A Fork on the Road

Latin American flavors united at South Beach’s Bolivár


If you go

What: Bolivár Fusion Restaurant

Address: 661 Washington Ave., Miami Beach

Contact: 305-397-8399

Hours: Noon-10 p.m. Sunday-Tuesday, noon-11 p.m. Wednesday, noon-2 a.m. Thursday-Saturday

Prices: Appetizers $4-$8, ceviche $9.99-$14, entrees $9.99-$16, desserts $6

FYI: Live Latin jazz on weekends. BYOB for the 6-8 p.m. Tuesday wine tasting with cheese boards, and get a free meal if your bottle wins.

Main Dish

Ecuadoran Shrimp Ceviche

If you prefer your seafood cooked, you’ll like this recipe adapted from southamericanfood.about.com. Serve with popcorn or corn chips and hot sauce.

1 small red onion, thinly sliced

1 cup corn kernels, boiled

1 pound small to medium shrimp, peeled, cleaned and steamed

Juice of 1 lime

1/4 cup fresh-squeezed orange juice

1/2 cup ketchup

1/4 cup packed cilantro leaves, chopped

Place the onion slices in a bowl of cold salted water, and let soak for 20 minutes. Drain and rinse. Combine onions, corn and shrimp in bowl. Whisk lime and orange juices with ketchup, and season with salt to taste. Toss with shrimp mixture. Chill until ready to serve. Add cilantro just before serving. Makes 4 servings.

Per serving: 174 calories (9 percent from fat), 1.8 g fat (0 saturated, 0 monounsaturated), 143 mg cholesterol, 17.7 g protein, 24.1 g carbohydrates, 1.7 g fiber, 1,076 mg sodium.


In a bohemian South Beach space named for Simón Bolivár, the South American liberator who dreamed of uniting the continent, Jairo Hurtado has brought together the flavors of Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Chile, Argentina and Brazil.

A native of Cartagena, Jairo studied industrial design, and then went to New York, where he met his Lebanese-Venezuelan wife. They relocated 10 years ago to Miami, and previously ran a Colombian café.

Hurtado applied his designer’s eye to Bolivár’s distressed walls, colorful paintings and skylights, and has a hand in the kitchen. There’s a full bar where you can put together a platter of tapas, from garlic shrimp to fried artichokes, to accompany wine.

Whet your appetite with mazorca (grilled corn on the cob with spicy butter and crumbly cotija cheese) or the Ecuadoran crab cake with spicy aioli that’s good with a glass of citrusy lulo juice or sangria spiked with aguardiente.

A variety of traditional and fusion-style ceviches in passion fruit, mango and lulo purees come in shot glasses with cinnamon-laced sweet potato chunks and choclo (Andean corn).

Main plates include salmon in Creole sauce with cilantro rice and fried green plantains, pan-seared fish fillet (swai) in mango herb salsa and Bolivian grilled chicken in mushroom sauce with mashed potatoes. There’s also churrasco, picanha and chanchito (pork chops with passion fruit sauce).

Find the dessert menu in a Cuban cigar box, and end with the torta negra wine cake.

Linda Bladholm is a Miami food writer and personal chef who blogs at FoodIndiaCook.com.

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