Biscayne times

MISSING IMAGE

Material Information

Title:
Biscayne times
Physical Description:
Newspaper
Language:
English
Publisher:
Biscayne Media, LLC
Place of Publication:
Miami, Florida
Creation Date:
July 2013
Publication Date:
Copyright Date:
07-2013

Subjects

Genre:
newspaper   ( sobekcm )

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Florida
Holding Location:
University of Florida
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
System ID:
UF00099644:00088


This item is only available as the following downloads:


Full Text

PAGE 1

CALL 305-756-6200 FOR INFORMATION ABOUT THIS ADVERTISING SPACE February 2014 www.BiscayneTimes.com Volume 11 Issue 12

PAGE 3

*Prices valid Feb 5-15, 2014 rrfntb* fn rr*nt*

PAGE 4

rfntb rfntbtff r rffntb rfrn rfr rrfr rr rr n nt tbr nr rn fntb fb b b bnt b b b t t nt b b b bt b bt

PAGE 7

2060 N Bayshore Dr, Miami FL 33137 I 305.615.1376rfrrnnnnnnnnnnnntb nnnnnnnbnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnb TOMI ROSE rfrnftrf b THE rfnrntbn rfnfrnrfn nrtnrrn rrfrrr fnrtrnrt nrn frnrnrrrrtn nff rrrtf fnnnr nbf frt rr ffn tfnbf r ffrnr tfrr nn rntfrnn rt TOMI ROSE & OPULENCE INTL REALTY Double-Teaming Sports & Entertainment Real Estate

PAGE 8

COVER STORY 20 DawnTown: Amazing design COMMENTARY 10 Fe edback: Letters 14 Jack King: Random Ridiculousness OUR SPONSORS 16 BizBuzz: February 2014 COMMUNITY NEWS 40 Aventuras E-mail Policy 40 Palette Miami Festival: For Locals 41 To FDOT, Every Street Is a Highway NEIGHBORHOOD CORRESPONDENTS 48 Jen Karetnick: Slaughter on Tenth Avenue 50 Jay Beskin: For the Love of Sears 52 Ada m Schachner: Miamis Tipping Point 54 Mark Sell: 125th Street Draws Crowds 56 Ken Jett: Dare You to Get Involved ART & CULTURE 58 Anne Tschida on feisty Larry Poons 60 Melissa Wallens Galleries + Museums 62 Events Calendar: Soweto Singers POLICE REPORTS 64 Derek McCanns Biscayne Crime Beat PARK PATROL 66 Jim W. Harper: Wainwright Delight COLUMNISTS 68 All Things Animal: A Fond Farewell 70 Picture Story: Freedom Tower 71 Your Garden: Wild Cucumbers 72 Kids and the City: Scouts Honor 73 Going Green : Blessed Water 74 Vino: French Country Wines 75 Dish: Vegan Pizza, Batch Cocktails DINING GUIDE 76 Re staurant Listings: 292 Biscayne Corridor Restaurants RWBimini BOOK YOUR GETAWAY TODAY! WWW.RWBIMINI.COM FOR MORE INFO, CALL 1-888-930-8688.Ship registry Panama. Management reserves all rights. Promotion & prices subject to change or cancellation. Valid for new bookings only. Valid Friday to Sunday. Booking window now until 3/30/14. Travel window now until 3/30/14. Blackout dates apply. Does not include resort fee and 16% tax. Does not include port charges. Must be 18 years of age to gamble in international waters and in The Bahamas. Must have a valid government-issued photo ID and birth certicate or valid Passport. Gambling problem? Call 1-800-GAMBLER.Resorts World Bimini offers breathtaking water and marina views. Enjoy hours of nonstop gaming action at the brand-new, state-of-the-art casino featuring live-action table games such as Craps, Roulette, Blackjack, Baccarat, Slots and the ONLY Sports Books near Florida. Nestled along the white sand beaches and turquoise waters of the Bahamas, Resorts World Bimini boasts beautifully appointed accommodations, six vibrant restaurants and bars, 40% OFF ISLAND TRAVEL PACKAGES From $358pp2-Night Stay and Round-Trip Cruise Aboard Bimini SuperFastYOU BET... YOU CAN ESCAPE TO BIMINI, BAHAMAS JUST MINUTES FROM SOUTH FLORIDA! PUBLISHER & EDITOR r CONTRIBUTORS fntrnSenior Writer nrnr bArts Editor r tnrt t t rr r n nn rnrn BUSINESS MANAGER rrr rrrr ACCOUNT EXECUTIVES r r r rr ART DIRECTOR rn r ADVERTISING DESIGN rrr CIRCULATION rrr PRINTING rCONTENTSPO Box 370566, Miami, FL 33137 www.biscaynetimes.com rfnftbfrfft nbb F OR A DVERTISING INFORMATION CALL 305-756-6200 58 68 73Serving 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

PAGE 9

Miami HEAT Corporate Partnerrf ntbrfrfttt rrrr rrrrrrffrrrrfrr f r rr rffrffr rrr NOW OPEN IN WYNWOOD

PAGE 10

Two Blocks East, then Ten Blocks South, Then Five Blocks East Got That?Kudos yet again to Biscayne Times for Eric Bojnanskys wonderful cover story on naming Little Haiti (Names Matter, January 2014). Theres a taint of racism in some but not all of the comments by persons opposed to naming ers will honor it by naming it. would leave Little River mostly intact. Little Haiti would be sort of an L-shape, Avenue, where it would turn south down head east to NE 4th Court, which would go down to the southern boundary of NE stretch along NE 2nd Avenue from NE think it deserves. John Chellino MiamiUnlike the Lemon Trees, They Are Here to StayLong live Little Haiti! remain within the community because the majority of the people who live and conduct business in the area. My father owns a home in Little Haiti and has refused to sell to inves tors like many of his Haitian neighbors did because of the acceptance he feels in this community. My father has lived in several states, including New York and Connecticut, and also in Canada, but Miami sealed the deal for him. He purchased his home here because of the many Haitian people he met 30 years ago who have since then rede Little Haiti. Peter Ehrlich thinks he can drive us Haitians out by renaming the famous Little Haiti back to Lemon City? owning a couple of properties in Little Haiti as well, and we are planning to stay there, whether you like it or not. Little Haiti is here to stay. By the way, there are no more lemon trees in the area, but there are many Haitian people who are here to stay. Ruth Henry Little HaitiReally? Little Somalia?Erik Bojnansky wrote a very good arthat well-to-do exiles do not want to live in Little Haiti for the same reasons that non-Haitian business owners do not appreciate this moniker to a business area. Does anyone expect the free market to invest in a renamed neighborhood like Maybe if the locals would witness great efforts and success at establishing a functioning democracy and economy in Haiti by expatriates, then maybe the renaming idea would receive more love. circles, but appearance does matter, plus the saying whats in a name? This should not distract from pride of cultural heritage. Ulrich Michel Lemon CityWhat Little Haiti Really Needs: A Marketing PlanThanks once again to the BT and senior reporter Eric Bojnansky for a detailed story on Lemon City and the people and businesses who have occupied it. Great didnt know that Little Havana is just designation. One thing Bojnansky did not mention is that if you look at most maps, the name Little Haiti already appears. This started about a decade ago, when Miami created the Little Haiti NET missioner that it was a bad precedent to favor one group over an existing ethnicThere are many groups in Miami who have had an impact on our city, but how can we rename any area simply because one group has occupied its pages of history for a few decades? why not rename Coconut Grove the Gay Grove, as it was the social and business hub of the GLBT community in the Gays on the Beach; after all, it was a few Commentary: LETTERS Continued on page 12

PAGE 11

REAL ESTATE BROKER / CEO LIST WITH ME AND SELL IT FAST!305-895-JEFF(5333) BISCAYNE PARK TURNKEY 15' HIGH VAULTED CEILINGS A CLASSIC BROUGHT INTO THE 21 CENTURY ART DECO DREAM HOME6bdr 3 bth Large New Jacuzzi Deck, 3500 Sq Ft 2 Car Garage. Hi Tech Italian Miele/Bosch Stainless & Quartz Kitchen. Itailian Glass Tile Baths, Master has Body Sprays and Steam Room. Guest Wing/In-Laws Quaters $599K KEYSTONE POINT NON-WATERFRONT ON CORNER LOT4bdr/2ba, 1 car garage, new pool, eat-in kitchen with stainless steel appliances, family room with hi vaulted ceilings, marble master bath. Oversized 1/3 acre corner lot $549K SANS SOUCI ESTATES CONTEMPORARY 2014 NEW CONSTR. 75 ON WATER. ZERO EDGE POOL & SPA 6br/6.5ba pool 5563 sqft 2 car garage. Hi-tech gourmet kitchen. All white glass porcelain flooring & baths. 30 high ceilings. Home theatre/media rm. impact windows $2.2M DUPLEX GREAT INVESTMENT GREAT NEIGHBORHOOD! IN THE HEART OF BISCAYNE GARDENS SURROUNDED BY 3/4 ACRE SINGLE FAMILY RESIDENCES SELLING IN THE 3-500K RANGE.3bdr 2 bth on one side 2bdr 1 bth on other, all new appliances, new bathrooms, newer roof, reconditioned oak floors, central a/c over 2000 sq ft vacant ready to rent or move in. Great for owner/renter. Cash only $210K CONTEMPORARY 2014 NEW CONSTR. 75 ON THE WATER POOL & SPA6br/6ba waterfall pool & spa, 4513 sq ft 4 car garage. Hi-tech gourmet kitchen. All white glass porcelain flooring & baths. 30 high ceilings. Home theatre/media rm. impact windows $1.9M KEYSTONE POINT WATERFRONT DIRECT OCEAN ACCESS REMODELED 2014 !4 bdr 2 bth 2400SF completely remodeled brand new in 2014, 24 Marble Floors throughout. All Granite Eat-in Kitchen with Stainless Steel Appliances, State of the Art New Baths, 24 hr GaurdGated Community Only $825K DUPLEX INCOME PROPERTY SANS SOUCI ESTATES KEYSTONE POINT N MIAMI FL 100 OF DOCKAGE OVERSIZED LOT "SANS SOUCI ESTATES" 28 HIGH CEILINGS !!! 4 bdr/3.5 bth,pool 2.5 Car Gar,3890 Sq.Ft. Center Island Maple & Corian Kitchen, Close to The Bay 24 hr Guard Gated Community ONLY $1.29M SANS SOUCI ESTATES NON-WATER GUARDGATED COMMUNITY5bd/3ba dbl carport 3450sf. Beautiful open floorplan, center island kitchen with breakfast nook, huge great room with wetbar, exotic lush landscaped. 8 riverrock waterfall pool w/built-in jacuzzi. $649K

PAGE 12

gay entrepreneurs who opened gay bars and retail stores, leading that unprecedented revitalization. MiMo (Miami Modern) and all the neighborhoods known as the Upper East it has consisted of the largest concentration of GLBT individuals of any neighborhood in the entire county. My neighborhood of Belle Meade at one time consisted of about Even though the GLBT community can take credit for leading the revitalization of many Miami neighborhoods, house by house, building by building, we have not petitioned Miami leaders to name neigh borhoods after us because we are too busy improving neighborhoods and promoting our businesses in various media. Little Haiti. This situation calls for a marketing plan, Haitian business leaders continue collec tively improving and promoting their busi a great product or service and advertise in the proper media, locals and tourists will Steve Hagen Belle MeadeBeat Em at Their Own Game homeland would cling to a few familiar square miles that hold profound meaning for them here. This is no doubt the same feeling that makes Cubans, even those whove moved away, venerate whats left Land, but the place at least where they could believe in promises again. of Little Haiti will win their campaign the story said, that would be an unprecedented legal step. example? Hang the Welcome to Little Haiti signs from the windows if you must; organize groups to clean up what needs cleaning; and market Little Haiti. Offer tours. Build a Little Haiti website. Haitian landowners can beat the developers at their own game by partnering with investors/developers of their own area with Little Haiti, their task now is to make it a positive association. This NE 2nd Avenue Partnership should counsel business owners, and blanket NET and other redevelopment agencies with applications for funds; they should canvass wealthy Haitians and seek out investment partnerships (yes, people with loads of money!). These days, many investors look for double bottom line investments, those with positive social returns as well as economic returns. Reach out to those who can bring win-win solutions and get ahead of the development wave. Go forth and prosper! Louis Pine MiamiAt 35 Feet, Less Is MoreCongratulations to developer Avra Jain and architect Dean Lewis (The Boulevards Design Doctor, January 2014) on their many projects progressing on Biscayne Boulevard. Their success is foot height limit. That height limit is not only preserving the character and scale of the MiMo Historic District and protecting the residential areas behind it from highrenaissance by way of its companion TDR program (transfer of development possible without the TDRs. Ms. Jain and Mr. Lewiss numerous projects in the MiMo District are being Ms. Jain and her partners are the exact sort of historic preservation-minded developers the MiMo District and May they live long and prosper. Kudos to the associations of the Morningside neighborhoods for endorslegislative process. Lastly, many thanks to Commissioner limit passed, as he promised. Without it, Biscayne Boulevard would have suffered from out-of-scale buildings and speculation stagnation. Elvis Cruz MorningsideCommentary: LETTERS VOTE rrfrnnntbn rrfrnnnr n Kiss Country Afternoon Host Ken OBrien Kiss Country Weekend Dj Dina B Kiss Country Morning Djs: U-Turn Laverne and Kenny Walker LettersContinued from page 10

PAGE 13

Est. 1995BRIAN CARTER, P. A. BROKER ASSOCIATE TOP TEN PRODUCER 2012 | TOP LISTING AGENT 2012cell 305 582 2424 | btcarter@majesticproperties.com Majestic Properties Museum Park | 1040 Biscayne Boulevard Suite 20 | Miami, FL 33132The Darin Feldman Group Majestic Properties #1 Top Producing Group 305 582 6200www.darinfeldmanrealtor.com | dfeldman@majesticproperties.com

PAGE 14

Commentary: MIAMIS KINGBy Jack King BT ContributorHere are some random thoughts on our neighborhood, starting with that Georgia cesspool we call Tallahassee. This year we get to have another election to select yet another head cesspooler. past four years, and virtually nobody in Florida likes him, including the Republicans. Now we get a Democrat, Charlie Crist, who used to be an independent who used to be a Republican, running against him. been cut, mostly on the backs of the poor good. Our economy is still in the tank, and even though unemployment numbers have gone down, its mostly because people have just stopped looking for work. Who wants to get a minimumwage job and still not be able to live on that wage? poor Floridians medical care. Along with the legislature, he cut nearly every social and educational program in Florida, while cutting taxes for businesses. This year he wants to cut another from programs that would help poor and middle-class people. Recently Politico Magazine pub to 14 different parameters, including graduation rates, disease control, and life expectancy. Number one was New Hampshire, and dead last was Mississipbad news. The good news is that were ahead of Louisiana, Tennessee, Alabama, As the Confederacy goes, were doing quite well! Getting a little closer to home, theres an issue that has been bubbling around county hall: What are we to do with libraries? Theres no question that the should we do with our bricks-and-mortar libraries? This is an issue that tugs at my heart. When my daughter was in not just for books, but where she felt comfortable, surrounded by librarians who cared for her and other kids. There is still a need for this scenario, especially for kids who have both parents working. After-school programs can only go so far. for the 21st century? The county needs get its head out of wherever it is and begin to look to the future so that the kids of today have a tomorrow. Moving on to the City of Miami, the rumor du jour is that Commissioner as a city commissioner but is termlimited and cannot run again, will run his wife, Teresa, for his seat. This rumor comes from blogger Al Crespo, who has Commissioner Ethics. Crespo has made his reputation by get ting information out of the city and county from leakers and using public records requests, and hes been relentless, turning up embarrassing information on just about everybody in city and county government. Rev. Richard Dunn, who ran for the city commission last fall, largely with monies tial portion of that money on meals at a While Crespo has been excellent on understanding what it means. And with well mean that the new commissioner As we were going to press, the City of Miami held a public meeting to get input for the implementation of the Coconut Grove Waterfront Master Plan. Not too bad when you consider that this eight years with little action. waterfront has been pretty dormant. Montys and Grove Harbor are paying slightly more than the minimum lease Landing/Grove Key is stuck in the controls a multimillion-dollar piece of city-owned waterfront property, just Thats not a very positive outlook. The one bright spot on the waterfront Club. Over the past years, it has quietly built a solid operation, becoming more responsive both to members and to the community. Unfortunately, it has a very weird lease with the city that allows it to be moved to a new facility if the city is the city is essentially broke and cant afford to build anything. Hey, its Miami! Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com Scott to Sarnoff to the Sasaki Plan A slice of the news, with a little Crespo on the side Photo courtesy of Bill Hansen Catering

PAGE 16

16 Our Sponsors: FEBRUARY 2014By Pamela Robin Brandt BT ContributorBrrr. It sounds unappreciative, coming from an ex-New Yorker whose former abode is roughly 19 degrees below zero, considering the wind chill factor. But considering how many fantabulous outdoor festivals there are in BT s territory this month, were hopeful for many sunny days ahead. One of the fab outdoor festivals is Palette Miami a festive neighborhood fun. Its on February 8, from 3:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at 5700 Biscayne Blvd., on a vacant lot across from 55th Street Station. Thats where the BT is located appropriately, since were the festivals media sponsor. Since there are several other mentions in this issue, well say no more, except see ya there. If its worth doing, its worth overdoing, the old adage goes, and sure enough: The Downtown Miami Part nership (www.downtownmiami.com) announces two other outdoor events, also on February 8. First, the familyand pet-friendly 13th annual Flagler Fest & Classic Car Show. Flagler Street will be closed off for the crowds of people wholl come to check out the collection of vintage cars and hot rods, not to mention the motorcycle show, street performers, historic downtown walking tours, entertainment at the Gusman Center, and more and all free. That Farmers Market (in the median parking lot at 50 Biscayne Blvd.; faceook.com/ ourbiscayne), winner of the Miami Foundations Public Space Challenge for repurposing public spaces as community gathering areas; the market repeats on 2/15, 2/22, and 3/1. Both events run from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., letting out just in time for the opening of Palette Miami. Now thats our kind of day. How about taking the family on a Saturday or Sunday drive to a festival thats not just a road trip, but a time trip? Spend the day in the 13th Century or so at the Florida Renaissance Festival which, for three weekends, March 29-April 13, will be located at Cauley Square Historic Village (22400 Old Dixie Hwy.), north of Homestead. Wander the fairgrounds watching actors in period costumes dem onstrate how European pirates, knights, and tavern wenches in the late medieval period warred, cooked, made crafts, trav eled, and frequently burst into song and dance. Shop at roughly four dozen ye olde souvenir shoppes for your own sword, elf pets. Btw: No pets are allowed, so leave your dogs and real-life dragons at home. For info and tix: www.ren-fest.com. Nows the time to pop in and say hello to a recent arrival in the neighborhood, Design Shop (5582 NE 4th Ct. #7A, 786-859-6365). Owners Lorena and Hugo Mijares, who are also both architects, have stocked their store, located at the 55th Street Station complex ( BT neighbors!), with a selection of unique ing design concepts from cutting-edge serious to seriously funny. (Wouldnt you like to have a designer bird feeder or as you search for a special gift to surprise that extra-special person on your Valentines list. All the more wonderful thanks to a whopping one-time discount of 30% to readers who mention the BT The City of Miami Beach (www.mb culture.com) has a full schedule of outdoor food, movie, and music events this month. The Soundscape Cinema Series, which actually continues through May, will Lord of the Rings (2/5), Lincoln (2/12), Mary Poppins (2/13), Much Ado About Nothing (2/19), and Hellboy (2/26). All start at 8:00 p.m. Also at Soundscape, on February 22 at 8:00 p.m., the citys Arts in the Park program presents a free concert by Tito Puente Jr. and Marlow Rosado. And up at the North Shore Park Bandshell (Collins Avenue and 73rd Street), theres a Food Truck and Music Fest scheduled for February 26, 5:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. For more details/updates on all, visit the website. Assuming it doesnt snow, February is a great month in Miami to put together your own DIY mini wine and food fest. In the old days we believe they were called picnics. Whatever yours can be spec tacular if your wine source is Laurenzos Italian Market (16445 W. Dixie Hwy., 305-944-5052) since, says David Lau renzo, Were continuing our amazing Naturally, Laurenzos can also supply all your other picnic necessities: imported cold cuts, cheeses, breads, olives, des sertseverything but the lawn chairs. To get to your picnic spot the oldfashioned romantic way, bicycle. No Continued on page 18B izB uz zSales, special events, and more from the people who make Biscayne Times possible

PAGE 17

N. MIAMI BEACH 3025 NE 163rd St 305.944.8080 HOLLYWOOD 4150 N 28th Terrace 954.874.3888 SWOOPrfntb brEveryone notices a great accent.

PAGE 18

18 Our Sponsors: FEBRUARY 2014bike? No worries. Bike Nerds (9538 NE 2nd Ave., 786-332-3463) just got in a huge stock of brand-new, old-school line of Giro helmets. If you have a bike for readers: Mention the BT for $10 off Mr. Wood Custom Floors (305-758-7505, clean enough to eat off of. This months deal for readers mentioning the BT : sand At Italian seafood eatery Big Fish (620 NE 78th St., 305-373-1770), on now romantic enough to be date-worthy. waterfront deck rules. Starting this month, the restaurant will be serving lunch and Sunday brunch, as well as dinner. And a off your check of $30 or more for Lunch, Dinner, or Sunday Brunch. new advertiser Buffalo Wild Wings (18721 Biscayne Blvd., 305-962-9995), ago. Like all locations of the national Aventuras Town Center mall features a huge variety of chicken wings, as well as an astonishing number of big-screen HD TVs 64 of them, tuned to almost just watching, in order to try all 18 sauces and four dry rubs. on, but licensed nutritionist Dina Garcia at Vida Nutrition (11098 Biscayne Blvd., off, the way contestants do on TVs The Biggest Loser al caloric needs with maximum accuracy. This month the high-tech ten-minute breath test, normally $99, is only $49 for readers who mention the BT this month that focuses on feeding your mind, not your mouth. Those who is it or not, shouldnt miss the exhibition, Miami-Dade Colleges Museum of Art + Design (www.mdc. edu), Leonard Turkel: Pioneer & Ac Biscayne Blvd.). Another more unconventional musi MDC Live Arts : the National Theatre of Scotlands runaway hit show The Strange Undoing of Prudencia Hart whisky shots, in an actual bar: Bar 337, run 2/19-23: mdclivearts.org. Continuing this seasons St. MarthaYamaha Concert Series (2301 Biscayne Blvd., 305-458-0111), the next two at $10 (including a fun wine/snacks also the love bug month, as Hannah Lasky of Hannah & Her Scissors (611 NE 86th St., 305-772-8426) calls it. So in honor of February 14, shes offering mentioning the BT And since the salon hair artist), its also a fab secret source Valentines Day gifts. Another source of great affordable greater than at the brand-new location of new advertiser Goodwill Industries of South Florida (441 NE 81st St.). For B izB uz zContinued from page 16 Paramount Bay gorgeous 2bedroom $765,000Amazing bay views form this 2/2 in luxury Edgewater condo. Great amenities, huge balcony. White tiles throughout. 1240 Sq Ft of pure luxury.William Harbour 786 762 2602 Recherchons agents immobiliers francophones expriments Now recruiting experienced RealtorsVisit our new Morningside storefront at 5781 Biscayne Boulevard 1060 Brickell Avenue 2bed $465,000Great opportunity to own TODAY in Miamis most desirable avenue. Why wait for pre-construction? This 2 bedroom has beautiful wood oors and great pool and city views. Luxury condo with all amenities.Yann Rouseau 786 762 2602 1Bedroom next to Paramount Bay $250,000Great views, lots of space, new kitchen, lots of closets, bayfront pool and tennis courts this 831 sf 1 bedroom has it all! Unit is currently rented. Waterfront building in red-hot East Edgewater. Dont miss it.Serge Uzan 786 762 2602 Miami Beach Waterfront Home $895,000Waterfront paradise on private gated island. 4be/3ba modern style home with terrazzo oors, impact windows, new kitchen, baths and roof. 60ft dockage on waterfront. Room for pool. All this for under a million!William Harbour 786 762 2602 Midtown multifamily building $530,0005-unit multifamily property in trendy Biscayne corridor close to midtown and design district. All units recently updated. Great income producing, great upside potential close to the Design District; 100% occupancy. Jocelyne Abramoff 786 762 2602 REDUCED South Beach 1be/1ba with parking $275,000Location, location, location! Between Lincoln road and Hispaniola way this rare condo has it all: Open kitchen, lots of closet space, covered parking. Located at pool level, your door opens to the pool deck!Muriel Lhoff 786 762 2602

PAGE 19

ChiroSPAHealth. Balance. Beauty. THE PAIN TERMINATORDR. JARED ROSE, D.C.THIS Doctor Makes House Calls305-834-7900 Miamis Newest Bicycle ShopSales, Accessories & Repairs 9538 NE 2nd Ave. Miami Shores, FL 33138 Mon-Sat 10a-6p786-332-3463www.miamibikenerds.com Let Licensed Nutritionist Dina Garcia, RD/LDN, show you how11098 Biscayne Blvd., Ste. 401Visit www.VidaNutrition.com to learn about our 7 Easy Steps to Permanent Weight Loss786-479-4081Find out how many calories you burn a day with a MedGem Metabolic Test, As Seen On TVs The Biggest Loser, Reg. $99, just $49 for BT readers! Miami ShoresAREA MARKETPLACE Shop local! Support the businesses that make Biscayne Times possible, and tell them you saw their ad in the BT. For more information about Marketplace advertising like this, call Sandra Glorian at 305-756-6200. 305-758-7505 MrWoodMiami.comINSTALLATIONS REPAIRS CUSTOM STAINS & DESIGNS EXTERIOR DECKING INSURANCE CLAIMS SOLID HARDWOOD FLOORS ENGINEERED FLOORS LAMINATE FLOORS MARBLE & STONE CRYSTALLIZATION & RESTORATION Call today for a FREE ESTIMATE! Sanding & Refinishing SUPER SPECIALS:$1.50 SF(min. 1500 SF) OR $2.00 SF(min. 1000 SF) With this ad or mention BT. Serving Miami Shores & South Florida for over 15 years.Drive-Thru. A grand opening is scheduled for February 13. With luck, you may even get that Valentines Day gift for an unbeatable price: nada. Check out this issues ad for the Shops at Midtown Miami and follow the instructions to vote in their Who Wore It Best? contest. (That is, which 99.9 FM Kiss Country DJs had down chili cook-off.) Top winner gets a midtownmiami. On to more serious stuff: The Depart ment of Health, Education, and Welfare. This months news from brand-new Metropolitan International School of Miami in Wynwood (3465 NW 2nd Ave., 305-439-7191), a cutting-edge private institution that so far is only for array of after-school programs will be of fered, such as dance, singing, and acting programs guided by professional teams. Theres also Art Portfolio preparation (for students prepping for an art-focused career). Hmmm, you may be thinking. is only pre-K. Perhaps a little young to get a portfolio together? Right you are. The after-school programs are open to the public and intended for secondary school and high school-age students. At Monsignor Edward Pace High School (15600 NW 32nd Ave., 305is most often associated with its renowned athletic teams. And the term boot camp is usually associated with strenuous physical training. As the cute capitalization suggests, though, Camp, on February 8 from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., is not about athletics or team sports; its an intensive day of art, dance, drama, and music for 5ththrough 8th-graders of both genders. From a wide choice of subjects (draw ing, sculpture, musical theater, band, guitar, hip hop, more), students can attend one morning and one afternoon session before presenting a showcase for parents. Price: just $10, lunch in Dont forget the other children in your family: the doggies and kitties. Whether theyre feeling just neglected and whiny, or theyre truly ill, new advertiser Miami Shores Animal Clinic (570 NW 103rd offers both emergency care and routine medical, surgical, and dental work; does dietary consultations, and more. Then just plain pampering services. Leung Healthcare a medical and two pieces of news this month. First, on February 5, a class on management of blood pressure is scheduled at 888 Leung patients and their guests are welcome. Additionally, Leung just scored sistant, Jean Philippe Charles. Originally from Haiti, he speaks Creole, French, come, whiz kid! In a month when youre having lots remember longtime advertiser Biscayne Dental Center (14771 Biscayne Blvd., 305-945-7745), and thank them for the treatment this month and get either new Glo whitening (a $550 value) or retainers (a $300 value) absolutely free. Residents painting a community mural; a bluegrass chamber choir Okay, the last was not a Knight Arts Challenge winner. We just made it up. artist (in any genre) with exciting, creative ideas but no dough to implement them, this is the time of year to apply for Knight Arts Challenge funding. Dont let the practical stuff intimidate you; the Knight website talks you through the www.KnightArts.org. The applications deadline is February 24. If, on the other hand, youve saved so much taking advantage of the deals above that you have more money than you know what to do with it, schlep it over to new advertiser C1 Bank (2632 N. Miami Ave., www.c1bank.com). You should go anyway, just to see the lobby, which is less like a bank and more like an art gallery. Businesswise, though, services range from simple checking accounts to full business stuff. Though C1 has 26 locations in southwest Florida, genuinely seem to believe in Wynwood and to be having fun. Something special coming up at your business? Send info to bizbuzz@bis caynetimes.com. For BT advertisers only.

PAGE 20

Helen Pierces Pulse won the inaugural 2008 Waterworks competition to transform the sewage pumping station in Museum Park.

PAGE 21

Plans were unveiled last May for a curious, arching, V-shaped structure rising up over the waterfront from downtown Miamis Bayfront Park. Resembling a ski jump on steroids, Miami Lift was actually the winning entry in the 2013 DawnTown Landmark Miami competition. (See this issues cover.) The annual architectural challenge, whose deadline for 2014 entries closed in late January, keeps architects, artists, and designers around the world revving up their computers and creative juices to produce entries that push the boundaries of innovative design to enrich the built environment and the lives of those who inhabit it. DawnTown has been fueling interest in architecture since the organizations inception in 2007. Miami has undergone a radical transformation over the past ten years, and has achieved recognition as one of the fastest-changing cities in the United States. Art Basel Miami Beach brought an awakening in the arts that also generated a growing interest in architecture and design. Everyone knows about the innova tive architecture that happens in places like New York City, Dubai, and Madrid, says Joachim Prez, DawnTowns execu tive director and an adjunct professor at Continued on page 22 An aerial view of Dror Benshetrits winning Miami Lift : The crease gives it structural integrity and strength.Architectural renderings courtesy of DawnTownr fntnnb

PAGE 22

22 the University of Miami School of Archi tecture. We believe Miami should also be mentioned in a similar list. Lets announce it to the world: Miami is a place for architecture. the roster of internationally renowned starchitects putting their signatures on public and private trophy buildings. Among them: the Prez Art Museum Miami and the 1111 Lincoln Road park ing garage by Herzog & de Meuron, another Miami Beach parking garage and condominium tower by Zaha Hadid, condominiums by Rem Koolhaas and Bjarke Ingels, the New World Center by Frank Gehry, and the Patricia and Phillip Frost Museum of Science by London-based Grimshaw Architects. D awnTown began informally in 2007, with a conversation at an Urban Land Institute World Cities conference in Shanghai. Andrew Frey, then a Miami zoning lawyer and now the development manager for CC Residential,and Neisen Kasdin, a land-use attorney and former Miami Beach mayor, began talking about the connection between art and urban development with a Dutch urbanist and art consultant named Kai van Hasselt. In the heady days of Art Basel Miami Beach and a revitalizing downtown and Miami both for the art and the dozens of new residential developments going up in Miami Beach, Brickell, and Midtown what was happening in downtown Miami, which was only then beginning to bloom. That was basically it a short conversation, recalls Frey. We kept in touch with Kai, who wrote up a summary proposal of what an exciting event an architectural competition could be. With the idea of a competition, they decided to draw on downtown Miamis rich and evolving urban context as the perfect backdrop for creative entries, and DawnTown was born. The men agreed that a stand-alone orga nization, with individuals involved in their spare time and with the support of differ ent groups, would make DawnTown more nimble and cohesive. Doing something grassroots with collaborative crowd-sourc ing was important, Frey adds. It meant that a lot of people would buy into it. And indeed a lot of people seemed to think it was an excellent idea. Noted professionals like Terry Riley (then director of the Miami Art Museum) and Jean-Franois Lejeune (UM architecture professor) gave credibility to DawnTown, whose stated mission is to bring creative architecture to Downtown Miami, and to help tell the exciting urban story of Downtown Miami to the world. In 2008, a newly formed board of directors began the process with one advantage: not much money was needed for a competition of that were meant to provoke thought and critical exchange. We had volunteers giving their time, a free website hosting an online venue for the awards ceremony, and sponsors for the prize money, says Frey. The selling point was that we were doing something very tangible and original for Miami. Developer Loretta Cockrum, CEO of the Foram Group, provided funding to help get the competition off the ground, and the Miami Downtown Development Author ity (an independent agency of the City of Miami) came in as a principal sponsor. It sounded like a good idea, to draw attention to downtown, and it was the Betancourt, DDAs deputy director. A variety of issues were in need of design solutions, and the academic exercise of a competition would put those issues through a process and get people talking. You may not ultimately get a solution, he notes, but it can be worthwhile in itself. DawnTownContinued from page 21 Continued on page 24 The Water Drop

PAGE 23

Continued on page 30 2014 SWAROVSKI LIGHTING, LTD. Lighting & BathSINCE 1924 Jewelry for the Home architecture.swarovski.com/shopfinder BLOSSOM

PAGE 24

The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation also proved instrumental in funding DawnTown. We believe that kind of broad-based participation builds on the creative momentum in the commu nity and encourages grassroots ideas to come to the surface, notes Dennis Scholl, director of arts programs for the founda tion. It also reinforces Miamis growth as a place of design excellence. The design issues the contest uses cause the broader community to think about Miami and D in 2007 with a symposium on the future of cities, held at Miami-Dade Colleges Wolfson campus. The events keynote speaker was architect Ricky Burdett, a professor at the London School of Economics, director of LSE Cities, and among many other titles, duties, and honors, the chief architecture advisor to the London 2012 Olympics. A discussion followed his talk, featuring panelists Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk, dean of the UMs School of Architecture; Andres Viglucci, urbanism writer for the ; and DawnTowns cofounder Neisen Kasdin. petitions took place the following year, seeking creative input to transform a hulking sewage-pump station in Bicentennial Park (the future Museum Park) into a waterworks building that would contribute to the aesthetics of downtown Continued from page 22 Continued on page 26BT photos by Silvia Ros

PAGE 25

Great Community Spirit, Parks & Athletic Fields! Morningside Park 40 acres of pure fun & enjoyment including boat ramp & pool! Super Dog Friendly! Near Midtown Shopping & Restaurants! Excellent Schools! Conveniently close to airports & highways while living in a suburban oasis! Just minutes to the Beach! Movin On Up to the Upper East Side!Top things to love about living on the Upper East Side r rfntnbrfntn fnntttbr fntnbnfntn fbntttr rfntnbfntn fnbntttr n fntnbfntn fnntttr fntnbfntn fnnttt NANCY BATCHELOR 305 903 2850 TEXT OR CALL305 316 0660 (NANCYBATCHELOR TeamFrom Modern to Mediterranean r rfntnbfntn fnnttt

PAGE 26

26 Miami and provide space for public information about water conservation. The Waterworks competition drew Finland, and South Korea. First-place winner Helen Pierce of Pierce Workshop in San Antonio, Texas, says her design, titled was inspired by the way I saw the park developing, and particularly the nature of the proposed museums. She wasnt so much interested in making another building as making an art object like a brooch for the park. Its particular appeal was the transforma tive nature of the challenge. Says Pierce: The idea of taking something so unloved and making it into something that could become an icon for the city interested me. In an e-mail exchange with the BT Pierce described her vision: Our proposal was a large piece of moving, noise-making, throbbing public art, an object that has no other purpose than to connect with our primordial senses, to counter the static and intellectual nature of the museums, the body side of the mind/body, a hedonistic experience that is born of the belly of the city and connecting with the cadence of the city. The object, which resembled a giant sea urchin, would be constructed of a steel framework placed over and around the existing pump station. Flexible, curved, photoluminescent (glow-inthe-dark) rubber tentacles with steel reinforcement and illuminated, pulsating tips would extend from the steel armature. By lifting the entire mass off the ground, would engulf passers-by as they approached a digital billboard that wrapped around the base and which could transmit information, from current news in Miami to special digital shows designed for seasonal or special events. The second-place project, showed off the talent of Mikkel Thisted, a young Danish architect who had graduated just a few months earlier from the Aarhus School of Architecture. Third place went to designed by a husband-and-wife team in London: Bryan Astheimer, an environmental designer skilled in sustainable design research, and Sarah Weidner Astheimer, a landscape and urban designer. DawnTownContinued from page 24 Continued on page 28 Beautiful 1500 sf space for rent in Mimo architect Lester Averys Sho Biscayne and 79th. Easy access to 95 and Miami Beach. $2000/mo.

PAGE 28

The following years Metromover competition challenged entrants to design a new station for the Metromover, downtown Miamis elevated train, at a shuttered stop where the art and science museums would be built. The winning entry was submitted by the Australian-based architectural coteam members Rosalea Monacella, Craig Douglas, and Armando Oliver Suinaga. Their vision centered on the idea that a station should be more than just a station; it could itself become an iconic center, a new interactive cultural hub for the city. A massive screen would act as a unifying element between nearby museums and the station plaza, forming a landmark and a gathering place for residents. The station would become a broadcasting unit for each museums programming, from science documentaries to art installations. A large-scale interactive display for images, video, and art installations linking the stations interior to the plaza outside. The expansive atrium, more like an auditorium than a platform, would enable waiting travelers to watch videos or socialize. The second-place project came from team See You Sunday, or Saran Chaiya suta and Prachaya Vanagul in Bangkok. A sculptural, high-tech station design tied together the concepts of art and science, inspired by the nearby museums. Designers Ekaterina Mikhaylova and Ekaterina Vasilieva, team Double Katya, from Saint Petersburg in Russia, took third prize with an entry dubbed for the skeleton-like structure that allowed pedestrians, automobiles, and trains to move through the space uninterrupted. The 2009 judges architects Luis Revuelta and Terry Riley, art collec tor Mera Rubell, Dennis Scholl of the Knight Foundation, Harpal Kapoor of Miami-Dade Transit, and Gillian Thomas of Miamis science museum reported the criteria for its deci sions: Judges liked projects that were iconic and functional, with a scale Metromover tracks and platform in a approval. They applauded the winning spaces of the museums while creating a dynamic public space for the muse ums to use. The ability to celebrate and share art was a plus, while potential revenue-generating opportunities for Miami-Dade County from the screen and plaza also won recognition.DawnTowns 2010 challenge, to design a new seaplane terminal on Watson Island (to replace the old Chalks terminal), again brought entries from around the world, further proof that creativity has no geographical limits. The CA Landscape team, including Trevor Curtis and Sylvia Kim design titled Second place for went to the New York-based team of Stantec, including Vicky Chan, Liange Otero Colon, and Alex Zulas. Third prize for was won by Gerd Wetzel and Martin Plock from Basel. With so many exciting entries, the judges who included Jean Franois Lejeune, Javier Betancourt, and Miamis planning director Francisco Garcia Iglesias, among others gave honorable mentions to designers from Miami, Seoul, and Moscow. In 2011, DawnTown partnered with a local historic preservation group to bring prominence to Miami Marine Stadium, an iconic early piece of Miamis modern architecture period. The Floating Stage challenge was to design a replacement for the large, dilapidated stage that once DawnTown was looking for a complementary structure in an effort to allow DawnTownContinued from page 26 Fish Frame Continued on page 30

PAGE 30

the historic site to become a great event space again. Competition entries arrived from Europe and Asia, as well as South Africa, Australia, and Mexico. Judges included noted artist Michele Oka Doner and the stadiums 1963 designer, architect Hilario Candela. Surprisingly, says Prez, the competi tion didnt and still doesnt receive many entries from South America, despite an extensive online reach that in cludes Twitter, Facebook, and other social media. He also publicizes DawnTown through his blogs, websites, and e-mail. Whats the attraction for people across the world who may never visit this area? Certainly its not the modest $8000 prize to the winning entry. Miami is more interesting to foreigners than to those of us who live here, says the DDAs Javier Betancourt, an urban planner. It takes a fresh set of eyes to appreciate what we have and make it uniquely Miami, even if they dont always get it. He adds, International entrants often pick up things in the environment that we dont always see. According to architect Allan Shulman of Shulman + Associates in Miami, and a 2013 DawnTown competition judge: Architecture is such an international profession, with so much communication that its not easy to tell where anything is from. There are no distinguishing These days, architects arent the only people to compete in the architectural competition. Were seeing disciplines surrounding architecture, says Prez. we dont want to exclude professionals tapping into creativity. Entries have come in from landscape architects, industrial designers, and engineers, among others. Prez says the judges wade through 100 or so entries each year, weeding out those who dont follow the rules and narrowing down the designs with the most creative solutions. In 2012, DawnTowns challenge, titled Design/Build, asked designers to create a low-cost, innovative, and temporary installation on the theme of the Evolu tion of Miami. the win ning design created by architects Manuel Clavel-Rojo (Spain) and Jacob Brillhart (Miami) became a glowing neon map of downtown Miami in 3D. With funds provided by DawnTown, Clavel-Rojo and Brillhart built a 10 x 10 x 10-foot steel-and-neon box that was activated DawnTownContinued from page 28 Continued on page 32 Miami Glades

PAGE 32

by ropes, pulleys, and neon lights. It went on exhibit at HistoryMiami last March. In 2013, DawnTown launched Landmark Miami, a competition that explored ideas about how cities are immediately recognized through iconic architecture for example, Seattles Space Needle, Pariss Eiffel Tower, and Sydneys Opera House. The brief: Create a similarly striking landmark on a site in Bayfront Park overlooking Biscayne Bay, right where the Isamu Noguchi fountain is currently located. Shulman says it was a great experience reviewing entries that approached the site in different ways: This is the sort of thing we should be doing castEurope its common to have public projects as the subject of competitions. In this competition, some wanted to occupy the site with buildings, others to develop it as public space. The judges felt that the winning design, (the ski jump on steroids) by Dror Benshetrits NewYork-based Studio Dror, succeeded in acknowledging the an iconic monument rather than a pro gram. The eye-catching, ramp-like monu ment would contain exhibition spaces, a theater, a restaurant, and a library. An excavated area beneath the building would create an inlet from the bay. Thinking about Miami excites me, Benshetrit tells the BT The city has a clash of cultures at the connection point between South and North America. The obvious duality of Miami is both physical and metaphysical. Because he was familiar with the Bayfront Park site, Benshetrit had no qualms about replacing the Noguchi fountain rather than working around it. He admires Noguchi but notes, You have to be sentimental to a certain point, but when the context has changed drastically over the years, you also have to be practical and create room for something different in this case, a destination. His cantilevered structure was based and giving it a crease. For instance, a sheet of paper doesnt have structural integrity to stand on its own, but a crease creates strength. Quips Benshetrit: Engineers say you can cantilever as much as you want, as long as you have the budget to do it. The 2013 winning designs, how ever, were not universally well received. On the DawnTown website, DawnTownContinued from page 30 Continued on page 34 Amphibian

PAGE 33

FOR SALE $449,000La Playa Properties Group, Inc. 2275 Biscayne Blvd. Ste 1, Miami, FL 33137 LaPlaya@LaPlaya-Properties.comNow Recruiting Full Time Real Estate Professionals305-672-0773LaPlayaMiami La Playa Properties Group @LaPlayaMiami FOR SALE $390,000 Opera Tower1750 N BAYSHORE DR #1414, MIAMI Amazing renovated 3 bed / 3 bath just west of Biscayne Blvd. Grand living room with vaulted ceilings, wood burning fireplace, 2 new A/C units, new electrical panel, new kitchen w/ all new top-of-the-line appliances, stunning Terrazo floors, beautiful zen-like landscaping perfect for relaxing & BBQs. Corner lot close to Design District, Midtown & more. Walk to Soyka, Andiamo, Sushi Siam, and much more! Near Morningside5801 NE 4 CT, Miami PH: 305.672.0773 FOR SALE $350,000Great Investment Opportunity. Lowest price 2/2 in building by $50,000. Large wrap around balconies. Great Building in the heart of Edgewater. Completely renovated lobby with high end finishes. Minutes from Metro Mover station. Great rental income of $2,200/month.WIND350 S MIAMI AV #2505, Miami Spectacular 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom with views of the bay, river and Downtown skyline. This building features 2 pools, jacuzzi, spa, indoor racquetball court, state of the art fitness center, game room, sports lounge, 2 story party room, and screening room. Located within walking distance to Mary Brickell Village, shopping and dining. FOR SALE $999,900Luxury 2 bedroom, 2.5 bath, corner residence with Biscayne Bay and ocean views. Spacious condo with many high-end upgrades. White marble flooring in living areas, mahogany wood floors in bedrooms, and custom wood closets. Envisioned by Lenny Kravitz for Kravitz Design Inc., Paramount Bay's distinctive residential living experience represents the epitome of refined cool, sophistication, pleasure and peace.PARAMOUNT ON THE BAY2020 N BAYSHORE DR #1801, MiamiLinette GuerraManaging Broker 305-915-0148 FOR SALE $490,000Spectacular Direct Biscayne Views from this spacious 3 bedroom and 2 bath unit. Enjoy Gorgeous Sunrises from this SE corner unit with unobstructed views of the bay, Venetian Islands and Port of Miami cruise ships. Brand new building built in 2012 with bayside pool and gym. This is a Great opportunity to live in the New Luxury Neighborhood of Edgewater.23 BISCAYNE601 NE 23 ST #1203, MiamiRich Tallman Realtor Associate 786-554-2353 Jordan LedermanRealtor Associate 786-300-1550 Linette GuerraManaging Broker 305-915-0148 FOR SALE $335,000Live on the glittering edge of Biscayne Bay in this amazing 1 bedroom / 1.5 bathroom. This breathtaking unit features top appliances, marble flooring, a washer and dryer, an immense balcony. Amenities includes concierge and valet services. Conference room, exercise room, TV Lounge, movie theater, 3 table billiard room and pool. QUANTUM ON THE BAY1900 N Bayshore Dr #3610, MIAMIRudy CastroRealtor Associate 305-310-9656 23 BISCAYNE 601 NE 23 ST #302, MiamiLuigi DevotoRealtor Associate 305-992-4255Live and work from your commercial condo at Edgewater. This spacious 1 bedroom and 1 bath unit is zoned for soft professional use. Also, makes a great great rental income as an investment. Owner says SELL NOW. 23 Biscayne Bay is a full service building with gym, social room and security. Unit comes with 1 parking space.FOR SALE $225,000 FOR SALE $499,000Lowest priced unit at 900, This Direct Biscayne Bay condo offers the best in Condo Living. Enjoy Gorgeous Sunrises from your expansive terrace overlooking the Bay, Port of Miami and cross over to the new PAM, the Miami Art Museum and all the new restaurants on Biscayne Blvd. The time to buy is now at this Exclusive Address! 900 BISCAYNE900 Biscayne #1907, Miami Linette Guerra Managing Broker305-915-0148 PROPERTIES Carlos SerranoRealtor Associate 786-253-9551 FOR SALE $490,000OPEN HOUSE FEB. 8th CALL TO RSVP

PAGE 34

comments ranged from high praise to complaints that the projects were unrealistic and unrealizable, and that none said anything about Miami. More sobering was the fact that the winning project had a previous life in Rio de Janeiro and that other entries also appeared to have been recycled for the DawnTown competition.One question often asked about DawnTown is this: If the designs are so exciting, why havent any of them been taken off the drawing board and actually built? Andrew Frey explains that it hasnt years, the competition concentrated on DawnTownContinued from page 32 The Waterbox NOW OPEN IN MIDTOWN MIAMI 2691 NE 2nd Avenue. Miami, FL 33137 786.600.3910 www.elementofurniture.com Continued on page 36

PAGE 36

public structures, which opened up the possibility that the winning designs could become a reality. But the government agencies involved had neither the budget nor inclination to pursue the designs. With the pumping station, Frey says, we took the winning drawings to the staff at Miami-Dade Water and Sewer andmade a presentation with an attractive display of entries. But we never heard back from them. somewhat, with new windows, landscaping, and paint. But thats a far cry from Helen Pierces design for a giant pulsing sea urchin. Says Frey: They could have chosen to renovate the pump stationin a way that captured the spirit of Miami and expresses pride in our city. DawnTownContinued from page 34 Up-Down-Town Lemonade Square Continued on page 38

PAGE 37

rfntbb rf rfnft brtnn nrnnn rftrn bDont miss out on Miamis most exciting opportunity. Oversized twoand three-bedroom residences from the $240,000s. ntbttbb ttbnttnttn nb r fnttbnttntttnttnt rttbrbttbtbtntbt fntnntb ttbrtbtntnntntnttrtbtbtbtbttb bnntrr ntrttttb bttttnrbt tttttbttttttttbbttrbr ttttttb ttrbrrbtbtbbbnttbt

PAGE 38

Frey notes that Miami-Dade Transit was helpful with the Metromover station design challenge. They gave us a com plete set of drawings to work with and seemed a little more interested, but there was no follow-up, he recalls. I certainly would have appreciated a meeting to say, We like this, rather than no conversation. More recently the station was spruced up and reopened, but there has been no attempt to incorporate any of the winning designs. Betancourt says the DDA would love to see a project take on an afterlife. DDAs master plan includes an iconic cially and technically feasible, built to generate revenue from restaurants, meeting places, and other attractions. The apparent lack of interest may be frustrating, but it hasnt deterred DawnTown. The group continues to grow, and to organize both ideas and design/build competitions, meant to provoke thought and critical dia logue. Miami is a great city to be building in, emerging as a great metropolis, says ar chitect Shulman. And DawnTown is a great model for thinkingoutside the box about how we treat public spaces and how we should be inspired by innovative ideas. Other cities call DawnTown principals to discuss replicating the competition. We can tell them that this is something that can be done with very little money, through generous donations of time and money by people in the community, says Frey. DawnTown has demonstrated the capacity to be a great competition. DawnTownContinued from page 36 r ffntb r bb f nffb br f bt

PAGE 40

40 Community News: BISCAYNE CORRIDORDear Ms. Commissioner: Why Cant WeReach you directly by e-mail? Who else is looking at this message? Why?By Erik Bojnansky BT Senior WriterEnbar Cohen wants to be a fulltime Aventura city commissioner, Although Cohens city e-mail is The e-mails of Mayor Susan Gottlieb Her colleagues on the Aventura City Commissioner Michael Stern tells the BT he has yet to hear receive his or her e-mail within ten minutes of Aventura Magazine Continued on page 44 By Pamela Robin Brandt BT ContributorS festivalgoers, many also from far-off Still, many Miamians miss the little A Festival by Locals for Locals With food, drinks, music, art, and fun, Palette Miami celebrates us Continued on page 42

PAGE 41

By Erik Bojnansky BT Senior Writer BT A coalition of business owners, MiMo Biscayne Association members also tell the BT munity wants, says Nancy Liebman, Its a City Street, Not a SuperhighwayWhen it comes to Biscayne Boulevard, FDOT might beg to differ Continued on page 46 Illustrated concepts by Charles C. Bohl, Jaime Correa, Jennifer Garcia

PAGE 42

Community News: BISCAYNE CORRIDOR BT BT even have e-mail accounts for the mayor ing, since it creates a barrier between Biscayne Times to The BT mails sent to the government accounts of Miami, Miami Beach, Miami Shores, El E-mailContinued from page 40 Continued on page 44

PAGE 43

Community News: BISCAYNE CORRIDOR

PAGE 44

44 Community News: BISCAYNE CORRIDOR the BT city commissioners, but not by that citys communications manager, who then er of Biscayne Times other fun things we now have here in Biscayne Times Biscayne Times local business booths, with wares rangFeedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com Palette MiamiContinued from page 40 E-mailContinued from page 42 Continued on page 46

PAGE 45

Community News: BISCAYNE CORRIDOR

PAGE 46

46 Community News: BISCAYNE CORRIDOR Biscayne BoulevardContinued from page 41 rf nftbrf btb frnb rnftttbtbrnbr brbfnbrn nbttbnrtbtr rnbnbtnfrntf tbbtrnnfrttf tbrnbrtbnfnfbrtbbnr bftbntf OPENING NIGHT TO BENEFIT THE PATRICIA & PHILLIP FROST ART MUSEUM WWW.MIAMIARTANDDESIGN.COM ing for changes throughout the entire MiMo Biscayne Historic District, which Thats when Miami Commissioner Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com BT but not at county ensuring that their e-mail messages how you Commissioner Stern believes the city E-mailContinued from page 44 Continued on page 47

PAGE 47

Community News: BISCAYNE CORRIDOR E-mailContinued from page 46 Nevertheless, Commissioner Cohen again, after this years election on November as four of the seven seats on the city commis theyll see the value in being accessible Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com Mayor Susan Gottlieb City e-mail: sgottlieb@cityofaventura.com Direct e-mail: Skgmiami@gmail.com Commissioner Howard Weinberg City e-mail: hweinberg@cityofaventura.com Direct e-mail: howard@howardweinberg.com Commissioner Teri Holzberg City e-mail: tholzberg@cityofaventura.com Direct e-mail: terhar777@yahoo.com Commissioner Billy Joel City e-mail: bjoel@cityofaventura.com Direct e-mail: billyjoel13@gmail.com Commissioner Luz Urbaez Weinberg City e-mail: lweinberg@ cityofaventura.com Direct e-mail: commissionerluz@gmail.com Commissioner Michael Stern City e-mail: mstern@ cityofaventura.com Direct e-mail: aventuramagazine@aol.comE-mail addresses for Members of the Aventura City Commission Commissioner Enbar Cohen City e-mail: ecohen@cityofaventura.com Direct e-mail: Enbar@enbarcohen.com

PAGE 48

48 Neighborhood Correspondents: MIA M I SHORE SConspiracy Al ert: TenthgateA poorly announced, very annoying road closure and information void bring to mind a certain governorBy Jen Karetnick BT ContributorIf all your media time hasnt been absorbed by the Polar Vortex and its chilling effects even down here in Florida, then youve also probably been following the news about Bridgegate. If you havent, here it is in brief: The scandal concerns New Jersey Gov. Chris to close two Fort Lee toll lanes to the George Washington Bridge. The action was alleged to have been political retribution because the mayor of Fort Lee refused to endorse Christie for re-election. Since the closure was emergency service workers, no measures could be taken to avoid the site. It resulted in employees being hours late to work, teachers and children never making it to school, and ambulances and police vehicles unable to attend calls. The death of an elderly woman is being blamed on the closure. Im fascinated by the story in part because Christie grew up in Livingston, New Jersey, where I was also raised. Christie is my older brothers age; they went to high school together and played hand reports of Christies other bullying maneuvers are coming out, and they stem back to the time when he was just starting out in politics. While I never met the man personally or enjoy politics (or baseball, for that matter), I can attest that his attitude and actions are consistent with many folks of his generation who spent their teenage years in a nouveau riche suburb of New York City: You were either the bully or the bullied. The other reason Im fascinated by Bridgegate is because its lack of transparency so resembles whats happening in Miami Shores. Disclosures, which suppress, started coming out in early December right around the same time that the Shores experienced its own unannounced closure this one of NE 10th Avenue. When I say unannounced, Im not being completely accurate. After days of Shores Village Facebook page, two posts stemming from the Miami Shores Police Avenue from 90th 96th Street for the

PAGE 49

next several hours due to utility work. The Miami Shores Police Department advises you to AVOID this area due to a east 10th Avenue has closed from 96th Street to 90th Street and will require a 6th Avenue as alternates. The second post, on December 5, merely updates this alert, correcting hours to days and the remainder of the day to the remainder of the week . Most of us who live on the northeast 10th Avenue to cut through to the 79th Street Causeway as a way to avoid Biscayne Boulevard had absolutely no idea that the main route to our homes had completely barricaded on 90th Street. The only way for hundreds of residents to get home to several blocks west of 10th Avenue was to thread their way through back streets from behind the CVS drugstore. You can imagine the confusion and the unsafe U-turns. Actually, you dont have to imagine it because you can still experience it. The closures lasted for two weeks, not one, and at press time, (an area that was not included in the alert). South of it, the road is intermittently closed, with detours changing daily and the portion that was patched remaining sunken and pitted. Its not an exaggeration to say that Shores homeowners, suffering inconveniences now for two months, are not rant on Ocean Drive with her husband, and who has to traverse this way daily, says, I wish they had better control of the [stop and slow] signs to control other day, the two kids holding the signs turned them to slow at same time. What a disaster. Lisa Shepherd, another resident, gives what I think is the most succinct comment about the whole mess: Its annoying as @#%#. On the other hand, it will ultimately issues in the area, says Ines HegedusBut therein lies the rub. Aside from ers about the beginning and end of the project, no one seems to know what its about. We noticed large pipes but are involved, even though no trucks are around? And whos responsible? Is it a village concern, or a county one? ity websites have yielded no information. In fact, the last time the Miami Shores website updated its news section appears to have been in October 2013. The sites monthly newsletter offers activities calendars but no news. The text under the websites Public Works category yields nothing as well, except that the Streets and Stormwater Divisions function as a multifaceted spebuilding maintenance, storm water management, and local option (street maintenance) applications. the top of the website is behind the times, notifying residents on December 12 that the Miami Shores police were assisting another agency looking for subjects that about the far more concerning rape and robbery of a woman that took place at Street on December 30. We wouldnt know it from public information disclosures, but her suspected assailant was only recently apprehended, thanks to a little girl he tried to abduct and who partially recalled his cars license plate. An interesting side note: The assault was in the City of Miami, but just a few short blocks south of the Miami Shores line. Was that why the village ignored it? Conspiracy theories welcome. Its probably easier to follow the general. I stopped trying to understand delays years ago. In a way, you could suppose that closures and construction But then, criminals dont bother us here in the Shores. Our way of life is under threat only, apparently, by road construction and utility workers. rfrfn rftbrbfbfrr rrbfbfnfrfr rffrbfr rrfrrbfrnbrf fnfrfffrfbfrrfbrbrfn fftbrf rnbrbbbrbrfnt bnf f r b n f bnnnntnt fr

PAGE 50

50 Neighborhood Correspondents: AVENTUR AWill the Sears U pheaval Re ach Aventura?The venerable chain faces lots of cloud competitionBy Jay Beskin BT ContributorLaugh at me if you will. Sneer at me if you must. Mock me if you cannot contain yourselves. But I will say it anyway, without fear or favor: I like Sears. And I have always liked the Sears store at the Aventura Mall, whether I am there to buy a Lands End shirt, a Kenmore dryer, or a new battery for my car. All of which brings me to the current state of affairs at Sears, which is going through a national upheaval (actually, a multinational upheaval since Canada is foreboding and its naysayers with glee. When 50-somethings like me were growing up, we thought of Sears, Roebuck & Co. as an American institution, about as unshakable a cultural icon as apple pie and as unsinkable a commercial enterprise as Chevrolet. We were aware of the Sears company and, second, as a company with the quaint history of having begun in the form of a mail-order catalogue. Back in 1888, Richard Sears began sending out printed mailers to sell his inventory of watches and jewelry. The post material and charged only a penny per pound. This little bit of corporate welfare gave the R.W. Sears Watch Company a leg up on the competition. The advertis ing also came with the promise, according to the website searsarchives.com: We warrant every American watch sold by us, with fair usage, an accurate time keeper for six years during which time, under our written guarantee we are compelled to keep it in perfect order free of charge. By 1897, Sears circulars were show ing up in mailboxes across the country, with an emphasis in the West, where folks

PAGE 51

ranches, and had no regular access to bigcity shopping. The mailers were now in full color and featured everyday household items for sale, ranging from business suits to baby carriages. Eventually business grew to the point that Sears was building department stores in cities big and small. The Sears catalogue has always been a lovable part of American lore. Hollywood the Sears catalogue up onto the porch of the old saloon and the grizzled proprietor or the dreamy barmaid picked it up and gazed longingly at the big-city luxuries inside. Perhaps this explains why Sears didnt go out of style during the Sixties, when the relentless quest for all things modern turned experience, maturity, and tradition into a drag, and objects of scorn. The history of Sears was romantic, and its trajectory from catalogue to superstore became a symbol of progress. By then Sears had already become the worlds larg est retailer. In 1973, Sears built its version of the Tower of Babel in downtown Chicago; the Sears Tower became tallest free-standing structure in the world, exceeding the goan, I experienced that grand moment of city pride. For many years afterward, visitors to Chicago were told by their hosts as soon as they stepped through the door: You must see the Sears Tower! Any hint of a lack of enthusiasm would put a serious dent into their friendship. Airlines. Sears had originally thought its growing business would generate enough employee hires to occupy all that space, but the opposite happened. There has been a fairly consistent decline in its fortunes over the past four decades. In 2009 the lions share of the Chicago tower was leased to the serves as a monument to hubris. prominent Sears store, which looms large as you drive into the Aventura Mall from Biscayne Boulevard, just north of the Lehmann Causeway? Can I count on it being there for years to come, guarantee ing a quick replacement for my DieHard and fade into our collective memory? Several years ago, the majority interest in Sears was purchased by a hedge fund genius investor named Eddie Lampert, who is based in New Jersey. He had been a whiz trust of some very wealthy folks. He devel nies in which to invest, and he announced to its nationwide network of retail outlets, Sears owned prime real estate in the best locations across the country. Later another super investor, Bruce Berkowitz, acquired a sizable share of Sears Holding for his Fairholme Capital Management funds. Somewhere along the line, someone thought it was a good idea for Sears to buy up Kmart to save that company from bank ruptcy but that purchase hasnt panned out very well. If the people behind the idea thought it was going to create credible them wrong. Maybe it was never doable, or maybe Sears lacked the right team to do it; either way, Kmart has lagged seriously and noticeably behind its competitors. which seems to be the corporate equiva lent of acting as your own attorney in a murder trial. His ideas for the future do look good on paper. He wants to shift more to Internet-based sales and cash in on some of the real estate of the stores that early signs of success in the online Shop discounts and a point system with re wards. The ultimate irony is that Lampert is trying to return Sears to its roots as a catalogue, 21st-century style. Most of the naysayers are writing Sears off as a lost cause. They say its too oldfashioned a name and cant be resurrected in this age of Twitter and Amazon. After all, the young people of today dont even recognize it as old in a good way. Its not modern, but I would suggest a venerable 1800s motif in some of the store furnishings, with a period-piece version of the old Sears catalogue in place of the modern brochures. As most Floridians have learned in their personal lives, old works better as proud-old than as pretend-young. F eedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com rff nfftbf KnightArts.org. ffft rrfntnbrrnb nnbnfn fnf

PAGE 52

52 Neighborhood Correspondents: BRICKELL / DOWNTOWNArt Walk to Food Trucks to Beer LogosWhy do so many Miami events reach a tipping point, then morph into parties?By Adam Schachner BT ContributorCraig Chester, my friend and predecessor at Biscayne Times posed the following question to you readers about two years ago: Have the surging crowds at Wynwoods Second Saturday Art Walk sent the monthly event over a tipping point? I can remember talking about it with him back then as he contemplated the orinto an open streets event by banning motor vehicles on those evenings. When he wrote up the idea in Taking It To the Streets (October 2012), the phrase resonated with me. Had Art Walk reached a tipping point? And what other tipping points exist among Miami happenings? Well, theres one trend I couldnt Wynwood Art Walk pedestrian/street performers/partiers/curious onlookers/ stilt walkers/DJs/sidewalk art vendors/ food-truck boom. Theres something about Miami and other international cities that perpetuates this particular trend though I think one aspect of it may be peculiar to Miami. The Miami Tipping Point, like other tipping points, is abrupt but can be detected as momentum builds. A given endeavor gains notice and traction and bubble bursts. The bubble pop isnt exclusive to Miami. Its generally part of a transformation from chic to pass that can characterize any number of new festivals, new restaurants, or New Yorks hottest clubs. These destinations or attractions wear out their novelty for recognizable reasons: Tickets to a beloved festival become exorbitant as branded bands come to play. A rival high-concept restaurant steals the spotlight with a new twist. The hottest club gets strung out on regular crowds. Now, heres where Miami is different from the rest. We dont run our trends into the ground and leave them there to die. Miami loves to default to a good old-fashioned street party. If a popular attraction is open to adaptation, at some point a food truck will show up, or free drinks will be distributed, and, well, the rest may seem familiar. Our bubbles may pop, but weve still got a party. I agree with the proposal to ease Wynwoods Art Walk congestion by in me feels that any street closure would Photo of artist @808urban by @bryanmiami ZACHARY BELILMy only purpose is to deliver exceptional service and successful results. Call me today for all of your real estate needs.917.319.4627 | zachary.belil@elliman.comSpecializing in the neighborhoods of

PAGE 53

only serve Art Walk if it still predominantly attracts support for the arts. As one reader wrote in response to the open streets idea: To me it has been warped into a mindless food-and-beer fest that has nothing at all to do with art. Once I might have opposed that sentiment, but that was before I came upon a series of Wynwood murals stenciled with logos proclaiming they were sponsored by Heineken. I certainly dont dismiss the cultural value of Art Walk. Wynwood is brimming with galleries and exhibits; its walls are ever expanding and offering brilliant displays. I spend more and more time there on a monthly basis, although less and less of that time falls on the second Saturday. Still, if people show up at Art Walk for the galleries, then Im thrilled to know theres a drive for engaging with the arts. Art Walk is not the sole event on the verge of a Miami Tipping Point. Jen Karetnicks August 2013 BT submission, Ride the High Road, discusses another one Miamis Critical Mass mob-run bicycle events that take place on the last Friday of each month. These monthly rides draw hundreds, even thousands of bicycle riders, and Ive been participating happily in CM for years. Unlike Art Walk, the structural model for CM rides is hard to convey. There are pants can suggest routes and post themes or details on themiamibikescene.com, Mi amis online hub for all things bicycling. There are no owners who advertise or sell losophy of CM rides worldwide. At their core, they all share a common purpose of advocating for bicycling, safe streets, and alternative transportation while encourag ing one another to have fun and onlookers to grab their bikes and join. I think I sensed a tipping point loomriders increased beyond several hundred to several thousand. First, local vendors began to show up with coolers of water for sale. Then they were supplanted by product representatives who began giving away granola bars or new sports drinks. Within several months, the trucks also arrived, tossing bottles of Muscle Milk and coconut water by the jumped onboard in conjunction with the Dutch celebration of Queens Day. The rationale for these rides hasnt changed over the years. So why at some point did I start describing them as rolling street parties? Am I just as guilty of perpetuating the Miami Tipping Point as anyone else? Ride the High Road noted the unruly and rude behavior of some of the CM riders. These people, of course, detract from the advocacy at the heart of a CM ride. And at the same time, theyre Tipping Point a certain detachment them, its not about the celebration of an idea; its just a celebration. CM participants who step up to guide about the event. A bicycle advocate with bicycle around Miami, including bike tours that take riders past Wynwoods street art. When I asked him about the winds of change, his answer was illuminating: Consider advertising, he said. Marketers love things that are hot and popular. CM has had entities try to brand it, such as bike shops, but its been so organic that they cant successfully do it. Perhaps the Miami Tipping Point starts when the brands move in. The free drinks are distributed, the merchandise is given away. Soon the event is another product party and the attendees begin to expect the goods. advertisers havent taken successful ownership over anything. They go from campaign to campaign. They havent successfully branded Art Walk or Critical Mass, but its interesting that they always try. I love it that Miami can tout an art district like Wynwood. Im exhilarated when Im riding among the legions of cyclists at Critical Mass. Still, a part of me hurts a little when I see the emblemalongside product placements. I cant help but feel they tip our icons over an edge and away from their authenticity. Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com

PAGE 54

54 Neighborhood Correspondents: NORTH MIAMI125th Street RisingMore antique galleries than ever, bigger than ever, and more expensive than everBy Mark and Rebecca Sell BT ContributorsBack in March 2012, when Bis cayne Times visited NE 125th Street, we reported that the street was turning a corner (Positively 125th Street). And so it is, especially for that thousandth of one percent that includes antique dealers, New York hedge fund managers, stockbrokers, and celebrities. Those mid-century modern antique galleries between NE 7th and 9th avenues that sell $20,000 tables and such from the Mad Men era have expanded fourfold since early 2012, from perhaps 10 to more than 40. Some are making way more money than before. Rents are up, too, from $12 or $16 per square foot a few years ago to $23 and up today. Does this help the economy? Sure. Lots of money changes hands on 125th Street, and dealers prosper. Does this help the neighborhood economy? Well, not so much yet but wait. Storefronts are changing, getting classier, with more upscale furniture galleries. Youve still got your immigration services; your Sassy Bridal Shop, home to bedazzled bridesmaid dresses; and the Beauty Essentials Hair Salon, where you can get your untouchable weave done ($10 wash, $25 manicure and pedicure for guys; the uniform store; and the rest. Lets see what happens when those leases expire. Every month or so, a newly gussiedup North Miami storefront displaces a barber shop as 125th Street transforms itself into a vintage furniture destination, to quote Marc Corbin, owner of Marc Corbin Inc., an antique gallery. If this seems an unlikely magnet for the rich and famous, think again. These gallery owners are setting up shop here as they did along New Yorks Upper East Side near Bloomingdales, and in Stamford, Connecticut, replicating the commuting patterns of 1960s Mad Men 1980s Masters of the Universe and todays local power brokers. Gary Rubinstein, who owned a gallery on Manhattans Upper East Side for 22 years, has expanded his six-year-old Gary Rubinstein Antiques Miami gallery four fold on the eastern edge of the strip. He Vermillion on the western edge beat him. BT photo by Mark Sell

PAGE 55

This has become a destination street because we have 40 or 50 galleries now. Business has dramatically increased, says Rubinstein. Theres no other, easier way to get from Bal Harbour to I-95. You have to go through here. So if youve bought a condo in the St. Regis for $8 million or $10 million and you want to go to I-95, you go here. Rubinstein, who notes that his clientele is mostly from New York, with some Brazilians coming in, says that hed love to see the sign-happy city post banners proclaiming the strip MidCentury Row. Hes so convinced that the day I opened my doors, he says, and weve gone from 3000 square feet to 12,000 square feet. As an indicator of 125th Streets perhaps the greatest promoter and sponsor of antique furniture, recently became a tenant in the building and set up his corporate headquarters next to Rubinsteins gallery. Rolls-Royce, its tan interior worthy of an Art Basel display, parked across from salon. Over at Vermillion, a party of three left a black SUV, pressed the buzzer, and went inside. One of them was Martha Stewart. Shes a regular on the row. Vermillion, of course, is across the street from the Museum of Contempo rary Art, where a stream of trendyand tweedy-looking New Yorkers of means were passing through the new Tracey Emin exhibit of neon art on the violent passions and ambiguities of love and sex. It runs through March 9. The new Prez Art Museum Miami, Art Basel Miami Beach, and Wynwood may have sucked away the magnetic/ city, and perhaps from MOCA. Yet the proprietors of the furniture galleries say MOCAs presence, while welcome and a big reason they started here, is no longer essential to their allure. Their reputations are being bolstered largely by the luxury website www.1stdibs.com. Those arriving in the SUVs and luxury cars jump out, see what they viewed online, make their deal, and drive on. Maybe they drop by Cane Sucre on the corner at sandwich for about ten bucks, or, if their for folkies, microbrews, and home-cooked food, across from MOCA at the other end. Alas, they dont go to the Moca Caf on the south side of 125th, just west of the museum. Its clientele is largely Haitian, though proprietor Rodney Noel welcomes everybody and would love to see you. Between MOCA and the Moca Caf sits Gustavo Oliveri gallery, whose general manager, Andrew Sabba, reports a steady business but wonders if the neighborhood is approaching saturation. There are more best space, the largest space overall. (Rubinstein asserts the opposite. The New York crowd, he says, is also the Miami crowd.) Oliveri, with locations in New York and North Miami, closed its Miami 2012. We were paying the same for 500 square feet there as we are for 2000 square feet here, says Sabba. So whats the economic bounce like around the neighborhood? On Art Basel Saturday, Moca Caf owner Rodney Noel, with his son in tow, was working the kitchen and helping serve parties of four and seven Haitian families, mostly in his white-linen establishment with a full bar. The vibe is $10 toasted coconut shrimp. A college was playing Christmas pop music. Business has been slow, very slow, he says, with no museum or Mid-Century Row bounce. Hes trying to make his money on events like salsa night at 9:00 day Caribbean music night, and Sunday jazz night ($10 cover). His restaurant received $195,000 in Community Reinvestment Act funds for $15,000). Noel is trying to get enough busi ness in the door to make up the difference. As for service, our $3 lemonade at the bar at 4:00 p.m. Saturday took 20 minutes. So if Mid-Century Row is doing dandy, 125th Street still could use some tender lovin care. Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com

PAGE 56

56 Neighborhood Correspondents: UPPER EASTSIDEI My Local Civic OrganizationsHeres to all our volunteer community warriorsBy Ken Jett BT ContributorAs you buy cards for your childs classmates, or that box of chocolates for someone special, or anguish over how many red roses to send and before you make those Valentines Day dinner reservations for two I challenge you to begin a new love affair, right in your own backyard. Start a relationship with your neighborhood. I began my relationship by necessity, an accidental activist. But living in Miami has given me a robust sense of community involvement. Serving as a board member for two civic organizations over the past three years, Ive now been elected to lead them. Both good people who volunteer precious time trying to improve the quality of life in their communities. Over the course of my service, Ive noticed that the same faces tend to be involved throughout the city. The Upper Eastside has several civic organizations, homeowner associations (which are not civic organizations), and Neighborhood Crime Watch groups. All these organizations have members who work hard to make their neighborhoods better, cleaner, and safer, while policing crime and protecting common spaces. Civic organizations exist in Magnolia Park, Bay Point, Bayside, Belle Meade, Morningside, Palm Grove, North Palm Grove, and Shorecrest, among others. Neighborhood Crime Watch groups are thriving across our neighborhoods. Ive had the opportunity to develop relationships with most of these organizations, and Im always amazed at the dedication, knowledge, and skill sets found among these do-gooders. I brought experience, too, but my involvement has enabled me to hone my interpersonal and public-speaking skills, and create conSometimes Ive witnessed such passionate discourse and strange characters that I could have sworn those involved were reading from a telenovela script. But even the occasional mini dramas (which can be fun, mind you) help keep my coaching and mentoring skills from getting rusty. This Valentines Day, think about how involved you are with your community. Do you know, for example, that these organizations and their interactions with city ofdecisions that affect your daily experiences? This month you can honor that area civic organization and attending a meeting or two to see what you can offer for the betterment of the neighborhood yes, regardless of your already stretched and overcommitted schedule. Do you enjoyBiscayne Times?freeThank You!Producing and distributing a high-quality print publication is expensive. Thats one reason so many newspapers and magazines have folded in recent years.

PAGE 57

I dont mean to get preachy here. This isnt about what you should do. Far from it. I merely want to make you aware of these community warriors and invite you to meet them. If you like what you see, then you can determine your level of commitment before you jump in. Is there something lacking in your neighborhood? Is there a city service not being met or a problem that needs resolution? Is there a community program youd like to see implemented? I cant speak for all organizations, but I know that each member makes ours better. With low membership numbers, we can only respond to hot-button issues. As new members come in, we match their levels of commitment with their interests and are able to do more to improve the quality of life in our neighborhood. More members mean we can add more projects and improvements. New members breathe fresh vigor into the group. There are times when we residents need to request better services, stop accountable. Its through these civic organizations that we can voice our collective concerns. Given the splintering of the Upper Eastside since redistricting, not to mention recent gun violence, impending commercial development, and upticks in the economy, this is the time for more community involvement if you want to help build our future. We have a community liaison in in the Upper Eastside. Now is the time to use that access. Now is the time to lobby our commissioners for assistance. While the board members of civic organizations usually work at the city level, Neighborhood Crime Watch groups work locally, with their neighbors and police. Its interesting to note that while there is some membership crossover, the civic and Crime Watch groups tend to have distinct memberships. Crime Watch groups tend to involve smaller clusters of residents whose block captains communicate across the web of groups within the area. These groups have a pivotal impact providing police with valuable information to aid in the apprehension of area offenders. Since no single city or county depart ment can ever know whats going on throughout the government, and since law enforcement cannot afford to station the civic groups to provide feedback to ees. This communication takes many forms from support on initiatives to re quests for services, from holding depart ments accountable to taking issues to task, and from assisting with the development of community master plans to ensuring adherence to city and county codes. Beyond the personal gain of developing skills and creating relationships with also learned how a large city operates and sometimes fails to operate. Its the closest view of the citys workings you can get without being inside the belly of the beast. It has tested my ability to maintain professional respect for the behaviors and poor decisions of the indiIm suggesting that we can enhance our collective impact for the betterment of the Upper Eastside, and saying that we can use your help, your expertise, and your involvement at whatever level. I recognize that were all extremely busy, but just take a moment to consider activism for your neighborhood. And even if youre unable to participate now, please remember those of your neighbors who are able to volunteer and give their personal time to create a better Upper Eastside for all of us. Hold them fondly in your Valentine heart. organization or homeowner association, 305-795-2330, in person at 6599 Biscayne Blvd. or online at miamigov.com/nets/ to see you at an area meeting soon! borhood Crime Watch groups, ask your local civic organizations or contact Citizens Crime Watch of Miami-Dade County at 305-470-1670 or online at citizenscrimewatch.org. Theyll help you ting up a group on your block. We need your help, dedication, and vision to make the Upper Eastside a place we can all call Home Sweet Home. Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com SUCCESS STARTS HERE DIGITAL www.AllisonAcademy.com AllisonAcademy@AllisonAcademy.com ENROLLMENT

PAGE 58

58 Culture: THE ARTSLarry Poons Bedecks a Nature CenterIf inuences are so overrated, why did the artist keep coming back?By Anne Tschida BT Arts EditorIts easy to remember that some of the best art in South Florida is made by Mother Nature, especially if youre walking up to the Marjory Stoneman Douglas Biscayne Nature Center in Crandon Park on Key Biscayne. The shallow ocean waters, fronted by gentle sand dunes and vegetation, always seem to sparkle. Inside the center itself, a Key West-style building with a huge veranda and courtyard, more art forms can be discovered in small exhibits that reveal the lives of sponges, sea horses, or crabs and their shells. But on this particular Sunday morning, people were showing up to see the art of Larry Poons, considered one of the originators of Op Art and a major stract Expressionist movement. The New York-based artists works are found in numerous museums and private collections worldwide, including MOMA in New York, the Tate Gallery in London, and the Art Institute of Chicago. On this sunny day, his latest colororganically with the surroundings for an ex hibit titled One and Only Just for Nature. However, be careful if you ask the famously irascible artist if Floridas on these new works. Hell let you know can read Tolstoy in Swahili and never know that the author was Russian, that the kitchen table is the only constant in most artists lives, and that art stands on its merits as either good or bad, regardless of where the artist is creating it. And most important, a painting, in the end, is really only about color, not about location or surroundings or culture. Indeed his paintings are all about color, deep, rich color that bounces across the canvas. But those canvases come alive and do relate to the world around them; you can see grass or trees swaying within the abstract framing. Or after observing the display of sea urchins, perhaps be reminded of the ocean swells and the creatures buffeted by them. The colors, while dense, are not psychedelic, again making them tied more closely to the vibrant, but natural, landscape of Key Biscayne. Its a great exhibit for the center. Whether or not the paintings are inspired by Florida, Poons is familiar with the land, the people, and the Nature and used to pass through Miami during Hes even won awards, with his wife, for motorcycle prowess. During one of his stopovers, Poons became acquainted with John Long, who runs a motorcycle shop along the Miami River. John is married to Theodora, who is director of the Nature Center. On this morning during the opening of One and Only Just for Nature, she recounts the story of the centers Photos courtesy of Marjory Stoneman Douglas Biscayne Nature Center

PAGE 59

founding, and of its arts program. Back in 1988, Marjory Stoneman Douglas came hobbling in, she recalls, at the ripe young age of 98, to a center that was basically housed in a hot-dog stand. Douglas was one of Floridas most publishing The Everglades: River of Grass in 1947, which let the world know that the wetlands were anything but a tepid swamp. She thought that the little more funding and a larger home in order front of South Florida. So she successsee the center renamed in her honor, and was introduced. Theodora Long says that public can learn about marine life through exhibits and guides. They can wander the grounds. They can see artworks nature themes. There is, for instance, a profound work hanging in one room commentary. The center is also in its fourth year of offering plein-air painting workshops, which are outdoor, two-day training sessions based on the French countryside tradition of bringing artists closer next session is scheduled for mid-Februsale proceeds going directly to funding most prominent to date. The Longs son, Justin, is an artist who has shown widely in Miami. Hes shown in the past couple of years. He he was about ten years old, an outra geous guy and his motorcycle passed through Miami, and then future trips he started making his own art and was browsing art books did he realize that looked in a book and saw a painting and said, Thats him ? With unkempt gray hair and wearis not going to let anybody get away with making clichd comments about anything at his exhibits opening not fairytales. He argues, forcefully, that a story told in Denmark would not differ dramatically from the same story told in fundamentals are the same. Who knows how the delightful title of the exhibits central painting, My Flying Blue Cat would be translated elsewhere? Maybe in its quirkiness, it would be as place. As Marjory Stoneman Douglas One and Only Just for Nature by Larry Poons runs through April 30 at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas Biscayne Nature Center in Crandon Park, 6767 Crandon Blvd., Key Biscayne; www.biscaynenaturecenter.org. Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com My Flying Blue Cat only

PAGE 60

60 Culture: GALLERIES + MUSEUMS WYNWOOD GALLERY WALK & DESIGN DISTRICT ART + DESIGN NIGHT GALLERIESALBERTO LINERO GALLERY 2294 NW 2nd Ave., Miami 786-286-7355 www.albertolinerogallery.com February 15 through 28: Appraisal by Anya Rubin 2630 NW 2nd Ave., Miami 305-438-0220 www.alejandravonhartz.net Through February 8: Contracture by Pablo Siquier 2242 NW 1st Pl., Miami 305-576-1150 Through February 23: Sceneries by Esteban Pastorino Diaz AREVALO GALLERY 151 NE 40th St., Ste 200, Miami 305-860-3311 www.arevalogallery.com Call gallery for exhibition information ART NOUVEAU GALLERY 348 NW 29th St., Miami 305-573-4661 www.artnouveaumiami.com February 20 through April 18: City Skin by Paula Amundarain BAKEHOUSE ART COMPLEX 561 NW 32nd St., Miami 305-576-2828 February 14 through March 7: Textile for Men and Machine Breakers by Carrie Sieh, curated by Bernice Steinbaum 122 NE 11th St., Miami DWNTWN ArtHouse Through February 17: Peace Off Mind by Frank Haines and Christopher Garrett BLACK SQUARE GALLERY 2248 NW 1st Pl., Miami 786-999-9735 www.blacksquaregallery.com Call gallery for exhibition information BRIDGE RED STUDIOS / PROJECT SPACE 12425 NE 13th Ave. #5, North Miami 305-978-4856 www.bridgeredstudios.com Call gallery for exhibition information BUTTER GALLERY 2930 NW 7th Ave., Miami 305-303-6254 www.buttergallery.com Ongoing: HOX by Douglas Hoekzema Sym City by Yuri Tuma CAROL JAZZAR CONTEMPORARY ART 158 NW 91st St., Miami Shores 305-490-6906 www.cjazzart.com Through February 23: Works on Paper by Carlos Fragoso Through February 26: Alibi by Luis E. Gomez COMMUNICATION 541 NW 27th St., Miami 305-571-1415 www.visual.org Through February 24: Spider Galaxy by Carlos Amorales Asile Flottant by Rirkrit Tiravanija DAVID CASTILLO GALLERY 2234 NW 2nd Ave., Miami 305-573-8110 www.davidcastillogallery.com February 6 through March 29: Tender Game by Luis Gispert ARTS 2043 N. Miami Ave., Miami 305-576-1804 February 8 through April 4: The Rhythm of Materiality by Uisuk Byeon The Visitors by Charlotte Squire DIMENSIONS VARIABLE 100 NE 11th St., Miami DWNTWN ArtHouse 305-607-5527 www.dimensionsvariable.net Through February 28: Trued Surface by Lynne Golob Gelfman DINA MITRANI GALLERY 2620 NW 2nd Ave., Miami 786-486-7248 www.dinamitranigallery.com February 6 through March 28: Dark Continents by Marina Font 187 NW 27th St., Miami 305-573-9994 February 10 through April 30: Haussmannization by Jorge Mio, Eduardo Capilla, and Leopoldo Maler EMERSON DORSCH 151 NW 24th St., Miami 305-576-1278 www.emersondorsch.com Through March 1: Ouroboros by Beatriz Monteavaro Chimera by Saya Woolfalk 2247 NW 1st Pl., Miami 305-448-8976 www.snitzer.com Through February 28: Burning As It Were A Lamp by Enrique Martinez Celaya GALLERY DIET 174 NW 23rd St., Miami 305-571-2288 www.gallerydiet.com Through March 8: scry 2, by Kadar Brock GUCCIVUITTON 8375 NE 2nd Ave., Miami www.guccivuitton.net Call gallery for exhibition information HARDCORE ART CONTEMPORARY SPACE 72 NW 25th St., Miami 305-576-1645 www.hardcoreartmiami.com February 8 through March 8: Tapestries by Raimundo Travieso JUAN RUIZ GALLERY 301 NW 28th St., Miami 786-310-7490 www.juanruizgallery.com Through February 1: Urban Ouroboros by Betsabee Romero February 13 through April 12: Martin C. Herbst KABE CONTEMPORARY 123 NW 23rd St., Miami 305-573-8142 www.kabecontemporary.com February 28: Click by Carla Arocha and Stephane Schraenen (Arocha+Schraenen) KAVACHNINA CONTEMPORARY 46 NW 36th St., Miami 305-209-0278 www.kavachnina.com Call gallery for exhibition information KELLEY ROY GALLERY 50 NE 29th St., Miami 305-447-3888 www.kelleyroygallery.com February 6 through 19:Movin On with Neltje, Janet Slom, Soile Yli-Mayre, and Riitta Klint KIWI ARTS GROUP PROJECT SPACE 117 NE 1st Ave., Ground Floor, Miami 305-213-1495 www.kiwiartsgroup.com Through March 15: i-Miami 2013 by Marc Schmidt LOCUST PROJECTS 3852 N. Miami Ave., Miami 305-576-8570 www.locustprojects.org Through February 20: BOG-MIA by Virginia Poundstone Nobody Knows Me Better Than You by Alan Gutierrez MICHAEL JON GALLERY 122 NE 11th St., Miami 305-521-8520 www.michaeljongallery.com Through March 8: Single Solid Burner by JPW3 MINDY SOLOMON GALLERY 172 NW 24th St., Miami 786-953-6917 www.mindysolomon.com Through March 22: Solid Single Burner

PAGE 61

Culture: GALLERIES + MUSEUMS NNAMDI CONTEMPORARY GALLERY 177 NW 23rd St., Miami 786-332-4736 www.nnamdicontemporary.com February 8 through March 8: Consider This by Gregory Coates PAN AMERICAN ART PROJECTS 2450 NW 2nd Ave., Miami 305-573-2400 www.panamericanart.com Through February 8: For One Night Only by Ricardo Brey February 11 through April 19: Made in Miami with various artists PRIMARY PROJECTS 151 NE 7th St., Miami www.primaryprojectspace.com February 7 through March 23: Into the Rainbow Vein by Magnus Sodamin SPINELLO PROJECTS 2930 NW 7th Ave., Miami 786-271-4223 www.spinelloprojects.com Call gallery for exhibition information SPONDER GALLERY 151 NE 40th St., Miami 305-576-2266 www.bakerspondergallery.com February 7 through March 6: Jonathan Prince TUB GALLERY 171 NW 23rd St., Miami 305-573-0610 www.tubgallerymiami.com Through February 3: Recent Works, Transitory Identities by Sandra Ramos February 6 through March 4: Retrospective by Mark Humphrey UNIVERSITY OF MIAMI GALLERY 2750 NW 3rd Ave., Ste 4, Miami 305-284-3161 www.as.miami.edu/art February 8 through 21: BODYPAINTOGRAPHY: An Exploration of Sentiment, Composition and Body Language by Cynthia M. Fleischmann UNIX FINE ART GALLERY 2219 NW 2nd Ave., Miami 305-496-0621 Through March 4: New York by Ingrid Dee Magidson WYNWOOD WALLS NW 2nd Avenue between 25th and 26th streets 305-573-0658 www.thewynwoodwalls.com Ongoing: Wynwood Walls with various artists ZADOK GALLERY 2534 N. Miami Ave., Miami 305-438-3737 www.zadokgallery.com Through February 28: Fearful Symmetry by Carol PrusaMUSEUM & COLLECTION EXHIBITSARTCENTER/SOUTH FLORIDA 800 Lincoln Rd., Miami Beach 305-674-8278 www.artcentersf.org Through March 16: In His Own Likeness with Othon Castaeda, Rocio Garca, Eny Roland, and Mario Santizo ARTCENTER/SOUTH FLORIDA PROJECT 924 924 Lincoln Rd., Miami Beach 305-674-8278 www.artcentersf.org February 23: Sounding the Everglades by Gustavo Matamoros Through March 23: One Out of One Thousand with Jenny Brillhart, Nicole Doran, Katerina Friderici, Marina Gonella, Gamliel Herrera, Babette Herschberger, Kathy Kissik, Rosa Naday Garmendia, Lori Nozick, Kerry Phillips, and Natalie Zlamalova BASS MUSEUM OF ART 2100 Collins Ave., Miami Beach 305-673-7530 www.bassmuseum.org Through February 23: Time with various artists Through March 16: ESL by Piotr Uklanski 1018 N. Miami Ave., Miami 305-455-3380 www.cifo.org Through February 23: Permission To Be Global/Prcticas Globales: Latin American Art from the Ella Fontanals-Cisneros Collection with various artists DE LA CRUZ COLLECTION CONTEMPORARY ART SPACE 23 NE 41st St., Miami 305-576-6112 www.delacruzcollection.org Ongoing: Looking at Process: Works from the Collection of Rosa and Carlos de la Cruz with various artists Through February 8: Cristina Lei Rodriguez FLORIDA INTERNATIONAL UNIVERSITY FROST ART MUSEUM 10975 SW 17th St., Miami 305-348-2890 February 12 through March 9: Aesthetics & Values with Ray Azcuy, Carlos Betancourt, Antonio Chirinos, Maritza Molina, Ralph Provisero, Carol Prusa, Onajide Shabaka, Kyle Trowbridge, and Michelle Weinberg February 12 through April 20: Capture the Moment: The Pulitzer Prize Photographs with various artists 1301 Stanford Dr., Coral Gables 305-284-3535 www.lowemuseum.org Through February 9: Terrestrial Paradises: Imagery from the Voyages of Captain James Cook with various artists Through April 27: The Art of Panama with various artists MIAMI-DADE COLLEGE MUSEUM OF ART + DESIGN Freedom Tower 600 Biscayne Blvd., Miami 305-237-7700 www.mdcmoad.org Through March 8: (in)tangibility by Lauren Pascarella Through March 29: Rituales en Haiti with various artists Following Your Own Sense of Justice by Leonard Turkel Through July 12: MDC Permanent Art Collection with various artists MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY ART 770 NE 125th St., North Miami 305-893-6211 www.mocanomi.org Through March 9: Angel Without You by Tracey Emin PREZ ART MUSEUM MIAMI 1103 Biscayne Blvd., Miami 305-375-3000 www.pamm.org Through February 23: The Craft of Modernity by Amelia Pelaez Project Gallery: Bouchra Khalili Through March 16: According to What? by Ai Weiwei Through April 20: Yael Bartana Through May 25: A Human Document: Selections from the Sackner Archive of Concrete and Visual Poetry with various artists For Those in Peril on the Sea by Hew Locke Through July 27: Image Search: Photography from the Collection with various artists Through September 28: Monika Sosnowska THE MARGULIES COLLECTION 591 NW 27th St., Miami 305-576-1051 www.margulieswarehouse.com Through April 26: The Margulies Collection at the Warehouse with various artists, curated by Katherine Hinds The Wisdom of the Poor: A Communal Courtyard by Song Dong Calzolari, Kounellis, Pistoletto by Arte Povera Paintings and Sculpture 1986 2006 by Anselm Kiefer Foto Colectania Foundation, Barcelona, Spain, Chema Madoz with various artists THE RUBELL FAMILY COLLECTION 95 NW 29th St., Miami 305-573-6090 http://rfc.museum Through August 1: Chinese: 28 Contemporary Chinese Artists at the Rubell Family Collection with various artists THE WOLFSONIAN FIU 1001 Washington Ave., Miami Beach 305-531-1001 www.wolfsonian.org Through May 18: Bust of a Doctor by Gideon Barnett The Birth of Rome with various artists Rendering War: The Murals of A. G. Santagata by A. G. Santagata Echoes and Origins: Italian Interwar Design with various artists Compiled by Melissa Wallen Send listings, jpeg images, and events information to art@biscaynetimes.com Melissas Pick Melissa Wallen Dog Fight

PAGE 62

62 Culture: EVENTS CALENDAR Culture: EVENTS CALENDARReal Fado, Real SensationFado is the quintessential sound of Portugal, related to its similarly intense, voice of fado is Antonio Zambujo mixes in cadences from North Africa Amalia his name, has toured internationally, and Rhythm Foundation, at the Aventura Arts and Cultural Center (3385 NE 188 Friday, February 7 at Cuban Music, Truly Global Global Cuba Fest Friday, February 7 Saturday, Febru ary 8 The Russians Are Coming Symphony of Psalms Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini From Swampy Love photographer Clyde Butcher holds his the event Saturday, February 15, and Sunday, February 16, at this time, he leads guided tours through Mapping History Saturday and Sunday, February 8 and 9 the Miami International Map Fair

PAGE 63

Culture: EVENTS CALENDARRussia with Love takes place Wednes day, February 12 at the Arsht Center for the Performing Arts (1300 Biscayne Blvd., Miami), at 7:30 p.m. Tickets cost $20; www.arshtcenter.org.An Art Fair Kind of TownMiamis art fairs exist in little architec tural gems, in tents on the beach, on boats, and in the middle of bustling Midtown. From Thursday, February 13, through Monday, February 17 one more addi tion to this list, Art Wynwood returns to Midtown for a second year, with 70 international galleries, not to mention street art. Its an offshoot of the Art Miami enterprise and attracted more than 25,000 visitors last year. (It also coincides with the Yacht and Brokerage Show in Miami Beach.) Here, in a less hectic atmosphere than at Art Basel, you can check out whats new and hot (3101 NE 1st Ave., Miami) for $20; www.artwynwood.com.New Sounds for a New CenturyPerformer, composer, producer, and educator Juraj Kojs could be called an electronic and multimedia artist. The native Slovakian, who makes Miami his home, has been the recipient of numerous awards and has had his compositions featured at festivals and conferences in Europe, Asia, and the Americas. He appears with Signals which runs on Friday and Saturday nights from February 14, to Febru ary 28 The audience can play with the various sounds that Kojs creates rooster calls, ringtones, video game squawks during performances. Signals includes collaboration with a dancer and designer, and is part of the Sandbox Series at the Miami Theater Center (9806 NE 2nd Ave., Miami Shores). Tickets cost $20; www.mtcmiami.org.Some Top-Notch Scotch The Strange Undoing of Prudencia Hart from the National Theatre of Scotland is loosely about a professor who ers as the snow starts to fall. But the Edinburgh Fringe Festival hit puts you in the bar as well, Bar 337, to be exact (337 SW 8th St., Miami, former home of Performing Arts Exchange), to drink and sing along with the cast. Prudencia sets out the barstools from Saturday, February 19, through Sunday, Febru ary 23 at 7:30 p.m., presented by MDC Live Arts. Tickets cost $30; www. mdclivearts.com.Our Animals Need a HomeOn Saturday, February 22 you and your favorite pets are invited to take a mile-long stroll through Bayfront Park (301 Biscayne Blvd.) starting at 8:30 a.m. for a Walk for the Animals awareness event. In fact, you dont even need to bring an animal, but you are encouraged to visit the adoption information and start your own fundrais ing page at walkfortheanimalsmiami.com Compiled by BT arts editor Anne Tschida. Please send information and images to calendar@biscaynetimes.com Songs From the South of AfricaThe music of Soweto, South Africas most famous neighborhood, became for many the backdrop to the anti-apartheid revolution. Now the 24-member Soweto Gospel Choir Music Awards, and an Oscar nomination for Best Song, offers Miami an eclectic program, including gospel, that kicks off Black History Month. The group has latest CD includes collaborations with U2 and Johnny Clegg. The choir begins a North American tour, which includes a tribute to Nelson Mandela, at the Arsht Center for the Performing Arts (1300 Biscayne Blvd., Miami) on Wednesday, February 5 at 8:30 p.m.; tickets range from $35 to $45; www.arshtcenter.org. Saint Martha Yamaha 2013-2014 Concert SeriesPaul Posnak, Founding Artistic Director In their first South Florida appearance, Englands VIDA GUITAR QUARTET perform Manuel de Fallas Millers Dance and El Amor Brujo, Adam Gorbs Yiddish Dances, Malcolm Arnolds English Dances, excerpts from Georges Bizets Carmen, and an amazing all-guitar Rhapsody in Blue. VIDA conjures up an orchestral palette of colour and effects . they play with TECHNICAL BRILLIANCE AND PRECISE ENSEMBLE creating alternately smoky and glittering colours in Fallas El Amor Brujo that suit the gypsy heart of the music so well. Classic FM Magazine Its so easy to imagine youre listening to an entire orchestra . exquisite tonal and dynamic control, super-tight ensemble and unerring musical instinct . THERES ONLY ONE WORD FOR IT: MAGIC. GramophoneVIDA GUITAR QUARTET | Sunday, February 9 at 3pm Duo Duos from Japan and Germany. Duo Yamamoto won the Gold at 12th Murray Dranoff International 2 Piano Competition in Miami. HANS-PETER and VOLKER STENZL won the 2nd Dranoff Competition and have illustrious international careers. Together they will feature classics, jazz, and musical surprises, including our commissioned Martha and Mary Meditation. Hear them at duoyamamoto.com aand stenzl-pianoduo.net. DUO YAMAMOTO & THE STENZL BROTHERS Sunday, March 2 at 3pm TO PURCHASE TICKETSVisit saintmartha.tix.com or call 1-800-595-4849 or purchase at church office or at door. More info. 305-458-0111 and 305-751-0005. All programs are subject to change without notice. Friend us on Facebook! Saint Martha Concerts Saint Martha in the Shores 9301 Biscayne Blvd., Miami Shores

PAGE 64

64 Columnists: POLICE REPORTSBiscayne Crime BeatCompiled by Derek McCannWhen your Annoying Relatives Call.NE Miami Place and 62nd Street Going for a walk in Miami can be pleasant with those palm trees and that beautiful wintery breeze; however, you probably should carry dollar bills to appease the locals. A shabbily dressed man approached our victim asking for a buck and was refused; he then asked to use the victims cell phone and was told the phone wasnt working. But the phone rang, much to the disgust of the vagrant who then wrestled him to the ground and punched him several times, even pulling out a gun! He demanded and got the phone, but not the dollar. No arrests have been made, sadly teaching us that the Miami stroll has become just another anachronism.Wing that Presentation Now in Your Stinky Clothes1600 Block of N. Bayshore Drive Staying at the Marriot is great unless you need a smoke; hotels have become so fussy about that carcinogenic habit. This so he just opened the sliding glass door and walked around the area to enjoy his cigarette. Unbeknownst to him, however, someone was watching the whole scene and entered the swanky room and took his laptop. Laptops are just meant to be stolen, it seems, so we should always have that old desktop handy in the closet. police theyll all have to wait for the video while our thief catches up on the Grammys on YouTube. And our victim likely lit up many more that day after this incident.A Miami Story Heard Too Often200 Block of NE 25th Street The rents have risen in our transient wonderland, but people still want to a good roommate once your sister gets married. Victim had lived with this stable roommate for over a year, and things seemed quite tranquil. One day without warning, the roommate was gone, as well as much of the victims belongings; the roommates whereabouts, like most Miamians once they abandon ship, are not known at press time. Victim contaminated the scene anyway with her hands and now has to resort to sabotaging her sisters marriage to cover her overpriced rent.Paranormal Activity Tryouts in Miami6500 Block of NE 5th Avenue Sometimes our criminals dont make much sense; they just want their COMPLETE BUSINESS SERVICES 12555 Biscayne Blvd. North Miami, FL 33181-2597 Tel: 305-895-6974 | Fax: 305-891-2045 Email: ppspost@earthlink.net T.M.Est. 1980

PAGE 65

presence to be known: Hear me roar! The victim left her home early two days in a row for work and returned later only were opened, the lights were turned on, and her dog was roaming about, having been let out of his cage. Either that is a trick dog or they need to start installing hidden cameras in that house. Perhaps we will get some cool footage of that might just get another lame criminal lighting up his crack and petting little Fido. No arrests have been made.Swat Team Will Wait for the Next Call100 Block of NE 79th Street called, for better or for worse; these brave men and women risk their lives at times to ensure a safer Miami, or at least A man who lives alone left his wallet on the dining-room table and left for the day (without taking any money or ID, I guess), and when he returned, the wallet was gone. No sign of forced entry and no evidence of a break-in at this time; the his wallet, so why not call 911? After doubt if they gave him access to the elite K-9 unit.Now We Know the Answer to the Prior Report401 Biscayne Blvd. Everyone wants to be a big shot because Scorsese movie. This wannabe ordered drinks through the night and, I guess as a demonstration of what a deal maker he was, placed his wallet on the bar, likely to demonstrate how big it was; I guess wallets that hold one credit card. In the process of ordering a new round, sudties disappeared. Between self-absorbed victims and Houdini perpetrators, this is a story repeated far too often; guess the dining-room table sounds better.Progress Is Not Perfection for EveryoneNE 2nd Avenue and NE 5th Street need to jaunt around town for necessary life functions. Much as drivers may fantasize about knocking them off the road, they have their place in our Miami living. This student rode his bike and chained it to a signpost and then registered for classes; with the price of books, better not to have a car payment. When he returned to get his bicycle, thankfully it was still there, a Miami delight. But there was still a bite from our crime brethren as the bicycle seat was Monty, you remove one little article to At Least They Still Can Advertise Color Television5100 Block of Biscayne Boulevard We love our famous Boulevard Motels the years. An employee who gets free room and board decided that this was not enough and went to another apart ment and pulled out the air-conditioning unit from the wall; we guess his room ticket request for that? There is video surveillance everywhere and police were called to arrest him, but he had left his room and was on the run; why canvassed the area and no arrests have been made, but hopefully for him, that unit can be pawned for a piece of his future bail money.Not Like the Movies Anymore4700 Block of Biscayne Boulevard For years Americans have followed the pursuits of bandits who steal that infaquest, such named case, according to the prospective clients sitting across from him asked for water. The victim, thinking a big deal was about to go down, fetched them the water but returned to see that the great heist had occurred. The conquering robbers did make their score, but how many tens of thousands were in that bag? They got to split $110 in U.S. tons of cigarettes, by the way. The poor economy is hurting our anti-heroes too. Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com rfntbb bbrrbrr br877.771.2670 gutter cleaning roof washing pressure washing window cleaning

PAGE 66

66 Columnists: PARK PATROLA Paradise of Blue and GreenEnjoy serenity, a playground, and panoramas next to the Rickenbacker CausewayBy Jim W. Harper BT ContributorI thought Id seen all the good places along the waterfront, but then along came Alice. Not the drunken Alice in Concreteland whom I met in Bayfront Park a few years ago in this column no, this is a serene, greener Alice from Coconut Grove, with the pedigree of Vizcaya. Lebron James admires Alice so much that he visits her garden to play pickup games. Geologists praise her rock collecStop the Lebron wagon did someone say cliffs them and climb them at Alice C. Wainwright Park. Its strikingly unique and beautiful, and it earns my highest ranking for a park run by the City of Miami. mercial here for Nike that shows him dribbling with kids on the shady court; in reality he lives not far away on the waterfront. Even closer are envyinducing mansions along the secluded street leading to the park. (I want to live here so badly, I might start playing the lottery.) The neighborhoods big kahuna is Vizcaya itself, which you can see from the parks seawall. The parks only real drawback is also its secret advantage a dead-end street with little parking. On weekends do not drive here. Run. But on weekdays, when the weather paradise of green and blue. Alices park is the opposite of the Dolphin Expressway, the anti-expressway. It makes you feel sorry for people who dont live here. Situated at the busy crossroad of the Rickenbacker Causeway with the mainland, the park is buffered from noisy most of its 21.44 acres. You know the bushy area on your right as you approach the Rickenbacker tollbooth? Thats it. You cant see much from the road. Trail, the roads around the park attract joggers and cyclists. To get there by car (on a weekday), turn east onto the road immediately north of Vizcaya. Enter the park through a black metal gate located in the center of SE 32nd Road. Aging bathrooms and water fountains are provided, but only one of the three fountains functioned when I visited. Homeless people appear to have semi-permanent status in this section, as evidenced by scattered suitcases and paraphernalia on the picnic tables under mature oak trees. Otherwise, litter is surprisingly scarce, especially in the bay waters, where I expected to see it smothering the seawall. Some force is keeping it clean could it be the princes of Miamis Bel-Air? Families appreciate the basketball court and clean playground, completed in 2010 and surrounded by open grass. Also in 2010, a series of exercise stations were installed near the bay. But the real attraction is the view. Standing on the Atlantic Ridge, the high ground of Miami that attracted its earliest inhabitants, you look down at the panorama of the open bay and ocean beyond. As if perched on a billionaires veranda, you hover more than ten feet above sea level. Walking toward the bay, you encounter a jagged cliff that drops abruptly. Dont jump! This natural limestone formation is part of the Miami Rock Ridge, more poetically known as Silver Bluff, which dates to 125,000 years ago. I actually saw children climbing on these cliffs (rock climbing in Miami!), and natural steps and paths make them easy to navigate with strong shoes (not stone will cut bare feet to shreds. Full of fossils, the cliff features linear tube-shaped formations that were constructed by an ancient burrowing shrimp, reminding us that this location was underwater in the distant past. Made of Miami, or oolitic, limestone, the cliff extends northward for about 300 feet before disappearing into the soil. Below the cliff is the parks newest May 25, 2012, its stone benches and memorial plaque were donated by Team Stand Up and Reach Miami. The parks prime real estate along the waterfront is a grassy meadow about 50 feet wide that takes a sharp turn left and continues for several hundred feet to the causeway. This strip joined to the BT photos by Jim W. Harper ALICE C. WAINWRIGHT PARK 2845 Brickell Ave. (entrance on SE 32nd Road) Miami, FL 33129 305-856-6794 Hours: Sunrise-sunset Picnic tables: Yes Barbecues: Yes Picnic pavilions: Yes Tennis courts: No Yes Night lighting: Yes Swimming pool: No Playground: YesPark Rating Rickenbacker Causeway Brickell Ave

PAGE 67

opening makes a giant L-shape. With no obstructions, the simple seawall frames a spectacular view of blue. Key cant compared to the open water around it. Heres where the barracuda and the needle Shallow Biscayne Bay blends seam lessly into the deep Atlantic Ocean. Colorful sailboats hover in the distance. To your left are bridges over still waters, to your right is Mercy Hospital. Closer still is the bizarre stone barge, part of Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, that perches in the Unlike that estate, which costs $18 to enter, this view is free. pavilions attract many users, while the three large wooden pavilions, tucked away in a woodsy corner, stand empty. Here a pair of jeans lies across one table. On the Last year the park won the category for Best Picnic Spot from the New Times the Miami City Commission; Wainwright was also a champion of the environment. Given its central location, the park probably holds many secrets. Snooping around under the Australian pines near the causeway, I found a vinyl record. Produced in Hialeah, it offers 30 exitos de ayer y de hoy. Violines de Pego cially prohibited. They bring dogs, which is allowed or not, depending on which sign you believe. But mostly they bring their kids. A white-haired woman brought a chair and a book, and settled into the grass near the bay under the shade of a giant coconut palm. With the cliff behind the picture of peace. Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com MIAMI, FLORIDA MONSIGNOR EDWARD PACE HIGH SCHOOL G R A T I A E T V E R I T A S beautiful 56 18 Monsignor Edward Pace High SchoolEnroll Today!Be a part of the Spartan tradition!Online at www.pacehs.com/admissions @PaceSpartans We are PACE! Partners Academics Catholic Empowerment

PAGE 68

68 Columnists: ALL THINGS ANIMALLife Lessons from the Snake Slayer Moving on is simple, but its not easy By Wendy Doscher-Smith BT ContributorSome years ago I lived a few hours north of Miami, where I rented a quaint guesthouse from a friendly, dog-loving couple. One day a curious, perhaps confused, smallish black snake slithered onto the patio. So I fetched the owners of the main house. Out they came, only too happy to investigate. With a shovel in hand. Unsure as to why the shovel joined the party, I became uneasy and immediately regret ted summoning them. Amiable as these folks were, I knew they didnt mess around when it came to their property and anything that might pose a threat to it or, I suppose, its inhabitants. This fact, I concluded far too late, extended to snakes. I tried to thwart the upcoming bloodbath. Oh, hey! You know what? Never mind. Im sure its not poisonous. Ill just get a bucket and Too late. Without hesitation, they opened the screen door and, upon discovering what was most likely an innocuous garden snake, proceeded to chase it outside and smash it repeatedly with the shovel. I stood about three feet away from the spray of exploding reptilian brain bits, cringing and yelling, Stop! Enough! Christ! Its DEAD! Smashsmashsmash. Talk about overkill. quick, and violent actions of my landlord Snake Slayer that day, I did learn a few life lessons. The most important lesson but its not easy. I shall now impart this wisdom unto you. Ready? Here it is: Move on. This concept of moving on is one Ive never embraced and, in fact, always avoided. One reason is that, true to my Cancerian roots, I dont like change. Also Im very loyal, sometimes to a fault, which also not a new-age, Namaste-chanting type who prides herself on ever evolving, a process that for some reason requires end mtcmiami.org (305) 751-9550Spring Break Theater CampWhile schools out, well keep your kids entertained with theater games, improvisation, acting, music, and dance.March 24, 2014 9 am 4 pm $200.00 for ve days Ages 6 12 Registration also open for Musical Theater Summer Camp Session 1: June 927, 2014 Session 2: July 14Aug. 1, 2014 BT photo by Wendy Doscher-Smith

PAGE 69

outlets. Much like some lizards that auto matically regenerate new tails once theirs are ripped or chewed off, these people really know how to, you know, move on. And for that I do give them credit. The reason I bring this up is because its time for me to move on from contributing to Biscayne Times As someone who has served as a columnist, neighborhood correspondent, news reporter, and photographer for this paper for eight years or so, this is a decision I ruminated about quite a bit and did not take lightly. But to put it bluntly, as another saying goes, shit happens. As I retraced my steps, reminiscing over the assorted topics I addressed, I realized that my monthly contribution or contributions to this paper have remained the one constant in my life throughout the majority of the past decade. This, frankly, freaked me out. Thats a big chunk of my life. I became a groomer, rented and owned houses, moved from Miami and returned, experienced the devastating loss of a handful midlife crises, and was chased out of my bathroom by a palmetto bug that left me no other option but to relieve myself in an aluminum pot while my dogs, clearly puzzled, watched. And it is all documented in this papers archives. I moved from Miami to Binghamton (or as I refer to it in my archived columns, the MUFT, or Merciless Un-Frozen Tundra), New York, and continued writ ing material that resonated with Miam ians, even though I crafted the copy while cursing dirty snow piles outside despite the heat being set at 78, because, dammit, it never warmed up there! Likewise, I never warmed up to living in the great Popsicle of the Northeast. So I spent two winters in Miami, living in a condo on Brickell while my husband re mained in the MUFT. From there I wrote about anything Miami-esque, including the strange habits of my fellow condo dwellers, ghosts in the elevators, waking up to a helicopter whirring outside the balcony of my high-rise apartment, and other notables. Eventually my husband secured a job back in Miami, and all of us (animals included) lived together again. Being a native Miamian makes me unique by default. There arent many of Visit our contemporary Lighting Showroom 305.423.0017 us. I think growing up here offered me a perspective on the city that most never had and cant attain, as well as a healthy appreciation for oddities. From the start, and even while addressing newsy items, I infused my columns with humor. This approach earned me fans and enemies alike. Such is the life of an opinionated writer. Not everybody shares the same sense of humor. Hell, some people have no sense of humor. In any case, BT readers could and did say many things about my little yarns, evidenced by feedback published in the Letters section. Many things, that is, except that they were boring. So I consider my run at the BT a success, and am grateful for the opportunity to voice an opinion, which, at or traveled outside the box. (What is it with all these paper goods metaphors for expressing creativity?) Thank you to everyone who read my rants. While my time with the BT is coming to a close, I am by no means going to shut up. (Sorry!) Writing is a fate that chooses you, as opposed to the other way around. It chose me when I was in grade school and Ive been at it ever since in nearly every format available. The format that I most enjoy and seems to suit me best is that of a humorous essay. And I will keep writing them. While I have addressed a variety of topics in my years of humble servitude to this paper, there are many other subjects I never typed a word about, and I am more than ready to spout off about now. For ex.: pro basketball. Huh? No, really. After seemingly popping out of the womb as a proud and adamant selfproclaimed hater of all things involving a ball or ugly uniforms (just ask my college roommates about my temper tantrums during football season at UF), I am what my husband calls a Miami Heat Super Fan. I dont know about that, but So, yeah. Ill be around. On Tumblr. On Facebook. On Fox News. (Gotcha!) And while parting from the BT is, as one famous writer once said, such sweet sorrow it is also, I realize, to quote yet another not-sofamous poet, my former Landlord/Snake Slayer, indeed time to move on! Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com

PAGE 70

70 Columnists: PICTURE STORYBy Paul S. George Special to the BTOne of Greater Miamis signature buildings is the Miami News/ Freedom Tower, which served newspaper, the Miami Metropolis later known as the Miami News Later, the building housed the Cuban Refugee Assistance Center. The building was designed in the mid1920s by the stellar New York architectur designed the Biltmore Hotel, the Breakers in Palm Beach, and downtown Miamis Ingraham Building. The architects used the inspiration for their design. Upon its completion in 1925, the building, stand ing 279 feet tall, was the tallest structure After the Miami News moved to a location on the Miami River in 1957, the building was sold and was sparsely occupied in subsequent years, before the federal government leased it in 1962 and operated it as the Refugee Assistance Center until 1974. Many of the hunCastros Cuba in the 1960s and 1970s received assistance there, services that ranged from medical care to clothing, food, and employment assistance. After the program closed in 1974, the building fell into dis array. Its fortunes began turn ing around in the late 1990s, and especially after 2005, when Miami developer Pedro Martin, its owner at that time, awarded it to MiamiDade College. The college has spent vast sums restoring the building to its original splendor. Today the Freedom Tower hosts college and civic events as well as art ex hibits, and its future appears as bright as the beautiful lights illuminating it nightly. To order a copy of this photo, please contact HistoryMiami archives man ager Dawn Hugh at 305-375-1623, dhugh@historymiami.org. Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com Photo courtesy of HistoryMiami, 2001-376-281 Life and Times of the Freedom TowerA view of our past from the archives of HistoryMiami

PAGE 71

Columnists: YOUR GARDEN Surprise! That Weed Is Delicious!Just be sure you can ID what you pick By Jeff Shimonski BT ContributorEver since I was a young boy, Ive enjoyed a good fresh salad. It never ceases to amaze me, all of the different ingredients you can mix into a salad. One of my favorite salads is a cucumber salad. Both my grandmother and mother made them for dinner oc casionally, and I would always ask for more, without all the onions, of course. These days I like to try lots of differ ent fruits and vegetables, even a bit of protein, and I always enjoy trying new salad dressings that complement the great fresh ingredients. The accompanying photo is of minicucumbers in a strainer basket; theyve just been cleaned after being freshly picked out of my garden. Id always wanted to try eating these cute little fruits, but when Id go to look them up in the literature, Id often read warnings about their purgative effects on ones digestive tract, especially when the fruit was ripe. The plant is Melothria pendula or creeping cucumber. This is a common that is often found growing in fullsun locations. They often grow on top of other plants, along fences, or even atop stuff lying about in a messy yard. There are a number of species of this mini-cucumbers found around the world; several of them are supposed to be edible straight from the vine or pickled but just in case, the species that ripens to a black color can make you ill, or so the literature says. Now, its important to be careful when handling something unfamiliar, especially a food item. But over the years, especially with many of the so-called toxic plants or plant parts, its hard to the claim of its toxicity. So in the interest of science, of course, I decided to test the fruit myself. At the start of my experiment, I picked a single ripe, shiny green fruit and bit it in half. Out squirted this fresh and delicious cucumber taste with just a tiny hint of bitterness. Over the course of a few days, I ate the fruit from several different creeping cucum ber plants and never experienced any negative side effects. Be cautious, however. There are some local weedy vines that may appear similar to creeping cucumber, so make sure you know what youre looking at because some of them may be toxic. Of course, the real test of edibility was to host a dinner that featured a salad with the mini-cucumbers in it. So I persuaded my favorite chef, Monica, to concoct a salad featuring this fruit. One night we had for dinner, just the two of us, a salad and a nice chilled bottle of Pinot Grigio. Knowing that I like lots micro-greens of kale and spinach, small slices of watermelon, mini-tomatoes, Parmesan cheese, and prosciutto, and topped all these ingredients with a vinaigrette dressing made of a pomegranatebalsamic glaze. It was delicious, and I up the next morning and realized there were not going to be any ill effects from eating all those mini-cucumbers. periment was to test the mini-cucumber salad on a larger cohort, more precisely, at a dinner party with ten guests. Chef Monica whipped up another great salad. This time it consisted of romaine hearts, almonds, pomegranate seeds, and Vidalia onion vinaigrette. The salad with the mini-cucumbers was a hit. I even took some to lunch the next day. I should admit here that Id been feeding this cute little vine to several orangutans and baboons at a famous park for a number of years. Theyd eat the entire vine, including the foliage, but they really preferred the fruit. When Id give them a very large handful of vine, theyd meticulously pick out and eat the With all the rain weve been getting recently, creeping cucumber has been plentiful, and so have other, similar vines. Be very careful when youre picking fruit to eat. The foliage for creeping cucumber is very distinctive, a bit coarse and with a not-unpleasant scent. Ive never grown it on purpose, knowing very sunny locations, but Im quite sure it can be grown in a container, in quantity, on a wire frame. It would make a great plant for a sunny and windy balcony or porch alongside your mini-tomatoes. In my travels to various local properties to inspect trees, Ive come across a few unusual species of vines with edible fruit, and Ill write about these in future garden columns. ipal arborist, director of horticulture at Jungle Island, and principal of Tropical Designs of Florida. Contact him at jeff@ tropicaldesigns.com. Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com BT photo by Jeff ShimonskiMelothria pendula

PAGE 72

72 Columnists: KIDS AND THE CITY Scout-a-rama Mama DramaWithout their fearless leader, this troop shinedBy Crystal Brewe BT ContributorLast Friday night, 13 Girl Scouts descended on my house with supplies for a 24-hour Scout-a-rama. The agenda was tight, but we were determined to pack it in. There was chore to build, hot dogs and smores to cook, songs and skits, and preparations for our front-yard pancake breakfast fundraiser the next morning, where we expected 50 parents, friends, and neighbors. Meet the Girl Scout leader: me. Every time I tell people Im the leader of my daughters troop, they giggle. I know, I know. Scouting. Youre thinking anti-gay undertones and religious overtones. Well, think of the Girl Scouts as the Boy Scouts smarter, more liberal sister. The mission of Girl Scouts is to build girls of courage, world a better place. I was a Girl Scout, and the most diverse and adventurous memories of my childhood came from the experience. My mother led my troop, and we took on the world. We marched in parades, went horseback riding, camped, took bowling lessons (I know, weird huh?), sold cookies, visited the zoo, visited nursing homes, visited the humane society, and once we even visited the dump. These memories are punctuated by badges sewn onto a vest that now sits in a closet, but what stuck with me was grew. At the time I thought, if I can earn a badge in all these things, I can rule the world! Did you know that 70 percent of the women serving in the U.S. Senate were Girl Scouts? That 80 percent of women business owners, 67 percent of the female members of the House of Representatives, and nearly all the female U.S. astronauts in space were Girl Scouts? I am no astronaut, but I am a working mom. My co-leader and I joke that the other moms think were Troop Beverly Hills, but in reality were the working-mom-run troop. These other troop leaders work hard on their troops. For many of them, its like a full-time girls earn gold and silver awards, take on monumental service projects, earn scholarships, go abroad on scouting trips, and get into college. My mom once told me the only reason she spent so much time on the scouting thing was to get the other girls to trust her. Seriously, it was like the long con of the century. Imagine: You spend years get ting little tykes to trust you so that at the age of 16 theyll sell your daughter up the river when you ask, Are those her ciga rettes? or Where was she at 5:00 a.m.? All right, admittedly this Girl Scout had a checkered past. While I dont think Ill need the long con, there is something appealing about getting to know the girls who are helping shape my daughters childhood. While Ive been at it, Ive met some pretty great Im able to address issues and decisions with them in a constructive and positive way. As the parent of a nine-year-old girl, I know that the countless eye rolls can eradicate the words constructive and positive from most situations. So back to the Scout-a-rama. We spent weeks planning a campout agenda, sat in disbelief that our South Florida girls were soundly sleeping outdoors in the tent in the 50-degree night air. At midnight my husband and I pitched our two-man tent right next to the girls tent and I fell asleep thinking about the last college spring break trip to Lake Havasu that the tent experienced. At 4:30 a.m., I awoke to cold sweats, fever, violent tremors, and six-foot swells ber after making it back to my bedroom is trying to yell, Refer to the lists and map in my briefcase! to my husband, who now realized hed have to put on a pancake breakfast fundraiser for 50 by himself. Guess what? My getting sick, while annoying to my hubby, was the best thing that could have happened to the girls. I have a faint memory around 7:00 a.m. of them passing by my bedroom window yelling, Heave-ho! while carrying a stack of chairs. They took control and worked together. They rolled their own sleeping bags, set up the tables, made the signs, griddled every one of our neighbors came out for the and troop parents pitched in without being asked, and this might be a rumor, but I even heard that one of our grumpier neighbors When 13 girls rally behind somedo anything. Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com Traditional Taekwon-Do Instruction NOW ACCEPTINGNEW STUDENTSAges 5-Adults, All levels of Experience. Free uniform and private introductory class with enrollment.786-493-409 5 9617 Park Drive Miami Shores, FL 33138786-493-4095Visit us online at www.chitkd.orgITF affiliated school with over 20 years instructional experience.

PAGE 73

Columnists: GOING GREENRaise a Glass to the River of GrassThe Everglades gives us some of the nations cleanest drinking waterBy Jim W. Harper BT ContributorThank you, Everglades. Thank you, limestone. Every time you drink a glass of water, take a moment to appreciate its origins. South Florida has some of the best water in the nation, and some of the worlds most productive aquifers. Its a miracle of nature that deserves more attention. A lot of people dont know where their water comes from, says Ren Price, a hydrogeologist and associate professor at Florida International University. They need to realize that the Everglades is the lifeblood of Miami. That water you drink from the tap? It pooled in the River of Grass and percolat ed through the limestone beneath it. Have you thanked your ecosystem today? If you look at other places within a simi lar latitude Baja California, Saudi Arabia, Libya youll wonder why Florida isnt a desert. These places, like Florida, have extensive shorelines, but theyre bone-dry. Many elements came together to create this unique peninsula with plentiful fresh water, the worlds most essential resource. The foundation comes from Africa. Eons ago, before the continents divided, Florida was wedged in between Africa and South America as part of the supercontinent Gondwana. It eventually drifted into North America. For most of history, sea level was much higher, and most of Florida was an oceanic ledge. Ancient marine organisms discarded or built their shells on the layer became compacted as the sediment feet. At more than 1000 feet deep, this layer holds the Floridan Aquifer, which runs throughout much of the state and serves much of northern Florida. In South Florida, however, the aquifer runs too deep and salty to be of much use. But we may need it in the future to abate salt water intrusion from sea level rise. Salt water has already ruined the freshwater supply of the City of Hallandale in Broward County, which must import its drinking water. Miami-Dade County was wise to place its supply wells far from the coastline and close to the Everglades. That investment, made a few decades ago, may have been Miamis smartest moment. Across South Florida, the main source of drinking water is the Biscayne Aquifer, less than 250 feet below ground. Above it sits an incredible system of small caves and porous limestone that allow rainwater to settle in a matter of minutes. The same is true of the oil that spills and into our supply of drinking water. You drink what you spill. (Well, not exactly, since it undergoes treatment, but who wants to start the process with dirty water?) As its name implies, the Biscayne Aquifer connects with the bay and the ocean. With less water pressure from above, owing to dry conditions or excessive usage, more saltwater seeps into the system from below. You can do your part to prevent saltwater intrusion by using water wisely. Always try to conserve water, says Price. We just ended a six-year drought in 2012. This six-year pattern, which follows the cycle of El Nio, suggests that the next six years should be relatively wetter. But such assumptions could be upended by climate change. To help us appreciate our source of water, Rice offers an experiment: Go and break it into pieces or scrape it. Then look closely. Do you see tiny chalky dots everywhere? Those compacted dots are called oolites (pronounced oh-uh-lights ). The spherical grains of calcium carbonate become exposed and solidify over time, and form oolitic limestone, the rocks in your backyard and under your building. While Miamis oolitic limestone formed ages ago, today a similar process is hap pening in the sand banks of the Bahamas. Many residents mistakenly call Miamis near-surface limestone coral rock, perhaps because its many pores resemble those of coral fossils. Local rock created primarily by coral skeletons is called Key Largo limestone. But most of the limestone below your feet comes not from coral, but from non-living oolites. Thank your lucky oolites today for Lastly, we must thank the Miami-Dade Water and Sewer Department for delivering a consistently good product. Our tap water is high in quality and low in price, despite what your neighbors might say. Google it. Tap water deserves your support but bottled water doesnt. Sitting inside a plastic shell for unknown amounts of time, bottled water creates waste that we can do without. Bottle your own tap water. Water is the ultimate renewable resource, and the Everglades watershed is one of the worlds greatest suppliers of clean, abundant fresh water. We should be grateful to be living near a swamp instead of a desert. Raise a glass (of water) to the River of Grass. Send your tips and clever ideas to: goinggreen@biscaynetimes.com. Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com Accounting and Income TaxStudents, Singles, or Married with W-2sTaxes for just$45*Promotion Expires 4/15/2014Taxes for just$115*Promotion Expires 4/15/2014Self-Employed Independent Contractors Freelancers INDIVIDUAL AND CORPORATE TAXES Bookkeeping Payroll Form New Corporations Notary PublicMiami Financial Center12573 Biscayne Blvd. N Miami, FL 33181786.329.995022 years in South Florida English & Russian spoken

PAGE 74

74 Columnists: VINO By Bill Citara BT ContributorSophistication, thy name is France. Or so it seems, anyway. The French practically invented haute couture; the most storied fashion houses Chanel, Dior, Louis Vitton, Herms are all French. In art and architecture, names like Czanne and Renoir, Monet and Gauguin, the Eiffel Tower and Versailles are worldrenowned. French women not only never gain weight, they possess an unerring style and ineffable beauty, while French men display a casual, effortless cool matched only by Bond, James Bond. Of course, French cuisine is the basis for virtually all modern cooking, and still sets the world standard. And even the most casual wine drinker knows the hallowed names of Latour, Haut-Brion, Margaux, Cheval Blanc, all organized in a rigid caste system that has endured for hundreds of years. But really, not everything French is that sophisticated. French cars are pieces of junk or junque if you prefer. French cigarettes smell like burning camel dung. French movies are torturously murky, intermi nable affairs, the cinematic equivalent of waterboarding. And while at its highest more typical French fare can be much less so. I once spent a week touring the tony chteaux of Bordeaux and was served more plain beef and potatoes than your average Iowa trucker consumes in a month. As for wine, even the most sophisticated Frenchman doesnt drink Latour and Haut-Brion every night. Thats what vins de pays are for. Literally, country wines, vins de pays are everyday wines, though the designation VDP is one step from ordinary table wines. There are a half-dozen Vin de Pays regions, by far the largest being Languedoc-Roussillon in southern France. So thats where Vino concentrated its attention, coming up with three whites and four reds to showcase the regions attributes. The big takeaway? Stick with the reds. All three whites were nothing Id want to see in a glass again. The 2011 Viognier des Acanthes and 2011 Marchal Sauvignon Blanc were both brownish, stinky, oxidized, and undrinkable. If you have a radiarecommended. Sadly, the non-vintage Jean-Claude Debeaune Cuve des Connoisseurs was only marginally better, with a faintly citrusy-soapy nose bucks less than this wines $10 price tag, you can do a lot better. On the other hand, our VDP reds were quite delightful, delivering a soupon of French savoir-faire at reasonable cost. If youre going to buy a cheap Merlot, look for a Fat Bastard. That would be Guy Anderson and Thierry Boudinauds Fat Bastard label, which graces bottles of simple but well-made and eminently drinkable wines, like the duos 2011 Merlot. Its rich, straightforward cherry-berry fruit is typical of inexpensive bottlings of this varietal, but its underlying currents of toasty oak, spice, and black olives add nuance to the mix, and its full body and big-mouth feel make it capable of standing up to everything from barbecue to hearty red-sauce pastas. Vino can never uncover enough affordable Pinot Noirs, and this tasting yielded a pair of good ones. Theres no vintage listed on the Lulu B but dont let that stop you. This product of Corsican vineyards (Vin de Pays de lle de Beaut) serves up lots of satisfaction and a surprising amount of varietal character for its $9 price tag. Theres a spicyearthy edge to its bright-red, cherry-raspberry fruit that distinguishes it from many bargain California Pinots, and its lighter-bodied too, so you can serve it with seafood, as well as chicken, pork, and veal. In much the same style is the 2012 Ropiteau Pinot Noir It is fruit-forward, a little grapey, a little earthy, with hints of olives and anise, and enough soft tannins and acidity to keep the ripe fruit under control. Like the Lulu B, its a But the real standout of the tasting was a blend of three classic grapes of southern France. The 2009 Domaine Magellan combines Grenache, Syrah, and Carignan for a big, robust wine (14.5 percent alcohol) whose tight structure supports layers of potent aromas of black n blue fruit, cloves and anise, oak and olives, all of which carry over to the palate. It really is pretty, you knowFrench. Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com Cheap but Rich French RedsRed, white, and you: Agreeable wine for $12 or less

PAGE 75

Columnists: DISHVegan Pizza, Batch Cocktails, and Stufng Your Face for Chinese New YearFood news we know you can use By Pamela Robin Brandt BT ContributorHappy Chinese New Year 2014! On January 31, the Year of the Horse began with a traditional animal name that is particularly appro priate since February is a month when Miamians traditionally eat like a horse. Thats particularly true this year. Our capitalF food event, the internationally renowned South Beach Wine & Food Fes tival, is being supplemented with an excit ing new community-oriented food fair, Palette Miami that showcases Biscayne Corridor restaurants as well celebrates local music, art, businesses, and more. in this issue (see Community News, page 40) because there have been too many recent restaurant openings in BT territory to take room here for cultural stuff. Dish after OPENINGS R House (2727 NW 2nd Ave., 305-5760201) In rapidly gentrifying Wynwood, something described as part restolounge/ part art gallery can make one suspect whizzing past appropriately arts-oriented realness to SoBe snooty pretension. But beautys not just skin-deep here; the art component is a genuine working gallery, with paintings for sale, etc. As for the res taurant part, the ultra-hands-on involvement of chef/owner Rocco Carulli is obvious. He seems to be everywhere at once, with an almost working-class/superhero ethic. Prices arent working-class, but theyre affordable. And most entres can be ordered in half portions. The fare itself is an eclectic New American mix, largely familiar (tuna tartare), sometimes unusual (sweet pea falafel), and all-around crowd-pleasing. Batch Gastropub (30 SW 12th St., 305-808-5555): Probably the most antici pated recent restaurant opening (owners Kevin Danilo and Jerry Flynn have been planning it for years, literally), Batch offers both draft beers and draft cocktails (pre pub grub. This means familiar, trendy, bar comfort foods dramatically upscaled by so phisticated chef-driven twists, and locally sourced, eco-conscious ingredients. Pittzza at Iron Side (7580 NE 4th Ct., 305-531-5055) Hidden within the green campus of Iron Side where industrial buildings have been transformed into a mixed-arts complex this striking space was formerly occupied by the Iron Side Caf. The cafs ambitious health/fresh ness-minded menu (from Metro Organic Bistros original chef, Nino Grullon) has been replaced by wood-oven pizzas and a pizza maestro from Naples (Italy, not Florida). But the fare, though simpler, is still scrumptious and health/freshnessminded; excepting tuna, all the toppings are either vegetarian or vegan (with dairyfree Daiya cheese substituted for mozz). House of V (7600 NE 4th Ct., 305323-1514) If Pittzzas cannoli dont do ya as dessert, the adjacent House of V, which began as a home-based bakery business that became a pop-up for Art Basel and then stayed on, offers Valentina Corderos vegan, gluten-free, organic sweets: cup cakes, cookies, brownies, and much more. BarMeli Miami (725 NE 79th St., 305754-5558) From Liza Meli, former owner of defunct Ouzos Greek Taverna, this new wine/Mediterranean tapas bar, just one block north and a couple of blocks east, doubles as a boutique wine store. The small plates selection, impressive in both size and quality, includes many of Ouzos Great est Hits: light and lemony taramosalata (carp roe dip); BBQ-grilled whole sardines, head-on prawns, or octopus. There are also by other Mediterranean countries; cheese entres; and desserts, including two lemon items, Mama Lucys cake and semolina/ lemon custard, bound to become legend. LOL RestoBar (801 Brickell Bay Dr., 786-615-8255) Tucked inside the Four Ambassadors Suites Hotel, this place is a stylish hidden hangout. Fare is mostly Argentinean (parrillada plates and other grilled meat-based items, empanadas) and Italian, as interpreted in Argentina (pasta with rose sauce, beef Milanese). A few American or Americanized items plonked here and there on the menu (a burger, a Hawaiian pineapple pizza) shake things up. CLOSING Sure seemed like it was Time for Wine (2200 NE 2nd Ave.), not of the half-pintin-a-brown-bag sort, when this this artfully rustic, remarkably wallet-friendly boutique wine shop/tapas bar brought tion of Wynwood less than a year ago. Alas. It was evidently ahead of its time. Hungry for more food news? See BizBuzz, page 16. Send me your tips and alerts: restaurants@biscaynetimes.com. Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com

PAGE 76

76 Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT S MIAMIBrickell / DowntownAijo1331 Brickell Bay Dr.,786-452-1637Hidden within Jade condo, this sleek Japanese fusion restolounge (whose name means love) is also a jewel. Food-loving Venezuelan owner Rene Buroz encourages innovation, and his chefs (including four from Zuma) respond with beautifully plated items as fun as they are flavorful. Dont miss the layered cro quante (a sort of Asian croqueta: mouthwatering crispy rice, subtly smoked salmon, and creamy crab), Aijo kani (king crab legs with citrus foam clouds and rich emulsified butter dip), or creative cocktails from a mixologist who also juggles and plays with fire. Area 31270 Biscayne Boulevard Way, 305-424-5234Not that the sleek interior of this seafood restaurant (named for fishing area 31, stretching from the Carolinas to South America) isnt a glamorous dining setting. But wed eat outside. From the expansive terrace of the Epic condo and hotel on the Miami River, the views of Brickells high-rises actually make Miami look like a real city. Its hard to decide whether the eats or drinks are the most impressive. The food is impeccably fresh regional fish, prepared in a clean Mediterranean-influenced style. The cocktails are genuinely creative. Luckily you dont have to choose one or the other. $$$-$$$$Atrio1395 Brickell Ave., 305-503-6529Admittedly, the Conrad Hotels top-end restaurant has had its ups and downs since its early days as one of the few exciting fine-dining restaurants in the Brickell/downtown area. But Atrio is ready for rediscovery. Despite Brickells recent restaurant explosion, few venues are as spectacularly suitable for a sophisticated breakfast, lunch, or dinner for grown-ups whod rather not shout over DJs. Panoramic views of Miami from the 25th floor are now matched by locally oriented dishes, including a mango/ lime mayo-dressed lobster sandwich, crisp-skinned snapper with grapefruit salsa and basil aioli, a bracing orange tart, even citrus butter in the bread basket. $$$-$$$$Balans901 S. Miami Ave., (Mary Brickell Village), 305-534-9191Open until 4:00 a.m. on weekends, this London import (Miamis second Balans) offers a sleeker setting than its perennially popular Lincoln Road progenitor, but the same simple yet sophisticated global menu. The indoor space can get mighty loud, but lounging on the dog-friendly outdoor terrace, over a rich croque monsieur (which comes with an alluringly sweet/sour citrusdressed side salad), a lobster club on onion toast, some surprisingly solid Asian fusion items, and a cocktail is one of Miamis more relaxing experiences. $$-$$$Bali Caf109 NE 2nd Ave., 305-358-5751While Indonesian food isnt easy to find in Miami, downtown has secret stashes small joints catering to cruise-ship and construction workers. This cute, exotically decorated caf has survived and thrived for good reason. The homey cooking is delicious, and the friendly family feel encourages even the timid of palate to try something new. Novices will want Indonesias signature rijsttafel, a mix-and-match collection of small dishes and condiments to be heaped on rice. Note: bring cash. No plastic accepted here. $-$$Banana & Leaf234 NE 3rd St., 786-431-5548Ever 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 youd rather, dishes on the larger custom menu arrive almost as fast. There is also limited, tasty Southeast Asian fare. Most unbelievable: Prices beat supermarket sushi by far. $Bar Urbano1001 S. Miami Ave., 305-381-5901Hot, hip, Hispanic is a huge understatement to describe the street-smart urban flair of this tropical restolounge. After about 9:00 p.m., droves of high-energy young partiers make the place seem more Latin singles bar than eatery. Nevertheless, the largely but not exclusively Colombian-inspired, Latin/Caribbean comfortfood cuisine can be inspiring. Were partial to snacks like the arepa Colombiana, heaped with fresh white cheese, and the sinful chivito sandwich (steak, ham, melted mozzarella, and a fried egg). But there are also full entres like a bandeja paisa (Colombias belly-busting mixed platter of proteins and carbs). $$-$$$Bento Sushi & Chinese801 Brickell Bay Dr., 305-603-8904Hidden 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 insiders 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-entres (the nigiri assortment sushi and lacy-battered tempura especially recommended). Bubble tea, too! $$-$$$ Biscayne Tavern146 Biscayne Blvd., 305-307-8300From restaurateur Jeffrey Chodorow, this contemporary tavern seems tailor-made for a newly urbanized neighborhood, inviting residents to hang from breakfast to late-night snack time, over updated comfort food thats globally inspired while adhering to the local/organic mantra. Among expected casual favorites (solid American burgers; Asianesque pork-belly sliders) highlights are items that chef Will Biscoe stamps with his own unique, unpre tentiously inventive touches, from small plates (housemade potato chips with blue cheese fondue) to large (a long-bone short rib chop with truffle popover; South Florida bouillabaisse). More than 30 craft beers accompany. $$-$$$ Blue Martini900 S. Miami Ave. #250, 305-981-2583With a 41-martini menu (plus exotic lighting, late hours, dance floor, and live music most nights), this wildly popular place is more lounge than restaurant. Nonetheless food offerings are surprisingly ambitious, including substantial items like sliced steak with horseradish sauce, as well as shareable light bites -parmesan-topped spinach/artichoke dip, served hot with toasted pita; shrimp and blue crab dip (yes: crab, not faux krab); a seductive puff pastry-wrapped and honey-drizzled baked brie. Come at happy hour (4:00-8:00 p.m. daily) for bargain drink/ snack specials, and lots of locals. $$ Bonding638 S. Miami Ave., 786-409-4794From trend-spotting restaurateur Bond Trisansi (originator of Mr. Yum and 2B Asian Bistro), this small spot draws a hip crowd with its affordable menu of redesigned traditional Thai dishes, wildly imaginative sushi makis, and unique signature Asian fusion small plates. Highlights include tastebud-tickling snapper carpaccio; an elegant nest of mee krob (sweet, crisp rice noodles); blessedly non-citrus-drenched tuna tataki, drizzled with spicysweet mayo and wasabi cream sauce; greed-inducing bags of gold, deep-fried wonton beggars purses with a shrimp/pork/ mushroom/waterchestnut filling and tamarind sauce. $$ Bon Fromage500 Brickell Ave. #106, 786-329-5632Though independently owned instead of a chain cog, this cheese and wine caf/shop is like a pint-size version of Midtown Miamis 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 dont miss more unusual domestic treasures like Wisconsin bread, a cooked cheese that, like halloumi, doesnt melt but tantalizingly softens when heated. $$ Brasileiro801 Brickell Bay Dr., 786-502-3829Fittingly, the indoor/outdoor bay-view space in the Four Ambassadors, occupied by Miamis first Brazilian rodizio restaurant back in the early 1980s, is now home to a 21st-century upgrade. For insatiable carnivores and fans of Latin Americas best dinner show, theres the traditional parade of tableside, sword-wielding gauchos carving all-you-can-eat meats, including must-not-miss medium-rare picanhas, delectably fat-capped sirloin. For more modern and/or light eaters, prepared dishes by Gully Booth, one of Miamis best-kept-secret chefs, include goat cheese croquettes, stuffed dates, and crab cakes Martha Stewart once proclaimed the best shed eaten. $$$$Brother Jimmys BBQ900 S. Miami Ave. #135, 786-360-3650The South is supposed to be the source of barbecue. But Bro J evidently didnt hear about that. His signature North Carolina pork cue comes from NYC, where the first Brother Jimmys opened more than 20 years ago. Miamis location is actually the first south of the Mason-Dixon line. But the slow-smoked pulled pork butt tastes righteous -no interfering glop, just hot sauce-spiked vinegar to balance the fab fattiness. Theres other cue, too, including big (not baby back) ribs, and respectable brisket. $$-$$$Bryan in the Kitchen104 NE 2nd Ave., 305-371-7777This quirky caf-markets chef/owner is a former smoothie-swilling model who is now into fresh whole foods, and though his eclectic green gourmet menu does uniformly reflect his dedication to ecological consciousness, it otherwise could only be described as intensely personal. Offerings are an odd but appealing saint/sinner mix, ranging from healthy pasta/grain salads and homemade-from-scratch snacks (beef jerky, granola) to unique cupcakes featuring not-too-sweet adult flavors and irresistible sticky buns. If we had to choose just one category, wed sin. But luckily, you can have it all. $-$$ Caf Bastille248 SE 1st St., 786-425-3575Breakfasting on a ham-egg-cheese crepe at this very Frenchfeeling -and tasting -caf is a most civilized way to start the day. Formerly breakfast and lunch only, the caf is now open for dinner, too. And while the 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 poivre make it possible to resist. $-$$$Ceviche Piano140 SE 1st Ave., 305-577-4414Owners Martin and Charo Villacorta, a married chef/pastry chef team, think of this eatery as a relocation (in the same downtown plaza) and reinvention of their former best kept secret spot Martini 28. Most dramatic changes: upscaled size, and with its glamorous white piano, upgraded elegance. The menu has also been altered to be less of a global wildcard. Focus is now strongly on Peruvian cuisine, including a shrimp/calamari-smothered fish fillet with aji amarillo cream sauce. But no worries, old fans. Some of the old favorite dishes remain. $$ Chophouse Miami300 S. Biscayne Blvd., 305-938-9000Formerly Mannys Steakhouse, Miamis Chophouse retains basically everything but the famed name (from the original Mannys in Minneapolis), and remains Miamis 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 cocktails that would fell a T-Rex. Not for the frail. $$$$$ Cipriani465 Brickell Ave., 786-329-4090Derived, like all Cipriani family restaurants worldwide, from legendary Harrys Bar in Venice (a favorite of Truman Capote, Hemingway, and other famous folks since 1931), this glamorous indoor/outdoor riverfront location in Icon has two absolutely must-not-miss menu items, both invented at Harrys and reproduced here to per fection: beef carpaccio (drizzled artfully with streaks of creamy-rich mustard vinaigrette, not mere olive oil) and the Bellini (a cocktail of prosecco, not champagne, and fresh white peach juice). Venetianstyle liver and onions could convert even liver-loathers. Finish with elegant vanilla meringue cake. $$$$$ Restaurant ListingsThe Biscayne Corridors most comprehensive restaurant guide. Total this month: 292.rf ntbnf nttnf tnt f f t tff nff ff NEW THIS MONTH MIAMIBRICKELL / DOWNTOWNBatch Gastropub30 SW 12th St., 305-808-5555The name refers to Batchs signature novelty items, which we think of as gourmet fast-food cocktails: high-quality fresh ingre dients (some barrel-aged), pre-mixed in batches and served on tap for instant gratification. But a menu designed by E. Michael Reidt (ex-Area 31), means solid foods are serious chef-driven pub grub: the Mac Attack, sophisticated mac n cheese featuring gnocchi and aged Gruyere; sinfully succulent burgers, substituting brisket for leaner beef; nachos upgraded with duck confit; wood-oven pizzas topped with unusual combinations like pumpkin plus shortrib; duck fat popcorn; housemade sodas. $$15th & Vine Kitchen485 Brickell Ave., 305-503-0373In the 15th floor space originally occupied by Eos, the Viceroys top-end restaurant now focuses its dcor on spectacular bay views (particularly from an outdoor garden/pool terrace). And the mostly small-plates menu of accessible internationally influenced New American fare is more Miami-appropriate, too. Especially recommended: Asian-inspired items like spicy ginger meatballs with sweet sambal chili sauce, or lump crab croquettes with sriracha, remoulade, and a frise/fennel salad. Favorites like flatbreads and sliders plus a classy setting make this a striking business-lunch option. $$$-$$$$ Havana 19571451 S. Miami Ave., 305-381-6651If you never had the chance to enjoy classic Cuban dishes in glam 1950s Havana (pre-He Who Must Not Be Named), you can now at this nostalgic restolounge. Eat your way through the day, from hefty four-egg/croqueta breakfasts to late-night mini pan con bistec bar bites, surrounded by old-school memorabilia, music, and mojitos. Admittedly, prices are higher than those at average Miami Cuban eateries. But daily spe cials, including Wednesdays especially tasty mojo-marinated chicken fricassee in sweet-savory criollo sauce, are a great value. And the time trip is priceless. $$-$$$MIDTOWN / WYNWOOD / DESIGN DISTRICTiSushi Caf3301 NE 1st Ave. #107, 305-548-8751Ever get tempted by supermarket sushi rolls, just because theyre there? Dont be. This quick-casual caf has a menu similar to that at sushi/Japanese small-plates, fast-food take-out joints (individual nigiri, makis, and party platters, plus small plates like edamame, seaweed, etc.) and comparable preparation speed, too, but with ingredient quality and freshness thats more upscale. Prices are actually considerably cheaper than those of market makis that might have been sitting around for days. Additionally, ambiance, though casual, is stylish enough for a date or dinner with friends. $$ UPPER EASTSIDEBig Fish620 NE 78th St., 305-373-1770Longtime locals who remember the uniquely Miamian ambiance of the first Big Fish, a beloved Miami River hole-in-the-wall restolounge, will want to visit this rebirth featuring an equally cool waterside setting on the Little River, plus an original owner and similar traditional Italian dishes. Our personal fave is spaghetti alla vongole veraci (with tiny true Venetian clams, hard to find today even in Venice), but youll know what you like on the familiar menu. Best seating: the expansive extensively (and expensively) rebuilt riverfront deck. $$$-$$$$ Via Verdi Cucina Rustica6900 Biscayne Blvd., 786-615-2870After years of critical acclaim cooking the cuisine of their native Piedmont at ultra-upscale Quattro, on Lincoln Road, twin brother chefs Nicola and Fabrizio Carro decided to work for themselves, hands-on renovating the former space of MiMo District pioneer Uva 69. Cuisine here is similarly authentic, with creative twists. But there are important differences: emphasis on local, rather than mostly imported, ingredients; inspiration from all Italian regions; and best, astonishing affordability. Housemade spinach/ricotta gnudi baked in an ocean of burrata is a delight, but its hard to go wrong here. $$-$$$

PAGE 77

Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT S

PAGE 78

78 Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT SThe Corner1035 N. Miami Ave., 305-961-7887With a Zuma alum in the kitchen, a Gigi alum crafting classic or creative cocktails, a warm pub feel, and hours extending from lunch to nearly breakfast the next morning, The Corner is transforming a desolate downtown corner into a neighborhood hangout. The nicely priced menu of sandwiches, salads, snacks, and sweets (the latter from Om Nom Noms cookie queen Anthea Ponsetti) ranges from 100-percent homemade ice cream sandwiches to the Crazy Madame, Frances elaborate Croque Madame (a bchamel sauce-topped grilled cheese/ham/fried egg sandwich) plus bacon and caramelized onion. $-$$ Crazy About You1155 Brickell Bay Dr. #101, 305-377-4442The owners, and budget-friendly formula, are the same here as at older Dolores, But You Can Call Me Lolita: Buy an entre (all under $20) from a sizable list of Mediterranean, Latin, American, or Asian-influenced choices (like Thai-marinated churrasco with crispy shoestring fries) and get an appetizer for free, including substantial stuff like a Chihuahua cheese casserole with chorizo and pesto. The difference: This place, housed in the former location of short-lived La Broche, has an even more upscale ambiance than Dolores -including a million-dollar water view. $$$ Cvi.che 105105 NE 3rd Ave., 305-577-3454Fusion 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 creations, such as tiradito a la crema de rocoto (sliced fish in citrus-spiked chili/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. $$ db Bistro Moderne255 Biscayne Blvd. Way, 305-421-8800Just two words, Daniel Boulud, should be enough for foodies craving creative French/American comfort food to run, not walk, to this restaurant. Downtowns db is indeed an absentee celeb chef outpost, but on-site kitchen wizard Matthieu Godard flawlessly executes dishes ranging from the original db Bistros signature foie gras/ short rib/black truffle-stuffed burger to local market-driven dishes. Especially strong are seafood preparations, whether sauced with a refined choron or lustily garnished with Provencal accompaniments like tender sea scallops with chickpea panisse. $$$-$$$$ D-Dog House50 SW 10th St., 305-381-7770While it has become increasingly common to find servers at upscale restaurants utilizing computerized POS (point of service) systems to take orders, this high-tech hole-in-the-wall trumps them by replacing servers -and in-house entertainment, too -with iPads that accept not just food orders and credit cards but music requests. You can web surf or game, too, while waiting for your choice of the house specialty: supersized hot dogs, most overloaded with internationally inspired toppings. To accompany, hand-cut fries are a must. And have a cocktail. Theres a full liquor bar. $-$$ Dolores, But You Can Call Me Lolita1000 S. Miami Ave., 305-403-3103From the stylish setting in Miamis historic Firehouse No. 4, one would expect a mighty pricy meal. But entres, 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. $$$Doraku900 S. Miami Ave., 305-373-4633Happy hour comes twice daily (after work and lunch) at this second location of a popular South Beach sushi, pan-Asian, small-plates restolounge, bringing discounted prices on treats like rock shrimp tempura with spicy aioli. Regular prices are reasonable, too, for seafood flown in daily, and makis displaying solid creativity rather than gimmickry. Especially enjoyable are items accented by Japanese ingredients rarely found in Americanized sushi bars, like the Geisha Rolls astringent shiso leaf, beautifully balancing spicy tuna, pickled radish, and rich eel sauce. A huge sake menu, too. $$-$$$Edge, Steak & Bar1435 Brickell Ave., 305-358-3535Replacing the Four Seasons formal fine dining spot Acqua, Edge offers a more kick-back casual welcoming vibe. And in its fare theres a particularly warm welcome for non-carnivores. Chef-driven seafood items (several inventive and unusually subtle ceviches and tartares; a layered construction of corvina encrusted in a jewel-bright green pesto crust, atop red piquillo sauce stripes and salad; lobster corn soup packed with sweet lobster meat; more) and a farm-to-table produce emphasis make this one steakhouse where those who dont eat beef have no beef. $$$$-$$$$$ Elwoods Gastro Pub188 NE 3rd Ave., 305-358-5222Cordial English owners, classic rock music (sometimes live), and updated classic pub fare make this hangout a home. Made from scratch with artisan ingredients, traditional Brit bites like fish and chips cant be beat -thick pieces of crisply beer-battered moist cod, served with hand-cut fries and mushy [mashed] peas, plus housemade tar tar sauce and ketchup. All desserts are also made in-house, including a deliriously rich (but worth it) sticky date pudding with toffee sauce. Tie down your dental implants. Theyre in for a wild ride. $$Fado Irish Pub900 S. Miami Ave. #200, 786-924-0972Unlike most Miami Irish pubs, which serve mostly American bar food, rarely foraying past fish and chips or shepherds 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. Theres a seasonal menu, too. $$The Filling Station & Garage Bar95 SE 2nd St., 786-425-1990This fun, locally oriented dive, opened in 1994, was hip more than a decade before downtown was. And its 2008 relocation to larger quarters, plus two subsequent expansions, signal that it has more than kept up with the explosion of newer neighborhood hotspots, without pretensions or yuppified prices. On the fresh, hefty hamburgers, true Miami weirdness is displayed in toppings like peanut butter or Nutella. Other standouts: tangyspicy Buffalo wings; homemade tater tots; the oil pan (fried pickles and onion rings with two sauces); and an ever-changing list of craft beers. $-$$ Fratelli Milano213 SE 1st St., 305-373-2300Downtown isnt yet a 24/7 urban center, but its experiencing a mini explosion of eateries open at night. That includes this family-owned ristorante, where even newcomers feel at home. At lunch its almost impossible to resist panini, served on foccacia or crunchy ciabatta; even the vegetarian version bursts with complex and complementary flavors. During weekday dinners, try generous plates of risotto with shrimp and grilled asparagus; homemade pastas like seafood-packed fettuccine al scoglio; or delicate Vitello alla Milanese on arugula. $$-$$$Garcias Seafood Grille and Fish Market398 NW N. River Dr., 305-375-0765Run by a fishing family for a couple of generations, this venerable Florida fish shack is the real thing. No worries about the seafoods freshness; on their way to the dining deck overlooking the Miami River, diners can view the retail fish market. Best preparations are the simplest. When stone crabs are in season, Garcias claws are as good as Joes but considerably cheaper. The local fish sandwich is most popular grouper, yellowtail snapper, or mahi mahi. $-$$Hibachi Grill45 NE 3rd Ave., 305-374-2223Imagine a mini-express Benihana. This place specializes in teppanyaki cuisine -minus the thrilling (or terrifying) tableside knife theatrics, true, but the one-plate meals of seasoned steak slices, chicken, shrimp, or salmon plus dipping sauces, fried rice, and an onion/zucchini mix come at bargain prices. There are also hefty soups or Japanese, Thai, and Singapore-style noodle and rice bowls loaded with veggies and choice of protein (including tofu). The limited sides are Japanese (shumai, plump chicken gyoza) and Chinese (various egg rolls). Fancy? No, but satisfying. $-$$ The Island Bistro605 Brickell Key Dr., 305-364-5512In the space that was formerly Fabiens, this bistro has nearidentical lunch and dinner menus of French-inspired food: Basquestyle shrimp pil pil, salmon with beurre blanc, steak au poivre. But theres now an espresso-rubbed steak, too, tie-in to an added Panther Coffee Bar serving pastries and other light bites from early morning. That, plus a new lounge with daily happy hours, makes the place feel less formal and more like a casual contemporary hangout. So do daily specials, including Thursdays Shells & Bubbles, a bargain seafood/champagne feast. $$-$$$Il Gabbiano335 S. Biscayne Blvd., 305-373-0063Its location at the mouth of the Miami River makes this ultraupscale 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 thats a trademark of Manhattans Il Mulino, originally run by Il Gabbianos owners. The rest of the food? Pricy, but portions are mammoth. And the champagne-cream-sauced housemade ravioli with black truffles? Worth every penny. $$$$$Jamon Iberico Pata Negra Restaurant 10 SW South River Dr., 305-324-1111From the outside, you know youre walking into the ground floor of a new condo building. But once inside the charmingly rustic room, youd swear youre in Spain. Obviously Spains famous cured hams are a specialty, as are other pork products on the weekly changing menu, from a roast suckling pig entre to a fried chorizo and chickpea tapa. But seafood is also terrific. Dont miss bacalao-filled piquillo peppers, or two of Miamis best rice dishes: seafood paella and arroz negro (with squid and its ink). $$-$$$Largo Bar & Grill401 Biscayne Blvd., 305-374-9706Sure, Bayside Marketplace is touristy. But it can be fun to spend a day playing visitor in your own city. If you do, this waterfront place overlooking Miamarina is a superior food choice. Expect nothing cutting edge, just tasty, familiar favorites solidly prepared. You wont go wrong with stone crab claws and Cajun mustard dip; inauthentic but delicious fish tacos in hard blue corn tortillas with two sauces (cilantro and chipotle), generously portioned fish sandwiches (grouper, mahi, snapper, or daily catch), and festive cocktails. $$-$$$ La Loggia Ristorante and Lounge68 W. Flagler St., 305-373-4800This luxuriantly neo-classical yet warm Italian restaurant was unquestionably a pioneer in revitalizing downtown. With alternatives like amaretto-tinged pumpkin agnolloti in sage butter sauce and cilantro-spiced white bean/vegetable salad dressed with truffle oil, proprietors Jennifer Porciello and Horatio Oliveira continue to draw a lunch crowd that returns for dinner, or perhaps just stays on through the afternoon, fueled by the Lawyers Liquid Lunch, a vodka martini spiked with sweetened espresso. $$$La Moon 144 SW 8th St., 305-860-6209At 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 places late hours (till 6:00 a.m. Friday and Saturday) are surprising, the daytime menu is more so. In addition to Colombian classics, theres a salad Nicoise with grilled fresh tuna, seared salmon with mango salsa, and other yuppie favorites. $-$$ La Provence1064 Brickell Ave. 786-425-9003Great baguettes in the bread basket, many believe, indicate a great meal to come. But when Miamians encounter such bread -crackling crust outside; moist, aromatic, aerated interior -its likely not from a restaurants own kitchen, but from La Provence. Buttery croissants and party-perfect pastries are legend too. Not so familiar is the bakerys caf component, whose sandwich/salad menu reflects local eclectic tastes. But French items like pan bagnats (essentially salade Nioise on artisan bread) will truly transport diners to co-owner David Thaus Provenal homeland. $$La Sandwicherie34 SW 8th St., 305-374-9852This second location of the open-air diner that is South Beachs favorite aprs-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 charcute rie and cheeses (saucisson sec, country pt, camembert, etc.) and choice of salad veggies plus salty/tart cornichons and Sandwicheries incomparable Dijon mustard vinaigrette. Additionally the larger branch has an interior, with a kitchen enabling hot foods (quiches and croques), plus A/C. $-$$LEntrecote de Paris1053 SE 1st Ave., 305-755-9995If menu choices makes you nuts, this place, originally a Parisian eatery with locations in Brazil, is the restaurant for you. Theres only one prix fixe meal offered: an entrecote steak with a famed creamy sauce of 21 ingredients (here, predominantly curry), accompanied by a walnut-garnished mixed greens/tomato salad and shoestring frites, plus a crunchy-crusted baguette. Your only choice is how you like your steak precision-cooked. la carte desserts are indeed extensive; avoid stress by choosing a macaron flight of mixed flavors. $$$Lime Fresh Mexican Grill1 W. Flagler St., 305-789-9929Like its Midtown and North Miami Beach siblings, this Lime Fresh serves up carefully crafted Tex-Mex food. The concept is fast casual rather than fast food meaning nice enough for a night out. It also means ingredients are always fresh. Seafood tacos are about as exotic as the menu gets, but the mahi mahi for fish tacos comes from a local supplier, and salsas are housemade daily. Niceties include low-carb tortillas and many Mexican beers. $Lippi600 Brickell Ave., 305-579-1888Named after a 15th-century Italian painter, Lippi does have artful dcor and plating, but otherwise the moniker is mislead ing. The food is neither Italian nor, as some descriptions claim, Mediterranean-inspired. Its Philippe food -an extensive menu of mostly shareable small plates (a concept Philippe Ruiz pioneered at Palme dOr in the 1990s), inspired mainly by the chefs classic French technique and geographically limitless imagination. Standouts: weakfish ceviche with corn panna cotta and purple potato foam; lobster ravioli in aerated coriander-scented bisque. Everything is beautifully balanced and refined. $$$$-$$$$$Lunch American Style221 NW 1st Ave., 305-379-1991 Tasting the country, one place at a time is this lunchrooms motto. Wed recommend bringing friends for a tour of many regions favorite foods, most creatively interpreted. Theyre also crafted with homemade ingredients ranging from fresh-baked breads to the house-smoked pastrami on a Big Apple sandwich. The Nawlins poboy (featuring crispy-fried shrimp and horseradish remoulade) is also highly recommended. Try to make room for Iowa fritters (mouthwatering fried corn puffs with remoulade dip), too. To accompany: changing craft beers. $-$$ Machiya3252 NE 1st Ave. #116, 786-507-5025Originally called Machiya Ramen Noodle House, this eaterychanged its name -and really, the place is not so much a ramen joint as a contemporary izakaya (lounge featuring Japanese hot and cold small plates plus sushi), with a few added ramen bowls. Most of the menu is a mix of todays popular favorites, like Kobe sliders, and unique inventions. Wildest: wasabi-spiced tuna pizza. Our faves: fatty salmon makis (lightly seared salmon belly with shrimp tempura, asparagus, and yuzu sauce); rich miso-braised short ribs; steam buns with rock shrimp and spicy aioli.Medialunas Calentitas919 Brickell Ave., 305-517-3303At this first U.S. location of a Uruguayan chain, the signature specialtys crescent-like shape says croissant. But medialunas dont have croissants puff-pastry flakiness; theyre more substantial buttery breakfast rolls. And either simply syrup-glazed or stuffed (with ham and cheese, dulce de leche, more), they make a terrific Latin comfort-food breakfast or snack on the run. The same is true for equally bargain-priced empanadas (three varieties with distinctive fillings from Uruguay, Argentina, or Mexico) and tiny but tasty migas sandwiches like the elaborate Olympic: ham, cheese, lettuce, tomato, peppers, eggs, olives. $Miami Art Caf364 SE 1st St., 305-374-5117For businessfolk on the go, this breakfast/lunch-only French caf serves up evocative baguette sandwiches (like camembert) loaded, if you like, with greens, olives, and more. For those with time to sit, wed recommend the savory crpes, garnished with perfectly dressed salad, or sweet crpe like the Bonne Maman (whose sugar/salted butter stuffing brings Brittany to downtown). And quiches are nicely custardy. But there are surprises here, too, including just a few full entres, with correctly made traditional sauces one wouldnt expect at a luncheonette -except, perhaps, in Paris. $-$$Miamis Finest Caribbean Restaurant236 NE 1st Ave., 305-381-9254Originally from Jamaica, proprietor Miss Pat has been serving her traditional homemade island specialties to downtown office workers and college students since the early 1990s. Most popu lar item here might be the weekday lunch special of jerk chicken with festival (sweet-fried cornmeal bread patties), but even vege tarians are well served with dishes like a tofu, carrot, and chayote curry. All entres come with rice and peas, fried plantains, and salad, so no one leaves hungry. $Mint Leaf1063 SE 1st Ave., 305-358-5050Part of Londons famous Woodlands Group, this stylish spot, like its Coral Gables parent, serves the sort of upscale Indian food rarely found outside Great Britain or India. More interestingly, the menu includes not just the familiar northern Indian Mughlai fare served in most of Americas Indian restaurants, but refined versions of south Indias scrum ptious street food. Weve happily assembled whole meals of the vegetarian chaat (snacks) alone. And dosai (lacy rice/lentil crepes rolled around fillings ranging from traditional onion/potato to lamb masala or spicy chicken) are so addictive they oughta be illegal. $$$-$$$$Miss Yip Chinese Caf900 Biscayne Blvd., 305-358-0088Fans of the South Beach original will find the dcor different. Most notably, theres an outdoor lounge, and more generally a nightclub atmosphere. But the menu of Hong Kong-style Chinese food, prepared by imported Chinese cooks, is familiar. Simple yet sophisticated Cantonese seafood dishes rock (try the lightly battered salt-and-pepper shrimp), as does orange peel chicken, spicy/ tangy rather than overly sweet. And a single two-course Peking duck (skin in crepes, stir-fried meat and veggies with lettuce cups) makes mouthwatering finger food, shared among friends. $-$$$ Momi Ramen5 SW 11th St., 786-391-2392Banish all thoughts of packaged instant ramen. Perfectionist chef/owner Jeffrey Chen (who cooked for more than a decade in Japan), changes his mostly ramen-only menu often, but constants are irresistibly chewy handmade noodles; soups based on creamy, intensely porky tonkotsu broth (made from marrow bones simmered all day); meats like pork belly and oxtail; and authentic toppings including marinated soft-cooked eggs, pickled greens, more. Other pluses: Its open 24/7, and the ramen ranks with the USAs best. Minuses: Its cash only, and the ramen might be the USAs most expensive. $$$MPP Brickell141 SW 7th St., 305-400-4610Tasty Peruvian eateries arent rare in Miami. Peruvian fine-dining restaurants are. In the tastefully toned-down but still glam space fo rmerly housing And, this second location of Limas popular Mi Propriedad Privada specializes in familiar flavors presented with seriously upscaled preparations, plating, and prices. But many ceviches, tiraditos, and starters (like especially artful layered/ molded mashed potato/seafood causas, or clever panko-breade d fusion causa makis) come in trios for taste-testing. And ceviche lovers score on Tuesdays, when all-you-can-eat costs the same as a trio. $$$-$$$$$ My Ceviche1250 S. Miami Ave., 305-960-7825When three-time James Beard Rising Star Chef nominee Sam Gorenstein opened the original My Ceviche in SoBe, in 2012, it garnered national media attention despite being a tiny take-away joint. Arguably, our newer indoor/outdoor Brickell location is better. Same menu, featuring local fish prepared onsite, and superb sauces including a kicky roasted jalapeo/lime mayo), but this time with seats! What to eat? Ceviches, natch. But grilled or raw fish/seafood tacos and burritos, in fresh tortillas, might be even more tempting. Pristine stone-crab claws from co-owner Roger Duartes George Stone Crab add to the choices. $$Naoe661 Brickell Key Dr., 305-947-6263Chances are youve never had anything like the $85 prix-fixe Japanese dinners at chef Kevin Corys tiny but nationally acclaimed oasis, transplanted from its original Sunny Isles space with its supreme serenity intact. By reservation only, in two dinner seatings of just eight people each, and omakase (chefs choice) only, meals include a seasonal soup, a four-course bento box, eight pieces of sushi, and three desserts. Cory personally does everything for you, even applying the perfect amount of housemade artisan soy sauce mix and fresh-grated wasabi to each mind-reelingly fresh nigiri. Few eating experiences on earth are more luxuriant. $$$$$ neMesis Urban Bistro1035 N. Miami Ave., 305-415-9911Truly original restaurants are hard to find here, and harder to describe in standard sound bites. But they often are the attention-grabbing peo ple-magnets that spark revivals of iffy neighborhoods. Thats our prediction for this quirkily decorated bistro, where the kitchen is helmed by Top Chef contestant Micah Edelstein. The intensely personal menu of creative dishes inspired by her global travels (plus her fascination with unfamiliar ingredients) changes constantly, but scrumptious signatures include South African smoked veal bobotie, and Peruvian pinoli pancakes with housemade chicken/apple sausage, hibiscus syrup, and maple granules. $$$-$$$$Novecento1414 Brickell Ave., 305-403-0900For those who think Argentine cuisine is a synonym for beef and more beef, this popular eaterys wide range of more cosmo politan contemporary Argentine fare will be a revelation. Classic parrilla-grilled steaks are here for traditionalists, but the menu is dominated by creative Nuevo Latino items like a new-style ceviche de chernia (lightly lime-marinated grouper with jalapeos, basil, and the refreshing sweet counterpoint of watermelon), or crab ravioli with creamy saffron sauce. Especially notable are the entre salads. $$-$$$

PAGE 79

Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT S rfn 305-947-0064ttbr b www.yakko-san.comb bAuthentic Japanese Cuisine Full Bar Sushi Express bnf rrrrbbrnn tftnbrbr nrrrb

PAGE 80

Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT SOceanaire Seafood Room900 S. Miami Ave., 305-372-8862With 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 bars cold-water oysters) are ultra-fresh. $$$$OTC1250 S. Miami Ave. 305-374-4612Over-the-counter service usually connotes the classic fast food slider experience: both greaseburgers and patrons are in and out quickly. At this casually cool gastropub, the counter ordering system encourages the opposite feel, of comfie congeniality; it invites hanging out, just without the fuss of formal dining out -or the expense. Most plates are $10 or under. Ingredient-driven dishes cover todays favorite food groups (various mac-and-cheeses, variously topped/seasoned fries, and more) with some unusual twists, like a scrumptiously lardon-laden frise/goat cheese salad brightened by fresh peaches. Even the condiments are housemade. $$Ozzi Sushi200 SE 1st St., 786-704-8003Since 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, nigiri, 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. $-$$Pashas1414 Brickell Ave., 305-416-5116The original branch on Lincoln Road was instantly popular, and the same healthy Middle Eastern fast food is served at several newer outlets. The prices are low enough that you might suspect Pashas was a tax write-off rather than a Harvard Business School project, which it was by founders Antonio Ellek and Nicolas Cortes. Dishes range from falafel and gyros to more unusual items like muhammara (tangy walnut spread) and silky labneh yogurt cheese. Everything from pitas to lemonade is made fresh, from scratch, daily. $-$$Pega Grill15 E. Flagler St., 305-808-6666From Thanasios Barlos, a Greek native who formerly owned North Beachs 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 pita 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. $$ Perfecto Gastro1450 Brickell Ave., 305-372-0620This transplant from Barcelona features dcor that mixes rustic and urban, plus modern music and traditional tapas (the Spanish, not global, kind). Must-have: imported 5J jamon Iberico de Bellota from acorn-fed pata negra pigs -lusciously marbled, tender yet toothsome, the ultimate in cured hams. But other tapas like the salmorejo en vaso (a creamy, pumped Andalusian variation on gazpacho), papatas bravas (crisp-fried potatoes with spicy aioli), fuet (Catalan salami, similar to French saucisson sec), and crispy prawns are pretty perfecto, too. $$-$$$$ Perricones15 SE 10th St., 305-374-9449Housed in a Revolutionary-era barn (moved from Vermont), this market/caf was one of the Brickell areas first gentrified amenities. At lunch chicken salad is a favorite; dinners strong suit is the pasta list, ranging from Grandma Jennies old-fashioned lasagna to chichi fiocchi purses filled with fresh pear and gorgonzola. And Sundays $15.95 brunch buffet ($9.95 for kids) featuring an omelet station, waffles, smoked salmon and bagels, salads, and more remains one of our towns most civilized all-you-can-eat deals. $$Pieducks1451 S. Miami Ave., 305-808-7888If you can overlook a name as unenlightening as most in-jokes (it evidently refers to a favorite character of owner Claudio Nuness kids -we assume the Pokemon Psyduck), youll experience pretty perfect pizza. Sadly, not all brick ovens turn out perfectly charblistered crusts, crisp outside and airy/chewy inside, but thats what youll consistently find here and a newer take-out/deliveryonly Midtown branch. And unlike many artisan pizzerias, Pieducks doesnt get cheesy with cheese quantity (though we like that extra cheese is an option). Elaborate salads complete the menu. $$Pizzarium69 E. Flagler St., 305-381-6025Roman-style rectangular pizzas, served in square slices, have been available in the Miami area since the mid-1990s. But the familiar squares and Pizzariums are similar only in shape. Main difference: dough, here allowed to rise for four days. The resulting crusts are astonishingly airy, as authentic Roman slices, intended as light street snacks, should be. Toppings, a rotating selection of nearly 30 combinations, are highlighted by quality imported ingredients -not to mention a healthy imagination, as the zucca gialla attests: pumpkin cream, pancetta, smoked scamorza cheese. $ Porketta43 NE 3rd Ave., 305-372-0034Warm, juicy, served with succulent pieces of crisp crackling, herbstuffed Italian porchetta (pronounced porketta) roast, at its best, is hard to find even in much of Italy except during festivals. But every day is a festival here, where the real thing (not the dry deli-style pork roll slices that often pass for porchetta) is featured on a plate with broccoli rabe and cannellinis; in the hefty Bombardino sandwich; or in three mini-sandwiches, convenient for sampling the places three sauces. Several salads and carpaccios placate porkophobes. $-$$PreludeAdrienne Arsht Center 1300 Biscayne Blvd., 305-949-6722Though the opening of Barton G.s elegant performing arts center eatery did feature a live giraffe, the foods actually more grown-up than at his original SoBe spot. The concept is prix fixe: Any three courses on the menu (meaning three entres 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 crme fraiche ice cream pop. $$$$Rajas Indian Cuisine33 NE 2nd Ave., 305-539-9551Despite its small size and dcor best described as none, this place is an institution thanks to south Indian specialties rarely found in Miamis basically north Indian restaurants. The steamtabled curries are fine (and nicely priced), but be sure to try the custom-made dosai (lacy rice crepes with a variety of savory fillings) and uttapam, thicker pancakes, layered with onions and chilis, both served with sambar and chutney. $$The River Oyster Bar650 S. Miami Ave., 305-530-1915This 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 remoulade. There are even a few dishes to please meat-and-potatoes diners, like short ribs with macaroni and cheese. But oyster fans will find it difficult to resist stuffing themselves silly on the unusually large selection, especially since oysters are served both raw and cooked fireroasted with sofrito butter, chorizo, and manchego. Theres also a thoughtful wine list and numerous artisan beers on tap. $$$Rosa Mexicano900 S. Miami Ave., 786-425-1001 www.rosamexicano.comThis expansive indoor/outdoor space offers a dining experience thats haute in everything but price. Few entres top $20. The dcor is both date-worthy and family-friendly -festive but not kitschy. And nonsophisticates neednt fear; there is nothing scary about zarape de pato (roast duck between freshly made, soft corn tortillas, topped with yellow-and-habanero-pepper cream sauce), or Rosas signature guacamole en molcajete, made table side. A few pomegranate margaritas ensure no worries. $$$Soya & Pomodoro120 NE 1st St., 305-381-9511Life is complicated. Food should be simple. Thats owner Armando Alfanos philosophy, which is stated above the entry to his atmospheric downtown eatery. And since its also the formula for the truest traditional Italian food (Alfano hails from Pompeii), its fitting that the menu is dominated by authentically straightforward yet sophisticated Italian entres. 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. $-$$Sparkys Roadside Restaurant & Bar204 NE 1st St., 305-377-2877This cowboy-cute eaterys chefs/owners (one CIA-trained, both BBQ fanatics nicknamed Sparky) eschew regional purism, instead utilizing a hickory/apple-wood-stoked rotisserie smoker to turn out their personalized style of slow-cooked, complexly dry-rub fusion: ribs, chopped pork, brisket, and chicken. Diners can customize their orders with mix-and-match housemade sauces: sweet/tangy tomato-based, Carolinas-inspired vinegar/mustard, pan-Asian hoisin with lemongrass and ginger, tropical guava/habanero. Authenticity aside, the quality of the food is as good as much higher-priced barbecue outfits. $-$$ Stanzione 8787 SW 8th St., 305-606-7370 Though Neopolitan-style pizza isnt the rarity it was here a decade ago, this is Miamis only pizzeria certified authentic by Italys Associazione Verace Pizza Napoletana. This means following stringent rules regarding oven (wood-fired), baking time (90 seconds maximum, here closer to 50), tomatoes (imported San Marzano), olive oil (extra-virgin), even flour (tipo 00, for bubblylight crusts). Toppings do exceed the three original choices served in 19th-century Naples, but pies like the Limone (fresh mozzarella, pecorino, lemons, arugula, EVOO) prove some rules should be broken. $$Sumi Yakitori21 SW 11th St., 786-360-5570If your definition of yakitori has been formed from typical Americanized sticky-sweet skewers, this late-night places grilled offerings, flavored with the subtly smoky savor of imported Japanese binchotan charcoal will be a revelation. Dcor is more stunningly stylish than at chef/owner Jeffrey Chans adjacent Momi Ramen, but cooking is equally authentic for items like skewered duck (served with scallion sauce), juicy sausage-stuffed chicken wings, bacon-wrapped hardboiled quail eggs, or grilled hamachi kama (super succulent yellowtail collar). Supplemental dishes, including pork buns and sauted veggies, also excel. $$$ Sushi Maki1000 S. Miami Ave., 305-415-9779Fans of the popular parent Sushi Maki in the Gables will find many familiar favorites on this Brickell branchs menu. But the must-haves are some inventive new dishes introduced to honor the eaterys tenth anniversary and Miami multiculturalism: sushi tacos (fried gyoza skins with fusion fillings like raw salmon, miso, chili-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. $$-$$$ SuViche49 SW 11th St., 305-960-7097 This small Japanese-Peruvian place serves food influenced by each nation distinctly, plus intriguing fusion items with added Caribbean touches. Cooked entres, all Peruvian, include an elegant aji de gallina (walnut-garnished chicken and potatoes in peppery cream sauce). But the emphasis is on contemporary ceviches/tiraditos (those with velvety aji amarillo chili 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 Perus traditional potato garnish, huancaina cheese sauce? $$Temaris1250 S. Miami Ave., 305-836-2747In Japan, temaris are ornamented hand balls, used since the Seventh Century for sport and as good luck folk-art objects. At this Japanese/Latin hot spot, temaris are reinterpreted, both playfully and artfully, as beautiful, bite-size sushi balls (each about half the size of normal nigiri): vinegary rice topped with sliced raw fish or beef, plus nipples constructed from several of the eaterys dozen-and-ahalf sauces. Fancier mini-balls feature fusion combinations like spicy tuna, almonds, and tobiko, or substitute crispy rice. Normal-size makis, small plates, and desserts are also fun. $$-$$$Tobacco Road626 S. Miami Ave., 305-374-1198Prohibition-era speakeasy (reputedly a fave of Al Capone), gay bar, strip club. Previously all these, this gritty spot has been best known since 1982 as a venue for live music, primarily blues. But it also offers food from lunchtime to late night (on weekends till 4:00 a.m.). The kitchen is especially known for its chili, budgetpriced steaks, and burgers. Theres also surprisingly elegant fare, though, like a Norwegian salmon club with lemon aioli. A meatsmoker in back turns out tasty ribs. $$Top Burger109 NE 1st St., 305-379-3100Inside this better burger spot, dcor is so charmingly 1950s retro you almost expect to find the Fonz leaning on a jukebox. What you actually find: hand-formed, hormone-free, 100% Angus patties (or alternatives like veggie burgers, a lightly-breaded chicken Milanesa, and all-beef hot dogs) on toasted buns, with fresh-cut French or sweet potato fries. Welcome surprises include an assertively spicy/tangy BBQ-like secret sauce; prices that, while not 1950s level, rival those at junkfood joints; and oldschool service -the kind that comes with a smile. $ Toro Toro100 Chopin Plaza, 305-372-4710Back before Miamis business district had any there there, the InterContinentals original restaurant was an executive lunch/ dinner destination mainly by default. This replacement, from restaurant empire-builder Richard Sandoval, brings downtown power dining into this decade. As the name suggests, you can go bullish with steakhouse fare, including an abbreviated (in variety, not quantity) rodizio experience. But the places strongest suit is its pan-Latin small plates -upscaled refinements of classic favorites: crisp corn arepas with short rib, guacamole, and crema fresca; fluffier cachapas pancakes with tomato jam; more. $$$-$$$$$ Trapiche Room1109 Brickell Ave., 305-329-3656With multiple Marriott hotels in Brickell and downtown, one of them housing high-profile db Bistro, its not surprising that this small, second-floor restaurant is something of a best kept secret. But it deserves discovery. Chef Maria Tobar hasnt Daniel Bouluds fame, but she does have classic European-type technical skills, combined with contemporary creativity that turns even ultimately old-fashioned items, like a pork/cabbage strudel, into 21st century fine-dining fare. Both dcor and service, similarly, are swelegant, not stuffy, and the rooms intimacy makes it a romantic spot for special occasions. $$$$Tre Italian Bistro270 E. Flagler St., 305-373-3303Bistro actually sounds too Old World for this cool hangout, from the owners of downtown old-timer La Loggia, but restolounge sounds too glitzy. Think of it as a neighborhood bistrolounge. The food is mostly modernized Italian, with Latin and Asian accents: a prosciutto-and-fig pizza with Brazilian catupiry cheese; gnocchi served either as finger food (fried, with calamata olive/truffle aioli), or plated with orange-ginger sauce. But there are tomato-sauced meatballs with rigawt for Grandpa Vinnie, too. $$-$$$Trulucks Seafood, Steak, and Crabhouse777 Brickell Ave., 305-579-0035Compared to other restaurants with such an upscale powerlunch/dinner setting, most prices are quite affordable here, espe cially if you stick to the Miami Spice-priced date-dinner menu, or happy hour, when seafood items like crab-cake sliders are half price. Most impressive, though, are seasonal stone crabs (from Trulucks own fisheries, and way less expensive than Joes) and other seafood that, during several visits, never tasted less than impeccably fresh, plus that greatest of Miami restaurant rarities: informed and gracious service. $$$-$$$$Tuyo415 NE 2nd St., 305-237-3200Atop the revolutionary Miami Culinary Institute, this upscale eatery, unlike the caf downstairs, isnt student-run. Rather its designed to showcase school ideals -including sustainability as well as definitive Miami cuisine. The changing menu, from a culinary Dream Team headed by New World Cuisine inventor/MCI instructor Norman Van Aken (plus former protgs Jeffrey Brana and Travis Starwalt), mixes citrus-inflected creamy conch chowder and other pioneering signatures with new inventions like mind-reelingly multidimensional oyster pan stew, or tartare of tuna and burstingly ripe tomato topped with a delicate sous vide egg. $$$$$Verde Restaurant & Bar1103 Biscayne Blvd., 305-375-8282Located in the Prez Art Museum Miami, this indoor/outdoor bayfront bistro, a project of restaurateur Stephen Starr, serves elegant, eco-friendly fare to match PAMMs green certification. (Museum admission not required.) Seafood crudos shine: hamachi sashimi slices flash-marinated in a subtle citrus/ponzu emulsion and enlivened by jalapeo relish; a sprout-topped, smoothly sauced tuna tartare with lemon and horseradish flavors substituting for clichd sesame. Light pizzas topped with near paper-thin zucchini slices, goat cheese, roasted garlic EVOO, and squash blossoms virtually define farm-to-table. And doughnuts with Cuban coffee dip are the definitively local dessert. $$-$$$Wolfgangs Steakhouse315 S. Biscayne Blvd., 305-487-7130Proprietor Wolfgang Zweiner worked for decades at Brooklyns legendary Peter Lugers before opening the first of his own much-praised, old-school steakhouses in 2003, which explains the quality of the USDA prime-grade steaks here -dry-aged on premises for bold, beefy flavor and tender but toothsome texture. Prices are prodigious but so are portions. The 32-ounce porter house for two easily feeds three or four folks curious to taste the difference. Plentiful sides include a bacon starter favored by those who love Canadian bacon over pork belly. Personally, just the simple, superb steaks leave us happy as clams. $$$$$Wok Town119 SE 1st Ave., 305-371-9993Judging from the takeout window, the minimalist dcor (with communal seating), and predominance of American veggies on the menu, this Asian fast-food eatery, owned by Shai Ben-Ami (a Miss Yip and Domo Japones veteran) May initially seem akin to those airport Oriental steam tables. Wrong. Custom-cooked by Chinese chefs, starters (like soy/garlic-coated edamame), salads, and have-it-your-way stir-fries, fried rice, or noodle bowls burst with bold, fresh flavor. The proof: a startlingly savory miso beef salad, with sesame/ginger/scallion dressing. Bubble tea, too! $$ Zuma270 Biscayne Blvd. Way, 305-577-0277This Miami River restolounge has a London parent on San Pellegrinos list of the worlds 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 voluminous menu, which offers ample temptations for vegetarians as well as carnivores. Our favorite is the melt-inyour-mouth pork belly with yuzu/mustard miso dip, but even the exquisitely-garnished tofu rocks. $$$$Midtown / Wynwood / Design District3 Chefs Chinese Restaurant1800 Biscayne Blvd. #105, 305-373-2688Until this eatery opened in late 2010, the solid Chinese restau rants in this neighborhood could be counted on the fingers of no hands. So its not surprising that most people concentrate on Chinese and Chinese/American fare. The real surprise is the remarkably tasty, budget-priced, Vietnamese fare. Try pho, 12 varieties of full-flavored beef/rice noodle soup (including our favorite, with well-done flank steak and flash-cooked eye round). All can be customized with sprouts and fresh herbs. Also impressive: Noodle combination plates with sauted meats, salad, and spring rolls. $$ B Sweet20 NE 41st St., 305-918-4453At this homey neighborhood jewel, located in a former apartment building, husband/wife team Tom Worhach and Karina Gimenez serve up warm welcomes and playfully inventive breakfast, lunch, and snack fare: bacon-wrapped egg and cheese cups; pressed Philly steak panini; an elegant yuzu-dressed smoked salmon, grapefruit, avocado, and arugula salad. But the must-eats are sweets, housemade by Worhach, formerly executive pastry chef at the Mansion at Turtle Creek and similar gourmet palaces. One bite of his decadent yet impossibly light white-and-dark chocolate mousse cake will hook you for life. $-$$ Basanis3221 NE 2nd Ave., 786-925-0911Despite this tiny places modern dcor, the family-run ambiance and Italian-American comfort food evoke the neighborhood redsauce joints that were our favored hangouts growing up in NJs Sopranos territory. And low prices make it possible to hang out here frequently. Pizzas with hand-tossed crusts, not wood-oven but resembling honest bread, for less than fast food pizzeria prices? Its an offer you dont refuse. Dont refuse garlic rolls, either, or sinful zeppole (fried dough) for dessert. Theres more complex fare, like chicken la Francese, too. And they deliver. $$Bengal2010 Biscayne Blvd., 305-403-1976At this Indian eatery the dcor is cool and contemporary: muted gray and earth-tone walls, tasteful burgundy banquettes. And the menu touts Modern Indian Cuisine to match the look. Classicists, however, neednt worry. Americas favorite familiar north Indian flavors are here, though dishes are generally more mildly spiced and presented with modern flair. All meats are certified halal, Islams version of kosher which doesnt mean that observant orthodox Jews can eat here, but Muslims can. $$$Bin No. 181800 Biscayne Blvd., 786-235-7575At this wine bar/caf, the dcor is a stylish mix of contemporary (high loft ceilings) and Old World (tables made from wine barrels). Cuisine is similarly geared to the areas smart new residents: creative sandwiches and salads at lunch, tapas and larger internationally themed Spanish, Italian, or French charcuterie platters at night. Though the place is small and family-run friendly, chef Alfredo Patino offers sophisticated snacks like the figciutto: aru gula, gorgonzola dolce, caramelized onions, pine nuts, fresh figs, and prosciutto. Free parking behind the building. $$Blackbrick3451 NE 1st Ave. #103; 305-573-8886Inspiration for the Chinese food at this hotspot came from authentic flavors Richard Hales (from Sakaya Kitchen)

PAGE 81

Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT S

PAGE 82

Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT Sencountered during travels in China, but the chefs considerable imagination figures in mightily. Example: Dont expect General Tsos chicken on the changing menu. The Generals Florida Gator, though, is a distinct possibility. Dishes less wild but still thrilling, due to strong spicing: bing (chewy Chinese flatbread) with char sui, garlic, and scallions; two fried tofu/veggie dishes (one hot, one not) savory enough to bring bean curd maligners (and confirmed carnivores) to their knees. $$-$$$ Bocce Bar3252 NE 1st Ave. #107; 786-245-6211A bocce court outside plus interior dcor imported from Italy, floor to ceiling, serve notice that this eaterys shareable small plates (salumi/cheeses, pastas, and composed antipasti featuring perfect produce) are thoroughly Italian-inspired. But all are elevated by inventive twists from chef Timon Balloo, of adjacent Sugarcane. Vegetarian dishes especially impress: creamy polenta with a poached egg, savory rapini, and shaved truffle; crispy artichoke with mustard-seed aioli; Thumbelina carrots with mascarpone and pistachio granola, a dish that magically makes the common root veggie a mouthful of wonderfulness; 25 year-aged balsamico ice cream. $$$Buena Vista Bistro 4582 NE 2nd Ave., 305-456-5909If a neighborhood eatery like this one which serves supremely satisfying bistro food were within walking distance of every Miami resident, wed be a helluva hip food town. Like true Parisian bistros, its open continuously, every day, with prices so low that you can drop in anytime for authentic rillettes (a rustic pt) with a crusty baguette, steak with from-scratch frites, salmon atop ratatouille, or many changing blackboard specials. Portions are plentiful. So is free parking. $$Buena Vista Deli4590 NE 2nd Ave., 305-576-3945At this casual caf/bakery, co-owned by Buena Vista Bistros 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 pts, sinfully rich pork rillettes, superb salami, and other charcuterie classics) are irresistible, and a butterycrusted, custardy quiche plus perfectly dressed salad costs little more than a fast-food combo meal. As for Postels homemade French sweets, if you grab the last Paris-Brest, a praline buttercream-filled puff pastry, we may have to kill you. $-$$ The Butcher Shop165 NW 23rd St., 305-846-9120Unbelievable but true: At the heart of this festive, budgetfriendly beer-garden restaurant is an old-school gourmet butcher shop, where sausages from classic (brats, chorizo) to creative (lamb and feta) are house-made, and all beef is certified USDA prime -rarely found at even fancy steakhouses. Take your selections home to cook, or better yet, eat them here, accompanied by intriguing Old/New World sauces, garnishes (like bleu cheese fritters), sides, and starters. Desserts include a bacon sundae. Beer? Try an organic brew, custom-crafted for the eatery. $$-$$$Cafeina297 NW 23rd St., 305-438-0792This elegantly comfortable multi-room indoor/outdoor venue is described as an art gallery/lounge, and some do come just for cocktails like the hefty caf con leche martinis. But dont overlook chef Guily Booths 12-item menu of very tasty tapas. The signature item is a truly jumbo-lump crab cake with no discernable binder. At one South Beach Wine & Food Festival, Martha Stewart proclaimed it the best shed ever had. Our own prime pick: melt-in-your-mouth ginger sea bass anticuchos, so butteryrich we nearly passed out with pleasure. $$ Catch Grill & Bar1633 N. Bayshore Dr., 305-536-6414A location within easy walking distance of the Arsht Center for the Performing Arts, in the extensively renovated 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. Its worth calling to ask if the daily catch is wreckfish, a sustainable local that tastes like a cross between grouper and sea bass. Bonus: With validation, valet parking is free. $$$-$$$$ Cerviceria 100 Montaditos3252 NE 1st Ave. #104, 305-921-4373Student budget prices, indeed. A first-graders allowance would cover a meal at this first U.S. branch of a popular Spanish chain. The 100 mini sandwiches (on crusty, olive oil-drizzled baguettes) vary from $1 to $2.50, depending not on ingredient quality but complexity. A buck scores genuine Serrano ham, while top-ticket fillings add imported Iberico cheese, pulled pork, and tomato to the cured-ham slivers. Other options revolve around pts, smoked salmon, shrimp, and similar elegant stuff. Theres cheap draft beer, too, plus nonsandwich snacks. $$City Hall the Restaurant2004 Biscayne Blvd. 305-764-3130After 30+ years spent guiding other owners restaurants to success, Miami Spice program creator Steve Haas has opened his own expansive, two-floor place, on a stretch of Biscayne Boulevard thats suddenly looking fashionable. The vibe is a mix of power-dining destination and comfie neighborhood hangout, and chef Tom Azar (ex-Emerils) 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 bchamel; 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. $$-$$$$The Cheese Course3451 NE 1st Ave. 786-220-6681Not so much a restaurant as an artisanal cheese shop with complimentary prepared foods, this places self-service caf compo nent nevertheless became an instant hit. Impeccable ingredients and inspired combinations make even the simplest salads and sandwiches unique -like bacon and egg, elevated by hand-crafted cream cheese, roasted red peppers, avocado, and chipotle Mayo. Cheese platters are exceptional, and customized for flavor preference from mild to bold, and accompanied by appropriate fruits, veggies, nuts, olives, prepared spreads, and breads. $$Crumb on Parchment3930 NE 2nd Ave., 305-572-9444Though located in a difficult spot (the Melin Buildings central atrium, invisible from the street), Michelle Bernsteins bakery/caf packs em in, partly due to Bernsteins 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 aioli. 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. $-$$ The Cypress Room3620 NE 2nd Ave., 305-520-5197Deer and boar heads on wood-paneled walls juxtapose with crystal chandeliers at this tiny fourth restaurant in Michael Schwartzs burgeoning empire, evoking feelings of dining in a century-old millionaires hunting lodge -in miniature. Many dishes are similarly fun fantasies of 1920s Florida fine dining, pairing yesteryears rustic proteins (including wild game) and veggies with preparations that are ultimately refined interpretations of the past: antelope/wild mushroom gnocchi; French onion soup with a sort of gruyere tuile float instead of the usual gooey melt, served on a lacy doily. Dont miss the royal red shrimp, or Hedy Goldsmiths desserts. $$$$$ Daily Melt3401 N. Miami Ave. #123, 305-573-0101Masterminded by Chef Allen Susser, the concept is to bring diners the comfort of homemade grilled cheese -like moms, if mom hadnt usually burned the bread and improperly melted the cheese. The Melts custom grill press browns/melts sandwiches perfectly every time. Additionally, Susser tested numerous allAmerican cheeses (no imports or artisanal products) for gooey goodness. Mom probably also didnt create combinations like cheddar with green apples and Virginia ham, or allow a simple signature grilled American cheese to be dressed up with truffle butter. Accompaniments include roasted tomato soup, chopped salads, and sweet melts like smores. $The Daily Creative Food Co.2001 Biscayne Blvd., 305-573-4535While the food formula of this contemporary caf is familiar sandwiches, salads, soups, breakfast food, and pastries, plus coffee and fruit drinks a creative concept differentiates the place. Signature sandwiches are named after national and local newspapers, including Biscayne Times, giving diners something to chat about. Sandwiches and salads can also be do-it-yourself projects, with an unusually wide choice of main ingredients, garnishes, breads, and condiments for the creatively minded. $The District190 NE 46th St., 305-573-4199At the house whose original restaurant tenant was One Ninety, dcor has been renovated dramatically from shabby to chic, and the pan-American gastropub cuisine also matches a more mature Miami. Horacio Rivaderos dishes reflect both Latin and American influences with considerable creative flair and fun. Favorites: lobster tacos with pickled cabbage, aji Amarillo escabeche, and crisped shallots; luscious lamb tartare, featuring toasted pignolias and mustard oil; and the Black Magic mousse, with vanilla/sweet potato drizzles, housemade marshmallows, and a pistachio cookie. $$$-$$$$El Bajareque278 NW 36th St., 305-576-5170Dozens of little Latin American eateries, all looking almost identically iffy, line 36th Street. But this family-owned bajareque (shack) is one where you definitely want to stop for some of Miamis most tasty, and inexpensive, Puerto Rican home cooking, from mondongo (an allegedly hangover-curing soup) to mofongo, a plantain/chicharron mash with varied toppings plus garlicky mojo. Housemade snacks are irresistible, too, and great take-out party fare: pork-studded pasteles, similar to Cuban tamals but with a tuber rather than corn masa dough, or empanadas with savory shrimp stuffing. $ Egg & Dart4029 N. Miami Ave., 786-431-1022While co-owners Costa Grillas (from Marias, a Coral Gables staple) and Niko Theodorou (whose family members have several Greek islands restaurants) describe their cuisine as rustic Greek, there is surprising sophistication in some dishes: an especially delicate taramasalata (cod roe dip); precisely crispfried smelts (like a freshwater sardine); galactobourico, an often heavy and cloyingly vanilla-saturated dessert, here custardy and enlivened by orange flavor. Extensive lists of mezze (snacks) and creative cocktails make the expansive, invitingly decorated space ideal for large gatherings of friends who enjoy sharing. $$$ Enriquetas Sandwich Shop186 NE 29th St., 305-573-4681This Cuban breakfast/lunch old-timer actually serves more than sandwiches (including mammoth daily specials )-and since reopening after a fire, does so in a cleanly renovated interior. But many hardcore fans never get past the parking lots ordering window, and outdoors really is the best place to manage Enriquetas mojo-marinated messy masterpiece: pan con bistec, dripping with sauted onions, melted cheese, and potato sticks; tomatoes

PAGE 83

Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT Smake the fats and calories negligible. Accompany with fresh orange juice or caf con leche, and youll never want anything else, except maybe a bib. $The Embassy4600 NE 2nd Ave., 305-571-8446Dont come to this embassy for passports. The name is short for Embassy of Well-being and Debauchery. You will, however, feel transported to Spains gourmet capital, San Sebastian, after sampling ambassador Alan Hughess cunning pintxos (complexly layered Basque-style tapas). From a self-serve bar, choose from a changing selection of skewered stacks; brie, homemade fig jam, and twizzles of silky jamon Serrano; roast tomato, goat cheese, and anchovies on buttery garlic toast; many more. Small plates, to-die-for desserts like floating island with lychees, and weekend brunch items demonstrate similar mad-chef skills. $$-$$$ Georges Kitchen & The Loft3404 N. Miami Ave., 305-438-9199Veteran Miami restaurateur George-Eric Farge raises the sophistication bar at his new two-story restaurant/lounge. But the real star is Michelin-starred chef Steven Rojas, who combines French technique and personal creativity for dishes like Idiazabal cheese churros with romesco sauce, a green pea pot de crme jar with bacon marmalade (accompanied by butter-fried baguette slices for spreading), soy-glazed hamachi crudo with ginger gelee, and caper-sprinkled short rib tartare, the meats richness cheekily upped by poached bone marrow and caviar. Brunch and lunch items are equally ingenious. $$$Gigi3470 N. Miami Ave., 305-573-1520As befits its location in artful, working-class Wynwood, Gigi has minimalist modern diner ambiance paired with truly creative contemporary Asian-influenced comfort food from Top Chef contender Jeff McInnis (formerly of the South Beach Ritz-Carlton) at surprisingly low prices. From a menu encompassing noodle and rice bowls, steambun ssams, grilled goodies, and raw items, highlights include pillowylight roast pork-stuffed buns, and possibly the worlds best BLT, featuring Asian bun toast, thick pork belly slices rather than bacon, and housemade pickles. Theres $2 beer, too. $-$$ Harrys Pizzeria3918 N. Miami Ave., 786-275-4963In this humble space (formerly Pizza Volante) are many key components from Michaels Genuine Food & Drink two blocks east -local/sustainable produce and artisan products; wood-oven cooking; homemade everything (including the ketchup accompanying crisp-outside, custardy-inside polenta fries, a circa 1995 Michael Schwartz signature snack from Nemo). Beautifully blistered, ultra-thin-crusted pizzas range from classic Margheritas to pies with house-smoked bacon, trugole (a subtly flavorful -fruity, not funky -Alpine cheese), and other unique toppings. Rounding things out: simple but ingenious salads, ultimate zeppoles, and Florida craft beers. $$Hurricane Grill & Wings Shops at Midtown MiamiBuena Vista Avenue, 305-576-7133This Florida fast/casual chain became an instant hit in Midtown Miami owing to a winning concept: more than 35 heat-coded sauces and dry rubs meant for custom-tossing with wings and other things (including white-meat boneless wings, really wingshaped chicken breast pieces), accompanied by ranch or classic blue-cheese dip and celery. It would be silly to not pair your main with garlic/herb-butter parmesan fries. There are many other items, too, including salads. But hey, celery is salad, right? $$ Jean Pauls House2426 NE 2nd Ave., 305-573-7373Jean Paul Desmaison, original chef/co-owner of La Cofradia in Coral Gables, has chosen a decidedly less tony, more transitional neighborhood for this venture. But inside his renovated bungalow, ambiance is stylishly cozy, and the creative contemporary North/South American fusion cuisine is as elegant as ever. Best bets are dishes influenced by Desmaisons native Peru, including crispy pork belly braised in pisco with silky sweet potato pure, and a beautifully balanced nikkei (Japanese/ Peruvian) salmon sashimi that does the impossible: tame leche de tigre, Perus infamous tigers milk marinade. $$$-$$$$ Jimmyz Kitchen2700 N. Miami Ave. #5, 305-573-1505No need to trek to South Beach for what many consider Miamis best classic Puerto Rican mofongo (fried green plantains mashed with fresh garlic, olive oil, and pork cracklings, surrounded by chicken or shrimp in zesty criollo sauce). This new location is bigger and better than the original, plus the mofongo is served every day, not just on weekends. But dont ignore the meal-size salads or high-quality sandwiches, including a pressed tripleta containing roast pork, bacon, Black Forest ham, provolone, and caramelized onions. $$Joeys Italian Caf2506 NW 2nd Ave., 305-438-0488The first new restaurant in the Wynwood Caf District, this stylish indoor/outdoor Italian hangout is as casually cool as one would hope and as affordable. Theres a five-buck half-serving of spaghetti al pomodoro and respectable vino for under $30. And few can resist delicately thin, crunchy-crusted pizzas like the cre ative Dolce e Piccante or orgasmic Carbonara. Pastas are fresh; produce is largely local; the mosaic-centered dcor is minimalist but inviting. And no need to be wary of the warehouse district at night: Valet parking is free. $$-$$$Kouzina Greek Bistro3535 NE 2nd Ave., 305-392-1825Across the tracks from Midtown Miami, this hidden-by-hedges spot features a patio with authentically festive ambiance and food by Alexia Apostolidi, also authentically Greek but known to locals for her critically acclaimed fare at defunct Ariston. The menu includes many mezes, both traditional (like tsatziki and eggplant spreads) and unusual (bacalao croquettes with garlic pure and roasted beet coulis; sesame-sprinkled manouri cheese envelopes), plus limited entres highlighted by cheese/ herb-crusted lamb at dinner and lunchtimes lamb pita wrap. Dont miss the semolina pure side -heavenly Greek cheese grits. $-$$$La Provence2200 Biscayne Blvd., 305-576-8002(See Brickell / Downtown listing.)Lagniappe3425 NE 2nd. Ave., 305-576-0108In New Orleans, lagniappe means a little extra, like the 13th doughnut in a bakers dozen. And thats what you get at this combination wine and cheese bar/backyard BBQ/entertainment venue. Choose artisan cheeses and charcuterie from the fridges, hand them over when you pay (very little), and theyll be plated with extras: olives, bread, changing luscious condiments. Or grab fish, chicken, veggies, or steak (with salad or cornbread) from the hidden yards grill. Relax in the comfie mismatched furniture, over extensive wine/beer choices and laidback live music. No cover, no attitude. $$ Lemoni Caf4600 NE 2nd Ave., 305-571-5080The menu here reads like your standard sandwiches/salads/ starters primer. What it doesnt convey is the freshness of the ingredients and the care that goes into their use. Entre-size salads range from an elegant spinach (goat cheese, pears, walnuts, raisins) to chunky homemade chicken salad on a bed of mixed greens. Sandwiches (cold baguette subs, hot pressed paninis, or wraps, all accompanied by side salads) include a respectable Cuban and a veggie wrap with a deceptively rich-tasting light salad cream. $-$$Lime Fresh Mexican GrillShops at Midtown Miami Buena Vista Avenue, 305-576-5463Like its South Beach predecessor, this Lime was an instant hit, as much for being a hip new Midtown hangout as for its carefully crafted Tex-Mex food. The concept is fast casual rather than fast food meaning nice enough for a night out. It also means ingredients are always fresh. Seafood tacos are about as exotic as the menu gets, but the mahi mahi for fish tacos comes from a local supplier, and salsas are housemade daily. Niceties include low-carb tortillas and many Mexican beers. $Limn y Sabor3045 Biscayne Blvd., 786-431-5739In this dramatically renovated space, the room is now light and open, and the food is authentic Peruvian, with seafood a specialty. Portions are huge, prices low, quality high. Especially good are their versions of pescado a lo macho (fish fillet topped with mixed seafood in a creamy, zesty sauce); jalea (breaded and deep-fried fish, mixed seafood, and yuca, topped with onion/pepper/lime salsa), and yuca in hot yet fruity rocoto chili cream sauce. $$Lost & Found Saloon185 NW 36th St., 305-576-1008Theres an artsy/alternative feel to this casual and friendly Wynwood eatery, which, since opening as a weekday-only breakfast and lunch joint in 2005, has grown with its neighborhood. Its now open for dinner six nights a week, serving Southwestern-style fare at rock-bottom prices. Dishes like pion and pepita-crusted salmon, chipotle-drizzled endive stuffed with lump crab, or customizable tacos average $5-$8. Also available: big breakfasts and salads, hearty soups, housemade pastries like lemon-crusted wild berry pie, and a hip beer and wine list. $Mandolin Aegean Bistro4312 NE 2nd Ave., 305-576-6066Inside this converted 1940s homes blue-and-white dining room -or even more atmospherically, its tree-sheltered garden -diners feast on authentic rustic fare from both Greece and Turkey. Make a meal of multinational mezes: a Greek sampler of creamy tzatziki yogurt dip, smoky eggplant pure, and airy tarama caviar spread; and a Turkish sampler of hummus, fava pure, and rich tomato-walnut dip. The meze of mussels in lemony wine broth is, with Mandolins fresh-baked flatbread, almost a full meal in itself. $$-$$$ MC Kitchen4141 NE 2nd Ave., 305-456-9948Chef/co-owner Dena Marino calls MCs food modern Italian -neither an evocative description nor explanation for why this place is one of our towns hottest tickets. But tasting tells the tale. Marinos food incorporates her entire culinary background, from her Nonnas traditional Italian-American kitchen to a long stint in Michael Chiarellos famed contemporary Californian eatery Tra Vigne, with pronounced personal twists that make eating here uniquely exciting. Particularly definitive: lunchtimes piadenas, saladlike seasonal/regional ingredient combinations atop heavenly homemade flatbreads. Cocktails feature ingredients from zaatar to salmon roe. $$$-$$$$ Mercato4141 NE 2nd Ave., 786-332-3772Adjacent to Dena Marinos hot hangout MC Kitchen, the contemporary Italian chefs artisanal market and breakfast/lunch caf is for diners wanting a quicker (but not fast-food) sit-down meal, or inventive take-out. Pressed for time? Try a pressed sandwich like Marinos Italian Cubano (porchetta, prosciutto cotto, Swiss, pickles, and Dijon mustard dressing, on ciabatta). Along with hot or cold sandwiches, theres a wide variety of homemade breakfast pastries, breads, cookies, and fresh-baked quiches, plus salads and a daily-changing soup. Market items include exotic jams, craft beers, and Marinos private label EVOO. $-$$

PAGE 84

Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT S Mercadito Midtown3252 NE 1st Ave., 786-369-0423Some people frequent this fashionable restolounge, festooned with graffiti-style murals designed to evoke a bustling Mexican street market, just for the dangerously smooth margaritas. But the main must-haves here are tacos, encased in a rarity: genuinely made-from-scratch corn tortillas, small but fatly-stuffed. Of 11 varieties, our favorite is the carnitas (juicy braised pork, spicy chili de arbol slaw, toasted peanuts). A close second: the hongos, intensely flavorful huitlacoche and wild mushrooms, with manchego and salsa verde -a reminder that vegetarian food need not be bland. $$-$$$Michaels Genuine Food and Drink130 NE 40th St., 305-573-5550An instant smash hit, this truly neighborhood-oriented restaurant from chef Michael Schwartz offers down-to-earth fun food in a comfortable, casually stylish indoor/outdoor setting. Fresh, organic ingredients are emphasized, but dishes range from cutting-edge (crispy beef cheeks with whipped celeriac, celery salad, and chocolate reduction) to simple comfort food: deviled eggs, homemade potato chips with pan-fried onion dip, or a whole wood-roasted chicken. Theres also a broad range of prices and portion sizes to encourage frequent visits. Michaels Genuine also features an eclectic, affordable wine list and a full bar. $$-$$$$Mikes at Venetia555 NE 15th St., 9th floor, 305-374-5731This family-owned Irish pub, on the pool deck of the Venetia condo, for more than 15 years has been a popular lunch and dinner hang-out for local journalists and others who appreciate honest cheap eats and drinks. Regulars know daily specials are the way to go. Depending on the day, fish, churrasco, or roast turkey with all the trimmings are all prepared fresh. Big burgers and steak dinners are always good. A limited late-night menu provides pizza, wings, ribs, and salad till 3:00 a.m. $-$$Morgans Restaurant28 NE 29th St., 305-573-9678Housed in a beautifully refurbished 1930s private home, Morgans serves eclectic, sometimes internationally influenced contemporary American cuisine compelling enough to attract hordes. Dishes are basically comfort food, but ultimate comfort food: the most custardy, fluffy French toast imaginable; shoe string frites that rival Belgiums best; mouthwatering maple-basted bacon; miraculously terrific tofu (crisply panko-crusted and apricot/soy-glazed); even a voluptuous grilled cheese sandwich -definitely a dont ask, dont tell your cardiologist item. $$-$$$NoVe Kitchen & Bar1750 N. Bayshore Dr., 305-503-1000At NoVe, the restolounge at the Opera Tower condo in NoVe (new nickname for the bayfront neighborhood north of the Venetian Causeway), the food is East-West. Meaning you can get burgers, pasta, and so on, or try the inventive Asian small plates and sushi specialties Hiro Terada originated at his past posts, Doraku and Moshi Moshi: the Atlantis roll (tempura conch with asparagus, avocado, scallions, and curry sauce); spicy, crunchy fried tofu atop kimchi salad; much more. Open 6:00 a.m. for breakfast to 3:00 a.m., it is kid-friendly and dog-friendly, too. $$-$$$Oak Tavern35 NE 40th St., 786-391-1818With a festively lantern-lit oak tree on the outdoor dining patio and stylishly playful lamps mimicking oaks inside, chef/restaurateur David Bracha of River Oyster Bar has transformed a previously cold space to warm. Food is equally inviting. The mostly small-plates seasonal menu roams the globe from supreme Vietnamese bahn mi (with pork belly and foie gras) to downhome buttermilk biscuits with bacon butter, and homemade char cuterie. If available, dont miss Hawaiian-inspired steelhead poke; substituting the salmonlike but more delicate trout for the usual tuna transports this crudo to heavenly heights. $$-$$$ Orange Caf + Art2 NE 40th St., 305-571-4070The paintings hanging in this tiny, glass-enclosed caf are for sale. And for those who dont have thousands of dollars to shell out for the local art on the walls, less than ten bucks will get you art on a plate, including a Picasso: chorizo, prosciutto, manchego cheese, baby spinach, and basil on a crusty baguette. Other artfully named and crafted edibles include salads, daily soups, several pastas (like the Matisse, fiocchi pouches filled with pears and cheese), and house-baked pastries. $ Palatino3004 NW 2nd Ave., 786-360-5200When longtime favorite Jamaican joint Clives fell victim to gentrification, few expected to find similarly skilled old-school Caribbean-American soul food in Wynwood again, especially not at old-school prices. But thats what this small, super-friendly mom-and-pop spot serves up: breakfasts like ackee and salt fish, fried dumpling and callaloo, or an egg/maple sausage/cheese grits combo; plates (with sides) of oxtails, curry goat, jerk chicken; richly crusted piquant chicken or meat patties that contend with Miamis best. Surprises include homemade pastries, and $1 ice cream cones in tropical flavors like soursop. $-$$ Pashas 3801 Biscayne Blvd., 305-573-0201(See Brickell/Downtown listing)Pride & Joy2800 N. Miami Ave., 305-456-9548Behind this Wynwood warehouse faade youll find pure Southern roadhouse, and the backyard patio is an even more relaxing place to kick back with beer, blues music, and barbecue from pit master Myron Mixon. Oddly, considering Mixons many BBQ championships, the cue can be inconsistent. Our favorite choices: St. Louis ribs, tender without being falling-off-the bone overcooked, and enjoyably fattier than baby backs; vinegar-doused pulled pork sandwiches, which, unlike meat plates, come with sides -fries, plus slaw to pile on for added juice and crunch. $$$ Primos1717 N. Bayshore Dr., 305-371-9055The imposing, cavernous lobby of the Grand doesnt have that do drop in locals hangout vibe. But this lively Italian spot is actually a great addition to the neighborhood. The pizzas alone brick-oven specimens with toppings ranging from classic pepperoni to prosciutto/arugula would be draw enough. But pastas also please: diners choice of starch, with mix-and-match sauces and extras. And the price is right, with few entres topping $20. The capper: Its open past midnight every day but Sunday. $$Sakaya KitchenShops at Midtown Miami, Buena Vista Avenue 305-576-8096This chef-driven, fast-casual Asian eatery is more an izakaya (in Japan, a pub with food) than a sakaya (sake shop). But why quibble about words with so many more intriguing things to wrap your mouth around? The concept takes on street-food favorites from all over Asia, housemade daily from quality fresh ingredients. French Culinary Institute-trained Richard Hales does change his menu, so wed advise immediately grabbing some crispy Korean chicken wings and Chinese-inspired, open-faced roast pork buns with sweet chili sauce and homemade pickles. $$ Sake Room 275 NE 18th St., 305-755-0122Sake takes a back seat to sushi and sophisticated dcor at this small but sleek restolounge. Among the seafood offerings, you wont find exotica or local catches, but all the usual sushi/ sashimi favorites, though in more interesting form, thanks to sauces that go beyond standard soy spicy sriracha, garlic/ ponzu oil, and many more. Especially recommended: the yuzu hamachi roll, the lobster tempura maki, and panko-coated spicy shrimp with hot-and-sour Mayo and a salad. $$-$$$Salad Creations2001 Biscayne Blvd., 305-576-5333At this fast-casual restaurant, diners can enjoy a wide variety ofchef-created salads and wraps, or go the DIY route, choosing from one of four greens options; four dozen add-ons (fresh, dried, or pickled veggies and fruits, plus cheeses and slightly sinful pleasures like candied pecans or wonton strips); a protein (seafood or poultry); and two dozen dressings, ranging from classic (Thousand Island, bleu cheese) to creative contemporary (spicy Asian peanut, cucumber wasabi, blueberry pomegranate). Additionally, the place creates lovely catering platters, plus individual lunchboxes -perfect picnic or plane food. $-$$ Salumeria 1043451 NE 1st Ave. #104, 305-424-9588In Italy, salumerias started, like American delicatessens, as shops selling salumi (cured meats), but evolved into the equivalent of eat-in deli/restaurants that also serve cold and hot prepared foods. At this modern Midtown salumeria, the soupsto-salads-to-sweets range of fare is the same. Custom-sliced imported cold cuts are a main focus, especially for those who enjoy taste-testing a plate pairing Italys two most famous pro sciuttos: Parma and San Daniele. But homemade pastas are also impressive, as are hard-to-find regional entres like fegato alla Veneziana, which will turn liver-haters into lovers. $$-$$$ Salsa Fiesta2929 Biscayne Blvd., 305-400-8245The first stateside offshoot of a popular Venezuelan mini chain, this urban Mexican grill serves health-conscious, made-freshdaily fare similar in concept to some fast-casual competitors. But there are indeed differences here, notably pan-Latin options: black beans as well as red; thin, delightfully crunchy tostones (available as a side or as the base for a uniquely tasty take on normal nachos). Other pluses include weekday happy hours with two-for-one beers -and free parking. $-$$ S & S Diner1757 NE 2nd Ave., 305-373-4291Some things never change, or so it seems at this classic diner. Open since 1938, people still line up on Saturday mornings, waiting for a seat at the counter and enormous breakfasts: corned beef hash or crab cakes and eggs with grits; fluffy pancakes; homemade biscuits with gravy and Georgia sausage everything from oatmeal to eggs Benedict. The lunch menu is a roll call of the usual suspects, but most regulars ignore the menu and go for the daily blackboard specials. $-$$Shokudo World Resource Caf 4740 NE 2nd Ave., 305-758-7782At its former Lincoln Road location, World Resources caf was better known for people-watching than for its standard sushi/ Thai menu. But as the new name signals, this relocation is a reinvention. The indoor/outdoor space is charming, but creative takes on popular pan-Asian street foods are the real draw. Travel from Japan and Thailand through Korea, Vietnam, China, the Philippines, and beyond via light housemade momo, curried potato-stuffed Tibetan/Nepalese steamed dumplings; savory pulled pork buns with kimchi and crisped onions. Noodle dishes, hot or chilled, are especially appealing. $$-$$$ Soi Chinese Kitchen645 NW 20th St., 305-482-0238No chop suey. No kung pao anything, either. In fact, anything on Sois menu that sounds like something from a normal Chinese eatery wont be: char sui ribs come with delicate corn pancakes, wonton soup is kafir lime broth with a mushroom/truffle-butterstuffed ravioli, lo mein is housemade noodles with pork belly and sous vide 63-degree egg. Basically its contemporary Chinese fine dining fare similar in creativity and quality ingredients to ultra-upscale Hakkasans, but served by a tiny take-out joint (with a few patio tables and counter stools) at neighborhood prices. $$Sugarcane Raw Bar Grill3250 NE 1st Ave., 786-369-0353This chic indoor/outdoor space is an offspring of Lincoln Roads SushiSamba Dromo and a sibling of Sugarcane lounges in NYC and Las Vegas, but more informal than the former and more food-oriented than the latter, as three kitchens -normal, raw bar, and robata charcoal grill -make clear. Chef Timon Balloos LatAsian small plates range from subtle orange/fennel-marinated salmon crudo to intensely smoky-rich short ribs. At the daily happy hour, select dishes (like steamed pork buns with apple kimchi) are discounted. $$-$$$SuViche2751 N. Miami Ave., 305-960-7097As its fusion name suggests, this artsy indoor/outdoor eatery doesnt merely serve a mix of Japanese sushi and Latin ceviches but a true fusion of both, largely owing to signature sauces (many based on Perus citusy/creamy acevichado emulsion with Japanese spicing) that are applied to sushi rolls and ceviche bowls alike. Additionally there are some popular Peruvian-fusion cooked dishes like Chifa (Peruvian-Chinese) lomo saltado, served traditionally, as an entre, or creatively in springs rolls). To add to the fun, accompany your meal with a cocktail from Miamis only pisco bar. $$-$$$ Thea Pizzeria-Caf1951 NW 7th Ave., 305-777-3777Just over the border from artsy Wynwood, this ultra-cool caf (whose interior features a 30-foot Italian glass floral mosaic) isnt what youd expect to find inside one of the medical/lab buildings in Miamis sterile Health District. But the owner is Thea Goldman, former founding partner of Wynwoods pioneer ing restolounge Joeys, which explains both the stylishness and the menu, highlighted by imaginative wood-oven designer pizzas, plus artisan charcuterie/cheese platters, creative salads, and housemade salted caramel gelato. Not your typical hospital food. Call ahead regarding dinner. At this writing, its being served Fridays only. $$-$$$Tony Chans Water Club1717 N. Bayshore Dr., 305-374-8888The dcor at this upscale place, located in the Grand, looks too glitzy to serve anything but politely Americanized Chinese food. But the American dumbing-down is minimal. Many dishes are far more authentic and skillfully prepared than those found elsewhere in Miami, like delicate but flavorful yu pan quail. Moist sea bass fillet has a beautifully balanced topping of scallion, ginger, cilantro, and subtly sweet/salty sauce. And Peking duck is served as three traditional courses: crpe-wrapped crispy skin, meat sauted with crisp veggies, savory soup to finish. $$-$$$Wine Vault MiamiShops at Midtown Miami Fountain Circle #105, 786-691-2000From a Wine Vault press release: Over 1300 square feet of pure decadence. In fact, the soaring, two-story space, complete with glass elevator, has a look that lives up to the hype. But the most decadent thing inside is a nibble from its tapas list: chocolatecovered bacon. Go ahead and make a meal of it. We grown-ups can eat what we want. More substantial plates to accompany the roughly four dozen wines, artisan beers, or cocktails include chorizo with new potatoes, and sweetly piquant piquillo peppers stuffed with shredded tuna. Happy-hour wine prices are so low wed better not mention them. $$-$$$ Wynwood Kitchen & Bar2550 NW 2nd Ave., 305-722-8959The exterior is eye-popping enough, with murals from worldfamous outdoor artists, but its the interior that grabs you. Colorful and exotic work by Shepard Fairey, Christian Awe, and other acclaimed artists makes it one of the most striking restau rant spaces anywhere. As for food, the original menu has been replaced with Spanish/Latin/Mediterranean-inspired favorites from chef Miguel Aguilar (formerly of Alma de Cuba): gazpacho or black bean soups; shredded chicken ropa vieja empanadas with cilantro crema; grilled octopus skewers with tapenade; plus fingerling potato-chorizo hash and other seasonal farm-to-table veg dishes. $$-$$$ Upper EastsideAndiamo5600 Biscayne Blvd. 305-762-5751With brick-oven pizzerias popping up all over town the past few years, its difficult to remember the dark days when this part of Mark Soykas 55th Street Station complex was mainland Miamis sole source of open-flame-cooked pies. But the pizzas still hold up against the newbie pack, especially since exec chef Frank Crupi has upped the ante with unique-to-Miami offerings like a white (tomato-free) New Haven clam pie. Also available: salads, panini, and a tasty meatball appetizer with ricotta. Theres a respectable wine and beer list, too. $$Balans Biscayne6789 Biscayne Blvd., 305-534-9191It took longer than expected, but this Brit imports third Miami venue finally opened, and rather quietly -which has an upside. Its easier to get a table here (and to park, thanks to the free lot on 68th Street) than at Lincoln Road or Brickell. This, along with the venues relatively large, open-to-the-street outdoor area, contributes to a more relaxed, neighborhood-focused vibe. The fun menu of global comfort food is the same (ranging from a creamycentered cheese souffl through savory Asian potstickers and, at breakfast, fluffy pecan/maple-garnished pancakes) and prepared as reliably well. $$-$$$Biscayne Diner8601 Biscayne Blvd., 305-756-9910 At this architecturally mixed-era diner (signage: 1960s Jetsons; building: 1930s urban-gritty), the menu is equally eclectic. Example: The entre section includes meatloaf, but the other half-dozen dishes are Italian. Hefty burgers are always terrific. Otherwise, the chef seems most excited by experimentation, so the blackboards Daily Specials are the interesting way to go, whether the item is an ambitious quail or a fresh-baked oldfashioned pie. If we could stop stuffing ourselves silly on the big, fat, breaded onion rings, we could tell you more. But thats not gonna happen.

PAGE 85

Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT SBlue Collar6730 Biscayne Blvd., 305-756-0366Like its predecessor in this space (Michael Bloises American Noodle Bar), this working-class-themed eatery is helmed by a former fine-dining chef, Daniel Serfer, a Chef Allens vet who now crafts casual, creative fare at prices all can afford. Dishes are eclectic. The roughly dozen veggie dishes alone range from curried cauliflower pure to maduros to bleu cheese roasted asparagus. Shrimp and grits compete with any in Charleston; pork and beans, topped with a perfectly runny fried egg, beats Bostons best. $-$$Boteco916 NE 79th St., 305-757-7735This strip of 79th Street is rapidly becoming a cool alt-culture enclave thanks to inviting hangouts like this rustic indoor/outdoor Brazilian restaurant and bar. Especially bustling on nights featuring live music, its even more fun on Sundays, when the fenced backyard hosts an informal fair and the menu includes Brazils national dish, feijoada, a savory stew of beans plus fresh and cured meats. But the everyday menu, ranging from unique, tapas-like pasteis to hefty Brazilian entres, is also appealing and budget-priced. $$B & M Market219 NE 79th St., 305-757-2889Dont let the rustic look of this mom-and-pop Caribbean market/eatery, or its ungentrified location, scare you. Walk to the kitchen in the back of the market, order, and then either eat-in (at two tables) or take-out some of Miamis tastiest, and cheapest, West Indian food. Celeb chef Michelle Bernstein is a longtime fan of the jerk chicken, ackee and saltfish, and pigeon peas and rice cooked in coconut milk. Rotis rule here; the flatbreads come plain or, better yet, in curry chicken, goat, or remarkably full-flavored vegetarian versions. $DeVitas7251 Biscayne Blvd., 305-754-8282This Italian/Argentine pizzeria, housed in a charming bungalow and featuring a breezy patio, covers multicultural bases. If the Old World Rucola pizza (a classic Margherita topped with arugula, prosciutto, and shredded parmesan) doesnt do the trick, the New World Especial (a Latin pie with hearts of palm and boiled eggs) just might. Also available are pastas, salads, sandwiches, dinner entres (eggplant parmigiana with spaghetti, lomito steak with Argentinean potato salad), and desserts (tiramisu or flan). $ Dogma Grill7030 Biscayne Blvd. 305-759-3433Since Frankie and Priscilla Crupi took over this hot dog stand, the menu has changed significantly, with some items eliminated (any vegetarian hot dogs, salads, chichi toppings like avocado). But choices have expanded to include new dog choices (brats, Italian sausage, more) plus burgers and other classic eastern U.S. regional urban street foods: New England lobster rolls, New Orleans poboys, Jersey shore cheese Taylors (pork roll), Baltimore crab cake sandwiches, and naturally, Phillys of all sorts -cheese steak and beyond. $-$$ East Side Pizza731 NE 79th St., 305-758-5351Minestrone, sure. But a pizzeria menu with carrot ginger soup? Similarly many Italian-American pizzerias offer entres like spaghetti and meatballs, but East Side also has pumpkin ravioli in brown butter/sage sauce, wild mushroom ravioli, and other surprisingly upscale choices, including imported Peroni beer. As for the pizza, they are classic pies, available whole or by the slice, made with fresh plum tomato sauce and Grande mozzarella (considered the top American pizza cheese). Best seating for eating is at the sheltered outdoor picnic tables. $Fiorito5555 NE 2nd Ave., 305-754-2899While owners Max and Cristian Alvarezs description of their eatery as a little Argentinean shack is as charming as the brothers themselves, it conveys neither the places cool warmth nor the foods exciting elegance. Dishes are authentically Argentine, but far from standard steakhouse stuff. Chef Cristians background at popular pop-up The Dining Room becomes instantly understandable in dishes like orange and herb-scented lechon confit (with pumpkin mash, pickled cabbage salad, and Dijon mojo) or sopa de calabaza, derived from Argentinas peasant stew locro, but here a refined, creamy soup. Many more surprises -even steaks. $$-$$$ The Federal Food, Drink & Provisions5132 Biscayne Blvd., 305-758-9559At the Fed, expect what locals know to expect from sommelier/ chef team Aniece Meinhold and Cesar Zapata, whose previous restaurant concepts have included Blue Piano (gourmet stoner snacks) and Vietnamese pop-up Phuc Yea. That is, expect the unexpected. The Fed is an updated tavern featuring creative, from-scratch takes on traditional American regional dishes: flaky Southern biscuits with sausage gravy (and crisp-coated sweetbreads, if desired); Northeastern-inspired pig wings (pork drummettes with homemade Buffalo sauce, blue cheese mousse, and pickled veggies). Desserts, from third partner Alejandro Ortiz, include sinful sticky buns. $$-$$$ Garden of Eatin136 NW 62nd St., 305-754-8050Housed in a yellow building thats nearly invisible from the street, the Garden has the comfortable feel of a beach bar, and generous servings of inexpensive Afro-Caribbean vegan food. Large or small plates, with salad and fried sweet plantains (plus free soup for eat-in lunchers), are served for five or seven bucks. Also available are snacks like vegetarian blue corn tacos, desserts like sweet potato pie, and a breakfast menu featuring organic blueberry waffles with soy sausage patties. $Jimmys East Side Diner7201 Biscayne Blvd., 305-754-3692Open for more than 30 years, Jimmys respects the most important American diner tradition: breakfast at any hour. And now that the place is open for dinner, you can indulge your breakfast cravings for several more hours. There are blueberry hot cakes and pecan waffles; eggs any style, including omelets and openface frittatas; and a full range of sides: biscuits and sausage gravy, grits, hash, hash browns, even hot oatmeal. And dont forget traditional diner entres like meat loaf, roast turkey, liver and onions, plus burgers, salad platters, and homemade chicken soup. $-$$La Tour Eiffel7281 Biscayne Blvd., 305-754-0014 This cute restaurant/crperie serves three meals, from traditional French breakfasts of croissants/baguettes and jam, or heftier ones including pain perdu (real French toast), to dinners featuring a chefs special $28.90 two-course meal of classics: country pt, Provencal fish soup, bold boeuf bourgignon, creamy-rich poulet la Normande, a moules/frites that even comes with a glass of muscadet, and many more starter/entre choices. But definitely dont miss the crpes, served all day in both sweet and savory varieties -the latter made correctly, for a change, with heftier buckwheat flour. $$-$$$$ Lo De Lea7001 Biscayne Blvd., 305-456-3218 In Casa Toscanas former space, this cute, contemporary parillada is proof that you can have an Argentinean meal and a cho lesterol test in the same month. While traditional parillada dishes are tasty, theyre meat/fat-heavy, basically heaps of grilled beef. Here the grill is also used for vegetables (an unusually imaginative assortment, including bok choi, endive, and fennel), two of which are paired with your protein of choice. You can indulge in a mouthwateringly succulent vacio (flank steak), and walk out without feeling like youre the cow. $$-$$$Magnum Lounge709 NE 79th St., 305-757-3368Its a restaurant. Its a lounge. But its decidedly not a typical Miami restolounge, or like anything else in Miami. Forbidding from the outside, on the inside its like a time-trip to a cabaret in pre-WWII Berlin: bordello-red dcor, romantically dim lighting, show-tune live piano bar entertainment, and to match the ambiance, elegantly updated retro food served with style and a smile. For those feeling flush, home-style fried chicken is just like mom used to make in her wildest dreams. $$$Metro Organic Bistro 7010 Biscayne Blvd., 305-751-8756 Big changes have come to Karma the car wash, the first being a separate new name for the revamped restaurant: Metro Organic Bistro, an all-organic fine-dining restaurant where simple preparations reveal and enhance natural flavors. An entirely new menu places emphasis on grilled organic meat and fish dishes. Try the steak frites organic, grass-fed skirt steak with organic chimichurri and fresh-cut fries. Vegetarians will love the organic portabella foccacia. Dine either inside the architect-designed restaurant or outdoors on the patio. Beer and wine. $-$$$ Michys6927 Biscayne Blvd., 305-759-2001Dont even ask why Michele Bernstein, with a top-chef rsum, not to mention regular Food Network appearances, opened a homey restaurant in an emerging but far from fully gentrified neighborhood. Just be glad she did, as you dine on white almond gazpacho or impossibly creamy ham and blue cheese croquetas. Though most full entres also come in half-size portions (at almost halved prices), the tab can add up fast. The star herself is usually in the kitchen. Parking in the rear off 69th Street. $$$-$$$$ Minas Mediterraneo749 NE 79th St., 786-391-0300Unlike most restaurants labeled Mediterranean, this one, deco rated with restrained modern elegance, really does have dishes from countries surrounding all sides of the sea (though not necessarily from the countries seaside regions, as boeuf Bourguignon attests). Our favorites, like owner Yasmine Kotb, whose heritage is Egyptian-via-Texas, and her mom, the chef, are those featuring exotic Eastern/North African tastes -with twists. Especially fun: Egypts besara, a light fava-based hummus; falafel sliders in warm pita with Israeli salad, slaw, and tahini; and an unusual side of grilled kale with yogurt dressing and hazelnuts. $$Mi Vida Caf7244 Biscayne Blvd., 305-759-6020At this indoor/outdoor vegetarian and raw-food vegan caf, culinary-school-trained chef/owner Daniela Lagamma produces purist produce-oriented dishes that are easy to understand, like spar kling-fresh salads and smoothies, plus more technique-intensive mock meat or cheese items, based on soy proteins, that satisfy even confirmed carnivores. Particularly impressive on the regular menu: a superior Sloppy Joe made with mushroom confit, braised homemade seitan, spinach, and rich almond romescu sauce; and cannelloni de verdura, homemade crepes stuffed with spinach and cashew ricotta. Do check the daily specials, too. $$-$$$Moonchine7100 Biscayne Blvd., 305-759-3999Like its Brickell-area sibling Indochine, this friendly Asian bistro serves fare from three nations: Japan, Thailand, and Vietnam. Menus are also similar, split between traditional dishes like pad Thai and East/West fusion creations like the Vampire sushi roll (shrimp tempura, tomato, cilantro, roasted garlic). But it also carves out its own identity with original creations, including yellow curry-spiced fried rice. Nearly everything is low in sodium, fat, and calories. A large rear patio is inviting for dining and entertainment. $$-$$$Moshi Moshi 7232 Biscayne Blvd., 786-220-9404This offspring of South Beach old-timer Moshi Moshi is a cross between a sushi bar and an izakaya (Japanese tapas bar). Even more striking than the hip dcor is the foods unusually upscale quality. Sushi ranges from pristine individual nigiri to over-the-top maki rolls. Tapas are intriguing, like arabiki sausage,

PAGE 86

86 Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT S a sweet-savory pork fingerling frank; rarely found in restaurants even in Japan, theyre popular Japanese home-cooking items. And rice-based plates like Japanese curry (richer/sweeter than Indian types) satisfy even the biggest appetites. $-$$$News Lounge5582 NE 4th Ct., 305-758-9932Mark Soykas new News is, as its name suggests, more a friendly neighborhood hangout and watering hole than a full-fledged eatery. Nevertheless the menu of light bites is along with other lures like an inviting outdoor patio and rest rooms that resemble eclectic art galleries part of the reason visitors stay for hours. Especially recommended are fat mini-burgers with chipotle ketchup; a brie, turkey, and mango chutney sandwich on crusty baguette; and what many feel is the original cafs Greatest Hit: creamy hummus with warm pita. $Ni.Do. Caffe & Mozzarella Bar7295 Biscayne Blvd., 305-960-7022Dont let this little cafs easily overlooked strip-mall location, or its informal interior, fool you. The warm welcome is authentically Italian, as are cleverly crafted antipasti, simple but full-flavored pastas, and homemade pastries (from rosemary breadsticks to fruit-topped dessert tortas) that will transport your taste buds to Tuscany. And the housemade mozzarella or burrata cheeses -truly milk elevated to royalty -will transport you to heaven. A small market area provides Italian staples, plus superb salumi and the magnificent mozz, to go. $$-$$$Royal Bavarian Schnitzel Haus1085 NE 79th St., 305-754-8002With Christmas lights perpetually twinkling and party noises emanating from a new outdoor biergarten, this German restaurant is owner Alex Richters one-man gentrification project, transforming a formerly uninviting stretch of 79th Street one pils at a time. The fare includes housemade sausages (mild veal bratwurst, hearty mixed beef/ pork bauernwurst, spicy garlicwurst) with homemade mustard and catsup; savory yet near-greaseless potato pancakes; and, naturally, schnitzels, a choice of delicate pounded pork, chicken, or veal patties served with a half-dozen different sauces. $$-$$$Siam Rice7941 Biscayne Blvd., 305-758-0516Youll find all the familiar favorite Thai and Japanese items here, and prices for curries and noodle dishes (all customizable regarding choice of protein, preparation, and heat level) are especially good at lunch. But dont overlook somewhat pricier specialties like a deep-fried yet near-greaseless boneless half duck with veggies in red curry sauce. Theres also an unusually extensive list of salads, some with inventive fusion touches, like a grilled shrimp/ soba salad featuring traditional Thai flavors (sriracha chiles, fish sauce, lime) and Japanese green tea noodles. $-$$$ Soyka5556 NE 4th Court, 305-759-3117Since opening in 1999, Soyka has often been credited with sparking the Upper Eastsides revival. But the 2010 arrival of three Joe Allen veterans as executive chef, pastry chef, and sommelier signaled a culinary revival for the restolounge, always a neighborhood focal point, now more food-focused. The contemporary comfort food menu ranges from fun small plates (deviled eggs with smoked salmon and dill, crisp-fried fiocchi pockets with gorgonzola sauce, oysters Rockefeller) to heftier items like burgers and steak au poivre. And dont miss the sticky date/toffee pudding. $$-$$$ Sushi Siam5582 NE 4th Ct., 305-751-7818On the menu of sushi-bar specialties plus a small selection of Thai and Japanese cooked dishes, there are a few surprises, such as a unique lobster maki thats admittedly huge in price ($25.95), but also in size: six ounces of crisp-fried lobster chunks, plus asparagus, avocado, lettuce, tobiko (flying fish), masago (smelt) roes, and special sauces. Thai dishes come with a choice of more than a dozen sauces, ranging from traditional red or green curries to the inventive, such as an unconventional honey sauce. $$$Sweet Saloon7100 Biscayne Blvd., 305-759-3999At this dessert/snack/cocktail bar, from the owner of Moonchine, youll find live and DJ entertainment, too, from 9:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m.-assuming you can find the place, that is. Its above the panAsian eatery, up a hidden back staircase. Asian savory snacks include dumplings, edamame, krab rangoons, satays. Desserts range from homey American (NY cheesecake, mini cupcakes) to continental (strawberries melba, housemade Belgian waffles, a shareable chocolate fondue/fruit platter). Actually, some cocktails double as desserts (a Godiva dark chocolate martini) or Asian savories (infusion jars of Stoli and lemongrass). $$NORTH BAY VILLAGEOggis Caffe1666 79th St. Causeway, 305-866-1238This cozy, romantic spot started back in 1989 as a pasta factory (supplying numerous high-profile restaurants) as well as a neighborhood eatery. And the wide range of budget-friendly, home made pastas, made daily, remains the main draw for its large and loyal clientele. Choices range from homey, meaty lasagna to luxuriant crab ravioli with creamy lobster sauce, with occasional forays into creative exotica such as seaweed spaghettini, with sea scallops, shitakes, and fresh tomatoes. $$-$$$Paprika1624 NE 79th St., 305-397-8777 This exotically decorated restaurant, serving Mediterranean cuisine from North Africa and the Middle East, has several unusual features, including Friday-night belly dancing and a hookah lounge. Food menus also feature appealing, unusual choices (zaatar-spiced seared lamb loin carpaccio with chickpea pure; stuffed boureka puff pastries; mussels in creamy saffron sauce) along with familiar hummus, kabobs, more. Lunchtime sandwich standout: merguez (intensely spiced lamb sausage) with tzatziki, hummus, salad, and fiery harissa sauce, on fresh pita. $$-$$$ Sabor Latin Restaurant & Cafe1880 79th St. Cswy., 305-741-2020This family-run restaurant serves big portions of homey traditional food from several Latin American countries, including Cuba (pan con bistec, ropa vieja), Mexico (nachos, tacos, quesadillas), and Peru (lomo saltado). But the specialty is Colombian classics, from snacks like empanadas to a bandeja paisa combo (grilled steak, chorizo, a gargantuan crispy chicharron strip, fried egg, arepa, plantains, beans, rice). Particularly recommended: daily specials including two meal-in-a-bowl chicken soups, ajiaco, and sancocho. If youve wondered about the much-debated difference, heres where to test the taste. $-$$Sushi Siam1524 NE 79th St. Causeway, 305-864-7638(See Miami / Upper Eastside listing)NORTH BEACHCaf Prima Pasta 414 71st St., 305-867-0106Who says old dogs cant learn new tricks? Opened in 1993 (with 28 seats), the Cea familys now-sprawling trattoria has added inventive chef Carlos Belon and modern menu items, including fiocchi rapera (pear/cheese-filled pasta purses with truffled prosciutto cream sauce), an unlikely (soy sauce and parmesan cheese?) but luscious Italian/ Japanese fusion tuna carpaccio, and fresh-fruit sorbets. But traditionalists neednt worry. All the old favorites, from the cafs famed beef carpaccio to eggplant parm and pastas sauced with Argentine-Italian indulgence, are still here and still satisfying. $$$-$$$$ Lous Beer Garden7337 Harding Ave., 305-704-7879Beer garden conjures up an image of Bavarian bratwurst, lederhosen, and oompah bands -none of which youll find here. Its actually a hip hideaway in the New Hotels pool-patio area, a locals hangout with interesting eclectic fare and a perennial party atmosphere. Especially recommended: delicately pan-fried mini-crab cakes served with several housemade sauces; hefty bleu cheese burgers with Belgian-style double-cooked fries; blackened angry shrimp with sweet/sour sauce; fried fresh sardines. And of course much beer, a changing list of craft brews. $$-$$$Tamarind Thai 946 Normandy Dr., 305-861-6222When an eaterys executive chef is best-selling Thai cookbook author Vatcharin Bhumichitr, youd expect major media hype, fancy South Beach prices, and a fancy SoBe address. Instead Bhumichitr joined forces with Day Longsomboon (an old Thai school pal whod moved to Miami) at this unpretentious, authentic (no sushi) neighborhood place. Some standout dishes here are featured in the chefs latest tome, but with Tamarinds very affordable prices, you might as well let the mans impeccably trained kitchen staff do the work for you. $$-$$$MIAMI SHORESCte Gourmet9999 NE 2nd Ave., #112, 305-754-9012If only every Miami neighborhood could have a neighborhood restaurant like this low-priced little French jewel. The menu is mostly simple stuff: breakfast croissants, crpe, soups, sandwiches, salads, sweets, and a few more substantial specials like a Tunisianstyle brik (buttery phyllo pastry stuffed with tuna, onions, potatoes, and tomatoes) with a mesclun side salad. But everything is homemade, including all breads, and prepared with impeccable ingredients, classic French technique, and meticulous attention to detail, down to the stylish plaid ribbons that hold together the cafs baguette sandwiches. $-$$ Miami Shores Country Club10000 Biscayne Blvd., 305-795-2363Formerly members-only, the restaurant/lounge facilities of this classy 1939 club are now open to the public always, lunch and dinner. Not surprisingly, ambiance is retro and relaxed, with golf course views from both bar and indoor/outdoor dining room. The surprise is the food some classic (steaks, club sandwiches) but other dishes quite contemporary: an Asian ahi tuna tower; a lavish candied-walnut, poached-pear, grilled chicken salad; and fresh pasta specials. Prices are phenomenal, with dinner entres $9 to $17; drinks average $3 to $4. $$ PizzaFiore9540 NE 2nd Ave., 305-754-1924Owned by Arcoub Abderrahim, who opened South Beachs original PizzaFiore way back in 1996, this caf serves the kind of nostalgic, medium-thin crusted, oozing-with-gooey-cheese pizzas reminiscent of our childhood pies in northern NJ Sopranos territory, except now there are options for todays toppings -sundried tomatoes, buffalo mozzarella, etc. But theres also a full menu of Italian-American classics, including antipasto salads, subs, and particularly popular, pastas. Garlic rolls are a must, but we didnt have to tell you that. $-$$NORTH MIAMIAlaska Coffee Roasting Co.13130 Biscayne Blvd., 786-332-4254When people speak of the West Coast as the USAs quality coffeehouse pioneer territory, theyre thinking Seattle -and then south through coastal California. North to Alaska? Not so much. But owner Michael Gesser did indeed open this hip places parent in Fairbanks back in 1993, after years of traveling through every coffeegrowing country in the world. Brews like signature smooth yet exotic Ethiopian Yirgacheffe dont even need cream or sugar, much less frappe frou-frou. All beans are house-roasted. Theres solid food, too: brick-oven pizzas, salads, sandwiches, and pastries. $-$$ Bagel Bar East1990 NE 123rd St., 305-895-7022Crusty outside (even without toasting) and substantially chewy inside, the bagels here are the sort homesick ex-New Yorkers always moan are impossible to find in Miami. For those who pre fer puffed-up, pillowy bagels? Forget it. Have a nice onion pocket. Theres also a full menu of authentic Jewish deli specialties, including especially delicious, custom-cut -not pre-sliced -nova or lox. Super size sandwiches easily serve two, and theyll even improvise a real NJ Sloppy Joe (two meats, Swiss, coleslaw, and Russian dressing on rye) if you ask nice. $$Bagels & Co.11064 Biscayne Blvd., 305-892-2435While this place is often referred to as Guns & Bagels, one cant actually buy a gun here. The nickname refers to its location next to a firearms shop. But theres a lot of other stuff aside from bagels here, including a full range of sandwiches and wraps. Breakfast time is busy time, with banana-walnut pancakes especially popular. But whats most important is that this is one of the areas few sources of the real, New York-style water bagel: crunchy outside, challengingly chewy inside. $Bulldog Barbecue/Bulldog Burger15400 Biscayne Blvd., 305-940-9655These adjacent restaurants are really one place with two dining areas, since they connect and diners can order from either menu. They also share a BBQ/burger master: Top Chef contender Howie Kleinberg, whose indoor electric smoker produces mild-tasting cue ranging from the expected pulled pork, ribs, brisket, and chicken to more unusual items like hot-smoked salmon. As for burgers, many feature unique ingredients such as mayo flavored like redeye gravy, with strong coffee, or the bun of the infamous Luther: a sweet-glazed mock (holeless) Krispy Kreme donut. Costs are comparatively high, but such is the price of fame. $$-$$$Cane Sucre899 NE 125th St.,305-891-0123From the Vega brothers (who pioneered the Design and MiMo districts with, respectively, the original Cane A Sucre and UVA 69), this charming artisanal sandwich bar is the perfect breakfast/ lunch stop before or after ingesting visual arts at nearby MOMA. Actually, creations like El Fig (fig confit, gorgonzola cheese, walnuts, and honey on an authentically French crisp-crusted freshbaked baguette) are art in their own right. Inventive, substantial salads, sides, daily soups, and homemade sweets (including mouthwateringly buttery croissants) complete the menu. $-$$ Captain Jims Seafood12950 W. Dixie Hwy., 305-892-2812This market/restaurant was garnering critical acclaim even when eat-in dining was confined to a few Formica tables in front of the fish counter, owing to the freshness of its seafood, much of it from Capt. Jim Hansons own fishing boats, which supply many top restaurants. Now theres a casual but pleasantly nautical side dining room with booths. Whether its garlicky scampi, smoked-fish dip, grilled yellowtail or hog or mutton snapper, perfectly tenderized cracked conch or conch fritters, everything is deftly prepared and bargain-priced. $$ Caminito Way1960 NE 123rd St., 305-893-8322Open since 1999, this bakery-caf is particularly known for its European-influenced homemade Argentine pastries. So come early to pick from the widest variety of savory empanadas (plumply stuffed and admirably delicate -no leaden crusts here) or sweet facturas (Argentinas most popular breakfast items). They sell out fast. What some might not know is that despite its small size, Caminitos also crafts tasty big food: elaborate salads; hefty baguette sandwiches, like choripan sausage with chimichurri; pastas; major meat or poultry entres. For lighter lunches, try tartas (quiches), also perfect party food. $-$$Casa Mia Trattoria 1950 NE 123rd St., 305-899-2770Tucked away, off to the side on the approach to the Broad Causeway and the beaches, this charming indoor/outdoor trattoria seems to attract mostly neighborhood regulars. But even newcomers feel like regulars after a few minutes, thanks to the staffs Italian ebullience. Menu offerings are mostly classic comfort foods with some contemporary items as well. Housemade pastas are good enough that low-carb dieters should take a break, especially for the tender gnocchi with pesto or better yet, delicate fagottini beggars purses stuffed with pears and cheese. $$Chen-huyae15400 Biscayne Blvd., 305-956-2808Diners can get some Tex-Mex dishes here, if they must. But the specialty is Mayan-rooted Yucatan cuisine. So why blow bucks on burritos when one can sample Caribbean Mexicos most typical dish: cochinita pibil? Chens authentically succulent version of the pickle-onion-topped marinated pork dish is earthily aromatic from achiote, tangy from bitter oranges, and meltingly tender from slow cooking in a banana leaf wrap. To accompany, try a lime/soy/chili-spiced michelada, also authentically Mexican, and possibly the best thing that ever happened to dark beer. $$-$$$Evios Pizza & Grill12600 Biscayne Blvd., 305-899-7699Family-owned and operated, this indoor/outdoor pizzeria is also family-friendly, right down to the size of its NY-style pies (sold whole or by the slice), which range from large to roughly the diameter of a ferris wheel. And toppings, ranging from meat-lovers to veggie-loaded, are applied with awe-inspiring abundance. Since tastes do vary, the menu also includes a cornucopia of other crowd-pleasers: burgers (including turkey with a unique mustard-spiked cranberry sauce), entre-size salads, burritos or quesadillas, wings, hot or cold subs and succulent self-basted lamb/beef gyros with tzatziki. $ *Must present all coupons. Not valid with other offers. Tax not included. ** ORDER ONLINE www.sumosushibar.com **(Delivery charge Call for delivery area) TEL:305-754-8002 www.schnitzelhausmiami.com1085 N.E. 79th Street / Causeway, Miami, FL 33138ORIGINAL BAVARIANBIER GARTENOPENDAILYFROM5:00PMTO11:00PMFRIDAY& SATURDAYTOMIDNIGHT

PAGE 87

Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT S Fish Fish13488 Biscayne Blvd., 786-732-3124Heres what makes this elegantly warm restolounge and seafood market not just an irresistible neighborhood draw but a worththe-drive dining destination: Both local and cold-water fish and shellfish, including stone crab and lobster from owners Melvyn Franks and Rebecca Nachlass own Florida Keys plant, that are always fresh, never frozen (except some shrimp). For home cooks, the market offers all delivered-daily catches on the menu. But dont miss chef Oscar Quezadas simple and perfect preparations, including lightly battered, crispy tempura shrimp; sophisticated fish and chips (featuring Atlantic cod, not cheapo fish); bracing ceviches; and, for carnivores, shepherds pie topped with ethereal whipped potatoes. $$-$$$$Flip Burger Bar1699 NE 123rd St., 305-741-3547 Casual-chic burger bars, everywhere in South Beach, are still rare farther north. One reason this easy-to-miss venue is a must-notmiss for North Miami locals: The hefty half-pounders on fresh brioche buns include a scrumptious patty with Gruyere, mushrooms, and onion marmalade. The Fireman is a jalapeo/chipotle scorcher. There are even turkey and veggie variations. Other draws are hand-cut fries, beer-battered onion rings, a top-drawer beer list, budget-priced combo specials, conversation-friendly acoustics, and a South Beach rarity: free parking. $-$$Giraffas1821 NE 123rd St., 786-866-9007Festooned with eye-poppingly colored panels and giraffes -subtler but everywhere -this first North American branch of a wildly popular, 30-year-old Brazilian fast/casual chain is the flagship of a planned 4000 U.S. Giraffas. Given that the steaks, especially the tender, flavorful picanha, rival those at the most upscale rodizio joints -and beat the sword-wielding grandstanders for custom cooking (because staff asks your preference) -wed bet on giraffe domination. Overstuffed grilled sandwiches, salads, even tasty veggie options are all here, too. The cheese bread is a must. $$Happy Sushi & Thai2224 NE 123rd St., 305-895-0165Grab a booth at this cozy eatery, which serves all the expected Thai and sushi bar standards, including weekday lunch specials. But there are also delightful surprises, like grilled kawahagi (triggerfish) with seasoned Japanese mayonnaise. This intensely savory/sweet Japanese home cooking treat satisfies the same yen as beef jerky, except without pulling out your teeth. Accompanied by a bowl of rice, its a superb lunch. For raw-fish fans, spicy, creamy salmon tartare (accompanied by hiyashi wakame seaweed) is a winner. $$-$$$ Here Comes the Sun2188 NE 123rd St., 305-893-5711At this friendly natural foods establishment, one of Miamis first, theres a full stock of vitamins and nutritional supplements. But the places hearty soups, large variety of entres (including fresh fish and chicken as well as vegetarian selections), lighter bites like miso burgers with secret sun sauce (which would probably make old sneakers taste good), and daily specials are a tastier way to get healthy. An under-ten-buck early-bird dinner is popular with the former long-hair, now blue-hair, crowd. Frozen yogurt, fresh juices, and smoothies complete the menu. $-$$Il Piccolo Caf2112 NE 123rd St., 305-893-6538Talk about a neighborhood institution. The owners of this longtime Italian eatery remember frequent visits from Miami native Michelle Bernstein and her parents -when the celeb chef was a kid. The piccolo space has since expanded, but the place is still child-friendly, and portions are still prodigious. Most dishes evoke nostalgia, including our favorite white wine/lemon saucedrenched veal piccata with capers and artichokes. There are surprises not found at old school red-sauce joints, too, like lunchtimes surprisingly tasty Cuban sandwich. $$Little Havana 12727 Biscayne Blvd., 305-899-9069In addition to white-tablecoth ambiance, this place features live Latin entertainment and dancing, making it a good choice when diners want a night out, not just a meal. Its also a good choice for diners who dont speak Spanish, but dont worry about authenticity. Classic Cuban home-style dishes like mojo-marinated lechon asado, topped with onions, and juicy ropa vieja are translated on the menu, not the plate, and fancier creations like pork filet in tangy tamarind sauce seem universal crowd-pleasers. $$$Kings Chef476 NE 125th St., 305-895-7878While authentic Chinese fine dining fare is best eaten fresh from the wok, Chinese take-out is almost a separate genre with its own standards -prime being how its tantalizing scent fills the inside of your car. Even basic bargain-priced Szechuan beef combination platters from this humble establishment do that so well, youll find yourself taking the long way home. There are surprises one wouldnt expect, too, including a wide variety of tasty tofu dishes -spicy ma po, General Tso-style, honey garlic, many more -and other savory vegetarian treats. $-$$ Mama Jennies11720 NE 2nd Ave., 305-757-3627For more than 35 years this beloved red-sauce joint has been drawing students and other starvation-budget diners with pro digious portions of lasagna, spaghetti and meatballs (the latter savory yet light-textured), veal marsala topped with a mountain of mushrooms, and other Italian-American belly-busters. All pasta or meat entres come with oil-drenched garlic rolls and either soup (hearty minestrone) or a salad (mixed greens, tomatoes, cukes, brined olives, and pickled peppers) thats a dinner in itself. Rustic roadhouse ambiance, notably the red leatherette booths, add to Mamas charm. $-$$Pastry Is Art12591 Biscayne Blvd., 305-640-5045Given owner Jenny Rissones background as the Eden Rocs executive pastry chef, its not surprising that her cakes and other sweet treats (like creamy one-bite truffle lollipops) look as flawlessly sophisticated as they taste -perfect adult party fare. What the bakerys name doesnt reveal is that its also a breakfast and lunch caf, with unusual baking-oriented fare: a signature sandwich of chicken, brie, and caramelized peaches and pecans on housemade bread; quiches; pot pies; even a baked-to-order Grand Marnier souffl. The pecan sticky buns are irresistible. $$ Petit Rouge12409 Biscayne Blvd., 305-892-7676From the mid-1990s (with Neals Restaurant and later with Il Migliore), local chef Neal Coopers neighborhood-oriented Italian eateries have been crowd-pleasers. While this cute 32-seat charmer is French, its no exception, avoiding pretense and winning fans with both classic and nouvelle bistro fare: frise salad with lardons, poached egg, and bacon vinaigrette; truite Grenobloise (trout with lemon/caper sauce); consomm with black truffles and foie gras, covered by a buttery puff pastry dome; perfect pommes frites, and equally perfect apple or lemon tarts for dessert. $$$Piccolo Pizza2104 NE 123rd St., 305-893-9550Pizzas at this spin-off from family-owned Il Piccolo impress even NYC visitors, thanks to recipes proprietor Hubert Benmoussa learned from an authentic Neapolitan pizzaolo. Other favorites here include subs on homemade baguettes and, surprising for a pizzeria, delightfully custardy quiche (Benmoussa is part French). But it would be unthinkable to miss the pies, especially our favorite Italia: subtly sweet tomato sauce, fresh tomatoes, mozzarella, onions, plus mixed greens and uncooked prosciutto on top -both pizza and salad. There are also nicely priced catering trays of finger subs, quiche squares, pizza bites, more. $-$$ Rice House of Kabob14480 Biscayne Blvd., 305-944-4899Since 2006, South Beachs original Rice House has been serving up mountainous platters of basmati rice and Greek salad topped with Persian-style marinated/char-grilled meat, poultry, seafood, or veggie kabobs -for very little money. This branch of what is now a growing chain has the same menu (which also features wraps, for lighter eaters) and the same policy of custom-cooking kabobs, so expect fresh, not fast, food. Sides of must-o-keyar and must-o-mooseer (thick yogurt dips with herbed cukes or shallots) are must-haves. $$ Steves Pizza12101 Biscayne Blvd., 305-891-0202At the end of a debauched night of excess, some paper-thin designer pizza with wisps of smoked salmon (or similar fluff) doesnt do the trick. Open till 3:00 or 4:00 a.m., Steves has, since 1974, been serving the kind of comforting, retro pizzas people crave at that hour. As in Brooklyn, tomato sauce is sweet, with strong oregano flavor. Mozzarella is applied with abandon. Toppings are stuff that give strength: pepperoni, sausage, meatballs, onions, and peppers. $Tiny Thai House12953 Biscayne Blvd., 305-895-1646The space is tiny. The menu, which features Thai specialties but includes sushi plus Japanese appetizers and entres, is not. Despite the huge selection of sushi/Thai restaurant standards, though, dont overlook items harder to find in America, like floating noodle soup, a popular street food from Thailands boatbased market stalls; similar in savor to Vietnamese pho, the dish contains beef, bean sprouts, and noodles heaped in umami-rich beef broth. Among the nicely priced sushi selections, the Mylo roll (tuna, salmon, crab, avocado, and cuke, topped with tempura fish and eel sauce) is a tasty pick. Dont miss sticky rice with mango for dessert. $NORTH MIAMI BEACHBlue Marlin Fish House 2500 NE 163rd St., 305-957-8822Located inside Oleta River State Park, this casual outdoor eatery is a rare surprise for nature lovers. The featured item is still the rrfrnfttb t t f bbbn bnfntt b bb bnfnn btnnn bbt bnrfrb NOW OPEN 7 DAYS FROM 11AM PARTY WITH US FRI & SAT till 2AM Lunch, Dinner & Happy Hour Specials DAILY

PAGE 88

88 Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT S house-smoked fish this historic venue began producing in 1938, available in three varieties: salmon, mahi mahi, and the signature blue marlin. But the smokehouse now also turns out ribs and delectable brisket. Other new additions include weekend fish fries. Entry is directly from 163rd Street, not through the main park entrance. No admission fee. $ Chef Rolfs Tunas Seafood Restaurant17850 W. Dixie Hwy., 305-932-0630 Known for decades as simply Tunas, this indoor/outdoor eatery, combining a casual vibe with some surprisingly sophisticated food, now has a name recognizing the culinary refinements introduced by Rolf Fellhauer, for 28 years executive chef at Continental fine-dining spot La Paloma. Additions to the predominantly seafood menu include chateaubriand or rack of lamb for two, both carved, with old-school spectacle, tableside. Owner Michael Choido has also renovated the interior dining room, and added the Yellowfin Lounge, which features an extensive selection of artisan beers. $$-$$$ Cholos Ceviche & Grill1127 NE 163rd St., 305-947-3338Dont be misled by the mini-mall location, or the relatively minimal prices (especially during lunch, when specials are under $6). Inside, the dcor is charming, and the Peruvian plates elegant in both preparation and presentation. Tops among ceviches/tiraditos is the signature Cholos, marinated octopus and fish in a refined rocoto chili sauce with overtones both fiery and fruity. And dont miss the molded causas, whipped potato rings stuffed with avocado-garnished crab salad -altogether lighter and lovelier than the tasty but oily mashed spud constructions more oft encountered in town. $-$$Christines Roti Shop16721 NE 6th Ave., 305-770-0434Wraps are for wimps. At this small shop run by Christine Gouvela, originally from British Guyana, the wrapper is a far more substantial and tasty roti, a Caribbean mega-crepe made from chickpea flour. Most popular filling for the flatbread is probably jerk chicken, bone-in pieces in a spiced stew of potatoes, cabbage, carrots, onions, and more chickpeas. But there are about a dozen other curries from which to choose. Take-out packages of plain roti are also available; they transform myriad leftovers into tasty, portable lunches. $ Duffys Sports Grill Intracoastal Mall3969 NE 163rd St., 305-760-2124Located in a sprawling indoor/outdoor space at the Intracoastal Mall, Duffys, part of a popular chain that identifies as the official sports grill of every major Miami team, features roughly a zillion TVs and an equally mega-size menu of accessibly Americanized, globally inspired dishes designed to please crowds: stuffed potato skins, crab Rangoon, coconut-crusted fish fingers with orange-ginger sauce, jumbo wings of many flavors. Imagine a sports-oriented Cheesecake Factory. What makes this particular Duffys different and better? Location, location, location -fronting the Intracoastal Waterway. Theres even a swimming pool with its own bar. $$-$$$ Empire Szechuan Gourmet of NY3427 NE 163rd St., 305-949-3318In the 1980s, Empire became the Chinese chain that swallowed Manhattan -and transformed public perceptions of Chinese food in the NY metropolitan area. Before: bland faux-Cantonese dishes. After: lighter, more fiery fare from Szechuan and other provinces. This Miami outpost does serve chop suey and other Americanized items, but dont worry. Stick with Szechuan crispy prawns, Empires Special Duck, cold sesame noodles, or similar pleasantly spicy specialties, and youll be a happy camper, espe cially if youre an ex-New Yorker. $$ El Gran Inka3155 NE 163rd St., 305-940-4910Though diners at this upscale Peruvian eatery will find ceviches, a hefty fried-seafood jalea, and Perus other expected traditional specialties, all presented far more elegantly than most in town, the contemporary Peruvian fusion creations are unique. Especially recommended are two dishes adapted from recipes by Perus influential nikkei (Japanese/Creole) chef Rosita Yimura: an exquisite, delicately sauced tiradito de corvina, and for those with no fear of cholesterol, pulpo de oliva (octopus topped with rich olive sauce). $$$-$$$$ Hannas Gourmet Diner13951 Biscayne Blvd., 305-947-2255When Sia and Nicole Hemmati bought the Gourmet Diner from retiring original owner Jean-Pierre Lejeune in the late 1990s, they added Hannas to the name, but changed little else about this retro-looking French/American diner, a north Miami-Dade institu tion since 1983. Customers can get a cheeseburger or garlicky escargots, meatloaf in tomato sauce or boeuf bourguignon in red wine sauce, iceberg lettuce and tomatoes, or a mushroom and squid salad with garlic dressing. For oysters Rockefeller/tunamelt couples from Venus and Mars, it remains the ideal dinner date destination. $$-$$$ Hiro Japanese Restaurant3007 NE 163rd St., 305-948-3687One of Miamis first sushi restaurants, Hiro retains an amusing retro-glam feel, an extensive menu of both sushi and cooked Japanese food, and late hours that make it a perennially popular after-hours snack stop. The sushi menu has few surprises, but quality is reliable. Most exceptional are the nicely priced yakitori, skewers of succulently soy-glazed and grilled meat, fish, and vegetables; the unusually large variety available of the last makes this place a good choice for vegetarians. $$ Hiros Sushi Express17048 W. Dixie Hwy., 305-949-0776Tiny, true, but theres more than just sushi at this mostly take-out spin-off of the pioneering Hiro. Makis are the mainstay (standard stuff like California rolls, more complex creations like multi-veg futo maki, and a few unexpected treats like a spicy Crunch & Caliente maki), available la carte or in value-priced individual and party combo platters. But there are also bento boxes featuring tempura, yakitori skewers, teriyaki, stir-fried veggies, and udon noodles. Another branch is now open in Miamis Upper Eastside. $Heelsha1550 NE 164th St., 305-919-8393If unusual Bangladeshi dishes like fiery pumpkin patey (cooked with onion, green pepper, and pickled mango) or Heelsha curry (succulently spiced hilsa, Bangladeshs sweet-fleshed national fish) seem familiar, its because chef/owner Bithi Begum and her husband Tipu Raman once served such fare at the critically acclaimed Renaisa. Their menus mix-and-match option allows diners to pair their choice of meat, poultry, fish, or vegetable with more than a dozen regional sauces, from familiar Indian styles to exotica like satkara, flavored with a Bangladeshi citrus reminiscent of sour orange. $$-$$$Julios Natural Foods Emporium1602 NE Miami Gardens Dr., 305-947-4744Vegetarians and vegans tired of settling for the one sad steamed vegetable entre tacked onto most menus will be in in pork-free pig heaven. Owner Julio Valderramas healthy global (though mostly Mediterranean, Mexican, and New American) menu of not-so-small plates, salads, sandwiches/wraps, and organic grain-based platters is so immense you could literally eat for months without repeating -or indulging in poultry and fish dishes. Cooking isnt cutting-edge, but unusual spicing keeps things interesting. Especially recommended: a signature veg-and-fetapacked zaatar flatbread; also slightly sinful sweet potato with butter and cinnamon. $-$$ Kebab Indian Restaurant514 NE 167th St., 305-940-6309Since the 1980s this restaurant, located in an unatmospheric mini strip mall but surprisingly romantic inside (especially if you grab one of the exotically draped booths) has been a popular destination for reasonably priced north Indian fare. Kormas are properly soothing and vindaloos are satisfactorily searing, but the kitchen will adjust seasonings upon request. They aim to please. Food arrives unusually fast for an Indian eatery, too. $$Kings County Pizza18228 W. Dixie Hwy., 305-792-9455If your feelings about Brooklyn-style pizza have been formed by Dominos flopsy-crusted, ketchupy, cheesefoody pies, stop here to sample a slice of the real thing. Admittedly, the crusts are not those of the coal-fired classics from Brooklyns legendary Totonnos or Grimaldis, but theyre similarly medium-thin and crisp -though not like a cracker; you can fold them for neat street eating, and they taste like honest bread, not cardboard. A variety of toppings are available even on slices. There are also whole pies with varied toppings. The large is humongous. $-$$ KoneFood387 NE 167th St., 305-705-4485Cones contain ice cream. Kones, however, contain anything and everything edible -at least at this eatery, locally founded (though the original concept of ultimate portable convenience meals, in sealed flatbread cones, came from Italy). In their melting-pot American version, kone fillings range from breakfast items like huevos rancheros to Thai chicken, chicken curry, coconut shrimp, kones kon lechon (slow-roasted pork with mojo), various pizzas, BBQ, chicken Florentine, healthy green salads, more. There are even desserts like a flambed apple Kone la Normande. Authentic Belgian frites, too. $ Laurenzos Market Caf16385 W. Dixie Hwy., 305-945-6381Its just a small area between the wines and the fridge counters no potted palms, and next-to-no service in this cafeteria-style space. But when negotiating this international gourmet markets packed shelves and crowds has depleted your energies, its a handy place to refuel with eggplant parmesan and similar ItalianAmerican classics, housemade from old family recipes. Just a few spoonfuls of Wednesdays hearty pasta fagiole, one of the daily soup specials, could keep a person shopping for hours. And now that pizza master Carlo is manning the wood-fired oven, you can sample the thinnest, crispiest pies outside Napoli. $-$$Lime Fresh Mexican Grill14831 Biscayne Blvd., 305-949-8800 www.limefreshmexicangrill.comLike its downtown and Midtown siblings, this Lime Fresh serves up carefully crafted Tex-Mex food. The concept is fast casual rather than fast food meaning nice enough for a night out. It also means ingredients are always fresh. Seafood tacos are about as exotic as the menu gets, but the mahi mahi for fish tacos comes from a local supplier, and salsas are housemade daily. Niceties include low-carb tortillas and many Mexican beers. $Little Saigon16752 N. Miami Ave., 305-653-3377This is Miamis oldest traditional Vietnamese restaurant, but its still packed most weekend nights. So even the places biggest negative its hole-in-the-wall atmosphere, not encouraging of lingering visits becomes a plus since it ensures fast turnover. Chef/owner Lily Tao is typically in the kitchen, crafting green papaya salad, flavorful beef noodle pho (served with greens, herbs, and condiments that make it not just a soup but a whole ceremony), and many other Vietnamese classics. The menu is humongous. $-$$The Melting Pot15700 Biscayne Blvd., 305-947-2228 For 1950s and 1960s college students, fondue pots were standard dorm accessories. These days, however, branches of this chain are generally the only places to go for this eating experience. Start with a wine-enriched four-cheese fondue; proceed to an entre with meat or seafood, plus choice of cooking potion (herbed wine, bouillon, or oil); finish with fruits and cakes dipped in melted chocolate. Fondue etiquette dictates that diners who drop a skewer in the pot must kiss all other table companions, so go with those you love. $$$Oishi Thai14841 Biscayne Blvd., 305-947-4338 At this stylish Thai/sushi spot, try the menu of specials, many of which clearly reflect the young chefs fanatical devotion to fresh fish, as well as the time he spent in the kitchen of Knob: broiled miso-marinated black cod; rock shrimp tempura with creamy

PAGE 89

Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT S sauce; even Nobu Matsuhisas new style sashimi (slightly sur face-seared by drizzles of hot olive and sesame oil). The specials menu includes some Thai-inspired creations, too, such as veal massaman curry, Chilean sea bass curry, and sizzling filet mignon with basil sauce. $$$-$$$$Panya Thai520 NE 167th St., 305-945-8566Unlike authentic Chinese cuisine, theres no shortage of genu ine Thai food in and around Miami. But Panyas chef/owner, a Bangkok native, offers numerous regional and/or rare dishes not found elsewhere. Plus he doesnt automatically curtail the heat or sweetness levels to please Americans. Among the most intriguing: moo khem phad wan (chewy deep-fried seasoned pork strips with fiery tamarind dip, accompanied by crisp green papaya salad); broad rice noodles stir-fried with eye-opening chili/garlic sauce and fresh Thai basil; and chili-topped Diamond Duck in tangy tamarind sauce. $$-$$$ Paquitos16265 Biscayne Blvd., 305-947-5027From the outside, this strip-mall Mexican eatery couldnt be easier to overlook. Inside, however, its festivity is impossible to resist. Every inch of wall space seems to be covered with South of the Border knickknacks. And if the kitschy dcor alone doesnt cheer you, the quickly arriving basket of fresh (not packaged) taco chips, or the mariachi band, or the knockout margaritas will. Food ranges from Tex-Mex burritos and a party-size fajita platter to authentic Mexican moles and harder-to-find traditional preparations like albndigas spicy, ultra-savory meatballs. $$-$$$Sangs Chinese Restaurant1925 NE 163rd St., 305-947-7076Sangs has three menus. The pink menu is Americanized Chinese food, from chop suey to honey garlic chicken. The white menu permits the chef to show off his authentic Chinese fare: salt and pepper prawns, rich beef/turnip casserole, tender salt-baked chicken, even esoterica like abalone with sea cucumber. The extensive third menu offers dim sum, served until 4:00 p.m. A live tank allows seasonal seafood dishes like lobster with ginger and scallion. Recently installed: a Chinese barbecue case, displaying savory items like crispy pork with crackling attached. $$$Shing Wang Vegetarian, Icee & Tea House 237 NE 167th St., 305-654-4008At this unique, mostly Taiwanese eatery, all seafood, poultry, and meats used to be skillfully crafted and delicious vegetarian imitations. These are still here, plus theres now a wider choice of dishes, some featuring real meat. Try the authentic-tasting Vietnamese banh mi sandwiches (available with a variety of meat and mock-meat fillings). Bubble tea is the must-not-miss drink. The cold, refreshing boba comes in numerous flavors, all supplemented with signature black tapioca balls that, sipped through straws, are a guaranteed giggle. $Siam Square54 NE 167th St., 305-944-9697Open until 1:00 a.m. every day except Sunday (when is closes at midnight), this relatively new addition to North Miami Beachs Chinatown strip has become a popular late-night gathering spot for chefs from other Asian restaurants. And why not? The food is fresh, nicely presented, and reasonably priced. The kitchen staff is willing to customize dishes upon request, and the serving staff is reliably fast. Perhaps most important, karaoke equipment is in place when the mood strikes. $-$$Soprano Caf3933 NE 163rd St., 855-434-9035Sicilian native Rocco Soprano, original proprietor of South Beachs Sopranos, has transformed this Intracoastal Waterway space, formerly the enoteca Racks, into an elegant but familyfriendly restaurant featuring classic Italian dishes plus steakhouse fare, all in prodigious portions. For an ultimate Miamian/ Italian fusion experience, arrive by boat at Sopranos dock, grab a table on the water-view deck, and enjoy a coal-oven pizza -perhaps the famous truffled white pizza, or our personal fave secchi: sopressata salami, zesty tomato sauce, provolone, goat cheese, and fresh fior di latte mozzarella. $$$ Sushi House15911 Biscayne Blvd., 305-947-6002In terms of dcor drama, this sushi spot seems to have taken its cue from Philippe Starck: sheer floor-to-ceiling drapes, for starters. The sushi list, too, is over the top, featuring monster makis like the Cubbie Comfort: spicy tuna, soft-shell crab, shrimp and eel tempura, plus avocado, jalapeos, and cilantro, topped with not one but three sauces: wasabi, teriyaki, and spicy Mayo. Hawaiian King Crab contains unprecedented ingredients like tomatoes, green peppers, and pineapple. Boutique wines, artisan sakes, and cocktails are as exotic as the cuisine. $$$-$$$$Sushi Sake13551 Biscayne Blvd., 305-947-4242Chic Asian-accented dcor, video screens, 99-cent drink deals, and late-night hours make this hip hangout not just a sushi bar but sort of a neighborhood bar, too. That said, the sushi is impressive, mainly because seafood is delivered daily and all except the shrimp is fresh, not frozen (as is customary at most Miami sushi places). Also notable: All sauces are housemade. Cooked makis like a crunch-topped Miami Heat are most popu lar, but its as sashimi that the fishs freshness truly shines. $$-$$$ Tanias Table18685 W. Dixie Hwy., 305-932-9425A location at the tail end of a tiny, tired-looking strip mall makes this weekday lunch-only kosher eatery easy to miss. But the cute bistro, an extension of chef Tania Sigals catering company, is well worth seeking for its unusually varied daily-changing menus -not just familiar Eastern European-derived dishes (chicken matzoh ball soup, blintzes, etc.) but numerous Latin American spe cialties (zesty ropa vieja), Asian-influenced items (Thai chicken/ noodle salad), lightened universal Ladies-Who-Lunch classics (custardy quiches, grilled trout with mustard sauce), and home made baked goods. $$ Vegetarian Restaurant by Hakin73 NE 167th St., 305-405-6346Too often purist vegetarian food is unskillfully crafted bland stuff, spiced with little but sanctimonious intent. Not at this modestlooking vegan (dairy-free vegetarian) restaurant and smoothie bar. Dishes from breakfasts blueberry-packed pancakes to Caribbean vegetable stews sparkle with vivid flavors. Especially impressive: mock meat (and fake fish) wheat-gluten items that beat many carnivorous competitors. Skeptical? Rightly. But we taste-tested a Philly cheese steak sandwich on the toughest of critics -an inflexibly burger-crazy six year-old. She cleaned her plate. $$Yakko-San3881 NE 163rd. St. (Intracoastal Mall), 305-947-0064After sushi chefs close up their own restaurants for the night, many come here for a rare taste of Japanese home cooking, served in grazing portions. Try glistening-fresh strips of raw tuna can be had in maguro nuta mixed with scallions and dressed with habit-forming honey-miso mustard sauce. Other favorites include goma ae (wilted spinach, chilled and dressed in sesame sauce), garlic stem and beef (mild young shoots flash-fried with tender steak bits), or perhaps just-caught grouper with hot/ sweet/tangy chili sauce. Open till around 3:00 a.m. $$BAY HARBOR ISLANDSAsia Bay Bistro1007 Kane Concourse, 305-861-2222As in Japans most refined restaurants, artful presentation is stunning at this Japanese/Thai gem. And though the voluminous menu sports all the familiar favorites from both nations, the Japanese-inspired small plates will please diners seeking something different. Try jalapeo-sauced hamachi sashimi; toro with enoki mushrooms, bracing ooba (shiso), tobiko caviar, and a sauce almost like beurre blanc; rock shrimp/shitake tempura with a delicate salad; elegant salmon tartare with a mix-in quail egg. And spicy, mayo-dressed tuna rock makis are universal crowd-pleasers. $$$ Bay Harbor Bistro1023 Kane Concourse, 305-866-0404Though small, this ambitious European/American fusion bistro covers all the bases, from smoked salmon eggs Florentine at breakfast and elaborate lunch salads to steak frites at dinner, plus tapas. As well as familiar fare, youll find atypical creations: caramelized onion and goat cheese-garnished leg of lamb sandwiches; a layered crab/ avocado tortino; pistachio-crusted salmon. A welcome surprise: The bistro is also a bakery, so dont overlook the mouthwateringly buttery croissants, plumply stuffed empanadas, or elegant berry tarts and other homemade French pastries. $$-$$$Bettos Ristorante Italiano1009 Kane Concourse, 305-861-8166After roughly 25 years as Caffe Da Vinci, this romantic remodeled, renamed space is now managed by Betto Di Carlo, also a 25-year Italian cuisine veteran (as former owner/effusively charming host of Surfsides neighborhood favorite Caf Ragazzi). Best make reservations. Though off the tourist track, the place draws hungry hordes for homemade pastas like pappardelle ai porcini (toothsome wide noodles with fresh mushrooms). Veal piccata, lightly floured and sau ted medaillons with a caper-studded lemon white wine sauce, and thicker mozzarella-stuffed chops are also popular. $$$ Le Pine1052 Kane Concourse, 305-861-1059This upscale Lebanese restaurant serves dishes with the sort of understated sophistication that makes clear why Beirut was called the Paris of the East. Youll find familiar Middle Eastern favorites, but many have refinements that lift them above aver age: pita thats housemade, charmingly fluffy when warm from the oven; falafel incorporating flavorful fava beans with the usual ground chickpeas. Especially appealing are more uncommon items like crisp-fried cauliflower with tahini, fateh (a chickpea casserole iced with thick yogurt), and buttery cheese/herb-filled sambusak pastries. Finish exotically with a hookah. $$-$$$ Open Kitchen1071 95th St., 305-865-0090If we were on Death Row, choosing a last meal, this very chefcentered lunchroom/markets PBLT (a BLT sandwich with meltin-your-mouth pork belly substituting for regular bacon) would be a strong contender. Co-owners Sandra Stefani (ex-Casa Toscana chef/owner) and Ines Chattas (ex-Icebox Caf GM) have combined their backgrounds to create a global gourmet oasis with a menu ranging from light quiches and imaginative salads to hefty balsamic/tomato-glazed shortribs or daily pasta specials (like wild boar-stuffed ravioli). Also featured: artisan grocery products, and Stefanis famous interactive cooking class/wine dinners. $$-$$$ The Palm9650 E. Bay Harbor Dr., 305-868-7256It was 1930s journalists, legend has it, who transformed NYCs original Palm from Italian restaurant to bastion of beef. Owners would run out to the butcher for huge steaks to satisfy the hardboiled scribes. So our perennial pick here is nostalgic: steak la stone -juicy, butter-doused slices on toast, topped with sauted onions and pimentos. This classic (whose carb components make it satisfying without la carte sides, and hence a relative bargain) isnt on the menu anymore, but cooks will prepare it on request. $$$$$AVENTURA / HALLANDALEAnthonys Coal Fired Pizza17901 Biscayne Blvd., 305-830-2625When people rave about New York pizzas superiority, they dont just mean thin crusts. They mean the kind of airy, abundantly burn-bubbled, uniquely flavorful crusts that can only be consistently produced by a traditional coal (not wood) oven -like those at Anthonys, which began with one Fort Lauderdale pizzeria in

PAGE 90

90 Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT S2002 and now has roughly 30 locations. Quality toppings, though limited, hit all the major food groups, from prosciutto to kalamata olives. There are salads, too, but the sausage and garlicsauted broccoli rabe pie is a tastier green vegetable. $$Bagel Cove Restaurant & Deli19003 Biscayne Blvd. 305-935-4029One word: flagels. And no, thats not a typo. Rather these crusty, flattened specimens (poppy seed or sesame seed) are the ultimate bagel/soft pretzel hybrid -and a specialty at this bustling Jewish bakery/deli, which, since 1988, opens at 6:30 a.m. -typically selling out of flagels in a couple of hours. Since youre up early anyway, sample elaborately garnished breakfast specials, including unusually flavorful homemade corned beef hash and eggs. For the rest of the day, multitudes of mavens devour every other delectable deli specialty known to humankind. $$BagelWorks18729 Biscayne Blvd., 305-937-7727Hard as it is for old-time NYC expats to believe, theres evidently a younger generation that doesnt equate the Jewish deli experience with loudmouthed servers and the smell of 75 years of fermenting pickle juice in the flooring. This cleanly contemporary place attracts this younger generation with the full range of classics, including many varieties of hand-sliced smoked fish, but also healthy options, most notably a wide array of substantial salads with grilled protein add-ons. Bagels, while machine-made rather than hand-rolled, are freshly baked all day. $$ Bourbon Steak 19999 W. Country Club Dr., 786-279-0658 (Fairmont Hotel, Turnberry Resort)At Bourbon Steak, a venture in the exploding restaurant empire of chef Michael Mina, a multiple James Beard award winner, steakhouse fare is just where the fare starts. There are also Minas inge nious signature dishes, like an elegant deconstructed lobster/baby vegetable pot pie, a raw bar, and enough delectable vegetable/seafood starters and sides for noncarnivores to assemble a happy meal. But dont neglect the steak flavorful dry-aged Angus, 100-percent Wagyu American Kobe, swoonworthy grade A5 Japanese Kobe, and butter-poached prime rib, all cooked to perfection. $$$$$BurgerFi18139 Biscayne Blvd., 305-466-0350Its not surprising that this Florida-based better burger franchise is one of Americas fastest-growing. With dcor thats relaxingly retro yet futuristically earth-friendly (think recycled Coke bottle chairs), beverages ranging from milkshakes to craft beers, and sourced hormone/antibiotic-free, grass-fed Angus burgers on branded buns, for prices rivaling those for fast-food junkburgers, whats not to love? There are also vegetarian quinoa burgers or Kobe dogs, plus accessories including hand-cut fries, killer crisp-battered onion rings, freshly made, all-natural frozen custard, and toppings galore. $ Cadillac RanchVillage at Gulfstream Park 921 Silks Run Rd. #1615, 954-456-1031Its hard to decide if the most fun interpretation of beef here is the weekend prime rib dinner special (with two sides and a meat hunk hefty enough for sandwiches the next day) or the mechanical bull. Party like its 1980 at this all-American restolounge/sports bar, which includes two outdoor patios with fire pits and, sometimes, live rootsy music. If you miss out on the roast beef (it goes fast), there are burgers, steaks, meal-size salads, and classic bar bites. $$-$$$ Fresko19048 NE 29th Ave., 786-272-3737Forget thick, dough-wrapped potato knishes and blintzes slathered with sour cream. As its name suggests, this kosher dairy eatery eschews the starch/sugar-laden traditional tfavorites for salads, smoothies, and similar healthy fare as casual, clean, and contempo rary as the restaurants dcor. Asian-influenced items, like wakametopped tuna tartare with pineapple chutney, are particularly appealing, while those craving classic combinations like smoked salmon and cream cheese can enjoy them on a light-crusted designer pizza. To drink, smoothies are supplemented by refreshing herbal infusions like green lemonade (with mint and basil). $$Fuji Hana2775 NE 187th St., Suite #1, 305-932-8080A people-pleasing menu of typical Thai and Japanese dishes, plus some appealing contemporary creations (like the Spicy Crunchy Tuna Roll, an inside-out tuna/avocado/tempura maki, topped with more tuna and served with a luscious creamy cilantro sauce) has made this eatery a longtime favorite. But vegetarians -for whom seafood-based condiments can make Asian foods a minefield -might want to add the place to their worth a special drive list, thanks to chefs winning ways with tofu and all-around accommodation to veg-only diets. $$-$$$Kampai3575 NE 207th St., 305-931-6410At this longtime neighborhood favorite Japanese/Thai restaurant, many come just for the slightly pricy but very generous sushi specialties. Most makis are cooked, but for raw-fish fans the tempura-flaketopped crunchy tuna/avocado roll with spicy mayo, and tuna both inside and out, is a people-pleaser. Dont neglect Thai specialties, though, especially red and green curries customizable as to heat (mild, medium, hot, and authentic Thai hot). And for a bargain light lunch, try tonjiru, miso soup jazzed up with veggies and pork. $$-$$$La Montanara18855 NE 29th Ave., 305-974-0167A lushly vine-covered walkway leading to the door and back patio of this secluded but expansive restaurant serves notice that diners are in for an exclusive Italian experience. Ilario Giunchi, co-founder of Caracass famed original La Montanara, has brought much of the menu to this second location, including housemade pastas and creative carpaccios like a delicate crudo version of vitello tonnato. Whatever else you order, dont miss the signature mascarpone/prosciutto focaccias from the beautifully tiled stone pizza oven. Budgeting diners: Explore weekday lunch specials, which include sides. $$-$$$$ Mos Bagels & Deli2780 NE 187th St., 305-936-8555While the term old school is used a lot to describe this spacious (160-seat) establishment, it actually opened in 1995. It just so evokes the classic NY delis we left behind that it seems to have been here forever. Example: Lox and nova arent pallid, prepackaged fish, but custom-sliced from whole slabs. And bagels are hand-rolled, chewy champions, not those machine-made puffy poseurs. As complimentary pastry bites suggest, and the massive size of the succulent, sufficiently fatty pastrami sandwiches confirm, generous Jewish Mo(m) spirit shines here. $$Mr. Chefs Fine Chinese Cuisine & Bar18800 NE 29th Ave. #10, 786-787-9030Considering our countys dearth of authentic Chinese food, this stylish eatery is heaven-sent for Aventura residents. Owners Jin Xiang Chen and Shu Ming (a.k.a. Mr. Chef) come from Chinas southern seacoast province of Guangdong (Canton). But youll find no gloppily sauced, Americanized-Cantonese chop sueys here. Cooking is properly light-handed, and seafood specialties shine (try the spicy/crispy salt and pepper shrimp). For adventurers, theres a cold jellyfish starter. Even timid taste buds cant resist tender fried shrimp balls described this way: With crispy adorable fringy outfit. $$-$$$Pilar20475 Biscayne Blvd. 305-937-2777Named after Ernest Hemingways fishing boat, this eatery, helmed for its first decade by chef Scott Fredel, is now under new ownership. The menu is a mix of classic dishes (grilled skirt steak with chimichurri and fries; chicken parm), todays trendy favorites (sliders, tuna tartare), and pastas including linguine with shrimp, tomato, basil, and garlic in Alfredo sauce. But executive chef Frank Ferreiros focus remains fresh seafood, like pan-seared colossal scallops with sauted spinach, fried onions, roasted corn, and champagne butter sauce. $$$Sicilian Oven20475 Biscayne Blvd., 305-682-1890Dont think that square-shaped doughy pizza is the specialty here. Oven is really the operative word, referring to the open kitchens impressive-looking, open-flame wood-burner, and for our money the places thin-crusted pies are the way to go. Toppings, applied amply, range from traditional Italian-American (like made-in-Wisconsin Grande mozzarella) to popular (fresh mozz, even balsamic glaze); crust options include whole grain and gluten-free. Other must-haves: arancini (deep-fried rice balls stuffed with mozz and ground beef) and cervellata sausage with broccoli rabe. $$ Soho Asian Bar & Grill19004 NE 29th St., 305-466-5656 Do bring your pocket flashlight to this kosher restaurant. Considering the menus expansiveness, youll be doing lots of reading despite dim, lounge-lizard lighting. The stars here are small plates and over-the-top Asian fusion sushi rolls, like the Korean: short ribs atop a kimchee-garnished maki of pured avocado, cuke, scallion, and sweet potato. But the menu of tapas and entres ranges from Japanese-inspired items to pad Thai, Middle Eastern kabobs, Chinese-American pepper steak, even all-American grilled steaks. Highlights: signature fried cauliflower with chili sauce, and an appealing house nut bread with three spreads. $$-$$$ Sushi Siam19575 Biscayne Blvd. 305-932-8955(See Miami / Upper Eastside listing)SUNNY ISLES BEACHAlba17315 Collins Ave., 786-923-9305From bad-boy celeb chef Ralph Pagano, Sole resorts seaside Italian/ Italian-American eatery has an irreverent retro Rat Pack vibe and a menu featuring naked ravioli from the Gnudi Bar, fresh seafood, homemade pastas, classic and contemporary pizzas, and old school red sauce joint entres, some upscaled. (When lobster Franaise is available, why settle for chicken?) Almond-sage butter-sauced butternut squash gnudi is a best bet. And meals end with another best bet: the Vinny D Split, a game enabling tables to win their meals for free. $$$$ Chef Ho16850 Collins Ave., 305-974-0338Deep-pocketed diners who ate at the Setai when Jonathan Wright was executive chef already know chef Hos work. His dazzling dim sum were the menus highlight. Now theyre affordable for all. Dumplings (chive and shrimp, green tea duck, truffle-spiked scallop, more) have skins delicate enough to see through; open shrimp dumplings with dried scallops are almost flower-like in appearance; steamed cheung fan (rice noodle crpes) rolled around Chinese crullers are simply sinful, as are flaky-crusted egg custard tarts. And the regular menu measures up to the small plates. $$-$$$Copper Chimney18090 Collins Ave., 305-974-0075At this family-owned (and kid-friendly), white-tablecloth Indian restaurant, prices are more upscale than average, but so is the foods elegant presentation -plus features like a full bar, live Bollywood/ belly dancing on weekends, and, among familiar North Indian fare, dishes blending contemporary touches with traditional tastes. Especially enjoyable: starters inspired by street snacks, like bikaneri chaat (fried gram flour crisps, chickpeas, and yogurt) served with two chutneys; anything featuring paneer cheese, from classic spinach/ cheese palak paneer to creative khazazs-e-lazzat (sundried tomatostuffed paneer/potato dumplings in smooth cream sauce). $$$Epicure Gourmet Market & Caf17190 Collins Ave., 305-947-4581Who even knew that the late Rascal House had an ocean view? Diners may have to eat standing up to glimpse water over the dunes from the panoramic caf windows of the gourmet market that replaced the Rascal, but you know youre on a tropical beach, not Brighton Beach. The big, bright cafs menu, more global diner than Jewish deli, includes daily specials ranging from spa-grilled chicken to homemade Italian sausage and peppers. But its worth seeking out items that made South Beachs original Epicure famous: sandwiches featuring housemade rare roast beef; shrimp or chunky smoked whitefish salads; fresh baked goods. $$$The H Restaurant17608 Collins Ave., 305-931-9106This friendly, family-owned bistro is the sort of homeaway-fromhome found every few blocks in France -here Gerard and Karin Herrison, plus chef son Julien, formerly had a restaurant -but theyre rarely found in South Florida. Burgers, et al., are available, but with garlicky escargots, a savory/sweet-dressed salad of duck confit atop frise, pan-seared foie gras with port/raspberry sauce, fish with an impeccable lemon beurre blanc, and a satisfying steak/frites (with peppery cognac cream sauce). Wed leave the American stuff to the kids. $$$-$$$$Il Mulino New York17875 Collins Ave., 305-466-9191If too much is not enough for you, this majorly upscale ItalianAmerican place, an offshoot of the famed NYC original, is your restaurant. For starters, diners receive enough freebie food -fried zucchini coins, salami, bruschetta with varying toppings, a wedge of quality parmigiano, garlic bread -that ordering off the menu seems superfluous. But mushroom raviolis in truffle cream sauce are irresistible, and perfectly tenderized veal parmesan, the size of a large pizza, makes a great take-out dinnerfor the next week. $$$$-$$$$$Mozart Caf18110 Collins Ave., 305-974-0103 This eatery (which serves breakfast as well as lunch and dinner) is a kosher dairy restaurant, but not the familiar Old World type that used to proliferate all over New Yorks Lower Eastside Jewish community. Dcor isnt deli but modern-artsy, and the food is not blintzes, noodle kugel, etc., but a wide range of non-meat items from pizzas to sushi. Our favorite dishes, though, are Middle Easterninfluenced, specifically Yemenite malawach (paratha-type flatbread sandwiches, savory or sweet), and shaksuka (nicknamed eggs in purgatory; the spicy eggplant version will explain all). $$-$$$ Kitchen 30516701 Collins Ave., 305-749-2110Offering eclectic American fare, this resort restaurant room, despite its contemporary open kitchen, has the retro-glam look of a reno vated discotheque -which is what it was. In fact, its still as much lounge as eatery, so its best to arrive early if you want a relatively DJ-free eating experience. A seductive mango-papaya BBQ sauce makes ribs a tasty choice any night, but most local diners in the know come on nights when the restaurant features irresistibly priced seasonal seafood specials (all-you-can-eat stone crabs one night, lobster on another). A spacious dining counter overlooking the cooks makes the Kitchen a comfortable spot for singles. $$$Piazzetta17875 Collins Ave., 305-918-6816You cant help feeling optimistic about a tourist towns food scene when its resort restaurants, which generally walk the middle of the road, get creative. And it doesnt get much more creative than this stylish restaurant and Italian market, which bills itself as a trip to an Italian-inspired little market square, but which, along with artisanal salumi plus pizzas and pastas, serves sushi. Particularly tasty: the native Neapolitan pizza chefs truffled taleggio and mushroom pies; meltingly tender braised short ribs; an impeccable market-driven meat and cheese platter. $$$Preservation18250 Collins Ave., 305-974-0273 Restaurant trendsetters, anyone with a back-to-the-land ethic, and lovers of food history and culture will especially love this rustic-looking places focus: proteins and produce, house-preserved via curing, pickling, and smoking. And its no novelty act. Dishes arent all preserved, but rather use preserved items to accent fresh ingredients: a Cobb salad with fresh greens, tomato, and egg, plus house-smoked bleu cheese dressing, chicken, and bacon; smoked tomato soup with fresh basil mousse; smoked short rib Benedict for brunch. A variety of jarred preserves and pickles are available retail, too. $$-$$$. Sumo Sushi Bar & Grill17630 Collins Ave., 305-682-1243Sushi may well have been served in Sunny Isles before this longtime neighborhood favorite opened, but Sumo was the neighborhoods first sushi bar to double as a popular lounge/hangout as well as restaurant. Ladies nights are legend. While Thai and Chinese dishes are available, as well as purist nigiri, few can resist the truly sumo-wrestler-size maki rolls, the more over-the-top, the better. Our bet for biggest crowd pleaser: the spicy Pink Lady (shrimp tempura, avocado, masago, cilantro, and spicy mayo, topped with rich scallop-studded dynamite sauce. $$-$$$ Timo17624 Collins Ave., 305-936-1008Since opening in 2003, the inventive yet clean and unfussy Italian/ Mediterranean-inspired seasonal food at this hot spot, created by chef/owner Tim Andriola (at the time best known for his stints at Chef Allens and Marks South Beach), has been garnering local and national raves. Dont bother reading them. Andriolas dishes speak for themselves: a salad of crisp oysters atop frise, cannelloni bean, and pancetta; foie gras crostini with a subtle caramelized orange sauce; a blue crab raviolo with toasted pignolias and brown butter; or a wood-oven three-cheese white pizza. $$$-$$$$ Werner Staubs Peppermill350 Bayview Dr., 305-466-2016Itll likely be years until diners stop instinctively heading for the tropic-alpine chalet that formerly housed the Peppermill at the Waterways in Aventura. But this new indoor/outdoor spaces bay views are much more spectacular. And the food is the same unique old-school stuff. Seafood is featured, and while there are contemporary preparations, you cant resist hard-to-find retro dishes like imported Dover sole almondine, Swiss-style poached trout with champagne-shallot sauce, an elaborate steak tartar, and for dessert, peach Melba or strawberries Romanoff. $$$ 305-758-05167941 biscayne blvd., miamiSee our extensive Thai & Sushi menu at www.SiamRiceThaiAndSushi.com DINE IN TAKE OUT DELIVERY PARTY CATERINGOpen 7 Days for Lunch and Dinner FOLLOW US ON Mon-Fri 11:30AM 11PM; Sat-Sun 12:30PM 11PM Your purchase of $30+(excluding Lunch Specials) with this ad. exp. 2/28/14$5OFF HAPPY VALENTINES DAY!THAI & JAPANESE LUNCH SPECIALS from $7.99MonSat

PAGE 91

Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT S

PAGE 92

Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT S DESIGN DISTRICT: 3800 N MIAMI AVE FOR LEASE | $75 PSF NNN || 6,000 SF AVAILABLE Get noticed at this premium retail space located at the corner of a four-way intersection at the gateway to the trendy Design District. This soon-to-be completed 16,000 SF bi-level building features four large spaces. Join anchor tenant Mitchel Gold + Bob Williams. TONY ARELLANO | 305 571 9991 info@metro1cre.com ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT DISTRICT: FILLING STATION LOFTS FOR LEASE | INQUIRE TODAY Now available Filling Station Lofts. 81 Units ranging from 878 to 2,000 SF. Lofts have 18 ft ceilings, concrete wood, stainless steel, glass, and imported NYC tile. Live steps away from Wynwood and the Arsht Center, and minutes to South Beach and Downtown. CESAR DELAFLOR | 305 571 9991 info@metroproperties.com UPPER EASTSIDE: CALL FOR DETAILS FOR SALE: RESTAURANT OPPORTUNITY Exclusive opportunity to acquire a successful business, land and a Dual 4 COP license on trendy Upper Eastside. 2013 gross sales over $860,000. The building is 2,630 SF and sits on a 17,546 SF lot. *Picture is not actual property PETER ANDOLINA | 305 989 3934 pandolina@metro1cre.com DESIGN DISTRICT: 3801 N MIAMI AVE FOR SALE | $4.6 M Exclusive opportunity to acquire a corner building with the highest visibility in the Design District. This property will t a variety of uses including retail, restaurant, or an array of mixed uses. Allows up to +/129,000 SF of gross development and buildings up to 20 stories high. TONY CHO | 305 571 9991 info@metro1cre.com WYNWOOD: 2049 N MIAMI AVE FOR SALE | $7.5 M 17,963 SF portfolio of three properties located in the heart of the Wynwood Arts District featuring multiple roll-up doors, high ceilings, AC, renovated exterior / interior and a large frontage on N. Miami Avenue. TONY CHO | 305 571 9991 info@metro1cre.com HISTORIC BUENA VISTA EAST: 78 NE 47 ST FOR SALE | $679,000 3 BD / 2 BA + den, hidden gem in the heart of the Design District! Exquisitely remodeled home featuring a complete renovation from new electrical, pluming, A/C and sprinkler system, to designer carport with electrical gate. Great for entertaining stunning pool and an A/C cottage with a full bathroom. CESAR DELAFLOR | 305 571 9991 info@metroproperties.com HISTORIC BUENA VISTA: 4700 NE MIAMI CT FOR SALE | $479,000 Beautiful Historic Design District Home. This 3 BD / 2 BA sits on a great corner lot & offers a newly renovated kitchen, original wood ooring, 1 car garage and a private yard. Ready for a new owners personal touch, this home is a diamond in the rough with the right location at the best time in the market. Come in and make it yours. CESAR DELAFLOR | 305 571 9991 info@metroproperties.comCONTACT US TODAY IF YOU ARE LOOKING TO BUY, SELL OR LEASE WITHIN THE URBAN CORE. metro1.com RESIDENTIAL SHOWCASE COMMERCIAL SHOWCASE BRICKELL: BRICKEL BAY DR FULLY LEASED RETAIL FOR SALE | $1.9 M Purchase a fully leased 4,500 SF restaurant space. This space is located within a condo-hotel lobby atmosphere with local and tourist pedestrian trafc. Restaurant capacity is approximately 210 seats. Asking price is 1.9 M approximately yielding a 6.75% CAP return. ANDRES LEMOS | 305 409 3737 alemos@metro1cre.com DESIGN DISTRICT: 70-74 NE 40 ST FOR SALE | $9 M LEASE | $125 PSF NNN Prime Design District retail building for lease. Total SF equals 4,500 with a 500 SF urban green space located in the back. Landlord will consider adding SF + additional oors for qualied credit tenants. Will consider long term leases. Also available for sale. TONY CHO | 305 571 9991 info@metro1cre.com DESIGN DISTRICT: 4030 N MIAMI AVE FOR LEASE | SHORT TERM LEASES AVAILABLE Prime street retail located at the entrance of Miamis Design District, only a block away from the 195 exit. This street facing 7,642 SF bi-level space is perfect for a variety of uses. TONY CHO | 305 571 9991 info@metro1cre.com BAYSIDE: 740 NE 71 ST FOR SALE | $439,000 Best priced home East of Biscayne! 3 bdrm/2 bath contemporary pool home w/ an open oor plan. Nestled beneath a canopy of oak trees and staghorn ferns on a 9,375 SF oversized fenced lot. New hurricane impact windows, new roof, and new central A/C. Walk to bay, park, gym, restaurants and more. We are your Upper Eastside experts! MARCY KAPLAN & LORI BRANDT | 786 543 5755 gimmeshelter@metro1properties.com SELLER MOTIVATED JUST LISTED JUST LISTEDOMNI / EDGEWATER: 1950 NW 1 AVE FOR SALE | $10.9 M Rare Full City Block Development Opportunity (2.49 acres). Recently appraised for $15 M! Owner is relocating and willing to sell at a steep discount. 4% co-broker commission. Phased development, also great for land-banking for future appreciation. TONY CHO | 305 571 9991 info@metro1cre.com



PAGE 1

CALL 305-756-6200 FOR INFORMATION ABOUT THIS ADVERTISING SPACE February 2014 www.BiscayneTimes.com Volume 11 Issue 12

PAGE 3

*Prices valid Feb 5-15, 2014 rrfntb* fn rr*nt*

PAGE 4

rfntb rfntbtff r rffntb rfrn rfr rrfr rr rr n nt tbr nr rn fntb fb b b bnt b b b t t nt b b b bt b bt

PAGE 7

2060 N Bayshore Dr, Miami FL 33137 I 305.615.1376rfrrnnnnnnnnnnnntb nnnnnnnbnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnb TOMI ROSE rfrnftrf b THE rfnrntbn rfnfrnrfn nrtnrrn rrfrrr fnrtrnrt nrn frnrnrrrrtn nff rrrtf fnnnr nbf frt rr ffn tfnbf r ffrnr tfrr nn rntfrnn rt TOMI ROSE & OPULENCE INTL REALTY Double-Teaming Sports & Entertainment Real Estate

PAGE 8

COVER STORY 20 DawnTown: Amazing design COMMENTARY 10 Fe edback: Letters 14 Jack King: Random Ridiculousness OUR SPONSORS 16 BizBuzz: February 2014 COMMUNITY NEWS 40 Aventuras E-mail Policy 40 Palette Miami Festival: For Locals 41 To FDOT, Every Street Is a Highway NEIGHBORHOOD CORRESPONDENTS 48 Jen Karetnick: Slaughter on Tenth Avenue 50 Jay Beskin: For the Love of Sears 52 Ada m Schachner: Miamis Tipping Point 54 Mark Sell: 125th Street Draws Crowds 56 Ken Jett: Dare You to Get Involved ART & CULTURE 58 Anne Tschida on feisty Larry Poons 60 Melissa Wallens Galleries + Museums 62 Events Calendar: Soweto Singers POLICE REPORTS 64 Derek McCanns Biscayne Crime Beat PARK PATROL 66 Jim W. Harper: Wainwright Delight COLUMNISTS 68 All Things Animal: A Fond Farewell 70 Picture Story: Freedom Tower 71 Your Garden: Wild Cucumbers 72 Kids and the City: Scouts Honor 73 Going Green : Blessed Water 74 Vino: French Country Wines 75 Dish: Vegan Pizza, Batch Cocktails DINING GUIDE 76 Re staurant Listings: 292 Biscayne Corridor Restaurants RWBimini BOOK YOUR GETAWAY TODAY! WWW.RWBIMINI.COM FOR MORE INFO, CALL 1-888-930-8688.Ship registry Panama. Management reserves all rights. Promotion & prices subject to change or cancellation. Valid for new bookings only. Valid Friday to Sunday. Booking window now until 3/30/14. Travel window now until 3/30/14. Blackout dates apply. Does not include resort fee and 16% tax. Does not include port charges. Must be 18 years of age to gamble in international waters and in The Bahamas. Must have a valid government-issued photo ID and birth certicate or valid Passport. Gambling problem? Call 1-800-GAMBLER.Resorts World Bimini offers breathtaking water and marina views. Enjoy hours of nonstop gaming action at the brand-new, state-of-the-art casino featuring live-action table games such as Craps, Roulette, Blackjack, Baccarat, Slots and the ONLY Sports Books near Florida. Nestled along the white sand beaches and turquoise waters of the Bahamas, Resorts World Bimini boasts beautifully appointed accommodations, six vibrant restaurants and bars, 40% OFF ISLAND TRAVEL PACKAGES From $358pp2-Night Stay and Round-Trip Cruise Aboard Bimini SuperFastYOU BET... YOU CAN ESCAPE TO BIMINI, BAHAMAS JUST MINUTES FROM SOUTH FLORIDA! PUBLISHER & EDITOR r CONTRIBUTORS fntrnSenior Writer nrnr bArts Editor r tnrt t t rr r n nn rnrn BUSINESS MANAGER rrr rrrr ACCOUNT EXECUTIVES r r r rr ART DIRECTOR rn r ADVERTISING DESIGN rrr CIRCULATION rrr PRINTING rCONTENTSPO Box 370566, Miami, FL 33137 www.biscaynetimes.com rfnftbfrfft nbb F OR A DVERTISING INFORMATION CALL 305-756-6200 58 68 73Serving 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

PAGE 9

Miami HEAT Corporate Partnerrf ntbrfrfttt rrrr rrrrrrffrrrrfrr f r rr rffrffr rrr NOW OPEN IN WYNWOOD

PAGE 10

Two Blocks East, then Ten Blocks South, Then Five Blocks East Got That?Kudos yet again to Biscayne Times for Eric Bojnanskys wonderful cover story on naming Little Haiti (Names Matter, January 2014). Theres a taint of racism in some but not all of the comments by persons opposed to naming ers will honor it by naming it. would leave Little River mostly intact. Little Haiti would be sort of an L-shape, Avenue, where it would turn south down head east to NE 4th Court, which would go down to the southern boundary of NE stretch along NE 2nd Avenue from NE think it deserves. John Chellino MiamiUnlike the Lemon Trees, They Are Here to StayLong live Little Haiti! remain within the community because the majority of the people who live and conduct business in the area. My father owns a home in Little Haiti and has refused to sell to inves tors like many of his Haitian neighbors did because of the acceptance he feels in this community. My father has lived in several states, including New York and Connecticut, and also in Canada, but Miami sealed the deal for him. He purchased his home here because of the many Haitian people he met 30 years ago who have since then rede Little Haiti. Peter Ehrlich thinks he can drive us Haitians out by renaming the famous Little Haiti back to Lemon City? owning a couple of properties in Little Haiti as well, and we are planning to stay there, whether you like it or not. Little Haiti is here to stay. By the way, there are no more lemon trees in the area, but there are many Haitian people who are here to stay. Ruth Henry Little HaitiReally? Little Somalia?Erik Bojnansky wrote a very good arthat well-to-do exiles do not want to live in Little Haiti for the same reasons that non-Haitian business owners do not appreciate this moniker to a business area. Does anyone expect the free market to invest in a renamed neighborhood like Maybe if the locals would witness great efforts and success at establishing a functioning democracy and economy in Haiti by expatriates, then maybe the renaming idea would receive more love. circles, but appearance does matter, plus the saying whats in a name? This should not distract from pride of cultural heritage. Ulrich Michel Lemon CityWhat Little Haiti Really Needs: A Marketing PlanThanks once again to the BT and senior reporter Eric Bojnansky for a detailed story on Lemon City and the people and businesses who have occupied it. Great didnt know that Little Havana is just designation. One thing Bojnansky did not mention is that if you look at most maps, the name Little Haiti already appears. This started about a decade ago, when Miami created the Little Haiti NET missioner that it was a bad precedent to favor one group over an existing ethnicThere are many groups in Miami who have had an impact on our city, but how can we rename any area simply because one group has occupied its pages of history for a few decades? why not rename Coconut Grove the Gay Grove, as it was the social and business hub of the GLBT community in the Gays on the Beach; after all, it was a few Commentary: LETTERS Continued on page 12

PAGE 11

REAL ESTATE BROKER / CEO LIST WITH ME AND SELL IT FAST!305-895-JEFF(5333) BISCAYNE PARK TURNKEY 15' HIGH VAULTED CEILINGS A CLASSIC BROUGHT INTO THE 21 CENTURY ART DECO DREAM HOME6bdr 3 bth Large New Jacuzzi Deck, 3500 Sq Ft 2 Car Garage. Hi Tech Italian Miele/Bosch Stainless & Quartz Kitchen. Itailian Glass Tile Baths, Master has Body Sprays and Steam Room. Guest Wing/In-Laws Quaters $599K KEYSTONE POINT NON-WATERFRONT ON CORNER LOT4bdr/2ba, 1 car garage, new pool, eat-in kitchen with stainless steel appliances, family room with hi vaulted ceilings, marble master bath. Oversized 1/3 acre corner lot $549K SANS SOUCI ESTATES CONTEMPORARY 2014 NEW CONSTR. 75 ON WATER. ZERO EDGE POOL & SPA 6br/6.5ba pool 5563 sqft 2 car garage. Hi-tech gourmet kitchen. All white glass porcelain flooring & baths. 30 high ceilings. Home theatre/media rm. impact windows $2.2M DUPLEX GREAT INVESTMENT GREAT NEIGHBORHOOD! IN THE HEART OF BISCAYNE GARDENS SURROUNDED BY 3/4 ACRE SINGLE FAMILY RESIDENCES SELLING IN THE 3-500K RANGE.3bdr 2 bth on one side 2bdr 1 bth on other, all new appliances, new bathrooms, newer roof, reconditioned oak floors, central a/c over 2000 sq ft vacant ready to rent or move in. Great for owner/renter. Cash only $210K CONTEMPORARY 2014 NEW CONSTR. 75 ON THE WATER POOL & SPA6br/6ba waterfall pool & spa, 4513 sq ft 4 car garage. Hi-tech gourmet kitchen. All white glass porcelain flooring & baths. 30 high ceilings. Home theatre/media rm. impact windows $1.9M KEYSTONE POINT WATERFRONT DIRECT OCEAN ACCESS REMODELED 2014 !4 bdr 2 bth 2400SF completely remodeled brand new in 2014, 24 Marble Floors throughout. All Granite Eat-in Kitchen with Stainless Steel Appliances, State of the Art New Baths, 24 hr GaurdGated Community Only $825K DUPLEX INCOME PROPERTY SANS SOUCI ESTATES KEYSTONE POINT N MIAMI FL 100 OF DOCKAGE OVERSIZED LOT "SANS SOUCI ESTATES" 28 HIGH CEILINGS !!! 4 bdr/3.5 bth,pool 2.5 Car Gar,3890 Sq.Ft. Center Island Maple & Corian Kitchen, Close to The Bay 24 hr Guard Gated Community ONLY $1.29M SANS SOUCI ESTATES NON-WATER GUARDGATED COMMUNITY5bd/3ba dbl carport 3450sf. Beautiful open floorplan, center island kitchen with breakfast nook, huge great room with wetbar, exotic lush landscaped. 8 riverrock waterfall pool w/built-in jacuzzi. $649K

PAGE 12

gay entrepreneurs who opened gay bars and retail stores, leading that unprecedented revitalization. MiMo (Miami Modern) and all the neighborhoods known as the Upper East it has consisted of the largest concentration of GLBT individuals of any neighborhood in the entire county. My neighborhood of Belle Meade at one time consisted of about Even though the GLBT community can take credit for leading the revitalization of many Miami neighborhoods, house by house, building by building, we have not petitioned Miami leaders to name neigh borhoods after us because we are too busy improving neighborhoods and promoting our businesses in various media. Little Haiti. This situation calls for a marketing plan, Haitian business leaders continue collec tively improving and promoting their busi a great product or service and advertise in the proper media, locals and tourists will Steve Hagen Belle MeadeBeat Em at Their Own Game homeland would cling to a few familiar square miles that hold profound meaning for them here. This is no doubt the same feeling that makes Cubans, even those whove moved away, venerate whats left Land, but the place at least where they could believe in promises again. of Little Haiti will win their campaign the story said, that would be an unprecedented legal step. example? Hang the Welcome to Little Haiti signs from the windows if you must; organize groups to clean up what needs cleaning; and market Little Haiti. Offer tours. Build a Little Haiti website. Haitian landowners can beat the developers at their own game by partnering with investors/developers of their own area with Little Haiti, their task now is to make it a positive association. This NE 2nd Avenue Partnership should counsel business owners, and blanket NET and other redevelopment agencies with applications for funds; they should canvass wealthy Haitians and seek out investment partnerships (yes, people with loads of money!). These days, many investors look for double bottom line investments, those with positive social returns as well as economic returns. Reach out to those who can bring win-win solutions and get ahead of the development wave. Go forth and prosper! Louis Pine MiamiAt 35 Feet, Less Is MoreCongratulations to developer Avra Jain and architect Dean Lewis (The Boulevards Design Doctor, January 2014) on their many projects progressing on Biscayne Boulevard. Their success is foot height limit. That height limit is not only preserving the character and scale of the MiMo Historic District and protecting the residential areas behind it from highrenaissance by way of its companion TDR program (transfer of development possible without the TDRs. Ms. Jain and Mr. Lewiss numerous projects in the MiMo District are being Ms. Jain and her partners are the exact sort of historic preservation-minded developers the MiMo District and May they live long and prosper. Kudos to the associations of the Morningside neighborhoods for endorslegislative process. Lastly, many thanks to Commissioner limit passed, as he promised. Without it, Biscayne Boulevard would have suffered from out-of-scale buildings and speculation stagnation. Elvis Cruz MorningsideCommentary: LETTERS VOTE rrfrnnntbn rrfrnnnr n Kiss Country Afternoon Host Ken OBrien Kiss Country Weekend Dj Dina B Kiss Country Morning Djs: U-Turn Laverne and Kenny Walker LettersContinued from page 10

PAGE 13

Est. 1995BRIAN CARTER, P. A. BROKER ASSOCIATE TOP TEN PRODUCER 2012 | TOP LISTING AGENT 2012cell 305 582 2424 | btcarter@majesticproperties.com Majestic Properties Museum Park | 1040 Biscayne Boulevard Suite 20 | Miami, FL 33132The Darin Feldman Group Majestic Properties #1 Top Producing Group 305 582 6200www.darinfeldmanrealtor.com | dfeldman@majesticproperties.com

PAGE 14

Commentary: MIAMIS KINGBy Jack King BT ContributorHere are some random thoughts on our neighborhood, starting with that Georgia cesspool we call Tallahassee. This year we get to have another election to select yet another head cesspooler. past four years, and virtually nobody in Florida likes him, including the Republicans. Now we get a Democrat, Charlie Crist, who used to be an independent who used to be a Republican, running against him. been cut, mostly on the backs of the poor good. Our economy is still in the tank, and even though unemployment numbers have gone down, its mostly because people have just stopped looking for work. Who wants to get a minimumwage job and still not be able to live on that wage? poor Floridians medical care. Along with the legislature, he cut nearly every social and educational program in Florida, while cutting taxes for businesses. This year he wants to cut another from programs that would help poor and middle-class people. Recently Politico Magazine pub to 14 different parameters, including graduation rates, disease control, and life expectancy. Number one was New Hampshire, and dead last was Mississipbad news. The good news is that were ahead of Louisiana, Tennessee, Alabama, As the Confederacy goes, were doing quite well! Getting a little closer to home, theres an issue that has been bubbling around county hall: What are we to do with libraries? Theres no question that the should we do with our bricks-and-mortar libraries? This is an issue that tugs at my heart. When my daughter was in not just for books, but where she felt comfortable, surrounded by librarians who cared for her and other kids. There is still a need for this scenario, especially for kids who have both parents working. After-school programs can only go so far. for the 21st century? The county needs get its head out of wherever it is and begin to look to the future so that the kids of today have a tomorrow. Moving on to the City of Miami, the rumor du jour is that Commissioner as a city commissioner but is termlimited and cannot run again, will run his wife, Teresa, for his seat. This rumor comes from blogger Al Crespo, who has Commissioner Ethics. Crespo has made his reputation by get ting information out of the city and county from leakers and using public records requests, and hes been relentless, turning up embarrassing information on just about everybody in city and county government. Rev. Richard Dunn, who ran for the city commission last fall, largely with monies tial portion of that money on meals at a While Crespo has been excellent on understanding what it means. And with well mean that the new commissioner As we were going to press, the City of Miami held a public meeting to get input for the implementation of the Coconut Grove Waterfront Master Plan. Not too bad when you consider that this eight years with little action. waterfront has been pretty dormant. Montys and Grove Harbor are paying slightly more than the minimum lease Landing/Grove Key is stuck in the controls a multimillion-dollar piece of city-owned waterfront property, just Thats not a very positive outlook. The one bright spot on the waterfront Club. Over the past years, it has quietly built a solid operation, becoming more responsive both to members and to the community. Unfortunately, it has a very weird lease with the city that allows it to be moved to a new facility if the city is the city is essentially broke and cant afford to build anything. Hey, its Miami! Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com Scott to Sarnoff to the Sasaki Plan A slice of the news, with a little Crespo on the side Photo courtesy of Bill Hansen Catering

PAGE 16

16 Our Sponsors: FEBRUARY 2014By Pamela Robin Brandt BT ContributorBrrr. It sounds unappreciative, coming from an ex-New Yorker whose former abode is roughly 19 degrees below zero, considering the wind chill factor. But considering how many fantabulous outdoor festivals there are in BT s territory this month, were hopeful for many sunny days ahead. One of the fab outdoor festivals is Palette Miami a festive neighborhood fun. Its on February 8, from 3:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at 5700 Biscayne Blvd., on a vacant lot across from 55th Street Station. Thats where the BT is located appropriately, since were the festivals media sponsor. Since there are several other mentions in this issue, well say no more, except see ya there. If its worth doing, its worth overdoing, the old adage goes, and sure enough: The Downtown Miami Part nership (www.downtownmiami.com) announces two other outdoor events, also on February 8. First, the familyand pet-friendly 13th annual Flagler Fest & Classic Car Show. Flagler Street will be closed off for the crowds of people wholl come to check out the collection of vintage cars and hot rods, not to mention the motorcycle show, street performers, historic downtown walking tours, entertainment at the Gusman Center, and more and all free. That Farmers Market (in the median parking lot at 50 Biscayne Blvd.; faceook.com/ ourbiscayne), winner of the Miami Foundations Public Space Challenge for repurposing public spaces as community gathering areas; the market repeats on 2/15, 2/22, and 3/1. Both events run from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., letting out just in time for the opening of Palette Miami. Now thats our kind of day. How about taking the family on a Saturday or Sunday drive to a festival thats not just a road trip, but a time trip? Spend the day in the 13th Century or so at the Florida Renaissance Festival which, for three weekends, March 29-April 13, will be located at Cauley Square Historic Village (22400 Old Dixie Hwy.), north of Homestead. Wander the fairgrounds watching actors in period costumes dem onstrate how European pirates, knights, and tavern wenches in the late medieval period warred, cooked, made crafts, trav eled, and frequently burst into song and dance. Shop at roughly four dozen ye olde souvenir shoppes for your own sword, elf pets. Btw: No pets are allowed, so leave your dogs and real-life dragons at home. For info and tix: www.ren-fest.com. Nows the time to pop in and say hello to a recent arrival in the neighborhood, Design Shop (5582 NE 4th Ct. #7A, 786-859-6365). Owners Lorena and Hugo Mijares, who are also both architects, have stocked their store, located at the 55th Street Station complex ( BT neighbors!), with a selection of unique ing design concepts from cutting-edge serious to seriously funny. (Wouldnt you like to have a designer bird feeder or as you search for a special gift to surprise that extra-special person on your Valentines list. All the more wonderful thanks to a whopping one-time discount of 30% to readers who mention the BT The City of Miami Beach (www.mb culture.com) has a full schedule of outdoor food, movie, and music events this month. The Soundscape Cinema Series, which actually continues through May, will Lord of the Rings (2/5), Lincoln (2/12), Mary Poppins (2/13), Much Ado About Nothing (2/19), and Hellboy (2/26). All start at 8:00 p.m. Also at Soundscape, on February 22 at 8:00 p.m., the citys Arts in the Park program presents a free concert by Tito Puente Jr. and Marlow Rosado. And up at the North Shore Park Bandshell (Collins Avenue and 73rd Street), theres a Food Truck and Music Fest scheduled for February 26, 5:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. For more details/updates on all, visit the website. Assuming it doesnt snow, February is a great month in Miami to put together your own DIY mini wine and food fest. In the old days we believe they were called picnics. Whatever yours can be spec tacular if your wine source is Laurenzos Italian Market (16445 W. Dixie Hwy., 305-944-5052) since, says David Lau renzo, Were continuing our amazing Naturally, Laurenzos can also supply all your other picnic necessities: imported cold cuts, cheeses, breads, olives, des sertseverything but the lawn chairs. To get to your picnic spot the oldfashioned romantic way, bicycle. No Continued on page 18B izB uz zSales, special events, and more from the people who make Biscayne Times possible

PAGE 17

N. MIAMI BEACH 3025 NE 163rd St 305.944.8080 HOLLYWOOD 4150 N 28th Terrace 954.874.3888 SWOOPrfntb brEveryone notices a great accent.

PAGE 18

18 Our Sponsors: FEBRUARY 2014bike? No worries. Bike Nerds (9538 NE 2nd Ave., 786-332-3463) just got in a huge stock of brand-new, old-school line of Giro helmets. If you have a bike for readers: Mention the BT for $10 off Mr. Wood Custom Floors (305-758-7505, clean enough to eat off of. This months deal for readers mentioning the BT : sand At Italian seafood eatery Big Fish (620 NE 78th St., 305-373-1770), on now romantic enough to be date-worthy. waterfront deck rules. Starting this month, the restaurant will be serving lunch and Sunday brunch, as well as dinner. And a off your check of $30 or more for Lunch, Dinner, or Sunday Brunch. new advertiser Buffalo Wild Wings (18721 Biscayne Blvd., 305-962-9995), ago. Like all locations of the national Aventuras Town Center mall features a huge variety of chicken wings, as well as an astonishing number of big-screen HD TVs 64 of them, tuned to almost just watching, in order to try all 18 sauces and four dry rubs. on, but licensed nutritionist Dina Garcia at Vida Nutrition (11098 Biscayne Blvd., off, the way contestants do on TVs The Biggest Loser al caloric needs with maximum accuracy. This month the high-tech ten-minute breath test, normally $99, is only $49 for readers who mention the BT this month that focuses on feeding your mind, not your mouth. Those who is it or not, shouldnt miss the exhibition, Miami-Dade Colleges Museum of Art + Design (www.mdc. edu), Leonard Turkel: Pioneer & Ac Biscayne Blvd.). Another more unconventional musi MDC Live Arts : the National Theatre of Scotlands runaway hit show The Strange Undoing of Prudencia Hart whisky shots, in an actual bar: Bar 337, run 2/19-23: mdclivearts.org. Continuing this seasons St. MarthaYamaha Concert Series (2301 Biscayne Blvd., 305-458-0111), the next two at $10 (including a fun wine/snacks also the love bug month, as Hannah Lasky of Hannah & Her Scissors (611 NE 86th St., 305-772-8426) calls it. So in honor of February 14, shes offering mentioning the BT And since the salon hair artist), its also a fab secret source Valentines Day gifts. Another source of great affordable greater than at the brand-new location of new advertiser Goodwill Industries of South Florida (441 NE 81st St.). For B izB uz zContinued from page 16 Paramount Bay gorgeous 2bedroom $765,000Amazing bay views form this 2/2 in luxury Edgewater condo. Great amenities, huge balcony. White tiles throughout. 1240 Sq Ft of pure luxury.William Harbour 786 762 2602 Recherchons agents immobiliers francophones expriments Now recruiting experienced RealtorsVisit our new Morningside storefront at 5781 Biscayne Boulevard 1060 Brickell Avenue 2bed $465,000Great opportunity to own TODAY in Miamis most desirable avenue. Why wait for pre-construction? This 2 bedroom has beautiful wood oors and great pool and city views. Luxury condo with all amenities.Yann Rouseau 786 762 2602 1Bedroom next to Paramount Bay $250,000Great views, lots of space, new kitchen, lots of closets, bayfront pool and tennis courts this 831 sf 1 bedroom has it all! Unit is currently rented. Waterfront building in red-hot East Edgewater. Dont miss it.Serge Uzan 786 762 2602 Miami Beach Waterfront Home $895,000Waterfront paradise on private gated island. 4be/3ba modern style home with terrazzo oors, impact windows, new kitchen, baths and roof. 60ft dockage on waterfront. Room for pool. All this for under a million!William Harbour 786 762 2602 Midtown multifamily building $530,0005-unit multifamily property in trendy Biscayne corridor close to midtown and design district. All units recently updated. Great income producing, great upside potential close to the Design District; 100% occupancy. Jocelyne Abramoff 786 762 2602 REDUCED South Beach 1be/1ba with parking $275,000Location, location, location! Between Lincoln road and Hispaniola way this rare condo has it all: Open kitchen, lots of closet space, covered parking. Located at pool level, your door opens to the pool deck!Muriel Lhoff 786 762 2602

PAGE 19

ChiroSPAHealth. Balance. Beauty. THE PAIN TERMINATORDR. JARED ROSE, D.C.THIS Doctor Makes House Calls305-834-7900 Miamis Newest Bicycle ShopSales, Accessories & Repairs 9538 NE 2nd Ave. Miami Shores, FL 33138 Mon-Sat 10a-6p786-332-3463www.miamibikenerds.com Let Licensed Nutritionist Dina Garcia, RD/LDN, show you how11098 Biscayne Blvd., Ste. 401Visit www.VidaNutrition.com to learn about our 7 Easy Steps to Permanent Weight Loss786-479-4081Find out how many calories you burn a day with a MedGem Metabolic Test, As Seen On TVs The Biggest Loser, Reg. $99, just $49 for BT readers! Miami ShoresAREA MARKETPLACE Shop local! Support the businesses that make Biscayne Times possible, and tell them you saw their ad in the BT. For more information about Marketplace advertising like this, call Sandra Glorian at 305-756-6200. 305-758-7505 MrWoodMiami.comINSTALLATIONS REPAIRS CUSTOM STAINS & DESIGNS EXTERIOR DECKING INSURANCE CLAIMS SOLID HARDWOOD FLOORS ENGINEERED FLOORS LAMINATE FLOORS MARBLE & STONE CRYSTALLIZATION & RESTORATION Call today for a FREE ESTIMATE! Sanding & Refinishing SUPER SPECIALS:$1.50 SF(min. 1500 SF) OR $2.00 SF(min. 1000 SF) With this ad or mention BT. Serving Miami Shores & South Florida for over 15 years.Drive-Thru. A grand opening is scheduled for February 13. With luck, you may even get that Valentines Day gift for an unbeatable price: nada. Check out this issues ad for the Shops at Midtown Miami and follow the instructions to vote in their Who Wore It Best? contest. (That is, which 99.9 FM Kiss Country DJs had down chili cook-off.) Top winner gets a midtownmiami. On to more serious stuff: The Depart ment of Health, Education, and Welfare. This months news from brand-new Metropolitan International School of Miami in Wynwood (3465 NW 2nd Ave., 305-439-7191), a cutting-edge private institution that so far is only for array of after-school programs will be of fered, such as dance, singing, and acting programs guided by professional teams. Theres also Art Portfolio preparation (for students prepping for an art-focused career). Hmmm, you may be thinking. is only pre-K. Perhaps a little young to get a portfolio together? Right you are. The after-school programs are open to the public and intended for secondary school and high school-age students. At Monsignor Edward Pace High School (15600 NW 32nd Ave., 305is most often associated with its renowned athletic teams. And the term boot camp is usually associated with strenuous physical training. As the cute capitalization suggests, though, Camp, on February 8 from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., is not about athletics or team sports; its an intensive day of art, dance, drama, and music for 5ththrough 8th-graders of both genders. From a wide choice of subjects (draw ing, sculpture, musical theater, band, guitar, hip hop, more), students can attend one morning and one afternoon session before presenting a showcase for parents. Price: just $10, lunch in Dont forget the other children in your family: the doggies and kitties. Whether theyre feeling just neglected and whiny, or theyre truly ill, new advertiser Miami Shores Animal Clinic (570 NW 103rd offers both emergency care and routine medical, surgical, and dental work; does dietary consultations, and more. Then just plain pampering services. Leung Healthcare a medical and two pieces of news this month. First, on February 5, a class on management of blood pressure is scheduled at 888 Leung patients and their guests are welcome. Additionally, Leung just scored sistant, Jean Philippe Charles. Originally from Haiti, he speaks Creole, French, come, whiz kid! In a month when youre having lots remember longtime advertiser Biscayne Dental Center (14771 Biscayne Blvd., 305-945-7745), and thank them for the treatment this month and get either new Glo whitening (a $550 value) or retainers (a $300 value) absolutely free. Residents painting a community mural; a bluegrass chamber choir Okay, the last was not a Knight Arts Challenge winner. We just made it up. artist (in any genre) with exciting, creative ideas but no dough to implement them, this is the time of year to apply for Knight Arts Challenge funding. Dont let the practical stuff intimidate you; the Knight website talks you through the www.KnightArts.org. The applications deadline is February 24. If, on the other hand, youve saved so much taking advantage of the deals above that you have more money than you know what to do with it, schlep it over to new advertiser C1 Bank (2632 N. Miami Ave., www.c1bank.com). You should go anyway, just to see the lobby, which is less like a bank and more like an art gallery. Businesswise, though, services range from simple checking accounts to full business stuff. Though C1 has 26 locations in southwest Florida, genuinely seem to believe in Wynwood and to be having fun. Something special coming up at your business? Send info to bizbuzz@bis caynetimes.com. For BT advertisers only.

PAGE 20

Helen Pierces Pulse won the inaugural 2008 Waterworks competition to transform the sewage pumping station in Museum Park.

PAGE 21

Plans were unveiled last May for a curious, arching, V-shaped structure rising up over the waterfront from downtown Miamis Bayfront Park. Resembling a ski jump on steroids, Miami Lift was actually the winning entry in the 2013 DawnTown Landmark Miami competition. (See this issues cover.) The annual architectural challenge, whose deadline for 2014 entries closed in late January, keeps architects, artists, and designers around the world revving up their computers and creative juices to produce entries that push the boundaries of innovative design to enrich the built environment and the lives of those who inhabit it. DawnTown has been fueling interest in architecture since the organizations inception in 2007. Miami has undergone a radical transformation over the past ten years, and has achieved recognition as one of the fastest-changing cities in the United States. Art Basel Miami Beach brought an awakening in the arts that also generated a growing interest in architecture and design. Everyone knows about the innova tive architecture that happens in places like New York City, Dubai, and Madrid, says Joachim Prez, DawnTowns execu tive director and an adjunct professor at Continued on page 22 An aerial view of Dror Benshetrits winning Miami Lift : The crease gives it structural integrity and strength.Architectural renderings courtesy of DawnTownr fntnnb

PAGE 22

22 the University of Miami School of Archi tecture. We believe Miami should also be mentioned in a similar list. Lets announce it to the world: Miami is a place for architecture. the roster of internationally renowned starchitects putting their signatures on public and private trophy buildings. Among them: the Prez Art Museum Miami and the 1111 Lincoln Road park ing garage by Herzog & de Meuron, another Miami Beach parking garage and condominium tower by Zaha Hadid, condominiums by Rem Koolhaas and Bjarke Ingels, the New World Center by Frank Gehry, and the Patricia and Phillip Frost Museum of Science by London-based Grimshaw Architects. D awnTown began informally in 2007, with a conversation at an Urban Land Institute World Cities conference in Shanghai. Andrew Frey, then a Miami zoning lawyer and now the development manager for CC Residential,and Neisen Kasdin, a land-use attorney and former Miami Beach mayor, began talking about the connection between art and urban development with a Dutch urbanist and art consultant named Kai van Hasselt. In the heady days of Art Basel Miami Beach and a revitalizing downtown and Miami both for the art and the dozens of new residential developments going up in Miami Beach, Brickell, and Midtown what was happening in downtown Miami, which was only then beginning to bloom. That was basically it a short conversation, recalls Frey. We kept in touch with Kai, who wrote up a summary proposal of what an exciting event an architectural competition could be. With the idea of a competition, they decided to draw on downtown Miamis rich and evolving urban context as the perfect backdrop for creative entries, and DawnTown was born. The men agreed that a stand-alone orga nization, with individuals involved in their spare time and with the support of differ ent groups, would make DawnTown more nimble and cohesive. Doing something grassroots with collaborative crowd-sourc ing was important, Frey adds. It meant that a lot of people would buy into it. And indeed a lot of people seemed to think it was an excellent idea. Noted professionals like Terry Riley (then director of the Miami Art Museum) and Jean-Franois Lejeune (UM architecture professor) gave credibility to DawnTown, whose stated mission is to bring creative architecture to Downtown Miami, and to help tell the exciting urban story of Downtown Miami to the world. In 2008, a newly formed board of directors began the process with one advantage: not much money was needed for a competition of that were meant to provoke thought and critical exchange. We had volunteers giving their time, a free website hosting an online venue for the awards ceremony, and sponsors for the prize money, says Frey. The selling point was that we were doing something very tangible and original for Miami. Developer Loretta Cockrum, CEO of the Foram Group, provided funding to help get the competition off the ground, and the Miami Downtown Development Author ity (an independent agency of the City of Miami) came in as a principal sponsor. It sounded like a good idea, to draw attention to downtown, and it was the Betancourt, DDAs deputy director. A variety of issues were in need of design solutions, and the academic exercise of a competition would put those issues through a process and get people talking. You may not ultimately get a solution, he notes, but it can be worthwhile in itself. DawnTownContinued from page 21 Continued on page 24 The Water Drop

PAGE 23

Continued on page 30 2014 SWAROVSKI LIGHTING, LTD. Lighting & BathSINCE 1924 Jewelry for the Home architecture.swarovski.com/shopfinder BLOSSOM

PAGE 24

The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation also proved instrumental in funding DawnTown. We believe that kind of broad-based participation builds on the creative momentum in the commu nity and encourages grassroots ideas to come to the surface, notes Dennis Scholl, director of arts programs for the founda tion. It also reinforces Miamis growth as a place of design excellence. The design issues the contest uses cause the broader community to think about Miami and D in 2007 with a symposium on the future of cities, held at Miami-Dade Colleges Wolfson campus. The events keynote speaker was architect Ricky Burdett, a professor at the London School of Economics, director of LSE Cities, and among many other titles, duties, and honors, the chief architecture advisor to the London 2012 Olympics. A discussion followed his talk, featuring panelists Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk, dean of the UMs School of Architecture; Andres Viglucci, urbanism writer for the ; and DawnTowns cofounder Neisen Kasdin. petitions took place the following year, seeking creative input to transform a hulking sewage-pump station in Bicentennial Park (the future Museum Park) into a waterworks building that would contribute to the aesthetics of downtown Continued from page 22 Continued on page 26BT photos by Silvia Ros

PAGE 25

Great Community Spirit, Parks & Athletic Fields! Morningside Park 40 acres of pure fun & enjoyment including boat ramp & pool! Super Dog Friendly! Near Midtown Shopping & Restaurants! Excellent Schools! Conveniently close to airports & highways while living in a suburban oasis! Just minutes to the Beach! Movin On Up to the Upper East Side!Top things to love about living on the Upper East Side r rfntnbrfntn fnntttbr fntnbnfntn fbntttr rfntnbfntn fnbntttr n fntnbfntn fnntttr fntnbfntn fnnttt NANCY BATCHELOR 305 903 2850 TEXT OR CALL305 316 0660 (NANCYBATCHELOR TeamFrom Modern to Mediterranean r rfntnbfntn fnnttt

PAGE 26

26 Miami and provide space for public information about water conservation. The Waterworks competition drew Finland, and South Korea. First-place winner Helen Pierce of Pierce Workshop in San Antonio, Texas, says her design, titled was inspired by the way I saw the park developing, and particularly the nature of the proposed museums. She wasnt so much interested in making another building as making an art object like a brooch for the park. Its particular appeal was the transforma tive nature of the challenge. Says Pierce: The idea of taking something so unloved and making it into something that could become an icon for the city interested me. In an e-mail exchange with the BT Pierce described her vision: Our proposal was a large piece of moving, noise-making, throbbing public art, an object that has no other purpose than to connect with our primordial senses, to counter the static and intellectual nature of the museums, the body side of the mind/body, a hedonistic experience that is born of the belly of the city and connecting with the cadence of the city. The object, which resembled a giant sea urchin, would be constructed of a steel framework placed over and around the existing pump station. Flexible, curved, photoluminescent (glow-inthe-dark) rubber tentacles with steel reinforcement and illuminated, pulsating tips would extend from the steel armature. By lifting the entire mass off the ground, would engulf passers-by as they approached a digital billboard that wrapped around the base and which could transmit information, from current news in Miami to special digital shows designed for seasonal or special events. The second-place project, showed off the talent of Mikkel Thisted, a young Danish architect who had graduated just a few months earlier from the Aarhus School of Architecture. Third place went to designed by a husband-and-wife team in London: Bryan Astheimer, an environmental designer skilled in sustainable design research, and Sarah Weidner Astheimer, a landscape and urban designer. DawnTownContinued from page 24 Continued on page 28 Beautiful 1500 sf space for rent in Mimo architect Lester Averys Sho Biscayne and 79th. Easy access to 95 and Miami Beach. $2000/mo.

PAGE 28

The following years Metromover competition challenged entrants to design a new station for the Metromover, downtown Miamis elevated train, at a shuttered stop where the art and science museums would be built. The winning entry was submitted by the Australian-based architectural coteam members Rosalea Monacella, Craig Douglas, and Armando Oliver Suinaga. Their vision centered on the idea that a station should be more than just a station; it could itself become an iconic center, a new interactive cultural hub for the city. A massive screen would act as a unifying element between nearby museums and the station plaza, forming a landmark and a gathering place for residents. The station would become a broadcasting unit for each museums programming, from science documentaries to art installations. A large-scale interactive display for images, video, and art installations linking the stations interior to the plaza outside. The expansive atrium, more like an auditorium than a platform, would enable waiting travelers to watch videos or socialize. The second-place project came from team See You Sunday, or Saran Chaiya suta and Prachaya Vanagul in Bangkok. A sculptural, high-tech station design tied together the concepts of art and science, inspired by the nearby museums. Designers Ekaterina Mikhaylova and Ekaterina Vasilieva, team Double Katya, from Saint Petersburg in Russia, took third prize with an entry dubbed for the skeleton-like structure that allowed pedestrians, automobiles, and trains to move through the space uninterrupted. The 2009 judges architects Luis Revuelta and Terry Riley, art collec tor Mera Rubell, Dennis Scholl of the Knight Foundation, Harpal Kapoor of Miami-Dade Transit, and Gillian Thomas of Miamis science museum reported the criteria for its deci sions: Judges liked projects that were iconic and functional, with a scale Metromover tracks and platform in a approval. They applauded the winning spaces of the museums while creating a dynamic public space for the muse ums to use. The ability to celebrate and share art was a plus, while potential revenue-generating opportunities for Miami-Dade County from the screen and plaza also won recognition.DawnTowns 2010 challenge, to design a new seaplane terminal on Watson Island (to replace the old Chalks terminal), again brought entries from around the world, further proof that creativity has no geographical limits. The CA Landscape team, including Trevor Curtis and Sylvia Kim design titled Second place for went to the New York-based team of Stantec, including Vicky Chan, Liange Otero Colon, and Alex Zulas. Third prize for was won by Gerd Wetzel and Martin Plock from Basel. With so many exciting entries, the judges who included Jean Franois Lejeune, Javier Betancourt, and Miamis planning director Francisco Garcia Iglesias, among others gave honorable mentions to designers from Miami, Seoul, and Moscow. In 2011, DawnTown partnered with a local historic preservation group to bring prominence to Miami Marine Stadium, an iconic early piece of Miamis modern architecture period. The Floating Stage challenge was to design a replacement for the large, dilapidated stage that once DawnTown was looking for a complementary structure in an effort to allow DawnTownContinued from page 26 Fish Frame Continued on page 30

PAGE 30

the historic site to become a great event space again. Competition entries arrived from Europe and Asia, as well as South Africa, Australia, and Mexico. Judges included noted artist Michele Oka Doner and the stadiums 1963 designer, architect Hilario Candela. Surprisingly, says Prez, the competi tion didnt and still doesnt receive many entries from South America, despite an extensive online reach that in cludes Twitter, Facebook, and other social media. He also publicizes DawnTown through his blogs, websites, and e-mail. Whats the attraction for people across the world who may never visit this area? Certainly its not the modest $8000 prize to the winning entry. Miami is more interesting to foreigners than to those of us who live here, says the DDAs Javier Betancourt, an urban planner. It takes a fresh set of eyes to appreciate what we have and make it uniquely Miami, even if they dont always get it. He adds, International entrants often pick up things in the environment that we dont always see. According to architect Allan Shulman of Shulman + Associates in Miami, and a 2013 DawnTown competition judge: Architecture is such an international profession, with so much communication that its not easy to tell where anything is from. There are no distinguishing These days, architects arent the only people to compete in the architectural competition. Were seeing disciplines surrounding architecture, says Prez. we dont want to exclude professionals tapping into creativity. Entries have come in from landscape architects, industrial designers, and engineers, among others. Prez says the judges wade through 100 or so entries each year, weeding out those who dont follow the rules and narrowing down the designs with the most creative solutions. In 2012, DawnTowns challenge, titled Design/Build, asked designers to create a low-cost, innovative, and temporary installation on the theme of the Evolu tion of Miami. the win ning design created by architects Manuel Clavel-Rojo (Spain) and Jacob Brillhart (Miami) became a glowing neon map of downtown Miami in 3D. With funds provided by DawnTown, Clavel-Rojo and Brillhart built a 10 x 10 x 10-foot steel-and-neon box that was activated DawnTownContinued from page 28 Continued on page 32 Miami Glades

PAGE 32

by ropes, pulleys, and neon lights. It went on exhibit at HistoryMiami last March. In 2013, DawnTown launched Landmark Miami, a competition that explored ideas about how cities are immediately recognized through iconic architecture for example, Seattles Space Needle, Pariss Eiffel Tower, and Sydneys Opera House. The brief: Create a similarly striking landmark on a site in Bayfront Park overlooking Biscayne Bay, right where the Isamu Noguchi fountain is currently located. Shulman says it was a great experience reviewing entries that approached the site in different ways: This is the sort of thing we should be doing castEurope its common to have public projects as the subject of competitions. In this competition, some wanted to occupy the site with buildings, others to develop it as public space. The judges felt that the winning design, (the ski jump on steroids) by Dror Benshetrits NewYork-based Studio Dror, succeeded in acknowledging the an iconic monument rather than a pro gram. The eye-catching, ramp-like monu ment would contain exhibition spaces, a theater, a restaurant, and a library. An excavated area beneath the building would create an inlet from the bay. Thinking about Miami excites me, Benshetrit tells the BT The city has a clash of cultures at the connection point between South and North America. The obvious duality of Miami is both physical and metaphysical. Because he was familiar with the Bayfront Park site, Benshetrit had no qualms about replacing the Noguchi fountain rather than working around it. He admires Noguchi but notes, You have to be sentimental to a certain point, but when the context has changed drastically over the years, you also have to be practical and create room for something different in this case, a destination. His cantilevered structure was based and giving it a crease. For instance, a sheet of paper doesnt have structural integrity to stand on its own, but a crease creates strength. Quips Benshetrit: Engineers say you can cantilever as much as you want, as long as you have the budget to do it. The 2013 winning designs, how ever, were not universally well received. On the DawnTown website, DawnTownContinued from page 30 Continued on page 34 Amphibian

PAGE 33

FOR SALE $449,000La Playa Properties Group, Inc. 2275 Biscayne Blvd. Ste 1, Miami, FL 33137 LaPlaya@LaPlaya-Properties.comNow Recruiting Full Time Real Estate Professionals305-672-0773LaPlayaMiami La Playa Properties Group @LaPlayaMiami FOR SALE $390,000 Opera Tower1750 N BAYSHORE DR #1414, MIAMI Amazing renovated 3 bed / 3 bath just west of Biscayne Blvd. Grand living room with vaulted ceilings, wood burning fireplace, 2 new A/C units, new electrical panel, new kitchen w/ all new top-of-the-line appliances, stunning Terrazo floors, beautiful zen-like landscaping perfect for relaxing & BBQs. Corner lot close to Design District, Midtown & more. Walk to Soyka, Andiamo, Sushi Siam, and much more! Near Morningside5801 NE 4 CT, Miami PH: 305.672.0773 FOR SALE $350,000Great Investment Opportunity. Lowest price 2/2 in building by $50,000. Large wrap around balconies. Great Building in the heart of Edgewater. Completely renovated lobby with high end finishes. Minutes from Metro Mover station. Great rental income of $2,200/month.WIND350 S MIAMI AV #2505, Miami Spectacular 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom with views of the bay, river and Downtown skyline. This building features 2 pools, jacuzzi, spa, indoor racquetball court, state of the art fitness center, game room, sports lounge, 2 story party room, and screening room. Located within walking distance to Mary Brickell Village, shopping and dining. FOR SALE $999,900Luxury 2 bedroom, 2.5 bath, corner residence with Biscayne Bay and ocean views. Spacious condo with many high-end upgrades. White marble flooring in living areas, mahogany wood floors in bedrooms, and custom wood closets. Envisioned by Lenny Kravitz for Kravitz Design Inc., Paramount Bay's distinctive residential living experience represents the epitome of refined cool, sophistication, pleasure and peace.PARAMOUNT ON THE BAY2020 N BAYSHORE DR #1801, MiamiLinette GuerraManaging Broker 305-915-0148 FOR SALE $490,000Spectacular Direct Biscayne Views from this spacious 3 bedroom and 2 bath unit. Enjoy Gorgeous Sunrises from this SE corner unit with unobstructed views of the bay, Venetian Islands and Port of Miami cruise ships. Brand new building built in 2012 with bayside pool and gym. This is a Great opportunity to live in the New Luxury Neighborhood of Edgewater.23 BISCAYNE601 NE 23 ST #1203, MiamiRich Tallman Realtor Associate 786-554-2353 Jordan LedermanRealtor Associate 786-300-1550 Linette GuerraManaging Broker 305-915-0148 FOR SALE $335,000Live on the glittering edge of Biscayne Bay in this amazing 1 bedroom / 1.5 bathroom. This breathtaking unit features top appliances, marble flooring, a washer and dryer, an immense balcony. Amenities includes concierge and valet services. Conference room, exercise room, TV Lounge, movie theater, 3 table billiard room and pool. QUANTUM ON THE BAY1900 N Bayshore Dr #3610, MIAMIRudy CastroRealtor Associate 305-310-9656 23 BISCAYNE 601 NE 23 ST #302, MiamiLuigi DevotoRealtor Associate 305-992-4255Live and work from your commercial condo at Edgewater. This spacious 1 bedroom and 1 bath unit is zoned for soft professional use. Also, makes a great great rental income as an investment. Owner says SELL NOW. 23 Biscayne Bay is a full service building with gym, social room and security. Unit comes with 1 parking space.FOR SALE $225,000 FOR SALE $499,000Lowest priced unit at 900, This Direct Biscayne Bay condo offers the best in Condo Living. Enjoy Gorgeous Sunrises from your expansive terrace overlooking the Bay, Port of Miami and cross over to the new PAM, the Miami Art Museum and all the new restaurants on Biscayne Blvd. The time to buy is now at this Exclusive Address! 900 BISCAYNE900 Biscayne #1907, Miami Linette Guerra Managing Broker305-915-0148 PROPERTIES Carlos SerranoRealtor Associate 786-253-9551 FOR SALE $490,000OPEN HOUSE FEB. 8th CALL TO RSVP

PAGE 34

comments ranged from high praise to complaints that the projects were unrealistic and unrealizable, and that none said anything about Miami. More sobering was the fact that the winning project had a previous life in Rio de Janeiro and that other entries also appeared to have been recycled for the DawnTown competition.One question often asked about DawnTown is this: If the designs are so exciting, why havent any of them been taken off the drawing board and actually built? Andrew Frey explains that it hasnt years, the competition concentrated on DawnTownContinued from page 32 The Waterbox NOW OPEN IN MIDTOWN MIAMI 2691 NE 2nd Avenue. Miami, FL 33137 786.600.3910 www.elementofurniture.com Continued on page 36

PAGE 36

public structures, which opened up the possibility that the winning designs could become a reality. But the government agencies involved had neither the budget nor inclination to pursue the designs. With the pumping station, Frey says, we took the winning drawings to the staff at Miami-Dade Water and Sewer andmade a presentation with an attractive display of entries. But we never heard back from them. somewhat, with new windows, landscaping, and paint. But thats a far cry from Helen Pierces design for a giant pulsing sea urchin. Says Frey: They could have chosen to renovate the pump stationin a way that captured the spirit of Miami and expresses pride in our city. DawnTownContinued from page 34 Up-Down-Town Lemonade Square Continued on page 38

PAGE 37

rfntbb rf rfnft brtnn nrnnn rftrn bDont miss out on Miamis most exciting opportunity. Oversized twoand three-bedroom residences from the $240,000s. ntbttbb ttbnttnttn nb r fnttbnttntttnttnt rttbrbttbtbtntbt fntnntb ttbrtbtntnntntnttrtbtbtbtbttb bnntrr ntrttttb bttttnrbt tttttbttttttttbbttrbr ttttttb ttrbrrbtbtbbbnttbt

PAGE 38

Frey notes that Miami-Dade Transit was helpful with the Metromover station design challenge. They gave us a com plete set of drawings to work with and seemed a little more interested, but there was no follow-up, he recalls. I certainly would have appreciated a meeting to say, We like this, rather than no conversation. More recently the station was spruced up and reopened, but there has been no attempt to incorporate any of the winning designs. Betancourt says the DDA would love to see a project take on an afterlife. DDAs master plan includes an iconic cially and technically feasible, built to generate revenue from restaurants, meeting places, and other attractions. The apparent lack of interest may be frustrating, but it hasnt deterred DawnTown. The group continues to grow, and to organize both ideas and design/build competitions, meant to provoke thought and critical dia logue. Miami is a great city to be building in, emerging as a great metropolis, says ar chitect Shulman. And DawnTown is a great model for thinkingoutside the box about how we treat public spaces and how we should be inspired by innovative ideas. Other cities call DawnTown principals to discuss replicating the competition. We can tell them that this is something that can be done with very little money, through generous donations of time and money by people in the community, says Frey. DawnTown has demonstrated the capacity to be a great competition. DawnTownContinued from page 36 r ffntb r bb f nffb br f bt

PAGE 40

40 Community News: BISCAYNE CORRIDORDear Ms. Commissioner: Why Cant WeReach you directly by e-mail? Who else is looking at this message? Why?By Erik Bojnansky BT Senior WriterEnbar Cohen wants to be a fulltime Aventura city commissioner, Although Cohens city e-mail is The e-mails of Mayor Susan Gottlieb Her colleagues on the Aventura City Commissioner Michael Stern tells the BT he has yet to hear receive his or her e-mail within ten minutes of Aventura Magazine Continued on page 44 By Pamela Robin Brandt BT ContributorS festivalgoers, many also from far-off Still, many Miamians miss the little A Festival by Locals for Locals With food, drinks, music, art, and fun, Palette Miami celebrates us Continued on page 42

PAGE 41

By Erik Bojnansky BT Senior Writer BT A coalition of business owners, MiMo Biscayne Association members also tell the BT munity wants, says Nancy Liebman, Its a City Street, Not a SuperhighwayWhen it comes to Biscayne Boulevard, FDOT might beg to differ Continued on page 46 Illustrated concepts by Charles C. Bohl, Jaime Correa, Jennifer Garcia

PAGE 42

Community News: BISCAYNE CORRIDOR BT BT even have e-mail accounts for the mayor ing, since it creates a barrier between Biscayne Times to The BT mails sent to the government accounts of Miami, Miami Beach, Miami Shores, El E-mailContinued from page 40 Continued on page 44

PAGE 43

Community News: BISCAYNE CORRIDOR

PAGE 44

44 Community News: BISCAYNE CORRIDOR the BT city commissioners, but not by that citys communications manager, who then er of Biscayne Times other fun things we now have here in Biscayne Times Biscayne Times local business booths, with wares rangFeedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com Palette MiamiContinued from page 40 E-mailContinued from page 42 Continued on page 46

PAGE 45

Community News: BISCAYNE CORRIDOR

PAGE 46

46 Community News: BISCAYNE CORRIDOR Biscayne BoulevardContinued from page 41 rf nftbrf btb frnb rnftttbtbrnbr brbfnbrn nbttbnrtbtr rnbnbtnfrntf tbbtrnnfrttf tbrnbrtbnfnfbrtbbnr bftbntf OPENING NIGHT TO BENEFIT THE PATRICIA & PHILLIP FROST ART MUSEUM WWW.MIAMIARTANDDESIGN.COM ing for changes throughout the entire MiMo Biscayne Historic District, which Thats when Miami Commissioner Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com BT but not at county ensuring that their e-mail messages how you Commissioner Stern believes the city E-mailContinued from page 44 Continued on page 47

PAGE 47

Community News: BISCAYNE CORRIDOR E-mailContinued from page 46 Nevertheless, Commissioner Cohen again, after this years election on November as four of the seven seats on the city commis theyll see the value in being accessible Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com Mayor Susan Gottlieb City e-mail: sgottlieb@cityofaventura.com Direct e-mail: Skgmiami@gmail.com Commissioner Howard Weinberg City e-mail: hweinberg@cityofaventura.com Direct e-mail: howard@howardweinberg.com Commissioner Teri Holzberg City e-mail: tholzberg@cityofaventura.com Direct e-mail: terhar777@yahoo.com Commissioner Billy Joel City e-mail: bjoel@cityofaventura.com Direct e-mail: billyjoel13@gmail.com Commissioner Luz Urbaez Weinberg City e-mail: lweinberg@ cityofaventura.com Direct e-mail: commissionerluz@gmail.com Commissioner Michael Stern City e-mail: mstern@ cityofaventura.com Direct e-mail: aventuramagazine@aol.comE-mail addresses for Members of the Aventura City Commission Commissioner Enbar Cohen City e-mail: ecohen@cityofaventura.com Direct e-mail: Enbar@enbarcohen.com

PAGE 48

48 Neighborhood Correspondents: MIA M I SHORE SConspiracy Al ert: TenthgateA poorly announced, very annoying road closure and information void bring to mind a certain governorBy Jen Karetnick BT ContributorIf all your media time hasnt been absorbed by the Polar Vortex and its chilling effects even down here in Florida, then youve also probably been following the news about Bridgegate. If you havent, here it is in brief: The scandal concerns New Jersey Gov. Chris to close two Fort Lee toll lanes to the George Washington Bridge. The action was alleged to have been political retribution because the mayor of Fort Lee refused to endorse Christie for re-election. Since the closure was emergency service workers, no measures could be taken to avoid the site. It resulted in employees being hours late to work, teachers and children never making it to school, and ambulances and police vehicles unable to attend calls. The death of an elderly woman is being blamed on the closure. Im fascinated by the story in part because Christie grew up in Livingston, New Jersey, where I was also raised. Christie is my older brothers age; they went to high school together and played hand reports of Christies other bullying maneuvers are coming out, and they stem back to the time when he was just starting out in politics. While I never met the man personally or enjoy politics (or baseball, for that matter), I can attest that his attitude and actions are consistent with many folks of his generation who spent their teenage years in a nouveau riche suburb of New York City: You were either the bully or the bullied. The other reason Im fascinated by Bridgegate is because its lack of transparency so resembles whats happening in Miami Shores. Disclosures, which suppress, started coming out in early December right around the same time that the Shores experienced its own unannounced closure this one of NE 10th Avenue. When I say unannounced, Im not being completely accurate. After days of Shores Village Facebook page, two posts stemming from the Miami Shores Police Avenue from 90th 96th Street for the

PAGE 49

next several hours due to utility work. The Miami Shores Police Department advises you to AVOID this area due to a east 10th Avenue has closed from 96th Street to 90th Street and will require a 6th Avenue as alternates. The second post, on December 5, merely updates this alert, correcting hours to days and the remainder of the day to the remainder of the week . Most of us who live on the northeast 10th Avenue to cut through to the 79th Street Causeway as a way to avoid Biscayne Boulevard had absolutely no idea that the main route to our homes had completely barricaded on 90th Street. The only way for hundreds of residents to get home to several blocks west of 10th Avenue was to thread their way through back streets from behind the CVS drugstore. You can imagine the confusion and the unsafe U-turns. Actually, you dont have to imagine it because you can still experience it. The closures lasted for two weeks, not one, and at press time, (an area that was not included in the alert). South of it, the road is intermittently closed, with detours changing daily and the portion that was patched remaining sunken and pitted. Its not an exaggeration to say that Shores homeowners, suffering inconveniences now for two months, are not rant on Ocean Drive with her husband, and who has to traverse this way daily, says, I wish they had better control of the [stop and slow] signs to control other day, the two kids holding the signs turned them to slow at same time. What a disaster. Lisa Shepherd, another resident, gives what I think is the most succinct comment about the whole mess: Its annoying as @#%#. On the other hand, it will ultimately issues in the area, says Ines HegedusBut therein lies the rub. Aside from ers about the beginning and end of the project, no one seems to know what its about. We noticed large pipes but are involved, even though no trucks are around? And whos responsible? Is it a village concern, or a county one? ity websites have yielded no information. In fact, the last time the Miami Shores website updated its news section appears to have been in October 2013. The sites monthly newsletter offers activities calendars but no news. The text under the websites Public Works category yields nothing as well, except that the Streets and Stormwater Divisions function as a multifaceted spebuilding maintenance, storm water management, and local option (street maintenance) applications. the top of the website is behind the times, notifying residents on December 12 that the Miami Shores police were assisting another agency looking for subjects that about the far more concerning rape and robbery of a woman that took place at Street on December 30. We wouldnt know it from public information disclosures, but her suspected assailant was only recently apprehended, thanks to a little girl he tried to abduct and who partially recalled his cars license plate. An interesting side note: The assault was in the City of Miami, but just a few short blocks south of the Miami Shores line. Was that why the village ignored it? Conspiracy theories welcome. Its probably easier to follow the general. I stopped trying to understand delays years ago. In a way, you could suppose that closures and construction But then, criminals dont bother us here in the Shores. Our way of life is under threat only, apparently, by road construction and utility workers. rfrfn rftbrbfbfrr rrbfbfnfrfr rffrbfr rrfrrbfrnbrf fnfrfffrfbfrrfbrbrfn fftbrf rnbrbbbrbrfnt bnf f r b n f bnnnntnt fr

PAGE 50

50 Neighborhood Correspondents: AVENTUR AWill the Sears U pheaval Re ach Aventura?The venerable chain faces lots of cloud competitionBy Jay Beskin BT ContributorLaugh at me if you will. Sneer at me if you must. Mock me if you cannot contain yourselves. But I will say it anyway, without fear or favor: I like Sears. And I have always liked the Sears store at the Aventura Mall, whether I am there to buy a Lands End shirt, a Kenmore dryer, or a new battery for my car. All of which brings me to the current state of affairs at Sears, which is going through a national upheaval (actually, a multinational upheaval since Canada is foreboding and its naysayers with glee. When 50-somethings like me were growing up, we thought of Sears, Roebuck & Co. as an American institution, about as unshakable a cultural icon as apple pie and as unsinkable a commercial enterprise as Chevrolet. We were aware of the Sears company and, second, as a company with the quaint history of having begun in the form of a mail-order catalogue. Back in 1888, Richard Sears began sending out printed mailers to sell his inventory of watches and jewelry. The post material and charged only a penny per pound. This little bit of corporate welfare gave the R.W. Sears Watch Company a leg up on the competition. The advertis ing also came with the promise, according to the website searsarchives.com: We warrant every American watch sold by us, with fair usage, an accurate time keeper for six years during which time, under our written guarantee we are compelled to keep it in perfect order free of charge. By 1897, Sears circulars were show ing up in mailboxes across the country, with an emphasis in the West, where folks

PAGE 51

ranches, and had no regular access to bigcity shopping. The mailers were now in full color and featured everyday household items for sale, ranging from business suits to baby carriages. Eventually business grew to the point that Sears was building department stores in cities big and small. The Sears catalogue has always been a lovable part of American lore. Hollywood the Sears catalogue up onto the porch of the old saloon and the grizzled proprietor or the dreamy barmaid picked it up and gazed longingly at the big-city luxuries inside. Perhaps this explains why Sears didnt go out of style during the Sixties, when the relentless quest for all things modern turned experience, maturity, and tradition into a drag, and objects of scorn. The history of Sears was romantic, and its trajectory from catalogue to superstore became a symbol of progress. By then Sears had already become the worlds larg est retailer. In 1973, Sears built its version of the Tower of Babel in downtown Chicago; the Sears Tower became tallest free-standing structure in the world, exceeding the goan, I experienced that grand moment of city pride. For many years afterward, visitors to Chicago were told by their hosts as soon as they stepped through the door: You must see the Sears Tower! Any hint of a lack of enthusiasm would put a serious dent into their friendship. Airlines. Sears had originally thought its growing business would generate enough employee hires to occupy all that space, but the opposite happened. There has been a fairly consistent decline in its fortunes over the past four decades. In 2009 the lions share of the Chicago tower was leased to the serves as a monument to hubris. prominent Sears store, which looms large as you drive into the Aventura Mall from Biscayne Boulevard, just north of the Lehmann Causeway? Can I count on it being there for years to come, guarantee ing a quick replacement for my DieHard and fade into our collective memory? Several years ago, the majority interest in Sears was purchased by a hedge fund genius investor named Eddie Lampert, who is based in New Jersey. He had been a whiz trust of some very wealthy folks. He devel nies in which to invest, and he announced to its nationwide network of retail outlets, Sears owned prime real estate in the best locations across the country. Later another super investor, Bruce Berkowitz, acquired a sizable share of Sears Holding for his Fairholme Capital Management funds. Somewhere along the line, someone thought it was a good idea for Sears to buy up Kmart to save that company from bank ruptcy but that purchase hasnt panned out very well. If the people behind the idea thought it was going to create credible them wrong. Maybe it was never doable, or maybe Sears lacked the right team to do it; either way, Kmart has lagged seriously and noticeably behind its competitors. which seems to be the corporate equiva lent of acting as your own attorney in a murder trial. His ideas for the future do look good on paper. He wants to shift more to Internet-based sales and cash in on some of the real estate of the stores that early signs of success in the online Shop discounts and a point system with re wards. The ultimate irony is that Lampert is trying to return Sears to its roots as a catalogue, 21st-century style. Most of the naysayers are writing Sears off as a lost cause. They say its too oldfashioned a name and cant be resurrected in this age of Twitter and Amazon. After all, the young people of today dont even recognize it as old in a good way. Its not modern, but I would suggest a venerable 1800s motif in some of the store furnishings, with a period-piece version of the old Sears catalogue in place of the modern brochures. As most Floridians have learned in their personal lives, old works better as proud-old than as pretend-young. F eedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com rff nfftbf KnightArts.org. ffft rrfntnbrrnb nnbnfn fnf

PAGE 52

52 Neighborhood Correspondents: BRICKELL / DOWNTOWNArt Walk to Food Trucks to Beer LogosWhy do so many Miami events reach a tipping point, then morph into parties?By Adam Schachner BT ContributorCraig Chester, my friend and predecessor at Biscayne Times posed the following question to you readers about two years ago: Have the surging crowds at Wynwoods Second Saturday Art Walk sent the monthly event over a tipping point? I can remember talking about it with him back then as he contemplated the orinto an open streets event by banning motor vehicles on those evenings. When he wrote up the idea in Taking It To the Streets (October 2012), the phrase resonated with me. Had Art Walk reached a tipping point? And what other tipping points exist among Miami happenings? Well, theres one trend I couldnt Wynwood Art Walk pedestrian/street performers/partiers/curious onlookers/ stilt walkers/DJs/sidewalk art vendors/ food-truck boom. Theres something about Miami and other international cities that perpetuates this particular trend though I think one aspect of it may be peculiar to Miami. The Miami Tipping Point, like other tipping points, is abrupt but can be detected as momentum builds. A given endeavor gains notice and traction and bubble bursts. The bubble pop isnt exclusive to Miami. Its generally part of a transformation from chic to pass that can characterize any number of new festivals, new restaurants, or New Yorks hottest clubs. These destinations or attractions wear out their novelty for recognizable reasons: Tickets to a beloved festival become exorbitant as branded bands come to play. A rival high-concept restaurant steals the spotlight with a new twist. The hottest club gets strung out on regular crowds. Now, heres where Miami is different from the rest. We dont run our trends into the ground and leave them there to die. Miami loves to default to a good old-fashioned street party. If a popular attraction is open to adaptation, at some point a food truck will show up, or free drinks will be distributed, and, well, the rest may seem familiar. Our bubbles may pop, but weve still got a party. I agree with the proposal to ease Wynwoods Art Walk congestion by in me feels that any street closure would Photo of artist @808urban by @bryanmiami ZACHARY BELILMy only purpose is to deliver exceptional service and successful results. Call me today for all of your real estate needs.917.319.4627 | zachary.belil@elliman.comSpecializing in the neighborhoods of

PAGE 53

only serve Art Walk if it still predominantly attracts support for the arts. As one reader wrote in response to the open streets idea: To me it has been warped into a mindless food-and-beer fest that has nothing at all to do with art. Once I might have opposed that sentiment, but that was before I came upon a series of Wynwood murals stenciled with logos proclaiming they were sponsored by Heineken. I certainly dont dismiss the cultural value of Art Walk. Wynwood is brimming with galleries and exhibits; its walls are ever expanding and offering brilliant displays. I spend more and more time there on a monthly basis, although less and less of that time falls on the second Saturday. Still, if people show up at Art Walk for the galleries, then Im thrilled to know theres a drive for engaging with the arts. Art Walk is not the sole event on the verge of a Miami Tipping Point. Jen Karetnicks August 2013 BT submission, Ride the High Road, discusses another one Miamis Critical Mass mob-run bicycle events that take place on the last Friday of each month. These monthly rides draw hundreds, even thousands of bicycle riders, and Ive been participating happily in CM for years. Unlike Art Walk, the structural model for CM rides is hard to convey. There are pants can suggest routes and post themes or details on themiamibikescene.com, Mi amis online hub for all things bicycling. There are no owners who advertise or sell losophy of CM rides worldwide. At their core, they all share a common purpose of advocating for bicycling, safe streets, and alternative transportation while encourag ing one another to have fun and onlookers to grab their bikes and join. I think I sensed a tipping point loomriders increased beyond several hundred to several thousand. First, local vendors began to show up with coolers of water for sale. Then they were supplanted by product representatives who began giving away granola bars or new sports drinks. Within several months, the trucks also arrived, tossing bottles of Muscle Milk and coconut water by the jumped onboard in conjunction with the Dutch celebration of Queens Day. The rationale for these rides hasnt changed over the years. So why at some point did I start describing them as rolling street parties? Am I just as guilty of perpetuating the Miami Tipping Point as anyone else? Ride the High Road noted the unruly and rude behavior of some of the CM riders. These people, of course, detract from the advocacy at the heart of a CM ride. And at the same time, theyre Tipping Point a certain detachment them, its not about the celebration of an idea; its just a celebration. CM participants who step up to guide about the event. A bicycle advocate with bicycle around Miami, including bike tours that take riders past Wynwoods street art. When I asked him about the winds of change, his answer was illuminating: Consider advertising, he said. Marketers love things that are hot and popular. CM has had entities try to brand it, such as bike shops, but its been so organic that they cant successfully do it. Perhaps the Miami Tipping Point starts when the brands move in. The free drinks are distributed, the merchandise is given away. Soon the event is another product party and the attendees begin to expect the goods. advertisers havent taken successful ownership over anything. They go from campaign to campaign. They havent successfully branded Art Walk or Critical Mass, but its interesting that they always try. I love it that Miami can tout an art district like Wynwood. Im exhilarated when Im riding among the legions of cyclists at Critical Mass. Still, a part of me hurts a little when I see the emblemalongside product placements. I cant help but feel they tip our icons over an edge and away from their authenticity. Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com

PAGE 54

54 Neighborhood Correspondents: NORTH MIAMI125th Street RisingMore antique galleries than ever, bigger than ever, and more expensive than everBy Mark and Rebecca Sell BT ContributorsBack in March 2012, when Bis cayne Times visited NE 125th Street, we reported that the street was turning a corner (Positively 125th Street). And so it is, especially for that thousandth of one percent that includes antique dealers, New York hedge fund managers, stockbrokers, and celebrities. Those mid-century modern antique galleries between NE 7th and 9th avenues that sell $20,000 tables and such from the Mad Men era have expanded fourfold since early 2012, from perhaps 10 to more than 40. Some are making way more money than before. Rents are up, too, from $12 or $16 per square foot a few years ago to $23 and up today. Does this help the economy? Sure. Lots of money changes hands on 125th Street, and dealers prosper. Does this help the neighborhood economy? Well, not so much yet but wait. Storefronts are changing, getting classier, with more upscale furniture galleries. Youve still got your immigration services; your Sassy Bridal Shop, home to bedazzled bridesmaid dresses; and the Beauty Essentials Hair Salon, where you can get your untouchable weave done ($10 wash, $25 manicure and pedicure for guys; the uniform store; and the rest. Lets see what happens when those leases expire. Every month or so, a newly gussiedup North Miami storefront displaces a barber shop as 125th Street transforms itself into a vintage furniture destination, to quote Marc Corbin, owner of Marc Corbin Inc., an antique gallery. If this seems an unlikely magnet for the rich and famous, think again. These gallery owners are setting up shop here as they did along New Yorks Upper East Side near Bloomingdales, and in Stamford, Connecticut, replicating the commuting patterns of 1960s Mad Men 1980s Masters of the Universe and todays local power brokers. Gary Rubinstein, who owned a gallery on Manhattans Upper East Side for 22 years, has expanded his six-year-old Gary Rubinstein Antiques Miami gallery four fold on the eastern edge of the strip. He Vermillion on the western edge beat him. BT photo by Mark Sell

PAGE 55

This has become a destination street because we have 40 or 50 galleries now. Business has dramatically increased, says Rubinstein. Theres no other, easier way to get from Bal Harbour to I-95. You have to go through here. So if youve bought a condo in the St. Regis for $8 million or $10 million and you want to go to I-95, you go here. Rubinstein, who notes that his clientele is mostly from New York, with some Brazilians coming in, says that hed love to see the sign-happy city post banners proclaiming the strip MidCentury Row. Hes so convinced that the day I opened my doors, he says, and weve gone from 3000 square feet to 12,000 square feet. As an indicator of 125th Streets perhaps the greatest promoter and sponsor of antique furniture, recently became a tenant in the building and set up his corporate headquarters next to Rubinsteins gallery. Rolls-Royce, its tan interior worthy of an Art Basel display, parked across from salon. Over at Vermillion, a party of three left a black SUV, pressed the buzzer, and went inside. One of them was Martha Stewart. Shes a regular on the row. Vermillion, of course, is across the street from the Museum of Contempo rary Art, where a stream of trendyand tweedy-looking New Yorkers of means were passing through the new Tracey Emin exhibit of neon art on the violent passions and ambiguities of love and sex. It runs through March 9. The new Prez Art Museum Miami, Art Basel Miami Beach, and Wynwood may have sucked away the magnetic/ city, and perhaps from MOCA. Yet the proprietors of the furniture galleries say MOCAs presence, while welcome and a big reason they started here, is no longer essential to their allure. Their reputations are being bolstered largely by the luxury website www.1stdibs.com. Those arriving in the SUVs and luxury cars jump out, see what they viewed online, make their deal, and drive on. Maybe they drop by Cane Sucre on the corner at sandwich for about ten bucks, or, if their for folkies, microbrews, and home-cooked food, across from MOCA at the other end. Alas, they dont go to the Moca Caf on the south side of 125th, just west of the museum. Its clientele is largely Haitian, though proprietor Rodney Noel welcomes everybody and would love to see you. Between MOCA and the Moca Caf sits Gustavo Oliveri gallery, whose general manager, Andrew Sabba, reports a steady business but wonders if the neighborhood is approaching saturation. There are more best space, the largest space overall. (Rubinstein asserts the opposite. The New York crowd, he says, is also the Miami crowd.) Oliveri, with locations in New York and North Miami, closed its Miami 2012. We were paying the same for 500 square feet there as we are for 2000 square feet here, says Sabba. So whats the economic bounce like around the neighborhood? On Art Basel Saturday, Moca Caf owner Rodney Noel, with his son in tow, was working the kitchen and helping serve parties of four and seven Haitian families, mostly in his white-linen establishment with a full bar. The vibe is $10 toasted coconut shrimp. A college was playing Christmas pop music. Business has been slow, very slow, he says, with no museum or Mid-Century Row bounce. Hes trying to make his money on events like salsa night at 9:00 day Caribbean music night, and Sunday jazz night ($10 cover). His restaurant received $195,000 in Community Reinvestment Act funds for $15,000). Noel is trying to get enough busi ness in the door to make up the difference. As for service, our $3 lemonade at the bar at 4:00 p.m. Saturday took 20 minutes. So if Mid-Century Row is doing dandy, 125th Street still could use some tender lovin care. Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com

PAGE 56

56 Neighborhood Correspondents: UPPER EASTSIDEI My Local Civic OrganizationsHeres to all our volunteer community warriorsBy Ken Jett BT ContributorAs you buy cards for your childs classmates, or that box of chocolates for someone special, or anguish over how many red roses to send and before you make those Valentines Day dinner reservations for two I challenge you to begin a new love affair, right in your own backyard. Start a relationship with your neighborhood. I began my relationship by necessity, an accidental activist. But living in Miami has given me a robust sense of community involvement. Serving as a board member for two civic organizations over the past three years, Ive now been elected to lead them. Both good people who volunteer precious time trying to improve the quality of life in their communities. Over the course of my service, Ive noticed that the same faces tend to be involved throughout the city. The Upper Eastside has several civic organizations, homeowner associations (which are not civic organizations), and Neighborhood Crime Watch groups. All these organizations have members who work hard to make their neighborhoods better, cleaner, and safer, while policing crime and protecting common spaces. Civic organizations exist in Magnolia Park, Bay Point, Bayside, Belle Meade, Morningside, Palm Grove, North Palm Grove, and Shorecrest, among others. Neighborhood Crime Watch groups are thriving across our neighborhoods. Ive had the opportunity to develop relationships with most of these organizations, and Im always amazed at the dedication, knowledge, and skill sets found among these do-gooders. I brought experience, too, but my involvement has enabled me to hone my interpersonal and public-speaking skills, and create conSometimes Ive witnessed such passionate discourse and strange characters that I could have sworn those involved were reading from a telenovela script. But even the occasional mini dramas (which can be fun, mind you) help keep my coaching and mentoring skills from getting rusty. This Valentines Day, think about how involved you are with your community. Do you know, for example, that these organizations and their interactions with city ofdecisions that affect your daily experiences? This month you can honor that area civic organization and attending a meeting or two to see what you can offer for the betterment of the neighborhood yes, regardless of your already stretched and overcommitted schedule. Do you enjoyBiscayne Times?freeThank You!Producing and distributing a high-quality print publication is expensive. Thats one reason so many newspapers and magazines have folded in recent years.

PAGE 57

I dont mean to get preachy here. This isnt about what you should do. Far from it. I merely want to make you aware of these community warriors and invite you to meet them. If you like what you see, then you can determine your level of commitment before you jump in. Is there something lacking in your neighborhood? Is there a city service not being met or a problem that needs resolution? Is there a community program youd like to see implemented? I cant speak for all organizations, but I know that each member makes ours better. With low membership numbers, we can only respond to hot-button issues. As new members come in, we match their levels of commitment with their interests and are able to do more to improve the quality of life in our neighborhood. More members mean we can add more projects and improvements. New members breathe fresh vigor into the group. There are times when we residents need to request better services, stop accountable. Its through these civic organizations that we can voice our collective concerns. Given the splintering of the Upper Eastside since redistricting, not to mention recent gun violence, impending commercial development, and upticks in the economy, this is the time for more community involvement if you want to help build our future. We have a community liaison in in the Upper Eastside. Now is the time to use that access. Now is the time to lobby our commissioners for assistance. While the board members of civic organizations usually work at the city level, Neighborhood Crime Watch groups work locally, with their neighbors and police. Its interesting to note that while there is some membership crossover, the civic and Crime Watch groups tend to have distinct memberships. Crime Watch groups tend to involve smaller clusters of residents whose block captains communicate across the web of groups within the area. These groups have a pivotal impact providing police with valuable information to aid in the apprehension of area offenders. Since no single city or county depart ment can ever know whats going on throughout the government, and since law enforcement cannot afford to station the civic groups to provide feedback to ees. This communication takes many forms from support on initiatives to re quests for services, from holding depart ments accountable to taking issues to task, and from assisting with the development of community master plans to ensuring adherence to city and county codes. Beyond the personal gain of developing skills and creating relationships with also learned how a large city operates and sometimes fails to operate. Its the closest view of the citys workings you can get without being inside the belly of the beast. It has tested my ability to maintain professional respect for the behaviors and poor decisions of the indiIm suggesting that we can enhance our collective impact for the betterment of the Upper Eastside, and saying that we can use your help, your expertise, and your involvement at whatever level. I recognize that were all extremely busy, but just take a moment to consider activism for your neighborhood. And even if youre unable to participate now, please remember those of your neighbors who are able to volunteer and give their personal time to create a better Upper Eastside for all of us. Hold them fondly in your Valentine heart. organization or homeowner association, 305-795-2330, in person at 6599 Biscayne Blvd. or online at miamigov.com/nets/ to see you at an area meeting soon! borhood Crime Watch groups, ask your local civic organizations or contact Citizens Crime Watch of Miami-Dade County at 305-470-1670 or online at citizenscrimewatch.org. Theyll help you ting up a group on your block. We need your help, dedication, and vision to make the Upper Eastside a place we can all call Home Sweet Home. Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com SUCCESS STARTS HERE DIGITAL www.AllisonAcademy.com AllisonAcademy@AllisonAcademy.com ENROLLMENT

PAGE 58

58 Culture: THE ARTSLarry Poons Bedecks a Nature CenterIf inuences are so overrated, why did the artist keep coming back?By Anne Tschida BT Arts EditorIts easy to remember that some of the best art in South Florida is made by Mother Nature, especially if youre walking up to the Marjory Stoneman Douglas Biscayne Nature Center in Crandon Park on Key Biscayne. The shallow ocean waters, fronted by gentle sand dunes and vegetation, always seem to sparkle. Inside the center itself, a Key West-style building with a huge veranda and courtyard, more art forms can be discovered in small exhibits that reveal the lives of sponges, sea horses, or crabs and their shells. But on this particular Sunday morning, people were showing up to see the art of Larry Poons, considered one of the originators of Op Art and a major stract Expressionist movement. The New York-based artists works are found in numerous museums and private collections worldwide, including MOMA in New York, the Tate Gallery in London, and the Art Institute of Chicago. On this sunny day, his latest colororganically with the surroundings for an ex hibit titled One and Only Just for Nature. However, be careful if you ask the famously irascible artist if Floridas on these new works. Hell let you know can read Tolstoy in Swahili and never know that the author was Russian, that the kitchen table is the only constant in most artists lives, and that art stands on its merits as either good or bad, regardless of where the artist is creating it. And most important, a painting, in the end, is really only about color, not about location or surroundings or culture. Indeed his paintings are all about color, deep, rich color that bounces across the canvas. But those canvases come alive and do relate to the world around them; you can see grass or trees swaying within the abstract framing. Or after observing the display of sea urchins, perhaps be reminded of the ocean swells and the creatures buffeted by them. The colors, while dense, are not psychedelic, again making them tied more closely to the vibrant, but natural, landscape of Key Biscayne. Its a great exhibit for the center. Whether or not the paintings are inspired by Florida, Poons is familiar with the land, the people, and the Nature and used to pass through Miami during Hes even won awards, with his wife, for motorcycle prowess. During one of his stopovers, Poons became acquainted with John Long, who runs a motorcycle shop along the Miami River. John is married to Theodora, who is director of the Nature Center. On this morning during the opening of One and Only Just for Nature, she recounts the story of the centers Photos courtesy of Marjory Stoneman Douglas Biscayne Nature Center

PAGE 59

founding, and of its arts program. Back in 1988, Marjory Stoneman Douglas came hobbling in, she recalls, at the ripe young age of 98, to a center that was basically housed in a hot-dog stand. Douglas was one of Floridas most publishing The Everglades: River of Grass in 1947, which let the world know that the wetlands were anything but a tepid swamp. She thought that the little more funding and a larger home in order front of South Florida. So she successsee the center renamed in her honor, and was introduced. Theodora Long says that public can learn about marine life through exhibits and guides. They can wander the grounds. They can see artworks nature themes. There is, for instance, a profound work hanging in one room commentary. The center is also in its fourth year of offering plein-air painting workshops, which are outdoor, two-day training sessions based on the French countryside tradition of bringing artists closer next session is scheduled for mid-Februsale proceeds going directly to funding most prominent to date. The Longs son, Justin, is an artist who has shown widely in Miami. Hes shown in the past couple of years. He he was about ten years old, an outra geous guy and his motorcycle passed through Miami, and then future trips he started making his own art and was browsing art books did he realize that looked in a book and saw a painting and said, Thats him ? With unkempt gray hair and wearis not going to let anybody get away with making clichd comments about anything at his exhibits opening not fairytales. He argues, forcefully, that a story told in Denmark would not differ dramatically from the same story told in fundamentals are the same. Who knows how the delightful title of the exhibits central painting, My Flying Blue Cat would be translated elsewhere? Maybe in its quirkiness, it would be as place. As Marjory Stoneman Douglas One and Only Just for Nature by Larry Poons runs through April 30 at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas Biscayne Nature Center in Crandon Park, 6767 Crandon Blvd., Key Biscayne; www.biscaynenaturecenter.org. Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com My Flying Blue Cat only

PAGE 60

60 Culture: GALLERIES + MUSEUMS WYNWOOD GALLERY WALK & DESIGN DISTRICT ART + DESIGN NIGHT GALLERIESALBERTO LINERO GALLERY 2294 NW 2nd Ave., Miami 786-286-7355 www.albertolinerogallery.com February 15 through 28: Appraisal by Anya Rubin 2630 NW 2nd Ave., Miami 305-438-0220 www.alejandravonhartz.net Through February 8: Contracture by Pablo Siquier 2242 NW 1st Pl., Miami 305-576-1150 Through February 23: Sceneries by Esteban Pastorino Diaz AREVALO GALLERY 151 NE 40th St., Ste 200, Miami 305-860-3311 www.arevalogallery.com Call gallery for exhibition information ART NOUVEAU GALLERY 348 NW 29th St., Miami 305-573-4661 www.artnouveaumiami.com February 20 through April 18: City Skin by Paula Amundarain BAKEHOUSE ART COMPLEX 561 NW 32nd St., Miami 305-576-2828 February 14 through March 7: Textile for Men and Machine Breakers by Carrie Sieh, curated by Bernice Steinbaum 122 NE 11th St., Miami DWNTWN ArtHouse Through February 17: Peace Off Mind by Frank Haines and Christopher Garrett BLACK SQUARE GALLERY 2248 NW 1st Pl., Miami 786-999-9735 www.blacksquaregallery.com Call gallery for exhibition information BRIDGE RED STUDIOS / PROJECT SPACE 12425 NE 13th Ave. #5, North Miami 305-978-4856 www.bridgeredstudios.com Call gallery for exhibition information BUTTER GALLERY 2930 NW 7th Ave., Miami 305-303-6254 www.buttergallery.com Ongoing: HOX by Douglas Hoekzema Sym City by Yuri Tuma CAROL JAZZAR CONTEMPORARY ART 158 NW 91st St., Miami Shores 305-490-6906 www.cjazzart.com Through February 23: Works on Paper by Carlos Fragoso Through February 26: Alibi by Luis E. Gomez COMMUNICATION 541 NW 27th St., Miami 305-571-1415 www.visual.org Through February 24: Spider Galaxy by Carlos Amorales Asile Flottant by Rirkrit Tiravanija DAVID CASTILLO GALLERY 2234 NW 2nd Ave., Miami 305-573-8110 www.davidcastillogallery.com February 6 through March 29: Tender Game by Luis Gispert ARTS 2043 N. Miami Ave., Miami 305-576-1804 February 8 through April 4: The Rhythm of Materiality by Uisuk Byeon The Visitors by Charlotte Squire DIMENSIONS VARIABLE 100 NE 11th St., Miami DWNTWN ArtHouse 305-607-5527 www.dimensionsvariable.net Through February 28: Trued Surface by Lynne Golob Gelfman DINA MITRANI GALLERY 2620 NW 2nd Ave., Miami 786-486-7248 www.dinamitranigallery.com February 6 through March 28: Dark Continents by Marina Font 187 NW 27th St., Miami 305-573-9994 February 10 through April 30: Haussmannization by Jorge Mio, Eduardo Capilla, and Leopoldo Maler EMERSON DORSCH 151 NW 24th St., Miami 305-576-1278 www.emersondorsch.com Through March 1: Ouroboros by Beatriz Monteavaro Chimera by Saya Woolfalk 2247 NW 1st Pl., Miami 305-448-8976 www.snitzer.com Through February 28: Burning As It Were A Lamp by Enrique Martinez Celaya GALLERY DIET 174 NW 23rd St., Miami 305-571-2288 www.gallerydiet.com Through March 8: scry 2, by Kadar Brock GUCCIVUITTON 8375 NE 2nd Ave., Miami www.guccivuitton.net Call gallery for exhibition information HARDCORE ART CONTEMPORARY SPACE 72 NW 25th St., Miami 305-576-1645 www.hardcoreartmiami.com February 8 through March 8: Tapestries by Raimundo Travieso JUAN RUIZ GALLERY 301 NW 28th St., Miami 786-310-7490 www.juanruizgallery.com Through February 1: Urban Ouroboros by Betsabee Romero February 13 through April 12: Martin C. Herbst KABE CONTEMPORARY 123 NW 23rd St., Miami 305-573-8142 www.kabecontemporary.com February 28: Click by Carla Arocha and Stephane Schraenen (Arocha+Schraenen) KAVACHNINA CONTEMPORARY 46 NW 36th St., Miami 305-209-0278 www.kavachnina.com Call gallery for exhibition information KELLEY ROY GALLERY 50 NE 29th St., Miami 305-447-3888 www.kelleyroygallery.com February 6 through 19:Movin On with Neltje, Janet Slom, Soile Yli-Mayre, and Riitta Klint KIWI ARTS GROUP PROJECT SPACE 117 NE 1st Ave., Ground Floor, Miami 305-213-1495 www.kiwiartsgroup.com Through March 15: i-Miami 2013 by Marc Schmidt LOCUST PROJECTS 3852 N. Miami Ave., Miami 305-576-8570 www.locustprojects.org Through February 20: BOG-MIA by Virginia Poundstone Nobody Knows Me Better Than You by Alan Gutierrez MICHAEL JON GALLERY 122 NE 11th St., Miami 305-521-8520 www.michaeljongallery.com Through March 8: Single Solid Burner by JPW3 MINDY SOLOMON GALLERY 172 NW 24th St., Miami 786-953-6917 www.mindysolomon.com Through March 22: Solid Single Burner

PAGE 61

Culture: GALLERIES + MUSEUMS NNAMDI CONTEMPORARY GALLERY 177 NW 23rd St., Miami 786-332-4736 www.nnamdicontemporary.com February 8 through March 8: Consider This by Gregory Coates PAN AMERICAN ART PROJECTS 2450 NW 2nd Ave., Miami 305-573-2400 www.panamericanart.com Through February 8: For One Night Only by Ricardo Brey February 11 through April 19: Made in Miami with various artists PRIMARY PROJECTS 151 NE 7th St., Miami www.primaryprojectspace.com February 7 through March 23: Into the Rainbow Vein by Magnus Sodamin SPINELLO PROJECTS 2930 NW 7th Ave., Miami 786-271-4223 www.spinelloprojects.com Call gallery for exhibition information SPONDER GALLERY 151 NE 40th St., Miami 305-576-2266 www.bakerspondergallery.com February 7 through March 6: Jonathan Prince TUB GALLERY 171 NW 23rd St., Miami 305-573-0610 www.tubgallerymiami.com Through February 3: Recent Works, Transitory Identities by Sandra Ramos February 6 through March 4: Retrospective by Mark Humphrey UNIVERSITY OF MIAMI GALLERY 2750 NW 3rd Ave., Ste 4, Miami 305-284-3161 www.as.miami.edu/art February 8 through 21: BODYPAINTOGRAPHY: An Exploration of Sentiment, Composition and Body Language by Cynthia M. Fleischmann UNIX FINE ART GALLERY 2219 NW 2nd Ave., Miami 305-496-0621 Through March 4: New York by Ingrid Dee Magidson WYNWOOD WALLS NW 2nd Avenue between 25th and 26th streets 305-573-0658 www.thewynwoodwalls.com Ongoing: Wynwood Walls with various artists ZADOK GALLERY 2534 N. Miami Ave., Miami 305-438-3737 www.zadokgallery.com Through February 28: Fearful Symmetry by Carol PrusaMUSEUM & COLLECTION EXHIBITSARTCENTER/SOUTH FLORIDA 800 Lincoln Rd., Miami Beach 305-674-8278 www.artcentersf.org Through March 16: In His Own Likeness with Othon Castaeda, Rocio Garca, Eny Roland, and Mario Santizo ARTCENTER/SOUTH FLORIDA PROJECT 924 924 Lincoln Rd., Miami Beach 305-674-8278 www.artcentersf.org February 23: Sounding the Everglades by Gustavo Matamoros Through March 23: One Out of One Thousand with Jenny Brillhart, Nicole Doran, Katerina Friderici, Marina Gonella, Gamliel Herrera, Babette Herschberger, Kathy Kissik, Rosa Naday Garmendia, Lori Nozick, Kerry Phillips, and Natalie Zlamalova BASS MUSEUM OF ART 2100 Collins Ave., Miami Beach 305-673-7530 www.bassmuseum.org Through February 23: Time with various artists Through March 16: ESL by Piotr Uklanski 1018 N. Miami Ave., Miami 305-455-3380 www.cifo.org Through February 23: Permission To Be Global/Prcticas Globales: Latin American Art from the Ella Fontanals-Cisneros Collection with various artists DE LA CRUZ COLLECTION CONTEMPORARY ART SPACE 23 NE 41st St., Miami 305-576-6112 www.delacruzcollection.org Ongoing: Looking at Process: Works from the Collection of Rosa and Carlos de la Cruz with various artists Through February 8: Cristina Lei Rodriguez FLORIDA INTERNATIONAL UNIVERSITY FROST ART MUSEUM 10975 SW 17th St., Miami 305-348-2890 February 12 through March 9: Aesthetics & Values with Ray Azcuy, Carlos Betancourt, Antonio Chirinos, Maritza Molina, Ralph Provisero, Carol Prusa, Onajide Shabaka, Kyle Trowbridge, and Michelle Weinberg February 12 through April 20: Capture the Moment: The Pulitzer Prize Photographs with various artists 1301 Stanford Dr., Coral Gables 305-284-3535 www.lowemuseum.org Through February 9: Terrestrial Paradises: Imagery from the Voyages of Captain James Cook with various artists Through April 27: The Art of Panama with various artists MIAMI-DADE COLLEGE MUSEUM OF ART + DESIGN Freedom Tower 600 Biscayne Blvd., Miami 305-237-7700 www.mdcmoad.org Through March 8: (in)tangibility by Lauren Pascarella Through March 29: Rituales en Haiti with various artists Following Your Own Sense of Justice by Leonard Turkel Through July 12: MDC Permanent Art Collection with various artists MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY ART 770 NE 125th St., North Miami 305-893-6211 www.mocanomi.org Through March 9: Angel Without You by Tracey Emin PREZ ART MUSEUM MIAMI 1103 Biscayne Blvd., Miami 305-375-3000 www.pamm.org Through February 23: The Craft of Modernity by Amelia Pelaez Project Gallery: Bouchra Khalili Through March 16: According to What? by Ai Weiwei Through April 20: Yael Bartana Through May 25: A Human Document: Selections from the Sackner Archive of Concrete and Visual Poetry with various artists For Those in Peril on the Sea by Hew Locke Through July 27: Image Search: Photography from the Collection with various artists Through September 28: Monika Sosnowska THE MARGULIES COLLECTION 591 NW 27th St., Miami 305-576-1051 www.margulieswarehouse.com Through April 26: The Margulies Collection at the Warehouse with various artists, curated by Katherine Hinds The Wisdom of the Poor: A Communal Courtyard by Song Dong Calzolari, Kounellis, Pistoletto by Arte Povera Paintings and Sculpture 1986 2006 by Anselm Kiefer Foto Colectania Foundation, Barcelona, Spain, Chema Madoz with various artists THE RUBELL FAMILY COLLECTION 95 NW 29th St., Miami 305-573-6090 http://rfc.museum Through August 1: Chinese: 28 Contemporary Chinese Artists at the Rubell Family Collection with various artists THE WOLFSONIAN FIU 1001 Washington Ave., Miami Beach 305-531-1001 www.wolfsonian.org Through May 18: Bust of a Doctor by Gideon Barnett The Birth of Rome with various artists Rendering War: The Murals of A. G. Santagata by A. G. Santagata Echoes and Origins: Italian Interwar Design with various artists Compiled by Melissa Wallen Send listings, jpeg images, and events information to art@biscaynetimes.com Melissas Pick Melissa Wallen Dog Fight

PAGE 62

62 Culture: EVENTS CALENDAR Culture: EVENTS CALENDARReal Fado, Real SensationFado is the quintessential sound of Portugal, related to its similarly intense, voice of fado is Antonio Zambujo mixes in cadences from North Africa Amalia his name, has toured internationally, and Rhythm Foundation, at the Aventura Arts and Cultural Center (3385 NE 188 Friday, February 7 at Cuban Music, Truly Global Global Cuba Fest Friday, February 7 Saturday, Febru ary 8 The Russians Are Coming Symphony of Psalms Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini From Swampy Love photographer Clyde Butcher holds his the event Saturday, February 15, and Sunday, February 16, at this time, he leads guided tours through Mapping History Saturday and Sunday, February 8 and 9 the Miami International Map Fair

PAGE 63

Culture: EVENTS CALENDARRussia with Love takes place Wednes day, February 12 at the Arsht Center for the Performing Arts (1300 Biscayne Blvd., Miami), at 7:30 p.m. Tickets cost $20; www.arshtcenter.org.An Art Fair Kind of TownMiamis art fairs exist in little architec tural gems, in tents on the beach, on boats, and in the middle of bustling Midtown. From Thursday, February 13, through Monday, February 17 one more addi tion to this list, Art Wynwood returns to Midtown for a second year, with 70 international galleries, not to mention street art. Its an offshoot of the Art Miami enterprise and attracted more than 25,000 visitors last year. (It also coincides with the Yacht and Brokerage Show in Miami Beach.) Here, in a less hectic atmosphere than at Art Basel, you can check out whats new and hot (3101 NE 1st Ave., Miami) for $20; www.artwynwood.com.New Sounds for a New CenturyPerformer, composer, producer, and educator Juraj Kojs could be called an electronic and multimedia artist. The native Slovakian, who makes Miami his home, has been the recipient of numerous awards and has had his compositions featured at festivals and conferences in Europe, Asia, and the Americas. He appears with Signals which runs on Friday and Saturday nights from February 14, to Febru ary 28 The audience can play with the various sounds that Kojs creates rooster calls, ringtones, video game squawks during performances. Signals includes collaboration with a dancer and designer, and is part of the Sandbox Series at the Miami Theater Center (9806 NE 2nd Ave., Miami Shores). Tickets cost $20; www.mtcmiami.org.Some Top-Notch Scotch The Strange Undoing of Prudencia Hart from the National Theatre of Scotland is loosely about a professor who ers as the snow starts to fall. But the Edinburgh Fringe Festival hit puts you in the bar as well, Bar 337, to be exact (337 SW 8th St., Miami, former home of Performing Arts Exchange), to drink and sing along with the cast. Prudencia sets out the barstools from Saturday, February 19, through Sunday, Febru ary 23 at 7:30 p.m., presented by MDC Live Arts. Tickets cost $30; www. mdclivearts.com.Our Animals Need a HomeOn Saturday, February 22 you and your favorite pets are invited to take a mile-long stroll through Bayfront Park (301 Biscayne Blvd.) starting at 8:30 a.m. for a Walk for the Animals awareness event. In fact, you dont even need to bring an animal, but you are encouraged to visit the adoption information and start your own fundrais ing page at walkfortheanimalsmiami.com Compiled by BT arts editor Anne Tschida. Please send information and images to calendar@biscaynetimes.com Songs From the South of AfricaThe music of Soweto, South Africas most famous neighborhood, became for many the backdrop to the anti-apartheid revolution. Now the 24-member Soweto Gospel Choir Music Awards, and an Oscar nomination for Best Song, offers Miami an eclectic program, including gospel, that kicks off Black History Month. The group has latest CD includes collaborations with U2 and Johnny Clegg. The choir begins a North American tour, which includes a tribute to Nelson Mandela, at the Arsht Center for the Performing Arts (1300 Biscayne Blvd., Miami) on Wednesday, February 5 at 8:30 p.m.; tickets range from $35 to $45; www.arshtcenter.org. Saint Martha Yamaha 2013-2014 Concert SeriesPaul Posnak, Founding Artistic Director In their first South Florida appearance, Englands VIDA GUITAR QUARTET perform Manuel de Fallas Millers Dance and El Amor Brujo, Adam Gorbs Yiddish Dances, Malcolm Arnolds English Dances, excerpts from Georges Bizets Carmen, and an amazing all-guitar Rhapsody in Blue. VIDA conjures up an orchestral palette of colour and effects . they play with TECHNICAL BRILLIANCE AND PRECISE ENSEMBLE creating alternately smoky and glittering colours in Fallas El Amor Brujo that suit the gypsy heart of the music so well. Classic FM Magazine Its so easy to imagine youre listening to an entire orchestra . exquisite tonal and dynamic control, super-tight ensemble and unerring musical instinct . THERES ONLY ONE WORD FOR IT: MAGIC. GramophoneVIDA GUITAR QUARTET | Sunday, February 9 at 3pm Duo Duos from Japan and Germany. Duo Yamamoto won the Gold at 12th Murray Dranoff International 2 Piano Competition in Miami. HANS-PETER and VOLKER STENZL won the 2nd Dranoff Competition and have illustrious international careers. Together they will feature classics, jazz, and musical surprises, including our commissioned Martha and Mary Meditation. Hear them at duoyamamoto.com aand stenzl-pianoduo.net. DUO YAMAMOTO & THE STENZL BROTHERS Sunday, March 2 at 3pm TO PURCHASE TICKETSVisit saintmartha.tix.com or call 1-800-595-4849 or purchase at church office or at door. More info. 305-458-0111 and 305-751-0005. All programs are subject to change without notice. Friend us on Facebook! Saint Martha Concerts Saint Martha in the Shores 9301 Biscayne Blvd., Miami Shores

PAGE 64

64 Columnists: POLICE REPORTSBiscayne Crime BeatCompiled by Derek McCannWhen your Annoying Relatives Call.NE Miami Place and 62nd Street Going for a walk in Miami can be pleasant with those palm trees and that beautiful wintery breeze; however, you probably should carry dollar bills to appease the locals. A shabbily dressed man approached our victim asking for a buck and was refused; he then asked to use the victims cell phone and was told the phone wasnt working. But the phone rang, much to the disgust of the vagrant who then wrestled him to the ground and punched him several times, even pulling out a gun! He demanded and got the phone, but not the dollar. No arrests have been made, sadly teaching us that the Miami stroll has become just another anachronism.Wing that Presentation Now in Your Stinky Clothes1600 Block of N. Bayshore Drive Staying at the Marriot is great unless you need a smoke; hotels have become so fussy about that carcinogenic habit. This so he just opened the sliding glass door and walked around the area to enjoy his cigarette. Unbeknownst to him, however, someone was watching the whole scene and entered the swanky room and took his laptop. Laptops are just meant to be stolen, it seems, so we should always have that old desktop handy in the closet. police theyll all have to wait for the video while our thief catches up on the Grammys on YouTube. And our victim likely lit up many more that day after this incident.A Miami Story Heard Too Often200 Block of NE 25th Street The rents have risen in our transient wonderland, but people still want to a good roommate once your sister gets married. Victim had lived with this stable roommate for over a year, and things seemed quite tranquil. One day without warning, the roommate was gone, as well as much of the victims belongings; the roommates whereabouts, like most Miamians once they abandon ship, are not known at press time. Victim contaminated the scene anyway with her hands and now has to resort to sabotaging her sisters marriage to cover her overpriced rent.Paranormal Activity Tryouts in Miami6500 Block of NE 5th Avenue Sometimes our criminals dont make much sense; they just want their COMPLETE BUSINESS SERVICES 12555 Biscayne Blvd. North Miami, FL 33181-2597 Tel: 305-895-6974 | Fax: 305-891-2045 Email: ppspost@earthlink.net T.M.Est. 1980

PAGE 65

presence to be known: Hear me roar! The victim left her home early two days in a row for work and returned later only were opened, the lights were turned on, and her dog was roaming about, having been let out of his cage. Either that is a trick dog or they need to start installing hidden cameras in that house. Perhaps we will get some cool footage of that might just get another lame criminal lighting up his crack and petting little Fido. No arrests have been made.Swat Team Will Wait for the Next Call100 Block of NE 79th Street called, for better or for worse; these brave men and women risk their lives at times to ensure a safer Miami, or at least A man who lives alone left his wallet on the dining-room table and left for the day (without taking any money or ID, I guess), and when he returned, the wallet was gone. No sign of forced entry and no evidence of a break-in at this time; the his wallet, so why not call 911? After doubt if they gave him access to the elite K-9 unit.Now We Know the Answer to the Prior Report401 Biscayne Blvd. Everyone wants to be a big shot because Scorsese movie. This wannabe ordered drinks through the night and, I guess as a demonstration of what a deal maker he was, placed his wallet on the bar, likely to demonstrate how big it was; I guess wallets that hold one credit card. In the process of ordering a new round, sudties disappeared. Between self-absorbed victims and Houdini perpetrators, this is a story repeated far too often; guess the dining-room table sounds better.Progress Is Not Perfection for EveryoneNE 2nd Avenue and NE 5th Street need to jaunt around town for necessary life functions. Much as drivers may fantasize about knocking them off the road, they have their place in our Miami living. This student rode his bike and chained it to a signpost and then registered for classes; with the price of books, better not to have a car payment. When he returned to get his bicycle, thankfully it was still there, a Miami delight. But there was still a bite from our crime brethren as the bicycle seat was Monty, you remove one little article to At Least They Still Can Advertise Color Television5100 Block of Biscayne Boulevard We love our famous Boulevard Motels the years. An employee who gets free room and board decided that this was not enough and went to another apart ment and pulled out the air-conditioning unit from the wall; we guess his room ticket request for that? There is video surveillance everywhere and police were called to arrest him, but he had left his room and was on the run; why canvassed the area and no arrests have been made, but hopefully for him, that unit can be pawned for a piece of his future bail money.Not Like the Movies Anymore4700 Block of Biscayne Boulevard For years Americans have followed the pursuits of bandits who steal that infaquest, such named case, according to the prospective clients sitting across from him asked for water. The victim, thinking a big deal was about to go down, fetched them the water but returned to see that the great heist had occurred. The conquering robbers did make their score, but how many tens of thousands were in that bag? They got to split $110 in U.S. tons of cigarettes, by the way. The poor economy is hurting our anti-heroes too. Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com rfntbb bbrrbrr br877.771.2670 gutter cleaning roof washing pressure washing window cleaning

PAGE 66

66 Columnists: PARK PATROLA Paradise of Blue and GreenEnjoy serenity, a playground, and panoramas next to the Rickenbacker CausewayBy Jim W. Harper BT ContributorI thought Id seen all the good places along the waterfront, but then along came Alice. Not the drunken Alice in Concreteland whom I met in Bayfront Park a few years ago in this column no, this is a serene, greener Alice from Coconut Grove, with the pedigree of Vizcaya. Lebron James admires Alice so much that he visits her garden to play pickup games. Geologists praise her rock collecStop the Lebron wagon did someone say cliffs them and climb them at Alice C. Wainwright Park. Its strikingly unique and beautiful, and it earns my highest ranking for a park run by the City of Miami. mercial here for Nike that shows him dribbling with kids on the shady court; in reality he lives not far away on the waterfront. Even closer are envyinducing mansions along the secluded street leading to the park. (I want to live here so badly, I might start playing the lottery.) The neighborhoods big kahuna is Vizcaya itself, which you can see from the parks seawall. The parks only real drawback is also its secret advantage a dead-end street with little parking. On weekends do not drive here. Run. But on weekdays, when the weather paradise of green and blue. Alices park is the opposite of the Dolphin Expressway, the anti-expressway. It makes you feel sorry for people who dont live here. Situated at the busy crossroad of the Rickenbacker Causeway with the mainland, the park is buffered from noisy most of its 21.44 acres. You know the bushy area on your right as you approach the Rickenbacker tollbooth? Thats it. You cant see much from the road. Trail, the roads around the park attract joggers and cyclists. To get there by car (on a weekday), turn east onto the road immediately north of Vizcaya. Enter the park through a black metal gate located in the center of SE 32nd Road. Aging bathrooms and water fountains are provided, but only one of the three fountains functioned when I visited. Homeless people appear to have semi-permanent status in this section, as evidenced by scattered suitcases and paraphernalia on the picnic tables under mature oak trees. Otherwise, litter is surprisingly scarce, especially in the bay waters, where I expected to see it smothering the seawall. Some force is keeping it clean could it be the princes of Miamis Bel-Air? Families appreciate the basketball court and clean playground, completed in 2010 and surrounded by open grass. Also in 2010, a series of exercise stations were installed near the bay. But the real attraction is the view. Standing on the Atlantic Ridge, the high ground of Miami that attracted its earliest inhabitants, you look down at the panorama of the open bay and ocean beyond. As if perched on a billionaires veranda, you hover more than ten feet above sea level. Walking toward the bay, you encounter a jagged cliff that drops abruptly. Dont jump! This natural limestone formation is part of the Miami Rock Ridge, more poetically known as Silver Bluff, which dates to 125,000 years ago. I actually saw children climbing on these cliffs (rock climbing in Miami!), and natural steps and paths make them easy to navigate with strong shoes (not stone will cut bare feet to shreds. Full of fossils, the cliff features linear tube-shaped formations that were constructed by an ancient burrowing shrimp, reminding us that this location was underwater in the distant past. Made of Miami, or oolitic, limestone, the cliff extends northward for about 300 feet before disappearing into the soil. Below the cliff is the parks newest May 25, 2012, its stone benches and memorial plaque were donated by Team Stand Up and Reach Miami. The parks prime real estate along the waterfront is a grassy meadow about 50 feet wide that takes a sharp turn left and continues for several hundred feet to the causeway. This strip joined to the BT photos by Jim W. Harper ALICE C. WAINWRIGHT PARK 2845 Brickell Ave. (entrance on SE 32nd Road) Miami, FL 33129 305-856-6794 Hours: Sunrise-sunset Picnic tables: Yes Barbecues: Yes Picnic pavilions: Yes Tennis courts: No Yes Night lighting: Yes Swimming pool: No Playground: YesPark Rating Rickenbacker Causeway Brickell Ave

PAGE 67

opening makes a giant L-shape. With no obstructions, the simple seawall frames a spectacular view of blue. Key cant compared to the open water around it. Heres where the barracuda and the needle Shallow Biscayne Bay blends seam lessly into the deep Atlantic Ocean. Colorful sailboats hover in the distance. To your left are bridges over still waters, to your right is Mercy Hospital. Closer still is the bizarre stone barge, part of Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, that perches in the Unlike that estate, which costs $18 to enter, this view is free. pavilions attract many users, while the three large wooden pavilions, tucked away in a woodsy corner, stand empty. Here a pair of jeans lies across one table. On the Last year the park won the category for Best Picnic Spot from the New Times the Miami City Commission; Wainwright was also a champion of the environment. Given its central location, the park probably holds many secrets. Snooping around under the Australian pines near the causeway, I found a vinyl record. Produced in Hialeah, it offers 30 exitos de ayer y de hoy. Violines de Pego cially prohibited. They bring dogs, which is allowed or not, depending on which sign you believe. But mostly they bring their kids. A white-haired woman brought a chair and a book, and settled into the grass near the bay under the shade of a giant coconut palm. With the cliff behind the picture of peace. Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com MIAMI, FLORIDA MONSIGNOR EDWARD PACE HIGH SCHOOL G R A T I A E T V E R I T A S beautiful 56 18 Monsignor Edward Pace High SchoolEnroll Today!Be a part of the Spartan tradition!Online at www.pacehs.com/admissions @PaceSpartans We are PACE! Partners Academics Catholic Empowerment

PAGE 68

68 Columnists: ALL THINGS ANIMALLife Lessons from the Snake Slayer Moving on is simple, but its not easy By Wendy Doscher-Smith BT ContributorSome years ago I lived a few hours north of Miami, where I rented a quaint guesthouse from a friendly, dog-loving couple. One day a curious, perhaps confused, smallish black snake slithered onto the patio. So I fetched the owners of the main house. Out they came, only too happy to investigate. With a shovel in hand. Unsure as to why the shovel joined the party, I became uneasy and immediately regret ted summoning them. Amiable as these folks were, I knew they didnt mess around when it came to their property and anything that might pose a threat to it or, I suppose, its inhabitants. This fact, I concluded far too late, extended to snakes. I tried to thwart the upcoming bloodbath. Oh, hey! You know what? Never mind. Im sure its not poisonous. Ill just get a bucket and Too late. Without hesitation, they opened the screen door and, upon discovering what was most likely an innocuous garden snake, proceeded to chase it outside and smash it repeatedly with the shovel. I stood about three feet away from the spray of exploding reptilian brain bits, cringing and yelling, Stop! Enough! Christ! Its DEAD! Smashsmashsmash. Talk about overkill. quick, and violent actions of my landlord Snake Slayer that day, I did learn a few life lessons. The most important lesson but its not easy. I shall now impart this wisdom unto you. Ready? Here it is: Move on. This concept of moving on is one Ive never embraced and, in fact, always avoided. One reason is that, true to my Cancerian roots, I dont like change. Also Im very loyal, sometimes to a fault, which also not a new-age, Namaste-chanting type who prides herself on ever evolving, a process that for some reason requires end mtcmiami.org (305) 751-9550Spring Break Theater CampWhile schools out, well keep your kids entertained with theater games, improvisation, acting, music, and dance.March 24, 2014 9 am 4 pm $200.00 for ve days Ages 6 12 Registration also open for Musical Theater Summer Camp Session 1: June 927, 2014 Session 2: July 14Aug. 1, 2014 BT photo by Wendy Doscher-Smith

PAGE 69

outlets. Much like some lizards that auto matically regenerate new tails once theirs are ripped or chewed off, these people really know how to, you know, move on. And for that I do give them credit. The reason I bring this up is because its time for me to move on from contributing to Biscayne Times As someone who has served as a columnist, neighborhood correspondent, news reporter, and photographer for this paper for eight years or so, this is a decision I ruminated about quite a bit and did not take lightly. But to put it bluntly, as another saying goes, shit happens. As I retraced my steps, reminiscing over the assorted topics I addressed, I realized that my monthly contribution or contributions to this paper have remained the one constant in my life throughout the majority of the past decade. This, frankly, freaked me out. Thats a big chunk of my life. I became a groomer, rented and owned houses, moved from Miami and returned, experienced the devastating loss of a handful midlife crises, and was chased out of my bathroom by a palmetto bug that left me no other option but to relieve myself in an aluminum pot while my dogs, clearly puzzled, watched. And it is all documented in this papers archives. I moved from Miami to Binghamton (or as I refer to it in my archived columns, the MUFT, or Merciless Un-Frozen Tundra), New York, and continued writ ing material that resonated with Miam ians, even though I crafted the copy while cursing dirty snow piles outside despite the heat being set at 78, because, dammit, it never warmed up there! Likewise, I never warmed up to living in the great Popsicle of the Northeast. So I spent two winters in Miami, living in a condo on Brickell while my husband re mained in the MUFT. From there I wrote about anything Miami-esque, including the strange habits of my fellow condo dwellers, ghosts in the elevators, waking up to a helicopter whirring outside the balcony of my high-rise apartment, and other notables. Eventually my husband secured a job back in Miami, and all of us (animals included) lived together again. Being a native Miamian makes me unique by default. There arent many of Visit our contemporary Lighting Showroom 305.423.0017 us. I think growing up here offered me a perspective on the city that most never had and cant attain, as well as a healthy appreciation for oddities. From the start, and even while addressing newsy items, I infused my columns with humor. This approach earned me fans and enemies alike. Such is the life of an opinionated writer. Not everybody shares the same sense of humor. Hell, some people have no sense of humor. In any case, BT readers could and did say many things about my little yarns, evidenced by feedback published in the Letters section. Many things, that is, except that they were boring. So I consider my run at the BT a success, and am grateful for the opportunity to voice an opinion, which, at or traveled outside the box. (What is it with all these paper goods metaphors for expressing creativity?) Thank you to everyone who read my rants. While my time with the BT is coming to a close, I am by no means going to shut up. (Sorry!) Writing is a fate that chooses you, as opposed to the other way around. It chose me when I was in grade school and Ive been at it ever since in nearly every format available. The format that I most enjoy and seems to suit me best is that of a humorous essay. And I will keep writing them. While I have addressed a variety of topics in my years of humble servitude to this paper, there are many other subjects I never typed a word about, and I am more than ready to spout off about now. For ex.: pro basketball. Huh? No, really. After seemingly popping out of the womb as a proud and adamant selfproclaimed hater of all things involving a ball or ugly uniforms (just ask my college roommates about my temper tantrums during football season at UF), I am what my husband calls a Miami Heat Super Fan. I dont know about that, but So, yeah. Ill be around. On Tumblr. On Facebook. On Fox News. (Gotcha!) And while parting from the BT is, as one famous writer once said, such sweet sorrow it is also, I realize, to quote yet another not-sofamous poet, my former Landlord/Snake Slayer, indeed time to move on! Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com

PAGE 70

70 Columnists: PICTURE STORYBy Paul S. George Special to the BTOne of Greater Miamis signature buildings is the Miami News/ Freedom Tower, which served newspaper, the Miami Metropolis later known as the Miami News Later, the building housed the Cuban Refugee Assistance Center. The building was designed in the mid1920s by the stellar New York architectur designed the Biltmore Hotel, the Breakers in Palm Beach, and downtown Miamis Ingraham Building. The architects used the inspiration for their design. Upon its completion in 1925, the building, stand ing 279 feet tall, was the tallest structure After the Miami News moved to a location on the Miami River in 1957, the building was sold and was sparsely occupied in subsequent years, before the federal government leased it in 1962 and operated it as the Refugee Assistance Center until 1974. Many of the hunCastros Cuba in the 1960s and 1970s received assistance there, services that ranged from medical care to clothing, food, and employment assistance. After the program closed in 1974, the building fell into dis array. Its fortunes began turn ing around in the late 1990s, and especially after 2005, when Miami developer Pedro Martin, its owner at that time, awarded it to MiamiDade College. The college has spent vast sums restoring the building to its original splendor. Today the Freedom Tower hosts college and civic events as well as art ex hibits, and its future appears as bright as the beautiful lights illuminating it nightly. To order a copy of this photo, please contact HistoryMiami archives man ager Dawn Hugh at 305-375-1623, dhugh@historymiami.org. Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com Photo courtesy of HistoryMiami, 2001-376-281 Life and Times of the Freedom TowerA view of our past from the archives of HistoryMiami

PAGE 71

Columnists: YOUR GARDEN Surprise! That Weed Is Delicious!Just be sure you can ID what you pick By Jeff Shimonski BT ContributorEver since I was a young boy, Ive enjoyed a good fresh salad. It never ceases to amaze me, all of the different ingredients you can mix into a salad. One of my favorite salads is a cucumber salad. Both my grandmother and mother made them for dinner oc casionally, and I would always ask for more, without all the onions, of course. These days I like to try lots of differ ent fruits and vegetables, even a bit of protein, and I always enjoy trying new salad dressings that complement the great fresh ingredients. The accompanying photo is of minicucumbers in a strainer basket; theyve just been cleaned after being freshly picked out of my garden. Id always wanted to try eating these cute little fruits, but when Id go to look them up in the literature, Id often read warnings about their purgative effects on ones digestive tract, especially when the fruit was ripe. The plant is Melothria pendula or creeping cucumber. This is a common that is often found growing in fullsun locations. They often grow on top of other plants, along fences, or even atop stuff lying about in a messy yard. There are a number of species of this mini-cucumbers found around the world; several of them are supposed to be edible straight from the vine or pickled but just in case, the species that ripens to a black color can make you ill, or so the literature says. Now, its important to be careful when handling something unfamiliar, especially a food item. But over the years, especially with many of the so-called toxic plants or plant parts, its hard to the claim of its toxicity. So in the interest of science, of course, I decided to test the fruit myself. At the start of my experiment, I picked a single ripe, shiny green fruit and bit it in half. Out squirted this fresh and delicious cucumber taste with just a tiny hint of bitterness. Over the course of a few days, I ate the fruit from several different creeping cucum ber plants and never experienced any negative side effects. Be cautious, however. There are some local weedy vines that may appear similar to creeping cucumber, so make sure you know what youre looking at because some of them may be toxic. Of course, the real test of edibility was to host a dinner that featured a salad with the mini-cucumbers in it. So I persuaded my favorite chef, Monica, to concoct a salad featuring this fruit. One night we had for dinner, just the two of us, a salad and a nice chilled bottle of Pinot Grigio. Knowing that I like lots micro-greens of kale and spinach, small slices of watermelon, mini-tomatoes, Parmesan cheese, and prosciutto, and topped all these ingredients with a vinaigrette dressing made of a pomegranatebalsamic glaze. It was delicious, and I up the next morning and realized there were not going to be any ill effects from eating all those mini-cucumbers. periment was to test the mini-cucumber salad on a larger cohort, more precisely, at a dinner party with ten guests. Chef Monica whipped up another great salad. This time it consisted of romaine hearts, almonds, pomegranate seeds, and Vidalia onion vinaigrette. The salad with the mini-cucumbers was a hit. I even took some to lunch the next day. I should admit here that Id been feeding this cute little vine to several orangutans and baboons at a famous park for a number of years. Theyd eat the entire vine, including the foliage, but they really preferred the fruit. When Id give them a very large handful of vine, theyd meticulously pick out and eat the With all the rain weve been getting recently, creeping cucumber has been plentiful, and so have other, similar vines. Be very careful when youre picking fruit to eat. The foliage for creeping cucumber is very distinctive, a bit coarse and with a not-unpleasant scent. Ive never grown it on purpose, knowing very sunny locations, but Im quite sure it can be grown in a container, in quantity, on a wire frame. It would make a great plant for a sunny and windy balcony or porch alongside your mini-tomatoes. In my travels to various local properties to inspect trees, Ive come across a few unusual species of vines with edible fruit, and Ill write about these in future garden columns. ipal arborist, director of horticulture at Jungle Island, and principal of Tropical Designs of Florida. Contact him at jeff@ tropicaldesigns.com. Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com BT photo by Jeff ShimonskiMelothria pendula

PAGE 72

72 Columnists: KIDS AND THE CITY Scout-a-rama Mama DramaWithout their fearless leader, this troop shinedBy Crystal Brewe BT ContributorLast Friday night, 13 Girl Scouts descended on my house with supplies for a 24-hour Scout-a-rama. The agenda was tight, but we were determined to pack it in. There was chore to build, hot dogs and smores to cook, songs and skits, and preparations for our front-yard pancake breakfast fundraiser the next morning, where we expected 50 parents, friends, and neighbors. Meet the Girl Scout leader: me. Every time I tell people Im the leader of my daughters troop, they giggle. I know, I know. Scouting. Youre thinking anti-gay undertones and religious overtones. Well, think of the Girl Scouts as the Boy Scouts smarter, more liberal sister. The mission of Girl Scouts is to build girls of courage, world a better place. I was a Girl Scout, and the most diverse and adventurous memories of my childhood came from the experience. My mother led my troop, and we took on the world. We marched in parades, went horseback riding, camped, took bowling lessons (I know, weird huh?), sold cookies, visited the zoo, visited nursing homes, visited the humane society, and once we even visited the dump. These memories are punctuated by badges sewn onto a vest that now sits in a closet, but what stuck with me was grew. At the time I thought, if I can earn a badge in all these things, I can rule the world! Did you know that 70 percent of the women serving in the U.S. Senate were Girl Scouts? That 80 percent of women business owners, 67 percent of the female members of the House of Representatives, and nearly all the female U.S. astronauts in space were Girl Scouts? I am no astronaut, but I am a working mom. My co-leader and I joke that the other moms think were Troop Beverly Hills, but in reality were the working-mom-run troop. These other troop leaders work hard on their troops. For many of them, its like a full-time girls earn gold and silver awards, take on monumental service projects, earn scholarships, go abroad on scouting trips, and get into college. My mom once told me the only reason she spent so much time on the scouting thing was to get the other girls to trust her. Seriously, it was like the long con of the century. Imagine: You spend years get ting little tykes to trust you so that at the age of 16 theyll sell your daughter up the river when you ask, Are those her ciga rettes? or Where was she at 5:00 a.m.? All right, admittedly this Girl Scout had a checkered past. While I dont think Ill need the long con, there is something appealing about getting to know the girls who are helping shape my daughters childhood. While Ive been at it, Ive met some pretty great Im able to address issues and decisions with them in a constructive and positive way. As the parent of a nine-year-old girl, I know that the countless eye rolls can eradicate the words constructive and positive from most situations. So back to the Scout-a-rama. We spent weeks planning a campout agenda, sat in disbelief that our South Florida girls were soundly sleeping outdoors in the tent in the 50-degree night air. At midnight my husband and I pitched our two-man tent right next to the girls tent and I fell asleep thinking about the last college spring break trip to Lake Havasu that the tent experienced. At 4:30 a.m., I awoke to cold sweats, fever, violent tremors, and six-foot swells ber after making it back to my bedroom is trying to yell, Refer to the lists and map in my briefcase! to my husband, who now realized hed have to put on a pancake breakfast fundraiser for 50 by himself. Guess what? My getting sick, while annoying to my hubby, was the best thing that could have happened to the girls. I have a faint memory around 7:00 a.m. of them passing by my bedroom window yelling, Heave-ho! while carrying a stack of chairs. They took control and worked together. They rolled their own sleeping bags, set up the tables, made the signs, griddled every one of our neighbors came out for the and troop parents pitched in without being asked, and this might be a rumor, but I even heard that one of our grumpier neighbors When 13 girls rally behind somedo anything. Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com Traditional Taekwon-Do Instruction NOW ACCEPTINGNEW STUDENTSAges 5-Adults, All levels of Experience. Free uniform and private introductory class with enrollment.786-493-409 5 9617 Park Drive Miami Shores, FL 33138786-493-4095Visit us online at www.chitkd.orgITF affiliated school with over 20 years instructional experience.

PAGE 73

Columnists: GOING GREENRaise a Glass to the River of GrassThe Everglades gives us some of the nations cleanest drinking waterBy Jim W. Harper BT ContributorThank you, Everglades. Thank you, limestone. Every time you drink a glass of water, take a moment to appreciate its origins. South Florida has some of the best water in the nation, and some of the worlds most productive aquifers. Its a miracle of nature that deserves more attention. A lot of people dont know where their water comes from, says Ren Price, a hydrogeologist and associate professor at Florida International University. They need to realize that the Everglades is the lifeblood of Miami. That water you drink from the tap? It pooled in the River of Grass and percolat ed through the limestone beneath it. Have you thanked your ecosystem today? If you look at other places within a simi lar latitude Baja California, Saudi Arabia, Libya youll wonder why Florida isnt a desert. These places, like Florida, have extensive shorelines, but theyre bone-dry. Many elements came together to create this unique peninsula with plentiful fresh water, the worlds most essential resource. The foundation comes from Africa. Eons ago, before the continents divided, Florida was wedged in between Africa and South America as part of the supercontinent Gondwana. It eventually drifted into North America. For most of history, sea level was much higher, and most of Florida was an oceanic ledge. Ancient marine organisms discarded or built their shells on the layer became compacted as the sediment feet. At more than 1000 feet deep, this layer holds the Floridan Aquifer, which runs throughout much of the state and serves much of northern Florida. In South Florida, however, the aquifer runs too deep and salty to be of much use. But we may need it in the future to abate salt water intrusion from sea level rise. Salt water has already ruined the freshwater supply of the City of Hallandale in Broward County, which must import its drinking water. Miami-Dade County was wise to place its supply wells far from the coastline and close to the Everglades. That investment, made a few decades ago, may have been Miamis smartest moment. Across South Florida, the main source of drinking water is the Biscayne Aquifer, less than 250 feet below ground. Above it sits an incredible system of small caves and porous limestone that allow rainwater to settle in a matter of minutes. The same is true of the oil that spills and into our supply of drinking water. You drink what you spill. (Well, not exactly, since it undergoes treatment, but who wants to start the process with dirty water?) As its name implies, the Biscayne Aquifer connects with the bay and the ocean. With less water pressure from above, owing to dry conditions or excessive usage, more saltwater seeps into the system from below. You can do your part to prevent saltwater intrusion by using water wisely. Always try to conserve water, says Price. We just ended a six-year drought in 2012. This six-year pattern, which follows the cycle of El Nio, suggests that the next six years should be relatively wetter. But such assumptions could be upended by climate change. To help us appreciate our source of water, Rice offers an experiment: Go and break it into pieces or scrape it. Then look closely. Do you see tiny chalky dots everywhere? Those compacted dots are called oolites (pronounced oh-uh-lights ). The spherical grains of calcium carbonate become exposed and solidify over time, and form oolitic limestone, the rocks in your backyard and under your building. While Miamis oolitic limestone formed ages ago, today a similar process is hap pening in the sand banks of the Bahamas. Many residents mistakenly call Miamis near-surface limestone coral rock, perhaps because its many pores resemble those of coral fossils. Local rock created primarily by coral skeletons is called Key Largo limestone. But most of the limestone below your feet comes not from coral, but from non-living oolites. Thank your lucky oolites today for Lastly, we must thank the Miami-Dade Water and Sewer Department for delivering a consistently good product. Our tap water is high in quality and low in price, despite what your neighbors might say. Google it. Tap water deserves your support but bottled water doesnt. Sitting inside a plastic shell for unknown amounts of time, bottled water creates waste that we can do without. Bottle your own tap water. Water is the ultimate renewable resource, and the Everglades watershed is one of the worlds greatest suppliers of clean, abundant fresh water. We should be grateful to be living near a swamp instead of a desert. Raise a glass (of water) to the River of Grass. Send your tips and clever ideas to: goinggreen@biscaynetimes.com. Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com Accounting and Income TaxStudents, Singles, or Married with W-2sTaxes for just$45*Promotion Expires 4/15/2014Taxes for just$115*Promotion Expires 4/15/2014Self-Employed Independent Contractors Freelancers INDIVIDUAL AND CORPORATE TAXES Bookkeeping Payroll Form New Corporations Notary PublicMiami Financial Center12573 Biscayne Blvd. N Miami, FL 33181786.329.995022 years in South Florida English & Russian spoken

PAGE 74

74 Columnists: VINO By Bill Citara BT ContributorSophistication, thy name is France. Or so it seems, anyway. The French practically invented haute couture; the most storied fashion houses Chanel, Dior, Louis Vitton, Herms are all French. In art and architecture, names like Czanne and Renoir, Monet and Gauguin, the Eiffel Tower and Versailles are worldrenowned. French women not only never gain weight, they possess an unerring style and ineffable beauty, while French men display a casual, effortless cool matched only by Bond, James Bond. Of course, French cuisine is the basis for virtually all modern cooking, and still sets the world standard. And even the most casual wine drinker knows the hallowed names of Latour, Haut-Brion, Margaux, Cheval Blanc, all organized in a rigid caste system that has endured for hundreds of years. But really, not everything French is that sophisticated. French cars are pieces of junk or junque if you prefer. French cigarettes smell like burning camel dung. French movies are torturously murky, intermi nable affairs, the cinematic equivalent of waterboarding. And while at its highest more typical French fare can be much less so. I once spent a week touring the tony chteaux of Bordeaux and was served more plain beef and potatoes than your average Iowa trucker consumes in a month. As for wine, even the most sophisticated Frenchman doesnt drink Latour and Haut-Brion every night. Thats what vins de pays are for. Literally, country wines, vins de pays are everyday wines, though the designation VDP is one step from ordinary table wines. There are a half-dozen Vin de Pays regions, by far the largest being Languedoc-Roussillon in southern France. So thats where Vino concentrated its attention, coming up with three whites and four reds to showcase the regions attributes. The big takeaway? Stick with the reds. All three whites were nothing Id want to see in a glass again. The 2011 Viognier des Acanthes and 2011 Marchal Sauvignon Blanc were both brownish, stinky, oxidized, and undrinkable. If you have a radiarecommended. Sadly, the non-vintage Jean-Claude Debeaune Cuve des Connoisseurs was only marginally better, with a faintly citrusy-soapy nose bucks less than this wines $10 price tag, you can do a lot better. On the other hand, our VDP reds were quite delightful, delivering a soupon of French savoir-faire at reasonable cost. If youre going to buy a cheap Merlot, look for a Fat Bastard. That would be Guy Anderson and Thierry Boudinauds Fat Bastard label, which graces bottles of simple but well-made and eminently drinkable wines, like the duos 2011 Merlot. Its rich, straightforward cherry-berry fruit is typical of inexpensive bottlings of this varietal, but its underlying currents of toasty oak, spice, and black olives add nuance to the mix, and its full body and big-mouth feel make it capable of standing up to everything from barbecue to hearty red-sauce pastas. Vino can never uncover enough affordable Pinot Noirs, and this tasting yielded a pair of good ones. Theres no vintage listed on the Lulu B but dont let that stop you. This product of Corsican vineyards (Vin de Pays de lle de Beaut) serves up lots of satisfaction and a surprising amount of varietal character for its $9 price tag. Theres a spicyearthy edge to its bright-red, cherry-raspberry fruit that distinguishes it from many bargain California Pinots, and its lighter-bodied too, so you can serve it with seafood, as well as chicken, pork, and veal. In much the same style is the 2012 Ropiteau Pinot Noir It is fruit-forward, a little grapey, a little earthy, with hints of olives and anise, and enough soft tannins and acidity to keep the ripe fruit under control. Like the Lulu B, its a But the real standout of the tasting was a blend of three classic grapes of southern France. The 2009 Domaine Magellan combines Grenache, Syrah, and Carignan for a big, robust wine (14.5 percent alcohol) whose tight structure supports layers of potent aromas of black n blue fruit, cloves and anise, oak and olives, all of which carry over to the palate. It really is pretty, you knowFrench. Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com Cheap but Rich French RedsRed, white, and you: Agreeable wine for $12 or less

PAGE 75

Columnists: DISHVegan Pizza, Batch Cocktails, and Stufng Your Face for Chinese New YearFood news we know you can use By Pamela Robin Brandt BT ContributorHappy Chinese New Year 2014! On January 31, the Year of the Horse began with a traditional animal name that is particularly appro priate since February is a month when Miamians traditionally eat like a horse. Thats particularly true this year. Our capitalF food event, the internationally renowned South Beach Wine & Food Fes tival, is being supplemented with an excit ing new community-oriented food fair, Palette Miami that showcases Biscayne Corridor restaurants as well celebrates local music, art, businesses, and more. in this issue (see Community News, page 40) because there have been too many recent restaurant openings in BT territory to take room here for cultural stuff. Dish after OPENINGS R House (2727 NW 2nd Ave., 305-5760201) In rapidly gentrifying Wynwood, something described as part restolounge/ part art gallery can make one suspect whizzing past appropriately arts-oriented realness to SoBe snooty pretension. But beautys not just skin-deep here; the art component is a genuine working gallery, with paintings for sale, etc. As for the res taurant part, the ultra-hands-on involvement of chef/owner Rocco Carulli is obvious. He seems to be everywhere at once, with an almost working-class/superhero ethic. Prices arent working-class, but theyre affordable. And most entres can be ordered in half portions. The fare itself is an eclectic New American mix, largely familiar (tuna tartare), sometimes unusual (sweet pea falafel), and all-around crowd-pleasing. Batch Gastropub (30 SW 12th St., 305-808-5555): Probably the most antici pated recent restaurant opening (owners Kevin Danilo and Jerry Flynn have been planning it for years, literally), Batch offers both draft beers and draft cocktails (pre pub grub. This means familiar, trendy, bar comfort foods dramatically upscaled by so phisticated chef-driven twists, and locally sourced, eco-conscious ingredients. Pittzza at Iron Side (7580 NE 4th Ct., 305-531-5055) Hidden within the green campus of Iron Side where industrial buildings have been transformed into a mixed-arts complex this striking space was formerly occupied by the Iron Side Caf. The cafs ambitious health/fresh ness-minded menu (from Metro Organic Bistros original chef, Nino Grullon) has been replaced by wood-oven pizzas and a pizza maestro from Naples (Italy, not Florida). But the fare, though simpler, is still scrumptious and health/freshnessminded; excepting tuna, all the toppings are either vegetarian or vegan (with dairyfree Daiya cheese substituted for mozz). House of V (7600 NE 4th Ct., 305323-1514) If Pittzzas cannoli dont do ya as dessert, the adjacent House of V, which began as a home-based bakery business that became a pop-up for Art Basel and then stayed on, offers Valentina Corderos vegan, gluten-free, organic sweets: cup cakes, cookies, brownies, and much more. BarMeli Miami (725 NE 79th St., 305754-5558) From Liza Meli, former owner of defunct Ouzos Greek Taverna, this new wine/Mediterranean tapas bar, just one block north and a couple of blocks east, doubles as a boutique wine store. The small plates selection, impressive in both size and quality, includes many of Ouzos Great est Hits: light and lemony taramosalata (carp roe dip); BBQ-grilled whole sardines, head-on prawns, or octopus. There are also by other Mediterranean countries; cheese entres; and desserts, including two lemon items, Mama Lucys cake and semolina/ lemon custard, bound to become legend. LOL RestoBar (801 Brickell Bay Dr., 786-615-8255) Tucked inside the Four Ambassadors Suites Hotel, this place is a stylish hidden hangout. Fare is mostly Argentinean (parrillada plates and other grilled meat-based items, empanadas) and Italian, as interpreted in Argentina (pasta with rose sauce, beef Milanese). A few American or Americanized items plonked here and there on the menu (a burger, a Hawaiian pineapple pizza) shake things up. CLOSING Sure seemed like it was Time for Wine (2200 NE 2nd Ave.), not of the half-pintin-a-brown-bag sort, when this this artfully rustic, remarkably wallet-friendly boutique wine shop/tapas bar brought tion of Wynwood less than a year ago. Alas. It was evidently ahead of its time. Hungry for more food news? See BizBuzz, page 16. Send me your tips and alerts: restaurants@biscaynetimes.com. Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com

PAGE 76

76 Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT S MIAMIBrickell / DowntownAijo1331 Brickell Bay Dr.,786-452-1637Hidden within Jade condo, this sleek Japanese fusion restolounge (whose name means love) is also a jewel. Food-loving Venezuelan owner Rene Buroz encourages innovation, and his chefs (including four from Zuma) respond with beautifully plated items as fun as they are flavorful. Dont miss the layered cro quante (a sort of Asian croqueta: mouthwatering crispy rice, subtly smoked salmon, and creamy crab), Aijo kani (king crab legs with citrus foam clouds and rich emulsified butter dip), or creative cocktails from a mixologist who also juggles and plays with fire. Area 31270 Biscayne Boulevard Way, 305-424-5234Not that the sleek interior of this seafood restaurant (named for fishing area 31, stretching from the Carolinas to South America) isnt a glamorous dining setting. But wed eat outside. From the expansive terrace of the Epic condo and hotel on the Miami River, the views of Brickells high-rises actually make Miami look like a real city. Its hard to decide whether the eats or drinks are the most impressive. The food is impeccably fresh regional fish, prepared in a clean Mediterranean-influenced style. The cocktails are genuinely creative. Luckily you dont have to choose one or the other. $$$-$$$$Atrio1395 Brickell Ave., 305-503-6529Admittedly, the Conrad Hotels top-end restaurant has had its ups and downs since its early days as one of the few exciting fine-dining restaurants in the Brickell/downtown area. But Atrio is ready for rediscovery. Despite Brickells recent restaurant explosion, few venues are as spectacularly suitable for a sophisticated breakfast, lunch, or dinner for grown-ups whod rather not shout over DJs. Panoramic views of Miami from the 25th floor are now matched by locally oriented dishes, including a mango/ lime mayo-dressed lobster sandwich, crisp-skinned snapper with grapefruit salsa and basil aioli, a bracing orange tart, even citrus butter in the bread basket. $$$-$$$$Balans901 S. Miami Ave., (Mary Brickell Village), 305-534-9191Open until 4:00 a.m. on weekends, this London import (Miamis second Balans) offers a sleeker setting than its perennially popular Lincoln Road progenitor, but the same simple yet sophisticated global menu. The indoor space can get mighty loud, but lounging on the dog-friendly outdoor terrace, over a rich croque monsieur (which comes with an alluringly sweet/sour citrusdressed side salad), a lobster club on onion toast, some surprisingly solid Asian fusion items, and a cocktail is one of Miamis more relaxing experiences. $$-$$$Bali Caf109 NE 2nd Ave., 305-358-5751While Indonesian food isnt easy to find in Miami, downtown has secret stashes small joints catering to cruise-ship and construction workers. This cute, exotically decorated caf has survived and thrived for good reason. The homey cooking is delicious, and the friendly family feel encourages even the timid of palate to try something new. Novices will want Indonesias signature rijsttafel, a mix-and-match collection of small dishes and condiments to be heaped on rice. Note: bring cash. No plastic accepted here. $-$$Banana & Leaf234 NE 3rd St., 786-431-5548Ever 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 youd rather, dishes on the larger custom menu arrive almost as fast. There is also limited, tasty Southeast Asian fare. Most unbelievable: Prices beat supermarket sushi by far. $Bar Urbano1001 S. Miami Ave., 305-381-5901Hot, hip, Hispanic is a huge understatement to describe the street-smart urban flair of this tropical restolounge. After about 9:00 p.m., droves of high-energy young partiers make the place seem more Latin singles bar than eatery. Nevertheless, the largely but not exclusively Colombian-inspired, Latin/Caribbean comfortfood cuisine can be inspiring. Were partial to snacks like the arepa Colombiana, heaped with fresh white cheese, and the sinful chivito sandwich (steak, ham, melted mozzarella, and a fried egg). But there are also full entres like a bandeja paisa (Colombias belly-busting mixed platter of proteins and carbs). $$-$$$Bento Sushi & Chinese801 Brickell Bay Dr., 305-603-8904Hidden 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 insiders 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-entres (the nigiri assortment sushi and lacy-battered tempura especially recommended). Bubble tea, too! $$-$$$ Biscayne Tavern146 Biscayne Blvd., 305-307-8300From restaurateur Jeffrey Chodorow, this contemporary tavern seems tailor-made for a newly urbanized neighborhood, inviting residents to hang from breakfast to late-night snack time, over updated comfort food thats globally inspired while adhering to the local/organic mantra. Among expected casual favorites (solid American burgers; Asianesque pork-belly sliders) highlights are items that chef Will Biscoe stamps with his own unique, unpre tentiously inventive touches, from small plates (housemade potato chips with blue cheese fondue) to large (a long-bone short rib chop with truffle popover; South Florida bouillabaisse). More than 30 craft beers accompany. $$-$$$ Blue Martini900 S. Miami Ave. #250, 305-981-2583With a 41-martini menu (plus exotic lighting, late hours, dance floor, and live music most nights), this wildly popular place is more lounge than restaurant. Nonetheless food offerings are surprisingly ambitious, including substantial items like sliced steak with horseradish sauce, as well as shareable light bites -parmesan-topped spinach/artichoke dip, served hot with toasted pita; shrimp and blue crab dip (yes: crab, not faux krab); a seductive puff pastry-wrapped and honey-drizzled baked brie. Come at happy hour (4:00-8:00 p.m. daily) for bargain drink/ snack specials, and lots of locals. $$ Bonding638 S. Miami Ave., 786-409-4794From trend-spotting restaurateur Bond Trisansi (originator of Mr. Yum and 2B Asian Bistro), this small spot draws a hip crowd with its affordable menu of redesigned traditional Thai dishes, wildly imaginative sushi makis, and unique signature Asian fusion small plates. Highlights include tastebud-tickling snapper carpaccio; an elegant nest of mee krob (sweet, crisp rice noodles); blessedly non-citrus-drenched tuna tataki, drizzled with spicysweet mayo and wasabi cream sauce; greed-inducing bags of gold, deep-fried wonton beggars purses with a shrimp/pork/ mushroom/waterchestnut filling and tamarind sauce. $$ Bon Fromage500 Brickell Ave. #106, 786-329-5632Though independently owned instead of a chain cog, this cheese and wine caf/shop is like a pint-size version of Midtown Miamis 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 dont miss more unusual domestic treasures like Wisconsin bread, a cooked cheese that, like halloumi, doesnt melt but tantalizingly softens when heated. $$ Brasileiro801 Brickell Bay Dr., 786-502-3829Fittingly, the indoor/outdoor bay-view space in the Four Ambassadors, occupied by Miamis first Brazilian rodizio restaurant back in the early 1980s, is now home to a 21st-century upgrade. For insatiable carnivores and fans of Latin Americas best dinner show, theres the traditional parade of tableside, sword-wielding gauchos carving all-you-can-eat meats, including must-not-miss medium-rare picanhas, delectably fat-capped sirloin. For more modern and/or light eaters, prepared dishes by Gully Booth, one of Miamis best-kept-secret chefs, include goat cheese croquettes, stuffed dates, and crab cakes Martha Stewart once proclaimed the best shed eaten. $$$$Brother Jimmys BBQ900 S. Miami Ave. #135, 786-360-3650The South is supposed to be the source of barbecue. But Bro J evidently didnt hear about that. His signature North Carolina pork cue comes from NYC, where the first Brother Jimmys opened more than 20 years ago. Miamis location is actually the first south of the Mason-Dixon line. But the slow-smoked pulled pork butt tastes righteous -no interfering glop, just hot sauce-spiked vinegar to balance the fab fattiness. Theres other cue, too, including big (not baby back) ribs, and respectable brisket. $$-$$$Bryan in the Kitchen104 NE 2nd Ave., 305-371-7777This quirky caf-markets chef/owner is a former smoothie-swilling model who is now into fresh whole foods, and though his eclectic green gourmet menu does uniformly reflect his dedication to ecological consciousness, it otherwise could only be described as intensely personal. Offerings are an odd but appealing saint/sinner mix, ranging from healthy pasta/grain salads and homemade-from-scratch snacks (beef jerky, granola) to unique cupcakes featuring not-too-sweet adult flavors and irresistible sticky buns. If we had to choose just one category, wed sin. But luckily, you can have it all. $-$$ Caf Bastille248 SE 1st St., 786-425-3575Breakfasting on a ham-egg-cheese crepe at this very Frenchfeeling -and tasting -caf is a most civilized way to start the day. Formerly breakfast and lunch only, the caf is now open for dinner, too. And while the 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 poivre make it possible to resist. $-$$$Ceviche Piano140 SE 1st Ave., 305-577-4414Owners Martin and Charo Villacorta, a married chef/pastry chef team, think of this eatery as a relocation (in the same downtown plaza) and reinvention of their former best kept secret spot Martini 28. Most dramatic changes: upscaled size, and with its glamorous white piano, upgraded elegance. The menu has also been altered to be less of a global wildcard. Focus is now strongly on Peruvian cuisine, including a shrimp/calamari-smothered fish fillet with aji amarillo cream sauce. But no worries, old fans. Some of the old favorite dishes remain. $$ Chophouse Miami300 S. Biscayne Blvd., 305-938-9000Formerly Mannys Steakhouse, Miamis Chophouse retains basically everything but the famed name (from the original Mannys in Minneapolis), and remains Miamis 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 cocktails that would fell a T-Rex. Not for the frail. $$$$$ Cipriani465 Brickell Ave., 786-329-4090Derived, like all Cipriani family restaurants worldwide, from legendary Harrys Bar in Venice (a favorite of Truman Capote, Hemingway, and other famous folks since 1931), this glamorous indoor/outdoor riverfront location in Icon has two absolutely must-not-miss menu items, both invented at Harrys and reproduced here to per fection: beef carpaccio (drizzled artfully with streaks of creamy-rich mustard vinaigrette, not mere olive oil) and the Bellini (a cocktail of prosecco, not champagne, and fresh white peach juice). Venetianstyle liver and onions could convert even liver-loathers. Finish with elegant vanilla meringue cake. $$$$$ Restaurant ListingsThe Biscayne Corridors most comprehensive restaurant guide. Total this month: 292.rf ntbnf nttnf tnt f f t tff nff ff NEW THIS MONTH MIAMIBRICKELL / DOWNTOWNBatch Gastropub30 SW 12th St., 305-808-5555The name refers to Batchs signature novelty items, which we think of as gourmet fast-food cocktails: high-quality fresh ingre dients (some barrel-aged), pre-mixed in batches and served on tap for instant gratification. But a menu designed by E. Michael Reidt (ex-Area 31), means solid foods are serious chef-driven pub grub: the Mac Attack, sophisticated mac n cheese featuring gnocchi and aged Gruyere; sinfully succulent burgers, substituting brisket for leaner beef; nachos upgraded with duck confit; wood-oven pizzas topped with unusual combinations like pumpkin plus shortrib; duck fat popcorn; housemade sodas. $$15th & Vine Kitchen485 Brickell Ave., 305-503-0373In the 15th floor space originally occupied by Eos, the Viceroys top-end restaurant now focuses its dcor on spectacular bay views (particularly from an outdoor garden/pool terrace). And the mostly small-plates menu of accessible internationally influenced New American fare is more Miami-appropriate, too. Especially recommended: Asian-inspired items like spicy ginger meatballs with sweet sambal chili sauce, or lump crab croquettes with sriracha, remoulade, and a frise/fennel salad. Favorites like flatbreads and sliders plus a classy setting make this a striking business-lunch option. $$$-$$$$ Havana 19571451 S. Miami Ave., 305-381-6651If you never had the chance to enjoy classic Cuban dishes in glam 1950s Havana (pre-He Who Must Not Be Named), you can now at this nostalgic restolounge. Eat your way through the day, from hefty four-egg/croqueta breakfasts to late-night mini pan con bistec bar bites, surrounded by old-school memorabilia, music, and mojitos. Admittedly, prices are higher than those at average Miami Cuban eateries. But daily spe cials, including Wednesdays especially tasty mojo-marinated chicken fricassee in sweet-savory criollo sauce, are a great value. And the time trip is priceless. $$-$$$MIDTOWN / WYNWOOD / DESIGN DISTRICTiSushi Caf3301 NE 1st Ave. #107, 305-548-8751Ever get tempted by supermarket sushi rolls, just because theyre there? Dont be. This quick-casual caf has a menu similar to that at sushi/Japanese small-plates, fast-food take-out joints (individual nigiri, makis, and party platters, plus small plates like edamame, seaweed, etc.) and comparable preparation speed, too, but with ingredient quality and freshness thats more upscale. Prices are actually considerably cheaper than those of market makis that might have been sitting around for days. Additionally, ambiance, though casual, is stylish enough for a date or dinner with friends. $$ UPPER EASTSIDEBig Fish620 NE 78th St., 305-373-1770Longtime locals who remember the uniquely Miamian ambiance of the first Big Fish, a beloved Miami River hole-in-the-wall restolounge, will want to visit this rebirth featuring an equally cool waterside setting on the Little River, plus an original owner and similar traditional Italian dishes. Our personal fave is spaghetti alla vongole veraci (with tiny true Venetian clams, hard to find today even in Venice), but youll know what you like on the familiar menu. Best seating: the expansive extensively (and expensively) rebuilt riverfront deck. $$$-$$$$ Via Verdi Cucina Rustica6900 Biscayne Blvd., 786-615-2870After years of critical acclaim cooking the cuisine of their native Piedmont at ultra-upscale Quattro, on Lincoln Road, twin brother chefs Nicola and Fabrizio Carro decided to work for themselves, hands-on renovating the former space of MiMo District pioneer Uva 69. Cuisine here is similarly authentic, with creative twists. But there are important differences: emphasis on local, rather than mostly imported, ingredients; inspiration from all Italian regions; and best, astonishing affordability. Housemade spinach/ricotta gnudi baked in an ocean of burrata is a delight, but its hard to go wrong here. $$-$$$

PAGE 77

Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT S

PAGE 78

78 Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT SThe Corner1035 N. Miami Ave., 305-961-7887With a Zuma alum in the kitchen, a Gigi alum crafting classic or creative cocktails, a warm pub feel, and hours extending from lunch to nearly breakfast the next morning, The Corner is transforming a desolate downtown corner into a neighborhood hangout. The nicely priced menu of sandwiches, salads, snacks, and sweets (the latter from Om Nom Noms cookie queen Anthea Ponsetti) ranges from 100-percent homemade ice cream sandwiches to the Crazy Madame, Frances elaborate Croque Madame (a bchamel sauce-topped grilled cheese/ham/fried egg sandwich) plus bacon and caramelized onion. $-$$ Crazy About You1155 Brickell Bay Dr. #101, 305-377-4442The owners, and budget-friendly formula, are the same here as at older Dolores, But You Can Call Me Lolita: Buy an entre (all under $20) from a sizable list of Mediterranean, Latin, American, or Asian-influenced choices (like Thai-marinated churrasco with crispy shoestring fries) and get an appetizer for free, including substantial stuff like a Chihuahua cheese casserole with chorizo and pesto. The difference: This place, housed in the former location of short-lived La Broche, has an even more upscale ambiance than Dolores -including a million-dollar water view. $$$ Cvi.che 105105 NE 3rd Ave., 305-577-3454Fusion 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 creations, such as tiradito a la crema de rocoto (sliced fish in citrus-spiked chili/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. $$ db Bistro Moderne255 Biscayne Blvd. Way, 305-421-8800Just two words, Daniel Boulud, should be enough for foodies craving creative French/American comfort food to run, not walk, to this restaurant. Downtowns db is indeed an absentee celeb chef outpost, but on-site kitchen wizard Matthieu Godard flawlessly executes dishes ranging from the original db Bistros signature foie gras/ short rib/black truffle-stuffed burger to local market-driven dishes. Especially strong are seafood preparations, whether sauced with a refined choron or lustily garnished with Provencal accompaniments like tender sea scallops with chickpea panisse. $$$-$$$$ D-Dog House50 SW 10th St., 305-381-7770While it has become increasingly common to find servers at upscale restaurants utilizing computerized POS (point of service) systems to take orders, this high-tech hole-in-the-wall trumps them by replacing servers -and in-house entertainment, too -with iPads that accept not just food orders and credit cards but music requests. You can web surf or game, too, while waiting for your choice of the house specialty: supersized hot dogs, most overloaded with internationally inspired toppings. To accompany, hand-cut fries are a must. And have a cocktail. Theres a full liquor bar. $-$$ Dolores, But You Can Call Me Lolita1000 S. Miami Ave., 305-403-3103From the stylish setting in Miamis historic Firehouse No. 4, one would expect a mighty pricy meal. But entres, 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. $$$Doraku900 S. Miami Ave., 305-373-4633Happy hour comes twice daily (after work and lunch) at this second location of a popular South Beach sushi, pan-Asian, small-plates restolounge, bringing discounted prices on treats like rock shrimp tempura with spicy aioli. Regular prices are reasonable, too, for seafood flown in daily, and makis displaying solid creativity rather than gimmickry. Especially enjoyable are items accented by Japanese ingredients rarely found in Americanized sushi bars, like the Geisha Rolls astringent shiso leaf, beautifully balancing spicy tuna, pickled radish, and rich eel sauce. A huge sake menu, too. $$-$$$Edge, Steak & Bar1435 Brickell Ave., 305-358-3535Replacing the Four Seasons formal fine dining spot Acqua, Edge offers a more kick-back casual welcoming vibe. And in its fare theres a particularly warm welcome for non-carnivores. Chef-driven seafood items (several inventive and unusually subtle ceviches and tartares; a layered construction of corvina encrusted in a jewel-bright green pesto crust, atop red piquillo sauce stripes and salad; lobster corn soup packed with sweet lobster meat; more) and a farm-to-table produce emphasis make this one steakhouse where those who dont eat beef have no beef. $$$$-$$$$$ Elwoods Gastro Pub188 NE 3rd Ave., 305-358-5222Cordial English owners, classic rock music (sometimes live), and updated classic pub fare make this hangout a home. Made from scratch with artisan ingredients, traditional Brit bites like fish and chips cant be beat -thick pieces of crisply beer-battered moist cod, served with hand-cut fries and mushy [mashed] peas, plus housemade tar tar sauce and ketchup. All desserts are also made in-house, including a deliriously rich (but worth it) sticky date pudding with toffee sauce. Tie down your dental implants. Theyre in for a wild ride. $$Fado Irish Pub900 S. Miami Ave. #200, 786-924-0972Unlike most Miami Irish pubs, which serve mostly American bar food, rarely foraying past fish and chips or shepherds 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. Theres a seasonal menu, too. $$The Filling Station & Garage Bar95 SE 2nd St., 786-425-1990This fun, locally oriented dive, opened in 1994, was hip more than a decade before downtown was. And its 2008 relocation to larger quarters, plus two subsequent expansions, signal that it has more than kept up with the explosion of newer neighborhood hotspots, without pretensions or yuppified prices. On the fresh, hefty hamburgers, true Miami weirdness is displayed in toppings like peanut butter or Nutella. Other standouts: tangyspicy Buffalo wings; homemade tater tots; the oil pan (fried pickles and onion rings with two sauces); and an ever-changing list of craft beers. $-$$ Fratelli Milano213 SE 1st St., 305-373-2300Downtown isnt yet a 24/7 urban center, but its experiencing a mini explosion of eateries open at night. That includes this family-owned ristorante, where even newcomers feel at home. At lunch its almost impossible to resist panini, served on foccacia or crunchy ciabatta; even the vegetarian version bursts with complex and complementary flavors. During weekday dinners, try generous plates of risotto with shrimp and grilled asparagus; homemade pastas like seafood-packed fettuccine al scoglio; or delicate Vitello alla Milanese on arugula. $$-$$$Garcias Seafood Grille and Fish Market398 NW N. River Dr., 305-375-0765Run by a fishing family for a couple of generations, this venerable Florida fish shack is the real thing. No worries about the seafoods freshness; on their way to the dining deck overlooking the Miami River, diners can view the retail fish market. Best preparations are the simplest. When stone crabs are in season, Garcias claws are as good as Joes but considerably cheaper. The local fish sandwich is most popular grouper, yellowtail snapper, or mahi mahi. $-$$Hibachi Grill45 NE 3rd Ave., 305-374-2223Imagine a mini-express Benihana. This place specializes in teppanyaki cuisine -minus the thrilling (or terrifying) tableside knife theatrics, true, but the one-plate meals of seasoned steak slices, chicken, shrimp, or salmon plus dipping sauces, fried rice, and an onion/zucchini mix come at bargain prices. There are also hefty soups or Japanese, Thai, and Singapore-style noodle and rice bowls loaded with veggies and choice of protein (including tofu). The limited sides are Japanese (shumai, plump chicken gyoza) and Chinese (various egg rolls). Fancy? No, but satisfying. $-$$ The Island Bistro605 Brickell Key Dr., 305-364-5512In the space that was formerly Fabiens, this bistro has nearidentical lunch and dinner menus of French-inspired food: Basquestyle shrimp pil pil, salmon with beurre blanc, steak au poivre. But theres now an espresso-rubbed steak, too, tie-in to an added Panther Coffee Bar serving pastries and other light bites from early morning. That, plus a new lounge with daily happy hours, makes the place feel less formal and more like a casual contemporary hangout. So do daily specials, including Thursdays Shells & Bubbles, a bargain seafood/champagne feast. $$-$$$Il Gabbiano335 S. Biscayne Blvd., 305-373-0063Its location at the mouth of the Miami River makes this ultraupscale 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 thats a trademark of Manhattans Il Mulino, originally run by Il Gabbianos owners. The rest of the food? Pricy, but portions are mammoth. And the champagne-cream-sauced housemade ravioli with black truffles? Worth every penny. $$$$$Jamon Iberico Pata Negra Restaurant 10 SW South River Dr., 305-324-1111From the outside, you know youre walking into the ground floor of a new condo building. But once inside the charmingly rustic room, youd swear youre in Spain. Obviously Spains famous cured hams are a specialty, as are other pork products on the weekly changing menu, from a roast suckling pig entre to a fried chorizo and chickpea tapa. But seafood is also terrific. Dont miss bacalao-filled piquillo peppers, or two of Miamis best rice dishes: seafood paella and arroz negro (with squid and its ink). $$-$$$Largo Bar & Grill401 Biscayne Blvd., 305-374-9706Sure, Bayside Marketplace is touristy. But it can be fun to spend a day playing visitor in your own city. If you do, this waterfront place overlooking Miamarina is a superior food choice. Expect nothing cutting edge, just tasty, familiar favorites solidly prepared. You wont go wrong with stone crab claws and Cajun mustard dip; inauthentic but delicious fish tacos in hard blue corn tortillas with two sauces (cilantro and chipotle), generously portioned fish sandwiches (grouper, mahi, snapper, or daily catch), and festive cocktails. $$-$$$ La Loggia Ristorante and Lounge68 W. Flagler St., 305-373-4800This luxuriantly neo-classical yet warm Italian restaurant was unquestionably a pioneer in revitalizing downtown. With alternatives like amaretto-tinged pumpkin agnolloti in sage butter sauce and cilantro-spiced white bean/vegetable salad dressed with truffle oil, proprietors Jennifer Porciello and Horatio Oliveira continue to draw a lunch crowd that returns for dinner, or perhaps just stays on through the afternoon, fueled by the Lawyers Liquid Lunch, a vodka martini spiked with sweetened espresso. $$$La Moon 144 SW 8th St., 305-860-6209At 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 places late hours (till 6:00 a.m. Friday and Saturday) are surprising, the daytime menu is more so. In addition to Colombian classics, theres a salad Nicoise with grilled fresh tuna, seared salmon with mango salsa, and other yuppie favorites. $-$$ La Provence1064 Brickell Ave. 786-425-9003Great baguettes in the bread basket, many believe, indicate a great meal to come. But when Miamians encounter such bread -crackling crust outside; moist, aromatic, aerated interior -its likely not from a restaurants own kitchen, but from La Provence. Buttery croissants and party-perfect pastries are legend too. Not so familiar is the bakerys caf component, whose sandwich/salad menu reflects local eclectic tastes. But French items like pan bagnats (essentially salade Nioise on artisan bread) will truly transport diners to co-owner David Thaus Provenal homeland. $$La Sandwicherie34 SW 8th St., 305-374-9852This second location of the open-air diner that is South Beachs favorite aprs-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 charcute rie and cheeses (saucisson sec, country pt, camembert, etc.) and choice of salad veggies plus salty/tart cornichons and Sandwicheries incomparable Dijon mustard vinaigrette. Additionally the larger branch has an interior, with a kitchen enabling hot foods (quiches and croques), plus A/C. $-$$LEntrecote de Paris1053 SE 1st Ave., 305-755-9995If menu choices makes you nuts, this place, originally a Parisian eatery with locations in Brazil, is the restaurant for you. Theres only one prix fixe meal offered: an entrecote steak with a famed creamy sauce of 21 ingredients (here, predominantly curry), accompanied by a walnut-garnished mixed greens/tomato salad and shoestring frites, plus a crunchy-crusted baguette. Your only choice is how you like your steak precision-cooked. la carte desserts are indeed extensive; avoid stress by choosing a macaron flight of mixed flavors. $$$Lime Fresh Mexican Grill1 W. Flagler St., 305-789-9929Like its Midtown and North Miami Beach siblings, this Lime Fresh serves up carefully crafted Tex-Mex food. The concept is fast casual rather than fast food meaning nice enough for a night out. It also means ingredients are always fresh. Seafood tacos are about as exotic as the menu gets, but the mahi mahi for fish tacos comes from a local supplier, and salsas are housemade daily. Niceties include low-carb tortillas and many Mexican beers. $Lippi600 Brickell Ave., 305-579-1888Named after a 15th-century Italian painter, Lippi does have artful dcor and plating, but otherwise the moniker is mislead ing. The food is neither Italian nor, as some descriptions claim, Mediterranean-inspired. Its Philippe food -an extensive menu of mostly shareable small plates (a concept Philippe Ruiz pioneered at Palme dOr in the 1990s), inspired mainly by the chefs classic French technique and geographically limitless imagination. Standouts: weakfish ceviche with corn panna cotta and purple potato foam; lobster ravioli in aerated coriander-scented bisque. Everything is beautifully balanced and refined. $$$$-$$$$$Lunch American Style221 NW 1st Ave., 305-379-1991 Tasting the country, one place at a time is this lunchrooms motto. Wed recommend bringing friends for a tour of many regions favorite foods, most creatively interpreted. Theyre also crafted with homemade ingredients ranging from fresh-baked breads to the house-smoked pastrami on a Big Apple sandwich. The Nawlins poboy (featuring crispy-fried shrimp and horseradish remoulade) is also highly recommended. Try to make room for Iowa fritters (mouthwatering fried corn puffs with remoulade dip), too. To accompany: changing craft beers. $-$$ Machiya3252 NE 1st Ave. #116, 786-507-5025Originally called Machiya Ramen Noodle House, this eaterychanged its name -and really, the place is not so much a ramen joint as a contemporary izakaya (lounge featuring Japanese hot and cold small plates plus sushi), with a few added ramen bowls. Most of the menu is a mix of todays popular favorites, like Kobe sliders, and unique inventions. Wildest: wasabi-spiced tuna pizza. Our faves: fatty salmon makis (lightly seared salmon belly with shrimp tempura, asparagus, and yuzu sauce); rich miso-braised short ribs; steam buns with rock shrimp and spicy aioli.Medialunas Calentitas919 Brickell Ave., 305-517-3303At this first U.S. location of a Uruguayan chain, the signature specialtys crescent-like shape says croissant. But medialunas dont have croissants puff-pastry flakiness; theyre more substantial buttery breakfast rolls. And either simply syrup-glazed or stuffed (with ham and cheese, dulce de leche, more), they make a terrific Latin comfort-food breakfast or snack on the run. The same is true for equally bargain-priced empanadas (three varieties with distinctive fillings from Uruguay, Argentina, or Mexico) and tiny but tasty migas sandwiches like the elaborate Olympic: ham, cheese, lettuce, tomato, peppers, eggs, olives. $Miami Art Caf364 SE 1st St., 305-374-5117For businessfolk on the go, this breakfast/lunch-only French caf serves up evocative baguette sandwiches (like camembert) loaded, if you like, with greens, olives, and more. For those with time to sit, wed recommend the savory crpes, garnished with perfectly dressed salad, or sweet crpe like the Bonne Maman (whose sugar/salted butter stuffing brings Brittany to downtown). And quiches are nicely custardy. But there are surprises here, too, including just a few full entres, with correctly made traditional sauces one wouldnt expect at a luncheonette -except, perhaps, in Paris. $-$$Miamis Finest Caribbean Restaurant236 NE 1st Ave., 305-381-9254Originally from Jamaica, proprietor Miss Pat has been serving her traditional homemade island specialties to downtown office workers and college students since the early 1990s. Most popu lar item here might be the weekday lunch special of jerk chicken with festival (sweet-fried cornmeal bread patties), but even vege tarians are well served with dishes like a tofu, carrot, and chayote curry. All entres come with rice and peas, fried plantains, and salad, so no one leaves hungry. $Mint Leaf1063 SE 1st Ave., 305-358-5050Part of Londons famous Woodlands Group, this stylish spot, like its Coral Gables parent, serves the sort of upscale Indian food rarely found outside Great Britain or India. More interestingly, the menu includes not just the familiar northern Indian Mughlai fare served in most of Americas Indian restaurants, but refined versions of south Indias scrum ptious street food. Weve happily assembled whole meals of the vegetarian chaat (snacks) alone. And dosai (lacy rice/lentil crepes rolled around fillings ranging from traditional onion/potato to lamb masala or spicy chicken) are so addictive they oughta be illegal. $$$-$$$$Miss Yip Chinese Caf900 Biscayne Blvd., 305-358-0088Fans of the South Beach original will find the dcor different. Most notably, theres an outdoor lounge, and more generally a nightclub atmosphere. But the menu of Hong Kong-style Chinese food, prepared by imported Chinese cooks, is familiar. Simple yet sophisticated Cantonese seafood dishes rock (try the lightly battered salt-and-pepper shrimp), as does orange peel chicken, spicy/ tangy rather than overly sweet. And a single two-course Peking duck (skin in crepes, stir-fried meat and veggies with lettuce cups) makes mouthwatering finger food, shared among friends. $-$$$ Momi Ramen5 SW 11th St., 786-391-2392Banish all thoughts of packaged instant ramen. Perfectionist chef/owner Jeffrey Chen (who cooked for more than a decade in Japan), changes his mostly ramen-only menu often, but constants are irresistibly chewy handmade noodles; soups based on creamy, intensely porky tonkotsu broth (made from marrow bones simmered all day); meats like pork belly and oxtail; and authentic toppings including marinated soft-cooked eggs, pickled greens, more. Other pluses: Its open 24/7, and the ramen ranks with the USAs best. Minuses: Its cash only, and the ramen might be the USAs most expensive. $$$MPP Brickell141 SW 7th St., 305-400-4610Tasty Peruvian eateries arent rare in Miami. Peruvian fine-dining restaurants are. In the tastefully toned-down but still glam space forme rly housing And, this second location of Limas popular Mi Propriedad Privada specializes in familiar flavors presented with seriously upscaled preparations, plating, and prices. But many ceviches, tiraditos, and starters (like especially artful layered/ molded mashed potato/seafood causas, or clever panko-breade d fusion causa makis) come in trios for taste-testing. And ceviche lovers score on Tuesdays, when all-you-can-eat costs the same as a trio. $$$-$$$$$ My Ceviche1250 S. Miami Ave., 305-960-7825When three-time James Beard Rising Star Chef nominee Sam Gorenstein opened the original My Ceviche in SoBe, in 2012, it garnered national media attention despite being a tiny take-away joint. Arguably, our newer indoor/outdoor Brickell location is better. Same menu, featuring local fish prepared onsite, and superb sauces including a kicky roasted jalapeo/lime mayo), but this time with seats! What to eat? Ceviches, natch. But grilled or raw fish/seafood tacos and burritos, in fresh tortillas, might be even more tempting. Pristine stone-crab claws from co-owner Roger Duartes George Stone Crab add to the choices. $$Naoe661 Brickell Key Dr., 305-947-6263Chances are youve never had anything like the $85 prix-fixe Japanese dinners at chef Kevin Corys tiny but nationally acclaimed oasis, transplanted from its original Sunny Isles space with its supreme serenity intact. By reservation only, in two dinner seatings of just eight people each, and omakase (chefs choice) only, meals include a seasonal soup, a four-course bento box, eight pieces of sushi, and three desserts. Cory personally does everything for you, even applying the perfect amount of housemade artisan soy sauce mix and fresh-grated wasabi to each mind-reelingly fresh nigiri. Few eating experiences on earth are more luxuriant. $$$$$ neMesis Urban Bistro1035 N. Miami Ave., 305-415-9911Truly original restaurants are hard to find here, and harder to describe in standard sound bites. But they often are the attention-grabbing peo ple-magnets that spark revivals of iffy neighborhoods. Thats our prediction for this quirkily decorated bistro, where the kitchen is helmed by Top Chef contestant Micah Edelstein. The intensely personal menu of creative dishes inspired by her global travels (plus her fascination with unfamiliar ingredients) changes constantly, but scrumptious signatures include South African smoked veal bobotie, and Peruvian pinoli pancakes with housemade chicken/apple sausage, hibiscus syrup, and maple granules. $$$-$$$$Novecento1414 Brickell Ave., 305-403-0900For those who think Argentine cuisine is a synonym for beef and more beef, this popular eaterys wide range of more cosmo politan contemporary Argentine fare will be a revelation. Classic parrilla-grilled steaks are here for traditionalists, but the menu is dominated by creative Nuevo Latino items like a new-style ceviche de chernia (lightly lime-marinated grouper with jalapeos, basil, and the refreshing sweet counterpoint of watermelon), or crab ravioli with creamy saffron sauce. Especially notable are the entre salads. $$-$$$

PAGE 79

Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT S rfn 305-947-0064ttbr b www.yakko-san.comb bAuthentic Japanese Cuisine Full Bar Sushi Express bnf rrrrbbrnn tftnbrbr nrrrb

PAGE 80

Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT SOceanaire Seafood Room900 S. Miami Ave., 305-372-8862With 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 bars cold-water oysters) are ultra-fresh. $$$$OTC1250 S. Miami Ave. 305-374-4612Over-the-counter service usually connotes the classic fast food slider experience: both greaseburgers and patrons are in and out quickly. At this casually cool gastropub, the counter ordering system encourages the opposite feel, of comfie congeniality; it invites hanging out, just without the fuss of formal dining out -or the expense. Most plates are $10 or under. Ingredient-driven dishes cover todays favorite food groups (various mac-and-cheeses, variously topped/seasoned fries, and more) with some unusual twists, like a scrumptiously lardon-laden frise/goat cheese salad brightened by fresh peaches. Even the condiments are housemade. $$Ozzi Sushi200 SE 1st St., 786-704-8003Since 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, nigiri, 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. $-$$Pashas1414 Brickell Ave., 305-416-5116The original branch on Lincoln Road was instantly popular, and the same healthy Middle Eastern fast food is served at several newer outlets. The prices are low enough that you might suspect Pashas was a tax write-off rather than a Harvard Business School project, which it was by founders Antonio Ellek and Nicolas Cortes. Dishes range from falafel and gyros to more unusual items like muhammara (tangy walnut spread) and silky labneh yogurt cheese. Everything from pitas to lemonade is made fresh, from scratch, daily. $-$$Pega Grill15 E. Flagler St., 305-808-6666From Thanasios Barlos, a Greek native who formerly owned North Beachs 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 pita 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. $$ Perfecto Gastro1450 Brickell Ave., 305-372-0620This transplant from Barcelona features dcor that mixes rustic and urban, plus modern music and traditional tapas (the Spanish, not global, kind). Must-have: imported 5J jamon Iberico de Bellota from acorn-fed pata negra pigs -lusciously marbled, tender yet toothsome, the ultimate in cured hams. But other tapas like the salmorejo en vaso (a creamy, pumped Andalusian variation on gazpacho), papatas bravas (crisp-fried potatoes with spicy aioli), fuet (Catalan salami, similar to French saucisson sec), and crispy prawns are pretty perfecto, too. $$-$$$$ Perricones15 SE 10th St., 305-374-9449Housed in a Revolutionary-era barn (moved from Vermont), this market/caf was one of the Brickell areas first gentrified amenities. At lunch chicken salad is a favorite; dinners strong suit is the pasta list, ranging from Grandma Jennies old-fashioned lasagna to chichi fiocchi purses filled with fresh pear and gorgonzola. And Sundays $15.95 brunch buffet ($9.95 for kids) featuring an omelet station, waffles, smoked salmon and bagels, salads, and more remains one of our towns most civilized all-you-can-eat deals. $$Pieducks1451 S. Miami Ave., 305-808-7888If you can overlook a name as unenlightening as most in-jokes (it evidently refers to a favorite character of owner Claudio Nuness kids -we assume the Pokemon Psyduck), youll experience pretty perfect pizza. Sadly, not all brick ovens turn out perfectly charblistered crusts, crisp outside and airy/chewy inside, but thats what youll consistently find here and a newer take-out/deliveryonly Midtown branch. And unlike many artisan pizzerias, Pieducks doesnt get cheesy with cheese quantity (though we like that extra cheese is an option). Elaborate salads complete the menu. $$Pizzarium69 E. Flagler St., 305-381-6025Roman-style rectangular pizzas, served in square slices, have been available in the Miami area since the mid-1990s. But the familiar squares and Pizzariums are similar only in shape. Main difference: dough, here allowed to rise for four days. The resulting crusts are astonishingly airy, as authentic Roman slices, intended as light street snacks, should be. Toppings, a rotating selection of nearly 30 combinations, are highlighted by quality imported ingredients -not to mention a healthy imagination, as the zucca gialla attests: pumpkin cream, pancetta, smoked scamorza cheese. $ Porketta43 NE 3rd Ave., 305-372-0034Warm, juicy, served with succulent pieces of crisp crackling, herbstuffed Italian porchetta (pronounced porketta) roast, at its best, is hard to find even in much of Italy except during festivals. But every day is a festival here, where the real thing (not the dry deli-style pork roll slices that often pass for porchetta) is featured on a plate with broccoli rabe and cannellinis; in the hefty Bombardino sandwich; or in three mini-sandwiches, convenient for sampling the places three sauces. Several salads and carpaccios placate porkophobes. $-$$PreludeAdrienne Arsht Center 1300 Biscayne Blvd., 305-949-6722Though the opening of Barton G.s elegant performing arts center eatery did feature a live giraffe, the foods actually more grown-up than at his original SoBe spot. The concept is prix fixe: Any three courses on the menu (meaning three entres 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 crme fraiche ice cream pop. $$$$Rajas Indian Cuisine33 NE 2nd Ave., 305-539-9551Despite its small size and dcor best described as none, this place is an institution thanks to south Indian specialties rarely found in Miamis basically north Indian restaurants. The steamtabled curries are fine (and nicely priced), but be sure to try the custom-made dosai (lacy rice crepes with a variety of savory fillings) and uttapam, thicker pancakes, layered with onions and chilis, both served with sambar and chutney. $$The River Oyster Bar650 S. Miami Ave., 305-530-1915This 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 remoulade. There are even a few dishes to please meat-and-potatoes diners, like short ribs with macaroni and cheese. But oyster fans will find it difficult to resist stuffing themselves silly on the unusually large selection, especially since oysters are served both raw and cooked fireroasted with sofrito butter, chorizo, and manchego. Theres also a thoughtful wine list and numerous artisan beers on tap. $$$Rosa Mexicano900 S. Miami Ave., 786-425-1001 www.rosamexicano.comThis expansive indoor/outdoor space offers a dining experience thats haute in everything but price. Few entres top $20. The dcor is both date-worthy and family-friendly -festive but not kitschy. And nonsophisticates neednt fear; there is nothing scary about zarape de pato (roast duck between freshly made, soft corn tortillas, topped with yellow-and-habanero-pepper cream sauce), or Rosas signature guacamole en molcajete, made table side. A few pomegranate margaritas ensure no worries. $$$Soya & Pomodoro120 NE 1st St., 305-381-9511Life is complicated. Food should be simple. Thats owner Armando Alfanos philosophy, which is stated above the entry to his atmospheric downtown eatery. And since its also the formula for the truest traditional Italian food (Alfano hails from Pompeii), its fitting that the menu is dominated by authentically straightforward yet sophisticated Italian entres. 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. $-$$Sparkys Roadside Restaurant & Bar204 NE 1st St., 305-377-2877This cowboy-cute eaterys chefs/owners (one CIA-trained, both BBQ fanatics nicknamed Sparky) eschew regional purism, instead utilizing a hickory/apple-wood-stoked rotisserie smoker to turn out their personalized style of slow-cooked, complexly dry-rub fusion: ribs, chopped pork, brisket, and chicken. Diners can customize their orders with mix-and-match housemade sauces: sweet/tangy tomato-based, Carolinas-inspired vinegar/mustard, pan-Asian hoisin with lemongrass and ginger, tropical guava/habanero. Authenticity aside, the quality of the food is as good as much higher-priced barbecue outfits. $-$$ Stanzione 8787 SW 8th St., 305-606-7370 Though Neopolitan-style pizza isnt the rarity it was here a decade ago, this is Miamis only pizzeria certified authentic by Italys Associazione Verace Pizza Napoletana. This means following stringent rules regarding oven (wood-fired), baking time (90 seconds maximum, here closer to 50), tomatoes (imported San Marzano), olive oil (extra-virgin), even flour (tipo 00, for bubblylight crusts). Toppings do exceed the three original choices served in 19th-century Naples, but pies like the Limone (fresh mozzarella, pecorino, lemons, arugula, EVOO) prove some rules should be broken. $$Sumi Yakitori21 SW 11th St., 786-360-5570If your definition of yakitori has been formed from typical Americanized sticky-sweet skewers, this late-night places grilled offerings, flavored with the subtly smoky savor of imported Japanese binchotan charcoal will be a revelation. Dcor is more stunningly stylish than at chef/owner Jeffrey Chans adjacent Momi Ramen, but cooking is equally authentic for items like skewered duck (served with scallion sauce), juicy sausage-stuffed chicken wings, bacon-wrapped hardboiled quail eggs, or grilled hamachi kama (super succulent yellowtail collar). Supplemental dishes, including pork buns and sauted veggies, also excel. $$$ Sushi Maki1000 S. Miami Ave., 305-415-9779Fans of the popular parent Sushi Maki in the Gables will find many familiar favorites on this Brickell branchs menu. But the must-haves are some inventive new dishes introduced to honor the eaterys tenth anniversary and Miami multiculturalism: sushi tacos (fried gyoza skins with fusion fillings like raw salmon, miso, chili-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. $$-$$$ SuViche49 SW 11th St., 305-960-7097 This small Japanese-Peruvian place serves food influenced by each nation distinctly, plus intriguing fusion items with added Caribbean touches. Cooked entres, all Peruvian, include an elegant aji de gallina (walnut-garnished chicken and potatoes in peppery cream sauce). But the emphasis is on contemporary ceviches/tiraditos (those with velvety aji amarillo chili 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 Perus traditional potato garnish, huancaina cheese sauce? $$Temaris1250 S. Miami Ave., 305-836-2747In Japan, temaris are ornamented hand balls, used since the Seventh Century for sport and as good luck folk-art objects. At this Japanese/Latin hot spot, temaris are reinterpreted, both playfully and artfully, as beautiful, bite-size sushi balls (each about half the size of normal nigiri): vinegary rice topped with sliced raw fish or beef, plus nipples constructed from several of the eaterys dozen-and-ahalf sauces. Fancier mini-balls feature fusion combinations like spicy tuna, almonds, and tobiko, or substitute crispy rice. Normal-size makis, small plates, and desserts are also fun. $$-$$$Tobacco Road626 S. Miami Ave., 305-374-1198Prohibition-era speakeasy (reputedly a fave of Al Capone), gay bar, strip club. Previously all these, this gritty spot has been best known since 1982 as a venue for live music, primarily blues. But it also offers food from lunchtime to late night (on weekends till 4:00 a.m.). The kitchen is especially known for its chili, budgetpriced steaks, and burgers. Theres also surprisingly elegant fare, though, like a Norwegian salmon club with lemon aioli. A meatsmoker in back turns out tasty ribs. $$Top Burger109 NE 1st St., 305-379-3100Inside this better burger spot, dcor is so charmingly 1950s retro you almost expect to find the Fonz leaning on a jukebox. What you actually find: hand-formed, hormone-free, 100% Angus patties (or alternatives like veggie burgers, a lightly-breaded chicken Milanesa, and all-beef hot dogs) on toasted buns, with fresh-cut French or sweet potato fries. Welcome surprises include an assertively spicy/tangy BBQ-like secret sauce; prices that, while not 1950s level, rival those at junkfood joints; and oldschool service -the kind that comes with a smile. $ Toro Toro100 Chopin Plaza, 305-372-4710Back before Miamis business district had any there there, the InterContinentals original restaurant was an executive lunch/ dinner destination mainly by default. This replacement, from restaurant empire-builder Richard Sandoval, brings downtown power dining into this decade. As the name suggests, you can go bullish with steakhouse fare, including an abbreviated (in variety, not quantity) rodizio experience. But the places strongest suit is its pan-Latin small plates -upscaled refinements of classic favorites: crisp corn arepas with short rib, guacamole, and crema fresca; fluffier cachapas pancakes with tomato jam; more. $$$-$$$$$ Trapiche Room1109 Brickell Ave., 305-329-3656With multiple Marriott hotels in Brickell and downtown, one of them housing high-profile db Bistro, its not surprising that this small, second-floor restaurant is something of a best kept secret. But it deserves discovery. Chef Maria Tobar hasnt Daniel Bouluds fame, but she does have classic European-type technical skills, combined with contemporary creativity that turns even ultimately old-fashioned items, like a pork/cabbage strudel, into 21st century fine-dining fare. Both dcor and service, similarly, are swelegant, not stuffy, and the rooms intimacy makes it a romantic spot for special occasions. $$$$Tre Italian Bistro270 E. Flagler St., 305-373-3303Bistro actually sounds too Old World for this cool hangout, from the owners of downtown old-timer La Loggia, but restolounge sounds too glitzy. Think of it as a neighborhood bistrolounge. The food is mostly modernized Italian, with Latin and Asian accents: a prosciutto-and-fig pizza with Brazilian catupiry cheese; gnocchi served either as finger food (fried, with calamata olive/truffle aioli), or plated with orange-ginger sauce. But there are tomato-sauced meatballs with rigawt for Grandpa Vinnie, too. $$-$$$Trulucks Seafood, Steak, and Crabhouse777 Brickell Ave., 305-579-0035Compared to other restaurants with such an upscale powerlunch/dinner setting, most prices are quite affordable here, espe cially if you stick to the Miami Spice-priced date-dinner menu, or happy hour, when seafood items like crab-cake sliders are half price. Most impressive, though, are seasonal stone crabs (from Trulucks own fisheries, and way less expensive than Joes) and other seafood that, during several visits, never tasted less than impeccably fresh, plus that greatest of Miami restaurant rarities: informed and gracious service. $$$-$$$$Tuyo415 NE 2nd St., 305-237-3200Atop the revolutionary Miami Culinary Institute, this upscale eatery, unlike the caf downstairs, isnt student-run. Rather its designed to showcase school ideals -including sustainability as well as definitive Miami cuisine. The changing menu, from a culinary Dream Team headed by New World Cuisine inventor/MCI instructor Norman Van Aken (plus former protgs Jeffrey Brana and Travis Starwalt), mixes citrus-inflected creamy conch chowder and other pioneering signatures with new inventions like mind-reelingly multidimensional oyster pan stew, or tartare of tuna and burstingly ripe tomato topped with a delicate sous vide egg. $$$$$Verde Restaurant & Bar1103 Biscayne Blvd., 305-375-8282Located in the Prez Art Museum Miami, this indoor/outdoor bayfront bistro, a project of restaurateur Stephen Starr, serves elegant, eco-friendly fare to match PAMMs green certification. (Museum admission not required.) Seafood crudos shine: hamachi sashimi slices flash-marinated in a subtle citrus/ponzu emulsion and enlivened by jalapeo relish; a sprout-topped, smoothly sauced tuna tartare with lemon and horseradish flavors substituting for clichd sesame. Light pizzas topped with near paper-thin zucchini slices, goat cheese, roasted garlic EVOO, and squash blossoms virtually define farm-to-table. And doughnuts with Cuban coffee dip are the definitively local dessert. $$-$$$Wolfgangs Steakhouse315 S. Biscayne Blvd., 305-487-7130Proprietor Wolfgang Zweiner worked for decades at Brooklyns legendary Peter Lugers before opening the first of his own much-praised, old-school steakhouses in 2003, which explains the quality of the USDA prime-grade steaks here -dry-aged on premises for bold, beefy flavor and tender but toothsome texture. Prices are prodigious but so are portions. The 32-ounce porter house for two easily feeds three or four folks curious to taste the difference. Plentiful sides include a bacon starter favored by those who love Canadian bacon over pork belly. Personally, just the simple, superb steaks leave us happy as clams. $$$$$Wok Town119 SE 1st Ave., 305-371-9993Judging from the takeout window, the minimalist dcor (with communal seating), and predominance of American veggies on the menu, this Asian fast-food eatery, owned by Shai Ben-Ami (a Miss Yip and Domo Japones veteran) May initially seem akin to those airport Oriental steam tables. Wrong. Custom-cooked by Chinese chefs, starters (like soy/garlic-coated edamame), salads, and have-it-your-way stir-fries, fried rice, or noodle bowls burst with bold, fresh flavor. The proof: a startlingly savory miso beef salad, with sesame/ginger/scallion dressing. Bubble tea, too! $$ Zuma270 Biscayne Blvd. Way, 305-577-0277This Miami River restolounge has a London parent on San Pellegrinos list of the worlds 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 voluminous menu, which offers ample temptations for vegetarians as well as carnivores. Our favorite is the melt-inyour-mouth pork belly with yuzu/mustard miso dip, but even the exquisitely-garnished tofu rocks. $$$$Midtown / Wynwood / Design District3 Chefs Chinese Restaurant1800 Biscayne Blvd. #105, 305-373-2688Until this eatery opened in late 2010, the solid Chinese restau rants in this neighborhood could be counted on the fingers of no hands. So its not surprising that most people concentrate on Chinese and Chinese/American fare. The real surprise is the remarkably tasty, budget-priced, Vietnamese fare. Try pho, 12 varieties of full-flavored beef/rice noodle soup (including our favorite, with well-done flank steak and flash-cooked eye round). All can be customized with sprouts and fresh herbs. Also impressive: Noodle combination plates with sauted meats, salad, and spring rolls. $$ B Sweet20 NE 41st St., 305-918-4453At this homey neighborhood jewel, located in a former apartment building, husband/wife team Tom Worhach and Karina Gimenez serve up warm welcomes and playfully inventive breakfast, lunch, and snack fare: bacon-wrapped egg and cheese cups; pressed Philly steak panini; an elegant yuzu-dressed smoked salmon, grapefruit, avocado, and arugula salad. But the must-eats are sweets, housemade by Worhach, formerly executive pastry chef at the Mansion at Turtle Creek and similar gourmet palaces. One bite of his decadent yet impossibly light white-and-dark chocolate mousse cake will hook you for life. $-$$ Basanis3221 NE 2nd Ave., 786-925-0911Despite this tiny places modern dcor, the family-run ambiance and Italian-American comfort food evoke the neighborhood redsauce joints that were our favored hangouts growing up in NJs Sopranos territory. And low prices make it possible to hang out here frequently. Pizzas with hand-tossed crusts, not wood-oven but resembling honest bread, for less than fast food pizzeria prices? Its an offer you dont refuse. Dont refuse garlic rolls, either, or sinful zeppole (fried dough) for dessert. Theres more complex fare, like chicken la Francese, too. And they deliver. $$Bengal2010 Biscayne Blvd., 305-403-1976At this Indian eatery the dcor is cool and contemporary: muted gray and earth-tone walls, tasteful burgundy banquettes. And the menu touts Modern Indian Cuisine to match the look. Classicists, however, neednt worry. Americas favorite familiar north Indian flavors are here, though dishes are generally more mildly spiced and presented with modern flair. All meats are certified halal, Islams version of kosher which doesnt mean that observant orthodox Jews can eat here, but Muslims can. $$$Bin No. 181800 Biscayne Blvd., 786-235-7575At this wine bar/caf, the dcor is a stylish mix of contemporary (high loft ceilings) and Old World (tables made from wine barrels). Cuisine is similarly geared to the areas smart new residents: creative sandwiches and salads at lunch, tapas and larger internationally themed Spanish, Italian, or French charcuterie platters at night. Though the place is small and family-run friendly, chef Alfredo Patino offers sophisticated snacks like the figciutto: aru gula, gorgonzola dolce, caramelized onions, pine nuts, fresh figs, and prosciutto. Free parking behind the building. $$Blackbrick3451 NE 1st Ave. #103; 305-573-8886Inspiration for the Chinese food at this hotspot came from authentic flavors Richard Hales (from Sakaya Kitchen)

PAGE 81

Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT S

PAGE 82

Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT Sencountered during travels in China, but the chefs considerable imagination figures in mightily. Example: Dont expect General Tsos chicken on the changing menu. The Generals Florida Gator, though, is a distinct possibility. Dishes less wild but still thrilling, due to strong spicing: bing (chewy Chinese flatbread) with char sui, garlic, and scallions; two fried tofu/veggie dishes (one hot, one not) savory enough to bring bean curd maligners (and confirmed carnivores) to their knees. $$-$$$ Bocce Bar3252 NE 1st Ave. #107; 786-245-6211A bocce court outside plus interior dcor imported from Italy, floor to ceiling, serve notice that this eaterys shareable small plates (salumi/cheeses, pastas, and composed antipasti featuring perfect produce) are thoroughly Italian-inspired. But all are elevated by inventive twists from chef Timon Balloo, of adjacent Sugarcane. Vegetarian dishes especially impress: creamy polenta with a poached egg, savory rapini, and shaved truffle; crispy artichoke with mustard-seed aioli; Thumbelina carrots with mascarpone and pistachio granola, a dish that magically makes the common root veggie a mouthful of wonderfulness; 25 year-aged balsamico ice cream. $$$Buena Vista Bistro 4582 NE 2nd Ave., 305-456-5909If a neighborhood eatery like this one which serves supremely satisfying bistro food were within walking distance of every Miami resident, wed be a helluva hip food town. Like true Parisian bistros, its open continuously, every day, with prices so low that you can drop in anytime for authentic rillettes (a rustic pt) with a crusty baguette, steak with from-scratch frites, salmon atop ratatouille, or many changing blackboard specials. Portions are plentiful. So is free parking. $$Buena Vista Deli4590 NE 2nd Ave., 305-576-3945At this casual caf/bakery, co-owned by Buena Vista Bistros 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 pts, sinfully rich pork rillettes, superb salami, and other charcuterie classics) are irresistible, and a butterycrusted, custardy quiche plus perfectly dressed salad costs little more than a fast-food combo meal. As for Postels homemade French sweets, if you grab the last Paris-Brest, a praline buttercream-filled puff pastry, we may have to kill you. $-$$ The Butcher Shop165 NW 23rd St., 305-846-9120Unbelievable but true: At the heart of this festive, budgetfriendly beer-garden restaurant is an old-school gourmet butcher shop, where sausages from classic (brats, chorizo) to creative (lamb and feta) are house-made, and all beef is certified USDA prime -rarely found at even fancy steakhouses. Take your selections home to cook, or better yet, eat them here, accompanied by intriguing Old/New World sauces, garnishes (like bleu cheese fritters), sides, and starters. Desserts include a bacon sundae. Beer? Try an organic brew, custom-crafted for the eatery. $$-$$$Cafeina297 NW 23rd St., 305-438-0792This elegantly comfortable multi-room indoor/outdoor venue is described as an art gallery/lounge, and some do come just for cocktails like the hefty caf con leche martinis. But dont overlook chef Guily Booths 12-item menu of very tasty tapas. The signature item is a truly jumbo-lump crab cake with no discernable binder. At one South Beach Wine & Food Festival, Martha Stewart proclaimed it the best shed ever had. Our own prime pick: melt-in-your-mouth ginger sea bass anticuchos, so butteryrich we nearly passed out with pleasure. $$ Catch Grill & Bar1633 N. Bayshore Dr., 305-536-6414A location within easy walking distance of the Arsht Center for the Performing Arts, in the extensively renovated 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. Its worth calling to ask if the daily catch is wreckfish, a sustainable local that tastes like a cross between grouper and sea bass. Bonus: With validation, valet parking is free. $$$-$$$$ Cerviceria 100 Montaditos3252 NE 1st Ave. #104, 305-921-4373Student budget prices, indeed. A first-graders allowance would cover a meal at this first U.S. branch of a popular Spanish chain. The 100 mini sandwiches (on crusty, olive oil-drizzled baguettes) vary from $1 to $2.50, depending not on ingredient quality but complexity. A buck scores genuine Serrano ham, while top-ticket fillings add imported Iberico cheese, pulled pork, and tomato to the cured-ham slivers. Other options revolve around pts, smoked salmon, shrimp, and similar elegant stuff. Theres cheap draft beer, too, plus nonsandwich snacks. $$City Hall the Restaurant2004 Biscayne Blvd. 305-764-3130After 30+ years spent guiding other owners restaurants to success, Miami Spice program creator Steve Haas has opened his own expansive, two-floor place, on a stretch of Biscayne Boulevard thats suddenly looking fashionable. The vibe is a mix of power-dining destination and comfie neighborhood hangout, and chef Tom Azar (ex-Emerils) 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 bchamel; 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. $$-$$$$The Cheese Course3451 NE 1st Ave. 786-220-6681Not so much a restaurant as an artisanal cheese shop with complimentary prepared foods, this places self-service caf compo nent nevertheless became an instant hit. Impeccable ingredients and inspired combinations make even the simplest salads and sandwiches unique -like bacon and egg, elevated by hand-crafted cream cheese, roasted red peppers, avocado, and chipotle Mayo. Cheese platters are exceptional, and customized for flavor preference from mild to bold, and accompanied by appropriate fruits, veggies, nuts, olives, prepared spreads, and breads. $$Crumb on Parchment3930 NE 2nd Ave., 305-572-9444Though located in a difficult spot (the Melin Buildings central atrium, invisible from the street), Michelle Bernsteins bakery/caf packs em in, partly due to Bernsteins 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 aioli. 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. $-$$ The Cypress Room3620 NE 2nd Ave., 305-520-5197Deer and boar heads on wood-paneled walls juxtapose with crystal chandeliers at this tiny fourth restaurant in Michael Schwartzs burgeoning empire, evoking feelings of dining in a century-old millionaires hunting lodge -in miniature. Many dishes are similarly fun fantasies of 1920s Florida fine dining, pairing yesteryears rustic proteins (including wild game) and veggies with preparations that are ultimately refined interpretations of the past: antelope/wild mushroom gnocchi; French onion soup with a sort of gruyere tuile float instead of the usual gooey melt, served on a lacy doily. Dont miss the royal red shrimp, or Hedy Goldsmiths desserts. $$$$$ Daily Melt3401 N. Miami Ave. #123, 305-573-0101Masterminded by Chef Allen Susser, the concept is to bring diners the comfort of homemade grilled cheese -like moms, if mom hadnt usually burned the bread and improperly melted the cheese. The Melts custom grill press browns/melts sandwiches perfectly every time. Additionally, Susser tested numerous allAmerican cheeses (no imports or artisanal products) for gooey goodness. Mom probably also didnt create combinations like cheddar with green apples and Virginia ham, or allow a simple signature grilled American cheese to be dressed up with truffle butter. Accompaniments include roasted tomato soup, chopped salads, and sweet melts like smores. $The Daily Creative Food Co.2001 Biscayne Blvd., 305-573-4535While the food formula of this contemporary caf is familiar sandwiches, salads, soups, breakfast food, and pastries, plus coffee and fruit drinks a creative concept differentiates the place. Signature sandwiches are named after national and local newspapers, including Biscayne Times, giving diners something to chat about. Sandwiches and salads can also be do-it-yourself projects, with an unusually wide choice of main ingredients, garnishes, breads, and condiments for the creatively minded. $The District190 NE 46th St., 305-573-4199At the house whose original restaurant tenant was One Ninety, dcor has been renovated dramatically from shabby to chic, and the pan-American gastropub cuisine also matches a more mature Miami. Horacio Rivaderos dishes reflect both Latin and American influences with considerable creative flair and fun. Favorites: lobster tacos with pickled cabbage, aji Amarillo escabeche, and crisped shallots; luscious lamb tartare, featuring toasted pignolias and mustard oil; and the Black Magic mousse, with vanilla/sweet potato drizzles, housemade marshmallows, and a pistachio cookie. $$$-$$$$El Bajareque278 NW 36th St., 305-576-5170Dozens of little Latin American eateries, all looking almost identically iffy, line 36th Street. But this family-owned bajareque (shack) is one where you definitely want to stop for some of Miamis most tasty, and inexpensive, Puerto Rican home cooking, from mondongo (an allegedly hangover-curing soup) to mofongo, a plantain/chicharron mash with varied toppings plus garlicky mojo. Housemade snacks are irresistible, too, and great take-out party fare: pork-studded pasteles, similar to Cuban tamals but with a tuber rather than corn masa dough, or empanadas with savory shrimp stuffing. $ Egg & Dart4029 N. Miami Ave., 786-431-1022While co-owners Costa Grillas (from Marias, a Coral Gables staple) and Niko Theodorou (whose family members have several Greek islands restaurants) describe their cuisine as rustic Greek, there is surprising sophistication in some dishes: an especially delicate taramasalata (cod roe dip); precisely crispfried smelts (like a freshwater sardine); galactobourico, an often heavy and cloyingly vanilla-saturated dessert, here custardy and enlivened by orange flavor. Extensive lists of mezze (snacks) and creative cocktails make the expansive, invitingly decorated space ideal for large gatherings of friends who enjoy sharing. $$$ Enriquetas Sandwich Shop186 NE 29th St., 305-573-4681This Cuban breakfast/lunch old-timer actually serves more than sandwiches (including mammoth daily specials )-and since reopening after a fire, does so in a cleanly renovated interior. But many hardcore fans never get past the parking lots ordering window, and outdoors really is the best place to manage Enriquetas mojo-marinated messy masterpiece: pan con bistec, dripping with sauted onions, melted cheese, and potato sticks; tomatoes

PAGE 83

Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT Smake the fats and calories negligible. Accompany with fresh orange juice or caf con leche, and youll never want anything else, except maybe a bib. $The Embassy4600 NE 2nd Ave., 305-571-8446Dont come to this embassy for passports. The name is short for Embassy of Well-being and Debauchery. You will, however, feel transported to Spains gourmet capital, San Sebastian, after sampling ambassador Alan Hughess cunning pintxos (complexly layered Basque-style tapas). From a self-serve bar, choose from a changing selection of skewered stacks; brie, homemade fig jam, and twizzles of silky jamon Serrano; roast tomato, goat cheese, and anchovies on buttery garlic toast; many more. Small plates, to-die-for desserts like floating island with lychees, and weekend brunch items demonstrate similar mad-chef skills. $$-$$$ Georges Kitchen & The Loft3404 N. Miami Ave., 305-438-9199Veteran Miami restaurateur George-Eric Farge raises the sophistication bar at his new two-story restaurant/lounge. But the real star is Michelin-starred chef Steven Rojas, who combines French technique and personal creativity for dishes like Idiazabal cheese churros with romesco sauce, a green pea pot de crme jar with bacon marmalade (accompanied by butter-fried baguette slices for spreading), soy-glazed hamachi crudo with ginger gelee, and caper-sprinkled short rib tartare, the meats richness cheekily upped by poached bone marrow and caviar. Brunch and lunch items are equally ingenious. $$$Gigi3470 N. Miami Ave., 305-573-1520As befits its location in artful, working-class Wynwood, Gigi has minimalist modern diner ambiance paired with truly creative contemporary Asian-influenced comfort food from Top Chef contender Jeff McInnis (formerly of the South Beach Ritz-Carlton) at surprisingly low prices. From a menu encompassing noodle and rice bowls, steambun ssams, grilled goodies, and raw items, highlights include pillowylight roast pork-stuffed buns, and possibly the worlds best BLT, featuring Asian bun toast, thick pork belly slices rather than bacon, and housemade pickles. Theres $2 beer, too. $-$$ Harrys Pizzeria3918 N. Miami Ave., 786-275-4963In this humble space (formerly Pizza Volante) are many key components from Michaels Genuine Food & Drink two blocks east -local/sustainable produce and artisan products; wood-oven cooking; homemade everything (including the ketchup accompanying crisp-outside, custardy-inside polenta fries, a circa 1995 Michael Schwartz signature snack from Nemo). Beautifully blistered, ultra-thin-crusted pizzas range from classic Margheritas to pies with house-smoked bacon, trugole (a subtly flavorful -fruity, not funky -Alpine cheese), and other unique toppings. Rounding things out: simple but ingenious salads, ultimate zeppoles, and Florida craft beers. $$Hurricane Grill & Wings Shops at Midtown MiamiBuena Vista Avenue, 305-576-7133This Florida fast/casual chain became an instant hit in Midtown Miami owing to a winning concept: more than 35 heat-coded sauces and dry rubs meant for custom-tossing with wings and other things (including white-meat boneless wings, really wingshaped chicken breast pieces), accompanied by ranch or classic blue-cheese dip and celery. It would be silly to not pair your main with garlic/herb-butter parmesan fries. There are many other items, too, including salads. But hey, celery is salad, right? $$ Jean Pauls House2426 NE 2nd Ave., 305-573-7373Jean Paul Desmaison, original chef/co-owner of La Cofradia in Coral Gables, has chosen a decidedly less tony, more transitional neighborhood for this venture. But inside his renovated bungalow, ambiance is stylishly cozy, and the creative contemporary North/South American fusion cuisine is as elegant as ever. Best bets are dishes influenced by Desmaisons native Peru, including crispy pork belly braised in pisco with silky sweet potato pure, and a beautifully balanced nikkei (Japanese/ Peruvian) salmon sashimi that does the impossible: tame leche de tigre, Perus infamous tigers milk marinade. $$$-$$$$ Jimmyz Kitchen2700 N. Miami Ave. #5, 305-573-1505No need to trek to South Beach for what many consider Miamis best classic Puerto Rican mofongo (fried green plantains mashed with fresh garlic, olive oil, and pork cracklings, surrounded by chicken or shrimp in zesty criollo sauce). This new location is bigger and better than the original, plus the mofongo is served every day, not just on weekends. But dont ignore the meal-size salads or high-quality sandwiches, including a pressed tripleta containing roast pork, bacon, Black Forest ham, provolone, and caramelized onions. $$Joeys Italian Caf2506 NW 2nd Ave., 305-438-0488The first new restaurant in the Wynwood Caf District, this stylish indoor/outdoor Italian hangout is as casually cool as one would hope and as affordable. Theres a five-buck half-serving of spaghetti al pomodoro and respectable vino for under $30. And few can resist delicately thin, crunchy-crusted pizzas like the cre ative Dolce e Piccante or orgasmic Carbonara. Pastas are fresh; produce is largely local; the mosaic-centered dcor is minimalist but inviting. And no need to be wary of the warehouse district at night: Valet parking is free. $$-$$$Kouzina Greek Bistro3535 NE 2nd Ave., 305-392-1825Across the tracks from Midtown Miami, this hidden-by-hedges spot features a patio with authentically festive ambiance and food by Alexia Apostolidi, also authentically Greek but known to locals for her critically acclaimed fare at defunct Ariston. The menu includes many mezes, both traditional (like tsatziki and eggplant spreads) and unusual (bacalao croquettes with garlic pure and roasted beet coulis; sesame-sprinkled manouri cheese envelopes), plus limited entres highlighted by cheese/ herb-crusted lamb at dinner and lunchtimes lamb pita wrap. Dont miss the semolina pure side -heavenly Greek cheese grits. $-$$$La Provence2200 Biscayne Blvd., 305-576-8002(See Brickell / Downtown listing.)Lagniappe3425 NE 2nd. Ave., 305-576-0108In New Orleans, lagniappe means a little extra, like the 13th doughnut in a bakers dozen. And thats what you get at this combination wine and cheese bar/backyard BBQ/entertainment venue. Choose artisan cheeses and charcuterie from the fridges, hand them over when you pay (very little), and theyll be plated with extras: olives, bread, changing luscious condiments. Or grab fish, chicken, veggies, or steak (with salad or cornbread) from the hidden yards grill. Relax in the comfie mismatched furniture, over extensive wine/beer choices and laidback live music. No cover, no attitude. $$ Lemoni Caf4600 NE 2nd Ave., 305-571-5080The menu here reads like your standard sandwiches/salads/ starters primer. What it doesnt convey is the freshness of the ingredients and the care that goes into their use. Entre-size salads range from an elegant spinach (goat cheese, pears, walnuts, raisins) to chunky homemade chicken salad on a bed of mixed greens. Sandwiches (cold baguette subs, hot pressed paninis, or wraps, all accompanied by side salads) include a respectable Cuban and a veggie wrap with a deceptively rich-tasting light salad cream. $-$$Lime Fresh Mexican GrillShops at Midtown Miami Buena Vista Avenue, 305-576-5463Like its South Beach predecessor, this Lime was an instant hit, as much for being a hip new Midtown hangout as for its carefully crafted Tex-Mex food. The concept is fast casual rather than fast food meaning nice enough for a night out. It also means ingredients are always fresh. Seafood tacos are about as exotic as the menu gets, but the mahi mahi for fish tacos comes from a local supplier, and salsas are housemade daily. Niceties include low-carb tortillas and many Mexican beers. $Limn y Sabor3045 Biscayne Blvd., 786-431-5739In this dramatically renovated space, the room is now light and open, and the food is authentic Peruvian, with seafood a specialty. Portions are huge, prices low, quality high. Especially good are their versions of pescado a lo macho (fish fillet topped with mixed seafood in a creamy, zesty sauce); jalea (breaded and deep-fried fish, mixed seafood, and yuca, topped with onion/pepper/lime salsa), and yuca in hot yet fruity rocoto chili cream sauce. $$Lost & Found Saloon185 NW 36th St., 305-576-1008Theres an artsy/alternative feel to this casual and friendly Wynwood eatery, which, since opening as a weekday-only breakfast and lunch joint in 2005, has grown with its neighborhood. Its now open for dinner six nights a week, serving Southwestern-style fare at rock-bottom prices. Dishes like pion and pepita-crusted salmon, chipotle-drizzled endive stuffed with lump crab, or customizable tacos average $5-$8. Also available: big breakfasts and salads, hearty soups, housemade pastries like lemon-crusted wild berry pie, and a hip beer and wine list. $Mandolin Aegean Bistro4312 NE 2nd Ave., 305-576-6066Inside this converted 1940s homes blue-and-white dining room -or even more atmospherically, its tree-sheltered garden -diners feast on authentic rustic fare from both Greece and Turkey. Make a meal of multinational mezes: a Greek sampler of creamy tzatziki yogurt dip, smoky eggplant pure, and airy tarama caviar spread; and a Turkish sampler of hummus, fava pure, and rich tomato-walnut dip. The meze of mussels in lemony wine broth is, with Mandolins fresh-baked flatbread, almost a full meal in itself. $$-$$$ MC Kitchen4141 NE 2nd Ave., 305-456-9948Chef/co-owner Dena Marino calls MCs food modern Italian -neither an evocative description nor explanation for why this place is one of our towns hottest tickets. But tasting tells the tale. Marinos food incorporates her entire culinary background, from her Nonnas traditional Italian-American kitchen to a long stint in Michael Chiarellos famed contemporary Californian eatery Tra Vigne, with pronounced personal twists that make eating here uniquely exciting. Particularly definitive: lunchtimes piadenas, saladlike seasonal/regional ingredient combinations atop heavenly homemade flatbreads. Cocktails feature ingredients from zaatar to salmon roe. $$$-$$$$ Mercato4141 NE 2nd Ave., 786-332-3772Adjacent to Dena Marinos hot hangout MC Kitchen, the contemporary Italian chefs artisanal market and breakfast/lunch caf is for diners wanting a quicker (but not fast-food) sit-down meal, or inventive take-out. Pressed for time? Try a pressed sandwich like Marinos Italian Cubano (porchetta, prosciutto cotto, Swiss, pickles, and Dijon mustard dressing, on ciabatta). Along with hot or cold sandwiches, theres a wide variety of homemade breakfast pastries, breads, cookies, and fresh-baked quiches, plus salads and a daily-changing soup. Market items include exotic jams, craft beers, and Marinos private label EVOO. $-$$

PAGE 84

Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT S Mercadito Midtown3252 NE 1st Ave., 786-369-0423Some people frequent this fashionable restolounge, festooned with graffiti-style murals designed to evoke a bustling Mexican street market, just for the dangerously smooth margaritas. But the main must-haves here are tacos, encased in a rarity: genuinely made-from-scratch corn tortillas, small but fatly-stuffed. Of 11 varieties, our favorite is the carnitas (juicy braised pork, spicy chili de arbol slaw, toasted peanuts). A close second: the hongos, intensely flavorful huitlacoche and wild mushrooms, with manchego and salsa verde -a reminder that vegetarian food need not be bland. $$-$$$Michaels Genuine Food and Drink130 NE 40th St., 305-573-5550An instant smash hit, this truly neighborhood-oriented restaurant from chef Michael Schwartz offers down-to-earth fun food in a comfortable, casually stylish indoor/outdoor setting. Fresh, organic ingredients are emphasized, but dishes range from cutting-edge (crispy beef cheeks with whipped celeriac, celery salad, and chocolate reduction) to simple comfort food: deviled eggs, homemade potato chips with pan-fried onion dip, or a whole wood-roasted chicken. Theres also a broad range of prices and portion sizes to encourage frequent visits. Michaels Genuine also features an eclectic, affordable wine list and a full bar. $$-$$$$Mikes at Venetia555 NE 15th St., 9th floor, 305-374-5731This family-owned Irish pub, on the pool deck of the Venetia condo, for more than 15 years has been a popular lunch and dinner hang-out for local journalists and others who appreciate honest cheap eats and drinks. Regulars know daily specials are the way to go. Depending on the day, fish, churrasco, or roast turkey with all the trimmings are all prepared fresh. Big burgers and steak dinners are always good. A limited late-night menu provides pizza, wings, ribs, and salad till 3:00 a.m. $-$$Morgans Restaurant28 NE 29th St., 305-573-9678Housed in a beautifully refurbished 1930s private home, Morgans serves eclectic, sometimes internationally influenced contemporary American cuisine compelling enough to attract hordes. Dishes are basically comfort food, but ultimate comfort food: the most custardy, fluffy French toast imaginable; shoe string frites that rival Belgiums best; mouthwatering maple-basted bacon; miraculously terrific tofu (crisply panko-crusted and apricot/soy-glazed); even a voluptuous grilled cheese sandwich -definitely a dont ask, dont tell your cardiologist item. $$-$$$NoVe Kitchen & Bar1750 N. Bayshore Dr., 305-503-1000At NoVe, the restolounge at the Opera Tower condo in NoVe (new nickname for the bayfront neighborhood north of the Venetian Causeway), the food is East-West. Meaning you can get burgers, pasta, and so on, or try the inventive Asian small plates and sushi specialties Hiro Terada originated at his past posts, Doraku and Moshi Moshi: the Atlantis roll (tempura conch with asparagus, avocado, scallions, and curry sauce); spicy, crunchy fried tofu atop kimchi salad; much more. Open 6:00 a.m. for breakfast to 3:00 a.m., it is kid-friendly and dog-friendly, too. $$-$$$Oak Tavern35 NE 40th St., 786-391-1818With a festively lantern-lit oak tree on the outdoor dining patio and stylishly playful lamps mimicking oaks inside, chef/restaurateur David Bracha of River Oyster Bar has transformed a previously cold space to warm. Food is equally inviting. The mostly small-plates seasonal menu roams the globe from supreme Vietnamese bahn mi (with pork belly and foie gras) to downhome buttermilk biscuits with bacon butter, and homemade char cuterie. If available, dont miss Hawaiian-inspired steelhead poke; substituting the salmonlike but more delicate trout for the usual tuna transports this crudo to heavenly heights. $$-$$$ Orange Caf + Art2 NE 40th St., 305-571-4070The paintings hanging in this tiny, glass-enclosed caf are for sale. And for those who dont have thousands of dollars to shell out for the local art on the walls, less than ten bucks will get you art on a plate, including a Picasso: chorizo, prosciutto, manchego cheese, baby spinach, and basil on a crusty baguette. Other artfully named and crafted edibles include salads, daily soups, several pastas (like the Matisse, fiocchi pouches filled with pears and cheese), and house-baked pastries. $ Palatino3004 NW 2nd Ave., 786-360-5200When longtime favorite Jamaican joint Clives fell victim to gentrification, few expected to find similarly skilled old-school Caribbean-American soul food in Wynwood again, especially not at old-school prices. But thats what this small, super-friendly mom-and-pop spot serves up: breakfasts like ackee and salt fish, fried dumpling and callaloo, or an egg/maple sausage/cheese grits combo; plates (with sides) of oxtails, curry goat, jerk chicken; richly crusted piquant chicken or meat patties that contend with Miamis best. Surprises include homemade pastries, and $1 ice cream cones in tropical flavors like soursop. $-$$ Pashas 3801 Biscayne Blvd., 305-573-0201(See Brickell/Downtown listing)Pride & Joy2800 N. Miami Ave., 305-456-9548Behind this Wynwood warehouse faade youll find pure Southern roadhouse, and the backyard patio is an even more relaxing place to kick back with beer, blues music, and barbecue from pit master Myron Mixon. Oddly, considering Mixons many BBQ championships, the cue can be inconsistent. Our favorite choices: St. Louis ribs, tender without being falling-off-the bone overcooked, and enjoyably fattier than baby backs; vinegar-doused pulled pork sandwiches, which, unlike meat plates, come with sides -fries, plus slaw to pile on for added juice and crunch. $$$ Primos1717 N. Bayshore Dr., 305-371-9055The imposing, cavernous lobby of the Grand doesnt have that do drop in locals hangout vibe. But this lively Italian spot is actually a great addition to the neighborhood. The pizzas alone brick-oven specimens with toppings ranging from classic pepperoni to prosciutto/arugula would be draw enough. But pastas also please: diners choice of starch, with mix-and-match sauces and extras. And the price is right, with few entres topping $20. The capper: Its open past midnight every day but Sunday. $$Sakaya KitchenShops at Midtown Miami, Buena Vista Avenue 305-576-8096This chef-driven, fast-casual Asian eatery is more an izakaya (in Japan, a pub with food) than a sakaya (sake shop). But why quibble about words with so many more intriguing things to wrap your mouth around? The concept takes on street-food favorites from all over Asia, housemade daily from quality fresh ingredients. French Culinary Institute-trained Richard Hales does change his menu, so wed advise immediately grabbing some crispy Korean chicken wings and Chinese-inspired, open-faced roast pork buns with sweet chili sauce and homemade pickles. $$ Sake Room 275 NE 18th St., 305-755-0122Sake takes a back seat to sushi and sophisticated dcor at this small but sleek restolounge. Among the seafood offerings, you wont find exotica or local catches, but all the usual sushi/ sashimi favorites, though in more interesting form, thanks to sauces that go beyond standard soy spicy sriracha, garlic/ ponzu oil, and many more. Especially recommended: the yuzu hamachi roll, the lobster tempura maki, and panko-coated spicy shrimp with hot-and-sour Mayo and a salad. $$-$$$Salad Creations2001 Biscayne Blvd., 305-576-5333At this fast-casual restaurant, diners can enjoy a wide variety ofchef-created salads and wraps, or go the DIY route, choosing from one of four greens options; four dozen add-ons (fresh, dried, or pickled veggies and fruits, plus cheeses and slightly sinful pleasures like candied pecans or wonton strips); a protein (seafood or poultry); and two dozen dressings, ranging from classic (Thousand Island, bleu cheese) to creative contemporary (spicy Asian peanut, cucumber wasabi, blueberry pomegranate). Additionally, the place creates lovely catering platters, plus individual lunchboxes -perfect picnic or plane food. $-$$ Salumeria 1043451 NE 1st Ave. #104, 305-424-9588In Italy, salumerias started, like American delicatessens, as shops selling salumi (cured meats), but evolved into the equivalent of eat-in deli/restaurants that also serve cold and hot prepared foods. At this modern Midtown salumeria, the soupsto-salads-to-sweets range of fare is the same. Custom-sliced imported cold cuts are a main focus, especially for those who enjoy taste-testing a plate pairing Italys two most famous pro sciuttos: Parma and San Daniele. But homemade pastas are also impressive, as are hard-to-find regional entres like fegato alla Veneziana, which will turn liver-haters into lovers. $$-$$$ Salsa Fiesta2929 Biscayne Blvd., 305-400-8245The first stateside offshoot of a popular Venezuelan mini chain, this urban Mexican grill serves health-conscious, made-freshdaily fare similar in concept to some fast-casual competitors. But there are indeed differences here, notably pan-Latin options: black beans as well as red; thin, delightfully crunchy tostones (available as a side or as the base for a uniquely tasty take on normal nachos). Other pluses include weekday happy hours with two-for-one beers -and free parking. $-$$ S & S Diner1757 NE 2nd Ave., 305-373-4291Some things never change, or so it seems at this classic diner. Open since 1938, people still line up on Saturday mornings, waiting for a seat at the counter and enormous breakfasts: corned beef hash or crab cakes and eggs with grits; fluffy pancakes; homemade biscuits with gravy and Georgia sausage everything from oatmeal to eggs Benedict. The lunch menu is a roll call of the usual suspects, but most regulars ignore the menu and go for the daily blackboard specials. $-$$Shokudo World Resource Caf 4740 NE 2nd Ave., 305-758-7782At its former Lincoln Road location, World Resources caf was better known for people-watching than for its standard sushi/ Thai menu. But as the new name signals, this relocation is a reinvention. The indoor/outdoor space is charming, but creative takes on popular pan-Asian street foods are the real draw. Travel from Japan and Thailand through Korea, Vietnam, China, the Philippines, and beyond via light housemade momo, curried potato-stuffed Tibetan/Nepalese steamed dumplings; savory pulled pork buns with kimchi and crisped onions. Noodle dishes, hot or chilled, are especially appealing. $$-$$$ Soi Chinese Kitchen645 NW 20th St., 305-482-0238No chop suey. No kung pao anything, either. In fact, anything on Sois menu that sounds like something from a normal Chinese eatery wont be: char sui ribs come with delicate corn pancakes, wonton soup is kafir lime broth with a mushroom/truffle-butterstuffed ravioli, lo mein is housemade noodles with pork belly and sous vide 63-degree egg. Basically its contemporary Chinese fine dining fare similar in creativity and quality ingredients to ultra-upscale Hakkasans, but served by a tiny take-out joint (with a few patio tables and counter stools) at neighborhood prices. $$Sugarcane Raw Bar Grill3250 NE 1st Ave., 786-369-0353This chic indoor/outdoor space is an offspring of Lincoln Roads SushiSamba Dromo and a sibling of Sugarcane lounges in NYC and Las Vegas, but more informal than the former and more food-oriented than the latter, as three kitchens -normal, raw bar, and robata charcoal grill -make clear. Chef Timon Balloos LatAsian small plates range from subtle orange/fennel-marinated salmon crudo to intensely smoky-rich short ribs. At the daily happy hour, select dishes (like steamed pork buns with apple kimchi) are discounted. $$-$$$SuViche2751 N. Miami Ave., 305-960-7097As its fusion name suggests, this artsy indoor/outdoor eatery doesnt merely serve a mix of Japanese sushi and Latin ceviches but a true fusion of both, largely owing to signature sauces (many based on Perus citusy/creamy acevichado emulsion with Japanese spicing) that are applied to sushi rolls and ceviche bowls alike. Additionally there are some popular Peruvian-fusion cooked dishes like Chifa (Peruvian-Chinese) lomo saltado, served traditionally, as an entre, or creatively in springs rolls). To add to the fun, accompany your meal with a cocktail from Miamis only pisco bar. $$-$$$ Thea Pizzeria-Caf1951 NW 7th Ave., 305-777-3777Just over the border from artsy Wynwood, this ultra-cool caf (whose interior features a 30-foot Italian glass floral mosaic) isnt what youd expect to find inside one of the medical/lab buildings in Miamis sterile Health District. But the owner is Thea Goldman, former founding partner of Wynwoods pioneer ing restolounge Joeys, which explains both the stylishness and the menu, highlighted by imaginative wood-oven designer pizzas, plus artisan charcuterie/cheese platters, creative salads, and housemade salted caramel gelato. Not your typical hospital food. Call ahead regarding dinner. At this writing, its being served Fridays only. $$-$$$Tony Chans Water Club1717 N. Bayshore Dr., 305-374-8888The dcor at this upscale place, located in the Grand, looks too glitzy to serve anything but politely Americanized Chinese food. But the American dumbing-down is minimal. Many dishes are far more authentic and skillfully prepared than those found elsewhere in Miami, like delicate but flavorful yu pan quail. Moist sea bass fillet has a beautifully balanced topping of scallion, ginger, cilantro, and subtly sweet/salty sauce. And Peking duck is served as three traditional courses: crpe-wrapped crispy skin, meat sauted with crisp veggies, savory soup to finish. $$-$$$Wine Vault MiamiShops at Midtown Miami Fountain Circle #105, 786-691-2000From a Wine Vault press release: Over 1300 square feet of pure decadence. In fact, the soaring, two-story space, complete with glass elevator, has a look that lives up to the hype. But the most decadent thing inside is a nibble from its tapas list: chocolatecovered bacon. Go ahead and make a meal of it. We grown-ups can eat what we want. More substantial plates to accompany the roughly four dozen wines, artisan beers, or cocktails include chorizo with new potatoes, and sweetly piquant piquillo peppers stuffed with shredded tuna. Happy-hour wine prices are so low wed better not mention them. $$-$$$ Wynwood Kitchen & Bar2550 NW 2nd Ave., 305-722-8959The exterior is eye-popping enough, with murals from worldfamous outdoor artists, but its the interior that grabs you. Colorful and exotic work by Shepard Fairey, Christian Awe, and other acclaimed artists makes it one of the most striking restau rant spaces anywhere. As for food, the original menu has been replaced with Spanish/Latin/Mediterranean-inspired favorites from chef Miguel Aguilar (formerly of Alma de Cuba): gazpacho or black bean soups; shredded chicken ropa vieja empanadas with cilantro crema; grilled octopus skewers with tapenade; plus fingerling potato-chorizo hash and other seasonal farm-to-table veg dishes. $$-$$$ Upper EastsideAndiamo5600 Biscayne Blvd. 305-762-5751With brick-oven pizzerias popping up all over town the past few years, its difficult to remember the dark days when this part of Mark Soykas 55th Street Station complex was mainland Miamis sole source of open-flame-cooked pies. But the pizzas still hold up against the newbie pack, especially since exec chef Frank Crupi has upped the ante with unique-to-Miami offerings like a white (tomato-free) New Haven clam pie. Also available: salads, panini, and a tasty meatball appetizer with ricotta. Theres a respectable wine and beer list, too. $$Balans Biscayne6789 Biscayne Blvd., 305-534-9191It took longer than expected, but this Brit imports third Miami venue finally opened, and rather quietly -which has an upside. Its easier to get a table here (and to park, thanks to the free lot on 68th Street) than at Lincoln Road or Brickell. This, along with the venues relatively large, open-to-the-street outdoor area, contributes to a more relaxed, neighborhood-focused vibe. The fun menu of global comfort food is the same (ranging from a creamycentered cheese souffl through savory Asian potstickers and, at breakfast, fluffy pecan/maple-garnished pancakes) and prepared as reliably well. $$-$$$Biscayne Diner8601 Biscayne Blvd., 305-756-9910 At this architecturally mixed-era diner (signage: 1960s Jetsons; building: 1930s urban-gritty), the menu is equally eclectic. Example: The entre section includes meatloaf, but the other half-dozen dishes are Italian. Hefty burgers are always terrific. Otherwise, the chef seems most excited by experimentation, so the blackboards Daily Specials are the interesting way to go, whether the item is an ambitious quail or a fresh-baked oldfashioned pie. If we could stop stuffing ourselves silly on the big, fat, breaded onion rings, we could tell you more. But thats not gonna happen.

PAGE 85

Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT SBlue Collar6730 Biscayne Blvd., 305-756-0366Like its predecessor in this space (Michael Bloises American Noodle Bar), this working-class-themed eatery is helmed by a former fine-dining chef, Daniel Serfer, a Chef Allens vet who now crafts casual, creative fare at prices all can afford. Dishes are eclectic. The roughly dozen veggie dishes alone range from curried cauliflower pure to maduros to bleu cheese roasted asparagus. Shrimp and grits compete with any in Charleston; pork and beans, topped with a perfectly runny fried egg, beats Bostons best. $-$$Boteco916 NE 79th St., 305-757-7735This strip of 79th Street is rapidly becoming a cool alt-culture enclave thanks to inviting hangouts like this rustic indoor/outdoor Brazilian restaurant and bar. Especially bustling on nights featuring live music, its even more fun on Sundays, when the fenced backyard hosts an informal fair and the menu includes Brazils national dish, feijoada, a savory stew of beans plus fresh and cured meats. But the everyday menu, ranging from unique, tapas-like pasteis to hefty Brazilian entres, is also appealing and budget-priced. $$B & M Market219 NE 79th St., 305-757-2889Dont let the rustic look of this mom-and-pop Caribbean market/eatery, or its ungentrified location, scare you. Walk to the kitchen in the back of the market, order, and then either eat-in (at two tables) or take-out some of Miamis tastiest, and cheapest, West Indian food. Celeb chef Michelle Bernstein is a longtime fan of the jerk chicken, ackee and saltfish, and pigeon peas and rice cooked in coconut milk. Rotis rule here; the flatbreads come plain or, better yet, in curry chicken, goat, or remarkably full-flavored vegetarian versions. $DeVitas7251 Biscayne Blvd., 305-754-8282This Italian/Argentine pizzeria, housed in a charming bungalow and featuring a breezy patio, covers multicultural bases. If the Old World Rucola pizza (a classic Margherita topped with arugula, prosciutto, and shredded parmesan) doesnt do the trick, the New World Especial (a Latin pie with hearts of palm and boiled eggs) just might. Also available are pastas, salads, sandwiches, dinner entres (eggplant parmigiana with spaghetti, lomito steak with Argentinean potato salad), and desserts (tiramisu or flan). $ Dogma Grill7030 Biscayne Blvd. 305-759-3433Since Frankie and Priscilla Crupi took over this hot dog stand, the menu has changed significantly, with some items eliminated (any vegetarian hot dogs, salads, chichi toppings like avocado). But choices have expanded to include new dog choices (brats, Italian sausage, more) plus burgers and other classic eastern U.S. regional urban street foods: New England lobster rolls, New Orleans poboys, Jersey shore cheese Taylors (pork roll), Baltimore crab cake sandwiches, and naturally, Phillys of all sorts -cheese steak and beyond. $-$$ East Side Pizza731 NE 79th St., 305-758-5351Minestrone, sure. But a pizzeria menu with carrot ginger soup? Similarly many Italian-American pizzerias offer entres like spaghetti and meatballs, but East Side also has pumpkin ravioli in brown butter/sage sauce, wild mushroom ravioli, and other surprisingly upscale choices, including imported Peroni beer. As for the pizza, they are classic pies, available whole or by the slice, made with fresh plum tomato sauce and Grande mozzarella (considered the top American pizza cheese). Best seating for eating is at the sheltered outdoor picnic tables. $Fiorito5555 NE 2nd Ave., 305-754-2899While owners Max and Cristian Alvarezs description of their eatery as a little Argentinean shack is as charming as the brothers themselves, it conveys neither the places cool warmth nor the foods exciting elegance. Dishes are authentically Argentine, but far from standard steakhouse stuff. Chef Cristians background at popular pop-up The Dining Room becomes instantly understandable in dishes like orange and herb-scented lechon confit (with pumpkin mash, pickled cabbage salad, and Dijon mojo) or sopa de calabaza, derived from Argentinas peasant stew locro, but here a refined, creamy soup. Many more surprises -even steaks. $$-$$$ The Federal Food, Drink & Provisions5132 Biscayne Blvd., 305-758-9559At the Fed, expect what locals know to expect from sommelier/ chef team Aniece Meinhold and Cesar Zapata, whose previous restaurant concepts have included Blue Piano (gourmet stoner snacks) and Vietnamese pop-up Phuc Yea. That is, expect the unexpected. The Fed is an updated tavern featuring creative, from-scratch takes on traditional American regional dishes: flaky Southern biscuits with sausage gravy (and crisp-coated sweetbreads, if desired); Northeastern-inspired pig wings (pork drummettes with homemade Buffalo sauce, blue cheese mousse, and pickled veggies). Desserts, from third partner Alejandro Ortiz, include sinful sticky buns. $$-$$$ Garden of Eatin136 NW 62nd St., 305-754-8050Housed in a yellow building thats nearly invisible from the street, the Garden has the comfortable feel of a beach bar, and generous servings of inexpensive Afro-Caribbean vegan food. Large or small plates, with salad and fried sweet plantains (plus free soup for eat-in lunchers), are served for five or seven bucks. Also available are snacks like vegetarian blue corn tacos, desserts like sweet potato pie, and a breakfast menu featuring organic blueberry waffles with soy sausage patties. $Jimmys East Side Diner7201 Biscayne Blvd., 305-754-3692Open for more than 30 years, Jimmys respects the most important American diner tradition: breakfast at any hour. And now that the place is open for dinner, you can indulge your breakfast cravings for several more hours. There are blueberry hot cakes and pecan waffles; eggs any style, including omelets and openface frittatas; and a full range of sides: biscuits and sausage gravy, grits, hash, hash browns, even hot oatmeal. And dont forget traditional diner entres like meat loaf, roast turkey, liver and onions, plus burgers, salad platters, and homemade chicken soup. $-$$La Tour Eiffel7281 Biscayne Blvd., 305-754-0014 This cute restaurant/crperie serves three meals, from traditional French breakfasts of croissants/baguettes and jam, or heftier ones including pain perdu (real French toast), to dinners featuring a chefs special $28.90 two-course meal of classics: country pt, Provencal fish soup, bold boeuf bourgignon, creamy-rich poulet la Normande, a moules/frites that even comes with a glass of muscadet, and many more starter/entre choices. But definitely dont miss the crpes, served all day in both sweet and savory varieties -the latter made correctly, for a change, with heftier buckwheat flour. $$-$$$$ Lo De Lea7001 Biscayne Blvd., 305-456-3218 In Casa Toscanas former space, this cute, contemporary parillada is proof that you can have an Argentinean meal and a cho lesterol test in the same month. While traditional parillada dishes are tasty, theyre meat/fat-heavy, basically heaps of grilled beef. Here the grill is also used for vegetables (an unusually imaginative assortment, including bok choi, endive, and fennel), two of which are paired with your protein of choice. You can indulge in a mouthwateringly succulent vacio (flank steak), and walk out without feeling like youre the cow. $$-$$$Magnum Lounge709 NE 79th St., 305-757-3368Its a restaurant. Its a lounge. But its decidedly not a typical Miami restolounge, or like anything else in Miami. Forbidding from the outside, on the inside its like a time-trip to a cabaret in pre-WWII Berlin: bordello-red dcor, romantically dim lighting, show-tune live piano bar entertainment, and to match the ambiance, elegantly updated retro food served with style and a smile. For those feeling flush, home-style fried chicken is just like mom used to make in her wildest dreams. $$$Metro Organic Bistro 7010 Biscayne Blvd., 305-751-8756 Big changes have come to Karma the car wash, the first being a separate new name for the revamped restaurant: Metro Organic Bistro, an all-organic fine-dining restaurant where simple preparations reveal and enhance natural flavors. An entirely new menu places emphasis on grilled organic meat and fish dishes. Try the steak frites organic, grass-fed skirt steak with organic chimichurri and fresh-cut fries. Vegetarians will love the organic portabella foccacia. Dine either inside the architect-designed restaurant or outdoors on the patio. Beer and wine. $-$$$ Michys6927 Biscayne Blvd., 305-759-2001Dont even ask why Michele Bernstein, with a top-chef rsum, not to mention regular Food Network appearances, opened a homey restaurant in an emerging but far from fully gentrified neighborhood. Just be glad she did, as you dine on white almond gazpacho or impossibly creamy ham and blue cheese croquetas. Though most full entres also come in half-size portions (at almost halved prices), the tab can add up fast. The star herself is usually in the kitchen. Parking in the rear off 69th Street. $$$-$$$$ Minas Mediterraneo749 NE 79th St., 786-391-0300Unlike most restaurants labeled Mediterranean, this one, deco rated with restrained modern elegance, really does have dishes from countries surrounding all sides of the sea (though not necessarily from the countries seaside regions, as boeuf Bourguignon attests). Our favorites, like owner Yasmine Kotb, whose heritage is Egyptian-via-Texas, and her mom, the chef, are those featuring exotic Eastern/North African tastes -with twists. Especially fun: Egypts besara, a light fava-based hummus; falafel sliders in warm pita with Israeli salad, slaw, and tahini; and an unusual side of grilled kale with yogurt dressing and hazelnuts. $$Mi Vida Caf7244 Biscayne Blvd., 305-759-6020At this indoor/outdoor vegetarian and raw-food vegan caf, culinary-school-trained chef/owner Daniela Lagamma produces purist produce-oriented dishes that are easy to understand, like spar kling-fresh salads and smoothies, plus more technique-intensive mock meat or cheese items, based on soy proteins, that satisfy even confirmed carnivores. Particularly impressive on the regular menu: a superior Sloppy Joe made with mushroom confit, braised homemade seitan, spinach, and rich almond romescu sauce; and cannelloni de verdura, homemade crepes stuffed with spinach and cashew ricotta. Do check the daily specials, too. $$-$$$Moonchine7100 Biscayne Blvd., 305-759-3999Like its Brickell-area sibling Indochine, this friendly Asian bistro serves fare from three nations: Japan, Thailand, and Vietnam. Menus are also similar, split between traditional dishes like pad Thai and East/West fusion creations like the Vampire sushi roll (shrimp tempura, tomato, cilantro, roasted garlic). But it also carves out its own identity with original creations, including yellow curry-spiced fried rice. Nearly everything is low in sodium, fat, and calories. A large rear patio is inviting for dining and entertainment. $$-$$$Moshi Moshi 7232 Biscayne Blvd., 786-220-9404This offspring of South Beach old-timer Moshi Moshi is a cross between a sushi bar and an izakaya (Japanese tapas bar). Even more striking than the hip dcor is the foods unusually upscale quality. Sushi ranges from pristine individual nigiri to over-the-top maki rolls. Tapas are intriguing, like arabiki sausage,

PAGE 86

86 Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT S a sweet-savory pork fingerling frank; rarely found in restaurants even in Japan, theyre popular Japanese home-cooking items. And rice-based plates like Japanese curry (richer/sweeter than Indian types) satisfy even the biggest appetites. $-$$$News Lounge5582 NE 4th Ct., 305-758-9932Mark Soykas new News is, as its name suggests, more a friendly neighborhood hangout and watering hole than a full-fledged eatery. Nevertheless the menu of light bites is along with other lures like an inviting outdoor patio and rest rooms that resemble eclectic art galleries part of the reason visitors stay for hours. Especially recommended are fat mini-burgers with chipotle ketchup; a brie, turkey, and mango chutney sandwich on crusty baguette; and what many feel is the original cafs Greatest Hit: creamy hummus with warm pita. $Ni.Do. Caffe & Mozzarella Bar7295 Biscayne Blvd., 305-960-7022Dont let this little cafs easily overlooked strip-mall location, or its informal interior, fool you. The warm welcome is authentically Italian, as are cleverly crafted antipasti, simple but full-flavored pastas, and homemade pastries (from rosemary breadsticks to fruit-topped dessert tortas) that will transport your taste buds to Tuscany. And the housemade mozzarella or burrata cheeses -truly milk elevated to royalty -will transport you to heaven. A small market area provides Italian staples, plus superb salumi and the magnificent mozz, to go. $$-$$$Royal Bavarian Schnitzel Haus1085 NE 79th St., 305-754-8002With Christmas lights perpetually twinkling and party noises emanating from a new outdoor biergarten, this German restaurant is owner Alex Richters one-man gentrification project, transforming a formerly uninviting stretch of 79th Street one pils at a time. The fare includes housemade sausages (mild veal bratwurst, hearty mixed beef/ pork bauernwurst, spicy garlicwurst) with homemade mustard and catsup; savory yet near-greaseless potato pancakes; and, naturally, schnitzels, a choice of delicate pounded pork, chicken, or veal patties served with a half-dozen different sauces. $$-$$$Siam Rice7941 Biscayne Blvd., 305-758-0516Youll find all the familiar favorite Thai and Japanese items here, and prices for curries and noodle dishes (all customizable regarding choice of protein, preparation, and heat level) are especially good at lunch. But dont overlook somewhat pricier specialties like a deep-fried yet near-greaseless boneless half duck with veggies in red curry sauce. Theres also an unusually extensive list of salads, some with inventive fusion touches, like a grilled shrimp/ soba salad featuring traditional Thai flavors (sriracha chiles, fish sauce, lime) and Japanese green tea noodles. $-$$$ Soyka5556 NE 4th Court, 305-759-3117Since opening in 1999, Soyka has often been credited with sparking the Upper Eastsides revival. But the 2010 arrival of three Joe Allen veterans as executive chef, pastry chef, and sommelier signaled a culinary revival for the restolounge, always a neighborhood focal point, now more food-focused. The contemporary comfort food menu ranges from fun small plates (deviled eggs with smoked salmon and dill, crisp-fried fiocchi pockets with gorgonzola sauce, oysters Rockefeller) to heftier items like burgers and steak au poivre. And dont miss the sticky date/toffee pudding. $$-$$$ Sushi Siam5582 NE 4th Ct., 305-751-7818On the menu of sushi-bar specialties plus a small selection of Thai and Japanese cooked dishes, there are a few surprises, such as a unique lobster maki thats admittedly huge in price ($25.95), but also in size: six ounces of crisp-fried lobster chunks, plus asparagus, avocado, lettuce, tobiko (flying fish), masago (smelt) roes, and special sauces. Thai dishes come with a choice of more than a dozen sauces, ranging from traditional red or green curries to the inventive, such as an unconventional honey sauce. $$$Sweet Saloon7100 Biscayne Blvd., 305-759-3999At this dessert/snack/cocktail bar, from the owner of Moonchine, youll find live and DJ entertainment, too, from 9:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m.-assuming you can find the place, that is. Its above the panAsian eatery, up a hidden back staircase. Asian savory snacks include dumplings, edamame, krab rangoons, satays. Desserts range from homey American (NY cheesecake, mini cupcakes) to continental (strawberries melba, housemade Belgian waffles, a shareable chocolate fondue/fruit platter). Actually, some cocktails double as desserts (a Godiva dark chocolate martini) or Asian savories (infusion jars of Stoli and lemongrass). $$NORTH BAY VILLAGEOggis Caffe1666 79th St. Causeway, 305-866-1238This cozy, romantic spot started back in 1989 as a pasta factory (supplying numerous high-profile restaurants) as well as a neighborhood eatery. And the wide range of budget-friendly, home made pastas, made daily, remains the main draw for its large and loyal clientele. Choices range from homey, meaty lasagna to luxuriant crab ravioli with creamy lobster sauce, with occasional forays into creative exotica such as seaweed spaghettini, with sea scallops, shitakes, and fresh tomatoes. $$-$$$Paprika1624 NE 79th St., 305-397-8777 This exotically decorated restaurant, serving Mediterranean cuisine from North Africa and the Middle East, has several unusual features, including Friday-night belly dancing and a hookah lounge. Food menus also feature appealing, unusual choices (zaatar-spiced seared lamb loin carpaccio with chickpea pure; stuffed boureka puff pastries; mussels in creamy saffron sauce) along with familiar hummus, kabobs, more. Lunchtime sandwich standout: merguez (intensely spiced lamb sausage) with tzatziki, hummus, salad, and fiery harissa sauce, on fresh pita. $$-$$$ Sabor Latin Restaurant & Cafe1880 79th St. Cswy., 305-741-2020This family-run restaurant serves big portions of homey traditional food from several Latin American countries, including Cuba (pan con bistec, ropa vieja), Mexico (nachos, tacos, quesadillas), and Peru (lomo saltado). But the specialty is Colombian classics, from snacks like empanadas to a bandeja paisa combo (grilled steak, chorizo, a gargantuan crispy chicharron strip, fried egg, arepa, plantains, beans, rice). Particularly recommended: daily specials including two meal-in-a-bowl chicken soups, ajiaco, and sancocho. If youve wondered about the much-debated difference, heres where to test the taste. $-$$Sushi Siam1524 NE 79th St. Causeway, 305-864-7638(See Miami / Upper Eastside listing)NORTH BEACHCaf Prima Pasta 414 71st St., 305-867-0106Who says old dogs cant learn new tricks? Opened in 1993 (with 28 seats), the Cea familys now-sprawling trattoria has added inventive chef Carlos Belon and modern menu items, including fiocchi rapera (pear/cheese-filled pasta purses with truffled prosciutto cream sauce), an unlikely (soy sauce and parmesan cheese?) but luscious Italian/ Japanese fusion tuna carpaccio, and fresh-fruit sorbets. But traditionalists neednt worry. All the old favorites, from the cafs famed beef carpaccio to eggplant parm and pastas sauced with Argentine-Italian indulgence, are still here and still satisfying. $$$-$$$$ Lous Beer Garden7337 Harding Ave., 305-704-7879Beer garden conjures up an image of Bavarian bratwurst, lederhosen, and oompah bands -none of which youll find here. Its actually a hip hideaway in the New Hotels pool-patio area, a locals hangout with interesting eclectic fare and a perennial party atmosphere. Especially recommended: delicately pan-fried mini-crab cakes served with several housemade sauces; hefty bleu cheese burgers with Belgian-style double-cooked fries; blackened angry shrimp with sweet/sour sauce; fried fresh sardines. And of course much beer, a changing list of craft brews. $$-$$$Tamarind Thai 946 Normandy Dr., 305-861-6222When an eaterys executive chef is best-selling Thai cookbook author Vatcharin Bhumichitr, youd expect major media hype, fancy South Beach prices, and a fancy SoBe address. Instead Bhumichitr joined forces with Day Longsomboon (an old Thai school pal whod moved to Miami) at this unpretentious, authentic (no sushi) neighborhood place. Some standout dishes here are featured in the chefs latest tome, but with Tamarinds very affordable prices, you might as well let the mans impeccably trained kitchen staff do the work for you. $$-$$$MIAMI SHORESCte Gourmet9999 NE 2nd Ave., #112, 305-754-9012If only every Miami neighborhood could have a neighborhood restaurant like this low-priced little French jewel. The menu is mostly simple stuff: breakfast croissants, crpe, soups, sandwiches, salads, sweets, and a few more substantial specials like a Tunisianstyle brik (buttery phyllo pastry stuffed with tuna, onions, potatoes, and tomatoes) with a mesclun side salad. But everything is homemade, including all breads, and prepared with impeccable ingredients, classic French technique, and meticulous attention to detail, down to the stylish plaid ribbons that hold together the cafs baguette sandwiches. $-$$ Miami Shores Country Club10000 Biscayne Blvd., 305-795-2363Formerly members-only, the restaurant/lounge facilities of this classy 1939 club are now open to the public always, lunch and dinner. Not surprisingly, ambiance is retro and relaxed, with golf course views from both bar and indoor/outdoor dining room. The surprise is the food some classic (steaks, club sandwiches) but other dishes quite contemporary: an Asian ahi tuna tower; a lavish candied-walnut, poached-pear, grilled chicken salad; and fresh pasta specials. Prices are phenomenal, with dinner entres $9 to $17; drinks average $3 to $4. $$ PizzaFiore9540 NE 2nd Ave., 305-754-1924Owned by Arcoub Abderrahim, who opened South Beachs original PizzaFiore way back in 1996, this caf serves the kind of nostalgic, medium-thin crusted, oozing-with-gooey-cheese pizzas reminiscent of our childhood pies in northern NJ Sopranos territory, except now there are options for todays toppings -sundried tomatoes, buffalo mozzarella, etc. But theres also a full menu of Italian-American classics, including antipasto salads, subs, and particularly popular, pastas. Garlic rolls are a must, but we didnt have to tell you that. $-$$NORTH MIAMIAlaska Coffee Roasting Co.13130 Biscayne Blvd., 786-332-4254When people speak of the West Coast as the USAs quality coffeehouse pioneer territory, theyre thinking Seattle -and then south through coastal California. North to Alaska? Not so much. But owner Michael Gesser did indeed open this hip places parent in Fairbanks back in 1993, after years of traveling through every coffeegrowing country in the world. Brews like signature smooth yet exotic Ethiopian Yirgacheffe dont even need cream or sugar, much less frappe frou-frou. All beans are house-roasted. Theres solid food, too: brick-oven pizzas, salads, sandwiches, and pastries. $-$$ Bagel Bar East1990 NE 123rd St., 305-895-7022Crusty outside (even without toasting) and substantially chewy inside, the bagels here are the sort homesick ex-New Yorkers always moan are impossible to find in Miami. For those who pre fer puffed-up, pillowy bagels? Forget it. Have a nice onion pocket. Theres also a full menu of authentic Jewish deli specialties, including especially delicious, custom-cut -not pre-sliced -nova or lox. Super size sandwiches easily serve two, and theyll even improvise a real NJ Sloppy Joe (two meats, Swiss, coleslaw, and Russian dressing on rye) if you ask nice. $$Bagels & Co.11064 Biscayne Blvd., 305-892-2435While this place is often referred to as Guns & Bagels, one cant actually buy a gun here. The nickname refers to its location next to a firearms shop. But theres a lot of other stuff aside from bagels here, including a full range of sandwiches and wraps. Breakfast time is busy time, with banana-walnut pancakes especially popular. But whats most important is that this is one of the areas few sources of the real, New York-style water bagel: crunchy outside, challengingly chewy inside. $Bulldog Barbecue/Bulldog Burger15400 Biscayne Blvd., 305-940-9655These adjacent restaurants are really one place with two dining areas, since they connect and diners can order from either menu. They also share a BBQ/burger master: Top Chef contender Howie Kleinberg, whose indoor electric smoker produces mild-tasting cue ranging from the expected pulled pork, ribs, brisket, and chicken to more unusual items like hot-smoked salmon. As for burgers, many feature unique ingredients such as mayo flavored like redeye gravy, with strong coffee, or the bun of the infamous Luther: a sweet-glazed mock (holeless) Krispy Kreme donut. Costs are comparatively high, but such is the price of fame. $$-$$$Cane Sucre899 NE 125th St.,305-891-0123From the Vega brothers (who pioneered the Design and MiMo districts with, respectively, the original Cane A Sucre and UVA 69), this charming artisanal sandwich bar is the perfect breakfast/ lunch stop before or after ingesting visual arts at nearby MOMA. Actually, creations like El Fig (fig confit, gorgonzola cheese, walnuts, and honey on an authentically French crisp-crusted freshbaked baguette) are art in their own right. Inventive, substantial salads, sides, daily soups, and homemade sweets (including mouthwateringly buttery croissants) complete the menu. $-$$ Captain Jims Seafood12950 W. Dixie Hwy., 305-892-2812This market/restaurant was garnering critical acclaim even when eat-in dining was confined to a few Formica tables in front of the fish counter, owing to the freshness of its seafood, much of it from Capt. Jim Hansons own fishing boats, which supply many top restaurants. Now theres a casual but pleasantly nautical side dining room with booths. Whether its garlicky scampi, smoked-fish dip, grilled yellowtail or hog or mutton snapper, perfectly tenderized cracked conch or conch fritters, everything is deftly prepared and bargain-priced. $$ Caminito Way1960 NE 123rd St., 305-893-8322Open since 1999, this bakery-caf is particularly known for its European-influenced homemade Argentine pastries. So come early to pick from the widest variety of savory empanadas (plumply stuffed and admirably delicate -no leaden crusts here) or sweet facturas (Argentinas most popular breakfast items). They sell out fast. What some might not know is that despite its small size, Caminitos also crafts tasty big food: elaborate salads; hefty baguette sandwiches, like choripan sausage with chimichurri; pastas; major meat or poultry entres. For lighter lunches, try tartas (quiches), also perfect party food. $-$$Casa Mia Trattoria 1950 NE 123rd St., 305-899-2770Tucked away, off to the side on the approach to the Broad Causeway and the beaches, this charming indoor/outdoor trattoria seems to attract mostly neighborhood regulars. But even newcomers feel like regulars after a few minutes, thanks to the staffs Italian ebullience. Menu offerings are mostly classic comfort foods with some contemporary items as well. Housemade pastas are good enough that low-carb dieters should take a break, especially for the tender gnocchi with pesto or better yet, delicate fagottini beggars purses stuffed with pears and cheese. $$Chen-huyae15400 Biscayne Blvd., 305-956-2808Diners can get some Tex-Mex dishes here, if they must. But the specialty is Mayan-rooted Yucatan cuisine. So why blow bucks on burritos when one can sample Caribbean Mexicos most typical dish: cochinita pibil? Chens authentically succulent version of the pickle-onion-topped marinated pork dish is earthily aromatic from achiote, tangy from bitter oranges, and meltingly tender from slow cooking in a banana leaf wrap. To accompany, try a lime/soy/chili-spiced michelada, also authentically Mexican, and possibly the best thing that ever happened to dark beer. $$-$$$Evios Pizza & Grill12600 Biscayne Blvd., 305-899-7699Family-owned and operated, this indoor/outdoor pizzeria is also family-friendly, right down to the size of its NY-style pies (sold whole or by the slice), which range from large to roughly the diameter of a ferris wheel. And toppings, ranging from meat-lovers to veggie-loaded, are applied with awe-inspiring abundance. Since tastes do vary, the menu also includes a cornucopia of other crowd-pleasers: burgers (including turkey with a unique mustard-spiked cranberry sauce), entre-size salads, burritos or quesadillas, wings, hot or cold subs and succulent self-basted lamb/beef gyros with tzatziki. $ *Must present all coupons. Not valid with other offers. Tax not included. ** ORDER ONLINE www.sumosushibar.com **(Delivery charge Call for delivery area) TEL:305-754-8002 www.schnitzelhausmiami.com1085 N.E. 79th Street / Causeway, Miami, FL 33138ORIGINAL BAVARIANBIER GARTENOPENDAILYFROM5:00PMTO11:00PMFRIDAY& SATURDAYTOMIDNIGHT

PAGE 87

Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT S Fish Fish13488 Biscayne Blvd., 786-732-3124Heres what makes this elegantly warm restolounge and seafood market not just an irresistible neighborhood draw but a worththe-drive dining destination: Both local and cold-water fish and shellfish, including stone crab and lobster from owners Melvyn Franks and Rebecca Nachlass own Florida Keys plant, that are always fresh, never frozen (except some shrimp). For home cooks, the market offers all delivered-daily catches on the menu. But dont miss chef Oscar Quezadas simple and perfect preparations, including lightly battered, crispy tempura shrimp; sophisticated fish and chips (featuring Atlantic cod, not cheapo fish); bracing ceviches; and, for carnivores, shepherds pie topped with ethereal whipped potatoes. $$-$$$$Flip Burger Bar1699 NE 123rd St., 305-741-3547 Casual-chic burger bars, everywhere in South Beach, are still rare farther north. One reason this easy-to-miss venue is a must-notmiss for North Miami locals: The hefty half-pounders on fresh brioche buns include a scrumptious patty with Gruyere, mushrooms, and onion marmalade. The Fireman is a jalapeo/chipotle scorcher. There are even turkey and veggie variations. Other draws are hand-cut fries, beer-battered onion rings, a top-drawer beer list, budget-priced combo specials, conversation-friendly acoustics, and a South Beach rarity: free parking. $-$$Giraffas1821 NE 123rd St., 786-866-9007Festooned with eye-poppingly colored panels and giraffes -subtler but everywhere -this first North American branch of a wildly popular, 30-year-old Brazilian fast/casual chain is the flagship of a planned 4000 U.S. Giraffas. Given that the steaks, especially the tender, flavorful picanha, rival those at the most upscale rodizio joints -and beat the sword-wielding grandstanders for custom cooking (because staff asks your preference) -wed bet on giraffe domination. Overstuffed grilled sandwiches, salads, even tasty veggie options are all here, too. The cheese bread is a must. $$Happy Sushi & Thai2224 NE 123rd St., 305-895-0165Grab a booth at this cozy eatery, which serves all the expected Thai and sushi bar standards, including weekday lunch specials. But there are also delightful surprises, like grilled kawahagi (triggerfish) with seasoned Japanese mayonnaise. This intensely savory/sweet Japanese home cooking treat satisfies the same yen as beef jerky, except without pulling out your teeth. Accompanied by a bowl of rice, its a superb lunch. For raw-fish fans, spicy, creamy salmon tartare (accompanied by hiyashi wakame seaweed) is a winner. $$-$$$ Here Comes the Sun2188 NE 123rd St., 305-893-5711At this friendly natural foods establishment, one of Miamis first, theres a full stock of vitamins and nutritional supplements. But the places hearty soups, large variety of entres (including fresh fish and chicken as well as vegetarian selections), lighter bites like miso burgers with secret sun sauce (which would probably make old sneakers taste good), and daily specials are a tastier way to get healthy. An under-ten-buck early-bird dinner is popular with the former long-hair, now blue-hair, crowd. Frozen yogurt, fresh juices, and smoothies complete the menu. $-$$Il Piccolo Caf2112 NE 123rd St., 305-893-6538Talk about a neighborhood institution. The owners of this longtime Italian eatery remember frequent visits from Miami native Michelle Bernstein and her parents -when the celeb chef was a kid. The piccolo space has since expanded, but the place is still child-friendly, and portions are still prodigious. Most dishes evoke nostalgia, including our favorite white wine/lemon saucedrenched veal piccata with capers and artichokes. There are surprises not found at old school red-sauce joints, too, like lunchtimes surprisingly tasty Cuban sandwich. $$Little Havana 12727 Biscayne Blvd., 305-899-9069In addition to white-tablecoth ambiance, this place features live Latin entertainment and dancing, making it a good choice when diners want a night out, not just a meal. Its also a good choice for diners who dont speak Spanish, but dont worry about authenticity. Classic Cuban home-style dishes like mojo-marinated lechon asado, topped with onions, and juicy ropa vieja are translated on the menu, not the plate, and fancier creations like pork filet in tangy tamarind sauce seem universal crowd-pleasers. $$$Kings Chef476 NE 125th St., 305-895-7878While authentic Chinese fine dining fare is best eaten fresh from the wok, Chinese take-out is almost a separate genre with its own standards -prime being how its tantalizing scent fills the inside of your car. Even basic bargain-priced Szechuan beef combination platters from this humble establishment do that so well, youll find yourself taking the long way home. There are surprises one wouldnt expect, too, including a wide variety of tasty tofu dishes -spicy ma po, General Tso-style, honey garlic, many more -and other savory vegetarian treats. $-$$ Mama Jennies11720 NE 2nd Ave., 305-757-3627For more than 35 years this beloved red-sauce joint has been drawing students and other starvation-budget diners with pro digious portions of lasagna, spaghetti and meatballs (the latter savory yet light-textured), veal marsala topped with a mountain of mushrooms, and other Italian-American belly-busters. All pasta or meat entres come with oil-drenched garlic rolls and either soup (hearty minestrone) or a salad (mixed greens, tomatoes, cukes, brined olives, and pickled peppers) thats a dinner in itself. Rustic roadhouse ambiance, notably the red leatherette booths, add to Mamas charm. $-$$Pastry Is Art12591 Biscayne Blvd., 305-640-5045Given owner Jenny Rissones background as the Eden Rocs executive pastry chef, its not surprising that her cakes and other sweet treats (like creamy one-bite truffle lollipops) look as flawlessly sophisticated as they taste -perfect adult party fare. What the bakerys name doesnt reveal is that its also a breakfast and lunch caf, with unusual baking-oriented fare: a signature sandwich of chicken, brie, and caramelized peaches and pecans on housemade bread; quiches; pot pies; even a baked-to-order Grand Marnier souffl. The pecan sticky buns are irresistible. $$ Petit Rouge12409 Biscayne Blvd., 305-892-7676From the mid-1990s (with Neals Restaurant and later with Il Migliore), local chef Neal Coopers neighborhood-oriented Italian eateries have been crowd-pleasers. While this cute 32-seat charmer is French, its no exception, avoiding pretense and winning fans with both classic and nouvelle bistro fare: frise salad with lardons, poached egg, and bacon vinaigrette; truite Grenobloise (trout with lemon/caper sauce); consomm with black truffles and foie gras, covered by a buttery puff pastry dome; perfect pommes frites, and equally perfect apple or lemon tarts for dessert. $$$Piccolo Pizza2104 NE 123rd St., 305-893-9550Pizzas at this spin-off from family-owned Il Piccolo impress even NYC visitors, thanks to recipes proprietor Hubert Benmoussa learned from an authentic Neapolitan pizzaolo. Other favorites here include subs on homemade baguettes and, surprising for a pizzeria, delightfully custardy quiche (Benmoussa is part French). But it would be unthinkable to miss the pies, especially our favorite Italia: subtly sweet tomato sauce, fresh tomatoes, mozzarella, onions, plus mixed greens and uncooked prosciutto on top -both pizza and salad. There are also nicely priced catering trays of finger subs, quiche squares, pizza bites, more. $-$$ Rice House of Kabob14480 Biscayne Blvd., 305-944-4899Since 2006, South Beachs original Rice House has been serving up mountainous platters of basmati rice and Greek salad topped with Persian-style marinated/char-grilled meat, poultry, seafood, or veggie kabobs -for very little money. This branch of what is now a growing chain has the same menu (which also features wraps, for lighter eaters) and the same policy of custom-cooking kabobs, so expect fresh, not fast, food. Sides of must-o-keyar and must-o-mooseer (thick yogurt dips with herbed cukes or shallots) are must-haves. $$ Steves Pizza12101 Biscayne Blvd., 305-891-0202At the end of a debauched night of excess, some paper-thin designer pizza with wisps of smoked salmon (or similar fluff) doesnt do the trick. Open till 3:00 or 4:00 a.m., Steves has, since 1974, been serving the kind of comforting, retro pizzas people crave at that hour. As in Brooklyn, tomato sauce is sweet, with strong oregano flavor. Mozzarella is applied with abandon. Toppings are stuff that give strength: pepperoni, sausage, meatballs, onions, and peppers. $Tiny Thai House12953 Biscayne Blvd., 305-895-1646The space is tiny. The menu, which features Thai specialties but includes sushi plus Japanese appetizers and entres, is not. Despite the huge selection of sushi/Thai restaurant standards, though, dont overlook items harder to find in America, like floating noodle soup, a popular street food from Thailands boatbased market stalls; similar in savor to Vietnamese pho, the dish contains beef, bean sprouts, and noodles heaped in umami-rich beef broth. Among the nicely priced sushi selections, the Mylo roll (tuna, salmon, crab, avocado, and cuke, topped with tempura fish and eel sauce) is a tasty pick. Dont miss sticky rice with mango for dessert. $NORTH MIAMI BEACHBlue Marlin Fish House 2500 NE 163rd St., 305-957-8822Located inside Oleta River State Park, this casual outdoor eatery is a rare surprise for nature lovers. The featured item is still the rrfrnfttb t t f bbbn bnfntt b bb bnfnn btnnn bbt bnrfrb NOW OPEN 7 DAYS FROM 11AM PARTY WITH US FRI & SAT till 2AM Lunch, Dinner & Happy Hour Specials DAILY

PAGE 88

88 Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT S house-smoked fish this historic venue began producing in 1938, available in three varieties: salmon, mahi mahi, and the signature blue marlin. But the smokehouse now also turns out ribs and delectable brisket. Other new additions include weekend fish fries. Entry is directly from 163rd Street, not through the main park entrance. No admission fee. $ Chef Rolfs Tunas Seafood Restaurant17850 W. Dixie Hwy., 305-932-0630 Known for decades as simply Tunas, this indoor/outdoor eatery, combining a casual vibe with some surprisingly sophisticated food, now has a name recognizing the culinary refinements introduced by Rolf Fellhauer, for 28 years executive chef at Continental fine-dining spot La Paloma. Additions to the predominantly seafood menu include chateaubriand or rack of lamb for two, both carved, with old-school spectacle, tableside. Owner Michael Choido has also renovated the interior dining room, and added the Yellowfin Lounge, which features an extensive selection of artisan beers. $$-$$$ Cholos Ceviche & Grill1127 NE 163rd St., 305-947-3338Dont be misled by the mini-mall location, or the relatively minimal prices (especially during lunch, when specials are under $6). Inside, the dcor is charming, and the Peruvian plates elegant in both preparation and presentation. Tops among ceviches/tiraditos is the signature Cholos, marinated octopus and fish in a refined rocoto chili sauce with overtones both fiery and fruity. And dont miss the molded causas, whipped potato rings stuffed with avocado-garnished crab salad -altogether lighter and lovelier than the tasty but oily mashed spud constructions more oft encountered in town. $-$$Christines Roti Shop16721 NE 6th Ave., 305-770-0434Wraps are for wimps. At this small shop run by Christine Gouvela, originally from British Guyana, the wrapper is a far more substantial and tasty roti, a Caribbean mega-crepe made from chickpea flour. Most popular filling for the flatbread is probably jerk chicken, bone-in pieces in a spiced stew of potatoes, cabbage, carrots, onions, and more chickpeas. But there are about a dozen other curries from which to choose. Take-out packages of plain roti are also available; they transform myriad leftovers into tasty, portable lunches. $ Duffys Sports Grill Intracoastal Mall3969 NE 163rd St., 305-760-2124Located in a sprawling indoor/outdoor space at the Intracoastal Mall, Duffys, part of a popular chain that identifies as the official sports grill of every major Miami team, features roughly a zillion TVs and an equally mega-size menu of accessibly Americanized, globally inspired dishes designed to please crowds: stuffed potato skins, crab Rangoon, coconut-crusted fish fingers with orange-ginger sauce, jumbo wings of many flavors. Imagine a sports-oriented Cheesecake Factory. What makes this particular Duffys different and better? Location, location, location -fronting the Intracoastal Waterway. Theres even a swimming pool with its own bar. $$-$$$ Empire Szechuan Gourmet of NY3427 NE 163rd St., 305-949-3318In the 1980s, Empire became the Chinese chain that swallowed Manhattan -and transformed public perceptions of Chinese food in the NY metropolitan area. Before: bland faux-Cantonese dishes. After: lighter, more fiery fare from Szechuan and other provinces. This Miami outpost does serve chop suey and other Americanized items, but dont worry. Stick with Szechuan crispy prawns, Empires Special Duck, cold sesame noodles, or similar pleasantly spicy specialties, and youll be a happy camper, espe cially if youre an ex-New Yorker. $$ El Gran Inka3155 NE 163rd St., 305-940-4910Though diners at this upscale Peruvian eatery will find ceviches, a hefty fried-seafood jalea, and Perus other expected traditional specialties, all presented far more elegantly than most in town, the contemporary Peruvian fusion creations are unique. Especially recommended are two dishes adapted from recipes by Perus influential nikkei (Japanese/Creole) chef Rosita Yimura: an exquisite, delicately sauced tiradito de corvina, and for those with no fear of cholesterol, pulpo de oliva (octopus topped with rich olive sauce). $$$-$$$$ Hannas Gourmet Diner13951 Biscayne Blvd., 305-947-2255When Sia and Nicole Hemmati bought the Gourmet Diner from retiring original owner Jean-Pierre Lejeune in the late 1990s, they added Hannas to the name, but changed little else about this retro-looking French/American diner, a north Miami-Dade institu tion since 1983. Customers can get a cheeseburger or garlicky escargots, meatloaf in tomato sauce or boeuf bourguignon in red wine sauce, iceberg lettuce and tomatoes, or a mushroom and squid salad with garlic dressing. For oysters Rockefeller/tunamelt couples from Venus and Mars, it remains the ideal dinner date destination. $$-$$$ Hiro Japanese Restaurant3007 NE 163rd St., 305-948-3687One of Miamis first sushi restaurants, Hiro retains an amusing retro-glam feel, an extensive menu of both sushi and cooked Japanese food, and late hours that make it a perennially popular after-hours snack stop. The sushi menu has few surprises, but quality is reliable. Most exceptional are the nicely priced yakitori, skewers of succulently soy-glazed and grilled meat, fish, and vegetables; the unusually large variety available of the last makes this place a good choice for vegetarians. $$ Hiros Sushi Express17048 W. Dixie Hwy., 305-949-0776Tiny, true, but theres more than just sushi at this mostly take-out spin-off of the pioneering Hiro. Makis are the mainstay (standard stuff like California rolls, more complex creations like multi-veg futo maki, and a few unexpected treats like a spicy Crunch & Caliente maki), available la carte or in value-priced individual and party combo platters. But there are also bento boxes featuring tempura, yakitori skewers, teriyaki, stir-fried veggies, and udon noodles. Another branch is now open in Miamis Upper Eastside. $Heelsha1550 NE 164th St., 305-919-8393If unusual Bangladeshi dishes like fiery pumpkin patey (cooked with onion, green pepper, and pickled mango) or Heelsha curry (succulently spiced hilsa, Bangladeshs sweet-fleshed national fish) seem familiar, its because chef/owner Bithi Begum and her husband Tipu Raman once served such fare at the critically acclaimed Renaisa. Their menus mix-and-match option allows diners to pair their choice of meat, poultry, fish, or vegetable with more than a dozen regional sauces, from familiar Indian styles to exotica like satkara, flavored with a Bangladeshi citrus reminiscent of sour orange. $$-$$$Julios Natural Foods Emporium1602 NE Miami Gardens Dr., 305-947-4744Vegetarians and vegans tired of settling for the one sad steamed vegetable entre tacked onto most menus will be in in pork-free pig heaven. Owner Julio Valderramas healthy global (though mostly Mediterranean, Mexican, and New American) menu of not-so-small plates, salads, sandwiches/wraps, and organic grain-based platters is so immense you could literally eat for months without repeating -or indulging in poultry and fish dishes. Cooking isnt cutting-edge, but unusual spicing keeps things interesting. Especially recommended: a signature veg-and-fetapacked zaatar flatbread; also slightly sinful sweet potato with butter and cinnamon. $-$$ Kebab Indian Restaurant514 NE 167th St., 305-940-6309Since the 1980s this restaurant, located in an unatmospheric mini strip mall but surprisingly romantic inside (especially if you grab one of the exotically draped booths) has been a popular destination for reasonably priced north Indian fare. Kormas are properly soothing and vindaloos are satisfactorily searing, but the kitchen will adjust seasonings upon request. They aim to please. Food arrives unusually fast for an Indian eatery, too. $$Kings County Pizza18228 W. Dixie Hwy., 305-792-9455If your feelings about Brooklyn-style pizza have been formed by Dominos flopsy-crusted, ketchupy, cheesefoody pies, stop here to sample a slice of the real thing. Admittedly, the crusts are not those of the coal-fired classics from Brooklyns legendary Totonnos or Grimaldis, but theyre similarly medium-thin and crisp -though not like a cracker; you can fold them for neat street eating, and they taste like honest bread, not cardboard. A variety of toppings are available even on slices. There are also whole pies with varied toppings. The large is humongous. $-$$ KoneFood387 NE 167th St., 305-705-4485Cones contain ice cream. Kones, however, contain anything and everything edible -at least at this eatery, locally founded (though the original concept of ultimate portable convenience meals, in sealed flatbread cones, came from Italy). In their melting-pot American version, kone fillings range from breakfast items like huevos rancheros to Thai chicken, chicken curry, coconut shrimp, kones kon lechon (slow-roasted pork with mojo), various pizzas, BBQ, chicken Florentine, healthy green salads, more. There are even desserts like a flambed apple Kone la Normande. Authentic Belgian frites, too. $ Laurenzos Market Caf16385 W. Dixie Hwy., 305-945-6381Its just a small area between the wines and the fridge counters no potted palms, and next-to-no service in this cafeteria-style space. But when negotiating this international gourmet markets packed shelves and crowds has depleted your energies, its a handy place to refuel with eggplant parmesan and similar ItalianAmerican classics, housemade from old family recipes. Just a few spoonfuls of Wednesdays hearty pasta fagiole, one of the daily soup specials, could keep a person shopping for hours. And now that pizza master Carlo is manning the wood-fired oven, you can sample the thinnest, crispiest pies outside Napoli. $-$$Lime Fresh Mexican Grill14831 Biscayne Blvd., 305-949-8800 www.limefreshmexicangrill.comLike its downtown and Midtown siblings, this Lime Fresh serves up carefully crafted Tex-Mex food. The concept is fast casual rather than fast food meaning nice enough for a night out. It also means ingredients are always fresh. Seafood tacos are about as exotic as the menu gets, but the mahi mahi for fish tacos comes from a local supplier, and salsas are housemade daily. Niceties include low-carb tortillas and many Mexican beers. $Little Saigon16752 N. Miami Ave., 305-653-3377This is Miamis oldest traditional Vietnamese restaurant, but its still packed most weekend nights. So even the places biggest negative its hole-in-the-wall atmosphere, not encouraging of lingering visits becomes a plus since it ensures fast turnover. Chef/owner Lily Tao is typically in the kitchen, crafting green papaya salad, flavorful beef noodle pho (served with greens, herbs, and condiments that make it not just a soup but a whole ceremony), and many other Vietnamese classics. The menu is humongous. $-$$The Melting Pot15700 Biscayne Blvd., 305-947-2228 For 1950s and 1960s college students, fondue pots were standard dorm accessories. These days, however, branches of this chain are generally the only places to go for this eating experience. Start with a wine-enriched four-cheese fondue; proceed to an entre with meat or seafood, plus choice of cooking potion (herbed wine, bouillon, or oil); finish with fruits and cakes dipped in melted chocolate. Fondue etiquette dictates that diners who drop a skewer in the pot must kiss all other table companions, so go with those you love. $$$Oishi Thai14841 Biscayne Blvd., 305-947-4338 At this stylish Thai/sushi spot, try the menu of specials, many of which clearly reflect the young chefs fanatical devotion to fresh fish, as well as the time he spent in the kitchen of Knob: broiled miso-marinated black cod; rock shrimp tempura with creamy

PAGE 89

Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT S sauce; even Nobu Matsuhisas new style sashimi (slightly sur face-seared by drizzles of hot olive and sesame oil). The specials menu includes some Thai-inspired creations, too, such as veal massaman curry, Chilean sea bass curry, and sizzling filet mignon with basil sauce. $$$-$$$$Panya Thai520 NE 167th St., 305-945-8566Unlike authentic Chinese cuisine, theres no shortage of genu ine Thai food in and around Miami. But Panyas chef/owner, a Bangkok native, offers numerous regional and/or rare dishes not found elsewhere. Plus he doesnt automatically curtail the heat or sweetness levels to please Americans. Among the most intriguing: moo khem phad wan (chewy deep-fried seasoned pork strips with fiery tamarind dip, accompanied by crisp green papaya salad); broad rice noodles stir-fried with eye-opening chili/garlic sauce and fresh Thai basil; and chili-topped Diamond Duck in tangy tamarind sauce. $$-$$$ Paquitos16265 Biscayne Blvd., 305-947-5027From the outside, this strip-mall Mexican eatery couldnt be easier to overlook. Inside, however, its festivity is impossible to resist. Every inch of wall space seems to be covered with South of the Border knickknacks. And if the kitschy dcor alone doesnt cheer you, the quickly arriving basket of fresh (not packaged) taco chips, or the mariachi band, or the knockout margaritas will. Food ranges from Tex-Mex burritos and a party-size fajita platter to authentic Mexican moles and harder-to-find traditional preparations like albndigas spicy, ultra-savory meatballs. $$-$$$Sangs Chinese Restaurant1925 NE 163rd St., 305-947-7076Sangs has three menus. The pink menu is Americanized Chinese food, from chop suey to honey garlic chicken. The white menu permits the chef to show off his authentic Chinese fare: salt and pepper prawns, rich beef/turnip casserole, tender salt-baked chicken, even esoterica like abalone with sea cucumber. The extensive third menu offers dim sum, served until 4:00 p.m. A live tank allows seasonal seafood dishes like lobster with ginger and scallion. Recently installed: a Chinese barbecue case, displaying savory items like crispy pork with crackling attached. $$$Shing Wang Vegetarian, Icee & Tea House 237 NE 167th St., 305-654-4008At this unique, mostly Taiwanese eatery, all seafood, poultry, and meats used to be skillfully crafted and delicious vegetarian imitations. These are still here, plus theres now a wider choice of dishes, some featuring real meat. Try the authentic-tasting Vietnamese banh mi sandwiches (available with a variety of meat and mock-meat fillings). Bubble tea is the must-not-miss drink. The cold, refreshing boba comes in numerous flavors, all supplemented with signature black tapioca balls that, sipped through straws, are a guaranteed giggle. $Siam Square54 NE 167th St., 305-944-9697Open until 1:00 a.m. every day except Sunday (when is closes at midnight), this relatively new addition to North Miami Beachs Chinatown strip has become a popular late-night gathering spot for chefs from other Asian restaurants. And why not? The food is fresh, nicely presented, and reasonably priced. The kitchen staff is willing to customize dishes upon request, and the serving staff is reliably fast. Perhaps most important, karaoke equipment is in place when the mood strikes. $-$$Soprano Caf3933 NE 163rd St., 855-434-9035Sicilian native Rocco Soprano, original proprietor of South Beachs Sopranos, has transformed this Intracoastal Waterway space, formerly the enoteca Racks, into an elegant but familyfriendly restaurant featuring classic Italian dishes plus steakhouse fare, all in prodigious portions. For an ultimate Miamian/ Italian fusion experience, arrive by boat at Sopranos dock, grab a table on the water-view deck, and enjoy a coal-oven pizza -perhaps the famous truffled white pizza, or our personal fave secchi: sopressata salami, zesty tomato sauce, provolone, goat cheese, and fresh fior di latte mozzarella. $$$ Sushi House15911 Biscayne Blvd., 305-947-6002In terms of dcor drama, this sushi spot seems to have taken its cue from Philippe Starck: sheer floor-to-ceiling drapes, for starters. The sushi list, too, is over the top, featuring monster makis like the Cubbie Comfort: spicy tuna, soft-shell crab, shrimp and eel tempura, plus avocado, jalapeos, and cilantro, topped with not one but three sauces: wasabi, teriyaki, and spicy Mayo. Hawaiian King Crab contains unprecedented ingredients like tomatoes, green peppers, and pineapple. Boutique wines, artisan sakes, and cocktails are as exotic as the cuisine. $$$-$$$$Sushi Sake13551 Biscayne Blvd., 305-947-4242Chic Asian-accented dcor, video screens, 99-cent drink deals, and late-night hours make this hip hangout not just a sushi bar but sort of a neighborhood bar, too. That said, the sushi is impressive, mainly because seafood is delivered daily and all except the shrimp is fresh, not frozen (as is customary at most Miami sushi places). Also notable: All sauces are housemade. Cooked makis like a crunch-topped Miami Heat are most popu lar, but its as sashimi that the fishs freshness truly shines. $$-$$$ Tanias Table18685 W. Dixie Hwy., 305-932-9425A location at the tail end of a tiny, tired-looking strip mall makes this weekday lunch-only kosher eatery easy to miss. But the cute bistro, an extension of chef Tania Sigals catering company, is well worth seeking for its unusually varied daily-changing menus -not just familiar Eastern European-derived dishes (chicken matzoh ball soup, blintzes, etc.) but numerous Latin American spe cialties (zesty ropa vieja), Asian-influenced items (Thai chicken/ noodle salad), lightened universal Ladies-Who-Lunch classics (custardy quiches, grilled trout with mustard sauce), and home made baked goods. $$ Vegetarian Restaurant by Hakin73 NE 167th St., 305-405-6346Too often purist vegetarian food is unskillfully crafted bland stuff, spiced with little but sanctimonious intent. Not at this modestlooking vegan (dairy-free vegetarian) restaurant and smoothie bar. Dishes from breakfasts blueberry-packed pancakes to Caribbean vegetable stews sparkle with vivid flavors. Especially impressive: mock meat (and fake fish) wheat-gluten items that beat many carnivorous competitors. Skeptical? Rightly. But we taste-tested a Philly cheese steak sandwich on the toughest of critics -an inflexibly burger-crazy six year-old. She cleaned her plate. $$Yakko-San3881 NE 163rd. St. (Intracoastal Mall), 305-947-0064After sushi chefs close up their own restaurants for the night, many come here for a rare taste of Japanese home cooking, served in grazing portions. Try glistening-fresh strips of raw tuna can be had in maguro nuta mixed with scallions and dressed with habit-forming honey-miso mustard sauce. Other favorites include goma ae (wilted spinach, chilled and dressed in sesame sauce), garlic stem and beef (mild young shoots flash-fried with tender steak bits), or perhaps just-caught grouper with hot/ sweet/tangy chili sauce. Open till around 3:00 a.m. $$BAY HARBOR ISLANDSAsia Bay Bistro1007 Kane Concourse, 305-861-2222As in Japans most refined restaurants, artful presentation is stunning at this Japanese/Thai gem. And though the voluminous menu sports all the familiar favorites from both nations, the Japanese-inspired small plates will please diners seeking something different. Try jalapeo-sauced hamachi sashimi; toro with enoki mushrooms, bracing ooba (shiso), tobiko caviar, and a sauce almost like beurre blanc; rock shrimp/shitake tempura with a delicate salad; elegant salmon tartare with a mix-in quail egg. And spicy, mayo-dressed tuna rock makis are universal crowd-pleasers. $$$ Bay Harbor Bistro1023 Kane Concourse, 305-866-0404Though small, this ambitious European/American fusion bistro covers all the bases, from smoked salmon eggs Florentine at breakfast and elaborate lunch salads to steak frites at dinner, plus tapas. As well as familiar fare, youll find atypical creations: caramelized onion and goat cheese-garnished leg of lamb sandwiches; a layered crab/ avocado tortino; pistachio-crusted salmon. A welcome surprise: The bistro is also a bakery, so dont overlook the mouthwateringly buttery croissants, plumply stuffed empanadas, or elegant berry tarts and other homemade French pastries. $$-$$$Bettos Ristorante Italiano1009 Kane Concourse, 305-861-8166After roughly 25 years as Caffe Da Vinci, this romantic remodeled, renamed space is now managed by Betto Di Carlo, also a 25-year Italian cuisine veteran (as former owner/effusively charming host of Surfsides neighborhood favorite Caf Ragazzi). Best make reservations. Though off the tourist track, the place draws hungry hordes for homemade pastas like pappardelle ai porcini (toothsome wide noodles with fresh mushrooms). Veal piccata, lightly floured and sau ted medaillons with a caper-studded lemon white wine sauce, and thicker mozzarella-stuffed chops are also popular. $$$ Le Pine1052 Kane Concourse, 305-861-1059This upscale Lebanese restaurant serves dishes with the sort of understated sophistication that makes clear why Beirut was called the Paris of the East. Youll find familiar Middle Eastern favorites, but many have refinements that lift them above aver age: pita thats housemade, charmingly fluffy when warm from the oven; falafel incorporating flavorful fava beans with the usual ground chickpeas. Especially appealing are more uncommon items like crisp-fried cauliflower with tahini, fateh (a chickpea casserole iced with thick yogurt), and buttery cheese/herb-filled sambusak pastries. Finish exotically with a hookah. $$-$$$ Open Kitchen1071 95th St., 305-865-0090If we were on Death Row, choosing a last meal, this very chefcentered lunchroom/markets PBLT (a BLT sandwich with meltin-your-mouth pork belly substituting for regular bacon) would be a strong contender. Co-owners Sandra Stefani (ex-Casa Toscana chef/owner) and Ines Chattas (ex-Icebox Caf GM) have combined their backgrounds to create a global gourmet oasis with a menu ranging from light quiches and imaginative salads to hefty balsamic/tomato-glazed shortribs or daily pasta specials (like wild boar-stuffed ravioli). Also featured: artisan grocery products, and Stefanis famous interactive cooking class/wine dinners. $$-$$$ The Palm9650 E. Bay Harbor Dr., 305-868-7256It was 1930s journalists, legend has it, who transformed NYCs original Palm from Italian restaurant to bastion of beef. Owners would run out to the butcher for huge steaks to satisfy the hardboiled scribes. So our perennial pick here is nostalgic: steak la stone -juicy, butter-doused slices on toast, topped with sauted onions and pimentos. This classic (whose carb components make it satisfying without la carte sides, and hence a relative bargain) isnt on the menu anymore, but cooks will prepare it on request. $$$$$AVENTURA / HALLANDALEAnthonys Coal Fired Pizza17901 Biscayne Blvd., 305-830-2625When people rave about New York pizzas superiority, they dont just mean thin crusts. They mean the kind of airy, abundantly burn-bubbled, uniquely flavorful crusts that can only be consistently produced by a traditional coal (not wood) oven -like those at Anthonys, which began with one Fort Lauderdale pizzeria in

PAGE 90

90 Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT S2002 and now has roughly 30 locations. Quality toppings, though limited, hit all the major food groups, from prosciutto to kalamata olives. There are salads, too, but the sausage and garlicsauted broccoli rabe pie is a tastier green vegetable. $$Bagel Cove Restaurant & Deli19003 Biscayne Blvd. 305-935-4029One word: flagels. And no, thats not a typo. Rather these crusty, flattened specimens (poppy seed or sesame seed) are the ultimate bagel/soft pretzel hybrid -and a specialty at this bustling Jewish bakery/deli, which, since 1988, opens at 6:30 a.m. -typically selling out of flagels in a couple of hours. Since youre up early anyway, sample elaborately garnished breakfast specials, including unusually flavorful homemade corned beef hash and eggs. For the rest of the day, multitudes of mavens devour every other delectable deli specialty known to humankind. $$BagelWorks18729 Biscayne Blvd., 305-937-7727Hard as it is for old-time NYC expats to believe, theres evidently a younger generation that doesnt equate the Jewish deli experience with loudmouthed servers and the smell of 75 years of fermenting pickle juice in the flooring. This cleanly contemporary place attracts this younger generation with the full range of classics, including many varieties of hand-sliced smoked fish, but also healthy options, most notably a wide array of substantial salads with grilled protein add-ons. Bagels, while machine-made rather than hand-rolled, are freshly baked all day. $$ Bourbon Steak 19999 W. Country Club Dr., 786-279-0658 (Fairmont Hotel, Turnberry Resort)At Bourbon Steak, a venture in the exploding restaurant empire of chef Michael Mina, a multiple James Beard award winner, steakhouse fare is just where the fare starts. There are also Minas inge nious signature dishes, like an elegant deconstructed lobster/baby vegetable pot pie, a raw bar, and enough delectable vegetable/seafood starters and sides for noncarnivores to assemble a happy meal. But dont neglect the steak flavorful dry-aged Angus, 100-percent Wagyu American Kobe, swoonworthy grade A5 Japanese Kobe, and butter-poached prime rib, all cooked to perfection. $$$$$BurgerFi18139 Biscayne Blvd., 305-466-0350Its not surprising that this Florida-based better burger franchise is one of Americas fastest-growing. With dcor thats relaxingly retro yet futuristically earth-friendly (think recycled Coke bottle chairs), beverages ranging from milkshakes to craft beers, and sourced hormone/antibiotic-free, grass-fed Angus burgers on branded buns, for prices rivaling those for fast-food junkburgers, whats not to love? There are also vegetarian quinoa burgers or Kobe dogs, plus accessories including hand-cut fries, killer crisp-battered onion rings, freshly made, all-natural frozen custard, and toppings galore. $ Cadillac RanchVillage at Gulfstream Park 921 Silks Run Rd. #1615, 954-456-1031Its hard to decide if the most fun interpretation of beef here is the weekend prime rib dinner special (with two sides and a meat hunk hefty enough for sandwiches the next day) or the mechanical bull. Party like its 1980 at this all-American restolounge/sports bar, which includes two outdoor patios with fire pits and, sometimes, live rootsy music. If you miss out on the roast beef (it goes fast), there are burgers, steaks, meal-size salads, and classic bar bites. $$-$$$ Fresko19048 NE 29th Ave., 786-272-3737Forget thick, dough-wrapped potato knishes and blintzes slathered with sour cream. As its name suggests, this kosher dairy eatery eschews the starch/sugar-laden traditional tfavorites for salads, smoothies, and similar healthy fare as casual, clean, and contempo rary as the restaurants dcor. Asian-influenced items, like wakametopped tuna tartare with pineapple chutney, are particularly appealing, while those craving classic combinations like smoked salmon and cream cheese can enjoy them on a light-crusted designer pizza. To drink, smoothies are supplemented by refreshing herbal infusions like green lemonade (with mint and basil). $$Fuji Hana2775 NE 187th St., Suite #1, 305-932-8080A people-pleasing menu of typical Thai and Japanese dishes, plus some appealing contemporary creations (like the Spicy Crunchy Tuna Roll, an inside-out tuna/avocado/tempura maki, topped with more tuna and served with a luscious creamy cilantro sauce) has made this eatery a longtime favorite. But vegetarians -for whom seafood-based condiments can make Asian foods a minefield -might want to add the place to their worth a special drive list, thanks to chefs winning ways with tofu and all-around accommodation to veg-only diets. $$-$$$Kampai3575 NE 207th St., 305-931-6410At this longtime neighborhood favorite Japanese/Thai restaurant, many come just for the slightly pricy but very generous sushi specialties. Most makis are cooked, but for raw-fish fans the tempura-flaketopped crunchy tuna/avocado roll with spicy mayo, and tuna both inside and out, is a people-pleaser. Dont neglect Thai specialties, though, especially red and green curries customizable as to heat (mild, medium, hot, and authentic Thai hot). And for a bargain light lunch, try tonjiru, miso soup jazzed up with veggies and pork. $$-$$$La Montanara18855 NE 29th Ave., 305-974-0167A lushly vine-covered walkway leading to the door and back patio of this secluded but expansive restaurant serves notice that diners are in for an exclusive Italian experience. Ilario Giunchi, co-founder of Caracass famed original La Montanara, has brought much of the menu to this second location, including housemade pastas and creative carpaccios like a delicate crudo version of vitello tonnato. Whatever else you order, dont miss the signature mascarpone/prosciutto focaccias from the beautifully tiled stone pizza oven. Budgeting diners: Explore weekday lunch specials, which include sides. $$-$$$$ Mos Bagels & Deli2780 NE 187th St., 305-936-8555While the term old school is used a lot to describe this spacious (160-seat) establishment, it actually opened in 1995. It just so evokes the classic NY delis we left behind that it seems to have been here forever. Example: Lox and nova arent pallid, prepackaged fish, but custom-sliced from whole slabs. And bagels are hand-rolled, chewy champions, not those machine-made puffy poseurs. As complimentary pastry bites suggest, and the massive size of the succulent, sufficiently fatty pastrami sandwiches confirm, generous Jewish Mo(m) spirit shines here. $$Mr. Chefs Fine Chinese Cuisine & Bar18800 NE 29th Ave. #10, 786-787-9030Considering our countys dearth of authentic Chinese food, this stylish eatery is heaven-sent for Aventura residents. Owners Jin Xiang Chen and Shu Ming (a.k.a. Mr. Chef) come from Chinas southern seacoast province of Guangdong (Canton). But youll find no gloppily sauced, Americanized-Cantonese chop sueys here. Cooking is properly light-handed, and seafood specialties shine (try the spicy/crispy salt and pepper shrimp). For adventurers, theres a cold jellyfish starter. Even timid taste buds cant resist tender fried shrimp balls described this way: With crispy adorable fringy outfit. $$-$$$Pilar20475 Biscayne Blvd. 305-937-2777Named after Ernest Hemingways fishing boat, this eatery, helmed for its first decade by chef Scott Fredel, is now under new ownership. The menu is a mix of classic dishes (grilled skirt steak with chimichurri and fries; chicken parm), todays trendy favorites (sliders, tuna tartare), and pastas including linguine with shrimp, tomato, basil, and garlic in Alfredo sauce. But executive chef Frank Ferreiros focus remains fresh seafood, like pan-seared colossal scallops with sauted spinach, fried onions, roasted corn, and champagne butter sauce. $$$Sicilian Oven20475 Biscayne Blvd., 305-682-1890Dont think that square-shaped doughy pizza is the specialty here. Oven is really the operative word, referring to the open kitchens impressive-looking, open-flame wood-burner, and for our money the places thin-crusted pies are the way to go. Toppings, applied amply, range from traditional Italian-American (like made-in-Wisconsin Grande mozzarella) to popular (fresh mozz, even balsamic glaze); crust options include whole grain and gluten-free. Other must-haves: arancini (deep-fried rice balls stuffed with mozz and ground beef) and cervellata sausage with broccoli rabe. $$ Soho Asian Bar & Grill19004 NE 29th St., 305-466-5656 Do bring your pocket flashlight to this kosher restaurant. Considering the menus expansiveness, youll be doing lots of reading despite dim, lounge-lizard lighting. The stars here are small plates and over-the-top Asian fusion sushi rolls, like the Korean: short ribs atop a kimchee-garnished maki of pured avocado, cuke, scallion, and sweet potato. But the menu of tapas and entres ranges from Japanese-inspired items to pad Thai, Middle Eastern kabobs, Chinese-American pepper steak, even all-American grilled steaks. Highlights: signature fried cauliflower with chili sauce, and an appealing house nut bread with three spreads. $$-$$$ Sushi Siam19575 Biscayne Blvd. 305-932-8955(See Miami / Upper Eastside listing)SUNNY ISLES BEACHAlba17315 Collins Ave., 786-923-9305From bad-boy celeb chef Ralph Pagano, Sole resorts seaside Italian/ Italian-American eatery has an irreverent retro Rat Pack vibe and a menu featuring naked ravioli from the Gnudi Bar, fresh seafood, homemade pastas, classic and contemporary pizzas, and old school red sauce joint entres, some upscaled. (When lobster Franaise is available, why settle for chicken?) Almond-sage butter-sauced butternut squash gnudi is a best bet. And meals end with another best bet: the Vinny D Split, a game enabling tables to win their meals for free. $$$$ Chef Ho16850 Collins Ave., 305-974-0338Deep-pocketed diners who ate at the Setai when Jonathan Wright was executive chef already know chef Hos work. His dazzling dim sum were the menus highlight. Now theyre affordable for all. Dumplings (chive and shrimp, green tea duck, truffle-spiked scallop, more) have skins delicate enough to see through; open shrimp dumplings with dried scallops are almost flower-like in appearance; steamed cheung fan (rice noodle crpes) rolled around Chinese crullers are simply sinful, as are flaky-crusted egg custard tarts. And the regular menu measures up to the small plates. $$-$$$Copper Chimney18090 Collins Ave., 305-974-0075At this family-owned (and kid-friendly), white-tablecloth Indian restaurant, prices are more upscale than average, but so is the foods elegant presentation -plus features like a full bar, live Bollywood/ belly dancing on weekends, and, among familiar North Indian fare, dishes blending contemporary touches with traditional tastes. Especially enjoyable: starters inspired by street snacks, like bikaneri chaat (fried gram flour crisps, chickpeas, and yogurt) served with two chutneys; anything featuring paneer cheese, from classic spinach/ cheese palak paneer to creative khazazs-e-lazzat (sundried tomatostuffed paneer/potato dumplings in smooth cream sauce). $$$Epicure Gourmet Market & Caf17190 Collins Ave., 305-947-4581Who even knew that the late Rascal House had an ocean view? Diners may have to eat standing up to glimpse water over the dunes from the panoramic caf windows of the gourmet market that replaced the Rascal, but you know youre on a tropical beach, not Brighton Beach. The big, bright cafs menu, more global diner than Jewish deli, includes daily specials ranging from spa-grilled chicken to homemade Italian sausage and peppers. But its worth seeking out items that made South Beachs original Epicure famous: sandwiches featuring housemade rare roast beef; shrimp or chunky smoked whitefish salads; fresh baked goods. $$$The H Restaurant17608 Collins Ave., 305-931-9106This friendly, family-owned bistro is the sort of homeaway-fromhome found every few blocks in France -here Gerard and Karin Herrison, plus chef son Julien, formerly had a restaurant -but theyre rarely found in South Florida. Burgers, et al., are available, but with garlicky escargots, a savory/sweet-dressed salad of duck confit atop frise, pan-seared foie gras with port/raspberry sauce, fish with an impeccable lemon beurre blanc, and a satisfying steak/frites (with peppery cognac cream sauce). Wed leave the American stuff to the kids. $$$-$$$$Il Mulino New York17875 Collins Ave., 305-466-9191If too much is not enough for you, this majorly upscale ItalianAmerican place, an offshoot of the famed NYC original, is your restaurant. For starters, diners receive enough freebie food -fried zucchini coins, salami, bruschetta with varying toppings, a wedge of quality parmigiano, garlic bread -that ordering off the menu seems superfluous. But mushroom raviolis in truffle cream sauce are irresistible, and perfectly tenderized veal parmesan, the size of a large pizza, makes a great take-out dinnerfor the next week. $$$$-$$$$$Mozart Caf18110 Collins Ave., 305-974-0103 This eatery (which serves breakfast as well as lunch and dinner) is a kosher dairy restaurant, but not the familiar Old World type that used to proliferate all over New Yorks Lower Eastside Jewish community. Dcor isnt deli but modern-artsy, and the food is not blintzes, noodle kugel, etc., but a wide range of non-meat items from pizzas to sushi. Our favorite dishes, though, are Middle Easterninfluenced, specifically Yemenite malawach (paratha-type flatbread sandwiches, savory or sweet), and shaksuka (nicknamed eggs in purgatory; the spicy eggplant version will explain all). $$-$$$ Kitchen 30516701 Collins Ave., 305-749-2110Offering eclectic American fare, this resort restaurant room, despite its contemporary open kitchen, has the retro-glam look of a reno vated discotheque -which is what it was. In fact, its still as much lounge as eatery, so its best to arrive early if you want a relatively DJ-free eating experience. A seductive mango-papaya BBQ sauce makes ribs a tasty choice any night, but most local diners in the know come on nights when the restaurant features irresistibly priced seasonal seafood specials (all-you-can-eat stone crabs one night, lobster on another). A spacious dining counter overlooking the cooks makes the Kitchen a comfortable spot for singles. $$$Piazzetta17875 Collins Ave., 305-918-6816You cant help feeling optimistic about a tourist towns food scene when its resort restaurants, which generally walk the middle of the road, get creative. And it doesnt get much more creative than this stylish restaurant and Italian market, which bills itself as a trip to an Italian-inspired little market square, but which, along with artisanal salumi plus pizzas and pastas, serves sushi. Particularly tasty: the native Neapolitan pizza chefs truffled taleggio and mushroom pies; meltingly tender braised short ribs; an impeccable market-driven meat and cheese platter. $$$Preservation18250 Collins Ave., 305-974-0273 Restaurant trendsetters, anyone with a back-to-the-land ethic, and lovers of food history and culture will especially love this rustic-looking places focus: proteins and produce, house-preserved via curing, pickling, and smoking. And its no novelty act. Dishes arent all preserved, but rather use preserved items to accent fresh ingredients: a Cobb salad with fresh greens, tomato, and egg, plus house-smoked bleu cheese dressing, chicken, and bacon; smoked tomato soup with fresh basil mousse; smoked short rib Benedict for brunch. A variety of jarred preserves and pickles are available retail, too. $$-$$$. Sumo Sushi Bar & Grill17630 Collins Ave., 305-682-1243Sushi may well have been served in Sunny Isles before this longtime neighborhood favorite opened, but Sumo was the neighborhoods first sushi bar to double as a popular lounge/hangout as well as restaurant. Ladies nights are legend. While Thai and Chinese dishes are available, as well as purist nigiri, few can resist the truly sumo-wrestler-size maki rolls, the more over-the-top, the better. Our bet for biggest crowd pleaser: the spicy Pink Lady (shrimp tempura, avocado, masago, cilantro, and spicy mayo, topped with rich scallop-studded dynamite sauce. $$-$$$ Timo17624 Collins Ave., 305-936-1008Since opening in 2003, the inventive yet clean and unfussy Italian/ Mediterranean-inspired seasonal food at this hot spot, created by chef/owner Tim Andriola (at the time best known for his stints at Chef Allens and Marks South Beach), has been garnering local and national raves. Dont bother reading them. Andriolas dishes speak for themselves: a salad of crisp oysters atop frise, cannelloni bean, and pancetta; foie gras crostini with a subtle caramelized orange sauce; a blue crab raviolo with toasted pignolias and brown butter; or a wood-oven three-cheese white pizza. $$$-$$$$ Werner Staubs Peppermill350 Bayview Dr., 305-466-2016Itll likely be years until diners stop instinctively heading for the tropic-alpine chalet that formerly housed the Peppermill at the Waterways in Aventura. But this new indoor/outdoor spaces bay views are much more spectacular. And the food is the same unique old-school stuff. Seafood is featured, and while there are contemporary preparations, you cant resist hard-to-find retro dishes like imported Dover sole almondine, Swiss-style poached trout with champagne-shallot sauce, an elaborate steak tartar, and for dessert, peach Melba or strawberries Romanoff. $$$ 305-758-05167941 biscayne blvd., miamiSee our extensive Thai & Sushi menu at www.SiamRiceThaiAndSushi.com DINE IN TAKE OUT DELIVERY PARTY CATERINGOpen 7 Days for Lunch and Dinner FOLLOW US ON Mon-Fri 11:30AM 11PM; Sat-Sun 12:30PM 11PM Your purchase of $30+(excluding Lunch Specials) with this ad. exp. 2/28/14$5OFF HAPPY VALENTINES DAY!THAI & JAPANESE LUNCH SPECIALS from $7.99MonSat

PAGE 91

Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT S

PAGE 92

Dining Guide: RESTAU R ANT S DESIGN DISTRICT: 3800 N MIAMI AVE FOR LEASE | $75 PSF NNN || 6,000 SF AVAILABLE Get noticed at this premium retail space located at the corner of a four-way intersection at the gateway to the trendy Design District. This soon-to-be completed 16,000 SF bi-level building features four large spaces. Join anchor tenant Mitchel Gold + Bob Williams. TONY ARELLANO | 305 571 9991 info@metro1cre.com ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT DISTRICT: FILLING STATION LOFTS FOR LEASE | INQUIRE TODAY Now available Filling Station Lofts. 81 Units ranging from 878 to 2,000 SF. Lofts have 18 ft ceilings, concrete wood, stainless steel, glass, and imported NYC tile. Live steps away from Wynwood and the Arsht Center, and minutes to South Beach and Downtown. CESAR DELAFLOR | 305 571 9991 info@metroproperties.com UPPER EASTSIDE: CALL FOR DETAILS FOR SALE: RESTAURANT OPPORTUNITY Exclusive opportunity to acquire a successful business, land and a Dual 4 COP license on trendy Upper Eastside. 2013 gross sales over $860,000. The building is 2,630 SF and sits on a 17,546 SF lot. *Picture is not actual property PETER ANDOLINA | 305 989 3934 pandolina@metro1cre.com DESIGN DISTRICT: 3801 N MIAMI AVE FOR SALE | $4.6 M Exclusive opportunity to acquire a corner building with the highest visibility in the Design District. This property will t a variety of uses including retail, restaurant, or an array of mixed uses. Allows up to +/129,000 SF of gross development and buildings up to 20 stories high. TONY CHO | 305 571 9991 info@metro1cre.com WYNWOOD: 2049 N MIAMI AVE FOR SALE | $7.5 M 17,963 SF portfolio of three properties located in the heart of the Wynwood Arts District featuring multiple roll-up doors, high ceilings, AC, renovated exterior / interior and a large frontage on N. Miami Avenue. TONY CHO | 305 571 9991 info@metro1cre.com HISTORIC BUENA VISTA EAST: 78 NE 47 ST FOR SALE | $679,000 3 BD / 2 BA + den, hidden gem in the heart of the Design District! Exquisitely remodeled home featuring a complete renovation from new electrical, pluming, A/C and sprinkler system, to designer carport with electrical gate. Great for entertaining stunning pool and an A/C cottage with a full bathroom. CESAR DELAFLOR | 305 571 9991 info@metroproperties.com HISTORIC BUENA VISTA: 4700 NE MIAMI CT FOR SALE | $479,000 Beautiful Historic Design District Home. This 3 BD / 2 BA sits on a great corner lot & offers a newly renovated kitchen, original wood ooring, 1 car garage and a private yard. Ready for a new owners personal touch, this home is a diamond in the rough with the right location at the best time in the market. Come in and make it yours. CESAR DELAFLOR | 305 571 9991 info@metroproperties.comCONTACT US TODAY IF YOU ARE LOOKING TO BUY, SELL OR LEASE WITHIN THE URBAN CORE. metro1.com RESIDENTIAL SHOWCASE COMMERCIAL SHOWCASE BRICKELL: BRICKEL BAY DR FULLY LEASED RETAIL FOR SALE | $1.9 M Purchase a fully leased 4,500 SF restaurant space. This space is located within a condo-hotel lobby atmosphere with local and tourist pedestrian trafc. Restaurant capacity is approximately 210 seats. Asking price is 1.9 M approximately yielding a 6.75% CAP return. ANDRES LEMOS | 305 409 3737 alemos@metro1cre.com DESIGN DISTRICT: 70-74 NE 40 ST FOR SALE | $9 M LEASE | $125 PSF NNN Prime Design District retail building for lease. Total SF equals 4,500 with a 500 SF urban green space located in the back. Landlord will consider adding SF + additional oors for qualied credit tenants. Will consider long term leases. Also available for sale. TONY CHO | 305 571 9991 info@metro1cre.com DESIGN DISTRICT: 4030 N MIAMI AVE FOR LEASE | SHORT TERM LEASES AVAILABLE Prime street retail located at the entrance of Miamis Design District, only a block away from the 195 exit. This street facing 7,642 SF bi-level space is perfect for a variety of uses. TONY CHO | 305 571 9991 info@metro1cre.com BAYSIDE: 740 NE 71 ST FOR SALE | $439,000 Best priced home East of Biscayne! 3 bdrm/2 bath contemporary pool home w/ an open oor plan. Nestled beneath a canopy of oak trees and staghorn ferns on a 9,375 SF oversized fenced lot. New hurricane impact windows, new roof, and new central A/C. Walk to bay, park, gym, restaurants and more. We are your Upper Eastside experts! MARCY KAPLAN & LORI BRANDT | 786 543 5755 gimmeshelter@metro1properties.com SELLER MOTIVATED JUST LISTED JUST LISTEDOMNI / EDGEWATER: 1950 NW 1 AVE FOR SALE | $10.9 M Rare Full City Block Development Opportunity (2.49 acres). Recently appraised for $15 M! Owner is relocating and willing to sell at a steep discount. 4% co-broker commission. Phased development, also great for land-banking for future appreciation. TONY CHO | 305 571 9991 info@metro1cre.com