We are well into the dog days of summer, so maybe it’s time for a palate cleanser. These local restaurants have switched things up, offering summer-friendly menus with seasonal ingredients that have our mouths watering. Or maybe that is sweat.
Roasted summer beet salad
Recently named No. 3 in Travel + Leisure’s The Top 10 Greater Miami Beach Resort Hotels list, Essensia Restaurant at The Palms Hotel & Spa has a new Chef de Cuisine: his name is Ilde Ferrer. His pedigree includes Ortanique on the Mile, the Setai Hotel, and Manhattan’s Le Bernardin and Union Square Café.
In keeping with his love of Florida’s farms and sustainably sourced ingredients, his new seasonal menu spotlights local ingredients, plus herbs and greens from the restaurant’s on-site organic Chef’s Garden.
Standout dishes include beet salad with Florida avocado and sunflower seeds, local rock shrimp and watercress risotto with lemon zest aioli and red onion, and butter poached Floridian lobster served with Floridian sweet corn and orange saffron butter. Cocktails like the Hot and Bothered serve as the perfect refresher.
Miami’s favorite Asian food hall is serving up a new selection of craft cocktails, like the #FEELINGLUCKY Mule, made with Ketel One vodka, matcha tea, Swedish Punsch, vanilla, pineapple and ginger beer.
Or try the Hola Vera, made with Hangar 1 vodka, aloe, lavender, mint, honey, ginger and absinthe.
We’re also loving the Happy Endings, which blends Maestro Dobel tequila, Ilegal mezcal, cantaloupe, wasabi, lime and celery bitters. As if that wasn’t enough to get you sipping, 1-800-LUCKY will also offer a selection of Japanese whiskies that includes the elusive Yamazaki 18-year and the Hakushu 18-year single malt.
Looking for a spot to power lunch like a boss? LaMuse Cafe at Avant Gallery in Miami’s financial district has you covered. Their new Executive Lunch prix-fixe three-course menu offers a range of dishes, including the brand new ERTHBurger (a meatless patty that’s to die for), every Wednesday at noon and 1 p.m. for just $25.
Breath easy — your summer bod is safe. A brand new menu at Chefs Jeff McInnis and Janine Booth’s Root & Bone keeps the focus on hearty Southern cooking, with newdishes that focus on the lighter side of Southern cuisine. We’re talking plates like local mango and watermelon served with watercress, cucumber, lime, cayenne, mint and olive oil, and a delectable Carrot Root Crunch, made with ginger, yogurt, crunchy carrots, lentils, arugula, fresh lemon and salsa verde.
Recently-opened Palat in Upper Buena Vista is serving up Italian-inspired dishes that pair perfectly with the season. Highlights off the new summer menu include grilled Pompano with zucchini sofrito, pea risotto with acquerello rice, snapper filet with oreganata and crushed potatoes and of course, tomato gazpacho with focaccia croutons.
Boulud Sud Miami kicked off their Miami Spice Summer offerings for dinner. The menu — which includes three courses for $39 — spotlights seasonal dishes like a chilled melon soup, summer chicken tagine, and lemon lavender cake. You’ll also see some familiar favorites, like the octopus a la plancha and seared Mediterranean branzino. If you’re in the mood for a cocktail, try the new Lavandula, a boozy gin rendition of a lemonade. The spicy Smoke & Fire, on the other hand, presents mezcal, grapefruit, and lime in a twist on the classic Paloma.
La Placita, chef José Mendín’s modern approach to Puerto Rican food, in conjunction with Spanish television celebrity Julián Gil, shows flashes of brilliance, but there are some misfires. Price is a concern.