Kendall lost a local favorite restaurant. But the owner has another plan in the works

Barley chef Jorgie Ramos
Barley chef Jorgie Ramos Miami Herald staff

A family-run restaurant that made a labyrinthine shopping center across from the Dadeland Mall a dining destination has closed.

Barely: An American Brasserie served its last meal Aug. 18 in the Downtown Dadeland mall, after seven years in business. Its owner, Jorgie Ramos, announced the closing on Instagram.

“We love our neighborhood and love all the people who have walked through our doors and allowed us to make any sort of impact in their lives,” he wrote.

When it opened in 2013, Barley was an instant hit in Kendall, where few restaurants were taking the chances Ramos did. A self-taught cook with a natural talent (and plenty of tutelage from his grandmother and father), Ramos traded on the gastropub trend. He set out rich, pork-centric fare paired with craft beers as that industry also was taking off in South Florida.

Kendall loved it. And it proved its loyalty by returning even as Barley changed names — Barley & Swine, B&S, Barley & ‘Wich, finally just Barley — and location. The restaurant finally settled at 8975 SW 72nd Place after a spat with a previous landlord.

Ramos changed the menu often with restless creativity. He cast spinoffs like a pop-up Faith & Pizza two doors down and recently opened a new bar, Abi Maria. The burger he made won an award at the 2018 South Beach Wine & Food Festival’s Burger Bash, and just as quickly he took it off the menu at Barley to try new dishes.

And he might not even be done at that location.

Ramos, reached via text, said he had a good relationship with his new landlord even as his lease has run out, and that could spark a new restaurant in the same spot. A sign at the closed restaurant promised they would return with “a bigger and better concept.”

“I’m also meeting with landlord again from Downtown Dadeland to discuss remodeling the space and opening a new concept at same location,” he wrote the Miami Herald.

Barely opened the door in Downtown Dadeland. It attracted an (ill-fated) offshoot of James Beard award-winner Michael Schwartz’s Harry’s Pizzeria and later Ghee Indian Kitchen, whose chef-owner Niven Patel was named a semifinalist for a James Beard. Patel has announced a second restaurant there, Erba, set to open in the fall.

Miami Herald food editor Carlos Frías won the 2018 James Beard award for excellence in covering the food industry. A Miami native, he’s also the author of “Take Me With You: A Secret Search for Family in a Forbidden Cuba.”