Rincon Escondido: Still Spanish but With a Dash of Argentine Influence

Photos by Carla Torres
Cheese bombs. Literally.
It's not atypical for restaurants to change ownership. It is, however, unusual for restaurants to leave most of the previous furnishings and menu items in place after such a change takes effect. Such is the case with Rincon Escondido, Edgewater's hidden Spanish gem.

Though Rincon Escondido has been serving authentic Spanish tapas since 2011, its new Argentine owner has planted some of his roots in the menu. There's still gazpacho and gambas al ajillo (which have been left pretty much untouched), but meatballs have an Argentine twist in the sauce, and for dessert, choco tarta has the consistency of an alfajor but with layers of chocolate.

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The Federal After Three Years: Free Champagne, Phuc Yea, and Blue Piano Replays

Short Order alum and the Federal's Aniece Meinhold can attest to the old adage of third time being a charm. First came Blue Piano, then popped up Phuc-Yea!, and shortly thereafter, the shuttering of the insanely named Vietnamese pop-up, The Federal Drink & Provisions was born in a matter of a month.

She and business partner (as well as life partner) Cesar Zapata struck gold with their unconventional yet comforting American fare that included jar-o-duck and pig wings from day one. And three years later, the same hype still buzzes amongst locals who flock to brunch every Sunday or sell out their monthly wine dinners.

In honor of this milestone, the Federal is taking the entire week (starting today) to celebrate, including the re-introduction of Sunday supper. "We did our friends and family January 12th, 2012 and opened the doors on 16th," she reminisces. "That entire time is this entire week, so it's only right to celebrate accordingly."

See also: The Federal Food Drink and Provisions: New neighborhood spot features ducks in jars and pig wings

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December 2014 Restaurant Openings and Closings

Photo by Carla Torres
Scott Conant's Corsair is open.
Welcome to 2015. A new year is bringing several new restaurants, many of them helmed by celebrity chefs.

We're especially looking forward to Tom Colicchio's Beachcraft, Sandbox, and Tom on Collins, all at the 1 Hotel and Homes in South Beach. STK Miami is also poised to open at the same property.

The world's largest Nobu is another hotly anticipated restaurant, along with PB Station from the Pubbelly Boys, Naked Lunch by chef Ralph Pagano, Jamie DeRosa's Izzy's Fish & Oyster, and the Vagabond Restaurant.

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Ralph Pagano's Naked Lunch Coming Soon

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Laine Doss
Ralph Pagano gets "naked" again.
Ralph Pagano, owner of Naked Taco, the South Beach Mexican restaurant with a party vibe and chef-driven food, is opening Naked Lunch at the University of Miami Life Science and Technology Park.

The restaurant, a combination deli and diner, will open some time in the end of January 2015 and will be open Monday to Friday for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Naked Lunch will also offer free parking.

See also: Naked Taco's Weekend Brunch: Eggs and Tequila Crush Your Hangover

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STK Miami: Flood Delays Opening Until 2015

STK Miami
STK Miami: Setback to reopening.
STK, the sultry South Beach steakhouse that was set to reopen at 1 Hotel & Homes, has run into a major setback.

The restaurant, which was supposed to open in December, according to parent company the ONE Group Hospitality, Inc., sustained water damage after a hotel subcontractor broke a sprinkler head above the restaurant.

See also: STK to Reopen at 1 Hotel & Homes December 12

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Tonight: Josh's Deli Does Barbecue Eel, Braised Goat, and Pig Trotter Pizza

Photo by Jose de Las Casas
Barbecue eel pizza
Like most of the country, Josh Marcus loves pizza. So much so that he's dedicated Thursday nights to flipping dough and topping it with exotic ingredients at his Surfside delicatessen, Josh's Deli. The ingredients at hand are goat, eel and pig's feet. And the dough is a special combination of bread flour and Italian 00.

"I'm not trying to compete with Lucali, which I think is the best pizza in the city, or any other pizza for that matter," says Marcus. "It's more about making really great bread and using that as a vehicle for other great flavors. It's only called pizza cause it's round and made in an oven."

See also: Josh's Deli to Begin Dinner Service: Escargot Pasta and Bone Marrow Pizza

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Swine Serves More Than Just Pig: "There's More to Southern Cuisine Than Smoked Brisket"

All photos by Carla Torres
Swine: more than just pig.
If you've been to Swine since it's opening in March 2013, you know the Coral Gables eatery is fond of hog. But a year and a half in, the restaurant has decided to adjust to the demanding palates of the surrounding community, deviating from pork-centric and heavy dishes and coming up with lighter creations using locally sourced ingredients to appeal to health-conscious gourmands and locavores.

The process started several months ago when 50 Eggs culinary director Clayton Miller began thinking about Swine's impending two-year anniversary. "The name of the restaurant is Swine, and we understand that, but ultimately we want to focus on the fact that at its roots, Swine is a Southern restaurant."

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Thirty Years of Tropical Chinese: "Chinese Way Is to Fill the Tummy"

All photos by Carla Torres
No birthday cake; just dim sum.
A five-year restaurant run in this city is quite an accomplishment. Now multiply that times six and you'll get the magic number of years Tropical Chinese has seen steamed dim sum carts roll throughout its crimson, lantern-lit interior.

The 30th anniversary came with a celebration last night that invited community members who've supported the business throughout the past three decades to revel in the successes of owner Mei Yu and her brother Gregory. Tropical Chinese was the endeavor of their parents, who migrated to Miami from Taiwan in 1984 when Mei and her brother were teenagers.

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Scarpetta's Marlon Rambaran Unveils New Dishes (Photos)

All photos by Carla Torres
A different kind of pasta and basil.
Pasta lovers shed a tear when it was announced that Nina Compton would be leaving Scarpetta. Since the swank restaurant opened almost six years ago at the Fontainebleau, Scarpetta's kitchen has bid farewell to two great chefs: first Michael Pirolo, who went on to open Macchialina, and recently Compton. But as they say, the show must go on.

To make the transition seamless, Scott Conant appointed Marlon Rambaran, whose resume includes time at Le Cirque and Tallievent, as saucier and sous chef at Le Bec, and as chef tournant at Restaurant Daniel. Most recently, he was sous chef at Gotham Steak.

For the last few months, Rambaran has been working on the menu, which he's now ready to introduce."We're trying to stay away from the classics," he says. "Everyone knows the spaghetti and basil. We want to reinvent the wheel if you will."

Short Order was invited to a preview of this new wheel of dishes, which starting next week, you'll be able to order.

See also: Nina Compton Leaves Scarpetta (Video)

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A Day With Daniel Boulud at Swank Farms and Night at DB Bistro (Photos)

All photos by Carla Torres
Are those beans for me?
After spending an entire day with Daniel Boulud, I realized why the 60-year-old chef and restaurateur with 14 properties under his belt is showing no signs of slowing down.

So many chefs have come out of Boulud's kitchens. In Miami alone, I can think of three (outside of his own restaurant, of course) off the top of my head -- Andrew Carmellini and Conor Hanlon from the Dutch, as well as Scarpetta's chef de cuisine Marlon Rambaran.

Boulud visits Miami several times a year. This time around, after 13 years of locally sourcing from Swank Farms in West Palm Beach, he finally thought it would be nice to put a face to the farmers whose produce he's been using. He also cooked for them -- along with a dining room full of fans. Boulud prepared the new fall menu items at DB Bistro Moderne, all of which highlight local purveyors.

See also: Doral Japanese-Peruvian Gem Tira.D.Toss Hides in Plain Sight

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