Sounds like a legal firm right? This past week I ate some Great (and some New) food at Michael Schwartz’s two Miami restaurants: MGFD and Harry’s Pizzeria plus a great new dish at the great Nemesis Urban Bistro.
On Sunday I ate at Schwartz’s flagship restaurant, Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink . The duck confit was crispy, meaty and tender and came with a sweet jelly, lemony frisee and spicy pumpkin seeds that went really well together. The wood oven roasted swordfish and side of pesto cauliflower where also delicious. But the new thing I had never tried there, or cooked that way, was the short rib. It is slow roasted for hours and then grilled for a delicate char, which made for one of the most tender yet smokey pieces of beef I have ever tasted. It was very pleasant to enjoy this cut this way, since usually they are braised and the sauces can be over-powering. Here the short rib spoke for itself. Amazing.
On Wednesday I was lucky enough to attend the next installment of the Chef Pop-Ups Schwartz has been hosting at this second restaurant, Harry’s Pizzeria. This time the invited restaurant was Empire State South and its James Beard Award Winning Chef, Hugh Acheson. The menu included some great starters that were passed around including fried bologna on hawaiian roll, pimiento cheese sandwiches, beef tartare on benne cracker and roast fig / ricotta pizza with ESS 16 month ham. All really good. Upon sitting the menu started with a fabulous wood roasted rock shrimp, lardo mayo, pickled peppers, fermented carrot and peanuts salad, followed by a red snapper crudo with red hot creme fraiche. The main course was a succulent cornish hen accompanied by sweet & sour eggplants and creamed corned Kimchi. For me, the new thing was the lamb heart, which was wood roasted and came on a bed of “oatotto” (a very creamy risotto made with oats), roasted okra and chow chow. I am not an expert in Offal, nor do I have much experience eating it, so I jump to it whenever I get the chance. The heart slices definitely tasted like lamb, and were juicy tender. I tried many pieces on their own to gauge their individual flavor, and thought they could use a bit more seasoning (maybe heart shouldn’t be or can’t be seasoned?). But overall, glad to have tried a new food and together with the oatotto, the dish worked wonders. Kudos to Y’all Taste This for a much better pic than the one I took!
Finally I paid a visit to what is to my mind one of the best places in Miami for breadth of flavor, given the amazing creativity and skill of Chef Micah Edelstein: Nemesis Urban Bistro. As with most visits, I took some friends, this is my favorite place to take new people to, you always know they will be impressed and will eat something new, original, something they had never tasted before. Everything we had was delicious as always (Tuscan Sushi!!), but the new thing I had that blew me away was the new “Octopussy” dish inspired by Micah’s recent holiday in Spain. The dish is made up of three perfectly cooked octopus tentacles and the most delicious “tortilla española” squares you can imagine. Some drops of aioli a placed strategically throughout the dish and a peppery tomato based salsa rounds it up magnificently. Go tonight and order this!.
That’s it for this week, see you next week (if I get to eat anything new or anything Great)