By Mitchell Nover
#MiamiSpiceMonday in October, you ask? Well, thanks to Hurricane Irma, the GMCVB has decided to extend the restaurant program through October 31st as part of the #MiamiNow campaign with the goal of celebrating the best of Miami’s tourism industry and offer an unprecedented value for visitors and locals alike. And here at MMTM headquarters, we’re celebrating even more because that means we still have time to share one of our favorite Miami Spice experiences year in and year out, courtesy of Chef Adrianne’s Vineyard Restaurant and Wine Bar (11510 SW 147th Ave, Miami).
Menu highlights: Chef Adrianne Calvo’s award-winning restaurant has somehow managed to remain a hidden gem and a local favorite for years now. It’s like a little piece of Napa Valley re-situated itself in the suburbs of Miami, serving up contemporary American, California-inspired cuisine day in and day out. With a total capacity of only 60 guests, the restaurant is consistently packed, especially during Spice season. So make your reservations today, if you can. Otherwise, enjoy vicariously through the dish descriptions below and start planning ahead for next year.
Chef Adrianne’s Miami Spice menu is only available for lunch, Tuesday through Saturday. Featuring a selection of powerhouse bites that date back to some of the first flavors introduced since the restaurant opened in 2007, diners can enjoy appetizer selections that include Organic Soup of the Day (a beautiful Maryland Crab Chowder during my visit), Free Range Chicken Lollipops with sweet chili and cucumber ranch, and Blue Fin Tuna with sweet bell pepper chutney and lemon zest aioli.
The entree selections include a perennial favorite,
Standout dish: The entirety of Chef Adrianne’s menu is delightful. It’s equally simple, yet complex, modern, yet comforting. It’s a meal that satisfies immensely, especially when you get to dessert. The Bread Pudding is the only dessert option on the Spice menu, but boy is it a doozy. I’ve now visited Chef Adrianne’s for her Miami Spice experience three years in a row and can hardly contain myself during the first two courses, waiting with bated breath for the sweet treat that awaits. In years’ past I’ve called it my favorite dessert of the year, and this year’s iteration – a anilla ice cream and salted caramel – is no different. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again… If I could eat three courses of this dessert, I would. Or maybe a full tray?
Are we boozing? We certainly are! Not included on the Spice menu, but definitely worth the order, is Chef Adrianne’s Signature Sangria, available in either White Wine Passion Fruit or Red Wine Pomegranate. At $15 a glass, it’s not cheap – hell, the entire three course lunch only costs $23. But, sweet and boozy, this is a great afternoon drink that will help you get your buzz on and relax. And those wine goblets are basically a double serving anyway. Cheers!
Check this place out if you like: good eats in Kendall. Not quite as far west as Chef Adrianne’s, you can enjoy more quality, semi-off-the-grid bites at restaurants like Barley, The Brick, and Devon Seafood + Steak.
Mitch’s take: I’ve previously noted that a Miami Spice visit to Chef Adrianne’s can be a little bit of an uphill battle. If you don’t live or work in the area, basically your only possibility for a visit is on a Saturday afternoon and reservations are hard to come by. But it’s definitely worth a try. Chef Adrianne’s is not only one of Miami’s best restaurants, but it also serves up a consistently amazing Miami Spice lunch experience. It’s honestly very, very good. So do yourself a favor and get a reservation. Or at least try. Or find yourself a foodie friend with a standing table. Here’s looking at you, Stacy Moya – thanks for the invite!