Title: Biscayne times
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00099644/00029
 Material Information
Title: Biscayne times
Physical Description: Newspaper
Language: English
Publisher: Biscayne Media, LLC
Place of Publication: Miami, Florida
Publication Date: May 2009
Copyright Date: 2009
Spatial Coverage: United States -- Florida -- Dade -- Biscayne Boulevard Corridor
Coordinates: 25.831647 x -80.182343 ( Place of Publication )
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00099644
Volume ID: VID00029
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.


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

Volume 7, Issue 3

By Erik Bojnansky

Nearly 100 City of Miami employees made
more than $200,000 last year

Miami had only recently shed
its notorious distinction as the
nation's poorest municipality,
thanks to the buoying effects of the real-
estate boom, just in time to get clobbered
by the nationwide recession/depression

rooted in the collapse of that very boom.
Now the good times are over, and the city
faces declining revenues across the board.
Yet even with an 8.2 percent un-
employment rate for Miami-Dade and
Broward counties, and shrinking tax

revenues, Miami, with a population of
404,048 and a median income just over
$26,000 per year, continues to compen-
sate dozens of employees at pay rates
far greater than comparable cities. Much
of the expense is related to the city's lax

management of its fire department, where
salaries negotiated by the firefighters'
union are generous, and where vacancies
Continued on page 14


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


May 2009

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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009

AdrienneArsht Center


Madama Butterny FREE Family Fest
8PM 11:30AM-1:30PM
Daniel Bernard Madama Butterfly
Roumain with special 8PM [
guest Emeline Michel!
S8PM The Tchaikovsky
Recently seen as Concert
a special guest on 8PM [
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Madama Butterfly Madarma Piano Slam The Madama Butterfly Madama Butterfly
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heartbreaking tale of
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Family fortune and
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II I I I i llll: h i IlI

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009



Jim Mullin
Brian Horowitz
Victor Barrenchea, Erik Bojnansky, Pamela
Robin Brandt, Terence Cantarella, Bill
Citara, Wendy Doscher-Smith, Kathy
Glasgow, Jim W. Harper, Lisa Hartman, Jen
Karetnick, Jack King, Derek McCann, Frank
Rollason, Silvia Ros, Jeff Shimonski
Marco Fernandez

Marc Ruehle
Wilmer Ametin
Marcy Mock
DP Designs
The Biscayne Times welcomes proposals for
articles and press releases. Submitted material
may be edited for length, clarity, and content.
All submitted material becomes the property of
The Biscayne Times. Please be sure to include
your name, address and telephone number in
all correspondence.
All articles, photos, and artwork in the
Biscayne Times are copyrighted by Biscayne
Media, LLC. Any duplication or reprinting
without authorized written consent from the
publisher is prohibited.
The Biscayne Times is published the first
week of each month. We are hand delivered
to all the homes along both sides of Biscayne
Boulevard from downtown and the Venetian
Islands to Arch Creek.


FPL's Tree Assassins: It's
All About Profits
Regarding Jeff Shimonski's tale of
"Good Trees in Bad Locations" (April
2009), I might have preferred a headline
like "Bad Utility Lines in Bad Locations."
Mr. Shimonski advises that "V-pruning
of trees located directly beneath utility
wires is now an accepted practice," and
he notes that the "directional pruning" prac-
ticed by FPL "doesn't look very natural but
is much better for the tree and allows for a
longer pruning cycle." These are mislead-
ing observations which may unfortunately
lead the layperson to buy into them.
The notion that any public utility has
the inherent right to visually pollute our
communities with unbridled overhead
power lines, ugly concrete or tar-stained
wood poles, and disastrous pruning tech-
niques are anathema to sound residential
planning and the highest standards of
community design.
And the idea that the pruning of trees
by FPL's "tree assassins" is no\\ an
accepted practice" could not be further
from the truth. Such action may be ac-
cepted by FPL, by Asplundh Tree Com-
pany (the "pruners"), and by the unin-
formed, but it is highly unlikely that even
the most novice gardener would support

the argument that FPL cares about trees,
or about how they are pruned.
One need merely observe the myriad
examples of unprofessional, damaging
pnming being practiced by FPL's minions to
understand the significant degree to which
our tree canopy and our community aesthetic
are being sacrificed for FPL profits.
Ted Baker landscape architect

Ikea Will Not Save the
Jen Karetnick's article on downtown
Miami Shores ("Ghost Village," April
2009) was not only interesting but helpful
in terms of understanding why it looks the
way it does (a ghost town). However, as
one who has worked with similar down-
towns hoping to restock themselves with
shops, I can tell you that national chains
will not even look at a place like NE 2nd
Avenue. We're fooling ourselves if we think
they will locate here.
National chains (retail and casual fine
dining) will only locate in malls, big-box
centers, and comer pod sites. They will not
change their floor plan requirements no
matter how affluent a neighborhood may be.
Our village fathers would be
better off convincing the Village Place

landlords to incubate their empty shops
with deeply discounted rents that would
allow very small entrepreneurs to estab-
lish a foothold on the avenue for the first
year or two. As a small business owner,
I can tell you that my rent is my biggest
concern. Surely it is better to get $500 a
month for 500 square feet, for the first
year, than nothing.
Jesse Walters
Miami Shores

Winner of This Month's
Clever Idea Award:
In one of Derek McCann's police
reports ("Secure All Sticky Substances,"
April 2009) he mentioned a person who
had his vehicle registration decal stolen. I'd
like to offer advice to everyone on how to
avoid that ever happening. Once you apply
your decal, score it with a sharp knife or
razor blade. I score mine about six times di-
agonally. If someone tries to peel it off, he
can't take the whole decal but only a small
portion of it. I have never lost a registration
since I've been doing that.
Keep up the good work and thank
you for a paper that is a treat to read.
Name Withheld by Request
Continued on page 6


G rav y T rain ........................................... ................. 1

Feedback: Letters........................... ......... ......... ... 4
M iam i's K ing: Jack K ing ................................. ...... ........... 10
W ord on the Street .................... .. .. ... ... ............. ... 12

B izB uzz ............... ................ .............................. 8
Advertiser Directory........................ .. .......................... 8

Jen Karetnick: Rackless in the Village:
A Two-W heeled Odyssey ................................ ..... ............ 20
Frank Rollason: Put on a Happy Face....................................... 22
Wendy Doscher-Smith: Dark Skies, Cold Rain, and Death.........24

Biscayne Crim e Beat ...................................... ... ............. 32

MOCA: Ultimately It's All About People ................................ 34
A rt Listings .... ................... .............. ...... .... ........... ... 36
C culture B riefs......................... ..... ....... .......... . ............. .. 39

G reen on B lue .......................................... ........... ............. 40

Kids and the City: Love Is All There Is.................................... 42
Your Garden: Falling Leaves? Must Be Springtime.................... 43
Pawsitively Pets: A Primer on Puppies, Part 2 ..........................44
Harper's Environment: The Ocean's Most Fearsome Predators.. 46

Museo Vault: Fort Knox Redefined.......................................... 26 .......
R restaurant L istings ....................................................................... 47
M iami Arts Charter: A School Is Born ........................................ 27 ,
W ine: Red, W white, and You...... .................. ................. 48
Miami Shores: Low Turnout but High Hopes.............................. 27

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com May 2009

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009

beau living


81i 1 B: .-.ne 8. i -v rd. S.ite 102, '. -ir-i Fl .:4138 TeL 305 751 1511 Fax 305 751 1512
C fli n a c t ., b e a u I 'C n cg w w w b e sa ~ vin g c o
pen Mp e O S A T 11 am p U N 1:2 pm 6 p m
May 2009 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com 5


Continued from page 4

This Month's Redundancy
Award: Miami's Brain-
Dead Politicians
I'd like to compliment your newspa-
per on how well you keep the community
informed on local issues. I never used
to read Biscayne Times. I'd pick it up
from the driveway and throw it away.
But I made the mistake of opening it up
one time and haven't stopped reading it
It gets me all fired up when I read
about our wonderful, brilliant local politi-
cians. In my 62 years, I have never seen
a community with such a dysfunctional
governing class as Miami. They are
greedy, thoughtless, uncaring, lack any
common sense, and don't seem to ever
care about the opinions of the residents.
Can you sense my disgust?
I read Erik Bojnansky's article about
parks advocate Steve Hagen ("You've
Got Mail...Lots and Lots of It," March
2009) and would like to say that, per-
sonally, I want to see Bicentennial Park
remain as an open green space. Between

the city officials and the developers, they
would take all of our parks and turn them
into concrete.
Here's something else: I've noticed
not one tree has been planted along Bis-
cayne Boulevard since about December.
They stopped somewhere around 62nd
Street during the holidays. They were
cutting the openings in the sidewalks and
planting trees and then boom! .; .ri,,, '
What's going on? Has the city told
the state that from 62nd Street to 87th
Street they don't think trees are necessary?
Excuse me, but I've always hated the way
the boulevard looks south of Miami Shores
and down past 79th Street. This is the sec-
tion of the Boulevard that needs a face-lift
the most. Come on, Miami, get off your
dead ass and finish the project you started.
We want to see more trees.
It's about time you brain-dead politicians
started listening to the people of Miami.
Dennis Tinsman
Miami Shores

Live Green, Swim Green
Jim W. Harper's article Ni%\\ Ideas
for New Pools" (March 2009) offers sev-
eral great suggestions to reduce energy

consumption while heating your pool. I
must respectfully object, though, to the
statement that a bubble pool blanket
can heat water as much as ten degrees.
"Solar" bubble pool blankets are great for
keeping heat in a pool (most of the heat
loss in a pool comes from evaporation),
but they do not effectively heat the water.
I have to add I was a bit surprised
when the article made no mention of
solar as a method of heating a pool.
While heat pumps are certainly the next
best alternative to solar, an average
400,000 BTU heat pump still produces
more than 38 tons of C02 emissions a
year! Heat pumps use electricity, and as
you may know, most electricity in this
country comes from the burning of coal.
Solar, on the other hand, produces
zero toxic greenhouse gas emissions.
With no operating costs (solar energy
is free and require little maintenance),
pool owners typically see a payback
period of two years or less. Most solar
heaters available today carry at least
a ten-year warranty, and systems have
been known to last more than 20 years.
For pool owners already heating their
pools with a gas, electric, or propane
heater, solar can be installed to work

as the primary source of heat, with the
existing heater as a backup.
The bottom line is this: Heating a
swimming pool with fossil-fuels is a
luxury this country can no longer afford.
Dan Sizelove
Aquatherm Industries, Inc.
Lakewood, New Jersey

No More Cookie-Cutter
Regarding Jeff Shimonski's article
"Fear and the Fig Whitefly" (March 2009),
he was right on point. Drive around our
lush city and you'll see countless cookie-
cutter ficus hedges. We are so privileged
to live in a tropical paradise where you
can grow countless other plants, which
are much more interesting to the eye and
which celebrate garden diversity.
Cheers for suggesting tough and beauti-
ful varieties such as the colorful crotons,
the loyal and everlasting silver buttonwood,
and the feisty clusia. The whitefly will not
feast on those and it will make for more
interesting gardens. Thanks for this article.
Laura Santamaria
Continued on page 19

i AI i. "!. ; *': ".W A .-r

CHOIR OF i207"

A AEPN i'\t:


* Unemployment
-Real Estate
* Debt C oildalon
*Childrn face painting
ga~es, bounce house
* Health Screenngs f HIV AIDS0
High Blood Prtsure, Diabdtes,
Auditry and Dental Tests.
-Finanrcal Support

* MwlWediiWiof
* Immigration
ntral health 4rvWns

- Food stamps


MAY 16

S10:00 AM -4:00 PM

unity FREE!
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May 2009

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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com




J ii'


4 Bdr 2 Bth plus 1 Bdr 1 Bth
GuestHouse or In-Laws Qtrs approx
3000 Sq. Ft. plus Garage Wow!
Great Deal in Biscayne Point! only $799K

4 Br / 3.5 Bth, Pool, Garage, 205' on Water
OWF with only 30% down. Time & Terms Neg.
Turnkey, High Ceilings, Hurricane Impact Windows,
4-Star Chef Gas Island Kitchen.
1/3 Acre with 205' Dock. $1.4M


5Bd/3ba, Pool, 4,500 Sf., Exquisite Feng Shui
Decor, South Beach Contemporary
To The Max!!!! Just Completed In January 2008.
3 Mile Views To Haulover Cut Asking S3.69M

Price Includes Business & 1/2 Acre of
Land. Located in South Ft. Lauderdale on
US1, 4COP Lic. Included. Great Location
Priced at Land value. S2.4M
Only 20% down @ 6% fixed int.!!!

5 Br / 5 Bth, Pool, 2 Car Garage, 5000 Sq FL, Oversized Lot
Features Custom Island, Resort Slyle Deck.
Buill by world-renowned architect for
100' Dockaoe with Power. S1.69M

4 Br / 2 Bth, HTD Pool, 512K Boat Lift
Lush Private Landscaping surrounds gorgeous completely
remodeled 2006 home. New barrel tile roof, new central
AC & ductwork. Wood & ile loom. Granite kit w/ SS App.
Crown molding, storm shutters, Gazebo & Bar. 5725K

For Rent
j $5,600/mnth

4bdr 3blh Pool 2 Car Garage, New Built Add
2008 Hi Vaulted, Ceilings Over 3200SF
24'marble 2008 Granite Kitchen and Baths
For Sale or Lease Option S1.69K

3bd/2ba, Pool, 2-Car Garage, Remodeled,
New Kitchen, New Hurricane Impact
Windows and New 35KW Generator

4 Br / 3.5 Bth, Pool, 4100 Sq Ft
Huge Master Suite & Bath, Gourmet Gas Kitchen,
Lush Tropical Coconut Grove Landscape, Waterfall
Pool Completed 2009. S849K

2/1 all brand new: granite kitchen, floors,
windows & doors. Lush & tropical
huge acre lot. Highly sought after street!
Only $239K

4 Br/ 3 Bth, 3000 Sq Ft
New seawall & dock. A steal. S649K


75' of Frontage x 125' Deep
Owner will finance w 40% down. Time &
Terms Neg. Located on SR 441 City of N.
Miami. Priced at land value S399K

1/3 Acre, 15,000 Sf., 103 Ft. On The Bay
You Can See Forever, Wide Open Views!
Only 20% down @ 6% fixed int.!!!
I fSCjEr-,t
0,1-, ,1 Itnd

Hi-vaulted ceilings. Italian custom gas
Kitchen, Turnkey! New 75'dock.

3Bdr 3Bth Pool All New 2006 W/Finest Upgrades,
Custom Waterfall Entry, 24' Marble Floors, Oversized
Wraparound Island Maple & Granite Kit, All Marble
Baths, New Root, 75' of Dockage W/2 Boat Davits.
New Schools. S899

4 Br / 2 Bth, Pool, Boatlif
Nice wide open floor plan, "Great Room". Custom
built wet bar, Granite Kitchen, Crown molding
throughout. 24-Hr Guarded Community. S799K

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009


BizBuzz: May 2009

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

you're reading this column on May 2, but
are not reading it at the Cinco de MiMo fes-
eal, had on over immediately. And bring
your dog pal(s). Why? Because along with the
people-oriented festivities are two doggie social
events: the Pink PoochParade & Contest and
the grand opening of Smiling Pets' new Doggie
Bag Cafe and Pet Boutique, in the vet clinic's
breezeway. Actually the parade concludes
at Smiling Pets (under the Coppertone sign,
at 7310 Biscayne Blvd; 305-609-4288),
where you and your canine pal can enjoy
free "Mutt-inis" and dog treats.
A little later this month comes Mother's
Day, which, according to the National Res-
taurant Association, is the most popular day
of the year for restaurant dining. At the Royal
Bavarian Schnitzel Haus (1085 NE 79th St.;
305-754-8002), Alex Richter will be cooking
up the official Mother's Day feast on Sunday,
May 10 from noonto 10:00 p.m. In addition
to brunch specials, the regular menu is avail-
able, and seating is in either the cozy indoor
dining room or the outdoor biergarten.
At Bagels & Company (11064
Biscayne Blvd., 305-892-2435), David
Cohen is offering not one but three
specials. Daily in May, anyone buying a
dozen bagels gets to choose one of three
freebies: a pound of cream cheese, an
extra dozen bagels, or a coupon for a free
dozen anytime in the following 30 days.
On Tuesday eat-in customers who buy
an entree and drink get a second entree
(of equal or lesser value) for free. And on
$5 Friday, you can steal any hefty deli
sandwich for a five-spot.

By Pamela Robin Brandt
BT Contributor

Speaking of steals: At noon on Saturday,
May 16, Douglas Elliman Florida will be
conducting a reserved-bid auction to sell an
8625-square-foot, commercially zoned vacant
lot in Miami Shores a rarity in the village.
Bidding begins at just $10,000, with ten-
percent buyer's premium going to the winner.
Real estate broker Brian Carter (btcarter@
ellimanflorida.com; 305-582-2424) says the
land "could be developed or possibly used as
more parking space."
"Everyone talks about it. No one
does anything about it." In Miami that
old saw about the weather could easily
be applied to live music. But this month
Live! Modem School of Music is doing
something. On May 17, six of the school's
bands will present a "Rockin' Out" concert
downtown, at the Cisneros Fontanals Art
Foundation. The program runs from 5:00-
6:30 p.m. at 1018 N. Miami Ave. Price is
only $5. Cover songs will include selec-
tions from Guns N' Roses, Queen, and
Metallica, so don't forget the black eye
shadow. Info: 305-893-0191.
What's a place to do when its prod-
ucts are almost too unique to describe?
Consider Miami Beach Pebbles and
luxe + natural, two sister companies
(parented by The Minimalist Group), at
the same address (3214 NE 2nd Ave.;
305-438-1775) in Midtown. The former
imports decorative pebbles, and also
manufactures pebble tiles (flat, on-edge,
or impossibly gorgeous custom-designed
ones). The latter's specialty is designer
items that mix luxury and nature, like
acrylic resin LuxeCast panels with
natural materials (bamboo, mahogany
shavings, grasses, much more) artfully

embedded in them. You've gotta see it to
believe it. So to encourage such viewing,
TMG is giving away a free 40-pound bag
of beach pebbles to browsers (or buyers,
but no purchase necessary) every Satur-
day in May, from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Looking for a Mother's Day gift that's
as special as mom? At new, eco-friendly
Imagine Gifts (Shops at Midtown, 3252
NE 1st Ave. #108; 305-704-8246), you'll
find organic soy candles, hand-painted
scarves, bath soaps, and locally crafted
jewelry, plus recycled wrapping paper and
unusual greeting cards. Tell Gregg or Jos6
Luis you read about Imagine in the BT and
get an extra 15 percent off purchases of $50
or more, May 4-10.
Throughout the month, mention the
BT at Chantik Imports (7293 Biscayne
Blvd., 305-759-4578) for extra savings
on selected items from the store's stock
of Indonesian furnishings and accesso-
ries lighting, masks, panels, carvings,
ceramics, baskets, furniture, and art.
April showers bring May flowers or
at least they will if you plant the free packet
of seeds Allstate Insurance Company
(8703 Biscayne Blvd.; 305-754-0002) is
offering this month to renters who drop
by for a quote on renter's insurance. You
may assume you personal possessions
are covered by your landlord's insurance
policy, but that's not true. Fortunately,
says Allstate's Veronica Oliveraleon, for a
renter's policy that protects your all stuff,
"the typical annual premium for $15,000 of
contents is under $300 $25 per month."
In response to overwhelming e-mails
from wine-loving workaholics who were
missing out on the Friday 4:00-7:00

Adrienne Arsht Center
www arshtcenter org
Page 3
Design District Art+ Design
Page 13
I.D. Art Supply
Page 35
Imagine Gifts M
3252 NE 1st Ave
Page 23
Knight Foundation ME
www knightart org
Page 12
Miami Shores
Presbyterian Church
Page 43
Shops at Midtown
Kids With Heart
Page 10

Shops at Midtown
Family Fun Day
Page 16
St. Martha's Church
Page 37
Trader John's Records
& Books
Page 41
Unity on the Bay U
411 NE 21st St
Page 6
Europa Car Wash and Cafe
Page 22
Miami Parking Authority
Page 30
Plaza Tire & Auto
Page 24

Dasani Jewels
Page 28
Children's Village
Montessori School &
Day Care
Page 43
Uve! Music School
Page 42
Miami Shores Church
School 5
603 NE 96th St
Page 42
Miami Arts Charter School
Page 11
Allied Public Adjusters
Page 45

Law Offices of Jake Miller
Page 9
Law Offices of Steven
K. Baird
Page 32
Beau Living
Page 5
Casca Doce
Page 20
Chantik Imports
Page 41
Details at Home
Page 21
Page 35
Planet Lighting
Page 32

Teak Only
Page 44
Bay Oaks Home
Page 20
Dental Options
Page 30
Page 17
Holistic Healing Center
Page 22
Humana Miami
Page 44
Nails Etc.
Page 37
OM Power Yoga M
9301 NE 6th Ave
(M Power Project Wellness)
Page 46

9 to 5 Redesign
Page 38
All Florida Pool & Spa
Page 29
Arco Glass & Windows
Page 38
Barnett Tree Service
Page 41
Dart Services
Page 24
Guarantee Floridian
Page 33
Karnak Blinds
Page 38
I Will Clean for You
Page 38

Lighting Electric of Miami
Page 38
Miami Beach
Pebbles M
3214 NE 2nd Ave
Page 21
Re: Design Studio
Architecture & Interiors
Page 35
Renu at Hand
Page 18
Allstate Insurance
Page 18
Adam's Veterinary Clini
Page 45
Junior's Pet Grooming
Page 45

Smiling Pets
Page 45
Douglas Elliman
Page 2
Jeff Tomlinson Realty
Group ME
wwwjeffrealtor com
Page 7
Miami Spaces
Page 28
Ruben Matz
Page 31
Michael Blynn M
North Mami City Council
Page 19
Carol Besade-Preger E
North Miami City Clerk
Page 19

Bagels & Co.
Page 57
Bengal Indian Cuisine
Page 56
Blue Marlin Fish House
Page 52
Buena Vista Bistro
Page 59
Chef Creole
Page 55
C6te Gourmet
Page 58
Dunkin' Donuts
Page 55
Joey's Italian Cafe
2506 NW2ndAve.
Page 1

Laurenzo's Italian Market
Page 60
Metro Organic Bistro
Page 53
Mike's at Venetia
Page 51
Page 53
Pizza Fiore
Page 54
Red Light M
7700 Biscayne Blvd.
Page 49
Royal Bavarian Schnitzel
Page 56
River Oyster Bar
Page 50

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com May 2009

p.m. wine tasting at Laurenzo's Italian
Market (16385 W. Dixie Hwy.; 305-945-
6381), the tasting have been switched to
Saturday afternoons from noon to 5:00
p.m. Though tasting remain "100-percent
complimentary," says Larry "The Wine
Guy" Baker, the format has changed a bit.
Themes continue to vary, but five wines are
now sampled each week at the five-hour
tasting. Those who particularly like one
wine enough to want a full five-ounce glass
can buy one for $5. And those buying a
case of any wines sampled (mixed or one
wine) will get an additional five percent
off Laurenzo's standard case discount. Just
think "five" and you can't miss.
Finally this community newspaper
would like to welcome a true community
restaurant, Joey's Italian Caf6 (2506
NW 2nd Ave.; 305-438-0488). You
doubtless noticed that the restaurant, run
by Joey and Thea Goldman, made its
debut with the BT's new ad space on the
front cover. Many of you already know
that Joey's is not Italian-American, not
Argentine-Italian, not fancy-schmancy
phony-baloney Italian/Continental. It is
an authentic Italian hangout, where the
chef is from Treviso and the prices are so
low they're almost unbelievable. "Would
you even believe me if I told you that
some customers come in five nights a
week?" laughs Thea. "I've had to put up
a blackboard for specials because many
people have already worked their way
through the whole menu."

. 1,,,,. ti,,' special coming up at your
business? Send info to bizbuzz@bis-
caynetimes.com. For BT advertisers only.


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009

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May 2009

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com




Reality Check: Miami Is Going Broke

No surprise, really, when you consider all the bloated salaries

By Jack King
BT Contributor

On the cover of this august
publication this month you will
find a story about the compensa-
tion of City of Miami employees. The
story itself is pretty amazing, but sadly
it's only a small part of the financial
problems the city will encounter in the
coming months and years. In fact the
city is already in the throes of a budget
shortfall, but you would never know
it listening to the city commission, the
mayor, and the city manager.
Actually, that's not quite true as
Commissioner Tomas Regalado, who
is running for mayor, has been rail-
ing about budget shortfalls for many
months now. The trouble is that no one
believes or wants to believe this
is a problem. The city commission, the
city management, and many of our
fellow citizens are in full denial that
there's even a problem. Believe me,
there is, and it will only get worse.
Miami's finances are so out of whack
that it may take a serious restructuring
to get them back on an even keel. You'll
recall that the city has some experience
in this area. In the 1990s, the state had
to step in and impose a little financial
reality. It took several years to clean up
the mess created by former city manager
Cesar Odio.
Clearly the primary problem is em-
ployee compensation. The BT's cover
story will tell you there are 97 city em-
ployees who made more than $200,000
last year. If that doesn't make you stop
and think, consider this little fac-
toid: There are some 4000 employees

working for the city, and the average
compensation for those employees is
more than $100,000 per year. That's
right, the average annual pay for a city
employee is 100 grand. Obviously the
city is a great place to work, so get in
line they're still hiring.
If you take the number of em-
ployees (4000) and multiply it by the
average annual compensation, you'll
get something close to $400 million
in city salaries. That's pretty astound-
ing when you consider that the total
annual budget for the city is just over
$500 million. That means roughly
80 percent of the city's budget is
used to cover salaries. I don't have
a MBA, but I cannot believe this is
a sustainable business model unless
you're using taxpayers' money.
The fire department is one of the major
problems in this salary predicament. The
city has been reluctant to hire new fire-

Roughly 80 percent of the city's bu
is used to cover salaries. I don't h
a MBA, but I cannot believe this i:
sustainable business model.

fighter trainees because there isn't really a
need for them. There just aren't that many
fires anymore. The city's fire department
has been remarkably successful over the
past 20 years in getting fire-suppression
equipment installed in new buildings. That
accomplishment, along with new, non-
flammable construction materials, means
they've effectively put themselves out of a
job fighting fires.

'"-**- ..-l r -...- u -Y:

-----... -
: ..-- I.

Since it really doesn't
need any more firefighters, the city
hasn't been hiring any. So now the
firefighters on staff are being promoted
to middle management jobs (with no
one to manage) and working
tons of overtime so the city
S has the appropriate number of
ave experienced firefighters on site,
S a even though they have no fires
to fight thanks in no small
part to lots of archaic rules that
haven't been changed in years.
For some reason the city
thinks this is a fine way to do business -
paying out hundreds of thousands each
year for no work. If city leaders believe
this is a good idea, I wonder what they'll
think when these guys retire and start
drawing from Miami's pension plan. Will
that be still more money for no work?
Every now and then, but not often,
the city tries to do something about
its unbridled spending. A couple of

years ago, for example, Commissioner
Regalado introduced and the commis-
sion passed a resolution doing away
with the city's Economic Develop-
ment Department. The department
had been around for years and had
done little if anything. So it seemed
like a good idea to get rid of an agency
that had seven employees, including a
director making $165,000 a year, since
it had no mission statement and no
budget other than salaries.
Two years later the department
remains operational, but still nonfunc-
tional. I asked Regalado what happened
and he told me the city manager (Pete
Hernandez) just ignores the will of
the commission when he wants to. In
case you've forgotten, the city manager
works for the mayor. This is the same
city manager who swore on a stack of
Bibles that no money for the Marlins
stadium would come from the city's
general revenue fund, and then came
back a week after the stadium deal was
done to ask for $9 million from the
aforementioned general fund for
the Marlins.
I don't blame these problems and
issues on the employees. Most of them
come to work and do a good job within
the parameters set for them by the unions
and the administration. The problem is
management and leadership, of which
Mayor Manny Diaz has zero. Right now
he's too busy painting the city green in
hopes of ensuring his "environmental"
legacy. And while he's painting, the
city is cratering financially. Is Manny's
middle name Nero?

Feedback: letters(@biscaynetimes.com

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May 2009

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


It's been almost nine years since the last terrorist attack on American soil. Are you still worried?

Compiled by Victor Barrenechea
"BB I" -* I -- -I| |^_

BT Contributor

John Martin
Store Owner
North Miami
I'm not worried at all
because it hasn't happened
yet. When it does happen.,
it's better to worry about
it after it happens. I was
afraid after 9/11, but time
goes by. Time heals all
wounds. I'm not saying that
it won't happen; it probably
will happen. [The terror-
ists] want you to feel like I
do, then they sock it to you.
But there are so many other
things to worry about. It's
not at the top of my list.

Alicia Kuhnke
Boutique Owner
Miami Shores
Yes, I am. Not as worried
as I used to be. The fact re-
mains that terrorism exists,
but we have to go on. I'm
not as worried as I was
nine years ago. The threat
is still there. It will always
be there. But I think secu-
rity has definitely picked
up. I feel safer.

Michael Morrow
Business Owner
I'm not worried about
terrorism. I wasn't worried
then. I really don't think
about it. We can't live in
fear. But I'm a little more
hopeful. We're taking a
different approach to for-
eign affairs, less of a hard-
line approach. That will
perhaps make everyone
feel safer. The way we're
destroying the environ-
ment is a lot more pressing
than the threat of terrorism.


Amy Palma
Celebrity Make-up Artist
Miami Shores
I'm worried. Just be-
cause it's been nine years
doesn't mean it's any less
of a threat. I'm still very
concerned about it. I think
we're still at risk. Probably
even more so now that the
war in Iraq has created
more anti-American senti-
ment. I think people forget
as time passes, but we're
still in danger.

Whitney Paden
Sales Manager
I actually am still concerned
about terrorism, maybe
even more so than before,
because it's been a long
time since we've had an
attack. Almost too much
time has passed. It makes
me more uncomfortable. I
think we're due for another
attack. Maybe that's pes-
simistic, but I don't feel
safer. I think if you're not
concerned about it, you're
living in denial.

Congratulations to the finalists

of the 2009 Knight Arts Challenge:

S3D Miami/Frederic Snitzer Actors' Playhouse Productions Alliance for Musical Arts, Theater and Tutoring Amy Rosenberg
Available Space BankAtlantic Foundation BELIART/Bernice Steinbaum Broward County Film Society Christy Gast Chopin Foundation
City of Miami Mayor's Office of Film & Cultural Affairs Cisneros Fontanals Art Foundation COOPER Eli Weberman Fairchild Tropical
Botanic Garden Florida Grand Opera Friends of the Bass Museum Girls' Club Goldman Properties Greater Miami Convention and
Visitor's Bureau Hannah Kahn Poetry Foundation Jerome Soimaud Kathleen Hudspeth Locust Projects Mario Ernesto Sanchez/Teatro
Avante Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs Miami-Dade Public Schools Miami-Dade Parks Miami City Ballet
Miami International Film Festival Miami Lighthouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired, Inc. The Nature Conservancy
New World Symphony The Olympia Theater at the Gusman Center for the Performing Arts Performing Arts Center Trust Plum TV
Sculpture Key West Sweat Records UNCF/United Negro College Fund Vizcaya Museum and Gardens Wolfsonian-FIU WPBT

Through the arts, we strive to bring our diverse community together and help transform South Florida.
Winners to be announced Fall 2009. Visit www.KnightArts.org for more information.

SJohn S. and James L.

Knight Foundation _


Ernest Castillo
Locksmith Technician
It's been almost ten years
already. Five years ago, if
you would've asked me
that question, I would have
been a lot more worried. I
think we don't hear about
it much anymore. I don't
think we're safer. I think
it's basically the same. But
I'm more worried about
the price of everything
going up and the economy
than I am terrorism.

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009




SATURDAY / MAY 09 / 7-10 PM
/ KATE GILMORE / By Any Means
New York based artist Kate Gilmore will present "By Any Means," a performance-based
video and a site-specific sculpture in which the physicality of architecture and sculpture
is pitted against the female body and will.
Located at Locust Projects_155 N.E. 38th Street_Suite 100
/SIMON BIRCH / Raw & Loved
"Raw & Loved" is the debut exhibition by the Hong Kong based painter and
video artist, known for his high-energy in-motion portraits.
Located at AE District in the Marcy Building_3852 N. Miami Avenue
This annual juried exhibition is an impressive collection of over 500 artworks from
students attending the Miami-Dade County Public Schools. Organized and presented
by Miami-Dade County Public Schools Division of Social Sciences & Life Skills,
Art Education Program. Located at 4141 N.E. 2nd Avenue_Suite 102

/ HAITIAN HERITAGE MUSEUM / History Since 1804
The Haitian Heritage Museum is proud to present "History Since 1804." This exhibition
shows the richness and beauty of Haitian history through facts, pictures, and artist
renditions dating back from that fateful day of December 5, 1492, through the first
successful slave revolution of 1804, to the striving Heritage of today.
Located at 4141 N.E. 2nd Avenue Suite 105 C



Double Dutch, by Kate Gilmore, 2004. Video still, courtesy of the artist and Smith-Stewart Gallery.

T / 305.573.8116 N.E. 2nd Avenue [ between 39th & 40th Streets ]

May 2009 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


Miami's Top Salaries



FIRE RESCUE 308,317.88
MAYOR'S OFFICE 295,075.22
POLICE 290,532.66
FIRE RESCUE 288,575.59
FIRE RESCUE 280,579.55
FIRE RESCUE 279,551.33
CITY CLERK 277,172.48
FIRE RESCUE 276,364.93
FIRE RESCUE 274,640.02
FIRE RESCUE 273,720.12
FIRE RESCUE 271,806.69
FIRE RESCUE 270,270.48
FIRE RESCUE 267,704.93
POLICE 266,781.99
FIRE RESCUE 264,856.30
FIRE RESCUE 261,448.53
LAW 261,320.67
FIRE RESCUE 260,557.76
FIRE RESCUE 260,206.82
FIRE RESCUE 257,010.41
FIRE RESCUE 250,192.93
FIRE RESCUE 249,170.34
FIRE RESCUE 248,913.37
FIRE RESCUE 248,829.11
FIRE RESCUE 248,318.41
FIRE RESCUE 246,985.86
FIRE RESCUE 244,874.94





Figures represent total 2008 compensation, including overtime, settlements, retroactive pay raises, deferred
compensation, health insurance, cell phone and automobile allowances. Some individuals who retired at the end of
2008 may have received unused vacation and sick time.
Continued on page 15


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009


Gravy Train
Continued from page 14

and strict staffing rules have pushed
overtime pay through the roof.
In calendar year 2008, a total of
97 city employees received more than
$200,000 in compensation, costing tax-
payers more than $22.76 million, accord-
ing to documents prepared by the city's
budget office and department of employ-
ee relations. Interestingly, 84 percent of
those individuals were middle- to high-
level supervisors at the fire department.
Obtaining this information was not
easy, even though under Florida's public
records law it must be made available to
anyone requesting it. In this case, a BT
representative, frustrated in his efforts to
acquire the data on his own, turned to a
city commissioner for help. City bu-
reaucrats did act on the commissioner's
request and produced two spreadsheets
listing every city employee whose total
compensation in 2008 came to $200,000
or more. The commissioner, however,
has since asked not to be identified.
Other city officials, among them
budget director Michael Boudreaux, city
manager Pete Hernandez, and chief fi-
nancial officer Lary Spring, all declined
comment, didn't respond to e-mails (or
in one case an office visit), and didn't
return phone calls. No one, it seems,
wants to discuss, or even be associated
with, questions about how the city can
continue paying such high salaries and
balance the budget when property and
resort taxes are plummeting. Even Mayor
Manny Diaz, never at a loss for comment
when talking about pet projects like a
taxpayer-subsidized Marlins baseball sta-
dium, was tight-lipped about the salaries.
His spokeswoman, Helena Poleo, would
only say this: "He does not have any
Why the reluctance? Because the
issue of overpaying city employees is a

Firefighters make good money. With overtime, they make really
good money.

Atlanta does more with less, and does it far less expensively than Miami.

public relations minefield especially
when it involves the politically active fire
union, known for its ability to mobilize
during elections. As BT contributor Frank

Rollason, a former Miami firefighter
and assistant city manager, put it in a
March column analyzing a proposal to
freeze the salaries of the city's nonunion

Atlanta's Top Salaries

DOA Aviation General Manager Aviation General Mgr Decosta, Benjamin 275,907

EXE Chief Operating Officer Chief Operating Officer Giornelli, Gregory 221,109

DOF Chief Financial Officer Chief Financial Officer Glass, James W. 215,000

LAW City Attorney City Attorney Chandler, Elizabeth B 209,325

DOA Aviation General Manager Aviation Dept Gen Mgr Diaz, Mario C 205,323

APD Chief of Police Police Chief Pennington, Richard J 200,211

employees: "Union families vote in great
numbers and are very active in support-
ing candidates who protect their salaries
and benefits. Nonunion employees serve
at the will of the manager and are safer
Obviously this is not a subject
that Miami officials like to talk about.
Compare that attitude to the City of
Fort Lauderdale, which for the past two
decades has annually released the names
of its highest-paid employees. Headlines
in the Miami Herald and Sun-Sentinel
expressed alarm that 300 of Fort Lauder-
dale's 2500 employees made more than
$100,000 in 2008. Yet only 25 topped the
$200,000 mark, at a cost of $5.4 million.
A more revealing city-to-city com-
parison is Miami and Atlanta. In terms of
population, Atlanta (519,000) is sub-
stantially bigger than Miami (404,000),
but the two cities are very close when it
comes to cost of living and wage levels.
Despite the need to serve 115,000 more
residents, Atlanta has just 500 more city
workers than Miami 4500 vs. 4000.
Plus the City of Atlanta is responsible for
running Hartsfield International Airport,
which is big and busy and comparable to
Miami International Airport. But down
here, the county operates the airport, not
the city.
Somehow Atlanta manages to get ev-
erything done with just six city employ-
ees who make $200,000 per year or more.
Six. Of those, two are airport executives,
meaning they have no equivalent in the
City of Miami and shouldn't be counted.
So a mere four City of Atlanta employees
have salaries in the $200,000 range, com-
pared to 97 for Miami. (For more details,
see accompanying charts.)
Atlanta's Big Six: Police Chief Rich-
ard Pennington, chief financial officer
Margaret Crenshaw, chief operating offi-
cer Greg Giomelli, city attorney Eliza-
beth Chandler, aviation general manager
Benjamin R. DeCosta, and aviation
deputy general manager Amaldo Ruiz.
Total annual salary costs: $1.33 million.
Miami may not have an aviation
department, but it does have a fire depart-
ment, officially known as the Depart-
ment of Fire-Rescue. The department's
current budget is $80.1 million. Of its
685 employees, 81 received more than
$200,000 in total compensation in 2008.
Capt. Jon Hart was the highest-paid
person among that elite crew. In fact he
brought home more money last year than
Continued on page 16

May 2009 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


`a A/IF A
City Commissioner and mayoral City Commissioner and mayoral
candidate Joe Sanchez: Couldn't candidate Tomas Regalado: "It's
be reached for comment. good to work for the government,
Coincidence? I guess."

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Gravy Train
Continued from page 15

anyone employed by the City of Miami:
Robert Suarez, president of the
Miami Association of Fire Fighters
union, says Hart, a rescue supervisor,
and several other supervisors work
marathon hours, sometimes as many as
100 per week, to offset vacancies that
plague the department.
"The only way someone could have
gotten that amount is an enormous
amount of overtime," Suarez says. "That
is not anyone's regular salary."
Also inflating firefighter salaries are
three years' worth of retroactive pay
raises doled out to lieutenants, captains,
and chief fire officers after the Miami
City Commission ratified the fire union's
contract in 2007, Suarez says. Some of
those payments were issued in 2008. As a
result, several workers in the fire depart-
ment were paid more than their bosses.
In addition to Hart, five who held
ranks of captain and chief fire officer
were paid more than city manager
Hernandez, Miami's tenth-highest-paid
employee, who received $274,980.88.
Eleven supervisors are listed as
receiving more than fire Chief Wil-
liam "Shorty" Bryson, who pulled in
$260,557.76. Among them is Thomas
Flores, who retired as an assistant
chief and payroll division boss in
2008 but was brought back briefly as

a consultant to assist the city's pay-
ment of retroactive pay raises. Flores
banked $267,704.93, according to city
documents, which would make him the
15th-highest-paid city employee.
Commissioner Joe Sanchez, a can-
didate for mayor, was unavailable for
comment at deadline. But his commis-
sion aide pointed out that Sanchez was
the lone vote against this year's budget
because it raised residents' garbage fees
- though garbage fees are not directly
affected by employee salaries.
Sanchez's opponent for mayor,
Commissioner Tomas Regalado, wor-
ries the City of Miami will soon face a
huge deficit owing to declining prop-
erty and resort tax revenues, which may
lead to the firing of low-level, low-paid
workers. "I think that there is a total
divorce between reality and city busi-
ness," Regalado says. "The adminis-
tration has not figured out that we are
in an economic crisis. My fear is that,
come budget process, the little people
will be the ones affected and the big
salaries will not be touched. To me that
is not only wrong but also immoral."
As Regalado understands it, there
are plenty of employees among Miami's
4000-plus workforce who make more
than six figures annually. "There are
more than 700 employees who make
$100,000," he says. "That is a very accu-
rate figure. I have heard that from people
Continued on page 18

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com May 2009

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

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May 2009

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Gravy Train
Continued from page 16

who ought to know."
Yet Regalado doesn't want to criti-
cize firefighters' salaries, instead direct-
ing his ire toward "the suits," upper man-
agement. "I think that probably they will
try to shift the focus on uniform people,
but there are a lot of suits who make a lot
of money," he says, adding that several
city departments are top-heavy with three
or four assistant directors.
But even without overtime, firefight-
ers make a decent amount of money. Ac-
cording to Lt. Ignatius "Iggy" Carroll, Jr.,
spokesman for the fire department, the
salary range for rank-and-file firefighters
is between $44,685 and $67,993 per year.
Officers make more. A fire lieutenant's
salary range is between $51,823 and
$81,191. Afire captain's is from $59,956
to $93,934. Chief fire officers are paid
between $69,351 and $108,653. Assistant
fire chiefs, deputy fire chiefs, and fire
chiefs earn salaries between $133,134
and $223,391.
Union president Suarez points out
that fire-rescue responds to 90,000

emergency incidents a year, with 80
percent having to do with medical emer-
gencies and 20 percent dealing with fires.
Suarez also insists that the city would not
have to add so much overtime on top of
firefighters' base salaries if the city were
more adept at filling vacant positions and
issuing promotions. Right now there are
eight captain vacancies and ten lieuten-
ant vacancies within the fire department,
Suarez says. Since the fire-union contract
requires firefighters attached to a station,
a fire truck, or a rescue vehicle to be
supervisors Firefighters, adl
such as Hart
such as Hart department head!
must work
farbeyond employees who r
their normal $200,000 in 20
48-hour shifts. city r
"I know one
of the reasons
[Hart's] salary was high is the city's
delay in promoting captains," he says.
Suarez, a lieutenant, claims he is
actually frustrated that so much money
is going to overtime. He fears that
equipment needs may suffer. "It kills
me because it all comes out of the fire


department's budget," he says.
Firefighters, administrators, and
department heads were not the only
employees who received more than
$200,000 in 2008, according to the
city's spreadsheets. Number two
on the list was Fernando Acosta, a
Miami police officer and sergeant-
at-arms for the Miami Commission.
Acosta earned $295,075.22 in 2008,
according to the city's spreadsheet.
Reached at the mayor's office, Acosta
had this to say: "I wish I made that
much money."
inistrators, and Then he
referred all
were not the only reee
questions to
:eived more than quest s
police Chief
8, according to John Timon-
ords. ey. (Timoney
is number
four on the
city's list, at $290,532.66.)
The Miami Police Department's
public information office did not reply
to e-mailed questions about Acosta's
responsibilities as sergeant-at-arms. "He
drives the mayor around that's it,"
says Tomas Regalado dismissively.

With memories still fresh of a recent
sergeant-at-arms controversy at Miami-
Dade County, where sworn officers
chauffeured county commissioners last
year at a cost of $743,845, BT attempted
to ask Mayor Diaz how Acosta managed
to be paid more than Timoney in 2008,
as well as what duties he performs. In
response, mayoral spokeswoman Poleo
suggested that BT "look up" the sergeant-
at-arms job description.
The city's Employee Relations De-
partment describes a sergeant-at-arms
as "an executive-level position" filled
by a sworn police officer "responsible
for maintaining order and providing
security during any official assembly of
the city commission." The officer also
provides "protective coverage" to city
commissioners and is responsible for
"coordinating necessary transportation
for city commissioners to meetings and
special events."
In other words, chauffer city com-
missioners around town and make sure
nobody gets out of hand at city hall.

Feedback: letters@ibiscaynetimes.com

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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009


Continued from page 6
So Who Really Cares? You
Care, That's Who.
After reading Wendy Doscher-Smith's
column about her use of the "F bomb"
("Me and My Foul Mouth," March 2009),
I would say that any person claiming
"not to care" is usually defending a weak
position, and certainly persons who feel
shame for their actions should realize
the fault is all their own. I appreciate the
ridiculousness of censoring language, but
it's far more ridiculous to see a grown
woman put herself in the emotional posi-
tion of a second-grader over it.
Other people exist, and you are
accountable for the consequences of
your actions.
Rajan Purcell

The Uncluttered Life
Thank you so much for Jim W.
Harper's timely article "World-Class
Gluttons" (February 2009). As a personal
organizer who specializes in helping
people de-clutter their homes, I regularly

see the effects of Americans' unthinking
consumption, bringing me regular busi-
ness from those who need help in getting
out from under piles of unnecessary
We Americans regularly purchase
hundreds of items because they catch our
eye or seem to be a bargain, without ever
asking ourselves whether we truly need
them. The environmental movement is
often regarded as being made up of ho-
lier-than-thou, goody-two-shoes people,
but really, many of the modest practices
they (and Harper's article) espouse are in
the consumer's best interest. Purchasing
less-than-necessary items costs money
and emotional energy, and it requires one
to have ever-larger (and more expensive)
dwellings to store things.
I'm hoping that the silver lining to
the current economic crisis is that people
begin to evaluate their true material needs
and priorities, financial and personal. The
burgeoning frugality-simplicity-environ-
mental movement is not just good for the
environment and the pocketbook it's
great for the spirit, too.
Amy McKenna

SSecured a yearly $1.7 million grant from
the half-penny transportation tax,
exclusively for North Miami transportation

*Successfully lobbied U.. Congress
for stimulus funds directed to North Miami

SEnsured that public safety remains
a top priority In North Miami

a Fought to lower our water bills

Secured substantial Improvements
his District, including road repairs,
landscaped turn about, traffic-calming
devices and security walls.

SSuccessfully fought for strict height
imitations for residential property
5e w a oaon cunq, &or"dV_ n T d May ,i.,.., ,X

CrJ -,~ iru ."'.. ".,. .Du i Ot L* .,'' '1:, .;i ,' ,.."

May 2009

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


Rackless in the Village: A Two-Wheeled Odyssey

The Shores is not exactly bicycle-friendly

"I enjoy riding my bicycle around the village.
One of my favorite stops is Starbucks. As if the
parking lot isn't enough of a disaster for cars, I
have even more trouble parking my bike. I used
to chain it to a stop sign in a patch of grass on
the comer. It was the only place I could find when
Starbucks first opened. That spot disappeared
quickly as they put up a giant sign and bushes so
I can no longer get to the stop sign."
W q l' f

By Jen Karetnick, BT Contributor &
Cathi Marro, Special to BT
Have you ever noticed the lack of bicycle
racks in the Shores? I didn't. Perhaps
because, like the gas guzzler I am, I drive
everywhere I go around this tiny village of ours.
But my dear friend Cathi Marro, a professional
musician (I play flute with her in the Miami Shores
Flute Ensemble), who lives just outside the Miami
Shores in unincorporated territory, likes to two-
wheel it, for both economic and ecologic reasons.
For some time now, as she gets more and
more frustrated, she's been sending me photos
(with captions!) of everywhere she has to chain
her bicycle when she makes a stop in the Shores.
I've decided it would benefit all of us vil-
lagers and our newly elected leaders alike to
see her photo essay. And before you take note of
her eccentric sense of humor, let me just tell you:
Yes, she happens to be good friends with another
of our Biscayne Times columnists in addition to
me. Can you guess who?

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May 2009

00F'w .


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009


By Frank Rollason
BT Contributor
et's say you're driving along
Biscayne Boulevard in the Upper
Eastside. It's rush hour, so you're
moving somewhat slowly slowly
enough that you have a chance to look
around. That's when you notice a store-
front business you haven't seen before.
Must be new, you think.
The next thought is an important
one: "Maybe I'll check it out this week-
end." Or conversely: "Ugh. No way I'm
going to visit that place it's a dump."
What attracts you during that initial
encounter? What repels you? Chances
are it's the way the business presents
itself, its "face," so to speak.
Enter the City of Miami's "commercial
facade program." This is a city initiative
that's been around for years, but like most
programs of its ilk, it gets little publicity.
Property owners and business proprietors
learn about it mainly by word-of-mouth.

Put On a Happy Face
With a little help from the city, MiMo can dazzle us once as

The idea behind the program is to
stimulate economic activity by putting on
the happy, inviting face that prompts you to
think, "Yes, I'll stop by this weekend." It's
common sense, really. A place whose public
facade appears menacing or even just
neglected will not attract the curious cus-
tomer who'll never discover what treasures or
professional services lie just beyond the door.
Miami's facade program can provide
pressure cleaning and painting, awnings,

doors, showcase windows, signage, and
security shutters or impact glass for
qualified businesses. How much funding
are we talking about? Up to $10,000 per
business is available on a sliding scale
of participation by the business owner.
For instance, a grant of between $5000
and $10,000 would require the business
to kick in 15 percent ($1500 for a full
$10,000 grant), with the city funding
the other 85 percent ($8500). Not a bad

return on investment!
And what are the rules for participat-
ing? First, the business must be located
in the City of Miami and must possess a
valid occupational license and certificate
of use. The business will also have to
supply a current property survey and
proof of flood insurance. In addition, the
business must be located within a census

Continued on page 23

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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009

140 i=1


Happy Face
Continued from page 22

tract designated as financially depressed
or lower-income. The bulk of the MiMo
Historic District (Biscayne Boulevard
between NE 50th and NE 77th streets)
qualifies. The program operates out of
the city manager's office through the
Office of Economic Development, with
direct services being supplied by local
community-based organizations (CBOs),
which are located throughout the city.
For the Upper Eastside, the CBO is the
Rafael Hernandez Housing and Economic
Development Corporation. The contact
person is Henry Mojica, who is the project
manager for the facade program. Henry
can be reached at 305-576-9895 or via
e-mail at hmojica@bellsouth.net.
I can hear the cynics among you saying,
"Great, there's a program, but does anyone
really get any money?" The answer to
that question is a resounding Yes! Thanks
to the efforts of Henry and the MiMo
Biscayne Association, several businesses
in the historic district have already benefited.
Uva 69 received a grant for awnings, Carl's
Motel El Padre received a grant for impact

windows, the South Pacific Motel received
a grant for painting, and the Biscayne Inn
received a grant for a new neon sign. (See
accompanying photos.)
Other local businesses have been
approved and are awaiting funding from
next year's budget. On that list are the
Shalimar Motel for painting; Hiperfit
gym for painting; Casa Toscana for
painting, doors, and signage; Jamboree
for painting, doors, and signage; as well
as Moonchine Asian Bistro for awnings.
Like most good things, however, the
facade program isn't without its detrac-
tors. It appears that our District 2 city
commissioner, Marc Sarnoff, is not
convinced that funding for this program
should continue or continue with the
same sliding scale of participation. I
attended a MiMo Biscayne Association
meeting on the evening of April 15 to
listen to the commissioner present his
position on the program to a group of 17
property and business owners along Bis-
cayne Boulevard in the Upper Eastside.
To say that his comments put a
damper on the groups' hopes would
be an understatement. The commis-
sioner explained that, in general, he

was "philosophically opposed to using
CDBG [Community Development Block
Grants] for facade grants," which is how
the program is funded. He elaborated by
saying, "I have a philosophical problem
with refunding those [businesses] that
have received facadee grants] already
in the past four years, and using public
money on a private building."
Lest anyone misunderstand, he
reiterated his position: "I've never been a
fan of he facade program I don't think
it's a proper use of [community develop-
ment] money." When asked by attendees
how he intends to spend CDBG money
next fiscal year, the commissioner
replied that he was "inclined" to fund
projects dealing with children. "When
the competition [for money] comes down
to children or something else," he said,
"I will support the children." Before the
meeting ended, however, he wavered
between "I'm not sure what I'm going to
do" and "I've decided to fund [the facade
program] at a lower level than before."
Recently, in response to a letter he
received from one of the historic district busi-
nesses extolling the virtues of the program,
he forwarded the e-mail to city staff with the

following comment: "I am not familiar with
this program what can you tell me about
it?" (You'd hope that, after two and a half
years in office, the commissioner would have
heard from city staff about the program's
benefits. His four colleagues on the commis-
sion all support it.)
In light of the uncertainty over the
facade program's future in District 2, I
suggest that those of you who'd like
to see it continue especially those
of you who've already been approved
for funding contact Commissioner
Sarnoff and present your case in hopes
of persuading him to keep it going, and
to maintain the existing formula for par-
ticipation. This is one city program that
really works. It's an integral part of the
MiMo Historic District's efforts to re-
capture the relevance it once had, when
the area was an attraction for thousands
of travelers along U.S. 1. It can be that
again with a little help from the city.

Contact Commissioner Sarnoff at his
city hall office (305-250-5333) or via
e-mail r.,rini ffiTa mini iov.com)

Feedback: letterst@biscaynetimes.com

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May 2009

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com



By Wendy Doscher-Smith
BT Contributor
The Friday morning when 14 people
were shot dead just blocks from
my house in Binghamton, New
York, was typical of early April, a.k.a.
The Spring Lie. Which is to say that
outside the many large windows of my
home, the weather was about as cheery
as a proctology exam.
When we bought this house, the win-
dows were a draw. However, all I've wanted
to do for months now is draw some heavy
curtains over them, shutting out the funereal
skies. I'd also shut out the roar of the buses
and the neighbor's howling dog. The poor
beagle is on a tie-out, the owners leaving him
out each night until they retire. Cruel and
stupid behavior to inflict on a dog.
But let's step back to a time before
the eight-month winter here in South
Alaska transformed me into a grumpy,
miserable prick I don't even recognize.
It was late summer, and the Vitamin

SSkies, Cold Rain, and
Memories ofa massacre too close to home


D-Deficient Darkness that burrowed
inside me was only in the amoebic stage.
Back then, the windows seemed lovely,
and I knew not of the helpless dog and
rumbling buses.
My husband and I chose to live in the
West Side neighborhood of Binghamton

because of its beautiful Victorian homes
and its proximity to downtown. While
house hunting, we considered surround-
ing areas, including a suburb called
Vestal, though I quickly dismissed it as
a bit too Stepford for me. Besides the
lovely homes, there are maybe five other


Things I like about living here. One of
.) them is the cultural diversity.
Growing up in Miami, as a non-
: practicing Jew, I had an identity crisis. I
Related more to the Cuban community.
. In Binghamton there are many cultures
.Z that are radically different, from Greek
Orthodox to Ukrainian, Italian to Protes-
tant. The very presence of the Southern
Tier Melting Pot made me feel a little
less homesick.
For me, living in Miami and moving to
Binghamton was like eating Cap'n Crunch
Berries your whole life and then switching
to All Bran. I needed some Fruit Loops,
Frosted Flakes, and Sugar Pops. In the
various cultures, I found my fix. After all,
Binghamton was crowned the "Capital of
the Pierogy Pocket" by Mrs. T's pierogies.
Just down the street from our house is the
Euro-Mart, run by an older Ukrainian
woman in a floral apron. The inventory,
including strange chocolates, uncovered

Continued on page 25


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May 2009


Dark Skies
Continued from page 24

baked goods, and dried-up sardines, made
me feel oddly at home.
Johnson City, which is minutes away
and is one of the "Triple Cities" that
also includes Binghamton and Endicott,
is home to many Ukrainians as well as
Asians. The American Civic Association
shooter, Jiverly Wong, lived there. His
13 victims hailed from eight different
I know the American Civic Associa-
tion building, but the day of the shoot-
ings it took me a second to figure where
it was. Since I'm a photographer, the
Binghamton architecture, with its decay-
ing iron and filthy brick, appeals to me.
Still, of all the hundreds pictures I've
shot, none are of that building. Archi-
tecturally, the ACA structure is nothing
special. Now, of course, the whole world
knows what it looks like.
When the news broke about some
kind of shooting, I figured it involved an
argument between two drunken town-
ies over who bagged a 14-pointer during
hunting season. (Translation: the number

of antlers on a deer.) Jeremy sent an
e-mail warning me to avoid downtown.
I almost dismissed it. I was supposed to
go downtown to get an enlargement of
a picture made for a client. But I imag-
ined the local cops would be all flustered
about this shooting, whatever it was, and
I'd get stuck in traffic. So I decided to do
it another time.
Instead I headed for Vestal, a few
minutes away, for a photo shoot. On the
way, I got a text from a friend who works
at NBC in Miami asking about the shoot-
ing. I thought that was weird as she never
texts me. Then I got a call from another
friend in Miami. Weird again, as she
didn't usually call. I dismissed it as well.
It wasn't until 20 minutes later, when I
called her back and then got to a televi-
sion, that I realized this wasn't some
routine, boozy gunplay.
Stories of random shootings and mul-
tiple deaths are always shocking. When it
happens blocks from your house, in a small
community, it's downright fantastical.
When it happens and you are a journalist
who lives in the locale, it is uncanny.
My immediate reaction was to race
back to Binghamton and cover the story.

At that point, about 1:00 p.m., the entire
city was on lockdown. Binghamton High
School is practically across the street from
the American Civic Association. Countless
times I've driven by those kids all bundled-
up as they wait after school for city buses
to take them to the mall or home or wher-
ever freezing high-schoolers go.
As a journalist, I also knew that the
ACA itself was probably on bigger lock-
down than the city. I felt at once neutered
and elated. I could walk there from my
house. I could dodge anyone I had to, or
sneak in anywhere I had to in order to
take pictures. I had done it before.
But I stayed at my friend's house in
Vestal, transfixed before the television,
watching the whole thing unfold on
international news. I had done the photo
shoot there I intended to do, and lingered
long afterward.
Thing is, as hard as I have tried to
fight being a part of this community, I
think I finally felt a connection that day.
Maybe it was because I've spent many
hours on the streets outside the massacre
site, my camera in tow. Maybe it was be-
cause I bought a pair of eyeglass frames
across the street from the ACA, or that I

take that left turn on Front Street off of
Main Street almost daily.
Later that night it rained. The bridge
into the city was jammed with satellite news
trucks. The American Civic Association was
still yellow-taped. We drove by the service
held at the church near the scene.
Yet for all the insanity of the day, it was
still just early April in Binghamton And with
the heavy rain came the worms never one
of my favorites. (As a kid in Miami, I refused
to leave the house when they emerged, and
here, years later, I'm no different. I had to be
piggybacked to the car.)
But the worms are a sign of new
beginnings. And even as I cringed at the
sight of them, I knew they meant spring
had arrived. I hoped the worms marked
new beginnings for the victims' fami-
lies, as well as for Wong's family. They
also suffered a loss, and deserved our
thoughts and prayers.
For a moment, as a bus whooshed
by and the neighbor's beagle howled,
all felt normal in Binghamton. And for
that, on the third day of April 2009, I
was grateful.

Feedback: letters(@biscaynetimes.com


7 E 'It 110TIL~wd

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May 2009

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Fort Knox Redefined

vefinally brought home one too many Picassos. Now what?

By Anne Tschida
Special to BT

he entry to Museo Vault is flanked
by two small but sleek art galler-
ies, with floor-to-ceiling windows
facing NW 29th Street. Inside one are
sculptures made from old drive-in movie
speakers, staplers, radio parts. Viewed
in this nicely air-conditioned space, the
exhibit "Rocket Man" is pretty cool all
around. It turns out to be a prescient pre-
view to what stands behind the tightly
sealed doors of the Vault.
The Museo Vault, opened this past
November, is an art storage, services, and
shipping facility. But that makes it sound
prosaic. Unlike the intentionally retro
"Rocket Man" in the front annex, this
place is truly space-age.
After handing over ID to security, the
first of many thick, heavily video-monitored
doors opens, revealing five floors and
86,000-square-feet of state-of-the-art every-
thing, or so it seems. There's the handsome
and expertly lit viewing room, where collec-
tors, artists, and museum curators can show
guests artwork in a posh setting. There's the
security-intense loading dock and also the
crating and packing center, where craftsmen
build customized shipping containers and
insulated casings. Upstairs: color-coordinated
storage and office rooms, and hanging panel
spaces. The whole building is cocooned by
a hyper climate- and humidity-controlled
system, and happens to sit on some of the
highest land in Miami.
That, at least, is according to the proj-
ect's founder and owner David Lombardi,
a prominent developer in the Wynwood
arts district. The elevation of the property
is an extra bonus here in flood-prone
hurricane alley, Lombardi points out as
he maneuvers another high-tech entry
into another part of the Vault. In fact all
of this techno-gadgetry has a distinct
purpose and makes a distinct statement:
This is a unique art-services center, and it
was built in Miami for a reason.
We have growing art collections and
galleries, with increasingly important
and expensive work, and handling all of
it should not be left to amateurs, espe-
cially on this southern tip of Florida. That
would be the thinking behind the $10
million facility for Lombardi, whose
Wynwood Lofts were some of the first
spaces built specifically for artists and

David Lombardi's new venture carries a message: In the art
world, Miami is now on the map.

artist studios, and which he says are now
all occupied.
Lombardi explains how humidity and
water are the worst enemies of art; so the
humidity inside Museo Vault is constant-
ly monitored with 50 sensors, and water
sprinklers will only activate in very tar-
geted areas in case of fire. The lights are
covered in UV protection sleeves, and
the entire building has a back-up power
system to keep those climate and security
controls running even if a dreaded hur-
ricane should hit. Says Lombardi: "It pro-
vides a [new]
infrasru r All this techno-
for Miami."
That distinct purpose an
safety struc- statement: This is a
ture is espe- center, and it was
cially neces- a rea
sary here
in Florida,
according to Jane Hart, curator of ex-
hibitions at the Art and Culture Center
Hollywood. "Even compared to a simi-
lar place like L.A., our humidity and
salt are brutal here," she says. "Serious
collectors need a serious storage space."
Hart points out that as household col-
lections have grown along with the
status of art, "people have more stuff in
their homes than they can handle. It's
become popular to rotate your collec-
tion, and it is now very important to
safely store what you are not showing."


There's more to the facility than doors
and climate, says a proud Lombardi on this
hot spring afternoon. "We have the best
people providing the services." Almost
on cue, Alan Myers, the fine arts collec-
tion manager, steps out of an elevator. He
had served a 17-year stint at the Whitney
Museum in New York before coming to
Miami. Lombardi remarks that Myers had
just changed the protective plastic covering
on a painting, and Myers explains that leav-
ing it on too long can cause harm. He gets
very personal with the art, even visiting a
collector's home
first to get to
adgetry has a know it and
I makes a distinct then"figure
unique art-services out the best
built in Miami for way to store it."
;on. Hands-on
care extends
to the crating
and shipping side of the business as
well. There are legion shipping disaster
tales, of art arriving late for an opening,
and worse, arriving damaged or half
dismantled. And packaging contempo-
rary art is no small task pieces can
include room-size installations, deli-
cate rice paper, glass sculptures. From
the back of the huge crating room, one
carpenter remembers trying to transport
an enormous metal sculpture from the
artist Britto, which he said eventually
had to involve forklifts.

, Security measures at the Vault
Include confidentiality about what art is
Already in storage and who owns it -
1 Lombardi and his staff don't want to give
potential thieves any extra information.
SBut a major Miami collector, Dennis
Scholl, doesn't have to follow a similar
vow of silence. He was recently named
Miami program director for the Knight
Foundation, which includes leading the
$40 million Knight Arts Challenge; and
parts of the collection he created with
his wife Debra currently are showing in
an exhibition at the Frost Art Museum
at FIU. "I can't imagine a better place to
have important objects if you want them
protected," he says. "The space is world-
class well thought out, organized,
and ready to handle almost any kind of
art object. It's a dramatic upgrade from
existing facilities."
But while many seem to agree there
is a need for such up-to-date services,
even Lombardi acknowledges the
timing might be off. "Unfortunately,"
he says, "we opened just as the reces-
sion hit the art market." The occupancy
rate is not nearly as high as he had
hoped at this point, and they are not
running at full capacity in terms of ser-
vices, "but we'll wait it through, like
everyone else."
A potential client arrives to take a
tour. If Lombardi's dream succeeds, the
client might be one who catalogues his
collection using the viewing room as
camera-ready documenting space, and in
the future will log-on on the Vault's se-
cured Website to check out his artworks,
or show them to others, maybe while
he's in Paris.
"It is a high-quality project, and any-
thing of high quality gets high marks from
me," says Michelle Weinberg, local artist
and director of the Girls' Club, a private art
foundation and alternative art space. "But
obviously the economy at this moment
may make it a challenge to launch."
Scholl says that Museo Vault's pres-
ence means more than merely additional
storage space: "This concept is another
statement about Miami's position as an
important city in the art world. We're one
of the largest collecting cities in America
now. It's an amazing facility, and I do
hope they do well."

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May 2009


A School Is Born

By Margaret Griffis
Special to BT

After summer vacation, when
the lights switch on again at
Miami-Dade public schools
this August, several hundred lucky
students will have a new school in
the Design District to call their own.
Instead of stuffing the usual pencils and
notebooks into their backpacks, though,
these kids will also carry paint brushes
and ballerina slippers to classes at the
Miami Arts Charter School, which will
occupy the former Channel 10 studios
at 3900 Biscayne Blvd.
Miami Arts Charter, or MAC, is the
latest charter school to open in the county.
Founded by husband and wife educa-
tional team Alfredo and Christine de la
Rosa, MAC will provide the conven-
tional middle- and high-school learning
experience, but it will also offer students
an unparalleled opportunity to develop

ing to the neighborhood: A dream called Miami Arts Charter

Alfredo and Christine de la Rosa had a vision: A arts program forever
protected from budget cuts.

their creative skills. Even as other public
schools see their arts and music budgets
dwindling dramatically, visual artists,

dancers, actors, musicians, and creative
writers will find a nurturing environment
at this new campus.

This focus on the arts is possible
Thanks to a relatively new educational
Movement that blossomed in the
S1990s. Basically, charter schools are
autonomous public schools, licensed
. and monitored by Miami-Dade County
SPublic Schools officials. Like the stan-
dard version, the charters are open to all
children living within the county, their
students pay no tuition, and they receive
local, state, and federal tax dollars for
their operating expenses. Unlike most
public schools, however, charters are not
constrained by attendance boundaries;
They can accept students living anywhere
Sin the state.
In 1996 the first charter schools ap-
* peared in Florida; today more than 70 are
operating in Miami-Dade County alone.
The main difference between charter and
standard public schools is that decision-
making, beyond that which is prescribed
Continued on page 29

Low Turnout but High Hopes
Political newcomer Donald Shockey sails to victory in Miami Shores

By Mark Sell
Special to BT

Miami Shores prides itself on
being Mayberry in the hood.
Twenty minutes from down-
town, five minutes from Little Haiti,
seven minutes from Liberty City, ten
minutes from the beaches this verdant,
closely knit village of 10,000 has the
good sense to get its rest. Conveying that
impression of restfulness and insularity
takes work: a dedicated management and
elected council, a friendly and alert con-
stabulary, efficient public works, tough
zoning, persnickety code enforcement, a
dense social network, municipal taxes, a
decent budget, and just a touch of the old
NIMBY syndrome (not in my backyard).
The April 14 Village Council election
nudged the village awake with a surprise:
the strong second-place finish of relative
political newcomer and new vice mayor
Donald Shockey, a 51-year-old urban
planner and self-styled change agent. (He
served from 2002 to 2004 on the Planning
and Zoning Board, where he was known
as equable in his dealings and passionate

about landscaping and aesthetics.)
Evidently a good portion of the 19
percent of the electorate (1308) who
actually did show up to vote for the
three open slots on the village council
were ready to mix it up. Judging from
the "bullet voting," in which voters se-
lected just one candidate instead of the
allotted three, some of them voted for
Shockey to the exclusion of the others,
as if to mix things up a little more.
"People see the village as being old-
fashioned, which has its advantages and Do
disadvantages," Shockey said in a post- ye
election interview. "There is a general mi
feeling that new blood can't hurt. There's
a feeling that decisions are made, if not
behind closed doors, at least behind doors not
as open as they could be. So this candidacy
was about being more inclusive, getting more
people involved. Sustainability is also huge."
Shockey (690 votes) came in just
behind Al Davis (724 votes), who is now
mayor for the third time. Both will serve
four-year terms. Incumbent Councilman
Prospero Herrera II (675 votes) won a
two-year term, and knocked out highly
regarded incumbent Hunt Davis (Al's


maid Shockey: For one dollar per
ar, he'll now grapple with some
Ilion-dollar problems.

nephew, with 619 votes) and second-time
contender Eddie Lewis (361 votes).
Shockey, Herrera, and Al Davis will
join incumbents and village mainstays
Steve Loffredo, an attorney, Herta Holly,
a school administrator. Village manager
Tom Benton, a 37-year employee who
rose through the ranks, will remain.
"I was surprised that Hunt Davis
didn't make it back in," said Robert
Bourne, a prominent local Realtor and
major contributor of time and treasure to

public schools and local civic causes. "I
was not surprised that Donald Shockey
won, but I was surprised that the election
got so close. And I was disappointed at
how few people voted."
Hunt Davis put his Vanderbilt MBA
and experience running a small business
to use in his two years on the council,
mastering the budget, embracing Doctors
Charter School, and mud-wrestling with
the Florida Legislature on the village's
behalf. He's just 39 years old, so no one
expects him to disappear.
At any rate, change is coming on the
council, but as poet Carl Sandburg
once said of frost on cat feet. Shockey
is but one vote in five in a weak-mayor/
strong manager government, and he
needs to get his bearings among four
seasoned colleagues.
Once he does get his bearings, expect
Shockey to push for more inclusiveness
and citizen participation, greater Internet
access and transparency in the village's
dealings. He's also expected to champion
Doctors Charter School and to advocate

Continued on page 28

May 2009Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


Continued from page 27
for various "green," "sustainable," and
volunteer initiatives that bring people
together and do not cost money.
He could create waves if not win
votes by favoring an FEC passenger
rail station at 87th Street, near Tropical
Chevrolet, or raising the issue of term
limits for the two boards with binding
authority: planning and zoning and code
enforcement. More broadly, expect greater
outreach to neighboring governments and
the county.
The immediate fiscal challenges
are brutal: a shattered economy; deci-
mated jobs and attendant foreclosures; a
crippled housing market (unsold inven-
tories are down to 165 from 234 a year
ago, but prices are still falling); groaning
and intractable pension costs; slashed
revenue-sharing from the state; and
lower property values and tax revenues.
The result is a pinched budget ($11.9
million, down $500,000 from last year),
higher millage ($7.63 per $1000 assessed

Continued on page 29

I .

SMiami Shores
.. (precinct 154)

I 156

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Irrame a

voter precincts: Turnout ranged from 7%
Ito 29% (precinct 157).



,--N. ,. DW

i 179

/ 157



- 5- 4 -7 -- Alex Saa 305-405-8712
Biscayn Tie ww.icyeiero Ma 20

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009


Continued from page 27
by law, occurs entirely within the school
As founder and executive direc-
tor, Alfredo de la Rosa explains, "The
thing that drove me the most is that I
built several good [arts] programs over
the years, and large systems and bu-
reaucracies being what they are, they
tend to have a decision-making process
that doesn't always jibe with what any
particular teacher is trying to do. The arts
are frequently the first things to go. I just
wanted to make sure that I don't continue

to build programs for kids that eventually,
for whatever reason financial, political,
or whatever end up being done away
with. The only way to ensure that is to
have control."
De la Rosa has worked as a public-
school educator for more than 20 years,
is nationally board-certified, and has
launched a number of magnet schools
already, so he has plenty of experience
to guide him in this ambitious under-
taking. He grew up in the Miami-Dade
public school system, and would even
ride his bike by the Channel 10 studios to
class. "I never thought I'd open a school

there," he laughs. "Having a school like
Miami Arts in the neighborhood benefits
everybody. We'll be producing the artists
and musicians and writers and painters
of the future, who are going to ultimately
stay here in Miami and contribute back
to the arts community, or move on to
the professional world as better people,
better professionals overall, because of
the discipline they'll be learning."
As for those Channel 10 studios,
the serendipitous relocation of WPLG
to Pembroke Park in March not only
opened the door to MAC, it provided
the school with a landmark building

that was already geared to high-quality
arts production. Among other benefits,
large interior open spaces will turn into
rehearsal halls, while soundproof editing
bays will become practice rooms.
MAC will be leasing the building
from 3900 Biscayne LLC, an invest-
ment group that includes Miami architect
Kobi Karp, who is known not only for
his innovative designs but also for his
commitment to preservation and green
technologies. His architecture company
is very active in remodeling the facility

Continued on page 31

Continued from page 28
valuation, up from $7.14), and the threat
of higher fees for strapped families.
So with all this, why would anyone
want a tough job on the village council for
a buck a year? "You have to have service in
your blood," Bourne observed. "Candidates
don't do this for fame or fortune. And they
want to keep it going in the right direction."

(Bourne is on to something. Miami Shores
commands fierce loyalty and a deep tradi-
tion of civic service.)
Shockey, trim and gray-haired, had
strong support from the gay and profes-
sional communities, which put him just
34 votes behind 60-year-resident Al
Davis, the florid, rotund, blunt-talking
son of Alabama who calls the village
"Mahmuh Shores." At age 69 he was
elected mayor for an unprecedented third

time about as close to Mayor for Life
as the village charter allows.
The elder Davis is a conservative
Republican but defies red-blue stereo-
types. Flinty with public money, he is
committed to preserving the A-rated but
cash-strapped charter school, which has
kept many families from fleeing the vil-
lage over schools. Davis's fans are spread
among the old guard, liberal professional
types, and Miami Shores's influential

gay community. In fact, Shockey, Al
Davis, and Hunt Davis were endorsed by
SAVE-Dade, the gay-lesbian-transgender
advocacy group.
As an election force, the gay commu-
nity has come into its own as a significant
minority, with a disproportionate share
of voters and contributors. Some may be
surprised to learn that Miami Shores has

Continued on page 30

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Continued from page 29

the sixth-highest concentration of same-
sex couples in the United States. Prov-
incetown, Massachusetts, is number one;
Wilton Manors in Broward is number
four; and Key West is behind the Shores
at number eight.
Shockey owes his victory to more
than voters' desire for change. Even
though he didn't decide to run until five

Shockey: "There's a feeling th
decisions are made, if not behi
closed doors, at least behind doo
as open as they could be."

weeks before the election, he says he
managed to raise just over $2000, about
average for a council candidate. Yard
signs sprouted like dandelions right at
the end, following door-to-door cam-
paigning, detailed position papers, and
endorsements and phone-bank calls from
the Democratic Party and SAVE-Dade.

(The involvement of a political party in
such a nonpartisan election is rare but has
happened before. The Republican Party
supported Karen Kirby for Miami Shores
council in 1985; she was elected mayor.
Shockey is a staunch Democrat.)
Candidate Shockey also benefited
from the organizational skill of marketing
veteran and entrepreneur Bob Domlesky,
who advocates "green and sustainable"
initiatives and signed on three weeks
before the election because he wanted
to jolt the village from its
at The electorate if
ind narrow -is highly educated,
rs not and the population markedly
more diverse than its apparent
leadership. Roughly one in four
households is African-Amer-
ican, nearly 14 percent West
Indian, 22 percent Hispanic, and 48 percent
non-Hispanic white.
Miami Shores also trends blue, and slight-
ly young, with an average age of 37. All eight
precincts in Miami Shores went for Obama
this past November, averaging roughly 70
percent. That varied from 57 percent in pre-
cinct 157 to 83 percent in precinct 154.

.m "-,, Sh r pr.,. 1 ,,. Gen l .

Registered Voters Total 6,870
Ballots Cast Total 1,306

Voter Turnout Total 19.01%
V C Votes %

Al Davis 724
Hunt Davis 619
Prospero Guillermo Herrera, II 675
Eddie Lewis 361
Donald P. Shockey 690

When the time came to celebrate the
three winners at the Miami Shores Country
Club onApril 21, many of the usual suspects
turned out a combination ofbluebloods
with lime-green blazers and white shoes, gay
worthies exchanging kisses and "darlings,"
and newcomers taking in the scene. Marcy
Orth, a Shockey backer who sets up on-loca-
tion production shoots, was bemused.
"Look at this crowd," she said. "You
honestly think this reflects the Shores? I go
door-to-door to set up shoots, and we know


Miami Shores looks different from this.
Look, I have nothing against marshmal-
low drops and Christmas tree lightings, but
people have all kinds of belief systems
and can always feel more included. You
could have all kinds of community events
bringing people together and they don't
need to cost money. We can get creative.
I'm ready for change, and I think that's
what Shockey represents."

Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com

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May 2009


Continued from page 29

as a school. Says de la Rosa: "We're very
fortunate to have run into them, because
it really is a big helping hand to have
such expertise onboard."
Another mutual advantage to the
community will be MAC's links to the
University of Miami's Frost School of
Music, which de la Rosa calls "among
the best in the world." The dean of the
Frost School, Shelton Berg, sits on the
MAC governing board. "At a time of
cutbacks," says Berg, "I think it's really
important for something as essential as
music and art that this school is starting.
Music has never been more important
to people than it is now. It's ingrained
in everyone's life, and it's part of what
weaves us together as a society. When
it's cut from education, I think there's no
regard for just how essential it is to the
human experience. I call it the 'mortar of
humanity' because it really is."
MAC will have its normal retinue
of accredited teachers, but through the
Frost School, students will have access to
broader educational opportunities. Berg

elaborates: "Because we're such a great will have. De la Rosa re
resource of talent, [MAC] is hiring some them competition and b
of our students [for tutoring and other schools complement ea
instruction], and I think even some of are so many Miami-Dac
our part-time faculty to do some teach- are interested in the arts
ing there, which means instruction will learned at MAC could h
be at a very high level." The relationship school students get into
between MAC and UM is still its early DASH if that's the path
stages, Berg adds, and will develop and MAC will, however, s
define itself
over time.
Two other "I just wanted to make sure that I don't
public schools continue to build programs for kids that
offering an eventually, for whatever reason, end up
arts curricu- being done away with."
lum are practi-
cally neigh-
bors: Design
and Architecture Senior High (DASH) at MAC. If they are enroll
is just across the railroad tracks from the sixth-grade level, they
MAC, and the New World School of the interview to determine iftl
Arts is nearby in downtown Miami. Both fit for them. As they mature
schools serve 9th through 12th grades will have the opportunity t
(New World also features a college cific programs and enseml
component), and both are magnet schools complete their core acadei
within the Miami-Dade County Public Yes, just because M
Schools system. Being magnet schools, charter school doesn't n
as opposed to charters, means they don't won't receive a rigorous
enjoy the same level of autonomy MAC math, science, social sti

sists calling
believes the three
ch other as there
le students who
. In fact, skills
lelp middle-
New World or
they wish to take.
screen prospective
Students much
the same way
as New World
and DASH.
Children will
be required
to apply and
possibly audi-
tion for a spot
ing as beginners at
will go through an
he school is the best
e as artists, they
o audition for spe-
bles, or to simply
nic studies.
AC is an "arts"
lean students
Education in
dies, and the

language arts. Nor will they get out of
those dreaded PE. classes. The academic
program will operate within Florida's
"Next Generation Sunshine State Stan-
dards," and the school will eventually
seek accreditation through the Southern
Association of Colleges and Schools.
So what has been the most difficult
part of creating a brand-new school? De
la Rosa doesn't hesitate with an answer:
real estate. It took nearly two years, he
says, to find an appropriate location for
the middle and high school, and he still
hasn't found a building to house what
will be MAC's already approved elemen-
tary school. So that part of the project
will have to wait until at least the 2010
school year, if not longer.
What he and his wife won't have dif-
ficulty finding is enough talented students
to fill the halls. The school held its first
audition this past March at the University
of Miami. More than 125 students par-
ticipated. Auditions will continue through
July or until there is a waiting list to get
in. Interested students can apply online at
www. miamiartscharter.net.

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May 2009


Biscayne Crime Beat
Compiled by Derek McCann

Revolution No. 9, the
White Album
5400 Block ofNE 1st Court
Police were called to respond to a report
that a woman was being attacked by
a white dude with dreadlocks. The
suspect repeatedly tried to enter the
apartment and, according to police,
at one point threatened: "Bitch, I'm
going to get you. Stop fucking with my
family; you poured bleach on yourself."
The bleach refers to another report filed
earlier in the day by the same victim,
who claimed someone threw bleach
at her face. (Two police reports in the
same day hey, doesn't everyone do
this on their day off?) When detectives
came the next day to investigate, they
were told that the apartment where the
incident occurred, No. 9, does not exist.
The owner, who has since foreclosed
on the property, has never heard of the
victim. Nevertheless, a letter will be
sent to the phantom apartment.

Tough Economy:
Businesswoman Adds
Burglary to Her R6sum6
2200 Block oj :, ,. i Boulevard
Man observed a petite woman with
long, shoulder-length red hair wearing
a black suit jacket and matching pants.
To complete the downtown professional

look, she was carrying a black briefcase.
Appearances aside, the observer was
about to witness a crime. The woman
was let into his neighbor's apartment by
a mysterious man who had no authoriza-
tion to be there as the neighbor was on
vacation. The apartment was ransacked
(closet doors removed and clothes strewn
about) and several pieces of jewelry

were stolen. The front door lock had
been completely cut off. The woman left
calmly carrying the same brief case with
her obedient accomplice at her side. A
perimeter was set up but no arrests were
made, despite the detailed description of
the woman in black.

Worst-Case Scenario
100 Block ofNE 68th Terrace
This victim came home to find his
ex-boyfriend in the kitchen. The ex
was not supposed to be there, but the
victim never changed the security code
to the apartment. This was not to be
a pleasant rendezvous. The ex-flame
grabbed the victim by the hair and
screamed, "I'm going to kill your ass!"
He punched the victim several times
in the face, then grabbed a knife and
forced himself on the victim. This hor-
rific ordeal lasted close to two hours,
until the victim was finally able to
Continued on page 33

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May 2009


Crime Beat
Continued from page 32
escape and call police. Think slow and
hard Miamians: Is your future ex likely
to do something similar?

Upgrade that Security
700 Block NE 62nd Street
A man left his condo's sliding door
unlocked, but used a wooden stick to
keep it shut. Security was on duty, so
the man was not worried. He left for
several hours, but returned to find his
condo burglarized. Many items were
missing, including his trusty wooden
stick. This is the second incident in
two weeks at this location. Time for an
iron stick?

Frustrated Salesman?
100 Block NE 69th Street
Answering the door, no matter where
you are, can be dangerous. A man
opened his door in response to a friendly
knock and was promptly stabbed ten
times. The knife-wielding nutcase ran

away and the victim was hospitalized.
He has recovered.

Clothing Store Hit
7400 Block ofBiscayne Boulevard
Owner secured her business on a Sunday
morning at 11:00 a.m. The next day,
when she returned, it was obvious some-
thing was very wrong. The front door
was ajar and approximately $30,000
in items had been taken from the store.
The angles of the security cameras were
smartly shifted so there was no video
evidence of the perps at work.

Give Me Your Tired, Your
Poor, Your Distracted
Waiting for the bus after a long, hard day
of work, a woman inadvertently left her
purse at the busy Omni bus stop, Bis-
cayne and NE 14th Street. She realized
this only after riding on the bus for sev-
eral minutes. In a panic, the poor woman
returned. Of course the purse was gone.
A witness saw a man take it. This being
Miami, the man did not turn it in to lost
and found.

Okay, Then Just Give Me
Your Dog
Belle Meade
A man was walking his dog, Coco, when
he was approached by a seedy couple
asking for directions. Their destination
was impossible to discern, and the dog-
walker was unable to help. This angered
the twosome, who demanded the man
sell them his dog for $400. The man
refused, so the pair simply grabbed the
dog and fled in a waiting car.

Man's Bling Gets Pinged
100 Block ofNE 11th Street
A manwas in his carwhen a woman unknown
to him opened his passenger door and took a
seat next to him The man latertold police: "She
was attractive, so I did not want to kick her out"
A few seconds later, anotherwoman arrived
and sat in the back seat Finally a third woman
showed up. She actually opened the driver's
door and sat on his lap. Ready for a wild
adventure, the man asked them if they wanted
to spend the night at a respectable Boulevard
motel. Insulted, they promptly stole his Rolex
watch and ran off. The man flagged down
police in the area, but the women got away.

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Laundry Hell
2000 Block ofN. Bayshore Drive
A woman was washing her clothes in
her condo's tenth-floor laundry facility.
While her garments were in the dryer,
she left the laundry room. When she re-
turned to retrieve them, the clothes were
gone. No witnesses or fashion clones
have been found.

Plug in an Extension Cord,
Go to Jail
200 Block ofNE 62nd Street
During hurricanes, neighbors gladly
shared their generators with others.
Not now! A woman called police to
complain about a neighbor who was
possibly stealing her electricity. Police
discovered an extension cord running
from her apartment to his. The neigh-
bor admitted he had been stealing her
electricity, He was promptly arrested.
Question: Why didn't the woman
simply unplug the extension cord?
Answer: We'll never know.

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W h en it comes to Miami art,
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gathering of people than at
Art Basel Miami Beach. Thousands flock
from disparate parts of globe each year
to buy, sell, and appreciate art. Last year
alone the fair attracted roughly 60,000
visitors, with 250 galleries and some
2000 artists participating. The impact
of this spreads far beyond the confines
of the Miami Beach Convention Center,
with dozens of other events orbiting
around Basel involving hundreds more
galleries and thousands more artists.
"It's a major point of focus in the
city," says Ruba Katrib, assistant curator
at North Miami's Museum of Contem-
porary Art (MOCA). But Art Basel is
only one of many major fairs that have
taken the art world by storm in recent
years, and they have radically shifted its
traditional practices. "I felt there wasn't
enough examination of this event and its
impact on the city," Katrib continues. "I
felt it would be important to address it in
some way."
That was her inspiration for creat-
ing "Convention," the upcoming show at
MOCA, in which more than 15 interna-
tional artists investigate the significance
of art fairs, as well as festivals (art or
otherwise), expos, conventions, and other
large-scale public events. "The show is
really think-
ing about this
sort of mode Haeg selected Keit
of gathering," Mindy Nelson, and
Katrib says. their living room, th
"It's not a
"It's not a of which he has re<
show that has
such defined
The works, she says, are split between
more traditional, object-based works
and works that are more situational or
participatory in nature. Ultimately, it is
an exhibition that explores the nature of
human interaction.
The most ambitious participa-
tory project of "Convention" is by Los
Angeles artist Fritz Haeg, whose work
commonly deals with the social relation-
ships among people. The project has its
roots in a previous work titled Sundown
Salon, in which Haeg, from 2001 to

Keith Waddington and Mindy Nelson will host events at their home, not at MOCA.


2006, hosted in his own home a series
of events performances, improvised
happenings involving people from his
local community.
This time Haeg has selected a Coral
Gables couple, Keith Waddington and
Mindy Nelson, and will be transforming
their living room into a salonlike gather-
ing space in which the couple will host
their own events for their own commu-
nity. According to Haeg, it's completely
up to Wadding-
ton and Nelson
Waddington and to decide what
has transformed kind of events
current contents they'd like to
host. In the
arranged at MOCA. ht he
the current
contents of the
couple's living room are being removed
and arranged within the museum by
Haeg. As the exhibition unfurls, docu-
mentation of the various events at their
Coral Gables home will appear in the
museum. You'll find a bulletin board
with photographs, and a video-screen
showing footage of these events, as well
as interviews with the couple.
Waddington and Nelson were chosen
from a long list of local residents who
volunteered to take part in Haeg's proj-
ect. Waddington is a professor of biology

Dave McKenzie's It's a Date ballot box: He'll take you out to dinner and
then who knows?

at University of Miami, while Nelson
is an ecologist and animal behavior-
ist currently working on contract with
the National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Administration. Neither is significantly
involved in the art world, which is how
Haeg wanted it. As he puts it, he looked
specifically for "people who are creative
but are not artists." Their events will be
invitation-only affairs, and only as public
as the couple chooses to make them.

Most museum visitors will be unable to
experience firsthand the situation that Haeg
has created in the Coral Gables household.
The fact that the project takes place pre-
dominantly outside of the confines of the
museum serves to raise questions about the
role of the institution itself.
New York performance artist Xavier
Cha is presenting her work called

Continued on page 35

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com May 2009

By Victor Barrenechea
BT Contributor

Ultimately It's All About People

- A new show at MOCA may prompt you to ask: Why is that considered art? -

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009



Continued from page 34
Rehearsal Space, which similarly chal-
lenges the conventions of what can be
- or should be shown in a museum.
Cha's project consists of a 20-foot by 30-
foot wooden dance floor that will serve
as an active rehearsal space for local
choreographers and dance companies to
develop and practice their routines.
Already 20 dance companies and
choreographers have booked the space
(and the museum is still looking for more
volunteers to participate in the project).
Cha points out the apparent shortage
of practice spaces in the Miami area,
making this something of an altruistic
gesture toward the local dance communi-
ty. "I'm just basically creating a space for
dancers to rehearse," says Cha. "I wanted
to open up the museum to people who
wouldn't have access to that space."
By creating a situation in which a
variety of people utilize the space, Cha
calls into question not only the kind of
work that can be displayed in a museum,
but also the kind of people who have
access to such facilities. Another inter-
esting aspect of the work is that, at any

given moment, a visitor could
step into the museum and find
the rehearsal space empty. Cha
has created the possibility for
an event that the viewer may
never experience.
The same concept plays
heavily in New York artist
Dave McKenzie's work It's a
Date. This is the fourth time
McKenzie has presented Date.
The only object on display is
a ballot box. Visitors fill out
ballots with their name and
contact information and place Sean R
them in the box. Near the end and Po
of the exhibition's run, McK- conduit
enzie will choose at random a
name from the box and take that person
to dinner. Says McKenzie: "For me it's
about the kind of thing that an artwork
could do that we can't maybe do on a
normal basis."
Social conventions dictate that you
can't (usually) just pick a random person
off the streets and invite him or her to
dinner. Yet in a museum setting, people
line up to place their names in the ballot
box for a chance to have dinner with a

... 4 :.M
aspet's Arrangement 38 (Crowds
wer) (detail), vinyl banners, electrical
t, zinc-plated chain, 2009.

total stranger. "The dinners are really
simple," says McKenzie, who pays for
these meals out of his own pocket, not
at the expense of the museum. "I don't
promise to be the wittiest conversational-
ist, or that we're going to fall in love, or
even that we're going to be best friends."
Yet the potential for these scenarios is
implicit in the work.
And while McKenzie takes on social
interaction at a very involved level, other

artists are more detached and direct with
their pieces. Corey McCorkle contrib-
utes an array of carpet samples from
the convention halls of New York City
hotels. Sean Raspet creates carnival-style
banners with various "clip-art" images
printed on them, while local artist Jim
Drain makes sculptures that mimic the
kind of art-fair booth displays you might
come across at an event like Art Basel.
"All the artists," observes curator
Ruba Katrib, "are pretty much dealing
with the language and aesthetics of these
sorts of events. I think the question most
people will be asking is: Why is this
art?" And though she says the tone of the
show is playful and humorous, she also
adds, "I think that's an important ques-
tion to consider."

"Convention" opens May 21 and runs
;h,. ',i-h September 13 at the Museum
of Contemporary Art, 770 NE 125th St.,
North Miami. For hours and more infor-
mation call 305-893-6211 or visit www.

Feedback: letters@biscaynetimes.com

residential renovation

residential renovation

residential renovation residential renovation

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009




101 NE 40th St, Miami
www 101exhibit com
Through May 2
"Works" by Charles Pfahl
May 9 through June 20 "Metal" by Curtis Lafollette
Reception May 9, 7 to 10 p.m.

233 NW 36th St, Miami
www abbafineart com
Through May 29 "Zoe" by Debra Holt
Reception May 9, 7 to 10 p.m.

2134 NW Miami Ct, Miami
www alejandravonhartz net
Through May 30
"Hablando con la Pared" by Eudenlo Espinoza
Reception May 9, 7 to 10 p.m.

2033 NW 1st PI, Miami
www amayagallery com
Call gallery for exhibition information

3900 NE 1st Ave Miami
www valerericartgallery com
Call gallery for exhibition information

1 NE 40th St, Miami
www artfusiongallery com
Through June 24
"Illumination of the Soul" with various artists
Reception May 9, 7 to 10 p.m.

111 NW 1st St, Suite 625, Miami
www mlamidadearts org
Call gallery for exhibition information

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

171 NW 23rd St, Miami
www artformz net
Through May 4 "Threesome" with Anja Marals, Alette
Simmons-Jimenez, and Chleko Tanemura
May 9 through June 6 "WELCOME" with Rai Escale,
Sibel Kocabasl, Gisela Savdle, and Gulllermo Portleles,
a solo show by Alette Simmons-Jimenz, and a solo
show by Donna Haynes
Reception May 9, 7 to 10 p.m.

561 NW 32nd St, Miami
www bacfl org
May 8 through June 1 "Fresh Paint" curated by Lauren
Wagner with Alain Castoriano, Betty Flelsher, Jalme
Gil, Patricia Gutlerrez, Babette Herschberger, Russell
Sharon, and Alicia Torres, and a group show with
various Miami-Dade College, Kendall campus artists
May 28 BAC Open House
Reception May 8, 7 to 10 p.m.

4141 NE 2nd Ave #202, Miami

www artnet com/bgillman
Call gallery for exhibition
information A N 1

180 NE 39th St, #210, Miami
By appointment info@
basfisherinvitational com "'.
www basfisherinvitational
Through May 9
"Out There" by Kathleen
Reception May 9, 7 to 10

3550 N Miami Ave, Miami Mitzi Pederson, Untitled, cinder blocks and glitter,
www bernicesteinbaumgallery 2009, at World Class Boxing.

Through May 2
"Mostly Mutant" by Edouard Duval Carrie

8351 NE 8th Ct, Miami
www susannacaldwell com
Through May 22
"Exuberant Assemblages and Sculptures Made from
Florida Wood" by Susanna Caldwell
Reception May 9, 4 to 9 p.m.

158 NW 91st St, Miami Shores
www cjazzart com
By appointment carol@cjazzart com
Through May 10
"The Drawing Show" with various artists
May 15 through June 8
"New Abstraction" with various artists
Reception May 15, 7 to 10 p.m.

541 NW 27th St, Miami
www visual org
Through May 21
"Visionary Photographer" by Clarence John Laughlin
May 8 through May 9
"ARTISTS UNDERFOOT" performance art exhibition
Performances May 8 and 9, 6 to 10 p.m.

250 NW 23rd St, Miami
www charest-welnberg com
Through June 6 "Constructions Deductions and
Reductions" by Thomas B Bowker

2441 NW2nd Ave, Miami
www chelseagalleria com
Through May 6
"Pulp" with Elsa Mora, Kate Kretz, Kent Henrickson,
Brian O' Neilll, Tina Salveson, Reinerlo Tamayo, and

787 NE 125th St North Miami
www chirinossanchez com
Through May 24
"Stabbing Hate" by R E Sanchez

282 NW 36th St, Miami
www damlenb com
Through May 6
"Broader Horizon" by Aline Jansen
"Broader Horizon will be held at a special location:
618 SW 8th St., Miami

2234 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
www castilloart com
May 9 through June 30
Group show with Adler Guerrier, Aramis Gutlerrez,
Qulsqueya Henrlquez, Susan Lee-Chun, Pepe Mar,
Glexls Novoa, Javier Pin6n, Leyden Rodriguez-
Casanova, Frances Trombly, and Wendy Wischer
Reception May 9, 7 to 10 p.m.

2051 NW2nd Ave, Miami
Call gallery for exhibition information

2043 N Miami Ave, Miami
www dlfinearts com
May 9 through June 6 "Lost Horizon" by Felice Grodin
"Painted" by Katrin Moller
"2 Girls and a Boy" with Katherine Ordonez, Chottlp
Nimla, and Michael Okey
Reception May 9, 7:30 to 10 p.m.

3938 NE 39th St, Miami
www diasporavibe net
Through May 21 "Runaway Reaction" with Marion
Griffith and Susan Mains
May 24 through June 4 "Off the Wall/Experimental
Series" with Carlos Alejandro and Roger Bowes
Reception May 29, 7 to 10 p.m.

151 NW 24th St, Miami
www dorschgallery com
Through May 9 "Brendan, Brandon, & Brenda" with
various artists
May 9 through June 6 notaa bene Illustrated demons &
allegories, stripped of one religion, culture or narrative, are
cast adrift and, accordingly, find new haunts" with Arlen
Austin, Rene Barge, Ernesto Calvano, Alyssa Phoebus,
Shazla Sikhander, Reeve Schumacher, and Patricia Smith
Reception May 9, 7 to 10 p.m.

51 NW 36th St, Miami
www dotfiftyone com
Through June 20 "Pornorama" by Gonzalo Fuenmayor
and "timeless by Hernan Cedola
Reception May 9, 7 to 10 p.m.

7520 NE 4th Ct, Miami
May 9 "Artist For Sale" by Max Emerson and The
Physloc Twins
Reception May 9, 8 p.m. to 1 a.m.

47 NE 25th St, Miami
www edgezones org
May 9 through June 9
Solo show by Magdlel Aspillaga
Reception May 9, 8 to 11 p.m.

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

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

750 NE 124th St, North Miami #2
wwwfachearts com
Call gallery for exhibition information

2247 NW 1st PI Miami
www snitzer com
Through May 2 "DISLOCATION'

by Timothy Buwalda

174 NW 23rd St, Miami
www gallerydlet com
May 9 through June 6 "Citygarden and Microscope"
with Krlstopher Benedict and Peter LaBler
Reception May 9, 7 to 10 p.m.

62 NE 27th St, Miami
www garynader com
Call gallery for exhibition information

3326 N Miami Ave, Miami
www hardcoreartcontemporary com
Through May 16 "Love Stories" with various artists and
"Fashion Slave" by Claude Guenard
Reception May 9, 7 to 10 p.m.

2294 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
www haroldgolengallery com
Through May 2 "The Exotic and Lurid Art of Richle
Fahey" by Richle Fahey

250 NW 23rd St Loft 206, Miami
www flightstudlogallery com
Through May 8
"Aviation Artists Quartet" with Herve Alexandre, Jo-Ann
Lizlo, PilotO, and Desiree Bordes
Through May 31
"Taking Flight" by PilotO
Reception May 9, 7 to 10 p.m.

164 NW 20th St, Miami
www onemansho com
Call gallery for exhibition information

50 NE 29 St, Miami
www kelleyroygallery com
Call gallery for exhibition information

Continued on page 37

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com May 2009

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009


Art Listings
Continued from page 36

2249 NW 1st PI Miami
www kevinbrukgallery com
Through June 11 Solo show by Richard Butler
Reception May 9, 7 to 10 p.m.

3312 N Miami Ave, Miami
www kunsthaus org mx
Through May 30 "Reflejando" by Oscar Aguirre
Reception May 9, 7 to 10 p.m.

6900 Biscayne Blvd, Miami
Call gallery for exhibition information

155 NE 38th St, Miami
www locustprojects org
May 9 through June 28
"By Any Means" Kate Gilmore
Reception May 9, 7 to 10 p.m.

98 NW 29th St, Miami
www lulsadelantadomlaml com
Through May 31 "Homeless Boy" by Dario Villalba

2441 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
www artnet com/reltzel html
Through May 30
Group show with various artists

Kate Gilmore, Double Dutch, video
still, 2004, at Locust Projects.

12502 NE 8th Ave North Miami
www marofloresgallery com
Through May 25
"EVANGELIZATION" by Marlo Flores

1601 SW 1st St, Miami
www mcpagallery com
Call gallery for exhibition information

126 NE 40th St, Miami
www mlamlartgroup com
Through June 1
"Wake Up Your Wallsl" with James Kitchens, Jeff
League, Tom Rossetti, Gall Taylor, Shawn McNulty,
Hessam, Goli Mahallatl, and Gregory Deane
Through July 1
"How Surreal Life Can Be" by Hector Armendariz

244 NW 35th St, Miami
www mlamlartspace corn
Call gallery for exhibition information

300 NE 2nd Ave ,
Bldg 1, Room 1365, Miami
www mdc edu
Call gallery for exhibition information

1501 Biscayne Blvd, Miami
www mymlu com
Call gallery for exhibition information

346 NW 29th St, Miami
www museovault com
Call gallery for exhibition information

3100 NW 7th Ave, Miami
www oh-wow com
Through May 9
"Make it Rain" by Scott Campbell
Reception May 9, 8 to midnight

2450 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
www panamericanart com
Through May 23
"The Mystery of Migrations" by Carlos Estevez
"Diptychs One Lens, Two Visions" with Gory and
Adrian Lopez
Reception May 9, 6 to 9 p.m.

2219 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
www praxis-art com
Call gallery for exhibition information

81 NW 24th St, Miami
www puzzlementart com
Ongoing show with Kevin Brady, Manuel Carbonell,
Nichole Chimentl, Carter Davis, Stephen Gamson,
Raquel Glottman, Jim Herbert, Jennifer Kaiser, Alex
Palva Lopez, Andy Pledllato, Tomy F Trujillo, Jonathan
"Depoe" Villoch, and Glancarlo Zavala

531 NE 82nd Terr, Miami
www spinellogallery com
Call gallery for exhibition information

162 NE 50 Terr, Miami
www myspace com/stashgallery
May 9 through June 9 "P(ART)Y" by Aholsniffsglue
Reception May 9, 7 to midnight

66 NE 40th St, Miami
www stevemartinfineart com
Call gallery for exhibition information

2020 NW Miami Ct, Miami
www twentytwentyprojects com
May 9 through June 6 Solo show by David Rohn
Reception May 9, 7 to midnight

Continued on page 38

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May 2009 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com



.1 -r


Art Listings
Continued from page 37
2200 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
Call gallery for exhibition information

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

10 NE 3rd St, Miami
www wallflowergallery com
myspace com/wallflowergallery
Call gallery for exhibition information

3322 NW 2nd Ave, Miami
www whitevinylspace com
Call gallery for exhibition information

201 NE 39th St, Miami
www wrpfineart com
Through May 16 "BERLIN NEW YORK MIAMI" by
Freddy Reltz


CIFO (Cisneros Fontanals Art Foundation)
1018 N Miaml Ave, Miami
www clfo org
Call gallery for exhibition information

11200 SW8th St, Miami
http //thefrost flu edu/
Through May 10
BFA show with various artists
Through August 16
"Because I Say So" sculpture from the
Scholl Collection
Through September 16
"Genetic Portraits" by Nela Ochoa

1301 Stanford Dr, Coral Gables
www lowemuseum org
Through June 14 "UM Students and MFA
Exhibition" with various artists and "Naturell"
by Carsten Meier
101 W FlaglerSt, Miami
www miamiartmuseum org
Through September 13
"NeoHooDoo Art for a Forgotten Faith" with
various artists
Through October 11
"Recent Acquisitions" with various artists
770 NE 125th St, North Miami
www mocanoml org
Through May 10
"Abstract Cinema" with various artists
May 21 through September 13


Pti S Grl (a l), ik a

ate on ,e 200,

ah o G r
,"- "^ -.,

-t. t r-NL

S T. -

Patricia Smith, Garland (detail), ink and
watercolor on paper, 16-minute loop, 2008
at the Dorsch Gallery.

Convention with Julieta Aranda, Fia Backstrom,
Xavier Cha, Anne Daems & Kenneth Andrew Mroczek,
Fritz Haeg, Corey McCorkle, Dave McKenzie, My
Barbarian, Christodoulos Panayiotou, Sean Raspet,
Superflex and Jens Haaning, and Miami's Jim Drain,
Gean Moreno, and Bert Rodriguez
404 NW 26th St, Miami

www mocanoml org
Through June 27
Solo show by Luls Gispert

591 NW 27th St, Miami
www margulieswarehouse com
Call gallery for exhibition information
95 NW 29th St, Miami
www rubellfamilycollection com
Call for operating hours and exhibit information
Through May 30
"30 AMERICANS" with Nina Chanel Abney, John
Bankston, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Mark Bradford, lona
Rozeal Brown, Nick Cave, Robert Colescott, Noah
Davis, Leonardo Drew, Renee Green, David Hammons,
Barkley L Hendricks, Rashid Johnson, Glenn Ligon,
Kalup Linzy, Kerry James Marshall, Rodney McMillian,
Wangechi Mutu, William Pope L, Gary Simmons,
SXaviera Simmons, Lorna Simpson, Shinique Smith,
Jeff Sonhouse, Henry Taylor, Hank Willis Thomas,
Mickalene Thomas, Kara Walker, Carrie Mae Weems,
Kehinde Wiley, and Purvis Young

Debra and Dennis Scholl Collection
170 NW 23rd St, Miami
www worldclassboxing org/
May 9 through June 1
"I think I was looking at that before" by Mitzi Pederson
Reception May 9, 7 to 10 p.m.

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



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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com May 2009


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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009


Culture Briefs

You Think That You Shall
Never See...
Hearing about a plant like the Royal
Poinciana or the Silver Tabebuia may
seem like a call from some far-away
place, but Fairchild Tropical Botanic
Garden (10901 Old Cutler Rd.) is here to
tell you otherwise at its annual Tropi-
cal Flowering Tree Society Show and
Sale May 9 and 10 from 9:30 a.m. to
4:30 p.m. You can chat with experts and
vendors about trees, vines, and shrubs
on display and for sale. Tickets good for
entire garden are $20, $15 for seniors,
$10 for children 6-13, and free for
younger children and members. Discount
coupons are available on the Fairchild
Website. Call 305-667-1651 or visit www.

Ahoy, Mom!
Make points with mom the day before
Mother's Day by taking her out on the
water for a glorious boat tour, his-
torically helmed by the esteemed Paul
George, on Saturday, May 9. He'll show
and tell her about colorful and notorious
Stiltsville, those houses elevated above
Biscayne Bay, and other rich trinkets of
Miami's coastal history, like the Cape
Florida Lighthouse, and Key Biscayne.
Sponsored by the Historical Museum of
Southern Florida, the tour leaves Bay-
side Marketplace (401 Biscayne Blvd.)
at 10:00 a.m., returning at 1:00 p.m. Ad-
vance reservations and payment required.
Tickets are $39 for HMSF members, $44
for nonmembers. Call 305-375-1621.

Like Father (J.S.Bach),
Like Son (C.P.E. Bach)
Imagine growing up in the shadow of
your famous father who just happens
to be musical genius Johann Sebastian
Bach. The offspring, you'd think, would
wisely find another line of work. Not

so. All four of the master's sons pursued
musical careers, and one, Carl Phillipp
Emanuel, managed to make a name for
himself. On Saturday, May 16, tribute
will be paid to father and son by the
Miami Bach Society Orchestra at St.
Martha's Church (9301 Biscayne Blvd.).
Don Oglesby conducts the orchestra. In
addition, solo pianists Paul Posnak and
Shelly Berg (UM music school dean)
will perform the elder Bach's keyboard
concert. The music begins at 7:30 p.m.
Tickets are $10-$20. Go to www.saintm-
artha.tix.com or call 1-800-595-4849.

South Florida's Own
Let your family's imagination fly into a
fantastical jungle with Cirque Dreams
Jungle Fantasy. Behold an international
cast of 28, including acrobats, gymnasts,
contortionists, strongmen, balancing art-
ists, and singers. The production company
originated right here in South Florida in
1993, and is not to be confused with Cirque
du Soleil. Our homegrown troupe brings
its latest creation from Broadway to the
Adrienne Arsht Center for the Perform-
ing Arts (1300 Biscayne Blvd.) May 12-17.
Tickets are $25-$62. Shows begin at 8:00
p.m. Matinees at 2:00 p.m. The final per-
formance is at 7:30 pm. Call 305-949-6722
or visit www.arshtcenter.org.

Orchid Obsession
The beauty and sheer exoticism of
orchids have captivated, even obsessed,
generations of expert gardeners. But
there are many beautiful varieties that
just about anyone can grow at home.
Learn about these mysterious plants
(including their ingenious pollination
methods) at the annual Redland Inter-
national Orchid Show, one of the largest
in the U.S. The county's Fruit and Spice
Park (24801 SW 187th Ave.) plays host

May 15-17. An eye-popping number of
specimens will be on display, experts
will speak, raffles will be held. Supplies
and plants for sale will be also avail-
able. Tickets are $7. Hours are 9:00 a.m.
to 5:00 p.m. Call 305-247-5727 or go to
www.fsp @miamidade.gov.

Got a Question? Here's the
Worried about healthcare? Debts? The
mortgage? Then get yourself to Unity
on the Bay (411 NE 21st St.) on Satur-
day, May 16. That's where more than 35
public and private institutions will join
forces for a free community-resource fair
to help the many South Floridians who
now find themselves in need. The fair
will benefit those who are facing foreclo-
sure, bankruptcy, or immigration woes;
those struggling with credit-card debt
or who are in need of loan modification,
food stamps, unemployment assistance,
or mental health services; those who are
uninsured or need health screenings for
high blood pressure, diabetes, or HIV/
AIDS. Whew! It'll be a one-stop shop for
all your problem-solving needs. The fair
runs from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. For
info go to www.unityonthebay.org or see
page 6 in this issue.

Bike Riders Unite!
If you've ever ridden around Miami on a
bike, you know what we're talking about.
It's nuts! Make your presence known.
Stand up for your right to share the road
downtown at the free City of Miami-
sponsored Bike Miami Days on Sunday,
May 17. The city will block traffic along
stretches of Flagler Street and S. Miami
Avenue for this monthly event. Become
part of a growing movement to encourage
Miami and other cities to create more
bike paths and amenities for two-wheel-
ers. Power to the bike! From 9:00 a.m. to
3:00 p.m. Visit bikemiamiblog.wordpress.
com for parking, bike route, bike rentals,
lunch spots, and all things bike.

Shining Young Stars of the
As its season comes to an end, the South
Florida Youth Symphony performs
its Shining Stars concert, including
guest jazzman Joe Donato in a tribute
to Duke Ellington Sunday, May 17 in
the Lehman Theatre at Miami-Dade

College north campus (11380 NW 27th
Ave.). Pianist Adriana Quesada performs
Mozart's Piano Concerto No. 17. Danc-
ing to A Chorus Line will be the talented
young ladies of Conchita Espinoza Acad-
emy, directed by Danella Bedford. The
program begins at 4:00 p.m. Tickets are
$20. Students and those under 8 or over
55 are $5. Call 305-238-2729.

[0W I1

Long Hair, Beads, Sandals,
Incense Far Out!
Growing nostalgic for a little peace, love,
and happiness? You can find it, along
with hundreds no, thousands of
others at the 6th Annual Greynolds
Park Love-In (17530 W. Dixie Hwy.) on
Sunday, May 17. Mitch Ryder and the
Detroit Wheels will be groovin' with
their chart-topping, 1960s rock and roll.
There'll also be a costume contest (think
Haight-Ashbury), vintage VW bugs and
buses, and food for the whole family.
Also performing: Rewind, Blackstar,
Brokedown, Miami Rock Ensemble. It's
all free (naturally!), though there's the
usual Greynolds parking charge. The
love flows from 11:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Call 305-945-3425.

The Play's the Thing
The precocious young artists at Miami's
New World School of the Arts (25 NE
2nd St.) take center stage at the conser-
vatory's 19th annual New Playwrights
Festival May 21-24. Two plays are
featured, written by and performed by
NWSA students, in evening performanc-
es at 7:30 p.m. Weekend matinees at 1:00
and 4:00 p.m. Admission is $5 to each
play. Call 305-237-7855 or visit www.

Compiled by BT intern Brian Horowitz

Feedback: letters@ biscaynetimes.com

May 2009 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


Green on Blue

Three waterfront parks offer tranquility amid the traffic

By Jim W. Harper
BT Contributor

sometimes you open the fridge and
see nothing, even when it's full of
food. But look again with new eyes
and you might find a tasty meal.
A similar thing happens when ar-
riving or leaving the City of Miami
on Interstate 195 or 36th Street along
Biscayne Bay. You probably see nothing
but water and condos, but your periph-
eral vision may find some unexpected
patches of green.
This hidden-in-plain-view waterfront
greenway sits in the shadows of the
condominium known as Blue, a 35-story
reflective building designed by Arquitec-
tonica and shoehorned in between 1-195
and NE 36th Street as it approaches the
Interstate toward Miami Beach. As with
many public spaces in Miami, this one
spins stories of great potential, neglect,
and a partial resurrection.
The waterfront here is composed of
three mini parks trisected by the cause-
way and 36th Street and operated by the
City of Miami, although there is some
confusion concerning its ownership of
one of them. The parks mainly serve the
residents and vagrants of Edgewater and,
in particular, the condominium commu-
nities of Charter Club, Blue, and Miami
Bay Club. To the west, the Taco Bell
and Denny's on Biscayne Boulevard are

Magnolia Park: Great views, kiddie soccer heaven, direct water access.

within walking distance. To the east, the
Julia Tuttle Causeway snakes across the
bay to Miami Beach. The cars whizzing
on and off the highway make the area
decidedly pedestrian-unfriendly.
The smallest of the three parks has
created the biggest fuss. Blue's backyard
on the bay, Martell Park, has crisp signs
from the City of Miami that designate it
as an official dog park. The park may be
temporary, as the City of Miami rents

it for $1 per year from the
Florida Department of
Transportation. A 2007
letter from FDOT, provid-
ed by Sean-Paul Melito, a
member of the city's parks
and recreation advisory
board, states that the land
was an FDOT-owned
drainage ditch that would
"no longer be available for
use by the public." Melito
claims that a city building
permit requires Blue, not
FDOT, to maintain the
park as public open space.
Melito and other dog-
walkers protested the park's
impending closure and
garnered the support of city
Commissioner MarC Sar-
noff. Melito says Sarnoff
helped make the park signs
and other improvements

A dogs have taken over the ditch.
S Martell Park is a hardly a blip on
Sthe sidewalk, but it makes for Miami's
Ssole dog park on the water. Only a
I slice of bay water is visible owing to
bridges on either side that converge into
a single highway island just east of the
park. But from the seawall, dogs can see
themselves in the water and watch their
reflection reverberate as needlefish sprint
away. The height of the seawall, however,
means that they can't get in the water.
Missing from the dog park is a fresh-
water source and other doggie amenities.
In one corner is a strange, permanent
hutch marked as a chlorine station,
which appears to treat storm water drain-
ing into the bay. Melito says existing
fresh-water spigots were removed in
2007. He also complains that the new
benches in the park are "anti-social" be-
cause of their placement, and visitors can
be seen sitting on the ground near the

Martell Park: It's doggie heaven, and though
small, it's facing big problems.

appear in the summer of
2008. Official documents from the City of
Miami indicate that the park is fulfilling
its destiny. The May 2007 "Miami Parks
and Public Spaces Master Plan" desig-
nates Martell Park as a future dog park.
(The city's Website has an outdated link
to the plan, but it can be found at www.
plans/ParksPublicSpaces.asp) Today

entrance. But he also praises the park as
a "great social place." Everyone and their
dog seem to know each other.
The main issue confronting Martell
Park and the other two adjacent parks are
the homeless. A well-publicized group
of sex offenders have been mandated to

Continued on page 41

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.comMay 2009


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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009


Continued from page 40

live underneath the bridges of the Julia
Tuttle Causeway (Miami's version of
Bridges of Madison County?), within
easy walking distance of the parks. The
low bridges alongside these parks are lit-
tered with sleeping bags and unsanitary
implements. Residents say that vagrants
often sleep here.
The largest park, Magnolia Park, is
three open acres with gorgeous
views of the bay. Officially
known as E. Albert Pallot Park, Mart
its main afternoon users are s
soccer teams. Adults congre-
gate around 7:00 p.m., and an dog
informal group of five- to ten- and th
year-olds practices at 6:00 p.m.
on Monday and Wednesday, ac-
cording to Francisco Vela, coach
of the team he calls "Miami Central." He
says a group of older children play on
Tuesday and Thursdays.
"The kids love to play here," says
Vela. "It's an excellent location. Beautiful."
On this afternoon he has set up bright
orange and green boundaries and goals

for his diminutive soccer players. A few
adults have set up camp nearby to watch.
Vela's only complaint is that some dog
owners do not clean up after their pets,
and his kids have to play on the same
The shoreline of Magnolia Park
is one of the few in Miami that is not
blocked by rocks or a seawall, and
during one of my visits, a father and
daughter were busy studying snails and
other objects along the shore. The tide

ell Park is a hardly a blip on the
alk, but it makes for Miami's sole
park on the water, and everyone
leir dog seem to know each other.

has also brought in copious amounts of
litter. Stuck in the mounds of seaweed
was a large, dead gull.
The trashiness of this shore has
prompted activists to urge approval
of the $1.2 million Albert Pallot Park
Shoreline Stabilization Project listed

on StimulusWatch.org.
"Stabilization" probably
means an extension of
the seawall on either
side of the park. At a
minimum, a net needs
to be installed to cap-
ture and remove trash
from the water. Some-
thing must be done
before this park earns
a Nci' Jersey Toxic
Beach" award.
The other water-
front park among the
trio, Stearns Park, is a
leftover piece of land
useful only to residents -
along NE 37th Street.
Everyone else must risk
their lives by running
across the Julia Tuttle, Stearns Park:
and it's not worth it. I need to dodg
have heard that this park
is popular with street walkers and no, I
did not even try to confirm that.
Although these three parks are
located along a very busy highway, when
you're here, you don't feel the road rage.

Unless you live next door, you'll
e traffic to enter.

Maybe it's the bay breeze that cancels
out the roaring engines and the water that
calms the spirit. To the passing motorist,
nothing is here, but to the neighborhood
soccer player or dog walker, these small

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May 2009

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


By Jenni Person
BT Contributor

or those of us parenting with
a partner, there is always that
nucleus to tend to, the heart beat-
ing at the center that keeps it all flow-
ing smoothly and cooperatively. And
there are all kinds of variations on those
partnerships the old-fashioned nuclear
model of a partnered mom and dad, or
the more contemporary dad and dad,
mom and mom, mom and dad living
separately, mom and grandma, or mom
and her husband and dad and his girl-
friend but they all need to be nurtured
as we and our families grow and evolve
and mark milestones.
I like to be really honest when I talk
about my relationship. As of today, I am
one of those disgustingly lucky people
who soberly experienced love at first sight
and has so far lived happily ever after. But
make no mistake, my life pretty much
sucks in every other way. My partner and I
have worked very hard for what we've had
the past 14 years. We can be screaming
ugly words at each other in the morning,
and by evening we're both apologizing.
Everything is not always smooth; there are
always going to be long-term issues. But
acceptance is the key to living with another
human being.
Our years together have helped to
short-hand the communication process,
which is why I'm grateful we had the
luxury of waiting eight years before
having a baby. During that time, we
developed our mutual household culture,
coping mechanisms, problem-solving
tools, nonverbal communications signals,
and vocabulary. Those were also years

Love Is All There Is

- It may sound corny but it's not, especiallyfor fiunilic
during which we luxuri-
ated in each other and
our togetherness. All
this strengthens our .
co-parenting experi-
ence and informs the
love we share with
our kids today. It's so
important that they see
us as human, imperfect,
but loving of them
and of each other so /
someday they can buoy
the lives of their own

relationships and families with love -
which, in the end, is all any mortal has.
Because I am such a goofy fan of
love, I was inspired recently when my
friend David, a Morningside dad and
owner of a Biscayne Corridor business
producing promotional items and em-
broidered and screen-printed wearables
(www.igotagoodcatch.com), posted on
Facebook the celebration of his 20-year
partnership with the love of his life,
Damian. David called it a "virtual an-
niversary party."
I was also struck by the length of
time David and Damian had been to-
gether before becoming parents. I spoke
to David about this recently, and in
addition to agreeing with me that living
so much life with your partner enhances
parenting, he also talked about how
expanding into a family really solidifies
the relationship.
It's much easier to walk away -
and later regret splitting up over some-
thing that seems completely stupid in
hindsight when there isn't the life of
a family involved. Luckily, David and
Damian apply the hard work it takes to

support a relationship and kids, because
through all these years, all this love,
and this solid commitment to family,
David and Damian in fact cannot
legally split up. They aren't extended
the same rights as hetero couples and
families in Florida, so they can't legally
be a family, and they can't legally get
out of it either. Same-gender couples
and families can build legal bond to
an extent, but in the end, the State of
Florida still does not recognize their
legal rights as parents or partners.
But obviously sometimes split up
we must, and thus I'm equally inspired
by the co-parenting efforts of my
friend Li-Mor, who works hard and
with humility to raise her daughter
in partnership with her ex-husband. I
turned into a puddle of sentimentality
when she described making a Passover
seder for herself, her daughter, her ex,
and his father. "We're a lot of people,"
she said in response to my question
why she didn't take up an invitation to
a colleague's house at Passover. I real-
ize she's one of the fortunate divorced,
single moms who is able to maintain a

relationship with her ex and together
be present for every important moment
in her daughter's life. I wish everyone
were so fortunate. She is an amazing
woman I'm proud to call my friend.

Attention Young Filmmakers
Miami Light Project has partnered with
Nike to give 20 high school students the
opportunity to create films about sports,
social change, and their community in
the Third Annual Filmmakers Bootcamp.
This summer South Florida teens be-
tween the ages of 14 and 18 are eligible
for the four-week camp.
Students will learn production,
screenwriting, script development, edit-
ing, and post-production aspects of film
from South Florida-based filmmakers
Gina Cunningham, John Huynh, and
Rhonda Mitrani. At the conclusion of the
camp, the students will create short films
that will be screened for the public.
The focus of this year's Filmmak-
ers Bootcamp is to give kids the oppor-
tunity to tell stories about how sports
can inspire social change and ignite a
The camp will run from June 15 to
July 10. Miami Light Project is cur-
rently accepting applications for up to 20
students. Full scholarships are available,
and lunch will be provided for each
camper. Transportation vouchers will
also be available based on need. Applica-
tions are due Friday, May 15. For more
information, please call Miami Light
Project at 305-576-4350. To download an
application, visit www.miamilightpro-
ject.com and click on "downloads."

Feedback: letters(@ibiscaynetimes.com

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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009


Falling Leaves? Must Be Springtime

It not about autumn

it s about drought

By Jeff Shimonski
BT Contributor

Lately I've been surprised to overhear
people remarking that they have
never seen so many trees without
foliage, and perhaps the trees were actu-
ally dying. A couple of times I stopped to
explain that many species of tropical trees
are deciduous, just like temperate trees in
the winter, and if you look closer, the trees
are all in various stages of flowering.
Tropical and subtropical deciduous trees
drop their leaves not in response to changes
in seasonal temperatures or climate but
to seasonal rainfall patterns. The foliage
is dropped to conserve water and prevent
death of the tree from drought. It can occur
any time of year. This past winter was very
dry, and trees without supplemental irriga-
tion dropped most or all of their foliage.
Even in the wild you can see differences
in the timing and duration of leaflessness
caused by variations in the height of the
water table or the soil conditions. You can
also notice differences in how property
owners irrigate (or irrigate too much) by the
amounts of foliage on the same species of
tree in the same neighborhood.
But spring is a wonderful time of year
to look for color in our trees! Even the
most plant-challenged person can't help
but notice the brilliant yellow-flowered
Tabebuias along our roadways. There are
trees in flower everywhere, and with our
notorious traffic jams, we have plenty of
time to look out our car windows to enjoy
them. I've been noticing wonderful flower-
ing specimens of Bauhinia with the two
lobed leaves and purple fragrant flowers,
the spiny trunked Ceiba, the waxy flowers
of Bombax, the many species and colors of

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The attractive flower of Bombax ceiba.

Tabebuia and the orange Geiger, to name
but a few.
So drought is sometimes a good thing.
During rainy winters here in South Florida,
deciduous flowering trees can produce foli-
age and flowers at the same time. This can
also occur in highly irrigated landscapes.
Sometimes the flowers get lost amid the
foliage and cannot be visually appreciated
- or pollinated, as the pollinators can't
find them. Give these plants a chance to
dry out and they will give you a nice show
at the end of the dry season.
Speaking of the orange-flowered
Geiger, I saw at Jungle Island that the
newly emerged canopy of foliage on these
small trees was under attack by Geiger
tortoise beetles, as it is most years. It's a
shame, because the new foliage is a light-
green color that really shows off the bright
orange of the flowers. The beetle is usually

Hours 7:30am to 6pm
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light green and looks like an oversize lady
beetle with a translucent shell. This species
only lays its eggs on the orange Geiger in
clusters on a single leaf.
When the eggs hatch, the larvae,
which look like lady beetle larvae only
larger and slimy, begin to eat the leaf,
leaving only the veins. As the larvae
grow they quickly spread to other leaves
and can eventually defoliate the tree.
I have learned to recognize the damage
when the larvae first hatch (a cluster of
small tiny holes in a new leaf) and I just
pull off the entire leaf with all of the newly
hatched larvae and drop it onto the ground.
The larvae then die without spreading back
onto the tree. No spraying and no expense.
I've never seen Geiger tortoise beetles
on any of the other Geiger tree species,
although I'm sure they occasionally dine
on them as well.

At Jungle Island I've recently begun
Planting a tropical tree group that I had very
- little experience with, and is not deciduous.
SThese are the tropical conifers. We're ac-
customed to temperate conifers like cypress,
pine, and the Douglas fir, but this is a very
diverse group of trees, and even thoughthey
look very temperate (at least to me), some
are quite tropical. They are closely related to
the cycads, having cones instead of flowers.
The bald cypress trees at the original Parrot
Jungle are conifers, and we did grow some
Podocarpus, but I had no previous experi-
ence with these other species from tropical
areas like Malaysia or New Caledonia.
Within the past few months, I planted
a very attractive Araucaria species (like
the Norfolk Island pine) with bluish foliage,
an Agathis species from New Zealand,
and a Nageia species from Southeast Asia.
The Agathis and the Nageia are both trees
that can grow quite large in their native
habitats, although much more slowly than
the Norfolk Island pine. The foliage is
attractive, with succulent-like leaves. The
new growth comes out in "spurts" with a
lighter color that contrasts attractively with
the older foliage. For those who would like
a more "temperate" looking landscape,
tropical conifers like Podocarpus and those
previously mentioned will give the desired
look. These particular conifers also grow
well in alkaline soil conditions, meaning
little or no fertilizer will be needed.

.i,. \,,,. / ii.-, is an ISA-certified munic-
ipal arborist, director of horticulture at
Jungle Island, and principal of Tropical
Designs ofFlorida. Contact him atjeff@t
tropicaldesigns. con.

Feedback: letters(itbiscaynetimes.com

It's an introduction to preschool.


Miami Shores Presbyterian Church welcomes children from 18 months to 3 years of age.
DCF Licensed (#C11MD1694), fully trained staff, creative programming
Monday, Wednesdays, and Fridays, 9:00 am to 12 noon. Register now for Summer Sessions I & II
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May 2009 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


A Primer on Puppies, Part 2

Choosing a puppy -and raising one you can live with

all it the Obama Effect. Or more ac-
curately, the Malia-and-Sasha Effect.
The White House arrival of the na-
tion's First Puppy has sparked intense interest
in Portuguese water dogs specifically, and in
puppies more generally. Let's imagine that
you've caught the fever, and now you have
your new puppy. Wonderful! But what next?
This month we'll discuss some pointers on
what to do and definitely what not to do with
your new family member, that four-legged
little bundle ofjoy.
First, however, I would like to ad-
dress something I left out of last month's
column ("A Primer on Puppies," April
2009). That is papers. Those magical
papers. Every week someone will tell me
that their puppy "has papers." That they
sought out a dog with "papers." That
the puppy store must have good stock
because the puppy came with "papers."
"He has his papers, Lisa."
To this day, not one person who
bought a dog "with papers" can tell me
what they mean or signify when I ask them.
Yet they are very happy and impressed
they have them. Well, frankly, papers
do not add up to much, and certainly do
not mean your puppy will be a genius or
housebreak faster, no matter what the cost.
Technically, real papers signify that
the parents of the puppy were purebreds
and are registered with the American
Kennel Club (AKC). That's it. But many
people do not know that. They get a
certificate from their local pet shop, and
they believe they now have official papers.
Or maybe the puppy store simply makes
up phony AKC papers. Many pet shops

mSKW '

also go to breeder Websites to copy family
trees. You can also get a limited registra-
tion on dogs if they look enough like a
purebred. For example, Jay-J, my boldly
spotted Dalmatian, is clearly a Dalmatian
and can thus
receive a "lim-
ited registra- Bottom line for the
tion," meaning The only thing officei
he could do for is to lay them o
AKC sports h e-trai
like agility.
line for the
average pet owner: The only thing papers
are good for is to lay them on the floor to
help house-train the dog. Papers won't help
you if you're not a breeder or don't know
a- A. frolS* I~4~


the other dogs in the lineage anyway. And
importantly, they don't guarantee health
or temperament. Health is something
the breeder screens for separately, and a
quality breeder only breeds her healthiest
and nicest dogs,
which also
average pet owner: conform physi-
I papers" are good cally to the
the floor to help breed standard
She will have
Available for
you copies of
the dog parents'
health tests hip dysplasia, eye tests, and
so on.
But now that your puppy is here, we
need to make him a good canine citizen.

By Lisa Hartman
BT Contributor



Richard Prophete
Sales Representative

8400 NW 36th St, Ste. 350
Doral, FL 33166
(305) 389-9163 Cell
(305) 698-3144 Office
(800) 462-7587 Toll Free
rprophete@huma na.com

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com May 2009

The first rule is to start small. Do not give
him the whole house in which to eliminate
(and possibly to wreck). Start small, using
crate- or area-training first. Let the puppy
earn freedom gradually. The same should
be said for your own expectations in gener-
al. Start small. Think small. Do not expect
too much and you will not be disappointed.
You have to work with what you have, and
what you are capable of. He is just a baby
dog acting like a baby dog, trying to make
a way for himself.
The same can be said for socializing.
Yes, we want a highly social dog that we
can, say, travel anywhere with at anytime.
But you don't have to overwhelm the
puppy with people and strange objects all
the time. Invite some friendly people over,
take simple walks around the block and
meet the neighbors. Watch the local chil-
dren play on their skateboards from your
window, to start. Same with the vacuum
cleaner and other household appliances.
Let the puppy hear them turned on from a
distance first so as not to startle him.
Over the next two weeks, gradually
take your dog to explore new areas on
walks, to see new appliances and get a
little closer to them, to meet new people,
especially friendly men and children,
who will seem more friendly if they are
tossing or handing treats to the dog.
From the beginning of your dog
ownership, you should establish yourself
as important to the puppy. You should
be the reason for all things good in his
life: walks, play, and of course food. Be
there to feed your dog at scheduled meal
times. Do not leave him to free feed at
his leisure. As with people, food is a big

Continued on page 45

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009


Continued from page 44
resource to a dog, and a shiny bowl on
the floor should not receive the credit for
giving it to him. You should.
Prepare his food for him, and if he
has learned a cue such as "sit," ask him to
perform the behavior before you feed him.
Many dogs benefit from a "Nothing in life
is free" approach to all things. They will
learn to look to you and make you happy
first before they get what they want.

One of the funniest parts of training
is when I tell people what I went through

As with people, food is a big resc
to a dog, and a shiny bowl on the
should not receive the credit for j
it to him. You should.

with my puppy Saffy. As if I am going to
do something with my dog that is wildly

different from what I tell them to do with
their new pups! No, I'm a big advocate of
practicing what I preach. And
my puppy is still a baby herself,
urce and will do puppy things, and
she came with her own set of
S problems after living in a bad
giving situation. So it may go faster for
me to resolve things, but I still
have to do the work!
In the end, puppies are in
fact a lot of work, but they are worth it if
you can retain your wits and your sense

of humor. Remember to start small and
to have limited expectations. Then you
can build little successes one day at a
time. Eventually you'll think as much of
your new puppy as you do the adult dog
you had before him. Maybe even more!

Lisa Hartman is head dog trainer for
Pawsitively Pets. You can reach her at
f,.,n | ,. hi! .. i. l 1r,. 1 \ l t h .... .. ,in or

Feedback: letters @tbiscaynetimes.com



You may come to us,

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May 2009

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com



The Ocean's Most Fearsome Predators

No, it not sharks

By Jim W. Harper
BT Contributor

W hat's the one word you don't
want to hear at the beach?
No, it's not what you think.
"Police!" In 2003 a police SUV ran over
and killed a French tourist sunbathing
on Miami Beach. If you were thinking
"shark," you should know that no tourist
in Miami has ever died from a shark
attack. In fact there has never been a
confirmed death by shark in Miami.
Peter Benchley, the creator of Jaws,
spent his later years fighting to save
sharks. I saw him speak about shark
conservation at the University of Miami
shortly before he died in 2006. Sharks
had become the victim, he realized, and
man had become the jaws of death.
Every year some 100 million wild
sharks are killed by man. How many
men are killed annually by sharks?
About ten. The real difference, how-
ever, is that the human population and
its capacity to harvest the sea is rising,
whereas the shark and other fish popula-
tions are shrinking. It's the same sad
story in the sea as on land: Man is taking
too much and caring too little.
Global studies on sharks estimate
that their populations have shriveled in
the past century by 90 percent. More-
over, those that remain are being pursued
more relentlessly than ever.
But why care about such a dangerous
animal? The answer is essentially the
same as the answer about insects and
snakes and bears. People may find them
terrifying and inconvenient, but their
existence is linked to everything that
humans depend on. Balanced watersheds,

including their inhabitants from the
microscopic to the intimidating, provide
clean drinking water. Insects pollinate
our crops; animals are our main source
of protein. It's the simple circle of life
that makes each species valuable.
Sharks are valued for their fins.
Shark-fin soup is a delicacy in Chinese
culture, and demand for shark fins has
skyrocketed as East Asian countries
have gained wealth. Check out the 2007
documentary 1,/I, A ii,,. r to gain insight
on this international market and inhu-
mane fishery. The most barbaric fishers
will slice the fins off of live sharks and
dump the living bodies back into the
water to die a slow death. They don't
want to carry the extra weight of the
shark's body, which is much less valu-
able than the fins.
Shark-finning is illegal in the U.S.
and many other countries, but the
practice is nearly impossible to regulate
on the high seas. It requires a correction
from the marketplace.
One guy in Miami could care less
about the fate of sharks. "Mark the Shark"

it homo sapiens

runs a popular charter-fishing operation
and claims to be the world's leading shark
fisherman. Sportfishing is not the main
enemy of sharks (industrial fishing is), but
killing sharks for sport gives the impres-
sion that there are many to spare.
At the other end of the spectrum are
shark conservationists, and South Flor-
ida is home to many of the world's best.
The granddaddy of shark conservation
is Sonny Gruber, a Miami Beach native
who founded the Bimini Shark Lab and
retired not long ago from the University
of Miami. Following in his flippers is
current doctoral candidate at UM and
great-white-shark fanatic Neil Ham-
merschlag, who has led several groups
of South Florida high school students on
shark expeditions to Africa. Check out
his conservation Website and awesome
shark photos at neil4sharks.org.
At the University of Florida is the In-
ternational Shark Attack File. It runs one
of my favorite Websites, which attempts
to answer the question on every beach-
goer's mind: How long will it be before
I'm attacked and killed by a rogue shark?

The data tells us that Florida leads
the world in shark attacks. The good
news is that the vast majority of attacks
are not deadly, and they are concentrated
in the state's northeastern quadrant (be
careful in Daytona Beach).
According to the International Shark
Attack File, the Florida Keys has not
had a fatal shark attack since 1952 and
Miami-Dade since 1961, although Bro-
ward registered a fatality in 2001. Both
of these fatalities involved scuba divers,
as did a fatality last year in the Bahamas,
where diving expeditions feed sharks.
Shark-feeding is banned in Florida.
What's the total number of shark
attacks in Miami-Dade during the past
century? Ten. Fatalities? One. What's the
number of attacks in Florida from the
great white, the shark portrayed in Jaws?
Zero. More facts: Most attacks occur
on surfers. Alligator attacks in Florida
are less common but more deadly. More
people are killed annually by dogs, but
those attacks don't make the news.
Simply put, sharks are not out to get
us, but they do bite. If they taste a surfer,
they usually spit it out. They much prefer
turtles and seals.
Humans, on the other hand, are
definitely out to eliminate the shark,
although most people remain ignorant of
the pillage. Instead of adding ignorance
to fear, be aware of this situation and
study it. You will find that sharks de-
serve more than just respect. They need
protection like the wolf and the polar
bear and the sea turtle.
Add this bumper sticker to your collec-
tion: Man Attacks Shark. Save the Shark.

Feedback: letters(aibiscaynetimes.com

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com May 2009

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009


The Biscayne Corridor's most comprehensive restaurant guide. Total this month: 205.

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

Brickell / Downtown

1435 Brickell Ave., Four Seasons Hotel
Orignally an Italian/Mediterranean restaurant this comfortably
elegant upscale spot switched chefs in 2006 (to Patrick Duff,
formerly atthe Sukhothai in Bangkok), resulting in a complete
menu renovation Thailand's famed sense of culinary balance
is now evident throughout the global (though primarily Asian
or Latin American-inspired) menu, in dishes like yuzu/white
soya-dressed salad of shrimp tempura (with watercress, Vidalia
onion, avocado, pomegranate), a tender pork shank gazed with
spicy Szechuan citrus sauce (accompanied by a chorizo-flecked
plantain mash), or lunchtimes rare tuna burger with lively
wasabi aioli and wakame salad For dessert few chocoholics
can resist a buttery-crusted tartfilled with sinfully rich warm
chocolate custard $$$$$

Area 31
270 Biscayne Boulevard Way
Not that the sleek interior of this seafood restaurant
(named for fishing area 31, stretching from the Carolinas to
South America) isn't a glamorous dining setting But we'd
eat outside From the expansive terrace on the 16th floor
of the Epic condo and hotel on the Miami River, the views
of Brickell s high-rises actually make Miami look like a real
city As for ingestibles, 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, like Royal Red shrimp with salmoriglo
sauce The cocktails are, for a change, genuinely creative
They pack a wallop, but are refreshing rather than over-
wrought Luckily you don't have to choose one or the other

500 Brickell Key Dr., 305-913-8254
Floor-toceiling picture windows showcase Biscayne Bay But
diners are more likely to focus on the sparkling raw bar and open
kitchen, where chef Clay Conley crafts imagnatve global cre-
ations many of them combinations, to satsfy those who want it
all One offering, "A Study in Tuna," includes tuna sashimi, Maine
crab, avocado tempura, and caviar, with several Asian sauces
Moroccan lamb is three preparations (grilled chop, harlssa-man-
nated loin, and bastilla, the famed savory-sweet Middle Eastern
pastry, stuffed with braised shank), plus feta and smoked egg-
plant Finish with a vanilla souffle your way a choice of toppings
chocolate, raspberry, or creme anglaise $$$$$

109 NE 2nd Ave., 305-358-5751
While Indonesian food isnt easyto find in Miami, downtown
has secret stashes small joints catering to Asian-Pacific cruise-
ship and construction workers Opened circa 2002, this cute,
exotcally decorated cafe has survived and thrived for good
reason The homey cooking is delicious, and the friendly family
feel encourages even the tmid of palate to trysomething new
Novices will want Indonesia's signature jrjsttafel, a mix-and-match
collection of small dishes and condiments to be heaped on rice
Once you re hooked, there's great gado-gado veggiess in peanut
sauce), nasi goring ultimatee fried rice), and laksa, a complex
coconut-curry noodle soup that's near-impossible to find made
properly as it is here Note bring cash No plastic accepted here

The Bar at Level 25 (Conrad Hotel)
1395 Brickell Ave., 305-503-6500
On the Conrad's restaurant/lobby-level 25th floor, the expan-
sive, picture-windowed space around the corner from the check-
in desks used to bejust a lobby extension Now its The Bar,
which is notjust a watering hole with panoramic views At lunch
its an elegant sandwich bar, at night its a raw bar (with pristine
coldwater oysters) and (best) a tapas bar serving pintxos That's
just the Basque word for tapas, but as interpreted by Atrids
chef Michael Gillgan, there's nothing mere about the generous-
ly portioned small plates They range from traditional items like
cod fish equixada (a zingy bacalao salad) and saffron-sauteed
Spanish artichokes to inventve inspirations like foie gras and
goat cheesestuffed empanadas, or Asian-inspired soft-shell
crab in alrytempura batter $$$

Blu Pizzeria e Cucina
900 S. Miami Ave. (Mary Brickell Village)
305-381-8335; www.blurestaurantsgroup.com
More than a mere pzzeria, this spot sports a super-sleek
Upper Eastside (of Manhattan) interior If that's too formal, opt
for a casual patio table while you study the menu over an order
of warm, just-made gnocchett (zeppole-like bread sticks, with
prosciutto and savory fontna fondue dip), or creamy-centered
supply alla romana (porcini-studded tomato and mozzarella
rice croquettes) And don't worry The place looks upscale,
but prices of even the fanciest seafood or veal entrees don't
exceed $20 The fare fashioned by chef Ricardo Tognozzi
(formerly from La Bussola and Oggi) is wide-ranging, but as the
name suggests, you can't go wrong with one of the thin-crusted
brick-oven pizzas, whether a traditional margherita or inventive
asparagi e granchi (with lump crab, lobster cream, mozzarella,
and fresh asparagus) $$-$$$

Caf6 Sambal
500 Brickell Key Dr.
305-913-8358; www.mandarinoriental.com/miami
Though the Mandarin Oriental Hotel describes this space
as its "casual hotel restaurant," many consider it a more
spectacular dining setting than the upscale Azul, upstairs,

owing to the option of dining outdoors on a covered terrace
directly on the waterfront The food is Asian-inspired, with a
few Latin and Mediterranean accents (sushi, plus creative
fusion dishes like tangerine-anise spiced short ribs with scal-
lion pancake, or a tempura-battered snapper sandwich with
lemon aloli) For the health-conscious, the menu includes
low-cal choices For hedonists there's a big selection of arti-
san sakes $$$-$$$$$

Caribbean Delight
236 NE 1st Ave., 305-381-9254
Originally from Jamaica, proprietor Miss Pat has been serv-
ing her traditional homemade island specialties to downtown
office workers and college students since the early 1990s
Most popular item here might be the weekday lunch special
of jerk chicken with festival (sweet-fried cornmeal bread
patties), but even vegetarians are well served with dishes
like a tofu, carrot, and chayote curry All entrees come with
rice and peas, fried plantains, and salad, so no one leaves
hungry doubly true thanks to the home-baked Jamaican
desserts $

Dolores, But You Can Call Me Lolita
1000 S. Miami Ave., 305-403-3103
Its hard to figure why a Mediterranean/Latin restaurant
(with Asian touches) would be named after a line in a 1950s
novel about a New England pedophile But everything else
about this casually stylish spot is easy to understand and
easy on the wallet All entrees cost either $18 or $23, a
price that 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 And all desserts, from tiramisu to mango carpaccio
with lemon creme, are a bargain $2 50 The best seats in
this hip hangout, housed in the old Firehouse 4, are on the
rooftop patio $$$

Fresco California Bistro
1744 SW 3rd Ave., 305-858-0608
This festively decorated indoor/outdoor bistro packs a lot
of party spirit into a small space, a large variety of food
onto its menu, and a very large amount of informal retro
California-style fusion food onto its plates To the familiar
Latin American/Italian equation, the owners add a touch
of Cal-Mex (like Tex-Mex but more health conscious) Menu
offerings range from designer pizzas and pastas to custardy
tamales, but the bistro's especially known for imaginative
meal-size salads, like one featuring mandarin oranges,
avocado, apple, blue cheese, raisins, candied pecans, and
chicken on a mesclun bed $$

Garcia's Seafood Grille and Fish Market
398 NW N. River Dr., 305-375-0765
Run by a fishing family for a couple of generations, this
venerable Florida fish shack is the real thing No wor-
ries about the seafood's freshness, on their way to the
rustic outside dining deck overlooking the Miami River,
diners can view the retail fish market to see what looks
freshest Best preparations, as always when fish is this
fresh, are the simplest When stone crabs are in season,
Garcia's claws are as good as Joe's but considerably
cheaper The local fish sandwich is most popular grou-
per, yellowtail snapper, or mahl mahl, fried, grilled, or
blackened The place is also famous for its zesty smoked-
fish dip and its sides of hushpuppies $-$$

Grimpa Steakhouse
901 S. Miami Ave., 305-455-4757
This expansive indoor/outdoor Brazilian eatery at Brickell

Plaza is more sleekly contemporary than most of Miami's
rodiziojoints, but no worries The classic sword-wielding
gauchos are here, serving a mind-reeling assortment of
skewered beef, chicken, lamb, pork, sausages, and fish -- 16
cuts at dinner, 12 at lunch And included in the price (din-
ner $47, lunch $34) is the traditional belly-busting buffet of
hot and cold prepared foods, salad, cold cuts, and cheeses,
plus additional accompaniments -- like irresistible cheese
bread -- served tableside A pleasant, nontraditional surprise
unusual sauces like sweet/tart passion fruit or mint, tomato-
based BBQ, and mango chutney, along with the ubiquitous
chimichurrl $$$$-$$$$$

II Gabbiano
335 S. Biscayne Blvd., 305-373-0063
Its location at the mouth of the Miami River makes this
ultra-upscale Italian spot (especially the chic outdoor ter-
race) the perfect power lunch/business dinner alternative
for those wanting something beyond steakhouses And
the culinary experience goes way beyond the typical meat
market, thanks in part to the flood of freebies that's a
trademark of Manhattan's II Mulino, originally run by II
Gabbiano's owners (Free starters A generous hunk of
parmegiano-reggiano with aged balsamic dip, assertively
garlicky fried zucchini coins, and tomato-topped brus-
chette) The rest of the food? Pricy, but portions are mam-
moth And the champagne-cream-sauced housemade
ravioli with black truffles? Worth every penny $$$$$

638 S. Miami Ave.
Indochine has succeeded by morphing from mere restau-
rant into hip hangout Copious special events (art openings,
happy hours with DJs, classic movie or karaoke nights,
wine or sake tasting) draw everyone from downtown busi-
ness types to the counterculture crowd Not that there's
anything "mere" about the range of food served from three
Asian nations Light eaters can snack on Vietnamese sum-
mer rolls or Japanese sushi rolls, including an imaginative
masago-coated model with mango, spicy tuna, and cilantro
For bigger appetites, there are Thai curries and Vietnamese
specialties like pho, richly flavored beef soup with meat-
balls, steak slices, rice noodles, and add-in Asian herbs
and sprouts $$-$$$

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

La Loggia Ristorante and Lounge
68 W. Flagler St.
This luxuriantly neo-classical yet warm-feeling Italian res-
taurant was unquestionably a pioneer in revitalizing down-
town, when it first opened, eating options in the courthouse
area were basically a variety of hot dog wagons With
alternatives like amaretto-tinged pumpkin agnolloti in sage
butter sauce, cilantro-spiced white bean/vegetable salad
dressed with truffle oil, and souffle di granchi (crabmeat
souffle atop arugula dressed with honey-mustard vinai-
grette), proprietors Jennifer Porciello and Horatio Oliveira
continue to draw a lunch crowd that returns for dinner, or
perhaps just stays on through the afternoon, fueled by the
Lawyer's Liquid Lunch, a vodka martini spiked with sweet-
ened espresso $$$

Continued on page 48

May 2009 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


Red, White, and You

SAgreeable winefor $12 or less

By Bill Citara
BT Contributor

W hen is cheap not enough? Uh,

when the global economy is
melting down faster than an
ice cream cone on 1-95 on a mid-July
Miami afternoon? Yes.
So in this space's relentless interest
in pinching pennies until they scream,
wail, and beg for mercy, we've goosed
our already skinflint ways a few notches
flintier in preparation for the onslaught
of another South Florida summer. Heat
that will make your face melt, humid-
ity that turns life-giving oxygen into
lungfuls of wet clay, hurricanes ready to
spin-dry your neighborhood and scatter
its pieces from Hialeah to Guam all
reasons most of us use to get out of
Dodge, if only for a few days or weeks.
Not this year, unless a suitcase full of
newly minted Jacksons magically turns
up in our closet. So it looks like we'll be
sticking it out, and we need all the help we
can get. More specifically, all the good, not
just cheap but even cheaper, white wine we
can get. More specifically than that, all the

good white wine we can pour down our
gullets for $9 a bottle or less.
Really, if we're all in this hot, humid,
storm-threatened, recession-ravaged
boat together, it's the least we could do.
Let's start with two terrific deals on
wines that are equally at home sipping in
your dining room with chilled stone crab and
swilling on the beach with your posse. Rene
Barbier's Mediterranean White (nonvin-
tage) is a truly remarkable value at $5.99. A
blend of Spanish varietals, it's simple and
light-bodied, with crisp, refreshing notes
of grapefruit and green apple. Buy it by the
case! You won't be sorry.
For a buck more there's the 2008
Nobilis Vinho Verde, an even lighter
wine with the slight carbonated fizz that's
characteristic of this Portuguese product.
It's only nine percent alcohol, perfect for
drinking on a brutal SoFla summer day.
Also inhabiting the cheap seats are the
2007 Ruffino Orvieto and 2008 Mendoza
Station Torrontes. One of the secrets to
low-cost quaffing is to drink lesser-known
varietals and blends Torrontes, for
example, Argentina's signature white wine
grape. The Mendoza flaunts a fruity, almost

floral nose, with an unexpectedly creamy
texture and faintly sweet citrusy
flavors. The Orvieto is a blend
of Italian mutt grapes but deliv-
ers a fair amount of complexity
- smoky, minerals, tasting of
citrus and pear- for its $6.49
price tag.
At the upper end of
our cheapskate limit
are the 2008 Chateau
Montet White Bor-
deaux and 2007 Villa |,
San Giovanni Pinot
Grigio. Both reveal an-
other secret of drinking
below the radar: Watch
what's on sale. At a
reduced price of $8.99,
these two wines deliver
even more value. The
Montet is classic
Bordeaux Sauvignon
Blanc bracingly crisp,
with intense lemon-lime
and grapefruit flavors and a long, lemony
finish. The San Giovanni drinks like the
more expensive wine it normally is, with

richer, more mouth-filling lemon-lime
and mineral flavors than the usual run of
cut-rate Pinot Grigios.
Getting more than you pay for. Now,
that's change you can believe in.

The Mendoza Station Torrontes,
Nobilis Vinho Verde, and Chateau
Montet White Bordeaux are
available at the North Miami Total
Wine & More for $5.99, $6.99
and $8.99 respectively (14750
Biscayne Blvd., 305-354-3270). The
Ruffino Orvieto can be found at
the Aventura ABC Fine Wine &
Spirits for $6.49 (16355 Biscayne
Blvd., 305-944-6525), the Rene
Barbier Mediterranean White at the
Biscayne Commons Publix (and
other Publix stores) for $5.99 (14641
Biscayne Blvd., 305-354-2171), and
the Villa San Giovanni Pinot Grigio
at Laurenzo's Italian Market for
$8.99 (16385 W. Dixie Hwy., North
Miami Beach, 305-945-6381).

Feedback: letters(@biscaynetimes.com

Restaurant Listings
Continued from page 47

La Moon
144 SW 8th St.,
At four in the morning, nothing quells the post-clubbing
munchies like a Crazy Burger (a heart-stopping Colombian
take on a trucker's burger beef patty bacon, ham, moz-
zarella, lettuce, tomato, and a fried egg, with an arepa corn
pancake bun") unless its a Supermoon perro, a similarly
overloaded hot dog For less dainty eaters, there's a bandeja
paisa, a mountainous construction containing char-grilled
steak, pork belly pork-enriched beans, rice, plantains, eggs,
and arepas One hardly knows whether to eat itor burrow in
to spend the rest of the night While this tiny place's late hours
(till 3 00 a m Thursday 6 00 a m Friday and Saturday) are
surprising, the daytime menu is more so In addition to all the
cholesterol-packed Colombian classics, there's a salad Nicoise
with grilled fresh tuna, seared salmon with mango salsa, and
other yuppie favorites $-$$

Latitude Zero
36 SW 1st St.,
Potted plants are the only sign outside this narrow store-
front that the room inside is worlds more charming than
standard downtown Latin eateries This urban oasis is
an artsy little white-tablecloth place (with alternating red
tablecloths warming up the feel), but with no-tablecloth
prices While much of the menu is Miami's generic Latin
mix, there la a separate Ecuadorlan section that's a playlist
of that country's culinary greatest hits Standouts ence-
bollado, a centuries-old fishermen's soup given national
individuality byyuca and zingy hits of lime, lighter caldo de
bola, veggle-packed broth with plantain dumplings, and
cazuelas, thick layered casseroles of mashed plantains and
tomato-enriched seafood No clue? Try a bandera, a mixed
plate of Ecuador's most distinctive dishes, including shrimp
ceviche $$

Le Boudoir Brickell
188 SE 12th Terr.
At this French bakery/cafe mornings start seriously, with
choices ranging from quality cheese, charcuterle/pate, or
smoked salmon platters to chic Continental and complete
American breakfasts -- with baguettes, croissants, and
other authentic housemade breads, natch At lunch, gener-
ously salad-garnished, open-faced tartines are irresistible
(artichoke/tapenade, foie gras, saucisson and French
butter on an ultra-crusty imported sourdough slice) But
sophisticated salads and homemade soups make the
choice tough And do not skip dessert Superb sweets
include rich almond/fresh raspberry or properly tangy
lemon tarts, traditional Madelelnes, airy layered mousses,
and addictive mini-macaroon sandwich cookies with daily-
changing fillings $-$$

Manny's Steakhouse
300 S. Biscayne Blvd.
M Night Shyamalan couldn't have come up with more obvious
irony Located directly opposite Prime Blue Grille, Miami's most
intentionally female-friendly steakhouse (light decor, lightened
dishes), is Mannys, Miami's most intentionally masculine steak-
house Here, ensconced in your black leather booth, everything
is humongous dry-aged choice-grade steaks like the Bludgeon
of Beef (a boldlyflavorful 40ounce bone-in rlbeye, 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 Notfor the
frail $$$$$

1414 Brickell Ave., 305-403-0900
For those who think Argentine cuisine" is a synonym for
beef and more beef," this popular eaters wide range
of more cosmopolitan contemporary Argentine fare will
be a revelation Classic parrilla-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 jalapenos, basil, and the refreshing
sweet counterpoint of watermelon), or crab ravioli with
creamy saffron sauce Especially notable are entree salads
like the signature Ensalada Novecento skirt steak slices
(cooked to order) atop mixed greens coated in rich mustard
vinaigrette with a side of housemade fries $$-$$$

Oceanaire Seafood Room
900 S. Miami Ave.
With a dozen branches nationwide, Oceanaire may seem
more All-American seafood empire than Florida fish
shack But while many dishes (including popular sides like
bacon-enriched hash browns and fried green tomatoes)
are identical at all Oceanaires, menus vary significantly
according to regional tastes and fish Here in Miami, chef
Sean Bernal (formerly at Merrick Park's Pescado) supple-
ments 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 pompa-
no, parrot fish, amberjack But even flown-in fish (and the
raw bar's cold-water oysters) are ultra-fresh $$$$

1414 Brickell Ave.
The original branch on Miami Beach's Lincoln Road was
instantly popular, and the same healthy Middle Eastern fast
food made with no trans fats or other nutritional nasties
- is served at the three newer outlets The prices are low
enough that one might suspect Pasha's was conceived as a
tax write-off rather than a Harvard Business School project,
which it was by founders Antonio Ellek and Nicolas Cortes
Dishes range from common classics like falafel and gyros to
more unusual items like muhammara (tangy walnut spread),
silky labneh yogurt cheese, and chicken adana kebabs with
grilled veggies and aloli sauce Everything from pltas to lem-
onade is made fresh, from scratch, daily $-$$

Peoples Bar-B-Que
360 NW 8th St., 305-3738080
Oak-smoked, falling-off-the-bone tender barbecued ribs
(enhanced with a secret sauce whose recipe goes back
several generations) are the main draw at this Overtown
institution But the chicken is also a winner, plus there's
a full menu of soul food entrees, including what many afi-
clonados consider our town's tastiest souse Sides include
collards, yams, and soft mac and cheese And it would be
unthinkable to call it quits without homemade sweet potato
pie or banana pudding, plus a bracing flop half iced tea,
half lemonade $-$$

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

Prime Blue Grille
315 S. Biscayne Blvd., Miami
This truly 21st-century steakhouse targets today health-
minded gourmets by serving only certified-organic Brandt
beef antibiotic- and hormone-free, as well as dry-aged,
butchered in-house, and smoke-seared by Prime Blue's
intense wood-burning grills and ovens For noncarnivores,
the menu gives equal time to fish, all caught wild, and offers
dozens of cooked vegetable and salad options, including

Continued on page 49

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May 2009


Restaurant Listings

Continued from page 48

build-your-own There's also a raw bar and a small steak/
seafood retail counter The decor is as modern as the menu
Instead of the stuffy men's club look, you have a soaring,
light-hued, open-plan, indoor/outdoor space, with panoramic
Miami River view $$$$

Provence Grill
1001 S. Miami Ave., 305-373-1940
The cozy, terracotta-tiled dining room (and even more
charming outdoor dining terrace) indeed evoke the south
of France But the menu of French bistro classics covers
all regions, a Greatest Hits of French comfort food country-
style pate mason with onion jam, roasted peppers and cor-
nichons, steak/frites (grilled rib-eye with peppercorn cream
sauce, fries, and salad), four preparations of mussels, a
tarte tatin (French apple tart with roasted walnuts, served a
la mode) Deal alert An early-bird prlx-fixe menu (5 30-7 30
p m ) offers soup or salad, entree, dessert, and a carafe of
wine for $44 per couple $$$-$$$$

The River Oyster Bar
650 S. Miami Ave., 305-530-1915
This casually cool Miami River-area 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 still find it difficult to resist stuffing them-
selves silly on the unusually large selection of bivalves (often
ten varieties per night), especially since oysters are served
both raw and cooked fire-roasted with sofrito butter, cho-
rlzo, and manchego To accompany these delights, there's a
thoughtful wine list and numerous artisan beers on tap $$$

Rosa Mexicano
900 S. Miami Ave., 786-425-1001
A branch of the original Rosa Mexicano that introduced New
Yorkers to real Mexican food (not Tex-Mex) in 1984, this

expansive indoor/outdoor space offers a dining experience
that's haute in everything but price Few entrees top $20
The decor is both date-worthy and family-friendly festive
but not kitschy And nonsophisticates needn't fear, though
nachos aren't available, there is nothing scary about zarape
de pato (roast duck between freshly made, soft corn tortillas,
topped with yellow-and-habanero-pepper cream sauce), or
Rosa's signature guacamole en molcajete, made tableside A
few pomegranate margaritas ensure no worries $$$

Soya & Pomodoro
120 NE 1st St., 305-381-9511
Life is complicated Food should be simple Thats owner
Armando Alfano's philosophy which is stated above the entry
to his atmospheric downtown eatery And since its also the
formula for the truest traditional Italian food (Alfano hails from
Pompeii), its fitting that the menu is dominated by authent-
cally straightforward yet sophisticated Italian entrees such as
spinach- and ricotta-stuffed crepes with bechamel and tomato
sauces There are salads and sandwiches, too, including one
soy burger tojustify the other half of the place's name The
most enjoyable place to dine is the secret, open-air courtyard,
completely hidden from the street Alfano serves dinner on
Thursday only to accompany his Thursday Night Live" events
featuring local musicians and artists $-$$

Taste of Bombay
111 NE 3rd Ave.; 305-358-0144
No surprise that a place called Taste of Bombay would
be an Indian restaurant And depending mostly on the
predominant nationalities of downtown construction work-
ers at any given time, Taste of Bombay has also served
sushi, Philippine, and Chinese food Best bet, though, is
the all-you-can-eat Indian buffet lunch spread, featuring
six changing entrees (a mix of meat, poultry, fish, and veg-
etable curries) plus veggie pakoras, rice, salad, chutneys,
hot naan bread, and a dessert The place looks plain out-
side, but its pleasantly exotic enough inside for a bargain
business lunch $$

Tobacco Road
626 S. Miami Ave., 305-374-1198
Prohibition-era speakeasy (reputedly a fave of Al Capone),

gay bar, strip club Previously all these, this 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 chill, budget-priced steaks, and
burgers, including the mega-mega burger, a trucker-style
monster topped with said chill plus cheddar, mushrooms,
bacon, and a fried egg There's also surprisingly elegant
fare, though, like a Norwegian salmon club with lemon
aioli A meat-smoker in back turns out tasty ribs, perfect
accompaniment to the blues $$


Adelita's Caf6
2699 Biscayne Blvd.
From the street (which is actually NE 26th, not Biscayne)
this Honduran restaurantseems unpromising, but inside it's
bigger, better, and busier than it looks Unlike many Latin
American eateries, which serve a multinational melange, this
one sticks close to the source and proves a crowd-pleaser On
weekends especially, the two casual dining rooms are packed
with families enjoying authentic fare like baleadas (thick corn
tacos), tajadas (Hondurass take on tostones), rich meal-in-
a-bowl soups packed with seafood or meat and veggies, and
more To spend ten bucks on a meal here, one would have to
be a sumo wrestler $

2010 Biscayne Blvd.
At this Indian eatery the decor is date-worthy, with the typical
garish brass/tapestry/elephants everywhere replaced by a
cool, contemporary ambiance muted gray and earth-tone
walls, tasteful burgundy banquettes And the menu touts
Modern Indian Cuisine" to match the look Classicists,
however, needn't worry Some dishes' names are unfamil-
iar, but America's favorite familiar north Indian flavors are
here, though dishes are generally more mildly spiced and
presented with modern flair Definitely don't miss starting
with salad-garnished Deshl Samosas (which come with ter-
rific cllantro/mint dip) or ending with mango kulf., Indian ice

milk All meats are certified halal, Islam's version of kosher
- which doesn't mean that observant orthodox Jews can eat
here, but Muslims can $$$

Bin No. 18
1800 Biscayne Blvd.
At this wine bar/cafe, located on the ground floor of one of
midtown's new mixed-use condo buildings, the decor is a
stylish mix of contemporary cool (high loft ceilings) and Old
World warmth (tables made from old wine barrels) Cuisine
is similarly geared to the area's new smart, upscale resi-
dents 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, Venezuelan-born chef Alfredo
Patinos former executive chef gigs at Bizcaya (at the Ritz-
Carlton Coconut Grove) and other high-profile venues are
evident in sophisticated snacks like the figciutto, a salad
of arugula, gorgonzola dolce, caramelized onions, pine
nuts, fresh figs, and prosciutto Free parking in a fenced
lot behind the building $$

Bleu Moon
1717 N. Bayshore Dr.
Deep inside the Doubletree Grand, this restaurant,
which has panoramic Biscayne Bay views and an
outdoor deck, is one of the few upscale dinner spots
near the Arsht Center for the Performing Arts The
eclectic menu is more Mediterranean than anything
else, from old-fashioned favorites like lasagna to
contemporary creations like gnocchi with sun-dried
tomatoes, sweet pea puree, pine nuts, and ricotta
salata But a few seafood sauces reflect Asian influ-
ences, and tropical Latin touches abound Some of
the most charming dishes are modernized American,
and done well enough to make you nostalgic for
1985 creamy (but not gunky) lobster bisque, lump
crab cake with fried capers, and a retro arugula
salad with caramelized walnuts, bacon, gorgonzola,
fresh berries, and raspberry vinaigrette $$$$

Continued on page 50

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May 2009


Restaurant Listings
Continued from page 49

163 NE 39th St.
The reputation that Arthur Artile amassed after years
as executive chef at Norman's and Chispa has made
the Design Districts Brosia an instant hit The menu is
Mediterranean-inspired, with a few items like gazpacho
Caprese fusing cuisines, but most retaining regional
individuality Moroccan mussels in curry broth, shrimp
and clams (with garlic, chorizo, and sherry) that scream
Spainl" The stylish space is a draw, too Inside, all mahog-
any, leather, and luxuriant intimacy, outside, seating on an
extensive patio shaded by a canopy of old oaks And the
convenient all-day hours (even breakfast) give it the feel of
a real neighborhood restaurant $$$

Buena Vista Bistro
4582 NE 2nd Ave., 305-456-5909
If a neighborhood eatery like this one -- which serves
supremely satisfying Italian, American, and French bistro
food -- were within walking distance of every Miami resident,
we'd be a helluva hip food town Located in the intimate
space that formerly housed Restaurant A, its the love child
of Quebequoise chef Claude Postel and his wife Callie, who
runs the front of the house with exuberantly friendly charm
Like true Parisian bistros, its open continuously, every day
(until midnightl, with prices so low (starters $5-8, entrees
$8-15) that one really can drop in anytime for authentic nl-
lettes (a scrumptious spiced meat spread, like a rustic pate)
with a crusty baguette, steak with from-scratch frites, salmon
atop ratatouille, or many changing blackboard specials
Portions are plentiful So is free parking And its well worth
a drive $$

Captain Joe Seafood & Pasta Grill
3401 N. Miami Ave. (Shops at Midtown)
No matter if your splurge in the Shops at Midtown Miami
begins at 8 00 a m and ends at 10 00 p m This eatery
will be there for you, with eggs, pancakes, French toast,
and bagels till 1100 a m After that it's a seafood-ori-
ented menu of fast-casual food, like a more upscale and
more regional version of Long John Silver's Best values
are combo platters (served with choice of two Latin or
All-American sides) such as shrimp and a grilled kebab, a
hefty fried or grilled fish sandwich, or a Caribbean paella
The last is more like a pilaf than Spain's saffron-rich
creation, but is packed with enough mussels, fish, cala-
marn chicken, and small shrimp to feed two There are
also more than a half-dozen specials (chicken, shrimp, or
veggle-topped pastas) served from 4 00-9 00 p m daily,
all for under seven bucks $

3612 NE 2nd Ave., 305-576-7877
This Design District old-timer has hung on for close
to 20 years as the District has gone through its mood
swings But it's no worse for the wear The upstairs/
downstairs space looks good as new, and is still almost
impossibly cute The menu, chalked daily on a black-
board, still features well more than a dozen typical
French bistro specials like chicken Dijonaise or almond-
crusted trout in creamy, lemony beurre blanc And the
salads, soups, and sandwiches are still, invariably,

evocative Rough-cut pate de champagne, topped with
cornichons on a crusty buttered baguette is an instant
trip to Paris Though weekend nighttime hours were
instituted several years ago, dinner is an on-again, off-
again thing, so call first $$-$$$

The Daily Creative Food Co.
2001 Biscayne Blvd., 305-573-4535
While the food formula of this contemporary cafe is familiar -
sandwiches, salads, soups, breakfast food, and pastries, plus
coffee and fruit drinks a creative concept differentiates the
place Signature sandwiches are named after national and local
newspapers (like the Biscayne Times tuna salad with hummus,
cucumber, roasted peppers, arugula, and sprouts on multigrain
bread), giving diners something to chat about For those who'd
rather Have It Their Own Way both sandwiches and salads
can be do-it-yourself projects, with an unusually wide choice of
main ingredients, garnishes, breads, and condiments for the
creatively minded $

Delicias Peruanas
2590 Biscayne Blvd., 305-573-4634
Seafood is the specialty at this pleasant Peruvian spot,
as it was at the original Delicias, run by members of the
same family, eight blocks north on the Boulevard There
are differences here, notably karaoke on weekends and a
kitchen that doesn't shut down till the wannabe American
Idols shut up, around 2 00 a m But the food is as tasty as
ever, especially the reliably fresh traditional ceviches, and
for those who like their fish tangy but cooked, a mammoth
jalea platter (lightly breaded, fried seafood under a blanket
of marinated onions the fish and chips of your dreams) As
for nonseafood stuff, no one who doesn't already know that
Peru practically invented fusion cuisine (in the 1800s) will
doubt, after sampling two traditional noodle dishes tallerin
saltado (Chinese-Peruvian beef or chicken lo meln) or tallerin
verde (Ital-Latin noodles with pesto and steak) $$

18th Street Caf6
210 NE 18th St.
305-381-8006; www.l8thstreetcafe.com
Most of the seating in this cool little breakfast/lunch room
is in a sort of giant bay window, backed with banquettes,
that makes the space feel expansively light-filled, and quite
nicely gentrifles its whole evolving Midtown block This
pioneering place deserves to survive, even if just consider-
ing the roast beef sandwich with creamy horseradish an
inspired classic combination that makes one wonder why
more places in this town don't serve it (We'll debate later)
Other culinary highlights of the classic Six S" repertoire
(soups, sandwiches, salads, sweets, smoothies, specials)
might include a turkey/pear/cheddar melt sandwich, and
really sinful marshmallow-topped brownies $

Five Guys Famous Burger and Fries
3401 N. Miami Ave. (Shops at Midtown)
Like the West Coasts legendary In-N-Out Burger chain, this
East Coast challenger serves no green-leaf faux health food
You get what the name says, period, with three adds kosher
dogs, veggie burgers, and free peanuts while you wait
Which you will, just a bit, since burgers are made fresh upon
order, not steam-tabled Available in double or one-patty
sizes, they re well-done but spurtingly juicy, and after loading
with your choice of 15 free garnishes, even a little" burger
makes a major meal Fries (regular or Cajun-spiced) are also
superior, hand-cut in-house from sourced potatoes, a chang-
ing sign reports the spuds' point of origin $

Fratelli Lyon
4141 NE 2nd Ave.
305-572-2901; www.fratellilyon.com
This Italian cafe has been packed since the moment it opened
No surprise to any who recall owner Ken Lyon's pioneering Lyon
Freres gourmet store on pre-gentrifled Lincoln Road (1992-97),
another joint that was exactly what its neighborhood needed
The restaurants artisan salumi, cheeses, flavorful boutique
olive oils, and more on the Ingredient-driven menu are so out-
standing that one can't help wishingthis restaurant also had a
retail component Well, maybe later Meanwhile console your-
self with the sort of salamis and formagg you II never find in
the supermarket (as well as rare finds like culatello prosciutto
royalty), including a mixed antipasto esplosione that would feed
Rhode Island Entrees include properly al dente pastas, plus
some regional specialties like Venetian-style calves liver, rarely
found outside Italy $$$

28 NE 40th St.; 305-573-3355
After a couple of years in hiatus, this Design District restolounge
has reopened in the same outdoor courtyard space What's
new MediterAsian" chef Michael Jacobs and a menu that trav-
els beyond pan-Asian and Mediterranean influences into the
Americas Entrees range from lowbrow comfort food (cunningly
reinvented mini pot pies) to high-status extravagance (stone-
seared, authentic Kobe steak) For healthy grazers, raw-bar
selections include ceviches and a large seafood platter (lobster,
shrimp, and lump crab with housemade dipping sauces)
Theres also a snack menu (pristine coldwater oysters, a crab
salad timbale, parmesan-truffle shoestring fries, mini-Kobe
burgers) served tll the wee hours, providing a welcome alterna-
tivetothe Boulevard's fast food chains $$-$$$$$

Joey's Italian Caf6
2506 NW 2nd Ave.
The first new restaurant in the Wynwood Cafe District, this
stylish indoor/outdoor Italian hangout is as casually cool
as one would hope -- and as affordable The highest ticket
items are $24 lamb chops with balsamic reduction, and a
few $1000 wines For starving artists, there's 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 creative Dolce e Piccante (with figs,
gorgonzola, honey, and hot pepper) or orgasmic Carbonara
(mozzarella, pancetta, asparagus, and eggs) There are
also numerous surprise specials, as the energetic young
chef from Italy's Veneto region changes the menu twice
daily Pastas are fresh, produce is largely local, the mosaic-
centered decor is minimalist but inviting And no need to
be wary of the warehouse district at night Valet parking is
free $$-$$$

Kafa Caf6
3535 NE 2nd Ave.
Opened in late 2007 by a brother/sister team (both originally
from Ethiopia, via San Francisco), this casual spot is located
in the stylish indoor/outdoor, multi-roomed Midtown space
formerly housing Uva and Stop Miami Nothing on the break-
fast and lunch menus tops $8, and portions feed an army (or
several starving artists) Signature item is the formidable Kafa
Potato Platter -- a mountain of wondrously textured home fries
mixed with bacon, ham, peppers, onion, and cheese, eggs
(any style), fresh fruit, and bread accompany Lunch's burg-
ers, salads, and overstuffed sandwiches (like the roast beef
supreme, a melt with sauteed mushrooms, onion, sour cream,

and cheddar on sourdough) come with homemade soup
or other sides, plus fruit Notfull yet? The pair has recently
expanded to include night hours with an authentic Ethiopian
dinner menu, plus beer and wine selections $-$$

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

Lemoni Caf6
4600 NE 2nd Ave.
The menu here reads like your standard sandwiches/
salads/starters primer What it doesn't convey is the spar-
kling freshness of the ingredients and the care that goes
into constructing these mostly healthy snacks Entree-size
salads range from an elegant spinach salad (with goat
cheese, pears, walnuts, and raisins) to chunky homemade
chicken salad on a bed of mixed greens a hefty help-
ing of protein without typical dell-style mayo overload
Sandwiches (cold baguette subs, hot pressed paninis, or
wraps, all accompanied by side salads) include a respect-
able Cuban, but the deceptively rich-tasting light salad
cream that dresses a veggie wrap might tempt even hard-
core cholesterol fans to stick with the sprouts $-$$

Lime Fresh Mexican Grill
14831 Biscayne Blvd., 305-949-8800
Like its South Beach predecessor, this Lime was an instant
hit, as much for being a hip hangout as for its carefully
crafted Tex-Mex food Though Lime is now franchising, the
chain's concept is fast casual" rather than fast food -
meaning nice enough for a night out It also means ingredi-
ents aren't canned-type crapola Seafood tacos are about as
exotic as the standard menu gets, but the mahl mahl for fish
tacos comes fresh, never frozen, from a local supplier, and
salsas are housemade daily Niceties include low-carb torti-
llas for dieters and many Mexican beers for partiers $

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

Maino Churrascaria
2201 Biscayne Blvd.
This very upscale Brazilian steakhouse has all the fea-
tures one expects at a rodizio-style restaurant, including

Continued on page 51




650 S. MIAMI AVE. 1 305.530.1915


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May 2009


Restaurant Listings
Continued from page 50

all-you-can-eat meats carved tableside and a lavish buffet
of salads, sides, salumi, and hot prepared dishes What
sets Maino apart from typical rodlzlo palaces is its family-
run feel, intimate rather than intimidating, plus its attention
to every detail (immediately obvious in the classy rustic/
elegant decor, highlighted by striking onyx accents -- bars,
tabletops, and more) While it's rare at most rodizio joints
to get meat done less than medium, Maino's eager-to-
please servers here are happy to convey custom-cooking
preferences to the kitchen -- and they re English-speaking,
too One other welcome difference As well as the one-price
(hefty) feast, there are a la carte starters and pastas for
lighter eaters and noncarnivores, and some lunch specials
Free parking, too $$-$$$$$

Mario the Baker
250 NE 25th St.
(See North Miami listing)

Michael's Genuine Food and Drink
130 NE 40th St.
Long-awaited and an instant smash hit, this truly
neighborhood-oriented restaurant from Michael Schwartz,
founding chef of Nemo's in South Beach, offers down-to-
earth fun food in a comfortable, casually stylish indoor/
outdoor setting Fresh, organic ingredients are empha-
sized, but dishes range from cutting-edge (crispy beef
cheeks with whipped celeriac, celery salad, and chocolate
reduction) to simple comfort food deviled eggs, home-
made potato chips with pan-fried onion dip, or a whole
wood-roasted chicken There's also a broad range of pric-
es and portion sizes ($4-$8 for snacks and small plates
to $24-$39 for extra-large plates) to encourage frequent
visits from light-bite as well as pig-out diners Michael's
Genuine also features an eclectic and affordable wine list,
and a full bar, with cut-rate weekday happy hour cocktails

Mike's at Venetia
555 NE 15th St., 9th floor, 305-374-5731
There's no sign out front, butthis family-owned Irish pub,
on the pool deck of a waterfront condo building across
from the Miami Herald, for more than 15 years has been a
popular lunch and dinner hang-outfor local journalists and
others who appreciate honest cheap eats and drinks (not to
mention a billiard table and 17 TV screens) Regulars know
daily specials are the way to go Depending on the day, fish,
churrasco, or roast turkey with all the trimmings are all pre-
pared fresh Big burgers and steak dinners are always good,
and happy hour appetizers (like meaty Buffalo wings) are
always half-price Additionally, a limited late-night menu pro-
vides pizza, wings, ribs, and salad till 3 00 a m $-$$

3221 NE 2nd Ave., 786-953-8003
Ultra-thin, crisp-crusted pizzas as good as Piola's in South
Beach Made-from-scratch daily specials like green bean
and parmesan soup, or prosciutto and mozzarella-stuffed
gnocchi that you really have not seen on every other menu in
town A homemade white chocolate/raspberry cake, choco-
late ganache cake, and other pastries to die for High-quality
ingredients, wine and beer, low prices, enthusiastic hands-on
owners committed to arts-oriented creativity A comfortable
hang-out atmosphere This tiny cafe, where "processed food"
is a dirty word, has it all except a high-visibility location or
media hype So discover it for yourselves (There's ample
free street parking, too) $-$$

Orange Caf6 + Art
2 NE 40th St., 305-571-4070
The paintings hanging in this tiny, glass-enclosed cafe
are for sale And for those who don't have thousands of
dollars to shell out for the local art on the walls, less than
ten bucks will get you art on a plate, including a Picasso
chorizo, prosciutto, manchego cheese, baby spinach,
and basil on a crusty baguette Other artfully named and
crafted edibles include salads, daily soups, several pastas
(like the Matisse, flocchi pouches filled with pears and
cheese), and house-baked pastries $

Out of the Blue Caf6
2426 NE 2nd Ave., 305-573-3800
Forget impersonal chain coffeehouses This artist-
friendly, independent neighborhood cafe serves a full
selection of coffee drinks made with the award-winning
beans of Intelligentsia, a roasting company that works
directly with artisan growers to encourage sustainable
agriculture and one helluva good cup of java Also
served breakfast and lunch sandwiches, imagina-
tive salads, soups, homemade pastries and creamy
fresh-fruit smoothies With tables, sofas, and lounge
chairs inside an old Midtown house, plus free wireless
Internet access, the space is also just a pleasant place
to hang out Owner Carmen Miranda (real name) says
beer and wine will soon be available $

Pacific Time
35 NE 40th St.
Everyone knows Jonathan Eismann's original, now-defunct
Pacific Time, for many years Lincoln Road's only serious
contemporary restaurant The question is How different
is its new incarnation? Very, and it's all good, starting with
far superior acoustics (no more voice-shredding conversa-
tionsl), an admirably green ecological policy, and a neigh-
borhood-friendly attitude (including kid-oriented dishes,
plus continuous service of inventive small plates and bar
snacks) The food is also more intriguing simultaneously
complexly refined and accessibly clean While the addition
of Mediterranean influences to PT's former Pacific Rim
menu may sound confusing on paper, trust us A meal
that includes a butter-grilled asparagus with prosciutto,
soft-cooked egg Milanese, and preserved lemon, plus an
Asian-accented creamy corn/leek soup with Peeky Toe
crab dumplings, coriander, and mustard oil makes perfect
sense on the tongue $$-$$$$

3801 N. Miami Ave.
(See Brickell/Downtown listing)

2905 NE 2nd Ave., 305-573-0900
Those seeking dainty designer pizzas can fuhgeddaboudit here
Atthis New York-style pizzeria (which has roughlythe same
menu as North Beach's original Pizzaflore, but independent
ownership), its all about heftiness A special slice/soda deal
features two pizza triangles bigger than most Miami mini-
skirts Whole pies come medium (large), large (huge), and
extra-large (think truck tire) And with fully loaded pizzas like
the Supreme Meat Lover priced only a few bucks more than
a basic tomato/ cheese, it pays to think big about toppings
too Other Italian-American fare is also available, notably pas-
tas and subs $-$$

1717 N. Bayshore Dr., 305-371-9055
Relatively few people except hotel guests and condo resi-
dents are familiar with the Grand's restaurants (except for
Tony Chan's) The imposing, cavernous lobby just doesn't
have that "do drop in" locals' hangout vibe But this lively
Italian spot is actually a great addition to the neighbor-
hood The pizzas alone brick-oven specimens with top-
pings ranging from classic pepperoni to trendy prosciutto/
arugula would be draw enough But pastas are also
planned to please diners' choice of starch, with mix-and-
match sauces and extras And the price is right, with few
entrees (whether traditional veal piccata or seared ahi
tuna) topping $20 The capper Its open past midnight
everyday but Sunday $$

Sake Room
275 NE 18th St., 305-755-0122
Sake takes a back seattosushi and sophisticated decor at
this small but sleek restolounge, which offers South Beach
sophistication without the prices or attitude, thanks to charm-
ing proprietor Maro Cicilia Among the seafood offerings, you
won'tfind exotca or local catches, but all the usual sush/
sashimi favorites are here, but in more interesting form, thanks
to sauces that go beyond standard soy spicysrlracha, garlic/
ponzu oil, and many more Especially recommended theyuzu
hamachi roll (chopped Pacific yellowtail with scallions, sesame,

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May 2009


Restaurant Listings
Continued from page 51

roe, citrusy dressing, and refreshing shiso leaf), the lobster
tempura maki (with veggies, chive oil, and an oddly wonderful
tomato sauce), and panko-coated spicy shrimp with hot-and-
sour mayo and a salad $$-$$$

S & S Diner
1757 NE 2nd Ave.
Some things never change, or so it seems atthis diner, which is
so classic it verges on cliche Open since 1938, its still popular
enough that people line up on Saturday morning, waiting for
a seat at the horseshoeshaped counter (there are no tables)
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, all in mountainous portions The lunch menu is a roll
call of the usual suspects, but most regulars ignore the menu
and go for the daily blackboard specials $-$$

Sra. Martinez
4000 NE 2nd Ave.
No Biscayne Corridor resident needs to be told that this lively
tapas bar, in the historic former Buena Vista Post Office, is
the second restaurant that Upper Eastside homegrrrl Michelle
Bernstein has opened in the area But know this Its not one
of her absentee celebrity-chef gigs She is hands-on at both
places on any given night Bernsteln's exuberant yet firmly
controlled personal touch is obvious in nearly four dozen hot
and cold tapas that, except for a few conventional entrees for
diehards, make up the whole menu Items are frequently rein-
vented, depending on seasonal ingredients and diner feedback
Keepers include wild mushroom/manchego croquetas with fig
jam (different from Michys, but equally flawless), white bean
stew (duck/fole gras sausage and favas in an intense port wine
reduction crisp-coated artichokes with lemon/coriander dip,
simple but addictive Padron-style shishito peppers, and buttery
bone marrow piqued with Middle Eastern spices and balanced
by tny pickled salads $$$

Tony Chan's Water Club
1717 N. Bayshore Dr.
The decor atthis upscale place, located in the Grand, a huge bay-
side condo/resort hotel, looks far too gltzy to serve anything but
politely Americanized Chinese food The presentation is indeed
elegant but the American dumbing dishes are far more authentic and skillfully prepared than those
found elsewhere in Miami, like delicate butflavorful yu pan quail
(minced with mushrooms in lettuce cups) Moistsea bass fillet
has a beautifully balanced topping of scallion, gnger, cilantro,
and subtly sweet/saltysauce And Peking duck is served as three
traditional courses crepewrapped crispy skin, meatsauteed with
crisp veggies, savory soup to finish $$-$$$

W Wine Bistro
3622 NE 2nd Ave., 305-576-7775
Both bistro and retail wineshop, this Design District spot is
run by Florent Blanchet, an energetic young Frenchman who
was previously a wine distributor His former gig led to connec-
tions that mean if wine lovers don't find the bottle they want
in W's selection of roughly 200-labels (which emphasizes bou-
tique and organic growers), Blanchet can probably get it within
24 hours Food is sophisticated light bites like a shrimp club
sandwich with pancetta and sun-dried tomato aioli, smoked

duck salad with goat cheese croutons and a poached egg,
and chocolate fondant At night there are tapas $-$$

Zuperpollo Biztro Reztocafe
3050 Biscayne Blvd.
Occasionally there's a sign out front of the office building
housing this bistro, indicating that a branch of the popular
Uruguayan eatery Zuperpollo (on Coral Way, since 1986) is
within Otherwise, since the restaurant opened in 2006, locals
have basically had to intuit its presence way in back, past a
guard desk and an elevator bank, behind an unmarked door
Once there, diners discover an extensive pan-Latin menu of
breakfast food, salads, substantial meat and fish entrees,
homemade pastas and soups, desserts, and sandwiches,
including Uruguays famed chivito, sometimes called "a heart
attack on a bun" beef, bacon, ham, eggs, mozzarella, plus
sauteed mushrooms and red peppers And naturally, from the
rotissere, there's the signature zuper chicken $-$$

Upper Eastside

5600 Biscayne Blvd.
Sharing a building with a long-established Morningside car
wash, Andiamo is also part of Mark Soyka's 55th Street
Station which means ditching the car (in the complex's
free lot across the road on NE 4th Court) is no problem even
if you re not getting your vehicle cleaned while consuming
the brick-oven pies (from a flaming open oven) that are this
popular pizzeria's specialty Choices range from the simple
namesake Andiamo (actually a Margherita) to the Godfather,
a major meat monster Extra toppings like arugula and goat
cheese enable diners to create their own designer pies Also
available are salads and panini plus reasonably priced wines
and beers (including a few unusually sophisticated selections
like Belgium's Hoegaarden) $$

Anise Taverna
620 NE 78th St.
In the past 15 years this river shack has housed at least five
different restaurants Now new owners Liza and Gigi are bank-
ing on G reek food and festvity being the concept that stcks
-- a good bet, judging from their wildly popular previous eatery,
Ouzo The mainly mezze menu ranges from traditional Greek
small plates like the pikilia (combo dip plate of tzatziki, tarama,
hummus, and smoky eggplant puree) or tender grilled octopus
to creative Mediterranean-inspired dishes (like anise-scented
fish croquettes with spicy aioli) that never stray too far from
the fold to remain evocative But don't neglect large plates like
whole grilled Mediterranean fish (dorade or branzino), filleted
tableside The interior decor is charming and the outdoor deck
on the Little River is positively romantic $$-$$$

916 NE 79th St., 305-757-7735
This strip of 79th Street, formerly known for its live bait and
auto repair shops, is rapidly becoming a cool alt-culture
enclave thanks to inviting hangouts like this rustic indoor/out-
door 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
Brazil's national dish, feijoada, a savory stew of beans plus

fresh and cured meats But the everyday menu, ranging from
unique, tapas-like pastels (shrimp and hearts of palm-stuffed
turnovers) to hefty Brazilian entrees, is also appealing and
budget-priced $$

Le Caf6
7295 Biscayne Blvd., 305-754-6551
For anyone who can't get over thinking of French food as
intimidating or pretentious, this cute cafe with a warm
welcome, and family-friendly French home cooking, is the
antidote No fancy food (or fancy prices) here, just classic
comfort food like onion soup, escargot, daily fresh oysters,
boeuf bourguignon (think Ultimate Pot Roast), Nicoise salad,
quiche, and homemade creme brulee A respectable beer
and wine list is a welcome addition, as is the housemade
sangria Top price for entrees is about $14 $-$$

5132 Biscayne Blvd., 305-756-3930
When this atmospheric little neighborhood oasis opened,
the formula was Cuban cooking at lunch, Catalan tapas
at night The menu is now more uniform contemporary
Spanish and pan-Latin tapas, sandwiches, salads, sides,
and entrees at all hours, just a far more elaborate selec-
tion at night The tapas list is especially impressive, with
all the usual Hispanic meat and cheese favorites but also
an unusually large selection of seafood and vegetarian
items such as espinaca a la catalafa (spinach sauteed
with pine nuts and raisins) Must-not-miss Items include
ultra-creamy croquetas (ham, cheese, chicken, spinach,
or bacalao), grilled asparagus with aioli, and habit-forming
Brazilian cheese bread $-$$$

Captain Crab's Take-Away
1100 NE 79th St., 305-754-2722
The drive-through window says "fast food," and so do this
long-lived seafood shack's low prices And indeed there are
three Captain Crab's Take-Aways (the others are in Carol City
and Fort Lauderdale), all related to the sit-down Crab House
restaurants But there the resemblance to McFauxFood ends
For about the price of a bucket of the Colonels chicken you
can get a bucket of the Captain's savory garlic crabs The
Kngs burger meal or the Captain's similarly priced fried (or
garlic boiled or New Orleans-spiced) shrimp meal? No contest
Also popular crab cakes and conch (fried or in fritters and
chowder) For fish haters, spicy or garlic chicken wings are an
option, for kids, cut-price "first mate" meals $-$$

Casa Toscana
7001 Biscayne Blvd., 305-758-3353
Tuscan-born chef/owner Sandra Stefani cooked at Norman's
(and briefly ran the Indian Creek Hotel's restaurant) before
opening this Upper Eastside jewel, a wine market/eatery
whose 30 original seats have been supplemented by a wine
room/garden for tastng events and private dining Stefani
travels regularlyto Italy to find exciting, limited-production
wines and inspiration for truly Tuscan-tasting daily special
dishes with honest, authentic flavors, such as grilled wild boar
sausages with lentil croquettes Favorites that show up often
on the menu include pear and ricotta raviolini with sage but-
ter sauce, grilled eggplant slices rolled around herbed goat
cheese and sun-dried tomatoes, and a light ricotta tart with
lemon and rosemary $$$

Che Sopranos
7251 Biscayne Blvd., 305-754-8282
This branch of a Miami Beach Italian/Argentine pizzeria, housed
in a charming bungalow and featuring a breezy patio, covers

multicultural bases If the Old World Rucola pizza (a classic
Margherlta topped with arugula, prosciutto, and shredded
parmesan) doesn't do the trick, the New World Especial (a Latin
pie with hearts of palm and boiled eggs) just might Also avail-
able are pastas, salads, sandwiches, dinner entrees (eggplant
parmigiana with spaghetti, lomito steak with Argentinean potato
salad), and desserts (tramisu or flan) $

Chef Creole
200 NW 54th St.
Sparkling fresh Creole-style food is the star at chef/owner
Wilkinson Sejour's two tiny but wildly popular establish-
ments While some meatier Haitian classics like grlot (fried
pork chunks) and oxtail stew are also available and a
$3 99 roast chicken special is a hard deal to resist the
glistening fish display that greets diners as they walk in
makes it clear that seafood is the specialty here crevette
en sauce (steamed shrimp with Creole butter sauce), lambi
frl (a mountain of perfectly tenderized fried conch), poisson
gros sel (local snapper in a spicy butter sauce), garlic or
Creole crabs Note for ambiance-seekers The Miami branch
has outdoor tiki-hut dining, North Miami's outlet, a former
Carvel, has the same food but lacks the tropical charm $-$$

Dogma Grill
7030 Biscayne Blvd.
What could induce downtown businessmen to drive to the
Upper Eastside to eat at a few outdoor-only tables just feet from
the busy Boulevard? From the day it opened, people have been
lining up, even in summer's sweltering heat for this stand's
sauce-garnished, all-beef, soy veggie, turkey, and chicken hot
dogs The 22 varieties range from simple (the Classic, with
ketchup, relish, and chopped onion) to the elaborate (the
Athens, topped with a Greek salad, including extra-virgin olive oil
dressing) to near-unbelievable combinations like the VIP, which
includes parmesan cheese and crushed pineapple $

East Side Pizza
731 NE 79th St.
Minestrone, sure But a pizzeria menu with carrot ginger
soup? Similarly many Italian-American pizzerias offer entrees
like spaghetti and meatballs, but East Side also has pumpkin
ravioli in brown butter/sage sauce, wild mushroom ravioli,
and other surprisingly upscale choices The East Side Salad
includes goat cheese, walnuts, and cranberries, quaffs
include imported Peroni beer As for the pizza, they are clas-
sic 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 shel-
tered outdoor picnic tables $

El Q-Bano Palacio de los Jugos
8650 Biscayne Blvd.
In case you were wondering if its too good to be true -- it isn't
El Q-Bands owners are indeed related to the family that oper-
ates the original three Palacios de los Jugos -- which means
no more schlepping way out west for the chicharrones against
which all others pale Also recommended are moisttamales,
tasty sandwiches (especially the drippingly wonderful pan con
lechon), rich flan, and the fresh tropical juices thatjustify the
aforementioned excesses For even heartier eaters, there's a
changing buffet of dailyspecials and sides And those ordering

Continued on page 53

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009


Restaurant Listings
Continued from page 52

the combo platter of, basically, Cuba's Greatest Hits had bet-
ter take advantage of the free delivery, since waddling home
will be difficult $-$$

Europa Car Wash and Caf6
6075 Biscayne Blvd.
Giving new meaningto the food term fusion," Europa serves
up sandwiches, salads, car washes, coffee with croissants,
and Chevron with Techron Those who remember this former
no-frills filling station only as one of the Boulevard's cheapest
sources of brand-name gas will be astonished atthe invitingly
expanded interior Snacks match the casual chicness sand-
wiches like the Renato prosciuttoo, hot capplcola, pepper jack
cheese, red peppers, and Romano cheese dressing), an elabo-
rate almond-garnished Chinese chicken salad, H&H bagels, the
world's best flown in from NYC And the car cleaning done
by hand, not finish-scratching machines are equally gentr-
fled, especially on Wednesdays Ladies Day," when women
are pampered with $10 detail washes and glasses of sparkling
wine while they walt $

Garden of Eatin'
136 NW 62nd St.
Low profile would be an understatement for this place
Housed in a yellow building that's tucked in back of
a parking lot behind a small grocery store, it's nearly
invisible from the street Inside, though, it has the com-
fortable feel of a beach bar, and generous servings of
inexpensive Afro-Caribbean vegan food Rastafarl owner
Immanuel Tafarl cooks up meat and dairy-free specials,
like Jamaican pumpkin/chayote stew in coconut milk,
that depend on what looks good at that morning's pro-
duce market 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 pota-
to pie, and a breakfast menu featuring organic blueberry
waffles with soy sausage patties $

Gourmet Station
7601 Biscayne Blvd., 305-762-7229
Homemeal replacement geared to workaholics with no time to
cook, has been trendyfor years But the GourmetStaton has out-
lasted mostof the competton Main reason deceptive healthi-
ness These are meals that are good for you, yet taste good
enough to be bad for you Favorite items include precision-grilled
salmon with lemon-dill yogurtsauce, and lean turkey meatloaf
with homemade BBQ sauce sin-free comfort food For lighter
eaters, there are wraps and salads with a large, interesting choice
of dressings Food is available a la carte or grouped in multmeal
plans customized for individual diners nutritional needs $$

Hiro's Sushi Express
5140 Biscayne Blvd.
(See North Miami Beach listing)

Jimmy's East Side Diner
7201 Biscayne Blvd., 305-754-3692
Open for more than 30 years, Jimmys respects the most
important American diner tradition Breakfast at any hour
Admittedly the place closes at4 00 p m, but still There are
blueberry hot cakes and pecan waffles for sweet-tooth eaters,
eggs any style, including omelets and open-face frittatas for
those preferring savories, and a full range of sides biscuits
and sausage gravy grits, hash, hash browns, even hot oat-
meal Also available are traditional diner entrees (meat loaf,
roast turkey liver and onions), plus burgers, salad platters,
and homemade chicken soup $-$$

6708 Biscayne Blvd., 305-757-0074
This newly renovated, indoor/outdoor sports bar serves low-
priced but high-qualitysteaks, plus more typical bar food that's
actually far from the usual premade, processed stuff Philly
cheese steak sandwiches, big enough for two, are made from
hand-sliced rib eye, sides include fries and beer-battered onion
rings, but also lightly lemony sauteed spinach And the burgers
rule, particularlythe Doomsday, a cheese/ bacon/mushroom-
topped two-pound monster that turns dinner into a competitive
sport But even the smallest Queenburger (a half-pounder
that's no sissy) is a perfectly seasoned contender No hard
liquor, but the beer list makes up for it $$

perfect ambiance & beautiful artwork...

Luna Caf6
4770 Biscayne Blvd., 305-573-5862
The ground floor of the Wachovia Bank building may not
seem a particularly evocative locale for an Italian eatery,
but once inside, the charming decor and the staffs ebul-
lient welcome indeed are reminiscent of a cafe in Italy The
kitchen's outstanding feature is a brick oven, which turns
out designer pizzas (greater in variety, lesser in cost on the
lunch menu, in effect till 4 30 p m ) and crisp-skinned roast
chickens Otherwise the menu holds few surprises except
the prices, surprisingly low for such a stylish place No dish
exceeds $22 $$-$$$

The Lunch Room
7957 NE 2nd Ave., 305-722-0759
Hidden in Little Haiti, this Thai/Japanese spot, which opened
in 2005, remains one of the Upper Eastside's best-kept
secrets But chef Michelle Bernsteln (of Michys) and other
knowledgeable diners wander over from the Boulevard for
simple but perfect pad Thai, chill grouper (lightly battered fil-
lets in a mouthwatering tangy/sweet/hot sauce), silky Asian
eggplant slices in Thai basil sauce, and other remarkably
low-priced specialties of Matilda Apirukpinyo, who operated
a critically acclaimed South Beach Thai eatery in the 1990s
Though the casually cute indoor/outdoor place is only open
for weekday lunches, cantina" dinners can be ordered and
picked up after hours $

Magnum Lounge
709 NE 79th St., 305-757-3368
Its a restaurant Its a lounge But it's decidedly not a typical
Miami restolounge, or like anything else in Miami Forbidding
from the outside, it is, inside, like a time-trip to Liza Minelli's
cabaret in pre-WWII Berlin, or what one imagines a fancy
1930s Manhattan supper club must have been like bordello
red decor, 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 For bargain-seekers, rich
French onion soup, with a varied bread basket, is a great
value The clientele is largely gay, but everyone is most
welcome $$$

6927 Biscayne Blvd., 305-759-2001
Don't even ask why Michele Bernstein, with a resume that
includes top-chef gigs at upscale eateries like Azul, not to
mention regular Food Network appearances, opened a homey
restaurant in an emerging (but far from fully gentrlfled) neigh-
borhood Just be glad she did, as you dine on white almond
gazpacho or impossibly creamy ham and blue cheese croqu-
etas Though most full entrees also come in half-size portions
(at almost halved prices), the tab can add up fast Table-to-
table conversations about the food are common, something
that only happens at exciting, if not flawless, restaurants And
at this one, the star herself is usually in the kitchen Parking in
the rear off 69th Street $$$-$$$$

7010 Biscayne Blvd., 305-759-1392
Big changes have come to Karma the car wash, the first being
a separate new name for the revamped restaurant Metro
Organic Bistro The owners proudly proclaim Metro to be
Miami's first all-organic fine-dining restaurant, where simple
preparations reveal and enhance natural flavors An entirely
new menu places emphasis on grilled organic meat and fish
dishes Try the steak frites -- organic, grass-fed skirt steak
with organic chimichurrl and fresh-cutfries Vegetarians will
love the organic portabella foccacla Karma car wash is still in
operation, and a great wash with meticulous detailing takes
time But killing an hour or so at Metro a pleasure, either
inside the architect-designed restaurant or outdoors on the
pato Beer and wine $-$$$

7100 Biscayne Blvd., 305-759-3999
Like its Brickell-area older sibling Indochine, this friendly
indoor/outdoor Asian bistro serves stylish fare from three
nations Japan, Thailand, and Vietnam Menus are also simi-
lar, split between traditional dishes like pad Thai and East/
West fusion creations like the Vampire sushi roll (shrimp
tempura, tomato, cilantro, roasted garlic) But the cafe also
carves out its own identity with original creations, including
yellow curry-spiced Moonchine fried rice or Popeye's Salad
(spicy tuna, avocado, spinach, masago roe, sesame seeds,

Continued on page 54

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Concrete Removal

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Paint Restoration

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7010 Biscayne Blvd. Miami, FL 33138
Karma: Hours of operation Bam-rpin Ewyday 3L05-759-1392
IMnIrw_ Bistro: IHoursa of l peretion 11 em-1 Opm Everyday 305-751-8756

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Wild CmiljhT, Fi-,h

May 2009

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


Restaurant Listings
Continued from page 53

and a scrumptious sweet/hot kimchee dressing) Nearly
everything is low in sodium, fat, and calories except des-
serts (notably the chocolate bomb) There's also an impres-
sive sake list, too Coming soon a large rear patio for dining
and entertainment $$-$$$

Moshi Moshi
7232 Biscayne Blvd.
Spruced up" is a supreme understatement for the space,
formerly the Haitian hole-in-the-wall Fidele Now a boutique
Japanese eatery, this younger sibling 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 decor is the food's unusually upscale quality
But this isn't surprising given the owners' previous work
Toshi Furlhata and Hiro Terada were executive chefs at
SushiSamba and Doraku, Yani Yuhara is an ex-Benihana
manager Sushi ranges from pristine plain individual nigiri
(all the usuals plus rarer finds like toro) to over-the-top
maki rolls like the signature Moshi Moshi (tuna, white tuna,
salmon, avocado, masago, tempura flakes, spicy mayo)
Tapas also go beyond standards like edamame to intrigu-
ing dishes like arabiki sausage, a sweet-savory pork finger-
ling frank with a superior pop/spurt factor, rarely found in
restaurants even in Japan, they re popular Japanese home-
cooking items And rice-based plates like Japanese curry
(richer/sweeter than Indian types) satisfy even the biggest
appetites $-$$$

News Lounge
5582 NE 4th Ct.
305-758-9932; www.the55thststation.com
Unlike South Beach's News Cafe, Mark Soyka's new News is,
as its name suggests, more a friendly neighborhood hangout
and watering hole than a full-fledged eatery Nevertheless the
limited menu of light bites is along with other entertaining
lures like an inviting outdoor patio, an intriguing music selection,
a 5 00-9 00 p m half-price deal on well drinks and selected
beers, and rest rooms that resemble eclectic art galleries
-- part of the reason that almost all who drop in stay for hours
Especially recommended snacks are fat mini-burgers with
chipotle ketchup, a brie, turkey and mango chutney sandwich
on crusty baguette, and what many feel is the original cafe's
Greatest Hit creamy hummus with warm pita A beer list that
includes Tucher on tap, plus high-octane Belgian brews like
Duvel and Delirium Tremens, reminds diners that beer is food
too $

Pineapple Blossom Tea Room
8214 Biscayne Blvd., 305-7548328
The interior of this pineapple-yellow building is a soothing
oasis offering traditional full English tea service or a more
zingy tropical fruit-flavored Caribbean variation Whether
your chosen brew is steaming Earl Grey or pineapple-
mint iced tea, the scones (with thick cream and jam), tea
cakes, cookies, and desserts, are hometown treats Owner
Frances Brown is a pastry chef There's more substantial
fare, too Innovative wraps like Caribbean shrimp salad
with tropical fruit salsa, salads such as warm goat cheese
with fresh greens, tomatoes, dried cranberries, and can-
died cashews Also offered are tempting take-out baskets
like the Tea for Two (with tea, jam, scones, and cookies),
great for gifts or for at-home teas $-$$

Red Light
7700 Biscayne Blvd., 305-757-7773
Only in Miami From the rustc al fresco deck of chef Kris
Wessel's intentionally downwardly mobile retro-cool riverfront
restaurant located in a refurbished old motel, you can enjoy
regional wildlife like manatees (Florida's own half mammal/
half meatloaf) while enjoying eclectic regional dishes that range
from cutting-edge (sour-orangemarinated, sous-vide-cooked
Florida lobster with sweet corn sauce) to comfort (crispy-
breaded Old South fried green tomatoes) The menu is limited,
which makes sense with a chef-driven place, and it changes
daily which also makes sense at an ingredient-driven place But
several signature specialties, if they re available, are not to be
missed BBQ shrimp in a tangy Worcestershire and cayenne-
spiked butter/wine sauce, irresistible mini conch fritters, and
homemade ice cream $$-$$$

Royal Bavarian Schnitzel Haus
1085 NE 79th St., 305-754-8002
With Christmas lights perpetually twinkling and party
noises emanating from a new outdoor biergarten, this
German restaurant is owner Alex Richter's one-man
gentrification project, transforming a formerly uninvit-
ing 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 $$-$$$

5556 NE 4th Court
305-759-3117; www.soykarestaurant.com
This expansive, contemporary hangout was often cred-
ited with almost single-handedly sparking the revitaliza-
tion of the Biscayne Corridor's Upper Eastside Now
that the hype has calmed down, Soyka remains a solid
neighborhood restaurant that like restaurateur Mark
Soyka's previous ventures (notably Ocean Drive's pio-
neering News Cafe and the Van Dyke on Lincoln Road)
is a perfect fit for its area Comfortably priced yuppie
comfort food like meatloaf with mashed potatoes, crab
cakes with spicy-sweet slaw, a wild mushroom/smoked
mozzarella pizza, or a Cobb salad may not be revolu-
tionary fare, but Soyka continues to thrive while more
ambitious, nationally publicized restaurants like OLA
have come and gone $$-$$$

Sushi Siam
5582 NE 4th Ct., 305-751-7818
On the fairly standard menu of sushi-bar specialties plus a
small selection of Thai and Japanese cooked dishes, there
are a few surprises, such as a unique lobster maki that's
admittedly huge in price ($25 95), but also in size six
ounces of crisp-fried lobster chunks, plus asparagus, avo-
cado, lettuce, tobiko (flying fish), masago (smelt) roes, and
special sauces Also popular are red and orange dragon
rolls, similarly sauced makis of fried shrimp plus veggies,
topped with, respectively, raw tuna and salmon Thai
dishes come with a choice of more than a dozen sauces,
ranging from traditional red or green curries to the inven-
tive, such as an unconventional honey sauce $$$

UVA 69
6900 Biscayne Blvd.
Owned by the Vega brothers (chef Michael and artist

Sinuhe) of Cane a Sucre now defunct, but one of
Midtown Miami's first cool, contemporary cafes this
more ambitious yet casual outdoor/indoor Euro-cafe and
lounge serves the same purpose on the Upper Eastside,
helping to transform a commuter strip into a hip place to
hang out The menu has grown more sophisticated along
with the neighborhood Lunch includes a variety of salads
and elegant sandwiches like La Minuta (beer-battered
mahi-mahl with cilantro aioli and caramelized onions on
housemade foccacia) Dinner features a range of small
plates (poached figs with Gorgonzola cheese and honey
balsamic drizzle) and full entrees like sake-marinated
salmon with bonlato mash, Ponzu butter sauce, and crispy
spinach Drink specials and live music on weekends

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

Wine 69
6909 Biscayne Blvd.
From the name, one might think this is just a wine shop
It's actually about wine, food, and art, and how they
work together Wines, about 200 labels, are available
retail (at 35-50 percent of their marked prices, which are
for in-house drinkers), with 40 sold by the glass But the
place's specialty is comparative flights of various wine
types from different regions Food, designed for pairing,
includes a new $25 three-course dinner But the menu
is mostly light bites with intriguingly inventive touches a
seared Cajun tuna salad with wasabi sauce, crab cakes
with Asian srlracha chill sauce, a three-cheese souffle
Especially impressive are some nicely priced cheese/
charcuterie platters, served with fig tapenade, cornich-
ons, fresh fruits, bread, and multiple sauces And the art
part encompasses revolving exhibits, plus an art lecture
series featuring wines picked by owner Ben Neji to com-
pliment the art $$

Yiya's Gourmet Cuban Bakery
646 NE 79th St., 305-754-3337
A true community jewel, this bakery is also a most
welcoming cafe, serving daily-changing bargain lunch
specials, from chef Delsa Bernardo (who co-owns the
place with attorney Abbie Cuellar), that are homemade
right down to the herbs grown on the bakery s window
sills Bernardo's pan con lechon sandwiches (slow-roasted
pork, onions, and secret marinade stuffed into fresh-
baked Cuban bread) and flaky-crusted sweet or savory
Cuban pastries are legend But she also crafts treats
not found at average Cuban bakeries, like inventive piz-
zas using housemade Indian naan bread Additionally
Bernardo carries unique treats produced by a few friends
candies, cupcakes, exotically flavored flans, and artful
specialty cakes from Harry Bakes $

Barchetta on the Bay
160179th St. Causeway, 305-861-2228
Location, location, location The truth of the old real estate cliche
could not be better Illustrated than at this reasonably priced
Italian restaurant While pastas like lobster ravioli in tomato/
cream vodka sauce are under $20, and no meat or seafood
entree exceeds $30, the spectacular setting on Biscayne Bay is
priceless Floor to ceiling picture windows serve as the expansive
indoor dining space's rear wall, but the primo seats are outdoors,
in sheltered banquettes and pato tables where the water view,
and carefree tropical partyfeel, is unimpeded $$-$$$$

Bocados Ricos
1880 79th St. Causeway; 305-8644889
Tucked into a mall best known for housing the Happy Stork
Lounge, this little luncheonette joint services big appettes
Along with the usual grilled churrascos, there's an especially
belly-busting bandeja paisa (Colombia's sampler platter of
grilled steak, sausage, chicharron, fried egg, avocado, plantains,
rice, and beans) But do not miss marginally dainter dishes
like sopa de costilla, if this rich shortrib bowl is among the daily
changing homemade soups Arepas include our favorite corn
cake the hefty Aura, stuffed with chorizo, chicharron, came
desmechada (shredded flank steak), plantains, rice, beans,
and cheese Garnished with even more over-thetop abandon
are Colombian-style hot dogs like the Perro Rico, topped with
chicharron, chorizo, cheese, a quail egg, and pineapple to can-
cel out the cholesterol Hal But who cares? Strap on the med
emergency bracelet and bring it on $-$$

Edy's Chicken & Steak
1624 79th St. Causeway
It might initially seem that the steaks (sirloin, filet, or a chewy
marucha" top round) are what differentiate Edys from Miami's
many other chicken joints But what really makes the place
stand out is the signature Peruvian polio a la brasa, char-
broiled in a wood-fired rotisserie rather than simply plonked
on a grill The rotation makes the bird self-baste, keeping even
the delicate white meatjuicy under its crispy, nearlyfat-free
skin Spicing is also superior The original recipe of owner Edy
Dernovsek's secret dozen-ingredient marinade came from a
visit to Peru, but has been tweaked with typical spices from her
hometown -- Chiang Mai, Thailand The result is subtly mouth-
warming heat absent from average chain chickens Nothing
leaps out at you, but there just enough of a taste-bud tease to
make the poultrys own flavors jump For serious fire, green chill
sauce comes with all orders $-$$

Japanese Market and Sushi Deli
1412 79th St. Causeway; 305-861-0143
Inside a small market that is, nevertheless, widely consid-
ered Miami's premier source of Japanese foodstuffs, the
Sushi Deli" restaurant component is nothing more than a
lunch counter to the left of the entrance But chef Michio
Kushi, who worked for years at the Sushin, Miami's first full-
service Japanese restaurant, serves up some sushi found
nowhere else in town Example traditional Osaka-style sushi
- layers of rice, seasoned seaweed, more rice, and marinat-
ed fresh mackerel, pressed into a square box, then cut into
lovely one-bite sandwich squares While raw fish is always
impeccable here, some unusual vegetarian sushi creations
also tempt, as do daily entrees, like curried beef stew, that
typify Japanese home cooking $

Continued on page 55

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.................. .... .... ... ...... ...

Miami Reach: 305.865. 7500 703 71st St. I Soath Beach: 305-6 72-2400 1653 Washington Ave.


Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009


Restaurant Listings
Continued from page 54

Mario the Baker
1700 79th St. Causeway
(See North Miami listing)

Oggi Caffe
1666 79th St. Causeway
This cozy, romantic spot started back in 1989 as a pasta
factory (supplying numerous high-profile restaurants) as
well as a neighborhood eatery And the wide range of bud-
get-friendly, homemade pastas, made daily, remains the
main draw for its large and loyal clientele Choices range
from homey, meaty lasagna to luxuriant crab ravioli with
creamy lobster sauce, with occasional forays into creative
exotica such as seaweed spaghettini (with sea scallops,
shitakes, and fresh tomatoes) For those tempted by too
much, ultra-accommodating servers have been known to
allow half orders of two pastas $$-$$$

Shuckers Bar & Grill
1819 79th St. Causeway
Cheap eats and a million-dollar view" is the sound bite
manager Philip Conklin uses to describe this outdoor beach
bar, hidden in back of a bayfront motel Thejoint dates from
South Beach's late 1980s revival, but the kick-off-your-shoes
vibe notto mention the pool tables and jukebox couldn't
be farther from SoBe glitz The food ranges from classic bar
favorites (char-grilled wings, conch fritters, raw or steamed
shellfish) to full dinners featuring steak, homemade pasta,
or fresh, not frozen, fish And since about half of the estab-
lishment is sheltered, the bites and bay view rock even when
the weather sucks $-$$

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

940 71st St., 305-864-9848
It took a G reek place (Ouzo's, which moved to bigger SoBe
quarters in 2007) to break the curse of this former restaurant
jinx location And Ariston continues the lucky streak with clas-
sical Greek cuisine based on recipes of co-owner Thanasis
Barlos's mom Noni Barlou, and executed by CIA-trained chef
Alexia Apostolidis Skip the menu's puzzling Italianesque and
generic Euro-American selections and concentrate on authentic
treats like the lightest, most savory whipped tarama (caviar
spread) west of Athens, ultra-rich tzatzlki (Greek yogurt with
cukes, garlic, and olive oil), bracing avgolemono (egg-thickened
chicken/lemon soup), char-grilled sardines with greens and
citrus dressing, or an inspired eggplant/ground beef moussaka,
bound here with an almostsinfully custardy bechamel $$-$$$

Caf6 Prima Pasta
414 71st St., 305-867-0106, www.primapasta.com
Opened in 1993 with 28 seats, the family-run North Beach land-
mark has now taken over the block, with an outdoor terrace and
mult-roomed indoor space whose walls are full of photos of their
clientele (including national and local celebs) Partcularl popular
are homemade pastas, sauced with Argentine-ltalan indulgence
rather than Italian simplicity crabmeat raviolett in lobster cream
sauce, black squid ink linguini heaped with seafood Veal dishes,
such as plccata with white wine-lemoncaper sauce, are also a
specialty Though romantic enough for dates, the place is quite kid-
friendly- and on the terrace, they'll even feed Fido $$$

Tamarind Thai
946 Normandy Dr.
305-861-6222; www.tamarindthai.us
When an eaters executive chef is best-selling Thai cookbook
author Vatcharin Bhumichitr, you'd expect major media hype, fancy
South Beach prices, and a fancySoBe address Instead Bhumichitr
joined forces with Day Longsomboon (an old Thai school pal whdd
moved to Miami) at this unpretentious, authentic (no sushi) neigh-
borhood place Some standout dishes here (like shrimp and corn
cakes with plum sauce, deep-fried sweet and sour fish, and roast
duck with tamarind sauce) are featured in the chefs latesttome,
Vatch's Thai Kitchen, but with Tamarind's very affordable prices

(especially at lunch), you might as well letthe man's impeccably
trained kitchen staff do the work for you $$-$$$

Iron Sushi
9432 NE 2nd Ave.
With three Biscayne Corridor outlets (plus several branches
elsewhere in town), this mostlytake-out mini chain is fast
becoming the Sushi Joint That Ate Miami And why do
Miamians eat here? Not ambiance There Isn't any But when
friends from the Pacific Northwest, where foodies know their
fish, tout the seafood's freshness, we listen And though the
bargain prices, and many menu items, are similar to those at
other fast-food sushi places, there are some surprisingly imag-
inative makis, like the Maharaja, featuring fried shrimp and
drizzles of curry mayo And where else will you find a stacked
sushi (five assorted makis) birthday cake? $-$$

C6te Gourmet
9999 NE 2nd Ave., #112
If every Miami neighborhood had a neighborhood restaurant
like this low-priced little French jewel, it'd be one fantastic
food town The menu is mostly simple stuff breakfast
croissants, crepe, soups, sandwiches, salads, sweets, and
a few more substantial specials like a Tunisian-style brlk
(buttery phyllo pastry stuffed with tuna, onions, potatoes,
and tomatoes) with a mesclun side salad But everything is
homemade, including all breads, and prepared with impec-
cable ingredients, classic French technique, and meticulous
attention to detail, down to the stylish plaid ribbons that hold
together the cafe's baguette sandwiches $-$$

Los Antojos
11099 Biscayne Blvd.; 305-892-1411
If its Sunday it must be sancocho de gallina, Colombia's national
dish If its Saturday it must be ajiaco Both are thick chicken

soups, full meals in a bowl But veggies and garnishes vary and
the modest Colombian eatery is a handy spot to comparison-test
such typical stews Adventuresome eaters may wantto try another
Saturday special, mondongo (tripe soup, similar to Mexicods
menudo) For Colombiancuisine novices a Bandeja Paa (sam-
pler including rice, beans, came asada, chicharron, eggs, sauteed
sweet plantains, and an arepa corn cake) B available every day as
are antojitos lite whims," smaller snacks like chorizo con arepa
(a corn cake with Colombian sausage) And for noncarnivores there
are several heftyseafood platters, made to order $$

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

13408 Biscayne Blvd, 305-947-6339
Buried in a strip mall perpendicular to the Boulevard, Bamboche
is worth the hunt on one of those head-splittng Saturdays, for a
Haitian specialty not found in many area restaurants bouillon tet
cabrnt a soup packed with greens (like spinach, cabbage, cress,
string beans) and root veggies that is reputed to be a miraculous
hangover remedy Along with bouillon, weekend specials include
more unusual dishes like fritay fried street snacks Hatian stan-
dards (grlot tassot) are available daily as are fresh-squeezed
juices, lattes, and almosttwo dozen desserts $

Bar-B-Que Beach Sports Bar & Grill
12599 Biscayne Blvd., 305-895-3141
On Friday nights, theres karaoke atthis expansive eatery though
from the decor mixing Wild West rusticity with Key West flip-
flops dangling from the ceiling -- its hard to know whether to
brush up your Jimmy Buffett medley or Tumbling Tumbleweeds"
There are specials the other six days of the week as well,

Continued on page 56



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Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com



Restaurant Listings
Continued from page 55

from early-bird discounts to open-mke nights to kids-eat-free
Tuesday But don't forgetthe biggest draw the barbecue, hon-
est stuff that has been low-temperature smoked for 12 to 14
hours till tender yet resilient Ribs are meaty (exceptfor the aptly
named, bargain-priced bucket of bones," and while chopped
pork may not totallysatsfy North Carolina pulled pork purists,
nothing within a 1000-mile drive ever does Biggest winners suc-
culentsliced brisketand delightfullyjuicychicken $$

Bulldog Barbecue
15400 Biscayne Blvd., 305-940-9655
The BBQ master at this small, rustc room is pugnacious Top
Chef contender Howie Kelnberg, whose indoor electric smoker
turns out mild-tasting cue that ranges from the expected
(pulled pork, ribs, brisket chicken) to oughta-be-expected
stuff like hot-smoked salmon or smoked vegge plates for
noncarnivores There are also creative comfort food starters
like BBQ chicken flatbread, salads, and sweets Sides include
refreshingslaw, beans studded with burnt ends," (the most
intensely flavored outer barbecue chunks), and sweet potato or
chipotle-spiced fries (frozen, notfresh-made, butfoolproof) The
barbecue's cost is high compared to most places, but such is
the price of fame $$-$$$

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

Canton Caf6
12749 Biscayne Blvd.
Easily overlooked, this strip-mall spot serves mostly Cantonese-
based dishes, ranging from all the old ChineseAmerican classics
(chop suey moo goo gai pan, pu pu platters) through newer
Americanized fusion favorites like honey garlic chicken, teryaki
beef, and crab Rangoon But there are also about two dozen spic-
ier, Szechuan-stle standards like kung po shrimp, ma po tofu,
and General Tso's chicken And there are a few imaginative new
items, like the intriguing christened Shrimp Lst in the Forest"
Singapore curried rice noodles, crispy shrimp with honey-glazed
walnuts, and Mongolian beef (with raw chils and fresh Oriental
basil) Delivery is available for both lunch and dinner $$

Captain Jim's Seafood
12950 W. Dixie Hwy.
This market/restaurant was garnering critical acclaim
even when eat-in dining was confined to a few Formica
tables in front of the fish counter, owing to the fresh-
ness of Its seafood (much of it from Capt Jim Hanson's
own fishing boats, which supply many of Miami's most
upscale eateries) Now there's a casual but pleasantly

nautical side dining room with booths, and more
recently added, a sushi bar stocked largely with flown-
in Japanese fish just as pristine as the local catch
Whether it's garlicky scampi (made with sweet Key
West shrimp), housemade smoked fish dip, grilled yel-
lowtail (or some more exotic local snapper, like hog or
mutton), perfectly tenderized cracked conch, or conch
fritters (with just enough batter to bind the big chunks
of Bahamian shellfish), everything is deftly prepared
and bargain-priced $$

Casa Mia Trattoria
1950 NE 123rd St.
Tucked 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 about ten
minutes here, thanks to the staff's genuinely Italian ebul-
lhence The delightful Italian accents don't hurt, either As
for the menu offerings, they re mostly classic comfort foods
with some contemporary items as well Housemade pastas
are good enough that low-carb dieters should definitely
temporarily fuhgeddaboudit, especially for the tender gnoc-
chi with pesto or better yet, delicate fagottinl -- beggar's
purses" stuffed with pears and cheese $$

15400 Biscayne Blvd., 305-956-2808
Diners can get some of the usual Tex-Mex dishes at this
cute spot, if they must But the specialty is Mayan-rooted
Yucatan cuisine So why blow bucks on burritos when one
can sample Caribbean Mexico's most typical dish cochinlta
pibil? Its currently LA's trendiest taco filling (and morning-
after hangover remedy) But that city couldn't have a more
authentically succulent version of the pickle-onion-topped
marinated pork dish than Cheen's earthly aromatic
from achiote, tangy from bitter oranges, 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 $$-$$$

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

Chipotle Mexican Grill
14776 Biscayne Blvd., 305-947-2779
Proving that national fast-food chains don't have to be bad
for either diners or the environment, Chipotle serves what
the company calls food with integrity" The fare is simple,
basically tacos and big burritos soft flour or crisp corn
tortillas stuffed with chipotle-marinated steak or chicken
chunks, bolder shredded beef barbacoa, or herb-scented
pork carnitas, all with choice of fresh garnishes But these
bites contain no evil ingredients (transfats, artificial color/
flavor, antibiotics, growth hormones) Additionally, all pork,
plus a large and growing percentage of the grill's beef and
poultry, is raised via humane and ecologically sustainable
methods And the food, while not the authentic Mex street
stuff dreams are made of, is darned tasty, too $

D.J.'s Diner
12210 Biscayne Blvd., 305-893-5250
Located in a Best Western motel, this place, run bya Chinese-
American family serves mostly basic American diner fare burg-
ers, sandwiches, about dozen dinner entrees, fresh-baked apple

pie, and, oddly a whole section of Caesar salad variatons But its
also a secret source for Chinese food, mostly chow mien/chop
suey-type dishes, but also a few dishes such as eggplant with garlic
sauce and ma po tofu that are a step up in authenticity $-$$

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

Here Comes the Sun
2188 NE 123rd St.
At this friendly natural foods establishment, one of Miami's
first there's a full stock of vitamins and nutritional supple-
ments But the place's heartysoups, large variety of entrees
(including fresh fish and chicken as well as vegetarian selec-
tons), 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 smooth-
ies complete the menu $-$$

13488 Biscayne Blvd.
Half sushi/sashimi, half cooked Japanese dishes, the
menu is relatively small but covers most of the traditional
favorites and a few surprises Popular makis include the
Dream (shrimp tempura, avocado, Japanese mayo, and
masago), the vegetarian Popeye spicy spinach roll, and the
deep-fried Crispy, a priceless salmon and veggie roll Among
cooked items, there's a large list of terlyakis, and a few
dishes prepared with a different twist panko-breaded
pork or chicken katsu cutlets, for instance, that eschew the
standard sweet sauce for curry $$

Jerusalem Market and Deli
16275 Biscayne Blvd.
Specialties like shawarma, spinach pies, kebabs, hum-
mus, and kibbeh (a savory mix of ground lamb and bulgur,
arguably the world's most interesting meatball) are native
to many Middle East countries, but when a Lebanese
chef/owner, like this eatery's Sam Elzoor, is at the helm,
you can expect extraordinary refinement There are elabo-
rate daily specials here, like lemon chicken or stuffed cab-
bage with a variety of sides, but even a common falafel
sandwich is special when the pita is also stuffed with
housemade cabbage and onion salads, plus unusually
rich and tart tahina For home cooks, there's also a lim-
ited selection of imported spices and staples $-$$

Le Griot de Madame John
975 NE 125th St.
When Madame moved her base of operations from her Little
Haiti home to a real restaurant (though a very informal one,
and still mostly takeout), she began offering numerous tradi-
tonal Haitian dishes, includingjerked beef or goat tassot and

an impressive poisson gros sel (a whole fish rubbed with salt
before poaching with various veggies and spices) But the dish
that still packs the place is the grlot marinated pork chunks
simmered and then fried tll they re moistly tender inside, crisp
and intensely flavored outside $

Lime Fresh Mexican Grill
3201 N. Miami Ave. (Shops at Midtown)
(See Midtown / Wynwood / Design District listing)

Little Havana
12727 Biscayne Blvd.
In addition to whte-tablecoth ambiance that's several steps up in ele-
gancefrom the majority of neighborhood eateries, the placefeatures
live Latin entertainment and dancing making it a gpod chance when
diners wanta nightout notjusta meal Its also a good choice for
diners who don't speak Spansh, but don't worry about authencity
Classic Cuban homestyle dishes like mojomannated lechon asado,
topped with onions, andjuicy ropa vieja aretranslated on the menu,
notthe plate, and fancier creatons like pork filet in tang/tamarind
sauceseem universal crowd-pleasers $$$

Maleewan Thai & Sushi
2224 NE 123rd St.
Redecorated (tasteful bamboo-matted walls, silk flowers) since the
days many days -this space was occupied bythe kosher sushi
spotTani Guchi's Place, Maleewan a now a cozy neighborly nook
at which to enjoy all the standard Japanese and Thai selections
Cooked sushi is the strongsuit here, particularlythe signature
mammoth-size Maleewan roll, given zing by pickled Japanese
squash and savor bya cnspyyellowtail tempura topping If you're
craving more creativefare, check outthe handwritten specials
board on your way in $$

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

Mario the Baker
250 NE 25th St.
At this North Miami Institution (opened in 1969) food is
Italian-American, not Italian-Italian spaghetti and meatballs,
lasagna, eggplant parmigiana, and hot or cold subs No
imported buffala, arugula, or other chichi stuff on the New
York-style medium-thin-crusted pizzas, the top topping here
is the savory housemade sausage And no one leaves with-
out garlic rolls, awash in warm parsley oil and smashed gar-
lic ($4 a dozen, $3 per half-dozen, which won't even last the
ride home) New branches are now open in Miami's Midtown
neighborhood and in North Bay Village $

Continued on page 57


modern Indian Cuisine

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2010 Biscayne Blvd. 105.403.1976
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TEL: 305-754-8002 www.schnitzelhausmiami.com

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

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009


Restaurant Listings
Continued from page 56

The Melting Pot
15700 Biscayne Blvd.
For 1950s and 1960s college students, fondue pots were
standard dorm accessories These days, however, branches
of this chain (originating in Maitland, Florida, in 1975) are
generally the only places to go for this blast-from-the-past
eating experience Fondues are available a la carte or as full
dip-it-yourself meals Start with a wine-enriched four-cheese
fondue, proceed to an entree with choice of meat or sea-
food, plus choice of cooking potion herbed wine, bouillon,
or oil, finish with fruits and cakes dipped in your favorite
melted chocolate Fondue etiquette dictates that diners who
drop a skewer in the pot must kiss all other table compan-
ions, so go with those you love $$$

North One 10
11052 Biscayne Blvd.
For most chefs a Miami-to-Manhattan move is generally con-
sidered one of those offers you can't refuse But after helming
several NYC restaurants for China Grill Management the
homegrown married team of chef Dewey and sommelier Dale
LoSasso returned to do their own thing in their own neighbor-
hood The menu is createe comfortfood" a shrimp waffle with
basil butter, "steak and eggs" (a grilled NYstrip with truffled goat
cheese frittata, herb demiglace, and hash browns), a stone crab
hot dog the chef invented for a Super Bowl party The award-
winning wine list inspires playfully themed pairing events like an
Italian food/wine "Godfather" dinner But its not South Beach,
so prices are reasonable, and parking is free $$$-$$$$

Nuvo Kafe
13152 W. Dixie Hwy.
Though the neighborhood is decidedly ungentrfled, the interior
of this cafe is an oasis of cultivated Caribbean cool and subtly
sophisticated global fare Haltan-born, Montreal-schooled chef
Ivan Dorval formerly cooked at the Oasis Cafe in Miami Beach,
as well as the Delano, and the varied background is reflected
in cuisine that's chiefly create Caribbean but with influences
from the Middle East, Asia, Greece, and Italy Homemade,
health-oriented dishes include velvety ginger pumpkin bisque,
unusually refined conch fritters (light batter, monster chunks of
conch), West Indies crab cakes with citrus aloli, and a signature
lavish, but onlyslightlysinful, Citadel Raw Fruit Pie $$-$$$

Oishi Thai
14841 Biscayne Blvd.
At this stylish, dramatically minimalist Thai/sushi spot, the
regular Thai and Japanese dishes are as good as anywhere
in town But the way to go is the menu of specials, many
of which clearly reflect the young chef's fanatic devotion
to fresh fish, as well as the time he spent in the kitchen of
Knob broiled miso-marinated black cod, rock shrimp tem-
pura with creamy sauce, even Nobu Matsuhisas "new style
sashimi" (slightly surface-seared by drizzles of hot olive and
sesame oil) Formerly all Japanese-influenced, the specials
menu now includes some Thai-inspired creations, too, such
as veal massaman curry, Chilean sea bass curry, and sizzling
filet mignon with basil sauce $$$-$$$$

k A11'l -

La Paloma
10999 Biscayne Blvd.
Step into La Paloma and you'll be stepping back in time,
circa 1957 Adorned with antiques (some even real) and
chandeliers, the over-the-top plush decor was the American
fine-dining ideal half a century ago (though actually the
place only dates from the 1970s) Cuisine is similarly retro-
luxe old-fashioned upscale steaks, chops, and lobster, plus
fancier Continental fare If you have a yen for chateaubriand,
duck a I'orange, oysters Rockefeller, French onion soup,
trout almondine, wiener schnitzel, and peach Melba, its the
only place in town that can deliver them all A huge wine list
fuels the fantasy $$$$

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

14871 Biscayne Blvd.
(See Miami Brickell / Downtown listng)

Paul Bakery Caf6
14861 Biscayne Blvd.
From one rural shop in 1889, the French bakery known sim-
ply as Paul has grown to a worldwide chain, which fortunately
chose to open its first U S outlet in our town One bite of the
crusty peasant loaf, the olive-studded fougasse, or another
of the signature artisan breads transports you right back to
France As authentic as the boulangerle breads are, the patis-
serie items like flan normande (a buttery-crusted, almond-
topped apple-and-custard tart) are justas evocative For eat-in
diners, quite continental soups, salads, and sandwiches are
equally and dependably French $$

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

Scorch Grillhouse and Wine Bar
13750 Biscayne Blvd.
Though some food folks were initially exasperated when




Order any entree
and a beverage,

GET A 2""

(*of equal or lesser value)
Only w/this coupon
11:30am 4pm

yet another Latin-influenced grill replaced one of our area's
few Vietnamese restaurants, its hard to bear a grudge at
a friendly, casual neighborhood place that offers monster
ten-ounce char-grilled burgers, with potatoes or salad, for
$8 50, steaks, plus a side and a sauce or veg topper, for
nine bucks at lunch, $15 to $18 75 (the menu's top price)
at night, and three-dollar glasses of decent house wine
Many other grilled meat and seafood items are also offered,
plus pastas, salads, gooey desserts, and specials (events as
well as food) $-$$

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

Sun City Caf6
15400 Biscayne Blvd.
Super-stuffed crepes, made to order from scratch, are the
main specialty here some sweet (the Banana Split fresh
strawberries, sliced bananas, candied walnuts, ice cream,
and Nutella or dulce de leche), some savory (the Sun
City Steak beef, mushrooms, onions, red peppers, Swiss
cheese, and Al sauce) But there's also a smaller selection
of custom-crafted wraps, salads, sandwiches, and sides,
plus smoothies, coffee drinks, even beer or wine Free WI-FI
encourages long, lingering lunches $

Sushi House
15911 Biscayne Blvd.
In terms of decor drama, this sushi spot seems to have
taken its cue from Philippe Starck Delano-like sheer floor-to-
ceiling drapes, for starters The sushi list, too, is over the top,
featuring monster makis the Cubble Comfort (spicy tuna,
soft-shell crab, shrimp and eel tempura, plus avocado, jala-
penos, and cilantro, topped with not one but three sauces
wasabi, teriyaki, and spicy mayo), the Volcano, topped
with a mountain of tempura flakes, the spicy/sweet sauce-
drenched Hawaiian King Crab, containing unprecedented
ingredients like tomatoes, green peppers, and pineapple To
drink there are boutique wines, artisan sakes, and cocktails
as exotic as the cuisine $$$-$$$$

Tokyo Bowl
12295 Biscayne Blvd.
This fast-food drive-thru (unexpectedly serene inside) is
named for its feature item, big budget-priced bowls of rice or
noodles topped with cooked Japanese-style items like teryaki
fish (fresh fish sauteed with vegetables), curried chicken and
veggies, spicy shrimp, or gyoza dumplings in tangy sauce
There's also an all-you-can-eat deal sushi (individual nigirl or
maki rolls) plus tempura, teriyaki, and other cooked items for
$14, three bucks more for sashimi instead of sushi $-$$

Venezia Pizza and Caf6
13452 Biscayne Blvd.
No frozen pizza crusts or watery mozzarella here No
imported designer ingredients either The pies are New

York-style, but the dough is made fresh daily, and the
cheese is Grande (from Wisconsin, considered America's
finest pizza topper) Also on the menu are Italian-American
pastas, a large selection of hot an cold subs, simple sal-
ads, and a few new protein adds grilled chicken breast,
fried fish, or a steak $-$$

Wong's Chinese Restaurant
12420 Biscayne Blvd.
This old-timer's menu reads like a textbook on how to please
everyone, with food ranging from traditional Chinese to
Chinese-American tojust plain American Appetizers include
honey garlic chicken wings or Buffalo wings A crab-claw
starter comes with choice of pork fried rice or French fries
Seafood lovers can get shrimp chop suey, or salty pep-
per shrimp (authentically shell-on) And snowbirds will be
pleased to find a number of dishes that are mainstays of
Manhattan Szechuan menus but not common in Miami cold
sesame noodles, Hunan chicken, twice-cooked pork, Lake
Tung Ting shrimp, and peppery kung po squid $$

Woody's Famous Steak Sandwich
13105 Biscayne Blvd.
The griddle has been fired up since 1954 at this indie fast-
food joint, and new owners have done little to change the
time-tested formula exceptto stretch operating hours into the
night and expand its classic grlddled-or-fried-things menu to
include a few health-conscious touches like Caesar salad, plus
a note proclaiming their oils are free of trans fats Otherwise the
famous steak sandwich is still a traditional Philly thin-sliced
beef, cheese, and onions on a buttered Italian roll (with tasty
housemade sour cream/horseradish sauce served on the
side so as not to offend purists) Extras like mushrooms are
possible, not imposed Drippin good burgers, too And unlike
MacChain addicts, patrons here can order a cold beer with the
good grease $-$$

14316 Biscayne Blvd.
Its appropriate that the name of this small strip-mall sushi
spot refers to Japan's first and only sparkling sake some-
thing most Americans have never heard of, making the
reference pretty much an insider'sjoke Since opening
several years ago, the restaurant itself has been one of
our town's best-kept secrets But the perfectionist chef/
owner's concentration on quality and freshness of ingre-
dients has made Zipang the pick of sushi cognoscenti like
Loews's executive chef Marc Ehrler, who has named the
unpretentious place his favorite Miami eatery, while admit-
ting the obvious "Nobody knows it" $$-$$$

Bamboo Garden
1232 NE 163rd St.
Big enough for a banquet (up to 300 guests), this
veteran is many diners' favorite on the 163rd/167th
Street "Chinatown" strip because of its superior decor
But the menu also offers well-prepared, authentic
dishes like peppery black bean clams, sauteed mustard
greens, and steamed whole fish with ginger and scal-
lions, plus Chinese-American egg foo young Default

Continued on page 58

May 2009 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com


Restaurant Listings
Continued from page 57

spicing is mild even in Szechuan dishes marked with
red-chill icons, but don't worry, realizing some like it
hot, the chefs will customize spiciness to heroic heat
levels upon request $$

Blue Marlin Fish House
2500 NE 163rd St.
Located inside Oleta River State Park, this casual outdoor
eatery (which is covered, but otherwise open-air) is a rare
surprise for nature lovers, especially since an eager-to-
please young couple took over the daytime-only conces-
sion, upgrading the menu, at the start of 2008 The fea-
tured item is still the house-smoked fish this historic venue
first started producing in 1938 three varieties (salmon,
mahl mahl, and the signature blue marlin), available in a
sampler, salads, sandwiches/wraps, or a delightfully mild
smoked fish dip that may be Miami's best But the smoke-
house now also turns out ribs and delectable brisket Other
new additions include roasted red pepper hummus, crab
cakes, a delightfully light homemade Key lime chiffon pie,
daily specials, and on weekends, fish fries (with live music)
For basic diners there are burgers and hot dogs Entry
is directly from 163rd Street, not through the main park
entrance No admission fee $

China Restaurant
178 NE 167th St.
When you have a yen for the Americanized Chinese fusion
dishes you grew up with, all the purist regional Chinese
cuisine in the world won't scratch the itch So the menu
here, containing every authentically inauthentic Chinese-
American classic you could name, is just the ticket when
nostalgia strikes from simple egg rolls to pressed
almond duck (majorly breaded boneless chunks, with
comfortingly thick gravy) $-$$

Christine's Roti Shop
16721 NE 6th Ave.
Wraps are for wimps Atthis 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 flat-
bread is probablyjerk chicken, bone-in pieces in a spiced
stew of potatoes, cabbage, carrots, onions, and more chick-
peas But there are about a dozen other curries to choose
from, including beef, goat, conch, shrimp, trout, and duck
Take-out packages of plain roti are also available, they trans-
form myriad leftovers into tasty, portable lunches $

El Gran Inka
3155 NE 163rd St.
Somehow, when setting off to try Key Biscayne restau-
rants (like Miami's original Gran Inka), we never make it
past Jimbo's So luckily, the newer branch of this upscale
Peruvian eatery offers the same menu Though diners will
find ceviches, a hefty fried-seafood jalea, and Peru's other
expected traditional specialties, all presented far more ele-
gantly than most in town (notably a picture-perfect causa
con camarones, mashed potatoes layered with shrimp),
the contemporary Peruvian fusion creations are unique

Especially recommended are two dishes adapted from
recipes by Peru's influential nikkel (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) $$$-$$$$

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

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

Hiro's Yakko-San
17040 W. Dixie Hwy., 305-947-0064
After sushi chefs close up their own restaurants for the
night, many come here for a bite of something different
The specialty is Japanese home cooking, served in graz-
ing portions so diners can enjoy a wide variety of the
unusual dishes offered Standard sushi isn't missed when
glistening-fresh strips of raw tuna can be had in maguro
nuta mixed with scallions and dressed with habit-forming
honey-miso mustard sauce Dishes depend on the market,
but 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 chill sauce Open
till around 3 00 a m $$

1550 NE 164th St., 305-919-8393
If unusual Bangladeshi dishes like fiery pumpkin patey
(cooked with onion, green pepper, and pickled mango)
or Heelsha curry (succulently spiced hilsa, Bangladesh's
sweet-fleshed national fish) seem familiar, it's because
chef/owner Bithi Begum and her husband Tipu Raman
once served such fare at the critically acclaimed Renaisa
Their new menu's mix-and-match option also allows din-
ers 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 Early-bird
dinners (5 00 to 6 30 p m) are a bargain, as some dishes
are almost half-price Lunch is served weekends only
except by reservation, so call ahead $$-$$$

Iron Sushi
16350 W. Dixie Hwy.
(See Miami Shores listing)

JC Food
1242 NE 163rd St.
Jumbo's regular menu offers a large percentage of hard-
to-find traditional Chinese home-cooking specialties
(many using fresh and preserved Asian vegetables) pork
with bitter melon, beef with sour cabbage, chicken with
mustard green, cellophane noodle with mixed-vegetable
casserole Still, most diners come for dim sum, a huge
selection served at all hours These small plates include
chewy rice noodle rolls filled with shrimp or beef, leek
dumplings, crisp-fried stuffed taro balls, savory pork-
studded turnip cake, pork/peanut congee, custard crois-
sants, and for the brave, steamed chicken feet $$

3055 NE 163rd St., 305-354-8484
This place makes a very good tahini sauce In factthat alone a
reason enough to visit We prefer ours with the bright cheery eat-
erys delightfully oniony falafel or a veg-garnished wrap of thin-sliced
marinated beefschwarma Theyalsodoa beautifullyspiced, and
reassurnglyfresh-tasting raw kibbi naye (Middle Eastern steak
tartare) Its hard to resist putting together a grazing meal of
starters and wraps, but there's also a roster of full entrees
(with soup or salad plus starch), including tempting vegetar-
ian and seafood meals for noncarnivores $$

Kyung Ju
400 NE 167th St.
Star of the show at this long-lived Korean restaurant
(one of only a handful in Mlami-Dade County) is bulgogi
The name translates as fire meat," but isn't a refer-
ence to Koreans' love of hot chills Rather It refers to
Korean-style barbecue, which is really not barbecued but
quickly grilled after long marination in a mix of soy sauce,
sesame, sugar, garlic, and more Lovers of fiery food can
customize with dipping sauces, or the eatery's many little
banchan (included side dishes, some mild, others mouth-
searing) Pa jun, a crispy egg/scallion-based pancake, is
a crowd-pleasing starter And if the unfamiliarity seems
too scary altogether, there's a selection of Chinese food

Kebab Indian Restaurant
514 NE 167th St.
Since the 1980s this restaurant, located in an unatmo-
spheric 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 $$

King Buffet
316 NE 167th St.
In this restaurant's parking lot, midday on Sundays, the col-
orful display of vivid pinks, greens, and blues worn by myriad
families arriving for dinner in matching going-to-church out-
fits is equaled only by the eye-poppingly dyed shrimp chips
and desserts displayed inside on the buffettable Though
there's an a la carte menu, the draw here is the 100-item
(according to advertisements) all-you-can-eat spread of
dishes that are mostly Chinese, with some American input
Its steam-table stuff, but the price is right and then some
$5 95 for lunch, $8 95 for dinner $-$$

King Palace
330 NE 167th St.
The specialties here are authentic Chinatown-style barbe-
cue (whole ducks, roast pork strips, and more, displayed
in a glass case by the door), and fresh seafood dishes,
the best made with the live fish swimming in two tanks by
the dining room entrance There's also a better-than-aver-
age selection of seasonal Chinese veggies The menu is
extensive, but the best ordering strategy, since the place
is usually packed with Asians, is to see what looks good
on nearby tables, and point Servers will also steer you to
the good stuff, once you convince them you're not a chop
suey kinda person $$

Laurenzo's Market Caf6
16385 W. Dixie Hwy.
Its just a small area blocked off by grocery shelves,
buried between the wines and the fridge counters no
potted palms, and next-to-no service in this cafeteria-style

snack space But when negotiating this international gour-
met markets packed shelves and crowds has depleted
your energies, it's a handy place to refuel with eggplant
parmesan and similar Italian-American classics, steam-
tabled but 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 $-$$

Lemon Fizz
16310 W. Dixie Hwy.
Like wraps? Then you'll love this Middle Eastern cafe's
version made with saj, a circular Syrian flatbread similar
to pita but much thinner, moister, and all-around better
Upon order, diners can watch the chef custom-cook their
saj (on a scorching-hot, flying-saucer metal dome of the
same name), then roll the beautifully surface-blistered
bread around one of 27 stuffings, including za'atar and
EVOO, brined olives and labneh (creamy yogurt cheese),
falafel, steak, even dessert fillings like strawberries and
Nutella Also available soups, salads, and substantial
globally topped rice bowls, plus fresh fruitjuices and
smoothies $

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

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

Matador Argentinean Steakhouse
3207 NE 163rd St.
With Latin parilla places spreading here as fast as kudzu,
its hard to get excited about yet another all-you-can-eat
meat spread But Matador offers far more for the money
than most One dinner price ($24 95, $27 95 weekends)
includes a salad bar of more than 30 Items, unlimited
grilled proteins (many cuts of beef, sausages, chicken,
pork, assorted veggies, and even fish upon request),
crunchy steak fries, a dessert (typically charged extra
elsewhere), and even more fun, a bottle of quite quaf-
fable wine per person $$$

Panya Thai
520 NE 167th St.
Unlike authentic Chinese cuisine, there's no shortage
of genuine Thai food in and around Miami But Panya's
chef/owner, a Bangkok native, offers numerous regional
and/or rare dishes not found elsewhere Plus he doesn't
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, a study in sour/sweet/savory balance), broad rice
noodles stir-fried with eye-opening chill/garlic sauce and
fresh Thai basil, and chill-topped Diamond Duck in tangy
tamarind sauce $$-$$$

Pizza Fusion
14815 Biscayne Blvd., 305-405-6700
Savingthe earth one pizza at a time is the motto atthe franchise
of the only pizza chain to require third-party organic restaurant
certficaton at all locations Their gluten-free crusts make it mighty
friendyto pizza fanatics with food allerges Starters, salads, des-
serts, and organic wines/beers are also served And delivery is
available -- in hybrid cars, of course Specials unique to this
NMB franchise include Sunday-Thursday happy hours, a free

Continued on page 59

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com May 2009

Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009


Restaurant Listings
Continued from page 58

Kids Organic Club class on Saturdays, 10 00-1100 a m,
and varied Monday-Wednesday freebies $-$$

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

Roasters & Toasters
18515 NE 18th Ave.
Attention ex-New Yorkers Is your idea of food pornogra-
phy one of the Carnegie Dell's mile-high pastrami sand-
wiches? Well, Roasters will dwarf them Even a mouth
like Angelina Jolie's couldn't fit around a "Carnegie-style"
monster containing, according to the menu, a full pound
of succulent meat (really 14 pounds, we weighed it), for
a mere 15 bucks All the other Jewish deli classics are
here too, including just-sour-enough pickles, just-sweet-
enough slaw, silky hand-sliced nova or lox, truly red-rare
roast beef, and the cutest two-bite mini-potato pancakes
ever eight per order, served with sour cream and
applesauce $$

Sang's Chinese Restaurant
1925 NE 163rd St.
Open late (12 30 a m most nights) since 1990,
Sang's has an owner who previously cooked in NYC's
Chinatown, and 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 cucum-
ber The extensive third menu offers dim sum, served
until 4 00 p m A limited live tank allows seasonal sea-
food dishes like lobster with ginger and scallion More
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.
At this unique Talwanese eatery, run by a trio of Talpel-
trained female chefs, all seafood, poultry, and meats
in the budget-priced entrees ($6 95) are mock imita-
tions made from wheat gluten, tofu, and vegetables But
don't mock it till you try the quite beefy pepper steak, or
smoking duck, with slices that mimic the charcuterie item
down to convincing faux fat Other main dishes feature
recognizable veggies or noodles, including appealingly
chewy curried chow fun As for the rest of the name icee
is shaved ice, an over-the-top dessert that's a sort of a
slurpee sundae, with toppings that vary from the familiar
(fresh fruits) to the weird (grass jelly, sweet corn, kidney
beans, rice balls, chocolate pudding) And the bubble tea
is a must-not-miss Using housemade syrup (as opposed
to most establishments store-bought stuff), the cold,
refreshing boba comes in numerous flavors (mango, taro,
even actual tea), all supplemented with signature black
tapioca balls that, slurped through large-diameter straws,
are a guaranteed giggle $

Siam Square
54 NE 167th St.
Open until 100 a m every day except Sunday (when is
closes at midnight), this relatively new addition to North
Miami Beach's "Chinatown" strip has become a popu-
lar late-night gathering spot for chefs from other Asian
restaurants And why not? The food is fresh, nicely pre-
sented, 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 $-$$

Tuna's Raw Bar and Grille
17850 W. Dixie Hwy.
When Tuna's moved in 2006 from the marina space it
had occupied for more than 30 years, it lost its water-
front location, its old-fashioned fish-house ambiance,
and its outdoor deck But now it has gained new owners,
a new name, a dazzling outdoor bar and dining area,
and a newly impressive selection of raw-bar specialties
cold-water oysters from the Northeast, plus Blue Points,
Malpecs, Island Creeks, and more Traditional house
favorites remain, and the emphasis is still on fresh fish
from local waters Open daily till 2 00 a m, the place
can get rather festive after midnight, but since the kitch-
en is open till closing, Tuna's draws a serious late-night
dining crowd, too $$-$$$

Anthony's Coal-Fired Pizza
17901 Biscayne Blvd.
The last four digits of the phone number actually spell
"COAL" And that's what it's all about here -- a coal-
fired oven (like that at Lombardi's, Patsy's, John's, or
Grimaldi's in New York) producing the intense 800-degree
heat to turn out, in a mere three or four minutes, a pie
with the classic thin, crisp-bottomed, beautifully char-
bubbled crust that fans of the above legendary pizzerias
crave -- at any cost Expect neither bargain-chain prices, a
huge selection of toppings (these aren't the kind of clunky
crusts you overload), nor much else on the menu except
a hefty salad and some onion-topped chicken wings that
are also coal-oven tasty Anthony's does just a few things,
and does them right $$

Bella Luna
19575 Biscayne Blvd. Aventura Mall,
If the menu here looks familiar, it should It's identi-
cal to that at the Upper Eastside's Luna Cafe and,
with minor variations, at all the rest of Tom Billante's
eateries (Rosalia, Villagglo, Carpacclo), right down to
the typeface But no argument from here In a mall a
setting more accustomed to food court, steam-tabled
stuff dishes like carpaccio al salmon (crudo, with
portobellos, capers, parmesan slices, and lemon/toma-
to dressing) and linguine carbonara (in creamy sauce
with pancetta and shallots) are a breath of fresh, albeit
familiar, air $$-$$$

Bourbon Steak
19999 W. Country Club Dr.
(Fairmont Hotel, Turnberry Resort)
At Bourbon Steak, a venture in the exploding restaurant
empire of chef Michael Mina, a multiple James Beard
award winner, steakhouse fare is just where the fare
starts There are also Mina's ingenious signature dishes,
like an elegant deconstructed lobster/baby vegetable pot
pie, a raw bar, and enough delectable vegetable/seafood
starters and sides (duck fat friesl) for noncarnivores to
assemble a happy meal But don't neglect the steak -
flavorful dry-aged Angus, 100-percent Wagyu American
"Kobe," swoonworthy grade A5 Japanese Kobe, and but-
ter-poached prime rib, all cooked to perfection under the
supervision of on-site executive chef Andrew Rothschild,
formerly of the Forge, meaning he knows his beef (Mina
himself is absentee) $$$$$

Chef Allen's
19088 NE 29th Ave;
After 20 years of success in the same location, many
chefs would coast on their backlog of tried-and-true dish-
es And It's doubtful that kindly Allen Susser would freak
out his many regulars by eliminating from the menu the
Bahamlan lobster and crab cakes (with tropical fruit
chutney and vanilla beurre blanc) But lobster-lovers
will find that the 20th anniversary menus also offer new
excitements like tandoori-spiced rock lobster, along with
what might be the ultimate mac'n'cheese lobster crab
macaroni in a Frls vodka sauce with mushrooms, scal-
lions, and parmesan The famous dessert souffle's flavor
changes daily, but it always did $$$$$

II Migliore
2576 NE Miami Gardens Dr.
Reminiscent of an intimate Tuscan villa, chef Neal
Cooper's attractive trattoria gets the food right, as well
as the ambiance As in Italy, dishes rely on impeccable
ingredients and straightforward recipes that don't
overcomplicate, cover up, or otherwise muck about
with that perfection Fresh fettuccine with white truffle
oil and mixed wild mushrooms needs nothing else
Neither does the signature Polio Al Mattone, marinated
in herbs and cooked under a brick, require preten-
tious fancification And even low-carb dieters happily
go to hell in a hand basket when faced with a mound
of potatoes alla Toscana, fried herb-sprinkled French
fries Located west of Biscayne Boulevard in the Davis
Plaza shopping mall, across from Ojus Elementary
School $$-$$$

Mahogany Grille
2190 NW 183rd St.
Formerly Ruby and Jean's Soul Food Cuisine, a popular
but strictly neighborhood cafeteria, Mahogany Grille has
drawn critical raves and an international as well as local
clientele -since retired major league outfielder Andre
Dawson and his brother Vincent Brown acquired the place
in early 2007 The diner decor is gone, replaced by white
tablecloths and, naturally, mahogany The food is a sort
of trendy yet traditional soul fusion, heaping platters from
several African diaspora regions Carolina Low Country
(buttery cheese grits with shrimp, sausage, and cream
gravy), the Caribbean (conch-packed fritters or salad), and
the Old South (lightly buttermilk-battered fried chicken)
The chicken is perhaps Miami's best, made even better
with the Grille's waffles $$-$$$

20475 Biscayne Blvd.
305-937-2777; www.pilarrestaurant.com
Chef/owner Scott Fredel previously worked for Norman
Van Aken and Mark Militello He has been executive chef
at Rumi, and cooked at NYC's James Beard House Armed
with those impressive credentials, Fredel and his wife

launched Pilar (named for Hemingways boat) aiming to
prove that top restaurants can be affordable Consider
it now proven Florlbbean-style seafood is the specialty,
dishes fresh hearts of palm slaw and Caribbean curry
sauce, rock shrimp spring rolls with sweet soy glaze, and
yellowtail snapper with tomato-herb vinaigrette and a
potato/leek croqueta Don't let the strip-mall location fool
you The restaurant itself is elegant $$-$$$

Pizza Roma
19090 NE 29th Ave.
Despite its name, this homey hidden eatery serves not
Rome's wood-cooked, crunchy-crusted pizzas but New York-
style pies with medium-thick crusts pliable enough to fold in
half for neat street eating Unlike chains, though, this indie is
accommodating, so if you want your crust thin and crisp, just
ask Also featured are Italian-American entrees like baked
manicotti that'ss "manl-goat", for those not from NJ) big
enough to share, and sub sandwiches, here called "bullets,"
to put you in a Sopranos frame of mind The neighborhood
friendliness extends to kids, and there's a TV, plus coolers of
beer and plonk, for sports fans $$

The Soup Man
20475 Biscayne Blvd. #G-8
The real soup man behind this franchise is Al Yeganeh,
an antisocial Manhattan restaurant proprietor made
notorious, on a Seinfeld episode, as "the soup Nazi On
the menu ten different premium soups each day (from
a rotating list of about 50) The selection is carefully
balanced among meat/poultry-based and vegetarian,
clear and creamy (like the eatery's signature shellfish-
packed lobster bisque), chilled and hot, familiar (chicken
noodle) and exotic (mulligatawny) All soups come with
gourmet bread, fruit, and imported chocolate Also available
are salads, sandwiches, and wraps, a la carte or in soup-plus
combos $-$$

Sushi Siam
19575 Biscayne Blvd.
(See Miami / Upper Eastside listing)

May 2009 Biscayne Times www.BiscayneTimes.com

May 2009

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VI)L 16445 W Dixie H Vy
OPEN 7 DAYS: 7am Op, Sunday: Sam 5pm ( yes, we have fresh herbs & fresh juice!)

Ad valid until May 31, 2009. While supplies last.

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May 2009

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