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How is Chef Allen's? (Aventura)

I've never been and would like to take my family out for a special meal.

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  1. I haven't been for a while (we keep trying new places), but in the past it has always been very good. I understand now he is really very big into sustainable fish and locally grown food. We used to go fairly often and always enjoyed the food. Maybe someone who has gone more recently will post.

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    1. Had a wonderful dinner this past weekend. Homemade lobster lasagna appetizer,
      not too rich, light and full of delicate lobster pieces. Great fish selection
      that changes with the fresh catch of the season. I had the pan roasted mahi.
      Great presentaion and delicious. Top shelf wine list. Excellent service.

      1. I went this past weekend as well, and if you plan on going, now's the time. They've begun an early Miami Spice, so you can eat a whole meal for the price of an entree, and the portions are very good. Service was excellent, the decor is so bizarre and yet you don't necessarily notice it (unless your staring right at the mirror). Food is good, though the appetizers stick out to me more than the entrees. Desserts are excellent. Love the mango cobbler with the corn ice cream. Actually all the ice creams are creamy and delicious. I found the alcohol a little steep, especially considering we had a $90 bottle of undrinkable wine last time. Would probably byob next visit.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Icantread

          I will definitely give this place a try. Thank you.

        2. Jessie, I recommend Chef Allen's. I don't get there that often for reasons unrelated to the quality of the food but try to when they are doing a wine dinner/tasting menu. Usually good deals with an interesting menu. They usually post these dinners on their site so check it out. Look out for their "winedown wednesday" dinners @$59. The Miami Spice sneak preview menu is posted as well. Hard to find these types of tasting menus with wine pairing in Miami.

          http://www.chefallens.com/

          3 Replies
          1. re: The Chowfather AKA sobe

            They just unveiled a new menu that sounds/looks good. I will try to head over real soon and report back.
            http://chefallens.com/pdfs/menu_08_20...

            1. re: The Chowfather AKA sobe

              The new menu looks so good we just made a reservation for tomorrow night!

              1. re: dlgc

                Please report back. In the past I loved every meal I have had there. Would be interested in your comments.

          2. Apparently he is also opening a restaurant in St. Lucia at the super swank Jade Mountain resort. People there say he will be there 2 weeks per month.

            3 Replies
            1. re: rockysobe

              I heard they just reopened after a renovation and much needed update to the decor. Menu supposedly is seafood focused with lower prices than before.

              1. re: sfeatz

                Dinner last night at Chef Allens had its high point and some really low points.

                There were four of us, so we started with a large selection of apps. The shrimp and grits were the star of the evening....great! Clams casino, wild mushroom salad and lobster mac were good, not great.

                For our mains we orderd lobster with pasta, very pasty and gummy with a half lobster out of the shell. I make it better at home. I ordered the lobster stew "hot pot". It arrived in an attractive white high sided bowl with large diced potatoes that were very under cooked to the point of being hard sitting in a gray broth with a few lobster chunks. One taste and it went back...horrid! The skirt steak came plated very nicely but lacked taste and seasoning. Not a great expierence....

                We then moved on to desert...mango cobbler came out cold and hard, I'm sure it had been sitting around for a few days, the chocolate bomb was a bomb, and the banana trio was just okay.

                Chef Allen was not there last night, but that should not make a difference in the end result.This dinner was not what we had hoped it would be. We have been eating there since it opened many years ago, but I doubt any of us will ever return. It was very expensive for the little bit we enjoyed.

                1. re: dlgc

                  After long last (I was the original poster) I will be giving this restaurant a try this Friday for dinner. Please let me know if you have any last minute recs. I will post a follow-up.

              1. It had been nearly a decade since I'd been to Chef Allen's, and with the fairly recent menu and restaurant overhaul I figured it was time to go back. The place feels much less stodgy than before, with the dining space opened up, and carpets picked up in favor of stained concrete floors. The menu, as others have noted, now styles itself as a 'Modern Seafood Bistro" and picks up on a few prevalent trends - several small dishes, a focus on locally sourced, sustainable seafood, and steaks cooked on a wood-burning grill.

                The choices of entrees were fairly limited and didn't particularly excite us, so we stuck with the small dishes, which include "snack" type items as well as more traditionally sized appetizers, all in a range of $4 - 11. Although there were a couple misses, for the most part we were really pleased. Standouts were saffron arroncini, a really good shrimp & grits "brulee," Kyoto clams "hot pot", and a tableside Caesar salad that was one of the best I've had in a long time (and honestly, Caesar salads rarely get me all that excited). I was glad we went back and am impressed that after 20+ years, the restaurant is capable of learning some new tricks.

                More thoughts on our visit here ->
                http://www.foodforthoughtmiami.com/20...

                www.foodforthoughtmiami.com

                2 Replies
                1. re: Frodnesor

                  Unfortunately here to report back on a severely disappointing visit to Chef Allens about a month ago. The last time I had eaten here was many years ago so I was excited to see the improvements that had been undertaken. We ate on a Friday night, and they had a jazz player providing live entertainment. Unfortunately, there were some technical mishaps and diners had to suffer through a couple episodes of heavy feedback on the speakers- not pleasant. Also, the service left something to be desired. The waiter seemed to lack any interest in our meals, and made himself somewhat scarce. Concerning the food, five us dined, ordering at least an app and main each. The only dishes which were worth eating were the caesar (quite good), the shrimp and grits brulee (not much brulee but much flavor), and ... I think thats about it. My brother had the burger which had the most unusual off flavor throughout the meat. None of us could figure out what it was, just that it wasn't right. The arroncini i liked but i thought they were too tiny, and that the tomato sauce served alongside was too sweet. The devils on horseback paled in comparison to those served at MGFD/Senora/Pacific Time. The lobster mac and cheese was pretty light in both lobster and flavor. The crab cake got poor feedback although I did not taste it. I ordered the grilled shrimp/short ribs surf & turf which is a great idea. Unfortunately, my shrimp was practically raw in the middle, and the shortribs were tough with a thick line of gristle(or something!) running through the entire piece, making it borderline inedible. The shitake mushroom hash was fine although it was very heavy on the peppers, and light on potatoes.

                  I wanted to try the kit kat dessert but by that time we had had enough! I really wanted to like this place after such a long hiatus(between my visits) but surely I don't think I could return for quite a while, if ever. The waiter was so inattentive that he didn't even notice that 3 of 5 diners left almost their entire dinners on their plates in disgust. For a place with such a reputation, they have to get back on their grind a bit harder.

                  1. re: Frodnesor

                    I was just there on 7/18 and had several of the same appetizers - kyoto clams & the saffron arronici. They were both pretty great! Didn't realy care for the lobster mac-n-cheese... not at all what I expected. Served with penne pasta and an unusual sauce, a little too salty as well.

                    I ordered the mahi-mahi for my entree which was good, but not spectacular. It was served with a coconut milk sauce over some veggies. The one entree that I did taste that I thought was outstanding was my husband's pasta dish with florida shrimp and chorizo. The flavors were spot on delicious. I couldn't stop myself from leaning over and stealing a few bites.

                  2. A few months ago, I ate at Chef Allen's. I was unaware that it had become a seafood restaurant. The ambiance is nice. The service was C+. I would say that I found their menu very limited. The food was good, albeit bland for my taste. I really like Allen Susser as a person. I hope he works out the kinks.

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                    Chef Allen's
                    19088 NE 29th Ave., Aventura, FL 33180

                    1. Finally tried the "new" Chef Allen last night and was very disappointed. Very limited menu which should mean that everything on there would be good. Sadly, that was not the case. We started out with the mussels which were very small and a little stringy. The sauce was quite flavorful, but they really should have a conversation with their supplier about the quality of the mussels. The mixed ceviche (which was recommended by our server) was very bland and again the quality of the seafood was poor. At this point we were a little afraid because we had already ordered the paella (also recommended). It was a pretty small portion - two large and over-grilled shrimp, several of those nasty mussels, and the most overcooked and tough chorizo I have ever tasted. The rice was very flavorful, but it couldn't save the dish. I do like Allen Susser and think he's a very charitable and nice man, but if that's the standard at his "new" restaurant, I don't know how long he can keep it going.

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                      Chef Allen's
                      19088 NE 29th Ave., Aventura, FL 33180

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: pilches

                        We have gone to Chef Allen's recently and it was great, and so went back with friends and we all enjoyed our meals.

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                        Chef Allen's
                        19088 NE 29th Ave., Aventura, FL 33180