Art Basel: Where to Find Beautiful Food in Miami
At 9 pm on a Friday, a restaurant kitchen is busier than it has been all week. The smell of sizzling butter and seared steaks lingers by the stove. Pans are tossed back and forth, making a scratching sound against the hot burners.
billwisserphoto.com Sautéed Florida pink shrimp with Key Lime yogurt and red radish at J&G Grill
Amidst the madness, a chef -- wearing an impeccable white coat -- bends over a stainless steel counter. Around her, there are piles of white plates, pending tickets, and a loud, stressed-out expeditor. She steadily lifts an edible flower with a silver tweezer and sets it on an ivory platter, then follows with sliced hamachi, hibiscus foam and, ultimately, spherified ponzu. The platter leaves the kitchen in the hands of a waiter prepared to explain the dish. It has all the intricacies of a modernized Giuseppe Arcimboldo painting. The food isn't rustic. It's beautiful, pristine and precise.
What follows is our list for Art Basel-goers, those who want to eat food as lovely as a million-dollar art collection. Tweezer-plated fare comes at a high price but, like a good painting, just consider it a smart investment.
Alex Broadwell Cuatro leches ice cream
Todd Erickson graduated from the Culinary Institute of America, worked at acclaimed eateries like Zuma, and opened up the hip gastro-lounge Haven in Miami Beach. The eatery is surrounded by LCD screens, blasting tunes by Amirn van Buuren, and fare with liquid nitrogen. Dishes include sub-zero ice cream made with special mix-ins. Or Swedish meatballs, cremini mushrooms and lingonberry gastrique. Prices aren't that high -- about $50 per person -- but let's wait and see what happens to ordering tendencies after three or four cocktails. Libations include ingredients like "blood orange" caviar and calamansi juice. Pretty, indeed.