James Beard Award-winning Miami chef and restaurateur Michael Schwartz next week will reset his fine-dining, high-end restaurant The Cypress Room into an upscale bar and grill called Cypress Tavern.
The new restaurant will debut Oct. 29 at 3620 NE Second Ave. in Miami. Schwartz and Bradley Herron, executive chef of Schwartz’s Genuine Hospitality Group, retooled the dinner and brunch menus with expanded appetizer and entree options and lower prices.
“The idea is to bring Cypress back to being a familiar, friendly, neighborhood place that’s a little less of a hush-hush, precious restaurant only for extremely special occasions,” Schwartz said to the Miami Herald.
He acknowledged that The Cypress Room, which earned a 3.5-star review after opening in spring 2013, failed to draw the consistent crowds that stream into his other Miami restaurants.
“I love The Cypress Room. I think part of the problem was that Miami didn’t love it as much as I did. We were never as busy as we thought we should have been,” Schwartz said.
Cypress Tavern’s menu has a French brasserie-like tilt, with duck confit, steak tartare and steamed mussels on the appetizer side, and steak frites, pork schnitzel and niçoise-style albacore tuna among the new entrees.
Prices will come down for dishes carrying over from The Cypress Room, like the Cypress burger (was $24, now $22) — “The burger’s better than ever,” Schwartz said — roasted short rib (was $42, now $35), bucatini carbonara (was $28, now $22), and French onion soup (was $17, now $12).
“Everything’s just a little more simple, a little less refined,” Schwartz said.
Cypress Tavern will serve dinner Tuesday-Sunday and brunch Saturday-Sunday.
Evan S. Benn is Miami Herald food editor: 305-376-4624, @EvanBenn
WHERE: 3620 NE Second Ave., Miami
WHEN: Dinner Tuesday-Sunday from 6 p.m., brunch Saturday-Sunday 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m.
MORE: Reservations available at firstname.lastname@example.org, 305-520-5197, cypresstavern.com