visibility location or media hype So discover it for your-
selves (There's ample free street parking, too) $-$$

Orange Caf6 + Art
2 NE 40th St., 305-571-4070
The paintings hanging in this tiny glass-enclosed cafe are for
sale And for those who don't have thousands of dollars to
shell out for the local art on the walls, less than ten bucks will
get you art on a plate, including a Picasso chorizo, prosciutto,


manchego cheese, baby spinach, and basil on a crusty
baguette Other artfully named and crafted edibles include sal-
ads, daily soups, several pastas (like the Matisse, flocchi pouch-
es filled with pears and cheese), and house-baked pastries $

Out of the Blue Caf6
2426 NE 2nd Ave., 305-573-3800
www.outofthebluecafe.net
Forget impersonal chain coffeehouses This artist-friendly,
independent neighborhood cafe serves a full selection
of coffee drinks made with the award-winning beans of
Intelligentsia, a roasting company that works directly with
artisan growers to encourage sustainable agriculture Also
served breakfast and lunch sandwiches, imaginative salads,
soups, homemade pastries, and creamy fresh-fruit smooth-
ies With tables, sofas, and lounge chairs inside an old
Midtown house, plus free wireless Internet access, the space
is alsojust a pleasant place to hang out $

Pacific Time
35 NE 40th St., 305-722-7369
www.pacifictimemiami.com
Everyone knew Jonathan Eismann's original Pacific Time, for
many years Lincoln Road's only serious restaurant How differ-
ent is its new incarnation? Very, and its all good, starting with
far superior acoustics, an admirably green ecological policy,
and a neighborhood-friendly attitude While the addition of
Mediterranean influences to the Pacific Rim menu may sound
confusing, trust us A meal that includes a butter-grilled aspara-
gus with prosciutto, soft-cooked egg Milanese, and preserved
lemon, plus an Asian-accented creamy corn/leek soup with
Peeky Toe crab dumplings, coriander, and mustard oil makes
perfect sense on the tongue $$-$$$$

Pasha's
3801 N. Miami Ave.
305-573-0201
(See Brickell/Downtown listng)

Pizzafiore
2905 NE 2nd Ave., 305-573-0900
Dainty designer pizzas? At this New York-style pizzeria, its all
about heftiness A special slice/soda deal features two pizza
triangles bigger than most Miami mini-skirts Whole pies come
medium (large), large (huge), and extra-large (think truck tre)
And with fully loaded pizzas like the Supreme Meat Lover priced
only a few bucks more than a basic tomato/ cheese, it pays to
think big about toppings too Other Italian-American fare is also
available, notably pastas and subs $-$$

Primo's
1717 N. Bayshore Dr., 305-371-9055
The imposing, cavernous lobby of the Grand doesn't have
that "do drop in" locals' hangout vibe But this lively Italian
spot is actually a great addition to the neighborhood The
pizzas alone brick-oven specimens with toppings rang-
ing from classic pepperoni to prosciutto/arugula would
be draw enough But pastas also please diners' choice of
starch, with mix-and-match sauces and extras And the price
is right, with few entrees topping $20 The capper Its open
past midnight every day but Sunday $$

Sake Room
275 NE 18th St., 305-755-0122
www.sakeroom.com
Sake takes a back seat to sushi and sophisticated
decor at this small but sleek restolounge Among the

Continued on page 49


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3 A s*N 3 AP


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August 2009









DINING GUIDE


Restaurant Listings
Continued from page 48

seafood offerings, you won't find exotica or local catches,
but all the usual sushl/sashiml favorites, though in
more interesting form, thanks to sauces that go beyond
standard soy spicy srlracha, garlic/ponzu oil, and many
more Especially recommended the yuzu hamachi roll,
the lobster tempura makl, and panko-coated spicy shrimp
with hot-and-sour mayo and a salad $$-$$$

S & S Diner
1757 NE 2nd Ave.
305-373-4291
Some things never change, or so it seems at this classic diner
Open since 1938, people still line up on Saturday mornings,
waiting for a seat at the counter and enormous breakfasts
corned beef hash or crab cakes and eggs with grits, fluffy
pancakes, homemade biscuits with gravy and Georga sausage
- everything from oatmeal to eggs Benedict The lunch menu
is a roll call of the usual suspects, but most regulars ignore the
menu and go for the daily blackboard specials $-$$

Sra. Martinez
4000 NE 2nd Ave.
305-573-5474
No Biscayne Corridor resident needs to be told that this
livelytapas bar is the second restaurant that Upper Eastside
homegrrrl Michelle Bernsteln has opened in the area But its
no absentee celebrity-chef gig Bernsteln is hands-on at both
places Her exuberant yet firmly controlled personal touch is
obvious in nearlyfour dozen hot and cold tapas on the menu
Items are frequently reinvented Keepers include wild mush-
room/manchego croquetas with figjam, white bean stew, crisp-


But the American dumbing-down is minimal Manydishes are
far more authentic and skillfully prepared than those found
elsewhere in Miami, like delicate butflavorful yu pan quail
Moist sea bass fillet has a beautifully balanced topping of scal-
lion, ginger, cilantro, and subtlysweet/salty sauce And Peking
duck is served as three traditional courses crepewrapped
crispy skin, meat sauteed with crisp veggies, savory soup to
finish $$-$$$

W Wine Bistro
3622 NE 2nd Ave., 305-576-7775
Both bistro and retail wine shop, this Design District spot is
run by Florent Blanchet, an energetic young Frenchman who
was previously a wine distributor His former gig led to con-
nections that mean if wine lovers don't find the bottle they
want, Blanchet can probably get it within 24 hours Food is
sophisticated light bites like a shrimp club sandwich with
pancetta and sun-dried tomato aloli, and smoked duck salad
with goat cheese croutons and a poached egg At night there
aretapas $-$$

Zuperpollo Biztro Reztocafe
3050 Biscayne Blvd.
305-573-8485www.zuperpollo.com
This bistro is a branch of the popular Uruguayan eatery
Zuperpollo, on Coral Way since 1986 It's way in back,
pasta guard desk and an elevator bank, behind an
unmarked door Diners who find it discover an extensive
pan-Latin menu of breakfast food, salads, substantial
meat and fish entrees, homemade pastas and soups,
desserts, and sandwiches, including Uruguay's famed,
overstuffed chivito, sometimes called "a heart attack on a
bun And naturally, from the rotissere, there's the zigna-
ture zuper chicken $-$$


free lot across the road on NE 4th Court) is no problem even
if you re not getting your vehicle cleaned while consuming
the brick-oven pies (from a flaming open oven) that are this
popular pizzeria's specialty, along with executive chef Frank
Crupi's famed Philly cheese steak sandwiches Also avail-
able are salads and panini plus reasonably priced wines and
beers, including a few unusually sophisticated selections like
Belgium's Hoegaarden $$

Anise Taverna
620 NE 78th St.
305-758-2929; www.anisetaverna.com
The new owners of this river shack are bankingon Greek food
and festivity for success a good bet, judging from their wildly
popular previous eatery, Ouzo The mainly mezze menu ranges
from traditional Greek small plates to create Mediterranean-
inspired dishes like anise-scented fish croquettes with
spicy aioli But don't neglect large plates like whole grilled
Mediterranean fish (dorade or branzino), filleted tableside The
interior is charming and the outdoor deck on the Little River is
positively romantic $$-$$$

Boteco
916 NE 79th St., 305-757-7735
This strip of 79th Street is rapidly becoming a cool alt-
culture enclave thanks to inviting hangouts like this rustic
indoor/outdoor Brazilian restaurant and bar Especially
bustling on nights featuring live music, it's even more fun
on Sunday, when the fenced backyard hosts an informal
fair and the menu includes Brazil's national dish, feijoada,
a savory stew of beans plus fresh and cured meats
But the everyday menu, ranging from unique, tapas-like
pastels to hefty Brazilian entrees, is also appealing and
budget-priced $$


coated artchokes with lemon/coriander dip, and buttery bone Le Caf6
marrow piqued with Middle Eastern spices and balanced by tny Upper Eastside 7295 Biscayne Blvd., 305-754-6551
pickled salads $$$ For anyone who can't get over thinking of French food as intiml-
Andiamo dating or pretentious, this cute cafe with a warm welcome, and
Tony Chan's Water Club 5600 Biscayne Blvd. family-friendly French home cooking, is the antidote No fancy
1717 N. Bayshore Dr. 305-762-5751; www.andiamopizza.com food (or fancy prices) here, just classic comfortfood like onion
305-374-8888 Sharing a building with a long-established Morningside car soup, escargot daily fresh oysters, boeuf bourguignon (think
The decor at this upscale place, located in the Grand, looks too wash, Andiamo is also part of Mark Soyka's 55th Street Ultmate Pot Roast), Nicoise salad, quiche, and homemade
glitzyto serve anything but politely Americanized Chinese food Station which means ditching the car (in the complex's creme brulee A respectable beer and wine list is a welcome


addition, as is the housemade sangria Top price for entrees is
about $14 $-$$

Canela
5132 Biscayne Blvd., 305-756-3930
When this little neighborhood oasis opened, the formula was
Cuban cooking at lunch, Catalan tapas at night The menu
is now more uniform contemporarySpanish and pan-Latin
tapas, sandwiches, salads, sides, and entrees at all hours,
just a far more elaborate selection at night The tapas list is
impressive, with an unusually large selection of seafood and
vegetarian items such as spinach sauteed with pine nuts
and raisins Don't miss the ultra-creamy croquetas, grilled
asparagus with aloli, and habit-forming Brazilian cheese
bread $-$$$

Captain Crab's Take-Away
1100 NE 79th St., 305-754-2722
The drive-through window says "fast food," and so do this long-
lived seafood shack's low prices But there the resemblance
ends For about the price of a bucket of the Colonel's chicken
you can get a bucket of the Captain's savory garlic crabs The
Kings burger meal or the Captain's similarly priced fried (or gar-
lic boiled or New Orleans-spiced) shrimp meal? No contest Also
popular crab cakes and conch For fish haters, spicy or garlic
chicken wings are an option $-$$

Casa Toscana
7001 Biscayne Blvd., 305-758-3353
www.casatoscanamiami.com
Tuscan-born chef/owner Sandra Stefani cooked at
Norman's before opening this Upper Eastside jewel,
whose 30 original seats have been supplemented by
a wine room/garden for tasting events and private
dining Stefani travels regularly to Italy to find excit-
ing, limited-production wines and inspiration for truly
Tuscan specials with honest, authentic flavors, such
as grilled wild boar sausages with lentil croquettes
Menu favorites include pear and ricotta raviolini, grilled
eggplant slices rolled around herbed goat cheese and
sun-dried tomatoes, and a light ricotta tart with lemon
and rosemary $$$

Continued on page 50


August 2009 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com








DINING GUIDE


Restaurant Listings
Continued from page 49

Che Sopranos
7251 Biscayne Blvd., 305-754-8282
This branch of a Miami Beach Italian/Argentine pizzeria,
housed in a charming bungalow and featuring a breezy
patio, covers multicultural bases If the Old World Rucola
pizza (a classic Margherlta topped with arugula, pro-
sclutto, and shredded parmesan) doesn't do the trick, the
New World Especial (a Latin pie with hearts of palm and
boiled eggs) just might Also available are pastas, salads,
sandwiches, dinner entrees (eggplant parmigiana with
spaghetti, lomito steak with Argentinean potato salad),
and desserts (tiramisu or flan) $

Chef Creole
200 NW 54th St., 305-754-2223
Sparkling fresh Creole-style food is the star at chef/owner
Wilkinson Sejour's two tiny but popular establishments
While some meatier Haitian classics like grlot (fried pork
chunks) and oxtail stew are also available and a $3 99
roast chicken special seafood is the specialty here
crevette en sauce (steamed shrimp with Creole butter
sauce), lambl frl (perfectly tenderized fried conch), pois-
son gros sel (local snapper in a spicy butter sauce), garlic
or Creole crabs The Miami branch has outdoor tiki-hut
dining $-$$

Dogma Grill
7030 Biscayne Blvd.
305-759-3433
www.dogmagrill.com
What could induce downtown businessmen to drive to the
Upper Eastside to eat at a few outdoor-only tables just feet
from the busy Boulevard? From the day it opened, people
have been lining up for this stand's sauce-garnished, all-
beef, soy veggie, turkey, and chicken hot dogs The 22 varl-
etles range from simple to the elaborate (the Athens, topped
with a Greek salad, including extra-virgin olive oil dressing) to
near-unbelievable combinations like the VIP, which includes
parmesan cheese and crushed pineapple New addition
thick, juicy burgers $

East Side Pizza
731 NE 79th St., 305-758-5351
Minestrone, sure But a pizzeria menu with carrot ginger soup?
Similarly many Italian-American pizzerias offer entrees like
spaghetti and meatballs, but EastSide also has pumpkin ravioli
in brown butter/sage sauce, wild mushroom ravioli, and other
surprisingly upscale choices, including imported Peronl beer
As for the pizza, they are classic pies, available whole or by the
slice, made with fresh plum tomato sauce and Grande mozza-
rella (considered the top American pizza cheese) Best seating
for eatng is at the sheltered outdoor picnic tables $

El Q-Bano Palacio de los Jugos
8650 Biscayne Blvd.
305-758-2550
In case you were wondering if its too good to be true
- it isn't El Q-Bano s owners are indeed related to the
family that operates the original three Palacios de los
Jugos which means no more schlepping way out west
Recommended are moist tamales, tasty sandwiches (espe-
cially the drippingly wonderful pan con lechon), rich flan,
and the fresh tropical juices that justify the aforementioned
excesses For even heartier eaters, there's a changing buffet
of dailyspecials and sides $-$$


Europa Car Wash and Caf6
6075 Biscayne Blvd., 305-754-2357
Giving new meaning to the food term fusion," Europa
serves up sandwiches, salads, car washes, coffee with
croissants, and Chevron with Techron Snacks match
the casual chicness sandwiches like the Renato (pro-
sclutto, hot capplcola, pepper jack cheese, red peppers,
and Romano cheese dressing), an elaborate almond-
garnished Chinese chicken salad, H&H bagels, the world's
best, flown in from NYC And the car cleaning are equally
gentrlfled, especially on Wednesdays, when ladies are
pampered with $10 washes and glasses of sparkling wine
while they walt $

Garden of Eatin'
136 NW 62nd St., 305-754-8050
Housed in a yellow building that's nearly invisible from the
street, the Garden has the comfortable feel of a beach
bar, and generous servings of inexpensive Afro-Caribbean
vegan food Large or small plates, with salad and fried
sweet plantains (plus free soup for eat-in lunchers), are
served for five or seven bucks Also available are snacks
like vegetarian blue corn tacos, desserts like sweet potato
pie, and a breakfast menu featuring organic blueberry
waffles with soy sausage patties $

Gourmet Station
7601 Biscayne Blvd., 305-762-7229
Home-meal replacement, geared to workaholics with
no time to cook, has been popular for years But the
Gourmet Station has outlasted most of the competition
Main reason deceptive healthiness These are meals
that are good for you, yet taste good enough to be bad for
you Favorite items include precision-grilled salmon with
lemon-dill yogurt sauce, and lean turkey meatloaf with
homemade BBQ sauce sin-free comfort food Food is
available a la carte or grouped in multimeal plans custom-
ized for individual diner's nutritional needs $$

Jimmy's East Side Diner
7201 Biscayne Blvd., 305-754-3692
Open for more than 30 years, Jimmys respects the most impor-
tantAmerican diner tradition Breakfast at any hour Admittedly
the place closes at 4 00 p m, but still There are blueberry hot
cakes and pecan waffles, eggs anystyle, including omelets
and open-face frittatas, and a full range of sides biscuits and
sausage gravy, grits, hash, hash browns, even hot oatmeal Also
available are traditional diner entrees (meat loaf, roast turkey,
liver and onions), plus burgers, salad platters, and homemade
chicken soup $-$$

Kingdom
6708 Biscayne Blvd., 305-757-0074
This indoor/outdoor sports bar serves low-priced but high-
quality steaks, plus more typical bar food that's actually
far from the usual processed stuff Philly cheese steak
sandwiches, big enough for two, are made from hand-
sliced rib eye, sides include fries and beer-battered onion
rings, but also lightly lemony sauteed spinach And the
burgers rule, particularly the Doomsday, a cheese/bacon/
mushroom-topped two-pound monster that turns dinner
into a competitive sport No hard liquor, but the beer list
makes up for it $$

Luna Caf6
4770 Biscayne Blvd., 305-573-5862
www.lunacafemidtown.com
The ground floor of the Wachovia Bank building may not seem
a particularly evocative locale for an Italian eatery but once


inside, the charming decor and the staffs ebullient welcome
indeed are reminiscent of a cafe in Italy The kitchen's outstand-
ing feature is a brick oven, which turns out designer pizzas and
crisp-skinned roast chickens Otherwise the menu holds few
surprises except the prices, unusually low for such a stylish
place No dish exceeds $22 $$-$$$

Magnum Lounge
709 NE 79th St., 305-757-3368
Its a restaurant Its a lounge But its decidedly not a typical
Miami restolounge, or like anything else in Miami Forbidding
from the outside, on the inside its like a timetripto a cabaret
in pre-WWll Berlin bordello-red decor, romanticallydim light-
ing, show-tune live piano bar entertainment and to match the
ambiance, elegantly updated retro food served with style and
a smile For those feeling flush, home-style fried chicken is just
like mom used to make n her wildest dreams $$$

Metro Organic Bistro
7010 Biscayne Blvd., 305-751-8756
Big changes have come to Karma the car wash, the first
being a separate new name for the revamped restaurant
Metro Organic Bistro, an all-organic fine-dining restaurant
where simple preparations reveal and enhance natural
flavors An entirely new menu places emphasis on grilled
organic meat and fish dishes Try the steak frites- organic,
grass-fed skirt steak with organic chimichurrl and fresh-cut
fries Vegetarians will love the organic portabella foccacla
Dine either inside the architect-designed restaurant or out-
doors on the patio Beer and wine $-$$$

Michy's
6927 Biscayne Blvd., 305-759-2001
Don't even ask why Michele Bernstein, with a top-chef
resume, not to mention regular Food Network appear-
ances, opened a homey restaurant in an emerging but
far from fully gentrlfled neighborhood Just be glad she
did, as you dine on white almond gazpacho or impossibly
creamy ham and blue cheese croquetas Though most
full entrees also come in half-size portions (at almost
halved prices), the tab can add up fast The star herself is
usually in the kitchen Parking in the rear off 69th Street
$$$-$$$$

Moonchine
7100 Biscayne Blvd., 305-759-3999
Lke its Brickell-area sibling Indochine, this friendlyAsian bistro
serves fare from three nations Japan, Thailand, and Vietnam
Menus are also similar, split between traditional dishes like pad
Thai and East/West fusion creations like the Vampire sushi roll
(shrimp tempura, tomato, cilantro, roasted garlic) But it also
carves out its own identity with original creatons, includingyel-
low curry-spiced fried rice Nearly everything is low in sodium,
fat and calories A large rear pato is invitingfor dining and
entertainment $$-$$$

Moshi Moshi
7232 Biscayne Blvd.
786-220-9404
This offspring of South Beach old-timer Moshl Moshl is
a cross between a sushi bar and an izakaya (Japanese
tapas bar) Even more striking than the hip decor is the
food's unusually upscale quality Sushi ranges from
pristine individual nigirl to over-the-top maki rolls Tapas
are intriguing, like arablki sausage, a sweet-savory pork
fingerling frank, rarely found in restaurants even in Japan,
they're popular Japanese home-cooking items And rice-
based plates like Japanese curry (richer/sweeter than
Indian types) satisfy even the biggest appetites $-$$$


News Lounge
5582 NE 4th Ct.
305-758-9932; www.the55thststation.com
Mark Soyka's new News is, as its name suggests, more a
friendly neighborhood hangout and watering hole than a full-
fledged eatery Nevertheless the menu of light bites is along
with other lures like an inviting outdoor patio and rest rooms
that resemble eclectic art galleries part of the reason visitors
stayfor hours Especially recommended are fat mini-burgers
with chipotle ketchup, a brie, turkey, and mango chutney
sandwich on crusty baguette, and what many feel is the original
cafe's Greatest Hit creamy hummus with warm pita $

Red Light
7700 Biscayne Blvd., 305-757-7773
From the rustic al fresco deck of chef Krs Wessel's intention-
ally downwardly mobile retro-cool riverfront restaurant, you can
enjoy regional wildlife like manatees while enjoying eclectic
regional dishes that range from cutting-edge (sour-orangeman-
nated, sous-videcooked Florida lobster with sweet corn sauce)
to comfort (crispy-breaded Old South fried green tomatoes)
Not surprisingly the chef-driven menu is limited, but several
signature specialties, if available, are notto be missed BBQ
shrimp in a tangy Worcestershire and cayennesplked butter/
wine sauce, irresistible mini conch fritters, and homemade ice
cream $$-$$$

Royal Bavarian Schnitzel Haus
1085 NE 79th St., 305-754-8002
With Christmas lights perpetually twinkling and party noises
emanating from a new outdoor blergarten, this German
restaurant is owner Alex Richter's one-man gentrification
project, transforming a formerly uninviting stretch of 79th
Street one pils at a time The fare includes housemade
sausages (mild veal bratwurst, hearty mixed beef/pork
bauernwurst, spicy garlicwurst) with homemade mustard
and catsup, savory yet near-greaseless potato pancakes,
and, naturally, schnitzels, a choice of delicate pounded pork,
chicken, or veal patties served with a half-dozen different
sauces $$-$$$

Soyka
5556 NE 4th Court
305-759-3117; www.soykarestaurant.com
This expansive, contemporary hangout was often credited
with almost single-handedly sparking the revitalization of
the Biscayne Corridor's Upper Eastside Soyka remains
a solid neighborhood restaurant that is a perfect fit for
its area Comfortably priced yuppie comfort food like
meatloaf with mashed potatoes, crab cakes with spicy-
sweet slaw, a wild mushroom/smoked mozzarella pizza,
or a Cobb salad may not be revolutionary fare, but Soyka
continues to thrive while more ambitious, nationally pub-
licized restaurants have come and gone Take-out orders
and breakfast are now available $$-$$$

Sushi Siam
5582 NE 4th Ct., 305-751-7818
On the menu of sushi-bar specialties plus a small selection of
Thai and Japanese cooked dishes, there are a few surprises,
such as a unique lobster maki that's admittedly huge in price
($25 95), but also in size six ounces of crisp-fried lobster
chunks, plus asparagus, avocado, lettuce, toblko (flyingfish),
masago (smelt) roes, and special sauces Thai dishes come
with a choice of more than a dozen sauces, ranging from tradi-
tional red or green curries to the inventive, such as an uncon-
ventonal honeysauce $$$

Continued on page 51


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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com August 2009


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009








DINING GUIDE


Restaurant Listings
Continued from page 50

UVA 69
6900 Biscayne Blvd.
305-754-9022; www.uva-69.com
Owned and operated by brothers Michael and Sinuhe Vega,
this casual outdoor/indoor Euro-cafe and lounge has helped
to transform the Boulevard into a hip place to hang out Lunch
includes a variety of salads and elegant sandwiches like La
Minuta (beer-battered mahi-mahl with cilantro aiol and cara-
melized onions on housemade foccacia) Dinner features a
range of small plates (poached figs with Gorgonzola cheese and
honey balsamic drizzle) and full entrees like sake-marinated
salmon with boniato mash and Ponzu butter sauce, and crispy
spinach $$-$$$

Ver-Daddys Taco Shop
7501 Biscayne Blvd.;305-303-9755
At this soulful taco shop, the menu descriptions are in
common English ("cinnamon puffs" drizzled with honey
and lime, not bunuelos") But taco fillings range from
ground beef and shredded chicken to more unusual pork
in chill verde or Baja battered fish (authentically gar-
nished with Mexican crema and cilantro-spiked cabbage)
And all offerings can be loaded with other garnishes from
the kitchen (refried beans, cheese, crema) or less perish-
able offerings from a salsa bar For the heath-minded,
oils are nonhydrogenated, and sauces/seasonings are all
housemade and free of preservatives $

Wine 69
6909 Biscayne Blvd.
305-759-0122
You might think this isjust a wine shop, but its actually about
wine, food, and art and how they work together Wines are
available retail (discounted 35-50 percent for in-house drink-
ers), with 40 sold bythe glass Food, designed for pairing
includes a $25 three-course dinner The menu is mostly light
bites with intriguingly inventive touches a seared Cajun tuna
salad with wasabi sauce, crab cakes with Asian srlracha chill
sauce The art involves revolving exhibits, plus an art lecture
series featuring wines picked by owner Ben Neji $$


Yiya's Gourmet Cuban Bakery
646 NE 79th St., 305-754-3337
A true community jewel, this bakery is also a most welcoming
cafe, serving lunch specials from chef Delsa Bernardo (who
co-owns the place with attorney Abbie Cuellar) that are home-
made right down to the herbs grown on the bakerys window
sills Bernardos pan con lechon sandwiches and flaky-crusted
Cuban pastries are legend But she also crafts treats not found
at average Cuban bakeries, like pizzas using housemade
Indian naan bread Additionally Bernardo carries unique treats
produced by a few friends candies, cupcakes, and exotically
flavored flans $



Bocados Ricos
1880 79th St. Causeway; 305-864-4889
Tucked into a mall best known for its Happy Stork Lounge, this
little luncheonette services big appetites Along with the usual
grilled churrascos, there bandeja paisa, Colombia's sampler
platter of grilled steak, sausage, chicharron, fried egg, avocado,
plantains, rice, and beans Don't miss marginally daintier dishes
like sopa de costilla, if this rich shortrib bowl is among the daily
homemade soups Arepas include our favorite corn cake the
hefty Aura, stuffed with chorizo, chicharron, came desmechada
(shredded flank steak), plantains, rice, beans, and cheese $-$$

Edy's Chicken & Steak
1624 79th St. Causeway
305-864-9958
What differentiates Edys from other chicken joints is the sig-
nature Peruvian polio a la brasa, char-broiled in a wood-fired
rotsserle The rotation makes the bird self-baste, keeping even
the white meatjuicy under its crispy nearly fat-free skin Spicing
is also superior Owner Edy Dernovsek's dozen-ingredient marn-
nade recipe came from a visit to Peru, but has been tweaked
with spices from her hometown Chiang Mai, Thailand The
result is subtly mouth-warming heat absent from average chain
chickens $-$$

Japanese Market and Sushi Deli
1412 79th St. Causeway; 305-861-0143
Inside a small market that is widely considered Miami's


premier source of Japanese foodstuffs, the Sushi Deli"
restaurant component is nothing more than a lunch coun-
ter But chef Michio Kushi serves up some sushi found
nowhere else in town Example traditional Osaka-style
sushi layers of rice, seasoned seaweed, and marinated
fresh mackerel, pressed into a square box, then cut into
lovely one-bite sandwich squares While raw fish is always
impeccable here, some unusual vegetarian sushi cre-
ations also tempt, as do daily entrees $

Mario the Baker
1700 79th St. Causeway
305-867-7882
(See North Miami listing)

Oggi Caffe
1666 79th St. Causeway
305-866-1238
www.oggicaffe.com
This cozy, romantic spot started back in 1989 as a pasta
factory (supplying numerous high-profile restaurants) as well
as a neighborhood eatery And the wide range of budget-
friendly, homemade pastas, made daily, remains the main
draw for its large and loyal clientele Choices range from
homey, meaty lasagna to luxuriant crab ravioli with creamy
lobster sauce, with occasional forays into creative exotica
such as seaweed spaghettini, with sea scallops, shitakes,
and fresh tomatoes $$-$$$

Shuckers Bar & Grill
1819 79th St. Causeway
305-866-1570
Cheap eats and a million-dollar view" is the sound bite
manager Philip Conklin uses to describe this outdoor beach
bar, hidden in back of a bayfront motel Thejoint dates from
South Beach's late 1980s revival, but the kickoff-your-shoes
vibe couldn't be farther from SoBe glitz The food ranges from
classic bar favorites (char-grilled wings, conch fritters, raw or
steamed shellfish) to full dinners featuring steak, homemade
pasta, or fresh, not frozen, fish $-$$

Sushi Siam
1524 NE 79th St. Causeway, 305-864-7638
(See Miami / Upper Eastside listing)


Ariston
940 71st St., 305-864-9848
Arlston's classical Greek cuisine is based on recipes of
co-owner Thanasis Barlos's mom Noni and executed by
CIA-trained chef Alexia Apostolidis Concentrate on the
menu's authentic treats lke the lightest, most savory
whipped tarama (caviar spread) west of Athens, ultra-rich
tzatzlki (Greek yogurt with cukes, garlic, and olive oil),
bracing avgolemono (egg-thickened chicken/lemon soup),
char-grilled sardines with greens and citrus dressing, or
an inspired eggplant/ground beef moussaka, bound here
with an almost sinfully custardy bechamel $$-$$$

Caf6 Prima Pasta
414 71st St., 305-867-0106, www.primapasta.com
Opened in 1993 with 28 seats, this family-run landmark
has now taken over the block, with an outdoor terrace
and multi-roomed indoor space whose walls are full of
photos of their clientele, including national and local
celebs Particularly popular are homemade pastas,
sauced with Argentine-Italian indulgence rather than
Italian simplicity crabmeat ravioletti in lobster cream
sauce, black squid ink linguini heaped with seafood
Though romantic enough for dates, the place is quite kid-
friendly- and on the terrace, they'll even feed Fido $$$

Tamarind Thai
946 Normandy Dr.
305-861-6222
www.tamarindthai.us
When an eatery's executive chef is best-selling Thai
cookbook author Vatcharin Bhumichitr, you'd expect
major media hype, fancy South Beach prices, and a fancy
SoBe address Instead Bhumichitr joined forces with Day
Longsomboon (an old Thai school pal who'd moved to
Miami) at this unpretentious, authentic (no sushi) neigh-
borhood place Some standout dishes here are featured
in the chef's latest tome, but with Tamarind's very afford-
able prices, you might as well let the man's impeccably
trained kitchen staff do the work for you $$-$$$

Continued on page 52


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August 2009 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com








DINING GUIDE


Restaurant Listings
Continued from page 51





Iron Sushi
9432 NE 2nd Ave., 305-754-0311
www.ironsushi.com
With three Biscayne Corridor outlets (plus several branch-
es elsewhere in town), this mostly take-out mini chain is
fast becoming the Sushi Joint That Ate Miami And why do
Miamlans eat here? Not ambiance There isn't any But
when friends from the Pacific Northwest, where foodies
know their fish, tout the seafood's freshness, we listen
There are some surprisingly imaginative makis, like the
Maharaja, featuring fried shrimp and drizzles of curry
mayo And where else will you find a stacked sushi (five
assorted makis) birthday cake? $-$$

C6te Gourmet
9999 NE 2nd Ave., #112
305-754-9012
If only every Miami neighborhood could have a neighbor-
hood restaurant like this low-priced little French jewel The
menu is mostly simple stuff breakfast croissants, crepe,
soups, sandwiches, salads, sweets, and a few more sub-
stantial specials like a Tunisian-style brlk (buttery phyllo
pastry stuffed with tuna, onions, potatoes, and tomatoes)
with a mesclun side salad But everything is homemade,
including all breads, and prepared with impeccable ingre-
dients, classic French technique, and meticulous atten-
tion to detail, down to the stylish plaid ribbons that hold
together the cafe's baguette sandwiches $-$$




Los Antojos
11099 Biscayne Blvd.
305-892-1411
If its Sunday, it must be sancocho de gallina, Colombia's
national dish If its Saturday it must be ajiaco Both are thick
chicken soups, full meals in a bowl For Colombian-cuisine
novices, a bandeja paisa (sampler including rice, beans, came
asada, chicharron, eggs, sauteed sweet plantains, and an
arepa corn cake) is available every day, as are antojitos little
whims," smaller snacks like chorizo con arepa (a corn cake with
Colombian sausage) And for noncarnivores there are several
heftyseafood platters, made to order $$

Bagels & Co.
11064 Biscayne Blvd., 305-892-2435
While this place is often referred to as Guns & Bagels, one can't
actually buy a gun here The nickname refers to its location next
to a firearms shop But there's a lot of other stuff aside from
bagels here, including a full range of sandwiches and wraps
Breakfast time is busy time, with banana-walnut pancakes
especially popular But whats mostimportant is that this is
one of the area's few sources of the real, New York-style water
bagel crunchy outside, challengingly chewy inside $


Bamboche
13408 Biscayne Blvd.
305-947-6339
Buried in a strip mall perpendicular to the Boulevard,
Bamboche is worth the hunt on one of those head-splitting

Ik to .


Saturday, for a Haitian specialty not found in many area res-
taurants bouillon tet cabrlt, a soup packed with greens (like
spinach, cabbage, cress, string beans) and root veggies that
is reputed to be a miraculous hangover remedy Along with
bouillon, weekend specials include more unusual dishes like
frltay, fried street snacks Haitian standards (grlot, tassot) are
available daily, as are fresh-squeezed juices, lattes, and almost
two dozen desserts $

Bar-B-Que Beach Sports Bar & Grill
12599 Biscayne Blvd.
305-895-3141
On Friday nights, there's karaoke, though from the decor -
mixing Wild West rusticity with Key West flip-flops dangling
from the ceiling its hard to know whether to brush up your
Jimmy Buffett medley or Tumbling Tumbleweeds" There
are specials the other six days of the week as well, but don't
forget the biggest draw the barbecue, honest stuff that has
been low-temperature smoked for 12 to 14 hours till tender
yet resilient Menu winners succulent sliced brisket and
delightfully julcy chicken $$

Bulldog Barbecue
15400 Biscayne Blvd., 305-940-9655
www.bulldog-bbq.com
The BBQ master at this small, rustic room is pugnacious Top
Chef contender Howle Kelnberg, whose indoor electric smoker
turns out mild-tastng cue that ranges from the expected pulled
pork, ribs, brisket and chicken to hot-smoked salmon and
veggie plates There are also create comfort food starters
like BBQ chicken flatbread, salads, and sweets Sides include
refreshingslaw, beans studded with burnt ends" (the most
intensely flavored outer barbecue chunks), and sweet potato or
chipotle-spiced fries The cost is comparatively high, but such is
the price of fame $$-$$$

Burritos Grill Caf6
11717 Biscayne Blvd., 305-891-1041
www.burritosgrillcafe
Originally a friendly little 125th Street hole-in-the-wall
that garnered raves for its limited menu of terrifically
tasty treats, Marlo and Karma Manzanero's cafe is
now in more sizable and atmospheric quarters But
the friendly, family-run (and kid-friendly) ambiance
remains, as do the authentic Yucatan-style specialties
Standouts include poc-chuc, a marinated pork loin,
tacos al pastor, stuffed with subtly smoky steak, onion,
cilantro, and pineapple, sinful deep-fried tacos dora-
dos, and signature burritos, including the Maya, filled
with juicy cochinlta plbil, refried beans, and pickled
onions $$

Canton Caf6
12749 Biscayne Blvd., 305-892-2882
Easily overlooked, this strip-mall spot serves mostly
Cantonese-based dishes However, there are also about two
dozen spicier, Szechuan-style standards like kung po shrimp,
ma po tofu, and General Tso's chicken And there are a
few imaginative new items, like the intriguingly christened
Shrimp Lost in the Forest," Singapore curried rice noodles,
crispy shrimp with honey-glazed walnuts, and Mongolian
beef (with raw chills and fresh Oriental basil) Delivery is
available for both lunch and dinner $$

Captain Jim's Seafood
12950 W. Dixie Hwy.
305-892-2812
This market/restaurant was garnering critical acclaim
even when eat-in dining was confined to a few Formica


tables in front of the fish counter, owing to the freshness
of its seafood, much of it from Capt Jim Hanson's own
fishing boats, which supply many top restaurants Now
there's a casual but pleasantly nautical side dining room
with booths Whether it's garlicky scampi, smoked-fish
dip, grilled yellowtail or hog or mutton snapper, perfectly
tenderized cracked conch or conch fritters, everything is
deftly prepared and bargain-priced $$

Casa Mia Trattoria
1950 NE 123rd St.
305-899-2770
Tucked away, off to the side on the approach to
the Broad Causeway and the beaches, this charm-
ing indoor/outdoor trattoria seems to attract mostly
neighborhood regulars But even newcomers feel like
regulars after a few minutes, thanks to the staff's
Italian ebullience Menu offerings are mostly classic
comfort foods with some contemporary items as well
Housemade pastas are good enough that low-carb diet-
ers should take a break, especially for the tender gnoc-
chi with pesto or better yet, delicate fagottinl beg-
gar's purses" stuffed with pears and cheese $$

Ch6en-huyae
15400 Biscayne Blvd., 305-956-2808
Diners can get some Tex-Mex dishes here, if they must But
the specialty is Mayan-rooted Yucatan cuisine So why blow
bucks on burritos when one can sample Caribbean Mexico's
most typical dish cochinlta plbil? Cheen's authentically
succulent version of the pickle-onion-topped marinated
pork dish is earthily aromatic from achiote, tangy from bit-
ter oranges, and meltingly tender from slow cooking in a
banana leaf wrap To accompany, try a lime/soy/chill-spiced
mlchelada, also authentically Mexican, and possibly the best
thing that ever happened to dark beer $$-$$$

Chef Creole
13105 W. Dixie Hwy., 305-893-4246
(See Miami listing)

D.J.'s Diner
12210 Biscayne Blvd., 305-893-5250
Located in a Best Western motel, this place, run by a
Chinese-American family, serves mostly basic American
diner fare burgers, sandwiches, about a dozen dinner
entrees, fresh-baked apple pie, and, oddly, a whole section
of Caesar salad variations But its also a secret source for
Chinese food, mostly chow mien/chop suey-type dishes, but
also a few dishes such as eggplant with garlic sauce and ma
po tofu that are a step up in authenticity $-$$

Here Comes the Sun
2188 NE 123rd St, 305-893-5711
At this friendly natural foods establishment, one of Miami's
first, there's a full stock of vitamins and nutritional supple-
ments But the place's hearty soups, large variety of entrees
(including fresh fish and chicken as well as vegetarian
selections), lighter bites like miso burgers with secret sun
sauce" (which would probably make old sneakers taste
good), and daily specials are a tastier way to get healthy An
under-ten-buck early-bird dinner is popular with the former
long-hair, now blue-hair, crowd Frozen yogurt, fresh juices,
and smoothies complete the menu $-$$

Le Griot de Madame John
975 NE 125th St., 305-892-9333
When Madame moved her base of operations from her Little
Halt home to a real restaurant (though a very informal one,


and still mostly take-out), she began offering numerous tradi-
tional Haitian dishes, includingjerked beef or goat tassot and
an impressive poisson gros sel (a whole fish rubbed with salt
before poaching with various vegges and spices) But the dish
that still packs the place is the grlot marinated pork chunks
simmered and then fried til they re moistly tender inside, crisp
and intensely flavored outside $

Little Havana
12727 Biscayne Blvd.,305-899-9069
www.littlehavanarestaurant.com
In addition to white-tablecoth ambiance, this place features
live Latin entertainment and dancing, making it a good
choice when diners want a night out, notjust a meal Its
also a good choice for diners who don't speak Spanish, but
don't worry about authenticity Classic Cuban home-style
dishes like mojo-marinated lechon asado, topped with
onions, and juicy ropa vieja are translated on the menu, not
the plate, and fancier creations like pork filet in tangy tama-
rind sauce seem universal crowd-pleasers $$$

Maleewan Thai & Sushi
2224 NE 123rd St.
305-895-0393
Redecorated (tasteful bamboo-matted walls, silk flowers) since
the days many days this space was occupied by the kosher
sushi spot Tani Guchi's Place, Maleewan is now a cozy, neigh-
borly nook at which to enjoy all the standard Japanese and Thai
selections Cooked sushi is the strong suit here, particularly the
signature mammoth-size Maleewan roll, given zing by pickled
Japanese squash and savor bya crispy yellowtail tempura top-
ping If you re craving more creative fare, check out the hand-
written specials board on your way in $$

Mama Jennie's
11720 NE 2nd Ave.
305-757-3627
For more than 35 years this beloved red-saucejoint has been
drawing students and other starvation-budget diners with pro-
digous portions of lasagna, spaghetti and meatballs (the latter
savory yet light-textured), veal marsala topped with a mountain
of mushrooms, and other Italian-American belly-busters All
pasta or meat entrees come with oil-drenched garlic rolls and
either soup (hearty minestrone) or a salad (mixed greens, toma-
toes, cukes, brined olives, and pickled peppers) that's a dinner
in itself Rustc roadhouse ambiance, notably the red leather-
ette booths, add to Mama's charm $-$$

Mario the Baker
250 NE 25th St.
305-891-7641
www.mariothebakerpizza.com
At this North Miami institution (opened in 1969) food is
Italian-American, not Italian-Italian spaghetti and meatballs,
lasagna, eggplant parmigiana, and hot or cold subs No
imported buffala, arugula, or other chichi stuff on the New
York-style medium-thin-crusted pizzas, the top topping
here is the savory housemade sausage And no one leaves
without garlic rolls, awash in warm parsley oil and smashed
garlic New branches are now open in Miami's Midtown
neighborhood and in North Bay Village $

North One 10
11052 Biscayne Blvd., 305-893-4211
www.northonel0.com
After helming several NYC restaurants for China Grill
Management, the homegrown married team of chef

Continued on page 53


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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009









DINING GUIDE


Restaurant Listings
Continued from page 52

Dewey and sommelier Dale LoSasso returned to do
their own thing in their own neighborhood The menu is
"creative comfort food" a shrimp waffle with basil but-
ter, "steak and eggs" (a grilled NY strip with truffled goat
cheese frittata and herb demiglace), a stone crab hot
dog the chef invented for a Super Bowl party The award-
winning wine list inspires playfully themed pairing events
Prices are reasonable and parking is free $$$-$$$$

Sara's
2214 NE 123rd St., 305-891-3312
www.saraskosherpizza.com
While this mainly vegetarian kosher place is best known
for its pizza (New York-style medium crust or thick-crusted
Sicilian, topped with veggies and/or "meat buster" imita-
tion meats), it's also offers a full range of breakfast/
lunch/dinner vegetarian cuisine of all nations, with many
dairy and seafood items too Admittedly the cutesie
names of many items baygels, bergerrbite, Cezarrrr
salad, hammm, meat-a-ball, schmopperrr may cause
queasiness But the schmopperrr itself is one helluva
high-octane veggie burger $-$$

Steve's Pizza
12101 Biscayne Blvd., 305-891-0202
At the end of a debauched night of excess, some paper-
thin designer pizza with wisps of smoked salmon (or
similar fluff) doesn't do the trick Open till 3 00 or 4 00
a m, Steve's has, since 1974, been serving the kind of
comforting, retro pizzas people crave at that hour As in
Brooklyn, tomato sauce is sweet, with strong oregano
flavor Mozzarella is applied with abandon Toppings are
stuff that give strength pepperoni, sausage, meatballs,
onions, and peppers $

Tokyo Bowl
12295 Biscayne Blvd.
305892-9400
This fast-food drive-thru (unexpectedly serene inside)
is named for its feature item, big budget-priced bowls


of rice or noodles topped with cooked Japanese-style
items like teriyaki fish (fresh fish sauteed with veg-
etables), curried chicken and veggies, spicy shrimp, or
gyoza dumplings in tangy sauce There's also an all-
you-can-eat deal sushi (individual nigirl or maki rolls)
plus tempura, teriyaki, and other cooked items for $14,
three bucks more for sashimi instead of sushi $-$$

Venezia Pizza and Caf6
13452 Biscayne Blvd.
305-940-1808
No frozen pizza crusts or watery mozzarella here No
imported designer ingredients either The pies are New
York-style, but the dough is made fresh daily, and the
cheese is Grande (from Wisconsin, considered America's
finest pizza topper) Also on the menu are Italian-
American pastas, a large selection of hot an cold subs,
simple salads, and a few new protein adds grilled
chicken breast, fried fish, or a steak $-$$

Wong's Chinese Restaurant
12420 Biscayne Blvd.
305-891-4313
The menu reads like a textbook on how to please everyone,
with food ranging from traditional Chinese to Chinese-
American tojust plain American Appetizers include honey
garlic chicken wings or Buffalo wings A crab-claw starter
comes with choice of pork fried rice or French fries Seafood
lovers can get shrimp chop suey, or salty pepper shrimp
(authentically shell-on) And New Yorkers will find a number
of dishes that are mainstays of Manhattan Szechuan menus
but not common in Miami cold sesame noodles, Hunan
chicken, twice-cooked pork $$


still a traditional Philly Drippin good burgers, too And
unlike MacChain addicts, patrons here can order a cold
beer with the good grease $-$$




Bamboo Garden
1232 NE 163rd St.
305-945-1722
Big enough for a banquet (up to 300 guests), this vet-
eran is many diners' favorite on the 163rd/167th Street
"Chinatown" strip because of its superior decor But the
menu also offers well-prepared, authentic dishes like
peppery black bean clams, sauteed mustard greens,
and steamed whole fish with ginger and scallions, plus
Chinese-American egg foo young Default spicing is mild
even in Szechuan dishes marked with red-chill icons, but
don't worry, realizing some like it hot, the chefs will cus-
tomize spiciness to heroic heat levels upon request $$

Blue Marlin Fish House
2500 NE 163rd St.
305-957-8822
Located inside Oleta River State Park, this casual outdoor
eatery is a rare surprise for nature lovers The featured item
is still the house-smoked fish this historic venue began
producing in 1938, available in three varieties salmon, mahl
mahl, and the signature blue marlin But the smokehouse
now also turns out ribs and delectable brisket Other new
additions include weekend fish fries Entry is directly from
163rd Street, not through the main park entrance No
admission fee $


Woody's Famous Steak Sandwich China Restaurant
13105 Biscayne Blvd. 178 NE 167th St.
305-891-1451 305-947-6549
The griddle has been fired up since 1954 at this When you have a yen for theAmericanized Chinesefusion
indie fast-food joint, and new owners have done little dishes you grew up with, all the purist regional Chinese cuisine
to change the time-tested formula except to stretch in the world won't scratch the Itch So the menu here, contain-
operating hours into the night and expand its classic ing every authentically inauthentic ChineseAmerican classic
menu to include a few health-conscious touches like you could name, isjustthe ticketwhen nostalgia strikes from
Caesar salad, plus a note proclaiming their oils are free simple egg rolls to pressed almond duck (majorly breaded
of trans fats Otherwise the famous steak sandwich is boneless chunks, with comfortinglythick gravy) $-$$


Chipotle Mexican Grill
14776 Biscayne Blvd.
305-947-2779, www.chipotle.com
Proving that national fast-food chains don't have to be bad
for either diners or the environment, Chipotle serves what
the company calls "food with integrity" The fare is simple,
basically tacos and big burritos soft flour or crisp corn torti-
llas stuffed with chipotle-marinated steak or chicken chunks,
bolder shredded beef barbacoa, or herb-scented pork car-
nitas But these bites contain no evil ingredients (transfats,
artificial color/flavor, antibiotics, growth hormones) And the
food, while not the authentic Mex street stuff dreams are
made of, is darned tasty, too $

Christine's Roti Shop
16721 NE 6th Ave., 305-770-0434
Wraps are for wimps At this small shop run by Christine
Gouvela, originally from British Guyana, the wrapper is
a far more substantial and tasty roti, a Caribbean mega-
crepe made from chickpea flour Most popular filling for
the flatbread is probably jerk chicken, bone-in pieces in a
spiced stew of potatoes, cabbage, carrots, onions, and more
chickpeas But there are about a dozen other curries from
which to choose Take-out packages of plain roti are also
available, they transform myriad leftovers into tasty, portable
lunches $

El Gran Inka
3155 NE 163rd St.
305-940-4910
www.graninka.com
Though diners at this upscale Peruvian eatery will find
ceviches, a hefty fried-seafood jalea, and Peru's other
expected traditional specialties, all presented far more
elegantly than most in town, the contemporary Peruvian
fusion creations are unique Especially recommended are
two dishes adapted from recipes by Peru's influential nik-
kei (Japanese/Creole) chef Rosita Yimura an exquisite,
delicately sauced tiradito de corvina, and for those with
no fear of cholesterol, pulpo de oliva (octopus topped with
rich olive sauce) $$$-$$$$


Continued on page 54


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009









DINING GUIDE


Restaurant Listings
Continued from page 53

Hanna's Gourmet Diner
13951 Biscayne Blvd.
305-947-2255
When Sla and Nicole Hemmatl bought the Gourmet Diner
from retiring original owner Jean-Pierre Lejeune in the late
1990s, they added Hanna's" to the name, but changed
little else about this retro-looking French/American diner,
a north Mlami-Dade institution since 1983 Customers
can get a cheeseburger or garlicky escargots, meatloaf
in tomato sauce or boeuf bourguignon in red wine sauce,
iceberg lettuce and tomatoes, or a mushroom and squid
salad with garlic dressing For oysters Rockefeller/tuna-
melt couples from Venus and Mars, it remains the ideal
dinner date destination $$-$$$

Hiro Japanese Restaurant
3007 NE 163rd St., 305-948-3687
One of Miami's first sushi restaurants, Hiro retains an
amusing retro-glam feel, an extensive menu of both sushi
and cooked Japanese food, and late hours that make it
a perennially popular after-hours snack stop The sushi
menu has few surprises, but quality is reliable Most
exceptional are the nicely priced yakitori skewers of suc-
culently soy-glazed and grilled meat, fish, and vegetables,
the unusually large variety available of the last makes this
place a good choice for vegetarians $$

Hiro's Sushi Express
17048 W. Dixie Hwy., 305-949-0776
Tiny, true, but there's more than just sushi at this mostly
take-out spin-off of the pioneering Hiro Makis are the main-
stay (standard stuff like California rolls, more complex cre-
ations like multi-veg futomaki, and a few unexpected treats
like a spicy Crunch & Caliente makl), available a la carte or
in value-priced individual and party combo platters But there
are also bento boxes featuring tempura, yakitori skewers,
teriyaki, stir-fried veggies, and udon noodles Another branch
is now open in Miami's Upper Eastside $

Hiro's Yakko-San
17040 W. Dixie Hwy., 305-947-0064
After sushi chefs close up their own restaurants for the
night, many come here for a rare taste of Japanese home
cooking, served in grazing portions Try glistening-fresh
strips of raw tuna can be had in maguro nuta mixed
with scallions and dressed with habit-forming honey-miso
mustard sauce Other favorites include goma ae (wilted
spinach, chilled and dressed in sesame sauce), garlic
stem and beef (mild young shoots flash-fried with tender
steak bits), or perhaps just-caught grouper with hot/
sweet/tangy chili sauce Open till around 3 00 a m $$

Heelsha
1550 NE 164th St., 305-919-8393
www.heelsha.com
If unusual Bangladeshl dishes like fiery pumpkin patey (cooked
with onion, green pepper, and pickled mango) or Heelsha curry
(succulently spiced hilsa, Bangladesh's sweet-fleshed national
fish) seem familiar, its because chef/owner Bithl Begum and
her husband Tipu Raman once served such fare atthe critcally
acclaimed Renaisa Their menu's mix-and-match opton allows
diners to pair their choice of meat, poultry, fish, or vegetable
with more than a dozen regional sauces, from familiar Indian
styles to exotica like satkara, flavored with a Bangladeshl citrus
reminiscent of sour orange $$-$$$


Iron Sushi
16350 W. Dixie Hwy.
305-945-2244
(See Miami Shores listing ?

Jerusalem Market and Deli
16275 Biscayne Blvd.
305-948-9080
Specialties like shawarma, spinach pies, kebabs, hummus, and
klbbeh (a savory mix of ground lamb and bulgur) are native to
many Middle East countries, but when a Lebanese chef/owner,
like this eaters Sam Elzoor, is at the helm, you can expect
extraordinary refinement There are elaborate daily specials
here, like lemon chicken or stuffed cabbage with a variety of
sides, but even a common falafel sandwich is special when the
plta is also stuffed with housemade cabbage and onion salads,
plus unusually rich and tarttahina $-$$

Kabobji
3055 NE 163rd St., 305-3548484
www.EatKabobji.com
This place makes a very good tahini sauce In factthat alone is
reason enough to visit We prefer ours with this bright cheery
eaterys delightfully oniony falafel or a veg-garnished wrap of
thin-sliced marinated beef schwarma They also do a beautifully
spiced, and reassuringly fresh-tasting, raw klbbl naye (Middle
Eastern steak tartare) Its hard to resist putting together a
grazing meal of starters and wraps, but there's also a roster of
full entrees (with soup or salad plus starch), including tempting
vegetarian and seafood meals for noncarnivores $$

Kebab Indian Restaurant
514 NE 167th St.
305-940-6309
Since the 1980s this restaurant located in an unatmospheric
mini strip mall but surprisingly romantic inside (especially if you
grab one of the exotically draped booths) has been a popular
destnaton for reasonably priced north Indian fare Kormas are
properly soothing and vindaloos are satisfactorily searing, but
the kitchen will adjust seasonings upon request They aim to
please Food arrives unusuallyfastfor an Indian eatery, too $$

King Palace
330 NE 167th St.
305-949-2339
The specialties here are authentic Chinatown-style barbecue
(whole ducks, roast pork strips, and more, displayed in a glass
case by the door), and fresh seafood dishes, the best made
with the live fish swimming in two tanks by the dining room
entrance There's also a better-than-average selection of sea-
sonal Chinese veggies The menu is extensive, but the best
ordering strategy, since the place is usually packed with Asians,
is tosee what looks good on nearby tables, and point $$

Lime Fresh Mexican Grill
14831 Biscayne Blvd., 305-949-8800
(See Midtown / Wynwood / Design District listing)

Laurenzo's Market Caf6
16385 W. Dixie Hwy.
305-945-6381
www.laurenzosmarket.com
It's just a small area between the wines and the fridge
counters no potted palms, and next-to-no service in this
cafeteria-style space But when negotiating this interna-
tional gourmet market's packed shelves and crowds has
depleted your energies, it's a handy place to refuel with
eggplant parmesan and similar Italian-American classics,
housemade from old family recipes Just a few spoonfuls


of Wednesday hearty pasta faglole, one of the daily
soup specials, could keep a person shopping for hours
And now that pizza master Carlo is manning the wood-
fired oven, you can sample the thinnest, crispiest pies
outside Napoli $-$$

Little Saigon
16752 N. Miami Ave.
305-653-3377
This is Miami's oldest traditional Vietnamese restaurant,
but it's still packed most weekend nights So even the
place's biggest negative its hole-in-the-wall atmosphere,
not encouraging of lingering visits becomes a plus since it
ensures fast turnover Chef/owner Lily Tao is typically in the
kitchen, crafting green papaya salad, flavorful beef noodle
pho (served with greens, herbs, and condiments that make
it notjust a soup but a whole ceremony), and many other
Vietnamese classics The menu is humongous $-$$

Mary Ann Bakery
1284 NE 163rd St., 305-945-0333
Don't be unduly alarmed bythe American birthday cakes in
the window Atthis small Chinese bakery the real finds are the
Chinatown-style baked buns and other savory pastries, filled
with roast pork, bean sauce, and curried ground beef Prices
are under a buck, making them an exotc alternative to fast-
food dollar meals Theres one table for eat-in snackers $

The Melting Pot
15700 Biscayne Blvd.
305-947-2228; www.meltingpot.com
For 1950s and 1960s college students, fondue pots were
standard dorm accessories These days, however, branches
of this chain are generally the only places to go for this eating
experience Start with a wine-enriched four-cheese fondue, pro-
ceed to an entree with meat or seafood, plus choice of cooking
potion (herbed wine, bouillon, or oil), finish with fruits and cakes
dipped in melted chocolate Fondue etiquette dictates that
diners who drop a skewer in the pot must kiss all other table
companions, so go with those you love $$$

Oishi Thai
14841 Biscayne Blvd.
305-947-4338
www.oishithai.com
At this stylish Thai/sushi spot, try the menu of specials,
many of which clearly reflect the young chefs fanatical
devotion to fresh fish, as well as the time he spent in
the kitchen of Knob broiled miso-marinated black cod,
rock shrimp tempura with creamy sauce, even Nobu
Matsuhisa's new style sashimi" (slightly surface-seared
by drizzles of hot olive and sesame oil) The specials
menu includes some Thai-inspired creations, too, such as
veal massaman curry, Chilean sea bass curry, and sizzling
filet mignon with basil sauce $$$-$$$$

Panya Thai
520 NE 167th St., 305-945-8566
Unlike authentic Chinese cuisine, there's no shortage of
genuine Thai food in and around Miami But Panya's chef/
owner, a Bangkok native, offers numerous regional and/
or rare dishes not found elsewhere Plus he doesn't auto-
matically curtail the heat or sweetness levels to please
Americans Among the most intriguing moo khem phad wan
(chewy deep-fried seasoned pork strips with fiery tamarind
dip, accompanied by crisp green papaya salad), broad rice
noodles stir-fried with eye-opening chill/garlic sauce and
fresh Thai basil, and chill-topped Diamond Duck in tangy
tamarind sauce $$-$$$


Paquito's
16265 Biscayne Blvd., 305-947-5027
From the outside, this strip-mall Mexican eatery couldn't be
easier to overlook Inside, however, its festvity is impossible
to resist Every inch of wall space seems to be covered with
South of the Border knickknacks And if the kitschy decor alone
doesn't cheer you, the quickly arriving basket of fresh (not
packaged) taco chips, or the mariachi band, or the knockout
margaritas will Food ranges from Tex-Mex burritos and a party-
size fajita platter to authentic Mexican moles and harder-to-find
traditional preparations like albondigas spicy, ultra-savory
meatballs $$-$$$

Pasha's
14871 Biscayne Blvd.
786-923-2323
www.pashas.com
(See Miami Brickell / Downtown listng)

Paul Bakery Caf6
14861 Biscayne Blvd., 305-940-4443
www.paulusa.com
From one rural shop in 1889, the French bakery known simply
as Paul has grown to a worldwide chain, which fortunately
chose to open its first U S outlet in our town One bite of the
crusty peasant loaf, the olivestudded fougasse, or another
of the signature artisan breads transports you right back to
France As authentic as the boulangerle breads are, the patis-
serie items like flan normande are just as evocatve For eat-in
diners, quite continental soups, salads, and sandwiches are
equally and dependably French $$

Pizza Fusion
14815 Biscayne Blvd., 305405-6700
www.pizzafusion.com
Saving the earth one pizza at a time" is the motto at this
franchise of the only pizza chain to require third-party
organic restaurant certification at all locations Their
gluten-free crusts make it mighty friendly to pizza fanatics
with food allergies Starters, salads, desserts, and organic
wines/beers are also served And delivery is available in
hybrid cars, of course Specials unique to this NMB fran-
chise include Sunday-Thursday happy hours, a free Kids
Organic Club class on Saturdays, 10 00-1100 a m, and
varied Monday-Wednesday freebies $-$$

PK Oriental Mart
255 NE 167th St., 305-654-9646
Unlike other Asian markets on this strip between 1-95 and
Biscayne Boulevard, PK has a prepared-food counter,
serving authentic Chinatown barbecue, with appropriate
dipping sauces included Weekends bring the biggest
selection, including barbecued ribs and pa pel duck
(roasted, then deep-fried till extra crisp and nearly free
of subcutaneous fat) Available every day are juicy, soy-
marinated roast chickens, roast pork strips, crispy pork,
and whole roast ducks hanging, beaks and all But no
worries, a counterperson will chop your purchase into
bite-size, beakless pieces $

Roasters & Toasters
18515 NE 18th Ave., 305-830-3354
Attention ex-New Yorkers Is your idea of food porn one of the
Carnegie Dells mile-high pastrami sandwiches? Well, Roasters
will dwarf them Consider the Carnegiestyle monster contain-
ing according to the menu, a full pound of succulent meat
(really 14 pounds, we weighed it), for a mere 15 bucks All the

Continued on page 55


FEEL LIKE
SEAFOOD?
HEAD TO
FISH CORNER
Miami Herald


5555 NE 2nd AVE Miami, FL 305.757.5056


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


August 2009








DINING GUIDE


Restaurant Listings
Continued from page 54

other Jewish deli classics are here too, including perfectly sour
pickles, silky hand-sliced nova or lox, truly red-rare roast beef,
and the cutest two-bite mini-potato pancakes ever eight per
order, served with sour cream and applesauce $$

Sang's Chinese Restaurant
1925 NE 163rd St., 305-947-7076
Sangs has three menus The pink menu is Americanized
Chinese food, from chop sueyto honey garlic chicken The
white menu permits the chef to show off his authentic
Chinese fare salt and pepper prawns, rich beef/turnip
casserole, tender salt-baked chicken, even esoterica like
abalone with sea cucumber The extensive third menu offers
dim sum, served until 4 00 p m A live tank allows seasonal
seafood dishes like lobster with ginger and scallion Recently
installed a Chinese barbecue case, displaying savory items
like crispy pork with crackling attached $$$

Shing Wang Vegetarian, Icee & Tea House
237 NE 167th St., 305-654-4008
www.shingwangrestaurant.com
At this unique Taiwanese eatery, run by a trio of Taipei-
trained female chefs, all seafood, poultry, and meats in the
budget-priced entrees ($6 95) are mock imitations made
from wheat gluten, tofu, and vegetables But don't mock it
till you try the quite beefy pepper steak, or smoking duck,
with slices that mimic the charcuterie item down to convinc-
ing faux fat Other main dishes feature recognizable veggies
or noodles As for the rest of the name icee is shaved ice,
an over-the-top dessert that's a sort of a slurpee sundae,
with toppings that vary from the familiar (fresh fruits) to
the weird (grass jelly sweet corn, kidney beans, rice balls,
chocolate pudding) And the bubble tea is a must-not-miss
Using housemade syrup, the cold, refreshing boba comes in
numerous flavors (mango, taro, even actual tea), all supple-
mented with signature black tapioca balls that, slurped
through large-diameter straws, are a guaranteed giggle $

Siam Square
54 NE 167th St., 305-944-9697
Open until 100 am every day exceptSunday (when is closes
at midnight), this relatively new addition to North Miami Beach's
Chinatown" strip has become a popular late-night gathering
spot for chefs from other Asian restaurants And why not? The
food is fresh, nicely presented, and reasonably priced The
kitchen staff is willing to customize dishes upon request, and
the serving staff is reliably fast Perhaps most important, kara-
oke equipment is in place when the mood strikes $-$$

Scorch Grillhouse and Wine Bar
13750 Biscayne Blvd., 305-949-5588
www.scorchgrillhouse.com
Though some food folks were initially exasperated when yet
another Latn-influenced grill replaced one of our area's few
Vietnamese restaurants, its hard to bear a grudge at a friendly
casual neighborhood place that offers monster ten-ounce char-
grilled burgers, with potatoes or salad, for $8 50, steaks, plus a
side and a sauce or veg topper, for nine bucks at lunch, $15 to
$18 75 (the menu's top price) at night, and threedollar glasses
of decent house wine $-$$

Sushi House
15911 Biscayne Blvd., 305-947-6002
In terms of decor drama, this sushi spot seems to have
taken its cue from Philippe Starck sheer floor-to-ceiling


drapes, for starters The sushi list, too, is over the top, featur-
ing monster makis like the Cubbie Comfort spicy tuna, soft-
shell crab, shrimp and eel tempura, plus avocado, jalapenos,
and cilantro, topped with not one but three sauces wasabi,
teriyaki, and spicy mayo Hawaiian King Crab contains
unprecedented ingredients like tomatoes, green peppers,
and pineapple Boutique wines, artisan sakes, and cocktails
are as exotic as the cuisine $$$-$$$$

Tuna's Raw Bar and Grille
17850 W. Dixie Hwy.
305-932-0630
www.tunasrawbarandgrille.com
The reincarnated Tuna's has gained new owners, a new name,
a dazzling outdoor bar and dining area, and a newly impressive
selection of raw-bar specialties cold-water oysters from the
Northeast, plus Blue Points, Malpecs, Island Creeks, and more
Traditional house favorites remain, and the emphasis is still on
fresh fish from local waters Open daily tll 2 00 a m, the place
can get rather festive after midnight, but since the kitchen is
open till closing, Tuna's draws a serious late-night dining crowd,
too $$-$$$




Anthony's Coal-Fired Pizza
17901 Biscayne Blvd.
305-830-2625
www.anthonyscoalfiredpizza.com
Coal is what its all about here a coal-fired oven (like
that at Lombardi's, Patsy's, John's, or Grimaldi's in New
York) producing the intense 800-degree heat to turn
out, in mere minutes, a pie with the classic thin, crisp-
bottomed, beautifully char-bubbled crust that fans of the
above legendary pizzerias crave Expect neither bargain-
chain prices, a huge selection of toppings, nor much else
on the menu Anthony's doesjust a few things, and does
them right $$

Bella Luna
19575 Biscayne Blvd. Aventura Mall,
305-792-9330
www.bellalunaaventura.com
If the menu here looks familiar, it should It's nearly iden-
tical to that at the Upper Eastside's Luna Cafe and, with
minor variations, at all the rest of Tom Billante's eateries
(Rosalia, Villaggio, Carpaccio), right down to the typeface
But no argument from here In a mall a setting more
accustomed to food court dishes like carpaccio al sal-
mone (crudo, with portobellos, capers, parmesan slices,
and lemon/tomato dressing) and linguine carbonara (in
creamy sauce with pancetta and shallots) are a breath of
fresh, albeit familiar, air $$-$$$

Bourbon Steak
19999 W. Country Club Dr.
(Fairmont Hotel, Turnberry Resort)
786-279-0658
www.michaelmina.net
At Bourbon Steak, a venture in the exploding restaurant
empire of chef Michael Mina, a multiple James Beard
award winner, steakhouse fare is just where the fare
starts There are also Mina's ingenious signature dishes,
like an elegant deconstructed lobster/baby vegetable
pot pie, a raw bar, and enough delectable vegetable/
seafood starters and sides for noncarnivores to assemble
a happy meal But don't neglect the steak -flavorful
dry-aged Angus, 100-percent Wagyu American Kobe,


swoonworthy grade A5 Japanese Kobe, and butter-
poached prime rib, all cooked to perfection $$$$$

Chef Allen's
19088 NE 29th Ave;, 305-935-2900
www.chefallens.com
After 20 years of success in the same location, many chefs
would coast on their backlog of tried-and-true dishes And it's
doubtful that kindly Allen Susser would freak out his many
regulars by eliminating from the menu the Bahamian lobster
and crab cakes But lobster-lovers will find that the 20th
anniversary menus also offer new excitements like tandoorl-
spiced rock lobster, along with what might be the ultimate
mac' cheese lobster crab macaroni in a Frls vodka sauce
with mushrooms, scallions, and parmesan The famous des-
sert souffle's flavor changes daily, but it always did $$$$$

II Migliore
2576 NE Miami Gardens Dr.
305-792-2902
Chef Neal Cooper's attractive trattoria gets the food right, as
well as the ambiance As in Italy, dishes rely on impeccable
ingredients and straightforward recipes that don't overcom-
plicate, cover up, or otherwise muck about with that perfec-
tion Fresh fettuccine with white truffle oil and mixed wild
mushrooms needs nothing else Neither does the signature
Polio Al Mattone, marinated in herbs and cooked under a
brick And even low-carb dieters happily go to hell in a hand
basket when faced with a mound of potatoes alla Toscana,
herb-sprinkled French fries $$-$$$

Mahogany Grille
2190 NW 183rd St., 305-626-8100
Mahogany Grille has drawn critical raves and an inter-
national clientele since retired major league outfielder
Andre Dawson and his brother transformed this place
in 2007 Today It's white tablecloths and, naturally,
mahogany The menu is a sort of trendy yet traditional
soul fusion of food from several African diaspora
regions Carolina Low Country (buttery cheese grits
with shrimp, sausage, and cream gravy), the Caribbean
(conch-packed fritters or salad), and the Old South
(lightly buttermilk-battered fried chicken) The chicken
is perhaps Miami's best $$-$$$


Pilar
20475 Biscayne Blvd.
305-937-2777, www.pilarrestaurant.com
Chef/owner Scott Fredel previously worked for Norman Van
Aken and Mark Militello He has been executive chef at
Rumi, and cooked at NYC's James Beard House Armed with
those impressive credentials, Fredel and his wife launched
Pilar (named for Hemingways boat) aiming to prove that
top restaurants can be affordable Consider it proven
Florlbbean-style seafood is the specialty fresh hearts of
palm slaw and Caribbean curry sauce, rock shrimp spring
rolls with sweet soy glaze, yellowtail snapper with tomato-
herb vinaigrette Forget its strip-mall location The restaurant
itself is elegant $$-$$$

Pizza Roma
19090 NE 29th Ave., 305-937-4884
Despite its name, this homey hidden eatery serves not Romes
wood-cooked, crunchy-crusted pizzas but New York-style pies
with medium-thick crusts pliable enough to fold in half for neat
street eatng Unlike chains, though, this indie is accommodat-
ing so if you want your crust thin and crisp just ask Also fea-
tured are Italian-American entrees like baked manicotti that'ss
mani-goat", for those not from NJ) big enough to share, and
sub sandwiches, here called bullets," to put you in a Sopranos
frame of mind $$

The Soup Man
20475 Biscayne Blvd. #G-8, 305-466-9033
The real soup man behind this franchise is Al Yeganeh, an
antisocial Manhattan restaurant proprietor made notori-
ous, on a Seinfeld episode, as the soup Nazi" On the
menu ten different premium soups each day The selec-
tion is carefully balanced among meat/poultry-based and
vegetarian, clear and creamy (like the eaters signature
shellfish-packed lobster bisque), chilled and hot, familiar
(chicken noodle) and exotic (mulligatawny) All soups
come with gourmet bread, fruit, and imported chocolate
Also available are salads, sandwiches, and wraps $-$$

Sushi Siam
19575 Biscayne Blvd.
305-932-8955
(See Miami / Upper Eastside listing)


FLATBREAD
SANDWICHES - .- W

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TEL: 305-754-8002 www.schnitzelhausmiami.com

1085 N.E. 79th Street/Causeway, Miami, FL 33138


August 2009


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