Foodie Friday – Local Edition

New Year, More Food.

That’s what we’re all about. 2017 is here and “season” in Miami is in full swing, which means lots of new restaurant openings, special offers, and the beginning of an onslaught of foodie events to last all winter long. As is custom, on this first Friday of January and the first Friday of the new year, we’ve compiled a round-up of some of the happenings that will be going on around town this month. Enjoy!

New Restaurant Openings & Menu Additions
The highly anticipated ‘O Munaciello is slated to open its doors on January 23rd in the heart of MiMo. Recreating and interpreting traditional Neapolitan dishes, ‘O Munaciello is a full-menu restaurant and pizzeria that is considered one of the most celebrated restaurants in Florence, Italy. ‘O Munaciello uses local produce and fine imported goods to create dishes found nowhere else in the South Florida region. Its pizzas are even baked in a made-to-measure handmade brick oven, imported from Naples, Italy. From the ambiance, service and wine list, to the menu and décor, the restaurant invites both local residents and seasonal visitors of Miami alike to experience the unique cultural experience and outstanding cuisine at this approachable everyday neighborhood eatery.

Locals and tourists alike can now experience the flavors of the Western Cape region of South Africa at Big Easy Winebar & Grill by Ernie Els. The restaurant is a project in partnership with the nationally renowned golf icon turned winemaker affectionately nicknamed “The Big Easy” for his manner, stature and gentle disposition. The opening marks the concept’s introduction to the Western hemisphere, offering patrons a taste of authentic South African cuisine which features prime cuts of meat and seafood fresh from the South Atlantic and Indian oceans. To ensure authenticity in the kitchen, Grove Bay called on the talents of Executive Chef Maryna Frederiksen, a native South African with more than two decades of experience in the culinary industry, including roles at multiple AAA Five Diamond and James Beard Award-winning dining destinations.

American Harvest is a new fast casual destination for Brickell residents and City Centre visitors looking for made-from-scratch fare perfect for lunchtime sustenance, a quick and nutritious dinner or a break from shopping. American Harvest offers South Florida a taste of sustainable, simple clean eating in keeping with a demand for transparency and a whole food approach. The new concept will focus on serving affordable food with a clear pathway from its origin to the plate. Offering diners modern interpretations of timeless, multi-ethnic comfort cooking, American Harvest sources fresh and regional ingredients from purveyors who share their passion for producing and utilizing the highest quality ingredients. Dishes will contain fresh produce delivered daily along with responsibly sourced protein, resulting in delectable modern day clean dishes.

Gin + Collins, a new cocktail bar at the AC Hotel Miami Beach, is inspired by the flavors of Spain, the country where the AC Hotel group was founded, with a cocktail list that spotlights variations on the gin and tonic, the signature drink of Spain. The “gin tonic,” as it’s called there, is a national pastime with bars devoted to the classic tipple found in every major city. Gin + Collins honors this tradition with a menu introducing guests to six different combinations of gin, tonic and garnishes for unique spins on the drink. Other craft cocktails and a menu of Mexican and Caribbean favorites are also available.

The Anderson is launching a nightly, 5-8PM happy hour on January 16th to match its locals vibe. At the forefront of the happy hour menu are classic craft cocktails your way for $7. Guests may choose from Margaritas with salt or no salt, rocks or up; Mojitos made right, standard or fruity; and Martinis shaken or stirred, made with vodka or gin, Dirty-Dry-In & Out- or Classic. In addition to the cocktails, happy hour specials include rotating wheat and rotating IPA beers for $4, well spirits for $6, and select wines and bubbles by the glass for $5.

Special Menus & Offerings
This Chinese New Year, Hakkasan restaurants around the world will celebrate the Year of the Rooster with a limited edition menu, exclusive cocktails and desserts. All 11 Hakkasan restaurants will continue to honor the Chinese wishing tree tradition where, during this auspicious time, guests will be able to share their hopes for the coming year by writing wishes on beautiful red and gold ribbons, and are invited to hang them on the iconic Hakkasan lattice cages. Additionally, a limited edition menu will be available to guests from January 13th until February 11th. Priced at $128 per person, the Chinese New Year menu will feature the Fortune Tale with Crispy Chicken, the famous Hakka Steamed Dim Sum Platter, The Golden Feather dessert, and more.  

Who doesn’t love rosé? Add $2 oysters and you have Market at EDITION’s newest happy hour daily from 4 to 7 p.m. Sip on $10 Whispering Angel Rosé and enjoy Florida’s breezy, sunny winter. The newest special at Market is just what the doctor prescribed for the new year.

For the month of January, Dragonfly Izakaya and Fish Market in Doral is offering a BOGO brunch cocktail every Sunday from 11:30AM to 3:30PM. All you have to do is present the below flyer (click, save and print) to claim one free brunch cocktail when you purchase another one at regular price. Cheers!

Foodie Events & Happenings
Our favorite restaurant pop-up, The Avenue, is back for a really cool event this Saturday at the Midtown Garden Center. They recently incorporated three small food pods into the garden and the team behind The Avenue is taking over one of them to sell fish n chips, scotch eggs and other treats all day on Saturday. Added bonus: It is  BYOB since the space does not have a liquor license. It’s a British win-win for all.

Fresh from their trip to the celebrated James Beard House in New York City, new-style Japanese restaurant Kuro, located at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood will host “James Beard Culinary Mix,” a Friends of James Beard Benefit dinner to be held on Thursday, January 19th at 7:30PM. This exciting event will benefit the James Beard Foundation’s new National Scholars program as well as other initiatives of the Foundation. The evening will be emceed by guest of honor, multiple James Beard Award winner, famed television personality, cookbook author and host of the Food Network’s Chopped, Ted Allen. A five-course dinner will be prepared by multiple James Beard Award winner Marcus Samuelsson, chef/owner of Red Rooster Harlem and Streetbird Rotisserie, and Kuro executive chef Alex Q. Becker. A pre-dinner VIP ticket will grant access to a VIP cocktail reception at the hotel’s chic L Bar, where 30 attendees will have the opportunity to take part in a meet and greet with Allen and Samuelsson. Following the exclusive dinner, a Q&A with the chefs, moderated by Allen, will conclude the experience. Tickets are priced at $175 and $250 per person and can be purchased via www.Ticketmaster.com.

More Takes
The new EazyO app is Miami’s first beach chair food delivery service that offers customers the opportunity to order lunch, beverages, and cocktails conveniently from their cellphones for delivery directly to their beach/pool chair or towel. Sun bathers will no longer have to flag down a server, wait for a check or stand in a queue at a kiosk. For launch, EazyO will be available at Boucher Brothers locations’ public beach concessions as well as marquee hotels including Fontainebleau Miami Beach and the Boca Raton Resort and Club, a Waldorf Astoria property. App users can download EazyO for free and enter their payment information upon registration. The app uses geolocation to identify the respective resort, then provides the menu, photos, prices, descriptions and average wait times. EazyO then pinpoints the guest location for delivery. The app also offers a shopping experience for beach supplies such as sunscreen and hats all available for purchase via mobile payments.

On Tuesday, January 10th, all Whole Foods Market Miami locations will donate five percent of the day’s net sales to Wellness in the Schools (WITS) – a national nonprofit that inspires healthy eating and fitness for kids in public schools – as part of Whole Foods Market’s Five Percent Days program. Newly launched in South Florida, WITS is partnering with Whole Foods Market Miami locations to host a Cooking Lab with WITS Co-founder Nancy Easton and South Florida Chef Ambassador Michael Schwartz at the Coral Gables store at 4PM. Through their collaboration with Whole Foods Market, WITS will work with local schools to provide healthy, made-from-scratch meals, active recess periods, and fitness and nutrition education. During Whole Foods Market’s Five Percent Days, stores donate five percent of the day’s net sales to local educational or nonprofit organizations. In addition, all of Schwartz’s restaurants in The Genuine Hospitality Group will also donate five percent of net sales that day to WITS.

In non-food news, the 4th Annual Miami International Science Fiction Film Festival (MiSciFi) is coming back from January 13-15. A forum for inventive and imaginative filmmakers to showcase their extraordinary work, Miami’s only international fantasy film festival promises to enrich the community with diverse, award-winning films, and a fun, immersive experience. Founded in 2013 by passionate supporters of science and film, Troy P. Bernier, Eric Sweyn, and Edward Luis Figueroa, MiSciFi has become a leader in curating independent films from 20+ countries from across the globe.

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Cheers to local foodie adventures this month!

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