Slow Food Miami president Renee Frigo Graeff agrees.
Gabys food has a depth of flavor thats really lovely. Each thing on the plate is so important and takes so much time. Is there anybody else in the city whos working this way? I think shes like our couturier of dining, Graeff says.
Robert Hudson, managing partner of the law firm Baker & McKenzie, and Jocelyn Cortez, founder and CEO of the Minerva Capital Group investment firm, have each hosted private dinners at Copperbox, and both praise Machados passionate artistry.
Gaby is really committed. Shes into food in an intellectual way. Shes doing this because she wants to, she loves it and has a real passion for it, Hudson says.
For Gaby, food is an art, Cortez says. She caters to a very sophisticated palate, the kind you develop when you travel and have tasted so much. She delivers that in the course of a three-hour experience.
In July, Machado and her husband will take a break to go to Europe and recharge gastronomically. When theyre not working the sometimes brutally long days of a chef-restaurateur and an investment advisor, they nest in a small South Beach apartment with an American bulldog, three little Chihuahuas and two big Maine Coon cats. The animals, Machado says, have a nanny, because we work long hours. And I weigh their food, too.
Machado, who has an insulin pump nestled under her chefs jacket, raised $10,000 this season for the Diabetes Research Institute by donating private Copperbox dinners as prizes at fundraisers. Diagnosed with diabetes at age 2, she has been advised by her doctor not to risk pregnancy, and she and her husband are fine with that.
Weve been together so long, I dont know how to introduce anyone else into the relationship, she says.
Alcantara-Lansberg drops by Copperbox on many of its atelier nights, and he takes note of the moment when the kitchen lights are turned off and his wife peers out the window at guests surrounded by hydrangeas and roses, bathed in candlelight, savoring her food and chatting away.
When she feels that hum, thats what shes looking to do, he says. She gets home and cant stop talking, shes so happy.