From meals made on volcanic rocks to a Brazilian spin on sushi, this is the trio of South Florida restaurants you need to know about today.
Scott Conant’s second South Florida restaurant (his first is Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star Scarpetta Miami Beach) is the newest offering at the Forbes Travel Guide Recommended Turnberry Isle Miami. From its name, menu, details and design by Meyer Davis Studio, the restaurant, which opened with high acclaim in December, highlights what Conant calls “sprezzatura,” an Italian term for effortless sophistication — think elegance meets rustic charm with a kitchen focused on freshness, layered textures and locally sourced ingredients. Entrees are hallmarks of Conant’s creations, from delectable slow-roasted salmon with truffles to luscious balsamic-roasted lacquered duck and short rib “lasagna.” The view is just as impressive, so ask to dine on the 1,400-square-foot terrace looking out onto one of the resort’s rolling green golf courses.
Just imagine having your meal cooked on lava rocks tableside with the Miami River and downtown skyline as your backdrop. Modern Garden, the lounge sister of Seaspice next door, is a hot stone and crudo concept that delivers an experience for all the senses, from smell (exquisitely prepared Dover sole and tandoori lamb chops) and sound (the sizzling fare seared atop 850-degree volcanic stone slabs) to sight (a swank clientele and even swankier design touches). Like Seaspice, aesthetics are of the utmost importance around Modern Garden. A permanent art installation stretches across two large trees in the space while teardrop light fixtures hanging from the branches cast a soft glow.
This Miami Beach newcomer is the first U.S. outpost of the popular Brazilian modern sushi eatery. The made-to-share menu, which takes a sophisticated and creative approach to traditional Japanese cuisine, is served in a hip yet unpretentious setting. The inside flaunts expansive glass tables and sleek red Italian leather chairs, while the patio has a more relaxed vibe with hand-woven rattan seating and wooden tables. Either place you end up, you’re guaranteed unobstructed views of the bay and Miami skyline. When you look at the dinner options, expect to find lots of sushi made with South American ingredients (SoHo’s ceviche has Brazilian peppers in it) along with cooked dishes like curry Wagyu beef cheeks, bass with bacon sake and mac ’n uni (sea urchin). Have a pre-dinner drink at the 12-seat, back-lit molecular cocktail bar where housemade foams, gelatins and liquid nitrogen are used to create avant-garde libations.