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2007 "best bites" Miami Herald

The Chowfather AKA sobe Dec 26, 2007 10:34 AM


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    The Chowfather AKA sobe RE: The Chowfather AKA sobe Dec 26, 2007 03:17 PM

    Year in dining Miami New Times

    13 Replies
    1. re: The Chowfather AKA sobe
      eatnbmerry RE: The Chowfather AKA sobe Dec 26, 2007 11:48 PM

      Interesting thoughts, especially "we stand in danger of becoming Las Vegas-ized. Govind Armstrong, David Bouley, and Michael Mina are big-name chefs, but, like Vegas, all we get are the big names — not the chefs. We have, as I've mentioned, developed a fair amount of homegrown talent, but eminent food cities likewise rely on the import of professional culinarians from other parts of the world. Miami is very much deficient in this regard."

      It sounds that in search of more mula, some of the top guys could begin to spread themselves to thinly. This unfortunately is an ever present potential evil in a business oriented society that always wants incerasing profits each year.

      As to why Miami doesn't attract more "professional culinarians" I really don't understand? We seem to have the ingredients to attract everybody else LOL. But seriously, that is an interesting question. Michy and Michael are a great pair but it seems like we gain one lose two (Norman/Eismann).

      1. re: eatnbmerry
        Frodnesor RE: eatnbmerry Dec 27, 2007 06:13 AM

        I certainly don't always agree with Lee Klein but I thought his article had a lot of good points.

        However I don't think Miami lacks for "home-grown" talent - it's just that a number of them don't currently have restaurants operating in Miami. Michael Schwartz (Michael's Genuine), Michelle Bernstein (Michy's), Cindy Hutson (Ortanique), Douglas Rodriguez (Ola), Andrea Curto and Frank Randazzo (Talula), Mark Militello (Mark's Place), Johnny Vincencz (Johnny V), Norman Van Aken (?), Jonathan Eismann (?), Alan Susser (Chef Allen), Dewey Losasso (North 110), Kris Wessel (soon to be Red Light) (not quite homegrown but been here a while) ... and while a lot of these folks are "first generation" "mango gang" folks, there are a number of "second generation" folks who trained under them who are now starting their own places - Tim Andriola (Allan Susser, Mark Militello alum) at Timo, Jeffrey Brana (Van Aken alum) at now-departed Brana's come to mind ... this is not a bad list! I don't think either Van Aken or Eismann are lost so much as looking carefully for another opportunity.

        1. re: Frodnesor
          lax2mia RE: Frodnesor Dec 27, 2007 07:38 AM

          I was shocked that I was agreeing with Lee Klein as well.

          He did have a couple of dumb comments such as when he included PF Changs as "among some of the finest Chinese...establishments in town". Did he get paid for that? Tell me, does PF Changs specialize in Szechuan or Cantonese food? Do they do dim sum?

          Another comment is his griping that everything popping up is a steakhouse, Italian or sushi due to our residents' fickleness. Granted it's a little overreaching, but not too far from the truth.

          Some of his points ring painfully true, like the lack of bakeries, butchers and fish markets that should be more prevalent.

          1. re: lax2mia
            Frodnesor RE: lax2mia Dec 27, 2007 08:23 AM

            Yeah, saying that PF Chang's is among the finest Chinese establishments in town is about as outrageous as claiming that I invented the question mark. Nor exactly Miami's strong suit, but still ...

            1. re: Frodnesor
              taiga RE: Frodnesor May 6, 2008 12:26 PM

              I agree with both of you; however, there is virtually no Cantonese food in Miami which is like that in Guangzho, and no Szechuan food that you can find here that would be like that found in Szechuan, China. Therefore, I guess Lee Klein does have a right to bend the "truth" since it is untrue to start with.

        2. re: eatnbmerry
          mikek RE: eatnbmerry Dec 27, 2007 09:47 AM

          According to the staff at Michael's (and I think but am not 100% sure, but Michael Schwartz himself) Eismann is opening a place in the Design District.

          1. re: mikek
            Frodnesor RE: mikek Dec 27, 2007 10:29 AM

            Been lots of rumors to that effect.

        3. re: The Chowfather AKA sobe
          eatnbmerry RE: The Chowfather AKA sobe Dec 27, 2007 08:03 PM

          BTW, can anybody vouch for Fernandez's top hamburger at Kingdom or Cuban at Bin 18?


          1. re: lax2mia
            jessicam29 RE: lax2mia Dec 28, 2007 05:17 AM

            I always wondered about Kingdom.....I pass by it a few times a week and wondered if it's any good. Anyone else been there?

            1. re: jessicam29
              Frodnesor RE: jessicam29 Jan 6, 2008 03:40 PM

              Had a burger hankering and tried Kingdom's for lunch today - excellent. Tasted just like a 4th of July buger off the BBQ. Nice big meaty patty (comes in 8, 12 or monster 24 oz versions), plain or with lettuce tomato onion and a few choices of cheese. Done a perfect medium, super-juicy and tasty. Fries and onion rings were only OK but a nice casual place to kick back, have a burger and a beer, and watch a game. Decent selection of beers incl. Red Stripe. Menu also had a few other regular items and then a list of daily specials.

              1. re: Frodnesor
                eatnbmerry RE: Frodnesor Jan 6, 2008 04:22 PM

                Thanks for the report will have to stop by soon to partake.

                1. re: Frodnesor
                  The Chowfather AKA sobe RE: Frodnesor Apr 26, 2008 06:50 PM

                  Finally made it over to The Kingdom. GREAT burger. Frod, I thought the fries were very good as well. this place really reminded me of a place you'd find in New Orleans.

              2. re: lax2mia
                eatnbmerry RE: lax2mia Dec 28, 2007 01:02 PM

                My dear lax2mia,

                To refresh your memory: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/47038...

            2. dmo305 RE: The Chowfather AKA sobe Feb 12, 2008 06:00 AM

              the link is no longer working... anyone want to elaborate some more on the "best bites"?

              2 Replies
              1. re: dmo305
                The Chowfather AKA sobe RE: dmo305 May 5, 2008 08:29 PM

                I think it read something like this

                Victoria Pesce Elliott loves the gumbo at Maia's Creole Cafe, Linda Bladholm prefers deep-fried Japanese eggplant at Hiro's Yakko-San, Enrique Fernandez craves Bin No. 18's Cuban sandwich, Rochelle Koff likes the butternut squash purses at Himmarshee Bar & Grille, and Charles Buhman is a fan of the guacamole at Cantina Laredo. [Miami Herald]

                1. re: The Chowfather AKA sobe
                  dmo305 RE: The Chowfather AKA sobe May 6, 2008 12:32 AM

                  quite a memory... thanks!

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