Biscayne times
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00099644/00065
 Material Information
Title: Biscayne times
Physical Description: Newspaper
Language: English
Publisher: Biscayne Media, LLC
Place of Publication: Miami, Florida
Creation Date: March 2012
Publication Date: 04-2012
Genre: newspaper   ( sobekcm )
 Record Information
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
System ID: UF00099644:00065

Full Text


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April 2012

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April 2012

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

AdrienneArsht Center

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Miami City Ballet
presents Program IV
2PM []
Experience this classic
romantic comedy and
the sheer joy of its
Delibes score!
4 PM F

r Moscow
4 PM ,
Lovers of ABC's
Pan Am and
AMC's Mad Men
will go wild for the
'60s-set of Moscow!

4PM F]
Last chance to catch
this World Premiere



7:30 PM []
A prominent South
Florida family find
their world challenged
by the life-changing
events of 1962.

7:30 PM i
Prepare to time travel
to Miami, 1962.



7:30 PM H]
Cold War and the
influx of Cuban
immigrants to Miami
set the stage for this
family drama.

7:30 PM H
An all-out showdown
as past and present,
East and West collide
in this comic look at
how we got to where
we are today.




7:30 PM I]
From award-winning
South Florida
Michael McKeever,
author of South Beach
Babylon and Melt.

7:30 PM M
A Night in Rio
8PM [
International music
legend Sergio Mendes
brings his sizzling
samba sound to
Jazz Roots!

An Evening
with Yanni
8PM Fm
Returning to his
roots with a live
performance that will
deliver to old and new
fans the very best of

Death and
Harry Houdini
7:30 PM ]1
"A thrilling ride!"
Time Out Chicago
Florida Grand Opera
Romoo et Juliette
8PM [E

7:30 PM ]
World premiere
comedy presented
by Zoetic Stage.

7:30 PM H
New World Symphony
presents "Dual Forces"
8PM m
Fifth Symphony will
rock the Knight
Concert Hall in this
powerful series finale!
Florida Grand Opera
Romeo et Juliette
An Evening
with Yanni
8PM i
Yanni is back with an
all-new show of music
from his latest album
"Truth Of Touch."
Death and
Harry Houdini
2 & 7:30 PM []
"Ingeniously written
and directed!"
Chicago Sun-Times

RYC MMIvG orivi j
RThe final production of
the season will be
Gounod's Romeo et
e Juliette, not seen at

APRIL 1 FGO since 2004. -
Florida Grand Opera
Rombo et Juliette
Death and
Harry Houdini
4 PM .j
"A helluva party! Dennis
Watkins is simply
magnificent as Houdini."
Chicago Reader


305.949.6722 arshtcenter.org I


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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com April 2012


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I TEra] I1l~ llDINING


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

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April 2012

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April 2012

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

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32 Like a Rocket: Midtown Takes Off
20 Feedback: Letters
24 Miami's King: Jack King
26 Christian Cipriani: Urbania
28 BizBuzz
52 There's a Reason They Call It Boulevard of Dreams
52 Speeding Drivers and Falling Home Prices
53 The Idea: Millions and Millions of Dollars for Parks
62 Jen: Educated Hands for Tensed-Up Bodies
62 Mark: Here's Your Hat, What's Your Hurry?
66 Shari: A Garden in the Sky: Condo Veggies
68 Gaspar: Too Cool for School
70 Wendy: Something Wet This Way Comes
72 Frank: Bad News, Good News About Belle Meade
74 Anne Tschida: Mark Diamond Multi-Dimensional Man
76 Melissa Wallen: Galleries + Museums
79 Events Calendar
80 Biscayne Crime Beat
82 Jim W. Harper: Sweet Signs of Success in BHI
84 Pawsitively Pets: Addressing Doggie Disorders
86 Your Garden: Springtime Wisdom
87 Picture Story: The Aftermath: September 18, 1926
88 Going Green: How Green Is Your April?
89 Kids and the City: Don't Sweat the Sex Talk
90 Vino: Low-Cost Whites That Won't Tax Your Palate
91 NEW! Dish: More Openings Than Closings
92 Restaurant Listings: 308 Biscayne Corridor Restaurants

M1 c*Filccre.- wed



PO Box 370566, Miami, FL 33137 www.biscaynetimes.com
Serving communities along the Biscayne Corridor: Arch Creek East, Aventura, Bay Point, Bayside, Biscayne
Park, Belle Meade, Buena Vista, Coventry, Design District, Downtown, Eastern Shores, Edgewater, El Portal,
Enchanted Lake, Hibiscus Island, Highland Lakes, Keystone Point, Miami Shores, Morningside, North
Greynolds, North Bay Island, North Miami, North Miami Beach, Oak Forest, Oakland Grove, Palm Grove,
Palm Island, Sans Souci, Shorecrest, Sky Lake, Sparling Lake, Star Island, Wynwood, and Venetian Islands

Jim Mullin
Erik Bojnansky Senior Writer
Anne Tschida, Arts Editor
Pamela Robin Brandt, Crystal Brewe,
Terence Cantarella, Christian Cipriani,
Bill Citara, Karen-Janine Cohen, Wendy
Doscher-Smith, Gaspar Gonzalez,
Margaret Griffis, Jim W. Harper, Lisa
Hartman, Jen Karetnick, Derek McCann,
Frank Rollason, Silvia Ros,
Shari Lynn Rothstein-Kramer, Mark Sell,
Jeff Shimonski, Melissa Wallen

Sal Monterosso
Marc Ruehle
Nancy Newhart
Lynn Bovd
Marcy Mock
DP Designs
South Florida Distributors
Stuart Web, Inc.

All articles, photos, and artwork in the Biscayne Times are copyrighted by Biscayne Media, LLC. Any duplication or reprinting
without authorized wntten consent from the publisher is prohibited.

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Serving the medical needs of the Miami Beach
community for more than 35 years

Miami Beach Community Health Center North 11645 Biscayne Blvd., Suite 103-104, Miami, FL, 33181

305-538-8835 www iaibeachhealh.org I ealthcare made ea

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

Hampton South of Awntura
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Commotnre Plaza of Aveunura Coral Gables
Gr-M t sectee n i ."If n, Wl 0Ilad BhDl rt G.urJd i;j.Ald I- dt.I-:W-&/.-
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Hidden Bay
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Mediterraneln B6 bed 85 hath 2 bLed 2 5 bUthJ.ril -- ., ygui:.-u-ug( 110 wate wfi nR k 4 te 4
whafrrnt hoan oNenrng an open s po c 'ut sirg & drn g buth aptiL ;,c:. Or w 2nd Ingl
kitchen wih Vdng pro app anwMaang w wood ~l.c Lg ~i~itd ~ reo & Frd rt.u w r
master, r~rtil f am aeor, iron w ~tu C sput2 Li'L urd.:.'.,: b rif o rain dnr r~ atw LIabrn
astaircan, wa beer, pooi. E/IatL & L.-j.-yi.Jul 1 C.r Ci---u; PrO tenr bthruon & mnorw La~ j,.iLy:rI &
the tfet goes on $2,4O00. 0O 0m & 24 d 4LJu-' $29 1399 pool Terr neub. v '499 ,13D
hMendllltnmbirm/A1 575C71 www denarubbin cGin/M1 340113 www dunmerubin.com, 01371952

Cunili jWide
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13510 001


Courtyards Da Aventurs
2 cir 3 bed 25 bea. tbIne o~tering
fa -Ug iv g wrU Wh J11 , LC' ,.--'
& rrJiLL neljcd kitchen w new
Sah SZEn 8 h& d E -p 1ttAf tr
biaLh custom Igitin crt.I. bwtifre, in
S. i i.*-ji: $389000
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April 2012 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

10 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com April 2012





RELl je r tor@cESTATEomBROct

Keystone Point ocean access 4br/3ba, pool,
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wall, and brand new custom dockage for 75'
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Located 1 lot off the wide bay on cul de sac. Lot
size 112' x 125' approx 14,000 sq ft. New seawall
90' of dock (112' on water) 25,000 Ib boatlift, park
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Owner will finance with 30% down $1.4M

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3bdr/2.5bth, pool, 2 car garage, 65' of
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4 Bdr 3 Bth pool 2 Car Garage 3300 Sq Ft Elegal
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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


April 2012



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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


April 2012

The Preserve

Touunhome Condos

Gated town home living amongst Miami's Upper East Side Communities.
l o ,

3 BD / 2 BA Upper Level 1,549 $299,000 $2,000/mo
2 BD / 2 BA 3-level 1,287 +/- $249,000 $1,700/mo
2 BD / 2 BA Lower Level 1,045 $199,000 $1,600/mo

The Preserve Town Home Condos is a tranquil and beautiful upscale
community adjacent to and tucked into Miami Shores built on 6 acres of
land, surrounded by mature oak trees and tropical landscaping, and has
a beautiful park area as well as a community pool. Built in 2005 & 2006,
the Preserve Townhome Condos consists of 98 two- and three- bed-
room residences each with a private garage. Professionally managed by
the Continental Group with fully functioning board of directors.



amG 3
O..G 5
amG 6



8940 I1






Community highlights:
* 98 Units in 12 building with 3 town home styles
* One condo association
* Over 70% owner occupied.
* More than 12.5% in reserves.
* Application in process for anticipated
submission for FNMA approval.
Gated community with central park, community
room and pool.
Close to Shores Shopping Center & Publix.
East of Biscayne Blvd on NE 90th Street
4 5 blocks to the bay.




305 582 2424

April 2012 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com



Bl Hwaour

MIahi Badh

Luxury Miami Real Estate Hablamos Espanol

3873 NE 163rd Street, N Miami Beach, FL 33160 Nous parlons francais
PH 305.335.4144 | FREE 877.368.2318 Falamos Portugues

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com April 2012


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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

The reason is because we realized before our competitors, both large and small brokerages, that the MLS was just
not enough. We needed to provide information and keep up with technology. In knowing this, we have lapped our
competition in online social media, Internet search ability and credibility.

April 2012

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012


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We Know Real Estate.

We Care About People.

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"When we adopted our beautiful
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that we needed more space...
For us, this became an opportunity to find our "forever
home." We wanted a house we could grow with and
love, that would reflect us and become the center of
our family life. To find that, we needed a realtor who
I would understand who we


" A
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"'i are and had the patience
E and the tenacity to make
it happen. We needed a
realtor who would become
a partner in making our
dreams a reality. That's what
George6 did for us. The
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George6 was exceptional. We
recommend George6 and her team
without reservation."
- Chorles, Madeline & Keith Rinehard

f you are interested in a team of experienced professionals
dedicating 100% of their attention to every aspect
of your real estate transaction,


Call Today. (305) 608-5269

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April 2012 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com April 2012


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012



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Palatial Pinetree Estate Miami Beach
Elegant, recently renovated, one of the best homes in Miami Beach. Very
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For showing call: Nesti Mendoza (917) 405 5028

April 2012 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com







Wednesday, April 25

8 pm Fountain Plaza

the Shops at

Grand Opening
Friday, April 20
5:30 pm
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the Shops at

Commentary: LETTERS

Blue Is the New Green
I enjoyed reading the article "Drinking
in the Blue" (March 2012) by Jim W.
Harper because it was unique and eye-
opening. "Go Green" is always being
advertised, but I've never heard about
"Going Blue" and I believe we should all
contribute to helping our oceans.
Our oceans are essential to our en-
vironment and people don't realize how
dumping everything into them is going
to affect us if we keep harming them
and not doing anything about it. Harper
wrote, "The unfortunate 'out of sight, out
of mind' mentality puts the ocean at an
extreme disadvantage," and I completely
agree with this statement. Young adults
from this generation don't think about
the ocean. We're too busy with school,
Facebook, and parties.
I believe local blue organizations
like the Surfrider Foundation should visit
different schools to raise awareness for
students. Going blue should be adver-
tised more to the public, and Harper's
meet-up "Blue Drinks South Florida" is
a clever way to start some action for our
oceans. If people attend, I'm sure they
can come up with good ideas.
Tania Centeno
Bay Harbor Islands

What, the Artist's Own Work Is
Chopped Liver?
It was great to read Anne Tschida's story
about Oliver Sanchez ("The Fabricator,"
March 2012). His ability to put things
together, to actually construct things,
has certainly made him a central figure
here in Miami.
He and his wife Min were also at the
center of the art scene of the early 1980s
in New York, when Keith Haring, Kenny
Scharf, and other graffiti artists took the
world art scene by storm.
Oliver is a very creative working
artist, as the article also mentions, but
the article doesn't really do justice to the
complex and very ironic body of work,
particularly paintings, but also sculp-
tures, he's created.
Sometimes I think the world of
contemporary art places a disproportion-
ate value on the work that is the most
successful commercially; as a result, we
often see artists putting more energy
into setting up networks for commercial
success than into the conception and
creation of the work itself.
I'd like to suggest that this may be
the case with Oliver Sanchez's way
of working, and particularly with his

nonself-promotional style.
Everybody's got to eat and pay the
light bill, and many artists who find the
introspective and personal practices
associated with artistic creation a bit
antithetical to self-promotion demands
made by a voracious art market.
I'd venture that Oliver fabricates
other artists' work in order to be able to
create his own; that this is his "day job."
As a result, I wish the article had placed
more emphasis on his own work.
David Rohn
Upper Eastside

Talk About Good Bagels!
I wanted to thank Shari Lynn Rothstein-
Kramer for her wonderful recent article
"Rating the Round Dough" (March 2012).
It always gives us great pleasure when
mii\ c i-s" appreciate the quality of our
home-made products. We are one of the
few places left that still hand-makes and
hand-rolls the bagels, and we take a lot
of pride in that.
I hope she will introduce herself
when she comes to visit us again, as I
would like to thank her personally and
introduce her to our amazing array of
yummy items made on-premises. From
the salads (tuna, egg, whitefish, etc.) to
the soups to the delectable baked goods,
and everything in between. I promise,
she won't be disappointed!
Again, thanks to Shari for rating
our bagels the tops in New York's sixth
Paul Kruss
Mo's Bagels & Deli, Aventura

You Are Baseless About the
In response to Frank Rollason's column
"Chronic Failure on Miami's Mean
Streets" (March 2012), clearly the writer
has not been paying attention and is
poorly informed. Maybe he chooses to
ignore success and reality when it stares
him in the face. Maybe he just simply
takes pleasure in ripping apart success?
In 1993, when the Homeless Trust
was created, there were 8000 homeless
people on the streets of Miami-Dade
County. Presently there are less than 900.
The Homeless Trust has created more than
6000 beds of housing and myriad support
services. We have been recognized as a
national model by three U.S. HUD secre-
taries. We have been commended nation-
ally by HUD and the Interagency Council

Continued on page 22

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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012



April 2012 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


April 2012

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14771 Biscayne Blvd.
North Miami Beach, FL 33181
Just North of Costco in the Biscayne Commons Plaza


BMMO@5 *0~amB

Commentary: LETTERS

Continued from page 22

on Homelessness for having zero homeless
families on our streets.
I guess they have it all wrong as well.
I guess Mr. Rollason knows better.
Drive just a few minutes north of us
to our neighboring county and you will
find waiting lists for homeless families
while they sleep in their cars. Our Home-
less Assistance Centers run by our private
sector partner, the Chapman Partner-
ship, have served more than 88,000 men,
women, and children, with approximately
30 percent of them being chronically
homeless people, as Mr. Rollason referred
to, and we have a 63-percent success rate.
The 15,000 people a year we serve in
our system receive a variety of services,
including medical, dental, psychiatric,
and substance abuse services along
with housing. People may access short,
medium, or permanent housing and do
not have to enter our shelter system to do
so. The Trust spends approximately $5
million a year on Housing First and Safe
Haven models, which place chronically
homeless persons right off of the street
into housing. There is no requirement for
them to be engaged in drug or alcohol
treatment, or any other treatment model.
The program is designed to meet
the person at their own level and place
them into housing first and then engage
them in services if and when they
are ready. This model has been deemed
best practice nationally, and we maintain
an 89-percent success rate of keeping
chronically homeless people housed.
Last year we used almost $1 million
as a pilot, pay-for-performance program,
where homeless-provider agencies were
paid based on performance benchmarks
for getting this population housed. If a
homeless person doesn't stay placed in
housing, the provider doesn't get paid
- and we make all of the referrals of
the people served. These are the most
chronically homeless people we have.
That is certainly not the story Mr.
Rollason wrote and misled Biscayne Times
readers about! People who drink their own
urine, people who have been homeless
for ten years and the model is working.
Not for everyone, but 89 percent with this
population is an excellent outcome.
In terms of Mr. Rollason's comments
about forming a task force of appropriate
professionals to address the problem, we
have been doing this for two decades. He
must simply be unaware. Our board and

committees are made up of well-respect-
ed social service professionals, formerly
homeless persons, religious leaders,
business and government leaders.
We are constantly advancing our
strategies and look to other communi-
ties for best-practice models, as other
communities look to us for the same.
Mr. Rollason has attended several of our
Trust meetings, but has not been there
for years. Instead of him firing shots
under the cover of a laptop, if he really
wants to help us in our mission of ending
homelessness, he would benefit from
participating in our meetings to see how
we are in fact addressing these issues.
Ronald L. Book, chairman
David Raymond, executive director
Miami-Dade County Homeless Trust

Condos, Over and Out
I totally agree with Christian Cipriani's
column "Strangers Next Door" (March
2012) about condo living. I have been
there and done that.
I was fortunate to have sold my
condo about one year ago and now I am
a homeowner. Thank God!
I do not miss condo living at all!
Great article!
Name Withheld by Request

Nicole Has a Dog in This Park Fight
I am responding to Lisa Hartman's
recent article "Don't Worry, He's Friend-
ly" (February 2012). I think Hartman
has a valid view point for the "DINOS"
(Dogs In Need of Space), but I can also
see the side of the "MDIF" (My Dog Is
Friendly) gang.
I am a "pet parent" of two dogs: one
is a small Boston terrier and the other a
recently rescued boxer, both of which I
always walk on a leash. My frustration
is that even though my dogs get walked
for at least 30 minutes daily, the boxer
needs a huge open space to completely
let loose and run at full speed. (Riding a
bike with him is not enough; he runs like
a greyhound on a track!)
The Biscayne Corridor is in desper-
ate need of some enclosed dog parks
where our dogs can let loose and not
bother DINOs! Why is the only enclosed
dog park in our area the one at Blue
condominium? It is not a convenient
place in which to walk, nor is there park-
ing (unless you live at Blue). I also don't
want to have to drive to the Beach to one

Continued on page 60

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com April 2012

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April 2012

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Commentary: MIAMI'S KING

Private Money Mend the

Marine Stadium?

Seems like an easy call, right? Not in Miami

By Jack King
BT Contributor

Although I'm pretty much retired,
it's not always easy to completely
disassociate yourself with the
way you've lived your life for the past
50 years. Every now and then someone
calls me and asks for my thoughts or
assistance. Recently it happened with the
Miami Marine Stadium.
A nonprofit group called Friends of
Miami Marine Stadium had approached
the City of Miami wishing to raise $30
million to refurbish the iconic, dramati-
cally cantilevered stadium, which was
damaged by Hurricane Andrew in 1992
and has sat in disrepair since then.
The original proposal was for Friends
to form a partnership with the city, de-
velop a plan, and come back in six months
for final commission approval.
Now, it seems to me that if a
nonprofit group wants to give your city
$30 million to do something the city
is incapable of doing, that would be a
Obviously it was not, as the city
commission deferred the issue twice
before voting on March 8 to approve it.
Even then the vote was a contentious 3-2.
No doubt there are problems with
public-private partnerships, and in
Miami, there are no guidelines for them.
If there were, they'd have to be flexible,
as the political and economic climate is

forever changing. That doesn't mean it
can't happen; it just means that, in this
case, there hasn't been much political
will to do it. Maybe it's just too difficult
for our politicians to grandstand an intel-
lectual process.
After the community groups made
their presentations to the commission,
the commissioners began commenting,
starting with Marc Sarnoff. He was the
only commissioner to note there was
no procedure for this type of process,
and also observed that even though the
Friends group was going to raise the
money and pay for the repairs, there was
no plan to pay for the operation of the
Marine Stadium in the future.
He must have said it a half-dozen
times, and I had the feeling he kept
repeating it because he didn't think the
other commissioners really got it. Sort
of like how your kindergarten teacher
repeated facts to you until you got them.
The conversation went down the dais
to Frank Carollo, who just seemed to be
mad as hell and wouldn't support anything
that anyone else favored. Not unusual for
him; he's been like this for years.
No matter what anybody said, he
was voting against it. It also appeared
that he had not done his homework on
the issue, confusing the Marine Stadium
issue with a funding resolution for the
Marine Stadium Marina seawall. You'd
think a commissioner would at least get
his facts straight even if he is going to

A restored Miami Marine Stadium as envisioned by Miami architect
Arseni Varabyeu.

vote against it.
Commissioner Willy Gort mumbled
a few words that didn't mean much and
said he supported it.
And then on to Michelle Spence-
Jones. She went off on one of her famous
diatribes that must have lasted an hour.
Rather than going through her rant piece
by piece, let me translate it for you.
Essentially she said she would not
support anything that has to do with
anything in the community until she got
her fair share of it. In other words, she's
back and open for business.
My guess is that she will want some
of the revenue generated by the develop-
ment of the Marine Stadium property -
if there is any revenue. The Virginia Key
Trust, which runs the historic black beach
and park at the eastern end of Virginia
Key, has been bleeding cash and has no
new funding sources. Look for Spence-
Jones to dip her hand into any bucket that
has money. If you allow her to do that,
she'll vote for anything you wish.
She did make the most bizarre state-
ment of the day, saying that she wanted
to make sure the Friends of Miami
Marine Stadium did not abuse the
"Miami brand" while raising funds, and

wanted the funds put into a city account.
Excuse me? How could any group abuse
the Miami brand more than the city com-
mission already has?
Finally commission chairman Fran-
cis Suarez put in his two cents, support-
ing the measure in a back-handed sort of
way. More interesting was that Suarez
brought up the "Carollo Amendment"
to the city charter (that would be Joe
Carollo), which requires a referendum to
approve the leasing or selling any city-
owned waterfront property.
It became immediately evident that
he had no understanding of the amend-
ment, and when he asked city attorney
Julie Bru for clarification, she also got it
wrong. What a group!
The city has been less than spectacu-
lar in its management of city land. How
about the fine way the city handled the
Orange Bowl, Manuel Artime Theater,
Knight Center, the Tower Theater, and
Jungle Island to name just a few?
It only seems to work when the city
simply gives the property away. Not a
grand track record of stewardship of
public lands.

Feedback: letters@obiscaynetimes.com



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April 2012

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April 2012 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com 25


Commentary: URBANIA

Up from the Underground

Electronic music has gone mainstream, and expired in the process

By Christian Cipriani
BT Contributor
To claim that I'm getting old is,
on paper, a downright lie. I turn
30 this June, but I'm an old soul.
Events like Ultra Music Festival now
serve to reinforce just how prematurely
aged this city makes me feel.
I arrived in Miami seven years ago by
way of London and New York. Like many
other transplants, I never meant to end up here.
I followed a girl she didn't work out, Miami
did. But for a kid who came of age raving in
Pittsburgh through the late 1990s, ending up
here was the perfect happy accident
The electronic music bug bit me
hard back in high school, but in my
blue-collar town, synthesizers and
drum machines didn't make much
cultural noise. Festival-headlining DJs
were playing ice rinks and warehouses.
Rock and roll ruled. So I obsessed alone
over high-priced British music maga-
zines and imagined myself at Glaston-
bury. I bought cheap turntables and
spent my minimum wages on expensive,
imported vinyl.

Before the Internet was the robust,
all-knowing resource it is today, being
a connoisseur of niche music was nerdy
detective work. It wasn't particularly cool or
sexy, and the effort it required sparked real
commitment and community. Now, looking
back, every good friendship I have in
every city around the globe where I've lived
- can be traced to a shared love of music.
So when I arrived in Miami seven
years ago, filled with awe and wonder
and expectations, I immersed myself in
music and nightlife. More than any-
thing, I looked forward to the Winter
Music Conference.
I'd read about Bill Kelly's fabled
event in specialty music mags since I
was a wannabe DJ back in the Steel City.
I knew it to be an international meeting
point for every relevant electronic-music
artist in the world, and a destination for
hardcore globetrotting clubbers.
So for five years I dove headlong
into experiencing WMC week with the
enthusiasm of a newcomer and the con-
nections of a local. I knew the people at
the door, I was on the list, I had a dozen
production-level wristbands to Ultra.

I could leave an all-day event exhausted
and sweaty, grab a shower, amass a group
of friends, and march confidently into party
after party. It was as if we could summon a
night of cosmic perfection at will those
irreplaceable moments of youth in which
everything comes together like a montage.
But in the last year or two something
has changed and not just in my social life.
This year was electronic music's
coming-out party. It's no longer a fringe
cultural phenomenon, the biggest thing
in the world that no one is paying atten-
tion to. The Grammys alone proved this.
Commercial radio is now overrun with
what sounds like decade-old trance mixed
with hip-hop. "Underground" producers
like Diplo are reaping millions making hits
for Beyonce and Lil Wayne. Ultra Music
Festival is out on the street literally! It's
in the middle of downtown, blocking Bis-
cayne Boulevard and broadcasting high-
decibel madness into the heart Miami's
business, tourist, and residential centers.
There will always be new artists
bringing sounds that the rest of the
world will catch onto in five years, but
2012 was the year electronic music went
fully mainstream. This year's festivities
were never more commercialized, more
crowded, and more expensive.
And I've never been less interested.

If Paris Hilton's front-row fist-pumping
at Masquerade Motel wasn't proof enough of
electronic music's emergence from the under-
ground, then look no further than Madonna
herself, who stepped onstage at Ultra to let
everyone know it was her first time there.
As I write this, I'm sitting back on
my balcony, listening to the last ghostly,
throbbing bass lines echo across Bis-
cayne Bay from God knows where. The
setting sun is throwing an orange glow
down the condo at the end of my street.
I know the sun's not setting just on
today, nor just on a vibrant and memorable
chapter of my young life, but on something
much bigger. And maybe it happened
sooner and I'm just realizing it, but the
electronic music and DJ culture that I fell
in love with as a teenager is dead.
There is no more "electronic music"
as WMC and Ultra want to sell it. It's all
just music. Pop music. Radio music. DJs
are now pop stars, and people are lined
up by the thousands ready to pay exor-
bitant prices for something packaged,
polished, and ready for prime time.
As for me, I'm closing my wallet and
moving on. As I said, I'll be 30 in June.
It feels like a good time to start the first
chapter of a new story.

Feedback: letters(aibiscaynetimes.com

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April 2012

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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

Our Sponsors: APRIL 2012

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

By Pamela Robin Brandt
BT Contributor

March 20 was when spring of-
ficially began, but somehow
April seems more like spring's
start this year perhaps because of
Easter (April 8, or April 15 for Greek
Orthodox folks) and Passover (April
6-14), and the symbolism, in both holi-
days, of rebirth and renewal.
Or maybe it's just all that Easter
candy (not to mention Seder dinners'
required four glasses of wine) that make
us feel all Peter Cottontail-perky.
Whatever your motivation, many BT
advertisers have offerings that will help
put the spring in your step.
Hop on down the bunny trail, for
instance, to Anise Taverna (620 NE
78th St., 305-758-2929) on April 15, from
4:00-10:00 p.m., for a $35 prix fixe Greek
Easter feast: an unlimited quantity of
traditional Greek dishes served family-
style, plus music, dancing (including
prizes for the best dancers), and possible
In one Biblical story, Jesus trans-
forms two fish and a few loaves of
bread into enough food to feed 5000
people. Though not quite the same, we
couldn't help thinking of the miracu-
lous multiplication upon noticing one of
April's ad coupon specials from Bagels

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& Company (11064 Biscayne Blvd.,
305-892-2435): Buy a dozen bagels, get
six free. For eat-in diners, the ad's other
coupons offer $3 off a minimum $15
meal, $5 off a $25 repast. And for those
celebrating Passover who don't want to
cook, B&C has complete dinner pack-
ages starting at $16.95 per person.
If you do want to do your holiday
cooking at home, professional-quality
equipment is what'll make the difference
between chore and pleasure. Visit Oves
Equipment (1940 NW 21st Terr., 305-
326-8010), which, this month, is having
a spring sale on commercial coolers,
plus plates and other accessories. You'll
also find their most popular ice machine,
the Manitowec QY-0214A-161, which
produces 220 pounds of ice in 24 hours.
Now, that's a party!
Honestly, we do realize that not all
people interpret that Biblical loaves and
fishes story as a reference to bagels and
lox. If your holiday needs are more spiri-
tual, Unity on the Bay (411 NE 21st St.,
305-573-9191) has a variety of events for
people of all faiths. An April 8 Maundy
Thursday service includes a communion
ceremony celebrating the Last Supper;
Easter Sunday services are at 9:00 and
11:00 a.m. On April 28, become trans-
ported by kirtan, an ancient drum/chant-
based musical art form, in performances
of Grammy-nominated Jai Uttal, tabla

master Daniel Paul, and Florida-grown
group The Mayapuris.
And thoughtfully, First United
Methodist Church (400 Biscayne Blvd.,
305-371-4706) is offering, as well as its
regular 11:00 a.m. service, a 7:00 a.m.
sunrise service on Easter morning, for
both early birds and those employed
during the church's normal Sunday hours.
Not all spiritual journeys are religious.
The Big Love, a six-week course from
life coach Catherine Patrick (786-
277-9835), is designed to teach you to
clear your internal barriers to love, and
become a love magnet. Starting April 15,
the course is 6:00 p.m. at Miami Beach's
Standard Hotel (40 Island Ave.); the $275
price includes indoor baths. An intro
class on April 11 is free.
Call 305-866-1234 for reservations
to celebrate a different sort of rejuve-
nation holiday: the first anniversary
party of Trio on the Bay (1601 79th St.
Cswy.). This restolounge's indoor/out-
door waterfront space, though beautiful,
has long been on the "Miami restaurant

graveyard" list, but under the TLC of
nightlife impresario Gerry Kelly, it
seems to have revived nicely. The party,
from 10:00 p.m. to 3:00 a.m., features
a complimentary vodka bar and passed
hors d'oeuvres from new chef Brandon
Whitestone, plus live performances. For
those who want to make a full night of it,
dinner is available prior, from 5:00 p.m.,
featuring fab new entries like shrimp
and grits.
Speaking of anniversaries: Famed
Canadian ladies' wear manufacturer
Joseph Ribkoff whose clothes have
been worn by Miss America but are
equally chic on a Florida beach con-
gratulates Statements Boutique (2118 NE
123rd St., 305-893-7559), where you can
find Ribkoff's versatile designs, on 25
years in business.
Another anniversary, and a remind-
er: April 7 is the big fundraising dinner
for the Pelican Harbor Seabird Station
(1279 NE 79th St. Cswy., 305-751-9840),

Continued on page 30

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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com April 2012

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

"i I,

April 2012 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

Continued from page 28

celebrating 32 years of caring for Miami
wildlife. The event takes place at the
Miami Shores Country Club. Buy your
tickets online today at www.pelicanhar-
bor.org. Price is just $45 for individuals
or $400 for a table often. Fab food and
lots for vegetarians, too.
Something new from an old Miami fa-
vorite: Laurenzo's Italian Center (16385
W. Dixie Hwy., 305-945-6381) announces
new cooked-to-order specialties in the
market's caf6, Saturday 3:00-6:00 p.m. and
noon-5:00 p.m. on Sunday. Try some of the
new dishes during one of April's Saturday-
afternoon wine tasting always free,
always featuring a different variety of
themed wines plus snack samples.
Hey, Scooby and Scratchy are
hungry, too! Fortunately, By Nature,
maker of gourmet, and all-natural, dog
and cat foods, is offering two deals this
month: Save $2 on small bags, and/or buy
four cans and get one free. Consult this
issue's ad or www.bynaturepetfoods,com
for local distributors of these delicious
and nutritious products.
Attention ladies: Aqua Girl 2012, an
opportunity to do good for others while
you party hearty, is here. Well, almost. The
festival is May 2-6, but it's not too early to
buy tickets and investigate in detail all the
live entertainment, dancing, cocktailing,
eating, fitness, networking/mingling, and
naturally, swimming opportunities at this
event benefiting our new advertiser, the
nonprofit Aqua Foundation for Women.
Go to www.aquagirl.org.
The Miami Gay & Lesbian Film
Festival (April 26-May 6) has just an-
nounced that Chely Wright (a long-clos-
eted country singer who finally came out
and chronicled her struggle in the award-
winning documentary Wish Me Away,
scheduled for screening on April 28) will
receive this year's inaugural Lavender
Heart Award on the fest's opening night.
For info on tix or on MGLFF member-
ship benefits (including discount/compli-
mentary tickets), visit www.mglff.com.
Now that we're into the subject of
closets: When we first saw the photo of
the scrumptious, custom-made, walk-in
unit in the ad of new advertiser Miami
Closet Systems (www.miamiclosetsys-
tems.com).... Well, our reaction was, if
all closets were this fabulous, we'd go
right back in. Whatever, this month read-
ers who present this issue's ad get 15%
off purchases of $1500 or more.

Seeking something to do with the
kids after April's early holidays are over?
Take them to LoudGirl Exchange (6621
Biscayne Blvd., 305-458-5783) on April
15, when the artsy, innovative family
shop hosts an environment-friendly
event in which participants make
kites from old tablecloths and fly them
in adjacent Legion Park. Additional
amusements: a mini cupcake tasting by
A Baking Girl, coffee by Wynwood's
artisanal Panther Coffee, and juices.
The whole family will also enjoy an
outing to the Shops at Midtown Miami
(3401 N. Miami Ave.) on April 25 for
this month's N I idlo'\ I Moonlit Movie,"
Puss in Boots. The film starts at 8:15
p.m., at Fountain Plaza. (There are a few
restaurant-related events in the Midtown
complex this month, too; please see
"Dish," the BT's new restaurant column
for details, page 91.)
Wondering about how to amuse -
productively the kids this summer? Con-
sider new advertiser Miami Country Day
School's summer camp, June 11-August 3.
Personally, when young, we couldn't wait
for the school year to end, but water slides,
game rooms, swimming, canoeing, mini
golf, and roughly 35 other similar activities
offered at the camp sound to us like, in the
words of contemporary philosopher Alice
Cooper, school's out for summer. For info/
enrollment: 305-779-7350.
If you're already thinking ahead to
school's-back-for-fall time, let us share
with you a best-kept-secret regarding
nursery-5th grade elementary schools:
new advertiser Miami Shores Commu-
nity Church School (9823 NE 4th Ave.,
305-757-5866). It's safe, it's cute, and it
has one of the best student/teacher ratios
in the country.
For students sixth through 12th
grades, particularly high schoolers
who need, or want, to pick up one or
two credits this summer, check out the
summer camp of new advertiser Allison
Academy (1881 NE 164th St., 305-940-
3922). Aside from the academics, the
camp offers athletics and field trips, so
summertime is still fun time.
Let's face it: To really reinvent your
life for the better, what you need is...
someone else to do it. A professional!
Call new advertiser Elite Concierge (733
NE 73rd St., 786-691-0933), whose suave
master life-organizers will run your
errands, do your shopping, coordinate
your vacation plans, house sit (including
pet care), coordinate your home or office
moves, provide notary services, care for

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com April 2012

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

your elderly relatives, and oversee post-
medical procedures.
They won't do the actual medical
procedures, though. Or body improve-
ment stuff, darn it. You'll have to get
fit yourself. But we've got advertisers
who'll help.
New advertiser Orange Theory
Fitness (18839A Biscayne Blvd., 305-
400-0544) promises that its unique
system of group personal training -
involving four 10-30 minute intervals
that build strength and increase energy
- will push your body to do its best long
after the one-hour session ends. And the
group aspect makes personal training
(an unbeatable motivator, but in its usual
one-on-one form, hideously expensive)
affordable. Bring in this issue's ad for
a free session for you and a friend, and
see for yourself. You can also sign up for
Orange's six-week weight-loss challenge
for a chance to win $2500. We love one
of their many motivational mottos: "Ex-
ercise in the morning, before your brain
figures out what you're doing."
At Beach Beauty (6685 Collins
Ave., Miami Beach, 305-864-8838), BT
readers who purchase three months of
anti-aging Red Light Treatment (which
improves skin tone, reduces wrinkles,
controls pigmentation spots, shrinks
pores, and repairs elastin fibers to keep
skin firm all without the burning of
laser treatments) will receive a full $70
set of Red Light therapy lotions, free.
Additionally, owner Fernando Maestre
has extended his March offer of 50% off
for teeth-whitening.
Teeth looking tacky? For April,
Jose Alvarez DMD (3483 NE 163rd St.,
305-948-5002) is offering discounts on
same-day as in, instant improvement
- porcelain veneers: ten for $5000, eight
for $4800, six for $4200.
This offer seems almost unbeliev-
able, but Biscayne Dental Center
(14771 Biscayne Blvd., 305-945-7745)
sez it's true: This month they're offer-
ing readers free (FREE!) dental exams
and digital x-rays. For those needing
orthodontic treatment, free consultations
for affordable braces are also offered, as
well as Zoom teeth whitening, normally
$425, for only $249.
Want to renew your home big time,
but have small pockets? Visit new adver-
tiser Go Modern (2700 Biscayne Blvd.,
305-576-1990), whose new 10,000-foot
showroom just celebrated its grand open-
ing on March 29. Prices for the com-
pany's striking contemporary furniture

are known as being always low, but are a
steal during this month's opening sale.
And our longtime friends at Herval
Furniture, where the all the coolest con-
temporary furniture is always in stock
and ready for delivery/instant gratifica-
tion, have big news: While Herval's
downtown showroom (1730 Biscayne
Blvd., 305-377-1221) remains as is, the
Aventura showroom is moving to a
bigger location on the same block: 2650
NE 189th St., 305-935-4545. So expect
new selections and an even larger inven-
tory. There's a deal for readers, too: Say
the magic words ncI\ showroom" this
month for 10% off purchases over $1000.
All these deals almost makes you
forget that April is tax time. Almost. But
Pasquale Pisana, president of TaxSta-
tion (286 NE 2nd St., 786-319-4433) re-
minds readers that they get a small break
this year: The filing date is April 17, not
April 15. File at TaxStation's convenient
downtown office.
Need some cash to appease the feds?
This month Michael Freiman at Aventura
Jewelry & Coin (19275 Biscayne Blvd.,
305-933-2646), who has been reliably ap-
praised as a genuine good guy, is offering
BT readers an extra dollar per pennyweight
for their gold. He also pays top dollar for
coins, and needs high-end watches.
And welcome to new advertiser
Freddy's, the Certified Diamond
Store (36 NE 1st St. #129, 305-371-8261),
where the high-end jewelry-buying is
discreet. (Valet parking is even available,
so the rich and famous can scoot in fast,
dodging the paparazzi.)
Finally, fellow addicts to all those
zillion-dollar Realtor TV reality shows:
Every potential property buyer seems to
seek heaven on earth. But don't you wonder
why someone would blow $4.5 mil on a
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panoramic view of a dozen schlock shops
and a perpetual traffic jam, when they could
spend a third of that for a peaceful, gated
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twice the space (including four bedrooms,
three baths, and state-of-the-art pro
chef-quality kitchen), plus a marble-paved
outdoor area with polished black-stone pool
and spa, extensive water frontage a true
paradise? Check out this issue's ad from
Peter Goldsmith (305-751-7185 or gold-
smithpe@comcast.net). The fabulous home
is listed by Community Realty.

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April 2012

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


- *cu hchuctalM

By Erik Bojnansky
Photos b\ Silvia Ros
'. U i
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Grant Stern doesn't live in Midtown
Miami, but he visits so often that
he considers it a second home.
"Oh, man! That's like a town within a
town there. So many places to go," says
Stern, an Edgewater resident who often
walks, bikes, or scooters there to meet
with clients or friends.
Spread over 56 acres along NE
36th Street and N. Miami Avenue,
Midtown Miami includes three
condominium towers that are nearly
95 percent occupied, an eclectic mix
of restaurants and independent busi-
nesses, office space, and the sprawl-
ing Shops at Midtown Miami, which
features chain stores like Target and
also entrepreneurial ventures such as
the lushly appointed Wine Vault.
Close to 1-95, Biscayne Boulevard,
and the Julia Tuttle Causeway, Mid-
town attracts visitors from all parts of
Miami-Dade County and beyond.
The "town within a town" has also been
credited with jump-starting investment
up and down the Biscayne Corridor,
particularly in neighboring Wynwood
and the Design District.
"That's our baby," beams Jack Cayre
of Midtown Equities, a Manhattan-based
company he runs with his father, Joseph.
Cayre (pronounced "carry") describes
the community he and his dad helped
create from a former railway storage
yard as "the Meat Packing District meets
SoHo meets South Beach."
Grant Stern is so enamored of that
SoHo-SoBe baby that he's become
protective of it. The mortgage broker
and real estate consultant has become
a vocal critic of a proposal to build a
165,000-square-foot Walmart at NE 31st
Street and Midtown Boulevard, which bi-
sects the development from north to south
and is also known as NE 1st Avenue.
Walmart, he warns, is infamous for
destroying competitors both large and
small by selling massive amounts of cheap
products assembled in China. "It will suck
the life out of so many small businesses
outside and inside of Midtown," predicts
Stern. "It will reduce everyone's shopping
options and create a traffic nightmare in
Midtown with big delivery trucks rolling
up and down the main thoroughfare."
It isn't just Stern who is concerned.
Several Midtown residents and business
owners interviewed by the BT flinch
at the idea of a Walmart moving into
Midtown, especially when retailers like
Target, Marshalls, and Ross already sell
discounted goods and groceries.

The original, not fully realized, Midtown Miami plan as envisioned by architect Bernard Zyscovich.

A Target supervisor admits that
her superiors have taken notice of
Walmart's pending arrival. Kerry T.,
assistant manager for Target's Midtown
store (company policy forbids employ-
ees from giving their full names to the
media), says her outlet has among the
highest sales in the nation, but notes
that Target carries the same products as
Walmart. "The team at headquarters is
attuned to the situation," she says.
Walmart has coveted a place within
Midtown since the project broke ground
in 2005. City of Miami officials blocked
the idea then because its design didn't
match their vision of the urban landscape
they hoped to create.
This time, however, Walmart is
planning a new look that would include
street-level "specialty" retail stores and
an overhead parking garage with more
than 600 free parking spaces.
DDR Corp., developer of
the Shops at Midtown Miami, a

645,000-square-foot retail center, is
under contract to sell the 4.6-acre plot of
land to Walmart. A spokesman for the
Ohio-based company says many of its
tenants are actually enthusiastic about
Walmart's arrival.
"The existing tenants of the Shops at
Midtown Miami are encouraged by the
additional activity the Walmart would
bring to the center," writes Marty Rich-
mond, vice president of marketing and
corporate communications, in an e-mail
to the BT "Walmart anchors many DDR
shopping centers across the country, and
their presence always drives demand for
space from other retailers."
But the prospect of a Walmart has
sparked a conflict with one of Midtown's
largest property owners: Midtown Op-
portunities, a group of real estate inves-
tors headed by 27-year-old Alex Vadia.
The investors, whose names have not
been made public, recently purchased 22
acres of land from the Cayres for $61.7

million, including property directly
across Midtown Boulevard from the pro-
posed Walmart, and abutting it along NE
29th Street. (Among the properties now
controlled by Midtown Opportunities
are all those fronting NE 2nd Avenue
from NE 29th Street to NE 32nd Street.)
"It was never the intention to have
a big-box store on Midtown Boulevard,"
says Deborah Samuel, a commercial real
estate broker who not only leases much
of the 110,000 square feet of retail and
office space built among the residential
buildings constructed by the Cayres, but
is also director of operations for Mid-
town Opportunities and the wife Michael
Samuel, one of Midtown Miami's origi-
nal developers.
Jack Cayre, who is negotiating a
future role with Midtown Opportuni-
ties, adds that Midtown's roads can't
accommodate what Walmart wishes

Continued on page 34

April 2012Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

W a






NE :2TH- :E





Map courtesy of Midtown Equities

Like a Rocket
Continued from page 33

to build. "Like anywhere else in the
world," he says, "the property needs to
be used and conform to what is legally
permissible. You need to be sensi-
tive to the neighbors and community
around you."

Walmart's senior director of com-
munity affairs, Steve Restivo, points out
that his store does have support from
its neighbors, particularly Wynwood's
working-class residents desiring a place
where they can obtain fresh, afford-
able groceries and employment close to
where they live. "This will create 300
jobs that will offer competitive wages

and health benefits," he says.
America Medina, spokeswoman
for the Wynwood Historical Homeown-
ers Association, says she has collected
petition signatures from hundreds of
longtime residents who not only want
a Walmart, they demand it. In fact,
Medina asserts, Wynwood residents
would rather have big-box retailers that

will provide them jobs and groceries
than restaurants that won't hire them.
"They said they were going to put busi-
nesses in there like Home Depot and
Walmart," she says of Midtown Miami's
original plan. "Those promises turned
into something else."

Continued on page 36

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com April 2012

- J

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

'. .r-. .^. :
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April 2012 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


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April 2012

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

Like a Rocket
Continued from page 34

Within Midtown itself, the BT could
not find anyone who shared Medina's
sentiments, no one who lamented that
a typical big-box retail mall wasn't
developed instead of what's there now.
Robert Torres, a Midtown resident for
four years and owner of L.A.B. Salon at
the Midtown 4 building, enjoys the sense
of community and pioneering spirit he
shares with his neighbors. "I remember
the first time I came to Midtown, I was
getting an immediate vibe," he says. "I
got a feeling even then that Midtown was
going to be where it is now."

Jeff Morr, CEO of Majestic Properties
and a Midtown resident himself, says
Midtown Miami provides a world that
has been lost in other Miami-Dade devel-
opments. "It is a real, pedestrian, mixed-
use neighborhood," he says. "It's a lifestyle
that South Beach used to have in the 1990s,
and it's right in the middle of everything."
In fact, former residents of Miami
Beach account for a significant percent-
age of Midtown Miami's population.

Michael Feinstein chose Midtown for his office co-op business Buro: "It
is, in my view, a real neighborhood."

"People used to say to me that I have a
South Beach look," says Alex Rodriguez,
a lean and physically fit former Miami

Beach resident who has lived in Midtown
for two years. No%\ they tell me I have a
Midtown look."

Many Midtown residents don't even
have to leave the complex to go to work.
"Most of the businesses are run by people
who live here," Rodriguez says. He's one
of them. Just two months ago he moved
his florist shop, Flower Bar, from Miami
Shores to a retail spot within Midtown 4.
There are also 124 "live-work," loft-style
units marketed to residents who want to
run their business at home.
The live-work-play atmosphere
Midtown Miami offers, plus its abundant
parking, prompted Michael Feinstein
to choose it as the location for his Biiro
Miami, an office co-op where profes-
sionals and small businesses share office
space. "It is, in my view, a real neighbor-
hood," says Feinstein, who subleases
11,000 square feet of office space within
the Midblock building to 50 separate
clients. "I can't think of any other thriv-
ing, mixed-use projects that have been
developed in Miami in recent years."
Midtown Miami's popularity has
sparked quite a bit of real estate activity
in a project that resembled a ghost town
just four years ago. Two months before

Continued on page 38

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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

Like a Rocket
Continued from page 36

Vadia's group closed on its deal with the
Cayres, Gold Krown Financial seized an
opportunity and purchased 538 bank-
owned condo units for $110 million.
Yet in an area where young families
are on the rise, dog-owners are legion,
and walking is encouraged, there isn't
much official green space in Midtown.
A 2.5-acre vacant lot fronting NE 36th
Street currently looks like a passive
park, but is planned to be the site of a
220,000-square-foot movie theater and
hotel complex. After Midtown Oppor-
tunities landscaped it with grass and
solicited suggestions on how to develop
it, online petitions pleaded for a tot lot or
a children's playground.
Midtown's design guidelines actually
require one acre of that land to remain as
open space, but Morr wants to go a step
further. "I think the city has to buy that
land and give everybody a park," he says.
"It could be bought for $10 or $15 million.
The city should write a check and give
Miami a phenomenal park!"
The City of Miami is already invest-
ing $100 million to help pay for Midtown
Miami's development. Those funds are

Midblock along Midtown Boulevard now boasts three top restaurants:
Sugarcane, Mercadito, and Sustain.

coming from property taxes collected
within Midtown Miami over the next 30
years. Miami-Dade County also pledged
to plow $70 million in taxes back into
Midtown during that same time.

To mitigate the vehicular traffic
that Midtown Miami's restaurants and
retail was sure to draw, the city invested
another $1.5 million installing infrastruc-
ture for a trolley system that was to ferry

visitors along the Biscayne Corridor from
downtown to the Upper Eastside. That
trolley system still does not exist. Neither
does the enhanced bus service to Mid-
town that was advocated by city planners.
So as Midtown grows, so will traffic
congestion. Already 36th Street is grid-
locked at peak hours and during special
events such as Art Basel and Second
Saturday gallery walks in Wynwood and
the Design District.
And Midtown will definitely grow.
Today there are about 900 residences
and 755,000 square feet of commercial
space on site. Midtown Miami's zoning
allows for the construction of up to 4500
residential units and 1.3 million square
feet of commercial space. Of the eight
residential structures originally planned,
only three have been built to date.
M diitlo\ i is still in its adoles-
cence," says Bernard Zyscovich, an
architect and planner who formulated
Midtown Miami's urban design. "This
is just the beginning."

Train tracks laid down by Henry
Flagler's Florida East Coast (FEC)
Railway in 1896 enabled a small

Continued on page 40

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Like a Rocket
Continued from page 38
settlement named Fort Dallas to grow
into a bustling metropolis called Miami.
But by the end of the 20th Century, those
tracks represented economic decay.
"Back in 2000, the U.S. Census
Bureau claimed that Miami was the
poorest large city in America," remem-
bers Johnny Winton, who was a Miami
city commissioner from 1999 to 2006
and who played a central role in Mid-
town's creation.
Many of the poorest neighborhoods
in the nation's poorest city were near
those train tracks, particularly between
14th and 79th streets just west of Bis-
cayne Boulevard. City officials called
this region of blight the "FEC Corridor."
Winton, however, saw the region,
which included parts of Omni, Overtown,
Wynwood, Buena Vista, and Little Haiti,
as a diamond in the rough. "As a real estate
guy," he tells the BT, "it was obvious to me
that the location itself was spectacular."
At the urging of Winton and Com-
missioner Art Teele, the city hired
Florida International University's

Located in the Shops at Midtown Miami, Lime Fresh Mexican Grill, a
local chain, is busy day and night.

Metropolitan Center to prepare a master
plan for the FEC Corridor, which was
completed in 2002.
Edward "Ned" Murray, the Metro-
politan Center's associate director, says

it was soon apparent that the fenced-off
rail yard between NE 29th and NE 36th
streets was a huge hindrance to the cor-
ridor's future growth. "It was referred to
as the hole in the doughnut, the triangle

right in the middle of it," he says. "There
were all these trucks coming in and out
of it, there was noise and trucks driving
over sidewalks. The whole site was a
mess. Even the roads in that area were in
pretty bad shape."
The Buena Vista Yard, as it was
known, was created by the FEC Railway
in 1925. "It was a place where all the
freight and passenger trains came in for
servicing," explains Miami historian
and author Seth Bramson. The location
was perfect for the railway, he says, be-
cause the land was mostly uninhabited
and it was just a couple of miles north
of the busy passenger depot located near
downtown's courthouse.
The FEC was planning on turning
the rail yard into a passenger train station
when striking employees shut down the
railway in 1963. The company, which had
just emerged from bankruptcy, could not
afford the demands of baggage handlers
and other employees for higher wages,
Bramson says, so the FEC abolished the
unions, discontinued its passenger line,
and focused on transporting freight.

Continued on page 42


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April 2012

Magnificent and architecturally stunning 1925 2-story Old Spanish home on double lot in Morn-
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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

Like a Rocket
Continued from page 40

The rail yard operation was moved
to Hialeah. By the 1970s, freight opera-
tions along that section of the rail were
sporadic. They ceased altogether in 1992.
(By the end of this year, FEC trains
carrying freight from the Port of Miami
will once again travel along the tracks
bordering Midtown.)
"Eventually the buildings were torn
down and it became a trailer and con-
tainer storage yard," Bramson says, "and
that's what it remained."
"It was a significant detraction from
the neighborhood," Winton says. "It
brought in a lot of traffic and no jobs."
Wynwood in particular was hurting
for employment. Since the 1980s, at least
20,000 manufacturing jobs had disap-
peared from the predominately Puerto
Rican enclave. The trend grew worse in
the 1990s, when free-trade agreements
such as NAFTA encouraged clothing
and fabric manufacturers to move their
work abroad.
One possible solution: Transform the
rail yard into an urban village.

Open-air room with a view at 2 Miami: Initially people stood in line to buy
condos at $400 per square foot.

o even consider such a radi-
cal idea, the county's Port of
Miami, which leased the land
from the FEC, would first have to
agree to move its cargo-container

staging operations. "That was a big
battle," Winton recalls. "They would
never tell us why they had to have
that site. We wanted a copy of the
Port of Miami's master plan so we

could help them find something
better. After months and months of
wrangling, it turned out that the Port
of Miami didn't have a master plan."
Eventually port officials agreed
to move the staging area to Hialeah.
Then the FEC Railway put the 56-acre
property on the market. "There were a
number of individuals who came to the
table to buy the site," Winton says.
Among them was real estate investor
Michael Samuel. "He found the project
and got the Cayres involved," says his
wife Deborah.
The Cayres were involved in plenty
of other things at the time. The family
had a 24 percent interest in New York's
World Trade Center; were converting
warehouses into shopping centers in
Washington, D.C., and New Jersey; and
owned real estate in Miami Beach and
Miami prior to embarking on the Mid-
town Miami project. (When Midtown
Equities' Joseph Cayre was eight years
old, his family moved to Miami Beach,
where he lived until age 20. The family
maintains a home in Aventura.)

Continued on page 44

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Like a Rocket
Continued from page 42

The rail yard looked bad, but the
investors were intrigued by the city's
determination to redevelop the property,
as well as the mixed-use-village concept
created by Zyscovich, who had worked
on FEC Corridor master plan.
"We met at the time with Mayor
Manny Diaz and Commissioner Johnny
Winton," Jack Cayre recalls. "It was
actually a meeting in Bernard Zyscovich's
office. They explained their vision and
what they were thinking for the site. My
father said, 'Listen guys, we have really
big plans. We need to know that we're
working together with the city and that
the government is committed to the best
interests of the people first. Otherwise,
well, we flew in on Jet Blue and it will
cost us very little money to go back home.'
"The mayor stood up from the table,
hugged my father, and said, 'We are
here to show Miami how good, honest
politicians can make a real difference for
people. We want to work with extraordi-
nary developers within this extraordinary
city to do extraordinary things."'

Canadian transplant Kailey Madger loved the Sugarcane happy hour,
then moved in, then opened a business.

In December 2002, Michael Samuel
and the Cayres bought the rail yard for $35
million Within a year, the partners recouped
their purchase price by selling nearly half the

tract for $35 million to Developers Diversi-
fied Realty, now known as DDR Corp.
At the time, DDR had $9 billion in
assets and oversaw 100 million square

feet of retail space in 44 states. "The
site...was one of the last undeveloped
properties near downtown Miami that
had retail potential due to its dense
population and the underserved nature
of retail in the surrounding area," notes
DDR spokesman Marty Richmond.
By 2003 the city had provided
the zoning for development of a mini
city, but with guidelines formulated by
Zyscovich insisting on new roads that
would connect to streets outside the
project, wide sidewalks that would foster
a pedestrian culture, and ground-floor
retail for the residential towers built on
the Cayres-Samuel side of the tract. For
the DDR side, the concept mandated a
wrap-around design for big-box retail
outlets and smaller shops that would be
very different from the strip malls DDR
was used to building.
"Initially their plan was to build two
massive stores surrounded by lots of
surface parking," Zyscovich recounts. "I
told them that I think they need to do
some more research. A much higher and
better use would be a much better return

Continued on page 46

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April 2012



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niglI oiunlimmu
. I -~



April 2012

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F),l ~

Like a Rocket
Continued from page 44

for the neighborhood. They changed
their mind."
But to build the infrastructure
the project required, the developers
needed more help from the govern-
ment. So in 2005 city and county
officials formed a redevelopment
district that would use nearly all the
property taxes collected in Midtown
over three decades to pay off bonds
that financed the construction of
parking garages, water, sewer, roads,
landscaping, and other improvements.
Winton firmly believes the public
investment was worth it. The rail yard
prevented economic development from
taking hold in the Design District and
Wynwood, while Midtown Miami encour-
ages it. Says Winton: "For once we can
look back at government and say, 'Wow,
we did something pretty spectacular.'"
Frank Rollason, former director of
Miami's Community Redevelopment
Agency, agrees that Midtown Miami
is a positive example of what govern-
ment can do, but notes that the city

Chef Richard Hales, owner of Sakaya Kitchen: Back in 2009, "it was just
us and Five Guys and Lime Fresh."

also missed at least one opportunity to
improve the area even more. "It doesn't
take a rocket scientist to figure out that
36th Street needs to be widened," says
Rollason, a Biscayne Times contributor.
N I idtlo\ i should have been mandated to
give up 100 feet of its north-end property
to allow it."

merica Medina, a Wynwood
resident for the past 40 years,
admits Midtown Miami gener-
ally has improved the area, but she's
resentful of the rampant real estate
speculation and the city's aggressive
code-enforcement actions since the
project's approval.

"The fact that Midtown Miami
was going to be placed there, everyone
wanted to come into the area and take a
piece of the pie," she says. "They disre-
garded the actual homeowners and the
residents who lived there, and wanted to
take over the community. But we are still
here." Several promises made by Mid-
town Miami builders were never deliv-
ered to residents, she insists, such as jobs,
free parking, and affordable housing.
Rollason says affordable housing in
Midtown was indeed a condition during
negotiations with the developers. "After
they finally approved the redevelopment
district, I read the document and the re-
quirement for 80 or 90 affordable homes
wasn't in there," he remembers. When
Rollason asked a fellow administrator
what happened to that clause, her reply,
according to him, was: "Oh, they took it
out at the last minute."
Jack Cayre says he doesn't recall
there being any mention of an afford-
able-housing component within Mid-
town, but he does believe the project
has been welcomed by Miamians of all

Continued on page 48

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.comApril 2012

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April 2012

- I



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April 2012

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Like a Rocket
Continued from page 46

economic backgrounds. "Here is a case
where the reality exceeded expectations,"
he declares. "Could anyone have imag-
ined an authentic, thriving community
that started from nothing, to really catch
on and be embraced like it has?"
Midtown Miami wasn't a success
overnight. Both companies broke ground
just when the blazing South Florida real
estate market showed signs of losing its
sizzle. By the summer of 2007, Michael
Samuel sold his interest to his partners.
"I think Michael might have gotten a
little scared by all the conversation about
the housing bust and everyone going
bankrupt and condos coming to market
soon," Joseph Cayre, Midtown Equities'
patriarch, told the Miami Herald in July
2007. Samuel's wife, Deborah, stuck
with the project as a leasing agent.
Joseph Cayre admitted to the Herald
that he considered selling Midtown
Equities' interest in the project in 2006.
"We asked for an enormous amount of
money. If anyone offered it, we would
have taken it," Cayre said at the time.

"But no one did. So we are going to de-
velop it ourselves."
His son, Jack, tells the BT that Mid-
town Miami's condos were initially well
received by buyers. The long lines at
Midtown Miami's sales center for units
that sold for $400 a square foot were
about as long as the lines for the latest
iPhone, Cayre recalls.
Then the bottom dropped out and
Midtown Equities was confronted with
demands from hundreds of buyers for
their money back. "It was certainly a bit
of a rollercoaster," Cayre says. "We had
everything from full-fledged lawsuits to
nasty phone calls, all from people trying
to get their deposits back." By July 2008,
Midtown Miami's condominium towers
were only 40 percent occupied.
Rather than simply sell the units
at a massive discount, the Cayres
found another partner just two months
before Lehman Brothers hemorrhaged.
A Dubai investment fund bought a
95-percent interest in 538 unsold condo
units for $240 million. The units, which
were managed by Midtown Equities,
were then rented for between $1250 and
$2900 a month.

Midtown didn't have a restrictive pet
policy, either, which was unusual and
welcome. As an added bonus, they threw
in a month of free rent. Even better, for a
period of time, you could apply your first
year's rent toward a down payment to buy.
By 2010, 90 percent of the units were
occupied and rental prices were on the rise.
The upswing came too late for the
Dubai partners. Saddled with $2.4 bil-
lion in debt worldwide, the investment
fund surrendered its units to HSBC Bank
in July 2011. Three months later, Krown
Gold Financial, a company headed by M.
Ronald Krongold, pounced on the oppor-
tunity to buy the units at auction for just
$183 per square foot.
"It's one of the hottest areas in
the whole United States, as far as I'm
concerned," says Krongold, a Miami de-
veloper for 50 years. He raves to the BT
about the expansive views from condo
balconies, the prospect of luxury retail-
ers colonizing the Design District, and
Midtown's unique characteristics.
Krongold has already retained
Edgardo Defortuna, president of Fortune
International Realty, to sell at least some
of the units on the open market for $300

per square foot. The sales campaign will
start with the 2 Midtown condo tower,
where only 62 of the units are rented.
The rest of the 256 units in the 30-story
building are owner-occupied. "It's really
appropriate to sell out that building and
turn it over to a condo association," De-
fortuna says.
Depending on the market's reaction,
Krongold says he may sell the other 477
units he controls, or keep them as rentals:
"Right now the rental market is very strong."

Kailey Magder, a Toronto-native
and former fashion consultant,
moved from Surfside to Mid-
town last summer, soon after falling in
love with the happy hour at Sugarcane
Raw Bar Grill, a resto-lounge in the
Midblock building that boasts a luxuri-
ously landscaped outdoor seating area. A
few months later she opened Blo: Blow
Dry Bar in the 4 Midtown tower, a salon
franchise specializing in blow dry and
wash treatments.
"I love it here," she exclaims, al-
though she admits the ambiance is not

Continued on page 50


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April 2012

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Like a Rocket
Continued from page 48

quite the same in the DDR portion of
Midtown. "It has a different feel on this
side of Midtown than on that side."
That's a feeling Deborah Samuel
hopes to continue cultivating. While she
appreciates the crowds large retail opera-
tions attract to the Shops at Midtown,
Samuel strives to maintain a distinctive
sensibility in the Midtown Equities
and Midtown Opportunities side of the
development. She even looks forward to
the day when the 2.5-acre grass lot front-
ing NE 36th Street is developed, thus
shielding Target from the view of diners
at chic 2 Midtown eateries such as The
Cheese Course and Salumeria 104.
The 2 Midtown building is also
flanked by Midtown Opportunities-owned
vacant parcels. "The original vision was
always to develop it," Samuel says. "It was
always meant to be a buffer between the
big-box retail and the residential towers."
Whereas the Shops at Midtown
includes corporate chains such as Five
Guys Burgers and Fries, Foot Locker,
Super Cuts, and the Sports Authority,
Samuel and Cayre sought out indepen-
dently owned businesses that weren't
likely to be seen at South Florida shop-
ping malls. "We were particular with
our tenants and wanted things that were
different and unique," Samuel says. "We
didn't want generic restaurants that
could be found over and over again."
To help attract such businesses,
Samuel and the Cayres pursued restau-
rateurs from New York and South Beach
and encouraged them to open on their
side of Midtown. "We're here by invita-
tion," confirms Yves Stoopen, general
manager and part-owner of Mercadito, an
upscale Mexican restaurant in Midblock
with locations in New York and Chicago.
In truth, DDR's retail space isn't
reserved exclusively for corporate chains.
Sharon Dresser, co-founder of High
Street Retail USA, has been leasing
space for DDR since 2008. She points
out that there are plenty of unique busi-
nesses within the Shops at Midtown,
among them Ricochet, a sleek lounge
run by South Beach nightlife veterans
Tommy Pooch and Alan Roth; and Wine
Vault, a lavishly appointed wine and
tapas bar developed by Michael Shapira,
which features a transparent elevator that
transports patrons to an upstairs salon.
In the north block, not far from Target,
is Sakaya Kitchen, a Korean-influenced

casual restaurant owned by the respected
chef Richard Hales, who says there were
hardly any restaurants in Midtown when
heopenedin2009. Ii \\a.justus and
Five Guys and Lime Fresh," recalls Hales,
who took over the lease of the defunct
Captain Joe's Seafood.
Hales admits that DDR had an awk-
ward time dealing with him at first: "They
were used to a certain type of tenant, and
I was going day-to-day, by the seat of my
pants. They were used to something more
formal. I caused them as many headaches
as they caused me. But they've been good
landlords. I can't complain."
Jonathan Lazar can, and does,
complain, though not about DDR. His
landlord is Midtown Equities. Three years
ago the former venture-capital consultant
moved from New York to Midtown seek-
ing a change. Then, 16 months ago, after
being promised that a luxe movie theater
would be built on one of his landlord's
nearby empty lots, he opened Sustain, a
stylish restaurant clustered with Sugar-
cane and Mercadito at Midblock.
When the Cayres sold their vacant
parcels to Midtown Opportunities, Lazar
lost any confidence that a movie theater
or anything else would be built anytime
soon. "They're going to wait until the
next development boom," he ventures.
When he comes around to the subject
on everyone's mind at the moment a
new neighbor named Walmart Lazar
grimaces. N diloi\ n had a chance to be
an urban community with cool people
doing cool things," he says. No\\ it's just
the same thing generic garbage."
Sakaya Kitchen's Hales admits
he doesn't like the idea of a Walmart
coming into Midtown, but not because
he's afraid it will put him out of business.
"I don't think Walmart is going to offer
an alternative to dining at Sakaya," he
says. Hales simply disdains any institu-
tion that sponsors the mass production
of manufactured goods at very low
costs: "They say, 'We're here to help the
community by providing an affordable
product.' But in order to provide those
products, they're raping someplace else."
Alex Rodriguez of Flower Bar
believes that, rather than fight Walmart,
Midtown Miami should seek a compro-
mise: "You can't stop progress, but you
can work with it."
Mercadito's Yves Stoopen is also
willing to keep an open mind: "If it will
bring more people, then fine."

Feedback: letters(abiscaynetimes.com

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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


There's a Reason They Call

It Boulevard of Dreams
A couple of guys from Argentina have some very big plans

By Erik Bojnansky
BT Senior Writer
wo Argentine real estate profession-
als, fresh on the Biscayne Corridor
development scene, are preparing
to build in the MiMo Historic District and
Edgewater area. Their plans include MiMo
Center, a retail project anchored by a Miss
Yip restaurant and decorated with whimsi-
cal art, buying and redeveloping the iconic
Vagabond Motel, and building at least one
loft-style condo with a cocktail lounge on
the ground floor.
But there are plenty of obstacles that
could derail the goals of developers Javier
Rabinovich and Mariano Karner. One
of them is the government. Last month

they were informed that, on top of paying
impact and permit fees to the county and
the City of Miami for the right to build the
35-foot tall MiMo Center, to be located at
6401 Biscayne Blvd., they will have to pay
at least $200,000 for the installation of a
new 12-inch water line.
Karner says the surprise require-
ment from the Miami-Dade Water and
Sewer Department (WASD) has increased
expenses for a project that already costs
more than $2.5 million. "We don't know
yet what the impact of this is, but we're
planning everything forward," he says.
Nancy Liebman, president of the
MiMo Biscayne Association, an organiza-
tion that seeks to increase development
within MiMo Biscayne Boulevard Historic

An artist's rendering of Javier Rabinovich and Mariano Karner's first-
ever project.

District, says it would be a shame if the
project died because of such an obligation.
"The historic district has a lot of impedi-
ments to it, including the major impedi-
ment of not being able to build higher than
35 feet," complains Liebman, referring to
the height limit in place for the district, lo-
cated between 50th and 77th streets along
Biscayne Boulevard. "Not having water
pipes in place is a travesty for the future
development in the historic MiMo area."
Adriana Lamar, chief of WASD's
public and governmental affairs division,
explains that there are 7700 miles of water

pipes in Miami-Dade County, but infra-
structure is added on an "as needed" basis
and paid for by the developer of a new
project instead of "placing the additional
financial burden onto current WASD
"In regards to [the MiMo Center], the
existing water pipe in service is a six-inch
pipe," explains Lamar in a written state-
ment to the BT "This pipe would not
support the code requirements of the new
development, especially in regard to fire

Continued on page 56

Speeding Drivers and |

Falling Home Prices
One solution to both problems? It's a question being asked in El Portal -

By Jos6 P6rez
Special to the BT

As afternoon shadows lengthened
with the setting sun in the hamlet
of El Portal this past February 22,
Claudia Hessel was out for a leisurely stroll
with her two children and their two dogs.
Then she heard an approaching automobile.
"The car came from my back," she
wrote in an e-mail later that evening,
"and I could see the car coming at a
high speed."
Hessel sent that message to El Portal
village officials and others. In it she

issued a call for the village and Miami-
Dade County to install "speed humps
or any other residential traffic-control
device...for our own protection."
Hers was not the first plea for "traf-
fic calming" measures in tiny El Portal,
population 2325. According to village
manager Jason Walker, complaints date
back to 2007. That's when he wrote to
Muhammed Hasan, chief of Miami-
Dade County's traffic engineering
division, requesting "a traffic study to
determine if speed bumps [were] war-
ranted." The county, which has respon-
sibility for most local roadways, agreed

Claudia Hessel and brood in leafy, serene Sherwood Forest.

to conduct a study.
The letter to Hasan was prompted by
response requests from residents of El
Portal's idyllic Sherwood Forest neigh-
borhood to address mounting problems

with drivers speeding through their quiet
streets in order to dodge Miami's ubiqui-
tous traffic snarls.

Continued on page 54

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.comApril 2012

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

The Idea: Millions and

Millions of Dollars for


The reality: No new parks and no clear record of dollars collected
or spent

By Erik Bojnansky
BT Senior Writer

even years ago, for the first time
in two decades, the City of Miami
hiked impact fees charged to resi-
dential developers. The largest portion of
those fees was reserved for public parks,
a scarce commodity in Miami.
Now, as Miami officials prepare to
examine how it will charge impact fees
in the future, a coalition of neighbor-
hood groups is arguing that those funds
should be used to buy more park land for
the Magic City.
"There are studies that show how
parks are economic generators, that
companies looking for locations to open
offices consider parks in the list of assets
of a community," says Steve Hagen,
a member of Miami Neighborhoods
United and a longtime parks advocate.
"So in fact parks do create jobs."
Hagen, a Belle Meade resident who
is widely known for being a prolific e-
mailer, will be moving to Atlanta within
the next three years. But before he leaves,
he's making a final push. Toward that
end, he persuaded MNU to pass a resolu-
tion this past January demanding that
city officials increase Miami's parks-
to-people ratio and that they use impact
fees to accomplish that.
Adam Dunshee, president of MNU,
says development projects such as the
proposed $1 billion Brickell CitiCentre
can provide enough revenue for the city
buy more land for parks. "With the swell
of new building, we wanted to make sure
that impact fees of the past have been
re-evaluated," he says.
Between 2004 and 2010, when more
than 35,000 units were added to Mi-
ami's housing stock, the city collected
more than $27 million in impact fees
from builders, yet Hagen says there's no

evidence any of this money was used to
obtain new park land.
Miami ranks near the bottom nation-
ally for the amount of park space it has
available for its residents. According to a
2010 survey by the Trust for Public Land,
the city had only 2.8 acres of park per
1000 residents. By contrast, the national
average for densely populated cities,
those with more than ten people per acre,
was 6.5 acres per 1000 residents in 2010.
This parks deficit will only increase
as Miami's population grows. "We're
going to add another 50,000 people if
this development continues," says Hagen,
"and if we don't add park land at the same
rate, it is going to get worse and worse
and worse. A growing population cannot
tolerate that."
Two months ago the city hired the
firm Tischler-
Bise to
analyze how The city did not
Miami charges detailing impac
impact fees and expenditure;
to builders supposedly spent
in the city. veri
It's the same
consulting and
planning group that recommended revis-
ing the city's fees back in 2005. Mayor
TomBs Regalado believes the city will
likely raise those fees. "We still need to
get the report to the city commission,"
Regalado says, "but I think the report is
going to tell us to charge more. It only
makes sense."
Actually it doesn't make sense, ac-
cording to Truly Burton, executive vice
president of the Builders Council of
South Florida. She points out that the
real estate market is still quite fragile,
and increasing fees charged to develop-
ers will only hike the cost of new homes,
by as much as $6000. "Many cities and
counties around the state have either

January 2007: Miami's building boom should have generated millions in
impact fees for public parks.

temporarily waived impac
them to encourage some e
ity," she says.
Since the 1970s, cities
throughout Florida have ch
ers impact fees in order to
structure such as roads, par
public buildings, and water
would service the new proj
The City of Miami did
charging developers impac
the 1980s. Under that old s
family-home builders did



provide records
fee collections
so the millions
i parks cannot be

of seven cents was design
Commercial builders paid
of $1.12 per square foot, of
cents went to parks.
By January 2006, Mia
its impact-fee system, which
place today. Residential de
pay flat rates. Builders of s
homes are charged $8100 p
while low-rise developers
mobile homes, and building
than nine units) are paying
unit. High-rise builders pa
unit. Commercial builders
lowered and parks get non
Commercial projects a
parks fared well under the

t fees or cut Between 84 percent and 97 percent of all
economic activ- money collected would be dedicated to
parks: $6800 per house, $6000 per low-
and counties rise unit, and $4000 per high-rise unit.
arged develop- However, commercial builders were
pay for infra- exempted from paying park impact fees.
rks, schools, The new system was supposed to
and sewer that have been reviewed every three years,
ects. but that didn't happen in late 2008 as it
n't begin should have. Regalado partially blames
;t fees until his predecessor, Manny Diaz, for that
system, single- failure, but he also admits that circum-
lot have to stances arising after his own election
*ay any fees. as mayor in 2009 further delayed the
Apartment review. "We had bigger fish to fry," he
and condo says. "We had to go after the unions,
builders paid close the deficit, and get into fights with
an average the police chief."
of 83 cents This past September, the city's
per square Office of Zoning was prepared to recom-
foot, of which mend impact-fee increases, but with
an average the added money going only to police,
ted for parks. fire, and infrastructure needs not to
an average parks. Barnaby Min, Miami's director of
which seven zoning, says fee increases for parks were
not proposed at the time because the
mi had revised city's rates were already among the high-
ch remains in est in Florida. The proposed fee hikes,
velopers now however, were yanked at the request of
ingle-family city attorney Julie Bru, who felt they
)er house, needed to be studied by a consultant.
(townhomes, It isn't clear how much money col-
gs with fewer elected from developers during the last
$7100 per building boom was actually funneled
y $4100 per to parks. That's because the city hasn't
had their rates segregated impact fees by type, as re-
e of it. quired by law, since 2006, according to

side, public
new system.

Continued on page 59

April 2012 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


El Portal
Continued from page 52

In the past, it wasn't particularly dif-
ficult for cities to have speed bumps or
other traffic-calming devices installed as
safety measures. But several years ago,
Miami-Dade County officials, alarmed
at the rising number of street closures
throughout the county, decided that
municipalities should rigorously justify
such moves.
Hasan got back to Walker in January
2008 and explained the testing that the
county's Public Works Department had
completed. Not all of the streets studied
were in Sherwood Forest. They included
NW 2nd Avenue between NW 86th and
91st streets, NW 86th Street between N.
Miami Avenue and NW 3rd Avenue, and
in Sherwood Forest, NE 85th and 86th
streets from NE 2nd Avenue to NE 4th
Avenue Road, near El Portal Village Hall
(see map).
For concerned residents, the re-
sults were not encouraging. None of
the streets met the "minimum criteria
established for the installation of speed
humps." In short, there just were not

NE 86th St


enough cars going by (tortoise or hare) to
merit any measures.
However, Hasan gave El Portal a
second shot: If the village hired a repu-
table company to conduct a private traffic
study, and if that study bolstered asser-
tions that traffic in Sherwood Forest had
become a hazard, then the county would
allow the installation of speed bumps.

sth 8St



So El Portal did just that, hiring the
Coral Gables firm of David Plummer
and Associates for what was, in effect,
a second opinion. In November 2009,
Plummer and Associates delivered its
study. The results? "None of the residen-
tial streets studied meets the threshold"
required by the county to even consider
traffic-calming devices.


That verdict was not only dishearten-
ing to those advocating for speed bumps,
it was quite surprising at least to one
longtime resident, Auta Davis.
A homeowner in Sherwood Forest
since the late 1980s, Davis tells the BT
that, during the study, some neighbors

Continued on page 58

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April 2012

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April 2012

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Continued from page 52

flow. That is why a 12-inch pipe is required."
WASD is allowing the MiMo Center's
developers to install the water line along
NE 64th Street instead of Biscayne Boule-
vard, "which would have been more costly,"
Lamar writes, adding, "The developer
will be able to recoup costs if neighboring
properties redevelop and connect to this
pipe within a 12-year period."
Rabinovich and Karer bought the
15,000-square-foot vacant lot from a sub-
sidiary controlled by Midtown Miami devel-
opers Joseph Cayre and Michael Samuel in
May 2011 for $300,000. Cayre and Samuel
bought the parcel less than a year earlier
for $199,100. Last year, the Miami-Dade
County Property Appraiser Office assessed
the land's value at $524,125.
Rabinovich still hopes to break ground
on the MiMo Center project within 60
to 90 days. After the water-pipe issue is
resolved, three houses at the rear of the site
will be demolished and construction will
commence on the 8000-square-foot build-
ing, which will be brightly painted and
include figures by local pop artist Stephen

Gamson. Once completed, the center
will serve as the third location for a Miss
Yip restaurant, a Chinese cafe owned by
Rabinovich. There will also be seven retail
spaces ranging from 900 to 1375 square
feet that will be leased by Brightway
Properties, an Aventura-based real estate
company where Karer works as an agent.
"We hope the area is going to grow later
on," Rabinovich optimistically says. "We're
going to build a nice building, a nice land-
mark for all the people to come and see."
This is the first building Rabinovich
and Karner have developed. Since moving
to the United States in 1999, Rabinovich
has worked in the hospitality, telecom-
munications, and real estate industries. He
now runs the 900 Biscayne Retail Center,
where the second Miss Yip operates, and
owns Buck 15, a South Beach lounge
located at 435 Lincoln Road.
Karner was an investment banker
at Banco Santander and Lehman Broth-
ers and says he has worked in real estate
in the United States, Argentina, and
Spain for more than ten years. They both
manage Priv6 Development Opportu-
nities, a real estate development fund
that "acquires land for development of

commercial and residential projects," ac-
cording to a company bio.
No\\ is the time to take advantage of
the market and try to [develop] as many
properties as you can, if you have the
chance," Rabinovich says about Miami's
Biscayne Corridor. "There are nice proper-
ties that are at lower prices than when
everybody was rushing in."
Rabinovich says he and his partner
are busy assembling land in Edgewater for
future projects, including an eight-story,
loft-style condo called 24/7 that will feature
a Buck 15 nightclub on the ground floor.
They also are interested in buying
the Vagabond, the 1953 motel located at
7301 Biscayne Blvd. that is considered a
landmark example of the post-war, Miami
Modern (MiMo) architectural style.
The motel was abandoned in 2009,
after developer Eric Silverman ended his
attempt to renovate the structure. Rabinov-
ich says he and his partner are interested
in buying the motel and turning it into an
"entertainment destination," with restau-
rants and a few motel rooms, but the water-
pipe incident has made them wary.
Before proceeding further, Rabi-
novich wants to make sure the necessary

infrastructure exists for the motel and that
the city supports their proposal. A plan to
redevelop the property may be submitted
to the city as early as next month, he adds.
If there is a serious offer being made for
the Vagabond, David Lin is unaware of it.
Lin, who foreclosed on the property in 2010,
says there was a $2 million offer from a ho-
telier to buy the Vagabond last fall, but the
deal fell apart. "The group gave up because
the city couldn't give a clear response about
the use," he claims. Since then Lin says he
hasn't received any offers.
Don Phillip, a Keyes commercial
broker marketing the motel, says "multiple
people" have looked at the Vagabond, but
can't recall if Rabinovich and Karner were
among them. "Time will tell who wins the
race," he says.
Time will also tell if Rabinovich and
Karner will be successful in their develop-
ment quests. Experts say it's still a tough
market, one in which even experienced
developers are having a hard time. "This
is not an environment for newbies," quips
one industry consultant. Nic\ blc.s can't
get a loan."

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1 1 .r- ,-i I- I l- 1 1 ._ : i .j i I-, h- 1 .10 11 l _.

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April 2012

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April 2012

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El Portal
Continued from page 54
who favored traffic-calming measures
drove their vehicles up and down the
streets in an effort to spike the numbers,
apparently to no avail.
Despite the two studies, Walker sought
to help Sherwood Forest residents feel
safer while walking their streets. Village
police set up speed traps, but came back
empty-handed after several hours spent
watching minimal automobile traffic.
The speed limit in the area was
lowered to 20 miles per hour. The vil-
lage anted up a few thousand dollars to
pay for a radar trailer that flashed the
posted limit and actual speed of drivers
approaching it. There was even talk of
adding sidewalks where none now exist.
Walker also continued to press Miami-
Dade County for permission to install at
least a few speed bumps. However, not
only were the statistics stacked against him,
so were recent studies that raised serious
questions about speed bumps.
For example, in a 2006 memoran-
dum to the county commission, county
manager George Burgess wrote that

speed bumps "reduce the speed of emer-
gency vehicle response times substantial-
ly." This weighed heavily on the minds
of Auta Davis and her husband. They are
retired, and she expressed fears about
what delayed response time could mean
if something bad happened to them a
house fire or worse.
Burgess also cited data that showed
an unexpected and significant rise in
accidents after the installation of speed
bumps. In addition, other studies noted
damage to cars that frequently have to
cross over the bumps.
Warnings aside, Walker's work fi-
nally paid off when, just seven days after
Claudia Hessel circulated her e-mail
complaint, he received word that the
county had relented and agreed to allow
El Portal to install speed bumps after all.
The elation was short-lived. No
sooner had the village manager spread
the good news than some Sherwood
Forest residents declared that speed
bumps alone would not suffice. One of
them, Hessel herself, now says flatly:
"They won't work."
So what would work? For Hessel,
the answer is clear: Close off access

to Sherwood Forest from busy NE 2nd
Avenue erect a permanent barricade
at the avenue's intersection with NE
86th Street.
If Walker or anyone else at El Portal
Village Hall is frustrated by this sudden
escalation of the situation, no one is
showing it. "The issue is speeding,"
Walker says coolly. "We think that we
have adequately addressed that issue."
Auta Davis would seem to agree. She
says she spends most of her days outside
in her garden, in full view of all who
come and go along the streets at the center
of this unexpected controversy. Though
she dislikes speeders, she welcomes
visitors, and she is bothered by what she
calls a lack of "civic mindedness" on
the part of a few relatively recent arriv-
als to the community, and by their sense
of "entitlement." Recalling the charms of
Sherwood Forest that compelled her and
her husband to buy a house here almost a
quarter-century ago, Davis says she wants
to "let everybody enjoy it."
Perhaps something more than entitle-
ment, or even a desire for safe streets,
is at work in some parts of Sherwood
Forest. Hessel, for one, broaches that

possibility when she explains to the BT
that her home has lost a great deal of
value over the past few years, having
dropped from approximately $500,000
to about half that amount.
Could street closures provide com-
pound benefits, enhancing both safety
and property values?
According to Susan Truzenberg, a
real estate broker, the answer is unequiv-
ocal: Yes.
Truzenberg works in Coconut Grove,
a community whose lush tropical ambi-
ance and narrow, winding streets are
similar Sherwood Forest. She does not
live in El Portal and has no commercial
interests there. Still, it's easy for her to
answer the street-closure question. On a
scale of one to ten, she says, the benefit to
housing prices would be at least an eight.
With hard-won speed bumps in
El Portal still a work in progress, it's
unclear when, or if, village officials will
tackle the issue of street closures as a
means to boost housing values. It's even
less clear whether the county would
entertain such an idea.

Feedback: letters@tbiscaynetimes.com






Boutique practice in a

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Margaret Okonkwo, MD, FAAP
4112 Northeast 1 st Ave, Miami FL 33137
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Im - 8U )

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April 2012


Continued from page 53

a September 2010 report by then-auditor
general Victor Igwe. The report also
found 33 instances in which developers
were undercharged a total of $2.2 million
in impact and administrative fees.
Five months later, in February 2011,
Igwe published another report reveal-
ing that $26.3 million meant for capital
projects, including $8.2 million in
impact fees, were illegally transferred to
the general fund between 2007 and 2009
in order to increase the city's reserves.
(Igwe was later forced out of his job and
has since filed a whistleblower lawsuit
against the city.)
The city's own reports from 2005
to 2011 show that millions of dollars in
impact fees were earmarked for the reno-
vation or expansion of existing park facili-
ties. Allocated amounts included $2 mil-
lion for Bicentennial Park, $1 million for
Curtis Park, $940,000 for Little Haiti Park
cost overruns, $810,000 for Jos6 Marti
Park's gym renovation and parking lots,
$800,000 for Grapeland Park's cost over-
runs, and allotments of approximately

$500,000 each for Margaret
Pace Park, Morningside Park,
and Hadley Park.
Despite repeated requests,
however, the city did not pro-
vide the BT with records from
over the past decade detailing
impact-fee collections and -
expenditures, so the millions
supposedly spent on parks
cannot be verified.
One reason impact fees
have not been used to obtain
new park land is that the -
system in place since 2006 has Parks advocate Steve Hagen: "In fact parks do
mandated that only citywide create jobs."

regional parks more than three
acres in size, not smaller neighborhood
parks, could receive such funds. But
even the city's consultant admits that
smaller parks can be attractive assets.
T\ o-ac ic parks can still hold a small
soccer field," says L. Carson Bise, presi-
dent of TischlerBise.
Yet another reason impact fees
haven't been used to buy more park land,
even with a three-acre minimum: budget
cuts. During the city's parks advisory
board meeting this past January, Parks

and Recreation Department director
Ernest Burkeen said his office budget
had been cut by $8 million, "and we are
struggling to maintain what we have."
Less than two months after that
meeting, Burkeen, who has worked in
the city's parks department for close to
13 years, was fired with no explanation.
"The city manager was not happy with
his performance," says Mayor TomBs
Regalado. "He wanted the department to
go in another direction."

What that direction
That might be, city manager
Johnny Martinez won't say.
S"I don't want to go into it, I
Really don't," he tells the BT.
ca Burkeen could not be
reached for comment. He
was fired on the same day
that code-enforcement chief
Sergio Gaudix resigned. Mar-
tinez says Gaudix's sudden
departure stemmed from the
city's desire for "more com-
pliance and less enforcement"
on code issues.
Regalado explains that Marti-
nez is in the midst of doing in-depth
reviews of all city departments. "We've had
complaints about parks," he says. "We need
to take parks to the next level."
The mayor adds that he also plans
to launch a new initiative. "We have
been talking with banks and foreclosed
properties," he says. "We will be trying
to get banks to give foreclosed properties
to the City of Miami or nonprofits. The
land might be used as mini parks."

Feedback: letters@tbiscaynetimes.com

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April 2012

Commentary: LETTERS

S a Y

2011201 C r S

Continued from page 21

of their dog parks, either.
Why not putting one in Morningside
Park? Midtown? Or the Design District?
Is something being done about this?
Please help!
Nicole Dorsey
Buena Vista East

More For the Dogs
Lisa Hartman, thank you for your
great article "Don't Worry, He's Friend-
ly!" You painted such an accurate picture
of my dog-walking experience that it's
almost eerie down to the phrases
people use. People need to realize that
just like they don't go up to greet every
stranger they encounter on the street,
dogs shouldn't do so either.
I have a very friendly dachshund
who is always getting slobbered on
or growled at by larger dogs. So he
becomes submissive and rolls on the
ground and then I have to deal with a
dirty wiener covered in dog spit.
Well, you get the picture.
Oscar Lopez
Belle Meade

Keep Them on That Leash
This story "Don't Worry, He's Friend-
ly!" hits home on so many levels. Not long
ago a friend and I were walking around
Bay Wood Park on NE 69th Street and the
bay, enjoying a beautiful sunset and our
Starbucks beverages, when a dog came
charging, invading our personal space.
I had no idea that my friend was ter-
rified of dogs until she clutched my arm
for dear life.
I asked the owner in a polite tone if
she could call her dog, and I explained
that my friend was fearful of dogs and
we just wanted to enjoy our evening.

To my surprise the young woman
looked at us and said, "This is a dog-friendly
park" and that we had to deal with it.
Needless to say, I had a few color-
ful words for her. She got the picture and
moved on. The next day I went to the local
NET office and filed a complaint, explain-
ing what took place without leaving out my
colorful language. They told me that I was
not the first to complain and assured me
that they would investigate immediately.
I am happy to report that now when
I walk to the park, I do not have to deal
with other people's unrestrained pets.
I am a dog lover. However, until I
know the temperament of the pooch, I
am not totally comfortable. I hope some-
one from the "MDIF" gang reads this
article and spreads the word.
Jay Hall
Upper Eastside

Turn Off, Tune Out, Paddle Away
I enjoyed every word of Tristram
Korten's cover story "Trapped in a
Tech Web That Won't Let Go? Answer:
Unplug, Float, Exhale" (February 2012).
Kayaks are not my first love, but sailing,
canoeing, and camping have always been
memorable times for me.
Yes, escaping the busyness of every-
day life is wonderful.
Thank you, Mr. Korten.
Peggy Seeley
Miami Shores

The Column Is the Real Crime
Hint: You won't find the answer in
the BT, the Miami Herald, or the Sun
Arnold Markowitz
Miami Shores

Issues Beyond the Grave
For sure, BT contributor Jim W
Harper's reflections on the tensions

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

between afterlife rights and environmen-
tal responsibilities ("My Big Fat Green
Funeral," February 2012) give us readers
much food for thought. Just for that it is
a welcome, regrettably infrequent essay,
and a source of concern about the com-
plexities of human nature.
The writer's comments certainly
clash with my religious faith, which
values one's body as the living place of
the immortal soul, but I am persuaded
that faith is stronger for being more
intensely challenged, in a context of
reasonable debate. A Spanish philosopher,
Miguel de Unamuno, wrote: "One should
say things of which we hear one should
not talk about."
The need to respect the environ-
ment is certainly present in all spheres of
human behavior, not excluding the ones
of impact in the world after our demise.
However, I find it difficult to stress the
importance of practices such as crema-
tion abhorred by a large proportion of
persons the world over or other more
grotesque practices identified in Mr.
Harper's article.
I think such concerns occupy a
much less urgent place than many
others that should be addressed first,
without disturbing the peace of the
tomb. Old Romans, who certainly
knew how to create solid societies,
considered family as a vital part of
religion, and the Penates were gods or
god-like creatures to which there were
altars in each home.
I would like to read other contribu-
tions from readers on this issue.
Maria Catalina Bosch

Swim Right Up and Take a Look
When I read "My Big Fat Green
Funeral," all I could think of is how odd
the whole thing was.

I understand how others might be
okay with it, but to me personally, I do
not wish my remains to be open for the
public to gawk at, such as those in the
artificial reef off Key Biscayne.
As for the green aspect of a funeral,
it shouldn't matter whether or not a
person's choice of burial is environmen-
tally friendly or not, because in the end
the choices about how the deceased are
buried are made by their family and their
traditions, not by how much it is going to
affect the earth.
Alanna Hale
North Miami

It's the Boats That Done It
Please tell Jim W. Harper that most of
the erosion of the spoil islands ("Island
Adventures on Biscayne Bay," February
2012) is caused by boat traffic. Boats
make waves even when there is no wind,
and around Haulover Inlet, the boat-gen-
erated waves are persistent and frequent
every day.
Wind coming through the inlet in
the form of waves is rare, as we only
get easterly winds a few days a year.
The reason DERM put boulders (called
rip-rap) on the beaches of these islands
was to protect them from boat-generated
waves and waves reflected off of ad-
jacent sea walls. Unfortunately, most
power-boat users haven't a clue as to the
damage they do to eroding shorelines.
In days before there were "boaters"
on Biscayne Bay, the bay could actually
become glass-calm for long periods of
time when the wind was down. That
doesn't happen now.
Want to know why you can't see the
bottom often? Guess.
Pete Harlem
Southeast Environmental
Research Center
Florida International University

Why Deal With Amateurs,

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April 2012

Neighborhood Correspondents: MIAMI SHORES

Educated Hands for

Tensed-Up Bodies
Miami's award-winning massage school will rub you the right way

By Jen Karetnick
BT Contributor

Back in the day when I was a
runner, I had a few constants: I'd
always wear a headset for music;
I'd always sprint the last few blocks; and
on my last leg, I'd always pass my neigh-
bor Ed Wilson, who'd give me a jaunty
wave hello.
I found this last element reassuring
because, as a work-at-home writer and
mom, I'd sneak in my miles between
deadlines and baby naps, which meant
that my schedule was as erratic as they
came. But Ed was always there, out in
front weeding his garden, hanging bird

feeders, or just tinkering.
One day he caught me, headset
around my neck, plodding slowly toward
home. "Are you okay?" he asked. I shook
my head: "Migraine coming on."
I was feeling the warning signs: pain
jarring my left cheekbone and nostril,
a haze around my left eye. I had only
a limited amount of time to get to my
medicine cabinet. But to jog home on a
budding migraine was unthinkable.
"C'mere," he gestured. "I'll help you
with that."
Ed is a reflexologist, but I'm a
skeptic. The only thing I wanted to press
between pressure points at that moment
was an Imitrex. Yet I allowed him to

grasp the fleshy part of my thumb and
show me how to turn off a migraine
naturally, which did work as long as
I kept digging into my thumb. The pill
was less awkward in the end.
However, I was impressed enough
that I asked Ed's advice when the Achil-
les' tendon problems that had plagued
me since high school resurfaced. It was
becoming so painful to run even to
walk, with bubbles forming on the backs
of my ankles I feared I would soon
have to give it up. And running was the

only thing that kept me sane in those
days. Well, that and wine.
Ed's hints kept me logging miles for
another year, when it became clear I'd
have to have surgery or do something
different cycling, maybe. Then I took
on a full-time teaching job and my daily
outdoor workouts became a thing of the
past. (I now opt for no-impact, high-
intensity workouts with a trainer.)
Of course, I still catch a glimpse of
Ed now and then. He chugs past me in
his trusty white car, usually when I'm

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.comApril 2012

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

just home from work, still in stilettos
and clotheslined by three different leash-
es with three different sizes of straining,
panting canines attached to the ends,
just before I pick up the kids and head
upstairs to write. It's at these moments
that he yells, "Bring me your feet!"
Ed isn't kidding. He really does want
me to bring him my poor, maligned
tootsies. Not only because high heels are
modern-day torture devices, but so that
I can see the gorgeous new space out of
which he works: The Educating Hands
School of Massage, owned and directed
by his wife, Iris Burman.
Funny enough, even though I don't
see Ed much in the old neighborhood
anymore, I do see him in my new one.
Educating Hands is on Biscayne Boule-
vard, just across the street from Miami
Arts Charter School, where I teach.
The building, in its current incar-
nation, is now about a year old. For 40
years before that, it had been a plastic
surgery and gynecology center; imos-ld
operating rooms [more] than anything
else," Iris notes. When she took it
over in 2009, it had been completely
stripped of anything valuable, including

air-conditioning units and all metal. It
also had very few windows. "It was a
blank box," she says.
Iris spent the whole of 2010 design-
ing and arranging the interior into three
practical classrooms, two lecture rooms,
six classrooms, a lending library, a stu-
dent lounge, and three clinical spaces for
seasoned therapists to schedule appoint-
ments with clients.
Today eight staff members and 24
faculty train 60 students to become
licensed massage therapists in as little
as six months (if they go full-time, five
days per week) or 11 months (if they go
at night, three times per week).
What's more, just before opening,
the school won the Massage School
Makeover, sponsored by Massage Ware-
house, Massage Today, and the World
Massage Conference, and was awarded
massage tables, skeletons, PowerPoint
programs, computers, books, and other
welcome goodies a total of $70,000
worth of state-of-the-art lab and clinical
equipment and educational materials.
In addition, Iris is finally able to
feature her textbook on massage, Touch-
Abilities: Essential Connections, which she

co-authored. It defines all the modalities -
Thai, Swedish, and more and, to my un-
tutored mind, seems fairly comprehensive.
But if you're not interested in texts,
there's plenty of casual reading stocked on
the shelves of the Educating Hands book-
store, as well as clothing, lubricants, aromat-
ics, massage equipment, and accessories.
The bonus for the community comes
on Wednesday and Saturdays, when mas-
sage students engage in supervised clinical
practice. For that, they need willing
patients. In other words, among the other
services you can arrange for at Educating
Hands (reflexology, facials, chiropractic),
you can get a really inexpensive massage
($35 for an hour, by appointment only).
And you're less likely to have long-
lasting, unfortunate results at an Educat-
ing Hands clinic than you are at a dental
clinic or hairstyling clinic. (Trust me, I
used to go to the Vidal Sassoon trainee
center in Los Angeles when I was a
graduate student. Then my friend was
given a baby-bird haircut and the rest
was, well, a peep story.)
The point is, like Ed and Iris, who've
been married for 15 years and residents
of Miami Shores since 1993, Educating

Hands is no fly-by-night operation. The
school, which moved from a previous
location, is celebrating its 30th year.
So why isn't it in the Shores, since
that's where the couple lives? Certainly
there's plenty of room available down-
town, both now and in 2008, when Iris
was searching to move from her spot in
Brickell. A well-established operation
like this one would have been welcome,
no? "I did look," Iris admits. "But the
landlords wanted top dollar, and they
weren't even willing to do the build-out."
Meanwhile, the properties she
looked at in the Shores remain vacant.
Perhaps if Iris had named her business
"Educating Minds," it might have turned
out differently, at least for the Shores.
But I'm not complaining.
Stressful day at school? Kids getting
me down? Parents expecting too much?
I know just where to go, especially
if it's a Wednesday and they're short one
willing patient at the clinic across the
street, to get some hands with education
on some tense shoulders or, at the very
least, to give Ed my feet.

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Neighborhood Correspondents: NORTH MIAMI

Here's Your Hat, What's

Your Hurry?
After North Miami gives Michael Swerdlow the bum's rush, many
questions remain

By Mark Sell
BT Contributor
As of this March 23 writing, the
Michael Swerdlow deal to buy
Biscayne Landing is on code blue.
Doctors have stepped away from the
patient and the chart has flat-lined. The
patient's condition is critical. How did it
get there, and why? For now the answer
is more questions, like these:
Is Swerdlow's long-pending deal to
develop 184 acres into big-box stores,
hotels, and condos in fact dead?
Or with a $500 million development
deal on the table, are we just watching
another stickup to get more money out of
Swerdlow before reviving the patient?

Or have Swerdlow, the city, and all
those consultants just wasted their time
and money? For Swerdlow, that's nine
years and $4 million.
Are we looking at litigation? Or
does a shadow buyer lurk in the wings?
Word's going around that another buyer
is interested in a ten-acre chunk along
Biscayne Boulevard, cutting into the Bis-
cayne Landing site, but we can't confirm.
Is it true?
Exactly how will the city get out
of its deep financial soup if Swerdlow
tanks? What land will it sell? What will
it privatize?
It got $900,000 by selling off trucks
and privatizing trash collection without
competitive bids. That's a one-time

transaction. What's next? What's sus-
tainable? How will it avoid 100 layoffs -
or more? North Miami was running a $6
million deficit on a $41 million budget.
City manager Stephen Johnson says he's
pared it down. How? By how much?
Term-limited Mayor Andre Pierre
might know. But does he care? He told
the city council February 28 that he'd be
"drinking Cuba Libres in the Caribbean"
when his term ends. He's under inves-
tigation by the Florida Division of Law
Enforcement, but in a 2012 election year

in Miami-Dade, that can mean anything.
Or nothing. (By the way, whatever hap-
pened to the $195,000 in CRA money for
the MOCA Caf6? Last time we looked, it
was running months behind, but that's
another story, isn't it?)
When Pierre voted against the
Swerdlow deal March 13, he said he
did not have to give a reason, "on
advice of counsel," as he told the Daily
Business Review.
We left messages with Mayor Pierre,
city manager Johnson, and ex-mayor Joe

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April 2012

Celestin; the latter receives $300,000 a
year to manage the Biscayne Landing site.
The response so far has been radio silence.
Sure, you can say the council, and
not just Pierre, voted it down that day
3-1, with Marie Steril abstaining, but it
was really Pierre's show. Councilman
Michael Blynn moved for the vote to ap-
prove the deal and was quickly seconded
by Jean Marcellus who then voted
against it, right after Pierre did. Mar-
cellus said he had a problem because
Swerdlow didn't include $5 million he
had requested. This was a stickup.
Councilman Scott Galvin opposed
it because he didn't like the patronage-
ridden goodies larded in by city in the
last days, like the $500,000 "educational
fund" for "outreach" to promising stu-
dents, overseen by the city manager. A
good idea, perhaps, but in a development
lease? Nor did he like seeing the revised
lease for the first time just two hours
before the meeting started.
Outside the chambers after the vote,
Swerdlow fidgeted with a cigarette,
struggling to control fury and bewil-
derment after his visit to Cloud Cuck-
ooland, and was overheard muttering:

"This will destroy the commercial
reputation of this city!"
It sure won't help. When word the
Swerdlow bum's rush spreads, who else
will want to do business with the city?
Will North Miami be known as the City
That Strangled the Tooth Fairy? Where
will it find a better deal?
Swerdlow is a big-shot developer
with an impressive track record. Do they
think he's going to run off and leave
the city holding the bag? He already
promised to wire the city $22 million, is
investing $50 million from the get-go,
and revealed plans to spend $500 million
on a ten-year mixed-use development
with big-box stores. He's got some of the
world's biggest banks and biggest devel-
opers with him.
Swerdlow has nearly 40 years' expe-
rience. He built the 106-acre Oakwood
Plaza in Broward and the Dolphin Mall
in West Miami-Dade.
He has a partner with an even bigger
imprint, multibillionaire developer Rich-
ard LeFrak, president of the 111-year-old
LeFrak Organization, one of New York's
and the nation's largest apartment-
building and commercial-property

developers. The group just moved into
Florida to help turn the Perry South
Beach Hotel (formerly the Gansevoort)
at 24th and Collins Avenue into a $100
million development.
So what's next? A crony of the
mayor's wanting to build an indoor ski
slope? Or something even better? Will
there be a market study?
Swerdlow would rather build than
sue, and has generally done what the city
has asked. The deal stalled in February
when he said he would not take liability
for the city's remediation work because
no bank would lend to him on those con-
ditions. But that seemed to get smoothed
over before the deal got changed again.
Swerdlow said he has "been treated hor-
ribly." Like him or not, he has a point.
Most people in the room at the March
13 meeting were agape as events un-
spooled. Even city manager Johnson, who,
despite a sometimes prickly relationship
with Swerdlow (at one council meeting,
the developer called Johnson a "bullshit
artist" before immediately recanting), had
walked into the meeting confident of a deal.
Afterward he looked dazed. Pierre and
most other council members left in a hurry.

The parking lot was abuzz until police
cleared it of the last holdouts at midnight.
The tension on the dais was palpable.
Pierre and the acerbic Blynn obviously
dislike each other intensely and contra-
dict each other whenever possible. At
the end of the March 13 meeting, Pierre,
who often tells people to "keep person-
alities out of it," patronizingly asked the
city manager to "educate the councilman
on my left" (Blynn) about the soundness
of the city's finances, about which Blynn
has grave doubts.
The theatrics were not new. At one
point during the earlier February 28
meeting, Pierre raised eyebrows when
he said that he is not bound by Robert's
Rules of Order, and got the acting city
attorney at the time to agree with him.
The North Miami City Council
meets at 7:00 p.m. the second and fourth
Tuesday of the month in chambers on
the second floor of city hall.
It's the best show in town, and the
police are there to keep you calm. Bring
your popcorn, your questions, and
maybe your pitchforks.

Feedback: letters @biscaynetimes.com

@ olivia V. mmOa
w'ij2 I' L'A >AV FuLAc StzO MUO 'ic Wr -_ i

April 2012

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Neighborhood Correspondents: AVENTURA

A Garden in the Sky
You don't need a big backyard to grow fruits and vegetables
try your terrace

By Shari Lynn Rothstein-Kramer
BT Contributor
From the time I discovered freedom
of choice, I've always been more
comfortable living in high-rise,
multi-unit apartments, or as we call them
here in Florida, condos. The last time I
lived in a detached, single-family house
was more than 20 years ago. It was my
childhood home on Long Island.
Flash forward to post-college. De-
spite my very suburban upbringing, I
have always chosen city living. Transla-
tion: I am a serial apartment dweller.
By itself, that has very little to no
meaning after all, there are millions
of people who choose a c ll -ityle"

existence. Look at Aventura. Out of
35,762 people (according to the 2010
U.S. Census), more than half live in
condos. Perhaps it's because residents
like having multiple valets to park their
car at any time of the day or night. And
they love having said valets carry their
groceries not only up to their front door,
but practically to their refrigerators. For
three dollars a pop, you never have to lift
a finger again.
Another reason for the proliferation of
condos is that, with just 3.2 square miles
of area, land in Aventura is at a premium.
Yet elsewhere in South Florida, many
thousands of single-family homes have
zero-lot lines, meaning the structures
are packed together like eggs in a carton.

For a mere half-million dollars, you can
look out your window and see what your
neighbor is watching on television.
As a matter of fact, there are many
things that should be private that ac-
cidentally become public (eew!), owing

to the lack of space, despite yards and
fences. And while it's kind of creepy, it's
unavoidable in many subdivisions.
Speaking of "lack of space," if you
live in a condo, there is little room for
,i11 i ,,i'. outside, including the real topic



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April 2012

of my column this month: gardening.
I grew up with more land than I knew
what to do with, and very little interest in
plants. We actually used to joke about it,
saying that within one week's time, I could
kill a cactus that had been alive and thriv-
ing for the past quarter of a century. And it
wasn't that much of an exaggeration.
As an adult, my likes, dislikes, hob-
bies, and passions have changed, and
now, with so much emphasis on health,
I've developed a fascination with grow-
ing things. Not trees or flowers, but all
kinds of herbs, vegetables, and even fruit.
All things edible.
I'm sure that my love of food and
cooking has plenty to do with it, as well
as the fact that organic ingredients are
more expensive and, when they come
from my "yard," I know exactly what
went into them and even more impor-
tant what didn't.
Gardening began as a hobby. During
my weekly pilgrimage to the Yellow
Green Farmers Market in Hollywood
(which is the closest thing to a real farm-
ers market in town), I saw some beauti-
ful basil, rosemary, chive, and cilantro
seedlings and a little fig tree and

bought them just to see if I could make
them grow. Because I live on the tenth
floor of a condominium in the heart of
Aventura, I stuck them on the terrace
outside my bedroom. With little more
than regular watering, they grew big and
strong, and in no time flat I was picking
and eating fresh herbs nightly. It was
unbelievable. I was hooked!
Correction- I am hooked. I now grow
all kinds of things, such as catnip (my cats
go crazy for it), lemongrass, mint, oregano,
squash, carrots, cucumbers, radishes, pep-
pers, watermelons, cantaloupe, honeydew,
Brussels sprouts, and most of all, tomatoes.
We're talking multiple varieties, including
beefsteak, patio, and upward of a dozen
types of heirloom tomatoes.
It's incredible to see so many different
kinds of tomatoes, each with its own shape,
size, and flavor. To watch them as tiny
little babies that get larger and then ripen,
changing color right before your eyes, is
remarkable. Not to get too corny a little
gardening humor but it's a miracle.
The idea of planting a seed, watering
it, seeing it sprout, watching it grow into
a plant, picking it, and finally consum-
ing it is mind-blowing to me each and

every time I do it. I know it seems a bit
melodramatic, but I kid you not I get
excited time and time again.
So now that I've been bewitched by
something that humans have been doing
for thousands of years, I started wonder-
ing: "Do other Aventurans garden?"
I began looking at all the balconies
in the back of my building, down my
block, across the canal, but I did not see
one terrace garden. The fact is that I
didn't see anything other than furniture
on balconies, so I started asking around.
And so I began speaking with people
in my building, neighbors out walking their
dogs, strangers in the Publix parking lot,
local retailers. While some said they kept
herb gardens on their windowsills, most of
them had the standard answers: "We don't
have any space to garden." "No time." And
the one that kills me the most: \\ liu s the
point when there's Whole Foods?"
C'mon, really? Where there's a
will there's a way. It just takes a bit of
imagination. In a vertical city, we don't
have any choice but to get creative if we
want to accomplish the things that many
of our suburban counterparts do without
giving it a second thought.

What began with a few small pots on
one balcony has become a prolific "urban
garden." And practically without effort.
It's amazing that I can grow copious
amounts of produce in flowerpots. Granted,
they're 10- to 15-gallon pots, but still, it's not
like I'm growing things in the earth And they
are some of the best vegetables I've ever eaten
Now I have an enormous amount
of -well, everything, including joy. It
makes me so happy to see new growth,
to "harvest" veggies, and to step outside
with my scissors so I can snip fresh
herbs to complete dinner. To me, that's
heaven. I'd even like to start some sort of
"urban farming" community.
So the big question: "Why aren't
more people gardening?"
Seeing that I already know the
answer, the question seems almost
superfluous. But still, in asking around, I
reconfirmed my initial belief.
One of my acquaintances, who actu-
ally does live in a house, put it best: "Not
only wouldn't I play in the dirt, but I
don't cook, so why would I garden?"
Well, at least I know how great it is.

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Neighborhood Correspondents: BISCAYNE PARK

Too Cool for School
The Church of the Resurrection's proposed K-5 charter gets a chilly

reception from some residents

By Gaspar GonzAlez
BT Contributor
There's an old line about going to
watch a fight only to have a hockey
game break out. I felt a little
like that at the March 10 informational
meeting sponsored by the Church of the
Resurrection and Mater Academy, the
charter-school company the church is
looking to partner with on a K-5 school.
The church had organized the meeting
to answer residents' questions about the
proposed school, as well as hear their
concerns, among them the effect a school
might have on traffic in Biscayne Park.
The presenters at the forum
were Father Alberto Cuti6, the

priest-in-charge at the church; Antonio
Roca, president of Mater Academy; and
architect Rolando Llanes. A lot of us in
the room, especially the parents of young
children, saw the meeting as an opportu-
nity to get a feel for what the church and
Mater had in mind, to listen to their pre-
sentation, and ask questions. You know,
learn something about the proposal.
The other half of the room it was
about a 50-50 split was there to make
it clear that they didn't want a school in
Biscayne Park, no how, no way. I suspect-
ed we might be in for a very tense and, in
its own way, entertaining forum when
the woman seated next to me, before the
meeting even began, commented on the
fact that Mr. Llanes was wearing jeans.

Can you imagine? On a Saturday morn-
ing? At an informal neighborhood gather-
ing? Mr. Llanes clearly was not qualified
to discuss anything having to do with
the proposed school. For all we knew, he
wasn't even an architect, but one of those
hippie freaks.
Another woman, also before the
first word had been uttered, was stomp-
ing around like an angry bull, wanting
to know why the meeting had not been

appropriately publicized. Was Mater
Academy trying to hide something? It
was an odd complaint, considering that
she was there, I was there, and a lot of
our neighbors were there. In fact, there
were about 50 or 60 people, as many as
I can recall seeing at any community
gathering of any sort. But no matter.
Those were just the opening acts;
it only went downhill from there.
Opponents of the school wasted no




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April 2012

opportunity to criticize the presenters.
Early on, they jumped on the fact that
Mater had omitted Gratigny Elementary
from a map featuring nearby schools.
Some in the crowd accused the company
of trying to pull a fast one, exaggerating
the need for a charter school in Biscayne
Park by downplaying the number of
schools in our area.
(If that were the case, I would say
that Mater Academy is easily matched in
the creative-math department by those
residents who constantly declare that we
don't need a charter school because there
are 5, 10, 15 public elementary schools
within a five-mile radius of here. For
the last time: There could be 100, but
if you're a parent, you're not allowed to
choose. Your child is required to attend
one of them. A charter school would give
everyone a second public-school option.)
And, of course, there were com-
plaints about what the school would do
to traffic in the area, even though, as
was pointed out, no traffic study has
been done because the project is in the
preliminary stages. That, in turn, led to
more allegations: Was Mater avoiding
a traffic study to disguise the fact they

intended to turn Biscayne Park into an
extension of the Golden Glades Inter-
change? And so on.
Suffice it to say, the people who
don't want a charter school in Biscayne
Park went to the meeting to question
the church's motives for building the
school and Mater's motives for having
the forum, raise objection after objection,
and shut down anyone who might be
inclined to support a school.
Think it wasn't as bad as I'm de-
scribing it? One resident got up and de-
manded to know how many of the people
at the meeting were from somewhere
other than Biscayne Park, the insinuation
being that the room was stacked with
Mater Academy ringers. (Four people
raised their hands.) Another resident
interrogated a neighbor who lives two
doors down from me, wanting to know
if she was a resident; my neighbor had
made the mistake of seeming interested
in a school.
The folks who opposed the project
had a few things in common: They
tended to be older, have been in the vil-
lage longer, and don't have any school-
age children. That makes it easy. In their

eyes, a school can only be a source of
traffic, noise, and inconvenience. They
don't need one, they don't want one, and
the rest of us should just deal.
It would all have been thoroughly
depressing, and embarrassing, had not
so many parents with children in tow -
you try finding a babysitter at 10:00 a.m.
on a Saturday morning spoken so
eloquently about what a school would
mean to them, and might mean for Bis-
cayne Park. Parent after parent, many
of them recent arrivals to the village
(and close neighbors of mine), made
the point that a school could become
a source of civic pride, not to mention
an incentive for other families to move
to the village and perhaps fill some
of those empty houses that are now
common on almost every street.
And it wasn't only younger residents
or parents who spoke in support of having
a school. One gentleman, who arguably
would be affected more than anyone
- he lives directly next door to the
church said he thought it was a fine
idea, provided the church would assume
the cost of erecting a fence to protect
his windows from the rock-throwing

proclivities of young children.
It was a reasonable request, and a
reminder that living in a community
involves balancing your needs and de-
sires with those of your neighbors, not
steamrolling any initiative that doesn't
directly benefit you or may cause you
some slight annoyance. (A school on
113th Street? My wife has to drive down
that street once a week!) Maybe that's
why it stood out.
Mater says it will next conduct a
survey to ascertain how many potential
students there are in the village and sur-
rounding area. Some believe the com-
pany will move forward with the school
regardless of any opposition; the state
gives charters wide latitude.
As a parent and a resident, I too
have concerns about how a school might
impact the village. I'm just not interested
in using those concerns as a bludgeon
to kill the project. Done the right way, a
K-5 charter could be a wonderful thing
for Biscayne Park.
And if we don't get a school? We
could always build a hockey rink.

Feedback: letters@tbiscaynetimes.com

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Neighborhood Correspondents: MIAMI AT LARGE

Something Wet This

Way Comes
Our correspondent has a newfound obsession manatees

By Wendy Doscher-Smith
BT Contributor
Always they lurk. While the
typical Miamian goes about their
morning, shuffling zombie-like
through their shower, shave, and dress
routine, before jumping into their (most
likely) dinged-up vehicle (courtesy of
other inconsiderate or clueless Miam-
ians) and stopping at the Starbucks for
that first AM shot of life, little do they
know that a beast lurks nearby. Many
beasts, in fact.
The beasts are big. The typical beast
is ten feet long and weighs in at about
1000 pounds. The sign of the beast is
subtle. No horns or pointy teeth. (In fact,

teeth are pretty much a nonissue.) No
fire, although the beast, like Miamians,
prefers warmth and actually needs it
to survive. There are no deals you may
make with the beast, as the beast does
not negotiate.
The beast is aquatic, yet it needs air
to breathe. And the beast is everywhere
in Miami-Dade County, including plenty
of spots in the bay and throughout the
inlets along the Biscayne Corridor.
Luckily for feisty Miamians, the
beast is friendly. And for such a big
creature, it is rather elusive. That is to
say, the beast finds you; you don't find
the beast. Unless you are lucky.
Miamians think they are pretty
tough. But I guarantee if you throw

some of our city dwellers in the sea with zooplankton may be tucked in a tuft they

these "gentle giants," a.k.a. manatees,
panic would ensue. On the part of the
Miamians, that is. The manatees could
care less.
The manatees seen in Miami are a
subspecies of the West Indian manatee
and, even though they are mammoth,
they are gentle. Besides, they eat only sea
grass. Occasionally a small sea creature
such as a sea squirt (I did not make that
up), a mollusk, or one of several species of

graze upon and end up as part of the meal,
but that's not the manatee's fault. And
considering they're only equipped with
fins, manatees can't exactly pick through
the greens with a fork. Point is, they pose
zero threat to humans.
Unfortunately, the same cannot be
said about Miamians and their impact on
manatees. Humans make life for Miami
manatees, which are endangered, danger-
ous. Boaters who ignore "no wake" rules




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April 2012

and speed through the posted zones run
the risk of cutting a manatee with their
propellers, which I imagine hurts like
hell, and if the propeller cuts deep enough,
leaves lifelong scars.
Other than careless humans, mana-
tees have no known predators. Yet like
many animals that are superior to us, the
manatee is forgiving of ignorant humans,
and remains friendly and curious.
I met such a manatee last year
during a cold snap. Besides the inlets
in Coral Gables (where, as a kid, I saw
my first manatee), one prime manatee-
spotting site is the Little River in
Miami's Upper Eastside. Manatees can
also be spied at Black Point Marina in
South Miami-Dade, Jimbo's on Virginia
Key (at least as long as Jimbo's remains
open), and at points throughout North
Miami, including East Greynolds Park.
They can also be found along Brickell
Bay Drive.
While living in the cotel (condo-
slash-hotel) in Brickell last year, before
moving to North Miami, I often took
walks around the bay. Behind the Jade
condominium, many a manatee has been
spotted. They usually travel in pairs.

One day I was taking a seat by the
bay's edge when something popped up to
the surface. Nostrils, to be exact. I took a
few steps back so I could get an expand-
ed perspective and I saw what looked
like a giant, grayish, algae-covered pizza.
Or UFO. Up and out of the water went
the nostrils again.
Luckily, I had my "real camera" and
decent lenses with me, so I waited until
the Great Algae-Coated Pizza poked its
nose out again.
I guess the pizza manatee was curi-
ous, because he bopped his whole head
out of the water over and over again, or
about every five minutes, which is how
often these sea creatures need to come
up for air. (They can remain submerged,
usually on the bay floor, for 20-minute
periods of snoozing.)
I remained for an hour or so, snap-
ping shots of the manatee. I found it
nearly impossible to turn away. Later,
during the winter (the Miami mana-
tees are subtropical and must remain
round town until winter is done, at
which point, they migrate north), I
saw a mother cow and her calf in the
same location.

This year I decided to get proactive.
My husband and I booked a s' imn with
the manatees" trip. I'll preface this by
saying that I don't agree with swimming
with animals in captivity. You'll never
find me chasing Flipper and friends
at the Miami Seaquarium. (Note: The
Seaquarium has helped rehabilitate
manatees, though, and released them
back into the wild.)
There are only two counties in Florida
where it is legal to swim near these en-
dangered animals. Neither of them is near
Miami-Dade. Undaunted, we trekked it
up to Citrus County, 45 minutes south of
Ocala, where we booked a manatee tour.
The idea was to get on a pontoon boat,
find some grazing sea cows, and snorkel
near them. Obnoxious behaviors including
touching, feeding, or riding on manatees,
shouting, "Take me with you!" proposing
marriage, or hugging a manatee those
last three are just my personal preferences
- were all prohibited.
The day came and out we went,
dressed in wetsuits and snorkeling gear.
The weather, however, did not cooperate.
It was too warm and extremely windy.
Manatees don't like that. The pontoon

boat jerked about and the captain mut-
tered she'd "rather have lightning than
wind" during a manatee trip. The mana-
tees headed out to the Gulf Coast.
In the end, we snorkeled around a
spring consisting of crystal-clear, 72-
degree water. But the closest we got to
even seeing a manatee, let alone coming
within feet of one, was looking at the
souvenirs in the local gift shops.
I tried not to take this personally.
Like the manatee, I am subtropical and
also do not like crappy weather. Howev-
er, as the saying goes, absence makes the
heart grow fonder, and I'm now some-
what Sirenian (scientific order of the
manatee) obsessed. I left with a manatee
plush doll and a pewter necklace, but ap-
parently that's not enough. I have a real
need to be with the manatees, which is
kind of weird.
At night I lull my neurotic mind to
sleep envisioning swimming with the
slimy, squinty-eyed giants, going with
them on adventures in the open sea,
grazing upon clumps of sea grass, and
doing barrel rolls until we puke them up.

Feedback: letters(@ibiscaynetimes.com

April 2012 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

Neighborhood Correspondents: BELLE MEADE

Bad News, Good News
Even though the bureaucrats seem determined to screw it up, Belle
Meade remains a great place to live

By Frank Rollason
BT Contributor

Our beautiful Belle Meade has
been going through some
trying times during the past few
months. Petty crime is spiking to recent
highs. Not only are cars left unlocked
by careless owners, but the recent rash
of incidents also includes a fair share of
shattered windows to gain access and
pilfer whatever of value may lie in sight.
My neighbor across the street, a
longtime resident, had his garage bur-
glarized the other night. The thief stole
his son's bicycle. The gate to the back-
yard was locked, the garage was locked,
and the bike was locked inside the

garage with a good quality bike lock se-
curing it, or so he thought. All for naught,
as the thief was well equipped with the
necessary tools to render these precau-
tions little more than an inconvenience.
To add insult to injury, the com-
munity's effort to have a fence installed
along NE 6th Court has hit another snag
with the county's public works depart-
ment. It seems a bureaucrat has opined
that gates across sidewalks even
those with no locks and no latches -
are not in compliance with the Ameri-
cans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and
thus can't be installed.
The city's capital projects personnel
had designed a gate that was little more
than a swinging appendage requiring

no separate motion to gain access other
than a push or a pull and would return
to a "closed" position by means of a
spring mechanism, much the same as the
swinging kitchen door that many of us
have in our homes.
But no, this would be unfair to the
plethora of handicapped people who
must gain access to our neighborhood

on a regular basis. We see them every-
where you know, all those wheel-
chairs coming and going, in and out, day
and night, 24/7! With logic like this, one
wonders how businesses are allowed to
even have doors on their establishments.
At some point there has to be a
sense of reasonableness in making
accommodations for the handicapped

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.comApril 2012

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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

(as the ADA code itself states). When
weighing the access issue with the
security issue, it would seem to me that
there must be some point at which the
two objectives can coexist. Then again,
maybe not. We'll see how well our dis-
trict commissioner champions our cause
and whether or not we will ever see the
fence constructed.
Then there's the matter of the Mi-
ami-Dade Water and Sewer Department
(WASD) now deciding that this is the
right time to come into Belle Meade and
replace several water mains. Yes, folks,
right after we have endured several years
of excavation for the new storm-water
pump station project, WASD has decided
to come in and tear up the newly paved
roadways to replace some aging water
lines. Nothing like a well-coordinated
effort between the city and the county
so that we only have to go through this
mess one time.
Way back, I implored the city to
get with the county to make sure that
water and sewer lines were in service-
able condition for years to come; all to
no avail. I'm sure many of you have seen
the surveyors on the street doing their

preliminary work before the trenching
begins. I spoke to one of the surveyors
and asked if both water and sewer lines
had been evaluated and would both be
replaced this time as needed.
He responded, "Oh, no, this is
only for the water lines. The sewer
lines are handled by another depart-
ment. Our work order doesn't include
any surveying for sewer lines." And
the beat goes on...
But even with these challenges, we
live in a beautiful neighborhood.
The other day I was up at the
children's park watering the recently
planted trees. We have two large
oaks that were transplanted from the
Orange Bowl site in order to make
way for the new Marlins stadium.
These trees came as the result of the
hard work of Katrina, our homeowner
association parks coordinator, and the
city's parks personnel, who replaced
the huge ficus tree that had to be re-
moved because of whitefly infestation.
Two smaller oaks, which will eventu-
ally provide a great shade canopy for
the kiddies and their parents, were
planted by the city.

Then if you look around the park,
you will see a couple of beautiful butter-
fly gardens (again, courtesy of Katrina),
as well as additional plantings of palms
and other foliage by neighbors and land-
scapers who do business in Belle Meade.
Darryl planted the mulberry tree and it's
already beginning to bear fruit to the de-
light of the children and the chagrin
of their parents as they try to remove the
berry stains from their clothing.
But I digress. While watering the
oaks, a woman approached me with a
little one who was fascinated with the
water coming from the hose, as most
all the little ones are. As we spoke, she
explained that she was the boy's grand-
mother and she comes twice a week to
relieve the nanny who usually takes care
of him. She went on to say how lovely
our neighborhood is and how lucky her
daughter is to live here.
Grandma lives in the Gables and
says there just isn't the same sense of
community she sees here in beautiful
Belle Meade. For instance, she could not
get over that I was there watering the
trees or that neighbors and landscapers
add trees to the park to make it more

beautiful. She said that, at first, she was
very apprehensive when her daughter
told her she was moving into our neigh-
borhood. After visiting, however, she
found our area to be "an oasis" just off
the busy Boulevard.
I told her that we do have our mo-
ments with crime, but she would not be
deterred in singing our praises. "Oh,"
she said, "we have similar events in
the Gables, but this neighborhood is so
peaceful and the people are so nice." I
couldn't argue with her there.
Then I went home and found my
neighbor Bruce (the same guy who had
just had his garage burgled) raking the
leaves up and down the street in front of
his house. And down the street from him
was a lady (a renter, mind you) who was
also out on the street raking the leaves.
Bruce lamented that the street
sweeper had not been by for quite some
time, "so I guess it's up to us to keep
the street looking nice." Yes, Bruce, it's
up to us to do whatever is necessary to
keep Belle Meade beautiful, and such a
wonderful place to live.

Feedback: letters@itbiscaynetimes.com

April 2012 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com



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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

Culture: THE ARTS

Multi-Dimensional Man

Mark Diamond's 3-D photos and holograms are sought by

collectors and corporate clients -

By Anne Tschida
BT Contributor

On a leafy, verdant street at the
edge of El Portal sits the studio,
gallery, and home of a photog-
rapher who might be better known away
from Miami than in his hometown.
Mark Diamond makes 3-D images,
video, holograms, and stereograms of
people, pets, cityscapes, architecture,
sculpture sometimes on commission,
sometimes for the love of it.
When visiting the studio, you might
see a 3-D aerial photo of this 1924 house
and surrounding neighborhood, as
Diamond shot a series of architectural
photos of Miami from a helicopter. The
skeleton of the Marlins' stadium, the
latest Biscayne Boulevard and Brickell
high-rises, and the moribund Marine
Stadium on Key Biscayne almost look
like little models when rendered in
It's images like these that have made
Diamond attractive to clients and aficio-
nados across the globe. Developers have
used such images for PR packets, and
collectors and galleries have displayed
them in their spaces. Lately some people
have requested portraits, for some reason,
of their dogs.
One large 3-D piece, covered in
Plexiglas, lies on the floor of the studio-
home. You can walk over it and, when

and dog lovers, too

you do, the irises sprouting from dirt that
make up the image seem to sway and
undulate. It's a small-scale version of a
piece that has yet to come to fruition, a
victim of the Great Recession.
On this bright, cool day in March,
with doors and windows open, reveal-
ing a view of an extensive garden and
grounds, Diamond explains that a Japa-
nese bank commissioned a much larger
version of the work, which depicts a
budding rice paddy, for its building in
Tokyo. Visitors would walk on it as they
entered. For now at least, the project is
on hold.
Hanging from the ceiling in another
room is one of Diamond's most popular
works, a hologram of Dizzy Gillespie.
Done as a limited edition, the piece has
found a place in a number of collections.
As you move side to side, the jazz great
seems to come alive, puffing his cheeks,
blowing his horn, and then smiling.
Diamond, a musician himself, met
Gillespie in California in the 1980s -
"he was a bit of a shutterbug himself,"
says Diamond and took 100 photos
of the trumpeter to create this particu-
lar hologram.
Holography, as Diamond explains, is
a completely different animal than 3-D
photography. Holography "is more like
sonar or radar," recording light beams
and utilizing laser techniques to come up
with the final product, which is "really

Huasska Panorama, a video art collaboration with Rodrigo Arcaya and
Stuart Ellis, is another form of Diamond's kinetic art.

You have to see Cindy's Purple Cabbage in 3-D to fully appreciate the
minute details.

more ephemeral, not like a photograph
at all." Without concrete mountings or
frames, holograms appear to float, you

can see through them, and they are more
akin to sculpture. From a distance, holo-
grams are not even visible.

Now available at all meters and many parking lots in the
City of Miami. Sign up for free: www.paybyphone.com
Sor call 866-990-PARK (7275).

For more information, visit www.miamiparking.com.

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

Although obsessed with
holograms from a young age,
3-D is what he concentrates
on now. It's far cheaper and
less time-consuming than
making holograms; 3-D imag-
ery may only involve taking
six to ten photographs, and
can be made the same day in
the studio.
While Diamond would
specialize in holography, his
first love was photography;
more precisely, photojournal-
ism. Born in Panama to a
photojournalist mother and a
father who was a TV stringer
covering South American
upheavals, he heard stories
and learned of topical events
through visuals, he remembers. Sculptu
By the time he was ten collabo
and living in Miami, he was come a
playing around with a lens.
Still in his teens, he was con-
tacted by Rolling Stone at the last minute
to shoot some images of the 1972 Repub-
lican Convention in Miami Beach, which
was attracting politicians and radicals
alike. The Rolling Stone photo editor at
the time was Annie Leibovitz.
"Pictures became my calling," says
Diamond, who would go on to work for
various alternative newspapers and mag-
azines in the 1970s. He photographed
rock stars, jazz musicians, and activists,
while indulging in his love of music and
of that new genre called holography.
He went to New York to study it, and
his holograms appeared in the then-
recently opened Museum of Hologra-
phy on Fifth Avenue. (That pioneering
collection was eventually bought by the
museum at the Massachusetts Institute
of Technology, where it now resides,
having become the largest hologram

ires like Box in Clouds, a
ration with Boni Grossman Smith,
live in 3-D.

collection in the world.)
Eventually Diamond returned Miami
and opened a gallery specializing in
holography the first in the Southeast
in the Falls area in the mid-1970s. He
exhibited holograms made by practitio-
ners from across the globe, and contin-
ued to make his own.
He closed the gallery in 1988, and
concentrated on building up a clientele and
collecting base. And he did. His holograms
are found in hotels, at NASA, and Disney
World. His portraits hang in the homes of
Quincy Jones and Wynton Marsalis.
These days, he is asked to make
3-D photographs of a lot of sculpture,
as people have come to realize that, far
from a gimmick, 3-D depictions are far
closer to the real thing than 2-D. During
Art Basel Miami Beach, he created such
imagery for the Will Ryman flower
sculpture in front of the Sagamore

A contemplative Dick Gregory: Diamond was conflicted about how to
portray the outspoken comedian.

Hotel, and for an installation from local
artist Robert Chambers at the Ping
Pong exhibit.
Most recently, he was commissioned
to make some old-fashion video, no 3-D
involved, for a new Peruvian restaurant
and lounge in downtown Miami and for
the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood Interna-
tional Airport. Although often commis-
sioned, Diamond also snaps away at art
openings and studios, for the love of it.
Back in his own space, it's clear
where Diamond's heart lies in the
numerous portraits of musicians, rebels,
and innovators found all over the walls.
"I often say, 'The more I learn about art,
the more I like science,'" he quips. "Seri-
ously, art and science bear some meth-
odological corollaries once in a while,

what surfaces is truly an evolutionary
Diamond points to one of his
favorites, a 3-D image of Bo Diddley
- known as "The Originator" for his
Chicago-style mixture of blues and rock
- wearing a bejeweled hat and playing
a square guitar. There's also a picture
of Les Paul, the inventor of the electric
guitar, and one transfixing portrait of co-
median and social activist Dick Gregory.
Diamond says he told Gregory he
was conflicted as to how to portray
him with humor or seriousness? The
end result is an image of a solemn man
whose eyes, thanks to 3-dimensional in-
novation, nonetheless twinkle.

Feedback: letters(aibiscaynetimes.com

0I 1 0 I S I I


Updated 3/2 on 3 lots.
Overlooks golf course.
Gourmet eat-in kitchen.
Family room. Wood floors.
Fireplace. New roof. Garage.

Value priced 2/1 on quiet
street. Family Room,
Garage. Fenced Yard. Needs
some updating but priced
to sell. Not a short sale!

3/2, wood floors, fireplace.
Huge family room. New tile
roof. Over-sized lot with
room for a pool.
Great location! Reduced.

Updated 3/2 on huge lot in
Bisc. Park. New granite kitchen.
New central a/c. Updated
electric. Seller will install new
roof. Room for pool.

April 2012 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

166 mm N98Sre

: 7-8 N 98: Stree


April 2012

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com




101 NE 40th St, Miami
www 101exhibit com
Through April 12
"New Paintings" by David Michael Bowers
April 14 through June 6
"Poison Bliss" by Ted Vasin
Reception April 14, 7 to 9 p.m.

12345 W Dixie Hwy, North Miami
www dlxielmageworks com
Through April 15
"Simply China" by Nancy Brown

233 NW 36th St, Miami
www abbafineart com
"Nature's Pulse" by Debra Holt

4949 NE 2nd Ave, Miami
www acnd net
Through April 4
"23 Degrees, Far from Paradise" by Benjamin Rusnak
April 21 through May 26
"AWoman's Eye" with Jenny Babot Romney, Jennifer
Kay, and Sacha Suarez, curated by Carl Juste and
Jenny Babot Romney
Reception April 21, 7 to 9 p.m.

2294 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
www albertolinerogallery com
April 1 through 30
"Carnaval" with Romgo, Breceda, Vanessa Whalte
Sterzwskl, Carmen Del Rio, Pedro Sandoval, Santiago
Betancur, Darlo, and Luls Jimenez

2630 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
www alejandravonhartz net
April 13 through June 1
"Voyage and Rhythm A Painting Installation" by Malene

750 NE 124th St North Miami
www alonsored com
Call gallery for exhibition information

1 NE 40th St, Miami
April 2 through June 18
"A Spring Affair" with various artists
Reception April 14, 7 to 11 p.m.

348 NW 29th St, Miami

www artnouveaugaleria com
April 12 through June 2
Alberto Cavalieri
Reception April 12, 6 to 9 p.m.

171 NW 36th St, Miami
www jacques-harvey com
April 14 through 30
"The Magical Art of Jacques Harvey" by Jacques
Reception April 14, 7 to 10 p.m.

2215 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
http //artseenspace wordpress com
Call gallery for exhibition information

2441 NW 2nd Ave Miami
www ascasogallery com
Through April 30
"Visible Structure and Reflected Color" by Luls
Tomasello, curated by Serge Lemolne

561 NW 32nd St, Miami
www bacfl org
April 13 through May 1
"Recently Acquired III" with Joanna Brussow, Toa
Castellanos, Marcelo Daldoce, Silvana D'Mikos,
Marina Font, Michael Gellatly, Judith Berk King, Andres
Martinez, Carolina Rojas, Paul Saint Laurent, and Jose
Reception April 13, 7 to 10 p.m.

180 NE 39th St, Suite 210, Miami
By appointment info@basfisherinvitational com
Call gallery for exhibition information

3550 N Miami Ave, Miami
www bernicesteinbaumgallery com
Through April 4
"I Witness" with Lynsey Addaro, Kursat Bayhan,
Paula Bronstein, Jahl Chlkwendlu, Andre Chung, Alan
Diaz, Hector Emanuel, Colin Finlay, Bill Frakes, C M
Guerrero, Andrew Innerarity, Andrew Kaufman, Andrew
Lichtenstein, Pablo Martinez Monsivals, Kirk D McKoy,
Salkat Mojumder, Tom Pennington, Roger M Richards,
Michael Robinson Chavez, Jeffery A Salter, Maggie
Steber, Les Stone, Charles Tralnor Jr, Shehab Uddin,
and Nun Vallbona
April 14 through May 31
"The Three Dimensional Gods and Goddesses Meet
Their Cousins the Trees" by Edouard Duval Carrie
"Novo Aniversarlo" by Reynler Leyva Novo
Reception April 14, 2 to 9 p.m.

2248 NW 1st PI, Miami
www blacksquaregallery com
Through April 30
"Excel-Art" by Alexly Say

100 NE 38th St, Miami
www borinquenhealth org

Jeroen Diepenmaat, Pour des dents d'un blanc 6clatant et saines, record
players, vinyl records, stuffed birds, sound, 2005, at Miami Art Museum.

"Group Show" with H-Allen Benowitz, Frangols Gracla,
Clarice de Souza, David Tupper, Sharon Dash, and
Hector Maldonado, and "Creatos Aetas" by Kourtney
Eugene Brown
Through April 7
"March Gallery Walk & the Design District" with
Kourtney Eugene Brown, David Tupper, Sonia Neffettl,
Clarice Desouza, Rick Esposito, Sacha Suarez, Rosa
Gallardo, Claudine Charles, Nisa Vasquez, Andres
Rodriguez, and Fannie Collndres

12425 NE 13th Ave #5, North Miami
www bridgeredstudlos com
April 14 to 29 "Bridge Red Ballyhoo" with Carlos
Alvez, Rene Barge, Carol Brown, JC Carroll, Robert
Chambers, Lou Anne Colodny, William Cordova,
Elmer Craig, Duane Hanson, Charles Hashim, Shirley
Henderson, Jackle Lipsky, Mary Maim, Zaydee
Martinez, Gustavo Matamoros, Ron Mitchell, Gary
Monroe, Barbara Neijna, Joe Nicastrl, Kerry Phillips,
Karen Rifas, Tom Schmitt, Ellie Schnelderman, Janet
Slom, Laura Tan, Sherri Tan, Krlsten Thlele, Robert
Thlele, Odalis Valdivieso, Kerry Ware, Jim Couper, and
Salvatore La Rosa
Reception April 29: 6 to 9 p.m.

180 NE 39th St, Suite 120, Miami
April 14 through May 4
"Common Ground" with Elizabeth Aro, Josep Esculn,
Cristina Ghettl, Vicent Insa, Molses Manas, Javier
Marlsco, Claudia Martinez, Sebastian Miralles, Ellas
Perez, Ima Pico, Andrea Racclattl, Duane Brant,
Natasha Duwin, Andres Ferrandis, Donna Haynes,
Kerry Phillips, Sara Rytteke, George Sanchez-
Calderon, and Alette Simmons-Jimenez
Reception April 14, 7 to 10 p.m.

8351 NE 8th Ct, Miami
www susannacaldwell com
"Seductive Assemblages and Wood Sculpture" by
Susanna Caldwell

158 NW 91st St, Miami Shores
www cjazzart com
By appointment carol@cjazzart com
Through April 22
"Full Spectrum Dominance" with Conor McGrady and
Roberto Visani
"A Little Window Inside My Head" by Ana Albertina

758 NE 125th St North Miami
www candigallery com
Eduardo Carldl
Reception April 27, 6 to 10 p.m.

541 NW 27th St, Miami
www visual org
Through May 8
"Cuba The Natural Beauty" by Clyde Butcher

250 NW 23rd St, Miami
www charestwelnberg com
Through June 2
"Eclipse" by Hannes Bend

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

787 NE 125th St North Miami
www chirinossanchez com
"Group Show" with various artists

2509 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
www curatorsvolceartprojects com
Call gallery for exhibition information

Shops at Midtown Miami
Store # 120 Buena Vista Blvd Miami
www danielazoulaygallery com
Through May 1
"Narrative in Photography" with Karen Knorr, Carlos
and Jason Sanchez, and Daniel Azoulay

2234 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
www davidcastillogallery com
April 14 through May 31
Kate Gilmore
Reception April 14, 6 to 9 p.m.

2043 N Miami Ave, Miami
www dlfinearts com
Through May 31
"Paper and Light" by Angela Glajcar
"Word of Mouth" by Michael Loveland
Reception April 14, 6 to 10 p.m.

3938 N Miami Ave, Miami
305 573-4046
www diasporavibe net
Through April 4
"Living Sculpture II (Jamaica-International Cultural
Exchange)" with Carlos Alejandro, Danny Ramirez,
Jacquenette Arnette, Patricia Roldan, Rodney Jackson,
Selina Roman, Hugo Moro, Sarah Krupp, Benarl
Kamau, Erin Nutsugah, Alsha Tandlwe Bell, Nicole
Wynter, Vanessa Greene, and Kerry Kennedy

2620 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
www dinamitranlgallery com
April 12 through June 1
"About a Boy" by Luls Lazo

151 NW 24th St, Miami
www dorschgallery com
April 5 through May 5
"For Old Time's Sake" by Ralph Provisero
"Let's Begin With a Line" with Jenny Brillhart, Peter
Demos, Katie Hinton, Jiae Hwang, Brookhart Jonquil,
Zerek Kempf, JT Kirkland, Jeroen Nelemans, Lee
Ranaldo, Ryan Roa, Jennifer Lauren Smith, and Robert
Reception April 5, 6 to 9 p.m.

51 NW 36th St, Miami
www dotflftyone com
Call gallery for exhibition information

46 NW 36th St, Miami
www elitearteditions com
Call gallery for exhibition

50 NE 40th St, Miami
www etrafineart com
Call gallery for exhibition

2247 NW 1st PI Miami
www snitzer com
Through April 28 Zerek Kempf,
"Futile" by Zhivago Duncan Dorsch Galleri

125 NW 23rd St, Miami
www galerlehelenelamarque com
Call gallery for exhibition

2085 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
www galleryschuster com
April 14 through May 12
"Mangrove Mud Womp" by Onajide Shabaka
Reception April 14, 5 to 9:30 p.m.

2407 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
www gallery212miami com
April 14 through May 12
"Eye Candy" with Michael Perez, Sean Murdock, John
Pate Jr, John Pate Sr, Matt Stock, Jonathan Bevers,
Jason Perez, Fred Love, and Larry Rivers
Reception April 14, 7 to 11 p.m.

174 NW23rd St, Miami
www gallerydlet com
April 5 through May 12
"Out of Place" by Christy Gast
Reception April 5, 6 to 9 p.m.

62 NE 27th St, Miami
www garynader com
Through April 30
"The Grand Latin American Art Show" with various

3326 N Miami Ave, Miami
www hardcoreartmlaml com
Through April 7
"Games in the Dark" by Gladys Triana
"Untitled" by Consuelo Castaneda, Gabriela Morawetz,
and Manuela Covini
April 14 through June 2
"This Sharp World by Kate Kretz
Reception April 14,
7 to 10 p.m.


3ne and Four, digital video, 2002, at

2294 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
www haroldgolengallery com
Through April 7
"Modernity Miami" with various artists

2417 N Miami Ave, Miami
www ideobox com
Call gallery for exhibition information

123 NW 23rd St, Miami
www kabecontemporary com
Through May 15 "New Works" by Luca Pozzi

46 NW 36th St, Miami
www kavachnina com
Call gallery for exhibition information

50 NE 29th St, Miami
www kelleyroygallery com
Through April 7
"Abstract to Concept" with Fran Bobadilla, and Peggy
April 14 through June 2
"Soul Training" by Antonio Ugarte
Reception April 14, 2 to 9 p.m.

48 NW 29th St, Miami
www klwlartsgroup com
William John Kennedy's Fine Art Photography
Collection of Early Pop Artists

2300 N Miami Ave, Miami
www galerleleliamordoch com
Through April 7
"Double Entendre" with Patrick Hughes, Miss Tic,
Daniel Florda, Keren, Kelth Long, Francisco Sobrino,
Joe Nell, Gerard Delafosse, and Robert Blanc

3852 N Miami Ave, Miami
www locustprojects org
Through April 27
"Shortness of Breath" by Natalya Laskis
"High, Low and in Between" by Emmett Moore

3030 NE 2nd Ave, Miami
http //maormiaml org
Call gallery for exhibition information

300 NE 2nd Ave, Miami
Bldg 1, Room 1365
305-237-3696, www mdc edu
April 5 through 27
"2012 Emerging Artists" with various artists

600 Biscayne Blvd, Miami
Through May 4
"Minimum/Maximum" with various artists

11380 NW 27th Ave, Miami
www mdc edu
April 5 through June 15
"2012 Emerging Artists" with various artists

500 College Terr, Homestead
www mdc edu/homestead
April 5 through June 15
"2012 Emerging Artists" with various artists

1110 SW 104th St, Miami
www mdc edu/kendall
Through April 6
"Not For Sale" with Alena Fresquet, Victor J Gomez,
and Ralph Provisero
April 5 through 20
"2012 Emerging Artists" with various artists

20 NE 41st St, Suite 2, Miami
www mlchaeljongallery com
Through April 14
"Brand New Heartache" by Theodora Allen

Shops at Midtown Miami
Store #120 Buena Vista Blvd Miami
www mlchaelperez-artist com
Call gallery for exhibition information

177 NW 23rd St, Miami
631-704-3476, www myragallerles com
Through May 31
"Myra Galleries Anniversary" with Milani, Lee Leenam,
Kim Kyeong Ja, Paolo Cassara, and Jean Duffy

New World School of the Arts
25 NE 2nd St, Miami
Call gallery for exhibition information

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

1800 N Bayshore Dr, Miami
www ninatorresfineart com
April 27 through May 26
Ivonne Torres
Reception April 27, 7 to 10 p.m.

2561 N Miam Ave, Mami
www norman-liebman-studlo com
Call gallery for exhibition information

2600 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
www oascanlogallery com
Call gallery for exhibition information

8650 Biscayne Blvd Suite 21, Miami
Call gallery for exhibition information

170-C NW 24th St, Miami
www oncearts com
Pablo Gentile, Jame Montana, Jalme Apraez, and
Patricia Chaparro

2450 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
www panamericanart com
April 7 through June 2
"Abstract Art from Cuba 1950s & 1960s" with Guido
Llinas and Raul Martinez
"Project Room" with Raul Milian and Lolo Soldevilla
Reception April 6, 6:30 to 9 p.m.

2311 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
www miguelparedes com
"Elements of an Artist" by Miguel Paredes

4141 NE 2nd Ave, Suite 104, Miami
www primaryprojectspace com
info@primaryflight com
April 14 through May 31
"In the Valle de los Caldos" by Lawrence Gipe
Reception April 14, 7 to 11 p.m.

82 NE 29th St, Miami
www artnet com/sammergallery html
Through April 6
"Equivocal Space" with Farcedote Faron and Costidlelo

162 NE 50th Terr, Miami
www stashgallery com
Call gallery for exhibition information

150 NE 41st St, Miami
http //swampspace blogspot com/
swampstyle@gmall com
Call gallery for exhibition information

3223 NE 2nd Ave, Miami
www tonywynn com
"Patriotica" by Tony Wynn

310 NW 24th St, Miami
www thelunchboxgallery com
Through April 7
"iPhoneography" with various

2200-A NW2nd Ave,
April 14 through 27
"Incandescent Smoke and
Mirrors" by Clark F DeCapite, Jr
Reception April 14, 4:30 to
9:30 p.m.

2219 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
www unixfineart com
"Group Show" with various artists Clark F. DeC
electrical cc
NW 2nd Avenue between 25th Project Spa
and 26th streets
www thewynwoodwalls com
"Wynwood Walls" with Retna, How & Nosm, Roa, b,
The Date Farmers, Saner, Sego, Liqen, Neuzz, Falle,
Vhils, Interesni Kazkl, Kenny Scharf, Nunca, Shepard
Fairey, Aiko, Ryan McGinness, Stelios Faltakis, and

250 NW23rd St, Unit 306, Miami
www yeelenart com
Through May 31
"Possession" by Jerome Solmaud


800 Lincoln Rd Miami Beach
www artcentersf org
April 6 through May 6
"Winning Artl 11th Annual Benefit Raffle" with resident
Reception April 13, 7 to 10 p.m.
Closing Reception and Raffle
May 5, 7 to 10 p.m.

2100 Collins Ave, Miami Beach
www bassmuseum org
Through August 12
"Erasey Page" by Jillian Mayer and Eric Schoenborn
Reception April 6, 8 to 11 p.m.
April 27 through August 12
"Charles Ledray Bass Museum of Art" by Charles

:apite, Jr., Untitled, wood, glass, ceramic
)mponents, 2012, at the University of Mia

CIFO (Cisneros Fontanals Art Foundation)
1018 N Miami Ave Miami
www clfo org
April 14 through 30
"BFA Exhibition" with various artists
Reception April 14, 7 to 10 p.m.

23 NE 41st St, Miami
www delacruzcollection org
"Works from the Collection of Rosa and Carlos de la
Cruz" with various artists

10975 SW 17th St, Miami
thefrost flu edu
Through April 15
"Metropole/Colony Africa and Italy" with various artists
Through April 18
"Discrepant Modernism" with Peter Hammar, Pepe Mar,
and Alex Trimino
Through April 20
"Aesthetics and Values 2012" with Roberto Behar and
Rosario Marquadt, Robert Chambers, Luls Garcla-
Nerey, Jiae Hwang, Kuhl and Leyton, Ed Levine, Jillian
Mayer, Gean Moreno, Gavin Perry, and David Rohn
Through July 1
"The War We Have Not Seen" by Juan Manuel
April 21 through August 5
"Sculpture" by Ursula von Rydingsvard
April 25 through May 6
"Doxa" with various artists
April 25 through May 9

"PS / PPS by Michael Genovese
April 25 through August 26
"Miami's Vices" with various artists,
curated by Annie Wharton
"Museum Studies Spring 2012 Exhibition
Jamaican Art" with various artists

1035 N Miami Ave, Suite 200, Miami
www legalartmlaml org
Call gallery for exhibition information

1301 Stanford Dr, Coral Gables
www lowemuseum org
Through April 22
"Women, Windows, and the Word
Diverging Perspectives on Islamic Art"
with various artists
Through September 23
"Saintly Blessings A Gift of Mexican
Retablos from Joseph and Janet Sheln"
with various artists
April 14 through June 3
"Recent Paintings" by Darby Bannard

101 W Flagler St, Miami
c, www miamiartmuseum org
[mi Ongoing
"Between Here and There Modern and
Contemporary Art from the Permanent
Through April 29
"Focus Gallery Marcel Duchamp" by Marcel Duchamp,
curated by Rene Morales
Through May 6
"Restless Recent Acquisitions from the MAM
Collection" with various artists
Through June 10
"The Record Contemporary Art and Vinyl" with various

770 NE 125th St North Miami
www mocanoml org
Through May 6
Rita Ackermann

591 NW 27th St, Miami
www margulieswarehouse com
Through April 28
"New Exhibitions" with various artists

95 NW 29th St, Miami
http //rfc museum
Through July 27
"American Exuberance" with various artists

Debra and Dennis Scholl Collection
170 NW 23rd St, Miami
www worldclassboxing org
Call gallery for exhibition information

Compiled by Melissa Wallen
Send listings, jpeg images, and events information to
artfbhiscavnetimes conm

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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com April 2012


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012


Circle the Date
Now that dog owners have been told to rein in their pets at
the Miami Circle (Do people let their canines run around
at other cemeteries?) maybe it's time to revisit the ancient
Tequesta site for the Miami Circle River Walk and Brazil-
ian Lunch sponsored by HistoryMiami (101 W. Flagler St.),
on Saturday, April 7, from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. The tour will
take in the historic area at the confluence of the Miami River
and Biscayne Bay, and includes an optional lunch at Camila's
Brazilian Restaurant. Cost is $30 for nonmembers; $20 for
members. Reservations are required. Call 305-375-1621 or go
to www.historymiami.org.

Dinner and Dancing All
at Once
Tunisian Radhouane el Meddeb started
out as a stage and screen actor in the
Arabic world and in France, before incor-
porating intriguing forms of dance and
performance art into his work, including
literally mixing in some cooking of cous-
cous. And yes, the audience can taste the
results. Miami Light Project is bringing
him to town on Friday, April 13, at 8:00
p.m. for IDance and I Feed You, at the
Light Box at Goldman Warehouse (404
NW 26th St.). Tickets cost $25. Go to

Visions of Vinyl
We can look back at such objects as the
rotary phone, the typewriter, and TV an-
tenna with some bemusement. How ever
did we survive? But the demise of the
vinyl record and, maybe just as impor-
tant, those amazing covers that enfolded
them, is another matter. At the Miami
Art Museum (101 W. Flagler St.), we can
revisit those fantastic images and see
new images influenced by album covers,
in The Record: Contemporary Art
and Vinyl, which runs through June 10.
It's a diverse and comprehensive show,

exploring the culture of vinyl and its
impact on contemporary art. Admission
to the museum is $8. Go to www.miam-

A Clean Bay Is a Happy Bay
It's a milestone for Miami a city not
known for its environmentally friendly
policies that Baynanza is celebrat-
ing its 30th anniversary. The annual
event, this year taking place on Satur-
day, April 21, encourages residents to
turn up to one of 28 sites along the bay
to clean up our fabled body of water.
From Greynolds Park all the way down
to Biscayne National Park, everyone is
asked to pitch in. At five of the locations,
volunteers will be shipped by boat to out-
lying islands. Recommendations: Lots
of sunscreen and insect repellent, gloves,
and a hat. Close-toed shoes, no sandals.
To secure a specific location, register by
calling 305-372-6784 or going to www.

NMB Loves J-A-Z-Z
The City of North Miami Beach is
expanding our region's music scene
with Jazzapalooza, the first entry in
the inaugural NMB Concert Series. On
Saturday, April 21, starting at 7:00 p.m.

ICan We Talk?
Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work is
such a great (and apt) title for this
Iiconic female comedian yes, she's
a handful, and yes, she's had lots of
work done. She's also a pioneer in a
man's world, and this film has won
wide acclaim for its subtle portrayal
of her climb through the comedic
ranks. As part of its documentary
film series, the Aventura Arts and
Cultural Center (3385 NE 188th St.)
will screen the movie on Tuesday,
April 17, at 7:00 p.m. Tickets are $10.
Go to www.aventuracenter.org.

at the Littman Theater (17011 NE 19th
Ave.), the award-winning University of
Miami Frost Concert Jazz Band will
take the stage for free. The large-
band ensemble will embark on a musical
history tour of jazz, from ragtime to its
contemporary improvisational form. The
night actually starts with a wine and
hors d'oeuvres reception at 6:30 p.m.
Although the event is free, tickets are
required and can be picked up at 17051
NE 19th Ave. Call 305-948-2986.

A Flash of Flamenco
Flamenco has become ubiquitous around
town, from major festivals to perfor-
mances from local companies. But leave it
to Tigertail Productions to bring us the ex-
perimental edge with Nu Flamenco, a solo
guitar outing from Jos6 Luis Rodriguez, a
native of Morocco who studied with the
masters in the heartland of flamenco: An-
dalusia, Spain. On Saturday, April 21, at
8:30 p.m., he will be joined by Miami-born,
Spanish-trained, boundary-pushing dancer
Niurca Marquez. At the Colony Theatre
(1 141I Lincoln Rd., Miami Beach); tickets
range from $20 for students to $50 for VIP
Go to www.tigertail.org.

Through a Queer Lens
The Miami Gay and Lesbian Film
Festival, which runs Friday, April 27
through Sunday, May 6, has become a
cultural highlight of the South Florida
scene. Its placement on the calendar
also makes it the first major national
LGBT film festival of 2012, so you
can say you saw it here first. The fest
will feature 65 films at various venues,
including the Hirschfeld Theatre at the
Castle Beach Hotel (5445 Collins Ave.,
Miami Beach). There's a broad choice
of offerings, from documentaries to,
yes, The Muppets Take Manhattan,
spanning the globe from New Zealand
to Cuba. For venues, films, and show-
times, go to www.mglff.com

Strike Up the Bandshell
There's no better way to welcome back
the North Beach Bandshell (7275 Col-
lins Ave., Miami Beach) after exten-
sive renovations than with a concert
from the Rhythm Foundation's superb
Transatlantic Festival, this time featur-
ing Seun Kuti and Egypt 80. The
son of the Nigerian Afrobeat king
Fela Kuti, Seun and his massive band
return to the outdoor venue on Friday,
April 13 at 7:00 p.m. The following
night, Saturday, April 14, percus-
sionist Pedrito Martinez's Afro-Cuban
quartet plays, also at 7:00 p.m. An
extra attraction this year: The Miami
Art Museum Soundbomb Bus (a 1970s
Volkswagen bus), based on Jamaican
sound system buses, will pull up and
spin music during breaks. Tickets are
$20 in advance; $25 at the door. Go to

Miami: Cold War Hot Spot
The early 1960s was a seminal time
for 20th-century America (see Mad
Men), a time of seismic changes that
would transform society. For Miami
it was maybe even more intense. The
Castro revolution and subsequent influx
of Cuban exiles literally changed the
make-up and outlook of the city. Local
playwright Michael McKeever returns
to the Adrienne Arsht Center for the
Performing Arts (1444 Biscayne Blvd.)
with his play about this era, Moscow,
performed by local troupe Zoetic Stage,
from Sunday, April 1 through Sunday,
April 15. Tickets cost $40. Go to www.
arshtcenter.org for details.

Compiled by BT arts editor Anne Tschida.
Please send information and images to

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com 79

April 2012


Biscayne Crime Beat

Compiled by Derek McCann

Brazen Robbery Leads to Lame
1000 Block oJ i: .i ,i,.. Boulevard
It's one thing to take giant risks while
stealing from your victims, but at least
have a back-up plan should things go
awry. This perpetrator entered a gas
station and began taking money from the
cash register. The sales clerk tackled him
when he tried to make his exit, as did a
customer. (There are good Samaritans,
even in Miami.). Police were flagged
down and they arrested the man, confis-
cating $500 from his pockets. What was
the man's alibi? "I was hungry." Guess
he was heading to Romeo's Caf6 for a
six-course meal. He'll have to settle for

powdered egg-salad sandwiches at the
county jail.

Disgruntled Maytag Repairman
Making a House Call?
100 Block ofNE 69th Street
An apartment was ransacked to the
point where all appliances, including
the refrigerator and stove, went miss-
ing. Giant holes were made in the walls
as the thieves attempted to steal copper
wire. Fortunately no one was hurt as the
dwelling was unoccupied. The apart-
ment has no alarm or video surveillance.
Though there were no obvious valuables
in plain sight, this is a cold lesson to
Boulevard residents. Miami burglars will
steal anything. And everything.

No Eating, Drinking, or Sleeping
on the Bus
N. Miami Avenue and NE 4th Street
One really needs a car in Miami. We
gather this poor chap was exhausted by
not only having to wait for the bus, but
also by sitting in it. He had a black leather
briefcase, which he rested between his
legs as he took a little nap. When he
awakened, his briefcase was gone, which
essentially contained his life: Florida ID,
Social Security card, Medicaid card, and
bus pass. Espresso probably should be
included with that two-dollar fare.

You Know, There's Another
Possibility Here...
2400 Block of Miami Avenue
A towing company towed a red Honda
scooter. Two weeks later, two juvenile
males were caught on-camera breaking
the lock on the back gate of the towing
company and entering the premises. The
mystery duo took the scooter and drove


off. Since the VIN number on the bike was
unreadable, it was never entered into the
system. Towing employees are generally a
surly lot, but we guess that insolence does
not translate into a concern for security.

Last Call in Little River
2 NE 79th St.
When you have too much to drink at a
bar, the bartender usually asks you to
leave. This person likely just left an area


design print adverse communicate

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com April 2012

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

bar and burst into a gas station. He shouted
profanities at the customers and employ-
ees, grabbed two beer bottles, then tried
to make his way out of the store without
paying for them. When he was intercepted,
he angrily threw the bottles to the floor,
shattering them. Returning to the cooler,
he fished out another couple of bottles and
took the time to drink them. He refused
to pay and threatened the store clerk by
breaking the door to the cashier's office.
By chance, at that moment, a police car
pulled up to the gas station. The officers
promptly arrested him.

A Slippery Scenario
7900 Block oJ i':,.. I ic.- Boulevard
Business owners are conditioned to
accept different scenarios, terrible as
some of them may be: broken doors, graf-
fiti, stolen cash registers, even food stolen
from the fridge. This business owner
arrived at his establishment and saw that
the waste-oil container had been turned
upside down, spilling its contents all over
the floor. That's a lot of dirty cleanup.
There are no suspects, but a bunch of oily
employees who now must prep the after-
noon lunch for their customers.

Dressed to Steal
1100 Block ofNE 147th Street
Victim arrived home and saw that the
dresser in his bedroom was rocking back and
forth. Was there an earthquake occurring
in North Miami? Items were falling on the
floor. Maybe it was a storm. Better close that
window, which had been foolishly left open
Oops. Behind the dresser, trying to get into
the house through the open window, was a
male hoodlum. He ran away when the victim
saw him. Crime Beat advises that, if you see
your furniture moving, it could be paranor-
mal activity, an unlikely seismic event, or
your lovable North Miami criminals.

Where There's Smoke, There's
AK-47 Fire
1000 Block ofNE 126th Street
A couple was entering their apartment
when they saw three suspicious males in
the hallway, smoking cigarettes. Once they
put their key in the lock, the males burst
upon them, armed with AK-47 assault
rifles. They forced the couple into the
apartment and demanded money. Two of
the assailants wore ski masks, the other
had a shirt around his head. They locked
one victim in the closet. They managed to

steal a purse containing $450 in currency,
credit cards, and a cell phone. No arrests
have been made at press time. We strongly
advise North Miami residents to be
aware of their surroundings, even if those
surroundings are your home. Sorry, but
cigarette smokers are always suspicious.

For Rent: One Very Unfurnished
1500 Block ofNE 132nd Road
Tenant was in the process of moving out and
had already turned in his keys to the landlord.
However, the tenant returned for unfinished
business. He had some personal belongings
he inadvertently had left inside the unit. In
lieu of contacting the landlord and setting
up a time to pick them up, he pried open the
door, took his personal items, and, for good
measure, took the refrigerator. Guess he
doesn't care about his deposit. If you're in
the market for a North Miami rental, please
check to see that the kitchen is fully outfitted.
While you're at it check to see if the toilet is
still there. We're just saying.

Yet Another Argument for a
Checking Account
5800 Block ofNE 2ndAvenue

A man was walking down NE 2nd
Avenue when he was threatened by a
Boulevard thug. The thug reached into
the man's shorts and pulled out a wallet
containing $500 in cash. The victim
grabbed the man's arm, but he managed
to get away. Victim told police that he
knows the suspect; he is likely home-
less, and hangs out in the area. Read-
ers, unless you're going to pay ladies to
dance on your lap, please refrain from
carrying cash like that around.

Withdrawn Bandit Fails to Make
2000 Block oJ i: .ic .. ,' Boulevard
Dillinger wasn't shy, so why should our
Miami scumbags be any different? Well, this
man was. A would-be robber entered a bank
and passed a note to the teller. The writing
on the note was illegible, so the teller asked
for clarification, to which the man replied in
a very low, almost inaudible voice: "Gimme
the money." The teller was unimpressed and
walked away from her station to tell the bank
manager. The suspect fled. Even criminals
need assertiveness training.

Feedback: letters@ibbiscaynetimes.com

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April 2012 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

Columnists: PARK PATROL

Sweet Signs of Success

Bay Harbor Islands has some very nice street markers, and a
couple of hidden parks

By Jim W. Harper
BT Contributor

Next time you come to a stop
sign in Bay Harbor Islands,
make sure you come to a com-
plete stop and check out that sign.
The isle has exquisite, gleaming-in-the-
sun stop signs.
No flimsy aluminum foil here.
These sturdy, industrial beauties on
jet-black lacquered poles harken back
to the glory days of Henry Flagler's
railroad, when the Vanderbilts and
Rockefellers stepped into Florida's sun-
drenched landscape for the first time
and threw money at it.
While conforming to the traditional
red octagon design, the other elements
of the town's stop signs display cunning
and uniqueness. The street name banners
on top, in cobalt blue, sport rounded
edges, and counterbalancing the requi-
site text is a circular cutout of the town's
logo. It really lets you know where you
are. The black "ironclad" posts, not
merely poles, echo the nearby Parisian-
style street lamps.

Walking around one of the signs, one
is struck by the perfect, jet-black, stick-
figure silhouette of post and sign. This
little black sign stands ready for the red
carpet brought to you by Graphplex
Signs, located in nearby Hollywood.
But then, Bay Harbor Islands gives
good signage all around. This year it
installed a welcome sign that greets visi-
tors arriving from the beachside towns
of Surfside and Bal Harbour at a cost of
approximately $4000, according to the
town's assistant manager, J.C. Jimenez.
This oversize white headstone with
the town's logo is overpowered, rightly
so, by the string of mature royal palms
down the center of Kane Concourse,
the town's 96th Street business district.
This section of town will soon have stop
signs to equal those on the west side,
says Jimenez.
The concourse's tidy medians fea-
ture two noteworthy, brightly colored
sculptures, both of which were donated
to the town: the older blue and red piece,
Love, by Robert Indiana (one of two
in Florida), and the instantly recogniz-
able 2006 Heart by local artist Romero

W _-

One of Bay Harbor Islands' two passive parks, this one just big enough
to toss a Frisbee.

Britto. While the former reminds
me of Love Park in the center of
Philadelphia, the latter is flat-out
South Beach.
Bay Harbor Islands is a town
in between. Close to the beach,
but not on it. Not as rich as Bal
Harbour, but nowhere near as poor
as North Miami (which lies to
the west, on the other side of the
Broad Causeway).
These manmade islands
offer prime waterfront real estate.
Parkland must have been an
afterthought, though, as the town
barely offers two acres to serve
its more than 5000 residents. (But,
then, the beach and the bay are
within walking distance.) Britl
Bay Harbor Islands sits sen1
like an upscale pair of kidneys
snuggled along the coast, with one
short bridge connecting it to the
beach, and the much longer Broad
Causeway to the mainland. The east-
ern kidney has two small parks that
allow dogs, while the purely residen-
tial (single-family homes) western
kidney has a modern tot lot next to
the bridge and two so-called passive
parks at its northern and southern
dead ends.
These passive parks are where I
admired the stop signs, but then I saw
another sign that stopped me cold. A
small, rectangular marker that lists
rules for the town's parks had been
altered by a piece of fading white
tape, so that it read, "May we remind
you that use or possession of alcohol,

to's 2006 Heart: Public art of the
timental sort.

drugs, and firxxx ... is not permitted."
Did that say firearms?
It used to. Firearms now are permit-
ted in all parks in Florida, thanks to a
state law passed in 1987. That law was
reinforced this past October when all
local rules limiting gun ownership were
shot dead, thanks to Florida's Firearms
Preemption Statute.
Bay Harbor Islands is just one of
many municipalities in Florida trying to
avoid getting sued by the gun lobby. The
sticky, white tape is not evident on some
signs, so it is clear exactly what the sign
and the town originally intended to say.
The northern passive park has a
small sign stating that no dogs are al-
lowed, despite the presence of several
dark green "Dogi-Pot" dog-business bag

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.comApril 2012


Park Rating

B.aI H.arbor I) .la iI
Hours: N A
Picnic i.ibl),: No
B.irlecic': No
Piciiic pa. ilioii: No
Tenni courtli: No
Atlillric lic ol: No
Niulit liulihinu: Ykes
S iiiinin.), pool: No
Pla I.I u ,lr,1 d: No

s y
a ^

Shalie Coliour-e


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

dispensers (with instructions), which
make it appear dog-friendly. Dogs
cannot go on the grass here.
Perhaps the dog rule is for the sake
of the invisible children. A yellow, dia-
mond-shaped sign shows two stick-figure
children playing on a seesaw, but there is
no equipment here, and the tot lot play-
ground is a mile away. I, for one, do not
recognize the seesaw as the international
sign for children playing; for all I know,
this sign could indicate that the scales of
justice are out of balance.
Assistant Manager J.C. Jimenez
estimates the size of this passive park
at about a quarter of an acre, with the
southern passive park measuring closer
to a half-acre. While both passive parks
have a mature shade tree with a white
concrete bench underneath, only the
southern park is large enough for toss-
ing a Frisbee.
Last year the parks were "tidied
up a bit," says Jimenez, and new
ramps were installed to comply with
Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)
regulations. The landscaping offers a
mix of young and old, mostly exotic
plants, and sections are highlighted by

Exquisitely sturdy stop signs
harken back to a bygone era.

an intermittent white wood fence.
The southern park does an excellent
job of hiding a large utility box behind
the bushes. I didn't see it until I had
nearly stepped on it.
These are still some bits of trash
that need removal, such as the yellow
police tape clinging to one tree in the

northern park, and some silver Mardi
Gras beads stuck on a short plant in the
southern park. The northern park was
also a bit trashier.
These passive parks are what I like
to call the medians of the one percent.
Look around at the lovely homes along
the bay and you will recognize that Bay

4M r *maw er.. P mr

.. .,
I --S - ..-:.

I ._a -.. -

Notice the peeling tape muted
consent to pack heat in parks.

Harbor Islands, kidneys in the stream,
is a town fixated on the thing you can
barely see and most of us certainly can't
touch: the waterfront.
But the stop signs? Oh, those stop
signs. Those you can definitely touch.

Feedback: letters(@biscaynetimes.com

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April 2012


Addressing Doggie


Solving your pet's behavioral issues requires doing some real work

By Lisa Hartman
BT Contributor

Certainly there are many great
things dog owners do to advance
their dogs' behavioral processes.
But many times it's the owners' own
habits that help create the dog they have
today. Here are some typical behavior
patterns of dog-owning humans that
should be addressed.
Sweeping problems under the
rug. A common hope of many owners
is that a dog will grow out of a problem
in time. Rarely does this happen, and in
fact problems usually only get worse if
left unchecked. Barking, for example, is
a problem I've seen many owners hope

will magically go away one day.
What happens, though, is that dogs
learn to bark more often and for longer
periods of time. There are many reasons
dogs bark: watchdog tendencies, fear,
excitement, attention, and boredom.
Regardless of the reason, at some
point a human can't take it anymore and
snaps, giving the dog what he wants at
that moment: attention.
Even if you don't know exactly why
the dog is barking, every effort should be
made to put a stop to incessant barking
before you have an ingrained problem.
Hoping a fearful or timid barking
dog will just get better over time could
be a huge liability down the road. Fear-
ful or shy dogs put in a fearful situation

can eventually
become aggressive in
an attempt to protect
Of course, it
isn't always easy for
the human to deter-
mine what is scary
for a dog. Often it's
something the owner
would never have
suspected, such as a
sweet, well-behaved
four-year-old girl.
Whether it's the
child's smiling face,
her high-pitched
voice, or the fact the
child is just very
interested in the dog or a handful of
other reasons it doesn't make sense to
the humans.
Without addressing the issue proper-
ly, the dog could eventually snap or bite
the child as a defense mechanism, decide

that all little girls are scary, or hide as a
possible way to cope.
Puppy behaviors are other common
areas owners hope will sort themselves
out without intervention. "We were
hoping he would grow out of it," I often

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com April 2012

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

hear. Jumping on guests, nipping, and
chewing up the house aren't adorable
when the adult-size version of the puppy
(with adult strength) is doing it.
Many owners deal with the problem
by locking the dog in another room,
away from guests, or crating it all day so
it can't destroy the home. In either case,
the dog isn't learning a proper greeting
or response and isn't being chew-toy
This scenario usually ends with the
dog being quarantined more and more
and having fewer socialization and ex-
ercise opportunities with other dogs and
family members, which, in turn, leads to
more stress and problems later in life.
The owners may also lose their bond
with their dog, eventually feel less love
for it, and in some cases, decide to give
up the dog to a shelter.
Resorting to fear tactics. Look-
ing for a quick fix to a problem situa-
tion, many people try to scare the dog
into not behaving a certain way: shock
collars for dogs leaving the yard, citro-
nella-blasting collars for barking, and a
plethora of other archaic inventions too
easy for an owner to buy in a store and

use incorrectly. (In my opinion, they
shouldn't be used at all.)
For years people have searched for
that magic diet pill or workout machine
to do all the weight-loss work for them.
Grapefruit regimens or diet pills are
always shown to be ineffective in the
long run, with potentially dangerous
and unhealthy side effects. The same
holds true for
fear-based or
punishment- Looking for a quick
based training
based training try to scare the d(
It may a cert
appear to
owners that
a problem is
being addressed the moment they use a
particular device or tactic ("suppression
of behavior"), but in actuality, the prob-
lem may be multiplied threefold: The
dog may be more fearful after a startle
device is used, may learn to fear or dis-
trust their owner, or associate the issue
being addressed (say, fear of children)
with the punishment.
In all of these cases, humans are
going for the quick fix, but unfortunately


are only dealing with symptoms not
the root cause. This has been shown to
lead to Jekyll-and-Hyde behavior; the
dog is quiet or "good" when the punish-
ment device is around. But having to
deal with the stress of the punishment
over time could make a monster out of
the animal.
The dog has still not addressed his
fear and, many
times, the
fix, many people dog is now
worse with
into not behaving wore
new problems
n way. added. As
with weight
loss, the
healthiest way
to work with animals in the long run is
exercise and a practical diet of positive
training (which tells the dog what you
Reinforcing bad behavior. If I had
a dime for every time I saw an owner
commend a dog for a job poorly done, I
would be a very wealthy woman.
You have all seen it: The little dog
snaps and growls at someone and the
owner scoops it up into their arms and

tells him: "It's okay," as she gives the
dog a pat on the back! Ever wonder why
certain behavior never goes away in dogs
that have been told that things are "okay"
hundreds of times? It's because the
owner gives it attention and a reassuring
pat when it acts out.
I see this more than usual now with
owners of large dogs. They snuggle with
their pets after they charge a bicyclist or
lunge after another dog.
As with any problem, the best course
of action is to not have a problem from
the start. Socializing, training, exercis-
ing, and fostering an enriching and in-
teresting life are all key elements to the
mental and physical health of any dog.
But when problems do arise, addressing
them quickly before they escalate -
is the fastest and easiest way to resolve

Lisa Hartman is a dog-friendly trainer,
behavior specialist, and author of Dial
a Dynamite Dog. You can reach her at
'! t i, l .. 'l,/. .. ,. .com, or visit

Feedback: letters@ibiscaynetimes.com

www.PelicanHarbor.orgI BISCAYNE 4[ I I
Api 201 Biscayne ^ Tie www.iscyneime I

Smiling Pets

Veterinary Clinic

April 2012

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Columnists: YOUR GARDEN

Springtime Wisdom
Soft-wood trees, construction projects, and Cuban-style conservation

By Jeff Shimonski
BT Contributor
his warm and occasionally rainy
winter has certainly encouraged
many of our flowering trees to put
on a colorful show. Some trees, like the
purple-flowered Hong Kong orchid and
the other colored orchids, have been in
bloom for months.
Yes, the Bauhinias are soft-wooded
trees and can easily break up in a storm,
and some of the different species may even
tend to be a bit invasive, but when man-
aged properly, they can be the highlight of
a landscape for several months out of the
year. Some of them even have a delightful
fragrance along with their showy flowers.
The bright orange flowers of African
tulip trees can be seen in many older
landscapes, especially when driving on
the raised sections of 1-95. The contrast
of the orange flowers against the dark
green foliage is very eye-catching.
These trees get quite tall, are soft-
wooded, and tend to get blown over in
hurricanes, so they need to be properly
managed. By proper management, I'm
speaking of a good planting location, a
plant with good branch and root struc-
ture, and a maintenance program that
includes proper and regular pruning.

I was talking to a guy recently who
was going to develop a piece of property
that was filled with trees ranging from
good condition to poor. He needed a tree
survey to get a permit to develop the

property and asked for a written plan
regarding the work that would be neces-
sary to clean up the site.
Several bids were solicited and ap-
parently all were close to the same price.
What concerned me was the fact that he
asked each arborist to "value engineer"
their bid to get a better price.
Well, the survey is the survey, and
what is done is dictated by municipal
regulation. What can be done to clear out
and "enhance" the property from a horti-
cultural standpoint is another thing.
With mature trees on site, a com-
pany that will come in at the lowest
bid will not likely care (or perhaps
even know) about future root or trunk
damage caused by equipment that will
be working at maximum speed. The
cheapest company also will not likely
be concerned about soil compaction and
subsequent root damage.
All of this will begin to be noticed
about a year or two later, when large
trees begin to die. Parts of the canopy
of these trees will begin to die back and
everyone will wonder what is happening.
I don't know how many times I've
watched a site being developed with
large, mature, healthy trees growing next
to all of the construction work, with only
tiny, plastic fences around them to "pro-
tect" them so they can continue growing
after the construction is finished.
Most of these trees die within a few
years. That is a shame! Why even bother
going through the motions of pretending
to protect these trees when no competent
arborist is monitoring them throughout

More color in our spring landscape: The diminutive bromeliad Aechmea
pineliana in bloom.

the construction process?
What is even more of a shame is
when a property is developed and then
sold to an unsuspecting buyer who
thinks the trees are a great asset, only
to have them die within a couple of
years. The new owner then has to go
to the same municipality that approved
the building plans that killed the trees
in the first place and pay to get a permit
in order to remove the dying or already
dead trees. Buyer beware.

I recently added a charming little book
called The Glossary ofCuban Woods to
my library. It was published in 1947. (I
enjoy reading old books like this.) Many of
the Cuban trees mentioned in the book are
also found in our local landscapes.
Common names were given, too. Ceiba
pentandra, the silk floss tree, is called Santa
Maria; Swietenia mahagoni, our common
mahogany, is called caoba; and red man-
grove is called mangle colorado.
What was really interesting were
the laws and decrees enacted by the
Cuban Ministry of Agriculture to

protect certain species of trees and
enable the reforestation of both national
and private woodlands.
Decree number 1434 of September 24,
1923, for example, disallowed the cutting
of red mangrove, or mangle colorado,
along the coast. Decree number 772 of
May 24, 1923 (confirmed by the Cuban
Congress as a national law and published
in the Gaceto Oficial), prohibited the cut-
ting of royal palms and fruit trees.
Another decree stipulated that the
trees listed could not be totally destroyed.
They could be cut, but only partially, and
under certain conditions even this would
require the planting of three specimens
of the same kind of tree for each one cut.
Maybe the City of Miami should
incorporate some of these decrees into
its tree code.

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

Feedback: letters(ibiscaynetimes.com

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April 2012


The Aftermath:

September 18, 1926
A view of our past from the archives of HistoryMiami

By Paul S. George
Special to the BT
he destructiveness of Miami's
1926 hurricane is evident in this
photograph of a ravaged W. Fla-
gler Street on September 18, the morn-
ing after the storm. The neighborhood
shown here is today's East Little Havana,
known initially as Riverside.
With winds in excess of 130 miles
per hour, the storm, the worst to hit
Miami until Hurricane Andrew in 1992,
demolished the facades and windows

of the buildings in the
left-hand side of the
photograph. Interestingly,
this housing stock is still
standing, with the taller,
three-story structure,
built shortly before the
hurricane, known as the
Beramar Apartments.
The storm's path took it west
through this area, placing Flagler Street
and nearby arteries under water for
days. The hurricane also caused thou-
sands of Miamians to become homeless

and proved to be the final ingredient
in transforming an unprecedented real
estate boom into a protracted bust that
Greater Miami and the region was
unable to shake off till the second half of
the 1930s.

To order a copy of this photo, please
contact HistoryMiami archives manager
Dawn Hugh at 305-375-1623, dhugh@
historymiami. org

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- ..e Csnl Medisuca n.d Duifed Bra's btneauuocmr HeidHaf pernm
AsuiA-aan t.-~- La ar ri*Me.AslIf rrB~e i FaAsEf

April 2012

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

Columnists: GOING GREEN

How Green Is Your April?

Earth Month is a good time to take stock personally and publically

By Jim W. Harper
BT Contributor

Earth Day arrives April 22, and Earth
Month is already here, so now is the
time to make your environmental
resolutions. What is your wish? Do you
want to feel more connected to nature?
Learn how to conserve water? Shame your
neighbors for failing to recycle?
The plans you make and the goals
you set today clarify your intentions to
act tomorrow. Such individual actions
are paramount in the mandate "Think
globally, act locally."
But in between the global move-
ments and personal actions are the city,
county, and regional entities that guide
our future. You may be surprised to dis-
cover that many local governments and
associations have moved beyond merely
thinking about, to actually creating,
committees and publishing documents
that embody their plans for sustainability.
Our communal plans are in order.
Good news! Studies of local green-
house gas emissions and water consumption
show that rates have been on the decline for
years. The simple explanation also evi-
dent on a national level is the economy,
stupid. People drive less when they can't
afford gas, and they use less electricity
when they can't pay their utility bill. In
short, the recession has reduced waste.
This decline also demonstrates that
small, household actions, like shutting
off the lights and the water faucet when
those things are not being used, really do

add up. But will we automatically return
to being more wasteful as we become
more prosperous?
There's a plan for that, too. According
to the Southeast Florida Regional Climate
Change Compact, which pools data from
Broward, Miami-Dade, Monroe, and Palm
Beach counties, greenhouse gas emissions
peaked in 2006 at more than 70 million
metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalents
(a standardized measurement) and by 2009
had fallen to less than 65 million tons.
Although very high when compared to
international standards, these levels rank
lower than national and even state averages,
most likely because the mild climate here
does not require home heating.
Currently this committee is polish-
ing their 2012 report. Titled "A Region
Responds to a Changing Climate," also
called "Climate Change Action Plan,"
the report states: "The overall objective
was and remains to integrate climate
adaptation and mitigation into existing
systems and to develop a plan that can
be implemented through existing local
and regional organizations. It is in that
spirit that this plan provides the common
integrated framework for a stronger and
more resilient Southeast Florida starting
today and for tomorrow."
Clearly Southeast Florida needs
coordination, as its population of 5.6
million (2010 census) makes it larger
than most states.
A document called GreenPrint
articulates a plan (through 2015) for Mi-
ami-Dade and its 2.5 million residents to

meet the larger, primary goal of achiev-
ing an 80-percent reduction in green-
house gas emissions by 2050 (based on
2008 levels). Yes, 80 percent! That target
comes from a national program called
Cool Counties. That's really, really cool.
The 200-page GreenPrint calls for
annual reports based on its scorecard, and
its first annual scores are expected soon.
With seven focus areas in the scorecard
and 137 sustainability initiatives across
the document, this plan leaves little room
for waffling. By 2015, GreenPrint expects
the county to have reduced greenhouse
gas emissions by 1.5 million metric tons.
Someone else is watching and waiting
for the results. The international organiza-
tion Local Governments for Sustainability
(ICLEI) in 2009 selected Miami-Dade as
one of only three communities in the U.S.
to pilot its sustainability planning tool-kit
program. The ICLEI member municipali-
ties within Miami-Dade are Miami, North
Miami, Miami Gardens, Cutler Bay,
Pinecrest, and South Miami.
While many local cities have
launched their own green initiatives, the
question remains: Are these plans just
gathering toxic dust? Let's take a peek.
The City of Miami's formal sustain-
ability document, MiPlan, produced in
2008, focuses on climate change mitiga-
tion. City government operations plan to
reduce their greenhouse gas emissions 25

percent below 2007 levels (82,414 metric
tons of carbon dioxide equivalents) by
2015. For the entire city, the goal is also
25 percent reductions, from a 2006 level
of 4.8 million metric tons to the improved
level of 3.6 million metric tons by 2020.
Without reductions, the city predicts
that it will reach a level of 5.7 million
metric tons by 2020. The city runs the
Miami Office of Sustainable Initiatives
and has an extensive Website.
(Other municipalities within our
area appear to have little more than
"billboard" Websites that link to other
environmental Websites, but they are
welcome to write a letter to the editor
and point out otherwise.)
What are your plans for making this
month greener? Here are some local options:
Baynanza: Events all month, in-
cluding the 30th annual Biscayne Bay
Cleanup Day on April 21.
Dream in Green: April 13 fundraiser.
Sustainatopia: April 19-25
Ecomb: April 20 Green-raiser.
National Arbor Day: April 27.
Remember: Don't just think environ-
mentally. Act.

Send your tips and clever ideas to: go-
..Fee 0 letters. i. .. scaynet. c,.

Feedback: letters(ibiscaynetimes.com

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1I I^^ ^ ^ ^^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ _

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April 2012


Don't Sweat the Sex Talk

Kids are naturally curious about where babies come from, so deal
with it

By Crystal Brewe
BT Contributor

hen the baby has to dig out of
a hole in the garden and the
bird puts the baby under the
mommy's pillow!" This was overheard
on the playground a couple weeks back
coming from my daughter's four-year-old
pal. I suppose it's better than some ver-
sions of how babies are born, but I found
myself somewhat irked by the misin-
formation that was being relayed to my
wide-eyed three-year-old.
Thinking back to my own awkward
lack of sex education, I vowed that my kids
would have a healthy understanding of, and
comfort level with, this subject and that we
would never avoid a "teachable moment."
I was relegated to sneaking my sex
education from Are You There, God? It's
Me, Margaret and some frighteningly
inappropriate neighborhood kids. At the
age of 12, my folks gave me an anatomy
doll for Christmas (joy!) and left the
room when I took it out of the box.
Even parents who are never at a loss for
words grow speechless and uneasy when
the subject of sex comes up. How do you
respond to something like this: "Emma told
me that you have a baby in your tummy
because Daddy peed on you!" or "Why does
the dog always do that to our leg?"
Answering your kids' questions about
sex is your responsibility as a parent,

although the very idea of discussing "why
there is hair there" and ho"\ ilull baby
got in there" can be dreaded more than
broken limbs and calls from the principal.
"Stick to the science," my nerdy
husband always says. He's right. We've
found success so far with simple and
age-appropriate answers to the questions.
We use anatomical words, like "puber-
ty," "conception," "vagina," "penis," and
offer accurate information.
When Matilda, our seven-year-old,
first started inquiring, we dipped our pro-
verbial toe into the conversation and then,
after putting her to sleep, we Googled,
YouTubed, and Amazoned for answers on
the best approach. After reading 40,000
blogs, reviews, and links, we felt like
experts and hatched a plan. (What did
parents do before the Internet?)
On our cyber pilgrimage, we discov-
ered the best book on early "facts of life"
education: Boys, Girls, and Body Science:
A First BookAbout Facts of Life. This
book uses humor (which is complemen-
tary to the inevitable giggles and "yucks"
that go hand-in-hand with this subject)
and provides no-nonsense answers for
kids' questions that can dovetail nicely
into comfortable conversations.
It's written as a fictional story that
begins with characters Nicholas and Jenny
learning about different types of science in
their class. From ecology to the digestive
system, they discuss the "science names"

and then move on through conception
and childbirth. "Meg," the kids' teacher,
coaches children not to be embarrassed or
shy about the subject.
The other day I heard a woman in
the grocery store bellow to her four-
year-old: "Stop touching your ding dong.
That's just nasty!"
Geez, I thought, as I had a flash-for-
ward of that poor kid in college and the
possible self-loathing sexuality he would
A knee-jerk reaction to your child's
curiosity or natural tendencies can lead
them to feelings of shame that last long
after your momentary discomfort or
Recently a friend of mine discovered
that her seven-year-old daughter and
friend were getting all Annie Leibovitz
with their new camera. There were shots
of them as princesses, rock stars and -
oh! of them naked.
After the adrenaline coursed through
her veins with the horrible thought that
someone else had taken the photos, she
realized the kids were just exploring and
took them of each other. The girls, who
were just having fun, didn't think through
the ramifications of naked photos being
found by untrustworthy hands.

Many parents can overreact when they
witness or hear of a situation like this. My
friend seized the opportunity to explain
that, while she understood their interest
in the body, it is expected that bodies stay
covered when playing together. She set
limits and avoided feelings of guilt.
Later, when the daughter's friend
went home, she used the opportunity
to teach her child about good touch and
bad touch, a conversation every parent
should initiate with their children.
It's amazing how many parents ponder
the question: "How old should a child be
before we start talking about sex?" The
answer is: "As soon as they start asking."
The "big talk" is so last millennium. If
you can make it a discussion instead of a
long, canned birds-and-bees lecture, it will
become a series of conversations spread
out over the years. You'll find that your
child is satisfied with a little information
at a time, and you'll always be the go-to
person, not a classmate or another relative.
If you open the lines of communica-
tion early and practice being an ap-
proachable parent, you'll have offered
your child and yourself an extraordinari-
ly cherished gift that will last a lifetime.

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April 2011

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Columnists: VINO

Low-Cost Whites That

Won't Tax Your Palate

Red, white, and you: Agreeable wine for $12 or less

By Bill Citara
BT Contributor
wo things, they say, are certain in
this world. Death and taxes.
To those we can probably
add one more: You'll need a drink after
paying your taxes. But that's okay, at
least the drinking part, because Vino
has got you covered. In fact, to celebrate
everybody's least favorite day April
15 we're going even cheaper than
usual, reducing our already skinflint
$12-a-bottle price limit by two bucks. A
few months back, we harvested a banner
crop of El Cheapo reds; now we're doing
the same for whites.
And not a moment too soon, from
what I've been hearing. Recently I've
been talking to some folks deep in the
wine biz, owners and winemakers, and
they're telling me the glut of good juice
that's kept prices down and good, inex-
pensive wine flowing, has pretty much
dried up. There are still plenty of players
in the affordable-wine market, but it's
going to be tougher and more expensive
for them to get the juice they need, so
enjoy the good deals while you can.
And speaking of good deals...
This is a deal so good you need to
take advantage of it right now. Don't brush
your teeth or comb your hair or change
out of yourjammies, just get in your car
and scream over to the nearest Total Wine
and buy as much of the 2009 Daisy Chain

Marie's White as your (after-tax) pock-
etbook will allow. I can't really tell you
anything about it, except that it's made in
Central California and is a blend of Char-
donnay, Viognier, and Riesling.
Oh, and did I mention the price?
Four bucks a bottle. For that, you get a
wine that's perfect for everyday drinking,
lushly aromatic with scents of tropical
fruit and just-bloomed flowers, rich and
creamy and ever-so-slightly sweet on the
palate, tasting of ripe mangoes, peaches,
and pears, with a long lemon-lime finish.
It's a fine match with spicy Asian or
Mexican dishes, and would be ideal for
your next backyard barbecue.
It shows you what a bargain the
Daisy Chain is that a wine like Merid-
ian's 2010 California Chardonnay, at
$7.99, is only a good deal, not a great one.
Don't let that stop you, though, because
the Meridian is a very nice wine for the
money. Done in the classic rich 'n' creamy
California style, with lots of tropical fruit,
pear, apricot, and vanilla flavors, it earns
more points for keeping all that lushness
in check with a welcome citrus-pineapple
acidity that carries through to a smooth,
lingering finish. Even if you're not a fan
of big, fruity California Chardonnays, I
think you'll like this wine, which would
make a very pleasant partner to roasted
chicken, veal dishes, and almost any kind
of cream-sauced pasta.
Two more wines also earn spots
on my Beat the Tax Bite list. The 2010

Two of the tasting's best wines, the Daisy Chain and Dry Creek, are
available at the North Miami Total Wine & More (14750 Biscayne Blvd.,
305-354-3270), the Dry Creek for $9.99 and the Daisy Chain (which was
$6.99) for a saintly $3.99. The equally fine Antinori Orvieto can be found
at the North Miami Beach ABC Fine Wine & Spirits (16355 Biscayne Blvd.,
305-944-6525) for $8.99, while the Bufani Pinot Grigio goes for $7.99. The
Meridian Chardonnay costs all of $7.99 at the Biscayne Commons Publix
(14641 Biscayne Blvd., 305-354-2171). And at the North Miami Crown
Wine and Spirits (12555 Biscayne Blvd., 305-892-9463), the Los Vascos

Sauvignon Blanc is priced at $9.97.

Antinori Campogrande Santa Cristina
Orvieto is a perennial winner, display-
ing the consistent quality and user-
friendliness for which this Italian wine
behemoth is known. You'll get whiffs of
citrus and pears and melons when you
first pop a bottle, then flavors of lemons
and limes and green apples, with a hint
of apricot richness. Well made, well bal-
anced, and well priced at $8.99.
The other nice-priced wine that
always has a place on my table is this
year's vintage (2010) of Dry Creek
Clarksburg Chenin Blanc. Where the
Antinori promises more luxury in the
nose than in the mouth, the Dry Creek
comes off at first as a little austere, with
lemony, grapefruity, mineral aromas.

But it gains fullness on the palate, en-
riching its tangy citrus flavors with those
of peach and pear and apricot. I served it
with a roasted chicken stuffed under the
skin with sprigs of fresh rosemary and it
was as ideal a complement to the bird as
the cluck.
Two other wines were better, though
not in our top four. The 2010 Los Vascos
Sauvignon Blanc was aggressively tart
and mineral, more like a Muscadet than
the typical Chilean SB. And the Angelo
Bufani 2010 Pinot Grigio was as simple
and inoffensive as it was ultimately
forgettable, though it was, in fact, far
preferable to both death and taxes.

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April 2012

Columnists: DIBB

Good News: More

Openings Than Closings

In the restaurant business, it's too often the other way around

By Pamela Robin Brandt
BT Contributor

become to our brand-new restau-
rant column! Now we have a way
to bring you timely material we
can't work into the "Dining Guide," mate-
rial such as restaurant openings and closings,
chef shuffles, significant menu changes, food-
related special events, farmers markets, and
much more. Send us your tips: restaurants@
biscaynetimes.com. Okay, here we go!

Piazzetta Marketplace and Restau-
rant (17875 Collins Ave., 305-918-6816).
You have to love it when resort restaurants,
which generally walk the middle of the road,
get creative. And it doesn't get much more
creative than Acqualina's new casual-chic
restaurant/Italian market (formerly Aaria, a
beachfront bar), which bills itself as a trip
to a "little market square" on the Riviera -
but which, along with impeccable imported
salumi, truffled taleggio pizzas, and hearty
second, serves up sushi. Good times.
Florin (3620 NE 2nd Ave., 786-953-
5001). As zero Internet chat attests, the
late-January opening of this dessert caf6-tea
house-market was one most Miamians
missed. Chocolatier and pastry chef Grazia
Maggi and artist Rinaldo Malvermi, the
young proprietors, admit they aren't so great
at public relations. But they excel at creat-
ing mouthwatering housemade chocolates
(many incorporating edible flowers), and

European-inspired pastries. Artistic packag-
ing also makes their goodies, including
100-percent organic teas, great gifts.
NiDo. Caffe & Mozzarella Bar (7295
Biscayne Blvd., 305-960-7022). The sign
above the door still says "Caf6," a remnant of
former French tenant Le Caf6. But the fare is
now Italian, featuring homemade mozzarella
and pastas from Luca Taretto (ex-exec chef of
South Beach's Tiramisu). A small market area
sells creamy mozzarella and burrata cheeses,
salumi, and Italian staples like truffle oil.
Namaste (7420 Biscayne Blvd., 786-
536-9050). Inexpensive traditional north-
ern Indian food, with some south Indian
street food surprises, such as dosas, rice/
lentil flour wraps, and thicker idli disks.
Wine Vault Miami (3201 N. Miami
Ave. #105; 786-691-2000). The official Grand
Opening celebration is at 5:30 p.m., April 20,
in The Shops of Midtown's Fountain Plaza.
When this expansive wine/tapas bar actually
opened, quietly: January 26. Owner Michael
Shapira wanted room to evolve. Recent menu
evolution: bacon "tapas" dipped in chocolate!
John Paul's House (2426 NE 2nd
Ave., 305-573-7373). From chef Jean Paul
Desmaison, original co-owner of Coral
Gables' La Cofradia, who split from his
business partner there two years ago. His
new venture, in the house formerly home
to Out of the Blue Caf6, has relatively high
prices for its iffy neighborhood, but the
Peruvian-influenced, North and South
American dishes are elegant, and the ambi-
ance warmly romantic.

Piazzetta Marketplace and Restaurant

First & First Southern Baking
Company, downtown Miami.

Giraffas is scheduled to open April 27
in the Shops at Midtown Miami, the second
U.S. location for this stylish Brazilian fast/
casual chain. The seven-month-old flagship
is in North Miami (see Dining Guide).
A less certain but possible April opening:
Sushi chef Kevin Cory's much-anticipated
update of his critically acclaimed hideaway
Naoe, which closed this past November,
owing to the planned demolition of its Sunny
Isles Beach strip-mall home. His new, larger
location, whose planned February opening
was delayed by architectural flummoxes, has
an address (661 Brickell Key Dr.) and a new
moniker, which Cory says "is secret for now."
(Hint from the chef: "The landlord requires I
use Naoe within the name.")
Cafe Prima Pasta (414 71st St., Miami
Beach, 305-867-0106), an institution since
1993, now has a new chef, Carlos Belon, and
new dishes, including more seafood entrIes
and an Italian/Japanese fusion tuna carpaccio
starter that sounds like it couldn't possibly
work (soy sauce and parmesan cheese?) but

: Creative kitchen in a resort setting.

thanks to subtle preparation surpasses the
cafe's famed traditional beef carpaccio.
Red Light (7700 Biscayne Blvd.) has a
new phone number: 305-757-7116. Yeah, it
does sound nuts for a nationally acclaimed
restaurant to change its principal way for
diners to make reservations. But chef/
owner Kris Wessel had good reason: "I
switched from a phone company charging
me almost $600 a month for my business
lines, but refused to port the number" to
his new, more reasonably priced company.
At Urban Oasis Project's Upper East-
side Farmers Market, newly relocated to
Legion Park (Biscayne Boulevard at 66th
St.) every Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00
p.m., here's what to expect in April, the
month Miami's farm markets traditionally
shut down. "Greens of all sorts will still be
going strong," says manager Art Friedrich.
"We'll have bananas, papayas, eggplant, hot
peppers, herbs." It's a myth that produce
stops when hot season starts.
Please consult this month's "BizBuzz"
column (page 28) for news and deals from
BT restaurant advertisers Anise Taverna,
Bagels & Company, and Laurenzo's.

Feedback: letters@ibbiscaynetimes.com

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April 2012

Restaurant Listings"

The Biscayne Corridor's most comprehensive restaurant guide. Total this month: 309.

Restaurant listings for the BT Dining Guide are written by are
written by Pamela Robin Brandt (restaurantsfbiscaynetimes.
com). 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
($$$) represent estimates for a typical meal without wine, tax,
ortip. Hyphenated icons ($-$$$) 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

Brickell / Downtown

Area 31
270 Biscayne Boulevard Way, 305-424-5234
Not that the sleek interior of this seafood restau-
rant (named for fishing area 31, stretching from the
Carolinas to South America) isn't a glamorous dining
setting But we'd eat outside From the expansive ter-
race 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 It's 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 cocktails are genuinely creative
Luckily you don't have to choose one or the other

500 Brickell Key Dr., 305-913-8254
Floor-to-ceiling windows showcase Biscayne Bay But
diners prefer ogling the raw-bar-fronted open kitchen,
where globetrotting chef Joel Huff crafts imaginative,
often multi-part dishes some Asian-inspired (like oys-
ters with fresh wasab., hibiscus granite, and Asian pear),
as one would expect from the Mandarin Oriental's top
eatery But most of Huffs dishes are strongly European-
influenced, primarily by New Spanish cuisine Elegant,
playfully molecular gastronomy-accented almond gaz-
pacho with foie gras snow," or eggs, bacon & toast"
(suckling pig, tempura duck egg, truffled potato, and
speck "air") tell the story $$$$$

901S. Miami Ave., (Mary Brickell Village),
Open until 4 00 a m on weekends, this London import
(Miami's second Balans) offers a sleeker setting than
its perennially popular Lincoln Road progenitor, but the
same simple yet sophisticated global menu The indoor
space can get mighty loud, but lounging on the dog-
friendly outdoor terrace, over a rich croque monsieur
(which comes with an alluringly sweet/sour citrus-
dressed side salad), a lobster club on onion toast, some
surprisingly solid Asian fusion items, and a cocktail is
one of Miami's more relaxing experiences $$-$$$

Bali Caf6
109 NE 2nd Ave., 305-358-5751
While Indonesian food isn't easy to find in Miami,
downtown has secret stashes small joints catering to
cruise-ship and construction workers This cute, exoti-
cally 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 $-$$

Banana & Leaf
234 NE 3rd St., 786431-5548
Ever get tempted by the convenience of supermarket
sushi boxes, but feel uneasy about freshness and
disgruntled about sparseness of fillings? In the grab-
and-go containers here, raw fish glistens and makis like
a plump snow crab roll have a satisfying seafood-to-
rice ratio If you'd rather, dishes on the larger custom
menu arrive almost as fast There is also limited, tasty
Southeast Asian fare Most unbelievable Prices beat
supermarketsushi by far $

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

Bento Sushi & Chinese
801 Brickell Bay Dr., 305-603-8904
Hidden in the Four Ambassadors Towers, this tiny spot
(which specializes in sushi plus Japanese small plates,
but also serves limited Chinese and Thai-inspired dishes
of the mix-and-match, pick-your-protein-then-preparation
sort) has been mostly an insider's secret delivery joint
for Brickell residents But its actually a pleasant place
to relax outside, enjoying a bay view and budget bento
box specials that include miso soup, ginger-dressed
salad, California roll, and fresh orange sections, plus
two mini-entrees (the nigirl assortment sushi and lacy-
battered tempura especially recommended) Bubble tea,
tool $$-$$$

Bon Fromage
500 Brickell Ave. #106, 786-329-5632
Though independently owned instead of a chain cog, this
cheese and wine cafe/shop is like a pint-size version of
Midtown Miami's Cheese Course, right down to being
officially self-service But it is staffed by accommodating
employees who, unofficially, do their best to double as
servers for eat-in diners The cheese (plus charcuterie)
menu of garnished platters, salads, and crusty baguette
sandwiches features numerous high-quality, imported
favorites, but don't miss more unusual domestic trea-
sures like Wisconsin bread, a cooked cheese that, like
hallouml, doesn't melt but tantalizingly softens when
heated $$

Bryan in the Kitchen
104 NE 2nd Ave.
This quirky cafe-markets chef/owner is a former
smoothle-swilling model who is now into fresh whole
foods, and though his eclectic green gourmet" menu
does uniformly reflect his dedication to ecological
consciousness, it otherwise could only be described as
intensely personal Offerings are an odd but appeal-
ng saint/sinner mix, ranging from healthy pasta/grain
salads and homemade-from-scratch snacks (beef jerky,
granola) to unique cupcakes featuring not-too-sweet
adult flavors and irresistible sticky buns If we had to
choosejust one category, we'd sin But luckily, you can
have itall $-$$

Caf6 Bastille
248 SE 1st St., 786-4253575
Breakfasting on a ham-egg-cheese crepe at this very
French-feeling- and tasting- cafe is a most civilized
way to start the day Formerly breakfast and lunch only,
the cafe is now open for dinner, too And while the



Edge, Steak & Bar
1435 Brickell Ave., 305-358-3535
Replacing the Four Seasons' formal fine dining spot
Acqua, Edge offers a more kick-back casual welcom-
ing vibe And in its fare there's a particularly warm
welcome for non-carnivores Chef-driven seafood items
(several inventive and unusually subtle ceviches and
tartares, a layered construction of corvina encrusted
in a jewel-bright green pesto crust, atop red plquillo
sauce stripes and salad, lobster corn soup packed with
sweet lobster meat, more) and a farm-to-table produce
emphasis make this one steakhouse where those who
don't eat beef have no beef $$$$-$$$$$

Mare Nostrum
1111 SW 1st Ave., 786-691-2770
While Mare Nostrum's own blurbs describe it as a
Mediterranean restaurant, it would be more accu-
rate to precede that with notjust another" Both
the name ("our sea") and a raw bar packed with
pristine Spanish and local seafood make clear what
is the specialty of chef Pedro Gallardo, an Arzak/El
Bulli veteran And indeed, simply steamed or grilled
clgala (Mediterranean langoustines) are impeccable
But one could also be happy making a meal of sea-
free small plates like luscious deep-fried artichokes
with peppery, rich romesco sauce $$-$$$$$


La Latina
3509 NE 2nd Ave., 305-571-9655
At last, an authentic Venezuelan arepera (purveyor
of homemade arepas, with a variety of meat, cheese,
and veggie fillings) that isn't out in the boonies
-and decidedly isn't a dive With colorful decor
concocted from recycled objects, this space, though
small, has truly eclectic, Midtown style The signa-
ture corn cakes, crisped outside and fluffy inside,
put sodden supermarket specimens to shame And
cachapas (softer, sweeter corn pancakes folded
around mozzarella-like fresh cheese) or bollarepitas

crepes (both savory and sweet) are tempting and varied
enough to eat all day, dinner choices like homemade
foie gras (with onion jam and Guerande salt), salmon
with lentils and fennel salsa, or a very affordable skirt
steak au polvre make it possible to resist $-$$$

Caf6 Sambal
500 Brickell Key Dr., 305913-8358
Though the Mandarin Oriental Hotel describes this
space as its casual hotel restaurant, many consider
it a more spectacular dining setting than the upscale
Azul, upstairs, owing to the option of dining outdoors on
a covered terrace directly on the waterfront The food
is Asian-inspired, with a few Latin and Mediterranean
accents For the health-conscious, the menu includes
low-cal choices For hedonists there's a big selection of
artisan sakes $$$-$$$$$

Cavas Wine Tasting Room
900 S. Miami Ave. #180, 305-372-8027
Like South Miami's predecessor (now closed), this
Cavas is mainly an upscale, high-tech tasting lounge for
the wine-curious Patrons buy prepaid cards to sample

(cheese-stuffed deep-fried corn cakes, with tangy
nata dip) may be even tastier $-$$

Salumeria 104
3451 NE 1st Ave. #104, 305-424-9588
In Italy, salumerlas started, like American delicates-
sens, as shops selling saluml (cured meats), but
evolved into the equivalent of eat-in deli/restaurants
that also serve cold and hot prepared foods At this
modern Midtown salumeria, the soups-to-salads-
to-sweets range of fare is the same Custom-sliced
imported cold cuts are a main focus, especially for
those who enjoy taste-testing a plate pairing Italy's two
most famous prosciuttos Parma and San Daniele But
homemade pastas are also impressive, as are hard-to-
find regional entrees like fegato alla Venezlana, which
will turn liver-haters into lovers $$-$$$

9540 NE 2nd Ave., 305-754-1924
Owned by Arcoub Abderrahim, who opened South
Beach's original PizzaFiore way back in 1996, this
cafe serves the kind of nostalgic, medium-thin crust-
ed, oozing-with-gooey-cheese pizzas reminiscent of
our childhood pies in northern NJ Sopranos' territory,
except now there are options for today's toppings
--sundried tomatoes, buffalo mozzarella, etc But
there's also a full menu of Italian-American classics,
including antipasto salads, subs, and particularly
popular, pastas Garlic rolls are a must, but we didn't
have to tell you that $-$$

14730 Biscayne Blvd., 786-406-6614
Two things distinguish the griddled patties of this
Denver-based chain, touted as the nation's fastest-
growing better burger restaurant," from other better
burgers a nod to local tastes (like toppings of fried
chorizo and potato frltas), and the smashing tech-
nique, producing an appealing thickly crusted exterior
Got burger overkill? Substitute chicken, or have a
salad An added draw unusual veggie sides, which go
beyond regular and sweet potato fries to crisp onion
strings, veggie frites" (carrots, string beans), and an
Old South fish-camp classic fried pickles $-$$

ounce, half-glass, or full-glass portions from more than
50 self-service dispensing machines But there's an
extensive selection of tapas/pintxos small plates, flat-
bread pizzas," sandwiches, plus fully garnished char-
cuterle and cheese platters specially selected to pair
well with vino Additionally, more substantial dishes have
been added, including a daily three-course lunch special
and some tasty, bargain-priced soups (carrot cream with
Gouda particularly recommended) $$-$$$

Chophouse Miami
300 S. Biscayne Blvd., 305-938-9000
Formerly Manny's Steakhouse, Miami's Chophouse
retains basically everything but the famed name (from
the original Manny's in Minneapolis), and remains
Miami's most intentionally masculine steakhouse
Here, ensconced in your black leather booth, everything
is humongous dry-aged choice-grade steaks like the
Bludgeon of Beef (a boldly flavorful 40-ounce bone-in
ribeye, 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 cock-
tails that would fell a T-Rex Not for the frail $$$$$

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April 2012


South Beach's most stunning beachfront playground is home to
the exclusive VESPER AMERICAN BRASSERIE, the acclaimed

AT 305 3411500

south beach

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rC, ~- '"'

April 2012

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Crazy About You
1155 Brickell Bay Dr. #101, 305-377-4442
The owners, and budget-friendly formula, are the same
here as at older Dolores, But You Can Call Me Lolita
Buy an entree (all under $20) from a sizable list of
Mediterranean, Latin, American, or Asian-influenced
choices (like Thai-marinated churrasco with crispy
shoestring fries) and get an appetizer for free, including
substantial stuff like a Chihuahua cheese casserole with
chorizo and pesto The difference This place, housed
in the former location of short-lived La Broche, has an
even more upscale ambiance than Dolores including a
million-dollar water view $$$
Cvi.che 105
105 NE 3rd Ave., 305-577-3454
Fusion food -a modern invention? Not in Peru, where
native and Euro-Asian influences have mixed for more
than a century But chef Juan Chipoco gives the ceviches
and tiraditos served at this hot spot his own unique spin
Specialties include flash-marinated raw seafood cre-
ations, such as tiradito a la crema de rocoto (sliced fish
in citrus-spiked chill/cream sauce) But traditional fusion
dishes like Chinese-Peruvian Chaufa fried rice (packed
with jumbo shrimp, mussels, and calamari) are also fun,
as well as surprisingly affordable $$
Damn Good Burger
20 Biscayne Blvd., 305-718-6565
At restolounge MIA, the hip, high-tech nightclub compo-
nent remains the same, as does much of the restaurant
space's mod decor The liquid nitrogen tanks are gone
from the kitchen, however, and the atmosphere aims for
a retro all-American feel to match the fare burgers (from
a hormone/antibiotic-free ground Angus chuck/brisket/
short rib blend), with choice of housemade sauce plus
customizable toppings ranging from pickles to pork belly
Also available veggie burgers, dogs, salads, Buffalo
chicken sandwiches, and standard sides Rich malts and
shakes come regular or adult (spiked) $$
db Bistro Moderne
345 Avenue of the Americas, 305-421-8800
Just two words Daniel Boulud" -should be enough for
foodies craving creative French/American comfort cui-
sine to run, not walk, to this restaurant If they can find it
(Hint The mysterious Avenue of the Americas" is really
Biscayne Boulevard Way Don't ask) Downtown's db
is an absentee celeb chef outpost, but on-site kitchen

wizard Jarrod Verblak flawlessly executes dishes ranging
from the original NYC db Bistro's signature foie gras/
short rib/black truffle-stuffed burger to local market-
driven dishes like crusted pompano with garlic/parsley
veloute $$$-$$$$
The Democratic Republic of Beer
255 NE 14th St., 305-372-4161
The food here? Beer is food The DRB serves 400 beers
from 55 countries, ranging from $2 Pabst Blue Ribbon
to $40 DeuS (an 115% alcohol Belgian method
Champenoise brew) But for those favoring solid snacks,
tasty global smallish plates include fried fresh zucchini
with dip (cheese recommended), chorizo with home-
made cilantro Mayo, or steak tacos, served Mexican-
style with onions, cilantro, and spicy salsa Sadly for
breakfast-brew enthusiasts, the DRB isn't open that
early But it is open late till 5 00 a m $$
Dolores, But You Can Call Me Lolita
1000 S. Miami Ave., 305-403-3103
From the stylish setting in Miami's historic Firehouse No
4, one would expect a mighty pricy meal But entrees,
which range from Nuevo Latino-style ginger/orange-glazed
pork tenderloin to a platter of Kobe mini-burgers, all cost
either $18 or $23 And the price includes an appetizer
- no low-rent crapola, either, but treats like Serrano ham
croquetas, a spinach/leek tart with Portobello mushroom
sauce, or shrimp-topped eggplant timbales The best
seats are on the glam rooftop patio $$$
Elwoods Gastro Pub
188 NE 3rd Ave., 305-358-5222
Cordial English owners, classic rock music (sometimes
live), and updated classic pub fare make this hangout a
home Made from scratch with artisan ingredients, tradi-
tional Brit bites like fish and chips can't be beat- thick
pieces of crisply beer-battered moist cod, served with
hand-cut fries and mushy [mashed] peas," plus house-
made tartar sauce and ketchup All desserts are also
made in-house, including a deliriously rich (but worth
it) sticky date pudding with toffee sauce Tie down your
dental implants They're in for a wild ride $$
Eternity Coffee Roasters
117 SE 2nd Ave., 305-609-4981
Normally we list only full restaurants, but even a (not
so) simple cuppa joe from Chris Johnson and Cristina
Garces's sleek micro-roastery will convince anyone

possessing taste buds that fine coffee can be as
complex as fine wine, and as satisfying as solid food
A changing selection of superior single-origin beans
(many varieties from the Garces family's Colombian
farm, most others from Ethiopia and Kenya), roasted in-
house, produces slow-pour" regular brews with amazing
nuances of fruits, chocolate, and more The espresso
is so smooth sugar isn't necessary Other treats flaky
chocolate-stuffed cigars" and other locally baked pas-
tries Free parking $
485 Brickell Ave. (Viceroy Hotel), 305-503-0373
Originally opened by Michelin-starred New Aegean" chef
Michael Psilakis, Eos changed upon the chefs departure
into a more familiar Mediterranean resort eatery, minus
Greek-inspired innovations Now inspiration comes main-
ly from Spain and Italy, with nods to Morocco and Latin
America Best bets include a tasting platter of Spanish
cheeses and cured meats, a pistachio-garnished salad
featuring Serrano ham, figs, and arugula, crispy parme-
san risotto balls with prosciutto and smoked tomato
dip, and olive/smoked paprika-rubbed roast chicken
At lunch burgers and upscale sandwiches are added
Fado Irish Pub
900 S. Miami Ave. #200
Unlike most Miami Irish" pubs, which serve mostly
American bar food, rarely foraying past fish and chips or
shepherd's pie, Fado (pronounced fdoe") has a menu
reflecting the pub grub found today in Ireland, including
solid standards But most intriguing are dishes mixing
classic and contemporary influences, particularly those
featuring boxty, a grated/mashed potato pancake Try
corned beef rolls (boxty wraps, with creamy mustard
sauce and cabbage slaw), or smoked salmon on mini-
boxty blini," with capers and horseradish sauce There's
a seasonal menu, too $$
Finnegan's River
401 SW 3rd Ave., 305-285-3030
Pool tables are expected in a sports bar and grill But an
actual pool? And a Jacuzzl? This Miami River hideaway
has other surprises, too, on its extensive outdoor deck,
including a boat dock and a large array of umbrella tables
and lounge chairs where its easy to while away many
happy hours The menu is the same array of bar bites

served by South Beach's older Finnegan's, but angus
burgers are big and tasty, and zingyjalapeno-studded
smoked-fish dip is a satisfyingtable-snack choice $$
First Hong Kong Caf6
117 SE 2nd St., 305-808-6665
Old Hong Kong saying If it walks, swims, crawls, or flies,
its edible And nowhere is this truer than in this histori-
cally international trade port's cafes" meaning fast-food
restaurants Typical menus present hundreds of items
that are local interpretations of dishes from all China, and
most other nations So believe us At this cafe, whose
head chef is from HK, the Indian-style curries, sambal-
spiked Indonesian chow fun, even the borscht (a tomato/
beef, not beet-based version of the Russian soup) are as
authentic as the kung pao whatever, and as tasty $$
Fratelli Milano
213 SE 1st St., 305-373-2300
Downtown isn'tyet a 24/7 urban center, but its expe-
riencing a mini explosion of eateries open at night That
includes this family-owned rlstorante, where even new-
comers feel at home At lunch it's almost impossible to
resist paninl, served on foccacla or crunchy clabatta, even
the vegetarian version bursts with complex and comple-
mentary flavors Duringweekday dinners, try generous
plates of risotto with shrimp and grilled asparagus, home-
made pastas like seafood-packed fettuccine al scoglio, or
delicate Vitello alla Milanese on arugula $$-$$$
Fresco California Bistro
1744 SW 3rd Ave., 305-858-0608
This festively decorated indoor/outdoor bistro packs
a lot of party spirit into a small space, a large variety
of food onto its menu To the familiar Latin American/
Italian 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 tama-
les, 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
venerable 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




-- L


Biscayne Times



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'' j*iiiiii ~;~~

April 2012

Specializing in regional Japanese Cuisine, focusing on small
tapas-like plates you will not find on menus anywhere else.
Live DJ @ Yakko Lounge
Fourth Thursday of the month
All Martini & Sakatini $5, Sake shot $2
Join us at Yakko Lounge 9pm-2am
Business Hours: 12pm ~ 3am Every Day
After Hours Dining
25years in business in North Miami Beach

3881 NE 163rd Street
North Miami Beach, Intracoastal Mall
Visit us online at
Not affiliated with Hiro's Restaurant on 163rd street

..... "^ El R ie Highway
PH: 30 76 or 305.949.4
FAX: 305-949-4727
Click your online order and get delivery right to your door www. pre
Mon -Fri 11 am. ti' 12jal ..l- Mh un 1p m -12a m
I :, ,:,:, r,= .I ,, ,: ,., l, I- .. , ,: I , ,, .. ..,: - '" ,--5

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April 2012

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"'" ~~~~ ~~~~~...... .:'....,,:t.......... .." ".i" "i


retail fish market Best preparations are the simplest
When stone crabs are in season, Garcla's claws are as
good as Joe's but considerably cheaper The local fish
sandwich is most popular grouper, yellowtail snapper,
or mahl mahl $-$$
Giovana Caffe
154 SE 1st Ave.305-374-1024
If the menu at this charming downtown hideaway
contained only one item pear and gorgonzola ravioli
dressed, not drowned, in sage-spiced cream sauce
-we'd be happy But the cafe, formerly lunch-only but
now serving weekday dinners, is also justly famed for
meal-size salads like grilled skirt steak atop sweetly
balsamic-dressed spinach (with spinach, tomatoes,
bacon, hard-boiled eggs, blue cheese, and almonds), or
an especially lavish chicken salad with pine nuts, golden
raisins, apples, and basil, an Italian twist $$
Grimpa Steakhouse
901 Brickell Plaza, 305-455-4757
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 traditional 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 $$$$-$$$$$
Half Moon Empanadas
192 SE 1st Ave., 305-379-2525
As with South Beach's original Half Moon, you can get
wraps or salads But it's this snackery's unique take
on Argentine-style empanadas that makes it seem a
natural for national franchising The soft-crusted, doughy
crescents baked, not fried, so relatively guilt-free are
amply stuffed with fillings both classic (beef and chicken,
either mild or spicy) and creative the bacon cheese-
burger, the pancetta/mozzarella/plum-filled Americana,
and several vegetarian options Atjust over two bucks
apiece, they're a money-saving moveable feast $
Hawa Jade
1331 Brickell Bay Dr., 305-905-5523
When thinking fusion" cuisines, Japanese and
Lebanese don't instantly spring to mind Buttakingthe
medieval Spice Route connection as inspiration, the
Hawa family makes the mix work at both its original
Coral Gables Hawa and this new location in the Jade
Residences Golden Pockets (tofu crepes encasing
macadamias, avocado, and tuna, crab, shrimp, or Kobe-
style beef) are musts Plus there are unique combos
containing makis plus substantial salads, like crunchy
tuna enoki rolls with falafel salad not the usual green
garnish Housemade desserts with a French twist are
also a pleasant surprise $$
II Gabbiano
335 S. Biscayne Blvd., 305-373-0063
Its location at the 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 market, thanks in part to the
flood of freebies that's a trademark of Manhattan's II
Mulino, originally run by II Gabblano's owners The rest
of the food? Pricy, but portions are mammoth And the
champagne-cream-sauced housemade ravioli with black
truffles? Worth every penny $$$$$
Hibachi Grill
45 NE 3rd Ave., 305-374-2223
Imagaine a mini-express Benlhana This place special-
izes in teppanyaki cuisine minus the thrilling (or ter-
rifying) tableside knife theatrics, true, but the one-plate
meals of seasoned steak slices, chicken, shrimp, or
salmon plus dipping sauces, fried rice, and an onion/
zucchini mix come at bargain prices There are also hefty
soups or Japanese, Thai, and Singapore-style noodle
and rice bowls loaded with veggies and choice of protein
(including tofu) The limited sides are Japanese (shumal,
plump chicken gyoza) and Chinese (various egg rolls)
Fancy? No, but satisfying $-$$
Indigo / Table 40
100 Chopin Plaza, 305-577-1000
Long known for its power-lunch buffet- including
hot entrees, carving station, custom pastas, packed-
to-the-gills salad, sushi, and dessert stations the
InterContinental Hotel's Indigo restaurant now has a
hip offspring intended for private dining Table 40 The
charming, glassed-in wine cellar" (actually in the kitch-
en) enables 12-14 diners to watch the action in heat-
shielded, soundproofed comfort while eating creations
by veteran chef Alexander Feher, combining Continental
technique with local seasonal ingredients Highlights
tender house-smoked, stout-braised short ribs, lavish
lobster salad with grilled mango, and a seductive fresh
corn gazpacho $$$-$$$$$

Iron Sushi
120 SE 3rd Ave., 305-373-2000
(See Miami Shores listing)
Jackson Soul Food
950 NW 3rd Ave., 305-377-6710]
With a recently refurbished exterior to match its classy/
comfy retro interior, this 65-year-old Overtown soul food
breakfast institution now has only one drawback It
closes at 100 p m Never mind, night owls If you're a
first-timer here, order the astonishingly fluffy pancakes
with juicy beef sausage, and you'll set multiple alarm
clocks to return Classic drop biscuits (preferably with
gravy) are also must-haves And hearty Southern break-
fast staples like smothered chicken wings or fried fish
do make breakfast seem like lunch, too $
Jam6n, Jam6n, Jam6n,
10 SW South River Dr., 305-324-1111
From the outside, you know you're walking into the ground
floor of a new condo building But once inside the charm-
ingly rustic room, you'd swear you're in Spain Obviously
Spain's famous cured hams are a specialty, as are other
pork products on the weekly changing menu, from a roast
suckling pig entree to a fried chorizo and chickpea tapa
But seafood is also terrific Don't miss bacalao-filled plquillo
peppers, or two of Miami's best rice dishes seafood paella
and arroz negro (with squid and its ink) $$-$$$
Kork Wine & Cheese Bar
2 S. Miami Ave., 305-377-8899
From the owner of Transit Lounge, a hip hangout long
before the downtown/Brickell revival, this more upscale-
cool venue is worth checking out for its almost medieval
dimly lit decor alone, including a subterranean wine
cellar/party room, formerly a WW II-era bomb shelter
Comestibles are limited to wine and cheese plus accom-
paniments Both are available to go Kork is as much
market as lounge But with a stock of roughly 5000
bottles, and a selection of roughly two dozen perfectly
ripe artisanal cheeses curated by a cheese sommelier
who'll create perfect pairings who needs more? $$
Largo Bar & Grill
401 Biscayne Blvd., 305-374-9706
Sure, Bayside Marketplace is touristy But it can be fun
to spend a day playing visitor in your own city If you do,
this waterfront place overlooking Mlamarina is a supe-
rior food choice Expect nothing cutting edge, just tasty,
familiar favorites solidly prepared You won't go wrong
with stone crab claws and Cajun mustard dip, inauthen-
tic but delicious fish tacos in hard blue corn tortillas with
two sauces (cilantro and chipotle), generously portioned
fish sandwiches (grouper, mahl, snapper, or daily catch).
and festive cocktails $$-$$$
La Loggia Ristorante and Lounge
68 W. Flagler St., 305-373-4800
This luxuriantly neo-classical yet warm Italian restaurant
was unquestionably a pioneer in revitalizingdowntown
With alternatives like amaretto-tinged pumpkin agnollotl
in sage butter sauce and cllantro-spiced white bean/
vegetable salad dressed with truffle oil, proprietors Jennifer
Porclello and Horatio Olivelra continue to draw a lunch
crowd that returns for dinner, or perhaps just stays on
through the afternoon, fueled by the Lawyers Liquid Lunch.
a vodka martini spiked with sweetened espresso $$$
La Moon
144 SW 8th St., 305-860-6209
At four in the morning, nothing quells the munchies like
a Crazy Burger, a Colombian take on a truckers 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 Nicolse
with grilled fresh tuna, seared salmon with mango salsa,
and other yuppie favorites $-$$
La Provence
1064 Brickell Ave. 786-425-9003
Great baguettes in the bread basket, many believe, indi-
cate a great meal to come But when Mlamlans encoun-
ter such bread crackling crust outside, moist, aromatic,
aerated interior- t's likely not from a restaurant's own
kitchen, but from La Provence Buttery croissants and
party-perfect pastries are legend too Not so familiar is
the bakery's cafe component, whose sandwich/salad
menu reflects local eclectic tastes But French items
like pan bagnats (essentially salade Nicolse on artisan
bread) will truly transport diners to co-owner David
Thau's Provengal homeland $$
La Sandwicherie
34 SW 8th St.
This second location of the open-air diner that is
South Beach's favorite apres-club eatery (since 1988)
closes earlier (midnight Sunday-Thursday, 5 00 a m
Friday and Saturday), but the smoothies, salads,
and superb Parisian sandwiches are the same ultra-
crusty baguette stuffed with evocative charcuterie

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April 2012


and cheeses (saucisson sec, country pate, camem-
bert, etc) and choice of salad veggies plus salty/tart
cornichons and Sandwichere's incomparable Dijon
mustard vinaigrette Additionally the larger branch has
an interior, with a kitchen enabling hot foods (quiches
and croques), plus A/C $-$$

Le Boudoir Brickell
188 SE 12th Terr., 305-372-233
At this French bakery/cafe mornings start seriously,
with choices ranging from quality cheese, charcuterie/
pate, or smoked salmon platters to chic Continental
and complete American breakfasts At lunch, gener-
ously salad-garnished, open-faced tartines are irresist-
ible 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 addictive mini-macaroon
sandwich cookies with dally-changing fillings $-$$
Lime Fresh Mexican Grill
1 W Flagler St, Suite 7, 305-789-9929
(See Midtown / Wynwood / Design District listing)

Little Lotus
25 N. Miami Ave. #107, 305-533-2700
Secreted inside the International Jewelry Exchange,
this eatery (owned by stealth super-foodle Sari
Maharani -- paralegal by day, restaurateur by night)
is tough to find but seems destined to become
one of our town's toughest tables to book Two tal-
ented chefs, whose credits include Morimoto (NYC)
and hometown fave Yakko-san, create Japanese,
Indonesian, and fusion small plates that look remark-
ably artful and taste like they're about ready to take
on Iron Chef Morimoto himself Saucing, often with
multiple but balanced potions, is especially notewor-
thy The prices? Asteal $-$$
LouLou Le Petit Bistro
638 S. Miami Ave.
When Indochine's owner, Jacques Ardisson, closed his
Asian spot to open this charming French eatery in the
same space, it was a return to his roots He and his
daughter, for whom the place is named, come from
Nice You'll be transported, too, by dishes like lamb
shank with flageolets (known as the caviar of beans),
duck leg confit on a bed of mouthwatering green
lentils from Le Puy, a classic moules/frites, a shared
charcuterie platter with a bottle from the sawy wine
list, and, of course, salade nliolse $$-$$$

Martini 28
146 SE 1st Ave., 305-577-4414
This stylish little lunch-only spot, a labor of love from
a husband-wife chef team, serves what might well
be the most impressive meal deal in town From an
ambitious, daily-changing menu of fare that's geo-
graphically eclectic but prepared with solid classic
technique, diners get a choice of about ten entrees
(substantial stuff like steak au polvre with Madeira
cream sauce and roasted potatoes, or pignolia-crust-
ed salmon with Dijon mustard sauce, potatoes, and
veggies), plus soup or salad and housemade dessert
For just $9 99 Told ya $
Miami Art Caf6
364 SE 1st St., 305-374-5117
For businessfolk on the go, this breakfast/lunch-only
French cafe serves up evocative baguette sandwiches
(like camembert) loaded, if you like, with greens,
olives, and more For those with time to sit, we'd rec-
ommend the savory crepes, garnished with perfectly
dressed salad, or sweet crepe like the Bonne Maman
(whose sugar/salted butter stuffing brings Brittany
to downtown) And quiches are nicely custardy But
there are surprises here, too, includingjust a few full
entrees, with correctly made traditional sauces one
wouldn't expect at a luncheonette except, perhaps,
in Paris $-$$
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 ofjerk chicken with
festival (sweet-fried cornmeal bread patties), but even
vegetarians are well served with dishes like a tofu,
carrot, and chayote curry All entrees come with rice
and peas, fried plantains, and salad, so no one leaves
hungry $

Mint Leaf
1063 SE 1st Ave., 305-358-5050
Part of London's famous Woodlands Group, this styl-
ish spot, like its Coral Gables parent, serves the sort
of upscale Indian food rarely found outside Great
Britain or India More interestingly, the menu includes
not just the familiar northern Indian Mughlai" fare

served in most of America's Indian restaurants, but
refined versions of south India's scrum ptious street
food We've happily assembled whole meals of the
vegetarian chaat (snacks) alone And dosal (lacy rice/
lentil crepes rolled around fillings ranging from tradi-
tional onion/potato to lamb masala or spicy chicken)
are so addictive they oughta be illegal $$$-$$$$

Miss Yip Chinese Caf6
900 Biscayne Blvd., 305-358-0088
Fans of the South Beach original will find the decor
different Most notably, there's an outdoor lounge,
and more generally a nightclub atmosphere But the
menu of Hong Kong-style Chinese food, prepared
by imported Chinese cooks, is familiar Simple yet
sophisticated Cantonese seafood dishes rock (try
the lightly battered salt-and-pepper shrimp), as does
orange peel chicken, spicy/tangy rather than overly
sweet And a single two-course Peking duck (skin in
crepes, stir-fried meat and veggies with lettuce cups)
makes mouthwatering finger food, shared among
friends $-$$$

neMesis Urban Bistro
1035 N. Miami Ave., 305-415-9911
Truly original restaurants are hard to find here, and
harder to describe in standard sound bites But they
often are the attention-grabbing people-magnets
that spark revivals of iffy neighborhoods That's our
prediction for this quirkily decorated bistro, where
the kitchen is helmed by Top Chef contestant Micah
Edelstein The intensely personal menu of creative
dishes inspired by her global travels (plus her fascina-
tion with unfamiliar ingredients) changes constantly,
but scrumptious signatures include South African
smoked veal bobotle, and Peruvian plnoll pancakes
with housemade chicken/apple sausage, hibiscus
syrup, and maple granules $$$-$$$$
1414 Brickell Ave., 305-403-0900
For those who think Argentine cuisine" is a synonym
for beef and more beef," this popular eatery's wide
range of more cosmopolitan contemporary Argentine
fare will be a revelation Classic parrilla-grilled steaks
are here for traditionalists, but the menu is dominated
by creative Nuevo Latino items like a new-style cevl-
che de chernia (lightly lime-marinated grouper with
jalapenos, basil, and the refreshing sweet counter-
point of watermelon), or crab ravioli with creamy saf-
fron sauce Especially notable are the entree salads
Oceanaire Seafood Room
900 S. Miami Ave., 305-372-8862
With a dozen branches nationwide, Oceanaire May
seem more All-American seafood empire than Florida
fish shack, but menus vary significantly according to
regional tastes and fish Here in Miami, chef Sean
Bernal supplements signature starters like lump crab
cakes with his own lightly marinated, Peruvian-style
grouper ceviche The daily-changing, 15-20 specimen
seafood selection includes local fish seldom seen on
local menus pompano, parrot fish, amberjack But
even flown-in fish (and the raw bar's cold-water oys-
ters) are ultra-fresh $$$$
Ozzi Sushi
200 SE 1st St., 786-704-8003
Since its 1958 invention, conveyor-belt sushi has
been the most fun form of Japanese fast food, but
problematic Who knew how long plates had been
circulating on the sushi-go-round? Happily, this sushi-
boat spot avoids sanitation issues with clear plastic
covers, and as for freshness, low prices ensure a
steady stream of diners grabbing makis, nigirl, and
more as they float by Highlights include glistening
ikura (salmon roe) in a thin-sliced cucumber cup, a
sweet-sauced mango/guava/crab roll, and a festively
frosted strawberry Nutella dessert maki $-$$

Pega Grill
15 E. Flagler St., 305-808-6666
From Thanaslos Barlos, a Greek native who formerly
owned North Beach's Ariston, this small spot is more
casually contemporary and less ethnic-kitschy in
ambiance, but serves equally authentic, full-flavored
Greek food Mixed lamb/beef gyros (chicken is also
an option), topped with tangy yogurt sauce and
wrapped, with greens and tomatoes, in fat warm plta
bread, are specialties But even more irresistible is
the taramasalata (particularly velvety and light carp
roe dip), available alone or on an olive/pita-garnished
mixed meze platter $$

1414 Brickell Ave., 305-416-5116
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 suspect Pasha's was
a tax write-off rather than a Harvard Business School
project, which it was by founders Antonio Ellek and

Enjoy 12 all natural, self-serve flavors

of premium, melt-in-your-mouth

delicious frozen yogurt...with

50 tempting toppings to choose from.

Prepared fresh daily!

= |


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April 2012 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

'14-w -


Nicolas Cortes Dishes range from falafel and gyros to
more unusual items like muhammara (tangy walnut
spread) and silky labneh yogurt cheese Everything
from pltas to lemonade is made fresh, from scratch,
daily $-$$

Peoples Bar-B-Que
360 NW 8th St., 305-373-8080
Oak-smoked, falling-off-the-bone tender barbecued
ribs (enhanced with a secret sauce whose recipe goes
back 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 aficionados consider our town's tastiest
souse And it would be unthinkable to call it quits with-
out homemade sweet potato pie or banana pudding,
plus a bracing flop half iced tea, half lemonade $-$$

15 SE 10th St., 305374-9449
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 $$

1451 S. Miami Ave., 305-808-7888
If you can overlook a name as unenlightening as most
in-jokes (it evidently refers to a favorite character of
owner Claudio Nunes's kids we assume the Pokemon
Psyduck), you'll experience pretty perfect pizza Sadly,
not all brick ovens turn out perfectly char-blistered
crusts, crisp outside and airy/chewy inside, but that's
what you II consistently find here and a newer take-out/
delivery-only Midtown branch And unlike many artisan
pizzerias, Pleducks doesn't get cheesy with cheese
quantity (though we like that extra cheese is an option)
Elaborate salads complete the menu $$

Adrienne Arsht Center
1300 Biscayne Blvd., 305949-6722
Though the opening of Barton G s elegant performing

arts center eatery did feature a live giraffe, the food's
actually more grown-up than at his original SoBe spot
The concept is prx fixe Any three courses on the menu
(meaning three entrees if you want) for $39 Highlights
include silky, tarragon-inflected corn/bacon chowder,
beautifully plated beef carpaccio with horseradish/
mustard and shallot olive oil dipping sauces, and over-
the-top playhouse desserts, one with a luscious creme
fralche ice cream pop $$$$

Puntino Downtown
353 SE 2nd Ave., 305-371-9661
The first U S venture of a hotelier from Naples, this
stylish little place is open Monday through Saturday
for dinner as well as lunch Ambiance is fashionably
cool Milanese rather than effusively warm Neapolitan
The food too is mostly contemporary rather than tra-
ditional But in true Italian style, the best stuff stays
simple an antipasto platter of imported cold cuts with
crostini and housemade marinated veggies, crisp-
fried calamari and shrimp, airy gnocchi with sprightly
tomato sauce, pools of melted bufala mozzarella, and
fresh basil $$-$$$

Raja's Indian Cuisine
33 NE 2nd Ave., 305-539-9551
Despite its small size and decor best described as
"none," this place is an institution thanks to south Indian
specialties rarely found in Miami's basically north Indian
restaurants The steam-tabled curries are fine (and nice-
ly priced), but be sure to try the custom-made dosal (lacy
rice crepes with a variety of savory fillings) and uttapam,
thicker pancakes, layered with onions and chills, both
served with sambar and chutney $$

The River Oyster Bar
650 S. Miami Ave.,
This casually cool jewel is a full-service seafood spot,
as evidenced by tempting menu selections like soft-
shell crabs with grilled vegetables, corn relish, and

Rosa Mexicano
900 S. Miami Ave., 786-425-1001
This expansive indoor/outdoor space offers a din-
ing experience 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-habanero-pepper cream
sauce), or Rosa's signature guacamole en molcajete,
made tableside A few pomegranate margaritas
ensure no worries $$$

315 S. Biscayne Blvd., 305-789-9933
Comparisons between this new Tom Billante venture
and the other (slightly pricier) Italian eatery in the
same building are inevitable, especially considering
similarities like key personnel from NYC's II Mulino,
Mulino-style abundant free appetizers, and a power-
dining crowd But why focus on competitive nonsense
when you can relax on the river-view terrace enjoy-
ing chef Enrico Giraldo's specialties, including an
elaborate take on Venice's famed fegato (calf's liver
and onions), upscaled with Lucanica sausage and a
balsamic reduction Or maybe an even more evocative
Roman ice cream tartufo? Manglal $$$$

Soi Asian Bistro
134 NE 2nd Ave, 305-523-3643
From the owners of Calle Ocho's hip Mr Yum and 2B
Asian Bistro, Sol sports similar casual-chic ambiance
and eclectic Thai/Japanese cuisine Traditional Thai
curries and familiar sushi rolls are prepared with solid
skill and style But most intriguing are new inventions
adding Peruvian fusion flair to the Asian mix, such
as a spicy, tangy tangle of crisp-fried yellow noodles
with sauteed shrimp plus slivered peppers and onions
- mod mee krob, with jalea-like tart heat replacing the
cloying sweetness $$

remoulade There are even a few dishes to please
meat-and-potatoes diners, like short ribs with macaroni Soya & Pomodoro
and cheese But oyster fans will find it difficult to resist 120 NE 1st St., 305-381-9511
stuffing themselves silly on the unusually large selection, Life is complicated Food should be simple That's
especially since oysters are served both raw and cooked owner Armando Alfano's philosophy, which is stated
- fire-roasted with sofrito butter, chorizo, and manchego above the entry to his atmospheric downtown eatery
There's also a thoughtful wine list and numerous artisan And since it's also the formula for the truest tradition-
beers on tap $$$ al Italian food (Alfano hails from Pompeii), it's fitting

that the menu is dominated by authentically straight-
forward yet sophisticated 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 $-$$

Sparky's Roadside Restaurant & Bar
204 NE 1st St., 305-377-2877
This cowboy-cute eatery's chefs/owners (one CIA-
trained, both BBQ fanatics nicknamed Sparky)
eschew regional purism, instead utilizing a hickory/
apple-wood-stoked rotisserie smoker to turn out their
personalized style of slow-cooked, complexly dry-rub
fusion ribs, chopped pork, brisket, and chicken
Diners can customize their orders with mix-and-match
housemade sauces sweet/tangy tomato-based,
Carolinas-inspired vinegar/mustard, pan-Asian holsin
with lemongrass and ginger, tropical guava/habanero
Authenticity aside, the quality of the food is as good
as much higher-priced barbecue outfits $-$$

Sushi Maki
1000 S. Miami Ave., 305-415-9779
Fans of the popular parent Sushi Maki in the Gables
will find many familiar favorites on this Brickell
branch's menu But the must-haves are some inven-
tive new dishes introduced to honor the eatery's tenth
anniversary and Miami multiculturalism "sushi tacos"
(fried gyoza skins with fusion fillings like raw salmon,
miso, chill-garlic sauce, and sour cream), three tasty
flash-marinated Asian/Latin tiraditos, addictive rock
shrimp tempura with creamy/spicy dip Also irresistible
four festive new sake cocktails $$-$$$

49 SW 11th St., 305-960-7097
This small Japanese-Peruvian place serves food influ-
enced by each nation distinctly, plus intriguing fusion
items with added Caribbean touches Cooked entrees,
all Peruvian, include an elegant aji de gallina (walnut-
garnished chicken and potatoes in peppery cream
sauce) But the emphasis is on contemporary cevich-
es/tiraditos (those with velvety aji amarillo chill sauce
particularly), plus huge exotic sushi rolls, which get
pretty wild When was the last time you encountered
a tempura-battered tuna, avocado, and scallion maki
topped with Peru's traditional potato garnish, huancaina
cheese sauce? $$

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012


Thai Angel
152 SE 1st Ave., 305-371-9748
Inside a colorful courtyard that rather resembles
Munchkinland, this downtown insider's secret" serves
serious Thai food till 9 00 p m daily Tasty classics like
the four curries (red, green, panang, and massaman)
come custom-spiced mild to authentically brain-searing
- and are so affordable there's no guilt in splurging on
superb house specials like crisp-coated duck or fresh
snapper (whole or filleted) in tamarind sauce The young
chef has a heavenly hand at tofu, too, so vegetarians are
very well-served $$

Tobacco Road
626 S. Miami Ave., 305-374-1198
Prohibition-era speakeasy (reputedly a fave of Al
Capone), gay bar, strip club Previously all these, this grit-
ty spot has been best known since 1982 as a venue for
live music, primarily blues But it also offers food from
lunchtime to late night (on weekends till 4 00 a m ) The
kitchen is especially known for its chill, budget-priced
steaks, and burgers There's also surprisingly elegant
fare, though, like a Norwegian salmon club with lemon
aioli A meat-smoker in back turns out tasty ribs $$

Tre Italian Bistro
270 E. Flagler St., 305-373-3303
Bistro" actually sounds too Old World for this cool
hangout, from the owners of downtown old-timer La
Loggia, but restolounge" sounds too glitzy Think of it
as a neighborhood bistrolounge The food is mostly
modernized Italian, with Latin and Asian accents a
prosclutto-and-fig pizza with Brazilian catupiry cheese.
gnocchi served either as finger food (fried, with calama-
ta olive/truffle aioli), or plated with orange-ginger sauce
But there are tomato-sauced meatballs with ringawt for
Grandpa Vinnie, too $$-$$$

Miami restaurant rarities informed and gracious service

415 NE 2nd St., 305-237-3200
Atop the revolutionary Miami Culinary Institute. this
upscale eatery, unlike the cafe downstairs, isn't student-
run Rather its designed to showcase school ideals
- including sustainability as well as definitive Miami cui-
sine The changing menu, from a culinary Dream Team
headed by New World Cuisine" inventor/MCI instructor
Norman Van Aken (plus former proteges Jeffrey Brana
and Travis Starwalt), mixes citrus-inflected creamy conch
chowder and other pioneering signatures with new
inventions like mind-reelingly multidimensional oyster
pan stew, or tartare of tuna and burstingly ripe tomato
topped with a delicate sous vide egg $$$$$

Waxy O'Connor's
690 SW 1st Ct., 786-871-7660
While the menu of this casually craic (Gaelic for fun")
Irish pub will be familiar to fans of the South Beach
Waxy's, the location is far superior on the Miami River,
with waterfront deck And none of Miami's Irish eater-
ies offers as much authentic traditional fare Especially
evocative imported oak-smoked Irish salmon with
housemade brown bread, puff-pastry-wrapped Irish sau-
sage rolls, lunchtime's imported Irish bacon or banger
butty" sandwiches on crusty baguettes, served with
hand-cut fries, the latter particularly terrific dipped in
Waxy's curry sauce $$

Wok Town
119 SE 1st Ave., 305-371-9993
Judging from the takeout window, the minimalist
decor (with communal seating), and predominance of
American veggies on the menu, this Asian fast-food
eatery, owned by Shal Ben-Ami (a Miss Yip and Domo

San Pellegrinos list of the world's best restaurants, and
a similar menu of world-class, Izakaya-style smallish
plates (robata-grilled items, sushi, much more) meant
for sharing over drinks Suffice to say that it would take
maybe a dozen visits to work your way through the volu-
minous menu, which offers ample temptations for veg-
etarians as well as carnivores Our favorite is the melt-in-
your-mouth pork belly with yuzu/mustard miso dip, but
even the exquisitely-garnished tofu rocks $$$$

Midtown / Wynwood / Design District

3 Chefs Chinese Restaurant
1800 Biscayne Blvd. #105, 305-373-2688
Until this eatery opened in late 2010, the solid Chinese
restaurants in this neighborhood could be counted on
the fingers of no hands So it's not surprising that most
people concentrate on Chinese and Chinese/American
fare The real surprise is the remarkably tasty, budget-
priced. Vietnamese fare Try pho, 12 varieties of full-
flavored beef/rice noodle soup (including our favorite,
with well-done flank steak and flash-cooked eye round)
All can be customized with sprouts and fresh herbs Also
impressive Noodle combination plates with sauteed
meats, salad, and spring rolls $$

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

(Cordoba's Serrano ham/egg-enriched gazpacho) truly
take your taste buds on a trip to Andalucia On week-
ends, food is served till 4 00 a m $$$

3221 NE 2nd Ave., 786-925-0911
Despite this tiny place's modern decor, the family-run
ambiance and Italian-American comfort food evoke the
neighborhood red-sauce joints that were our favored
hangouts growing up in NJ's Sopranos territory And
low prices make it possible to hang out here frequently
Pizzas with hand-tossed crusts, not wood-oven but
resembling honest bread, for less than fast food pizzeria
prices? It's an offer you don't refuse Don't refuse garlic
rolls, either, or sinful zeppole (fried dough) for dessert
There's more complex fare, like chicken a la Francese,
too And they deliver $$

2010 Biscayne Blvd., 305-403-1976
At this Indian eatery the decor is cool and contem-
porary muted gray and earth-tone walls, tasteful
burgundy banquettes 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 presented 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 $$$

Best Friends
4770 Biscayne Blvd 786-439-39990n a restaurant-
starved stretch of Biscayne Boulevard, this spot serves
the same sort of simple but satisfying Italian fare (anti-
pastl, soups, salads, pizzas) as its older sibling, South
Miami's Blu Pizzeria, plus burgers The thin-crust, pliable
pizzas, though lacking burn blisters, are brick-oven

Truluck's Seafood, Steak, and Crabhouse Japones veteran) May initially seem akin to those air- cooked, as are blues," unusual calzones (like the blu
777 Brickell Ave., 305-579-0035 port Oriental steam tables Wrong Custom-cooked by Andalus oceano, fatly filled with mozzarella, prosciutto crudo,
Compared to other restaurants with such an upscale Chinese chefs, starters (like soy/garlic-coated edama- 35 NE 40th St., 305-400-4422 arugula, and fresh tomatoes) Hefty half-pound burgers
power-lunch/dinner setting, most prices are quite afford- me), salads, and have-it-your-way stir-fries, fried rice, or Early publicity pegging this place (in Pacific Time's for- come similarly stuffed rather than topped A sheltered
able here, especially if you stick to the Miami Spice- noodle bowls burst with bold, fresh flavor The proof a mer space) as a tapas bar seemed to set it up as direct patio and full bar make the place a pleasant neighbor-
priced date-dinner menu, or happy hour, when seafood startlingly savory miso beef salad, with sesame/ginger/ competition for nearby Sra Martinez Its actually quite hood lounge, too $$
items like crab-cake sliders" are half price Most scallion dressing Bubble tea, tool $$ different, with emphasis divided between small-plate
impressive, though, are seasonal stone crabs (from lounging and full fine-dining meals And regardless of Bin No. 18
Trulucks own fisheries, and way less expensive than Zuma size, dishes aren't contemporary riffs on tradition but 1800 Biscayne Blvd., 786-235-7575
Joe's) and other seafood that, during several visits, never 270 Biscayne Blvd. Way, 305-577-0277 authentic regional specialties Subtly nuttyjamon pata Atthis wine bar/cafe, the decor is a stylish mix of con-
tasted less than impeccably fresh, plus that greatest of This Miami River restolounge has a London parent on negra (the Rolls-Royce of cured hams) or salmorejo temporary (high loft ceilings) and Old World (tables made
m erk E . ..

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012


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, caramelized onions,
pine nuts, fresh figs, and prosciutto Free parking behind
the building $$

Blue Piano
4600 NE 2nd Ave., 305-576-7919
The address suggests a street-corner location, but this
casually cool wine bar/bistro is actually hidden midblock
It's well worth the hunt, thanks to the passionate, very
personally hands-on involvement of its four owners,
whose individual areas of expertise encompass food,
wine, and live entertainment, melding all seamlessly
The music is muted, encouraging conversation, wines
are largely small-production gems, sold at comparatively
low mark-ups And the small-plates menu features
delectably different dishes like the McLuwin', a meld of
savory Spanish sausage and chicharrones, topped with
a quail egg and chipotle cream -supremely satisfying

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, we'd be a helluva hip
food town Like true Parisian bistros, it's open continu-
ously, every day, with prices so low that you can drop
in anytime for authentic rlllettes (a rustic 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 $$

Buena Vista Deli
4590 NE 2nd Ave., 305-576-3945
At this casual cafe/bakery, co-owned by Buena Vista
Bistro's Claude Postel, the day starts in authentic French
fashion, with fresh breakfast breads, chocolate almond
croissants, and other delights At lunch cornichon-
garnished baguette sandwiches (containing housemade
pates, sinfully rich pork rillettes, superb salami, and
other charcuterie classics) are irresistible, and a buttery-
crusted, custardy quiche plus perfectly dressed salad
costs little more than a fast-food combo meal As for
Postel's homemade French sweets, if you grab the last
Paris-Brest, a praline butter-cream-filled puff pastry, we
may have to kill you $-$$

Caf6 46
190 NE 46th St., 305-400-8828
It doesn't look like South Beach's late lamented Joe
Allen The urban beach bar decor and bohemian vibe
actually are more reminiscent of this space's first res-
taurant, 190 But the menu is virtually identical no
surprise since co-owner/host Marlo Rubeo, plus most
kitchen staffers, are Joe Allen veterans Revisit faves
like matzo meal-crusted chicken, the famous burger,
still-unique dinner salads spotlighting uncommon ingre-
dients like smoked trout, and fun signature desserts like
Rice Krlspy treats $$$

297 NW 23rd St., 305-438-0792
This elegantly comfortable multi-room indoor/outdoor
venue is described as an art gallery/lounge," and some
do come just for cocktails like the hefty cafe con leche
martinis But don't overlook chef Gully Booth's 12-item
menu of very tasty tapas The signature item is a truly
jumbo-lump crab cake with no discernable binder At
one South Beach Wine & Food Festival, Martha Stewart
proclaimed it the best she'd ever had Our own prime
pick melt-in-your-mouth ginger sea bass anticuchos, so
buttery-rich we nearly passed out with pleasure $$

Catch Grill & Bar
1633 N. Bayshore Dr., 305-536-6414
A location within easy walking distance of the Arsht
Center for the Performing Arts, in the extensively reno-
vated Marriott Biscayne Bay, makes this casual-chic
eatery, whose specialty is local and sustainable seafood,
a great option for pre-show bites Then again, enjoying
lures like sweet-glazed crispy shrimp with friends on the
outdoor, bayfront terrace is entertainment enough It's
worth calling to ask if the daily catch is wreckfish, a sus-
tainable local that tastes like a cross between grouper
and sea bass Bonus With validation, valet parking is
free $$$-$$$$

Cerviceria 100 Montaditos
3252 NE 1st Ave. #104, 305-921-4373
Student budget prices, indeed Afirst-grader's allowance
would cover a meal at this first U S branch of a popular
Spanish chain The 100 mini sandwiches (on crusty,
olive oil-drizzled baguettes) vary from $1 to $2 50,
depending not on ingredient quality but complexity
A buck scores genuine Serrano ham, while top-ticket
fillings add imported Iberico cheese, pulled pork, and
tomato to the cured-ham slivers Other options revolve

around pates, smoked salmon, shrimp, and similar
elegant stuff There's cheap draft beer, too, plus non-
sandwich snacks $$

City Hall the Restaurant
2004 Biscayne Blvd., 305-764-3130
After 30+ years spent guiding other owners' restau-
rants to success, Miami Spice program creator Steve
Haas has opened his own expansive, two-floor place,
on a stretch of Biscayne Boulevard that's suddenly
looking fashionable The vibe is a mix of power-dining
destination and comfle neighborhood hangout, and
chef Tom Azar (ex-Emeril's) has designed a varied
menu to match Highlights an astonishingly thin/
crunchy-crusted pizza topped with duck confit, wild
mushrooms, port wine syrup, and subtly truffled becha-
mel, crispy calamari (rings and legs) with light, lemony
tomato emulsion, and tuna tartar that is refreshingly
free of sesame oil Big portions and a full bar to boot

The Cheese Course
3451 NE 1st Ave., 786-220-6681
Not so much a restaurant as an artisanal cheese shop
with complimentary prepared foods, this place's self-
service cafe component nevertheless became an instant
hit Impeccable ingredients and inspired combinations
make even the simplest salads and sandwiches unique
- like bacon and egg, elevated by hand-crafted cream
cheese, roasted red peppers, avocado, and chipotle
Mayo Cheese platters are exceptional, and customized
for flavor preference from mild to bold, and accompa-
nied by appropriate fruits, veggies, nuts, olives, prepared
spreads, and breads $$

Clive's Caf6
2818 N. Miami Ave., 305-5760277
Some still come for the inexpensive, hearty American
breakfasts and lunches that this homey hole-in-the-wall
has served for more than 30 years Since about 1990,
though, when owner Pearline Murray ("Ms Pearl" to
regulars) and cook Gloria Chin began emphasizing their
native Jamaican specialties, the intensely spiced grilled
jerk chicken has been the main item here Other favor-
ites savory rice and pigeon peas, eye-opening onion/
vinegar-flavored escovitch fish, sweet plantains, and cab-
bage that redefines the vegetable $

Crumb on Parchment
3930 NE 2nd Ave., 305-572-9444
Though located in a difficult spot (the Melin Building's
central atrium, invisible from the street), Michelle
Bernsteln's bakery/cafe packs 'em in, partly due to
Bernsteln's mom Martha, who makes irresistible old-
school cakes German chocolate with walnuts, lemon
curd with buttercream frosting, more Lunch fare
includes inspired sandwiches like seared rare tuna with
spicy Asian pickles and kimchi aloli And for morning
people, the savory chicken sausage, melted cheddar,
kale, and shallot sandwich on challah will convince you
that breakfast is the most important meal of the day

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 differentiates the place Signature sandwiches
are named after national and local newspapers, includ-
ing 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 ingre-
dients, garnishes, breads, and condiments for the cre-
atively minded $

Egg & Dart
4029 N. Miami Ave., 786-431-1022
While co-owners Costa Grillas (from Maria's, a Coral
Gables staple) and Niko Theodorou (whose family mem-
bers have several Greek islands restaurants) describe
their cuisine as rustic Greek," there is surprising sophis-
tication in some dishes an especially delicate tarama-
salata (cod roe dip), precisely crisp-fried smelts (like
a freshwater sardine), galactobourico, an often heavy
and cloyingly vanilla-saturated dessert, here custardy
and enlivened by orange flavor Extensive lists of mezze
(snacks) and creative cocktails make the expansive,
invitingly decorated space ideal for large gatherings of
friends who enjoy sharing $$$

Egyptian Pizza Kitchen
Shops at Midtown Miami
Buena Vista Avenue, 305-571-9050
Pizza, plta hey, they're both flatbreads So while many
pizzas do indeed, as this halal place's name suggests,
have initially weird-seeming Middle Eastern toppings,
it's really not surprising that the Giza (topped with mari-
nated lamb, feta, olives, peppers, and pungently spiced
cumin sauce) works at least as well as Italian classics
Additionally the menu includes interesting Middle
Eastern fare like foul, a hummus-like but lighter Egyptian
dish of favas, tahini, garlic, lemon juice, and olive oil A

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com April 2012

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

April 2012