Food

José Andrés suddenly shutters one South Florida restaurant. Here’s what it means for the other

José Andrés followed Michael Schwartz to a posh new hotel in Brickell, and now he’s following him out.

Andrés’ seafood-focused restaurant at the SLS Brickell hotel, Bazaar Mar, a playground for whimsical dishes and molecular gastronomy, closed March 30, his representatives confirmed Wednesday. It comes a month after Schwartz had his name scrubbed from his American-Italian restaurant at the SLS, Fi’lia.

“Believe me when I tell you that was not my idea. Restaurant was performing great, better every day. But unfortunately, I didn’t (have) ownership of the space,” Andrés tweeted.

The Related Group sold the SLS in January for $43 million, according to The Real Deal. Schwartz said in February that hastened his split with SBE, the group that ran the Brickell restaurant.

Andrés’ representative say the SLS’s new ownership made the decision.

“We’re disappointed that the SLS Brickell decided to change concepts under the hotel’s new ownership after two very successful years of Bazaar Mar, but we’ll continue to welcome South Floridians to Bazaar South Beach and are excited to announce additional Bazaar locations in the coming months,” a statement from his ThinkFoodGroup representatives to the Miami Herald read.

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Bazaar Mar took what Andrés does best — re-imagining popular Spanish-inspired dishes, with a curious twist — and applied it to seafood. Bazaar Mar earned a favorable review from the Miami Herald.

“Food — most of it plucked from oceans around the world — is emulsified, squeezed, squirted, cured, chilled and mixed with chemical compounds until it resembles something swiped from another planet. Flavor is turned into powder, gels and foam, called ‘air’ here. Even the margaritas come topped with ethereal puffs of salt and tequila,” a Miami Herald reviewer wrote in Februrary of 2017, just weeks after it opened.

The closing will not affect Andrés’ other South Florida restaurant, Bazaar, in the SLS South Beach hotel, his representatives said.

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