First Look: Plat Bleu

The goods: Miami gets a new mini-French bistro at the Delano Hotel in the form of Plat Bleu. Located in the swanky lobby area outside the hotel’s Blue Door restaurant, this new incarnation boasts a less-formal atmosphere, a late-night menu and ample people watching in the hotel’s much-traversed social corridor. The new space still packs a dramatic design punch with oversized Queen Anne style tufted camelback sofas white dining chairs and Carrara marble-topped bistro tables.

This outpost is open continuously from 11:30 a.m., with an expanded “Late Bleu” menu nightly from 11 p.m. until 2 a.m., and until 4 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays, making this a post-party stop for South Beach revelers.

The grub: A smattering of bistro staples along with the greatest hits of Blue Door’s menu. Though this is formulated as a more casual option to fine dining, the prices still remain in upscale territory. Starters range $9 for soup to the mid-$20’s for seared tuna and beef Carpaccio. Mains are $18 for a burger or flatbread and climb to $39 for sea bass or NY strip steak.

The Delano’s new Executive Chef, Maria Manso, brings a Brazilian influence to bear on French cuisine while also staying true to bistro classics like poached foie gras, chilled vichyssoise, steak tartar with capers and truffle oil and a hearty steak frites. Those who love the giant taro root mousse ravioli from Blue Door can order that here as well as the “crabavocat” salad made with blue crab and guacamole. Gussied-up munchies include Kobe beef sliders with crispy pancetta, a gluttonous mac and cheese accented with gruyere and black forest ham and a hot-pressed duck confit medianoche. The late-night menu offered at 11 p.m. should satisfy famished club goers with traditional brasserie fare like steamed mussels in white wine sauce, French onion soup, eggs and chorizo and a croquet monsieur.

South Beach nightlife fixtures now have a late-night spot to feast on brasserie classics in the Delano’s storied lobby scene.

Plat Bleu at the Delano Hotel, 1685 Collins Ave, 305-674-6400. Open daily at 11:30 a.m., nightly from 11 p.m. until 2 a.m., and until 4 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays.