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Feb 1, 2012 11:03 AM


Has anyone tried Norman Van Aiken's new restaurant?

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  1. Really??? No one has tried it?

    5 Replies
    1. re: gblcsw

      It is on miami restaurant power rankings.

      1. re: gblcsw

        I've not been but folks I know who have tried it have enjoyed it. The regular menu is very much a list of Norman's "classics" (saffron conch chowder, french toast w foie gras, yellowtail with a "belly" of mashed potatoes, Mongolian veal chop ...) and he's got Jeffrey Brana, who used to be the CDC at Norman's in the Gables with him, so I imagine they're done very much as they were back in the day. Every month they do a "Voyager's Menu" with newer stuff as well.

          1. re: gblcsw

            Based on this board's recommendations, we went there Saturday night and had the wine paired tasting menu. All the items listed by Frod above were served with the exception of the veal chop. In addition, was the Havana pork, a stuffed shrimp, and a chocolate concoction for dessert, and the amuse Boucher which was a very tasty shrimp bite. The fois was an additional $15 as was the three cheese selection we shared. Although other posters seem divided on the view, we felt that the unexceptional view turned rather pretty once it turned dark out and the city lights (and especially the red lit Freedom Tower) shone. The room was attractive. The service was exceptional. The food was very good with the chowder our favorite (despite the sort of pretentious explanation of same) with the fois a very close second. Our least favorite, although the waiter said it was one of their most popular menu items, was the yellowtail as it was somewhat bland and mundane. The cheese selections were decent although the choices were pretty mellow with only one blue which the waiter made a point of repeatedly warning us that it was strong, despite it being a typical blue cheese. The wine pairings were good, although not earth-shattering with a heavy focus on whites. We had a very enjoyable meal that we believed to be good value and would definitely return. I wish there was someplace like this in Broward as the hour long drive home after all that wine, particularly on a rainy night, is not ideal. Thanks for asking about this restaurant or we'd have never known about it and would have missed out on a great dining experience.

            1. re: zook

              I'm with you, Zook...Wish there was anything close to this quality in Broward!

      2. I should update my comment (pretty sure I've done so elsewhere) that I've been a couple of times and have had great meals. There's a nice mix of "Norman's Best Hits" and current creations, and the menu gets updated regularly. Not much time left, but their Miami Spice menu looks interesting and does different "themes," currently Argentina.

        I think the view out toward the Freedom Tower and the AA arena is pretty outstanding, especially if you go around dusk and see it by daylight and then see the Freedom Tower lit up.