By Melanie Galarce
The Arketekt By Aficionados (1200 Brickell Bay Dr, Suite 107, Miami) is a new restaurant in the middle of the hustle and bustle of brickell that feels like a vintage escape. The restaurant, which was was opened by the group behind the local favorite Aficionados Brickell Wine & Spirits, is self-described as “one who creates.” A simple concept that can be applied to all aspects of the restaurant, including its food and drink menu.
Menu highlights: The carefully curated menu offers a wide variety of small plates as well as larger options that can be shared. Among the smaller options, Mitch and I tried the Arketekt version of croquetas. This Croqueta rendition brought yuca, goat cheese, and huancaina sauce. Although it was a diversion from the ham croquetas I’m inclined to order at my local bakery every morning, it also didn’t feel too heavy for dinner which was an added plus.
You can also expect healthy options to go along with the more indulgent menu items like the Charred Cauliflower with lemon tzatziki and garlic chips. A healthy, tasty side that will pair up great with any entree.
I was really into the fact that the menu was small, but had enough variety to make it feel like there was an option for everyone, including a seafood dish. As so, Mitch and I tried the Pan Seared Salmon with vidalia onions, orange escabeche, and yuca cake. The fish was fresh and had a great citrus hint that brought everything together.
Standout dish: If you’re looking for the stellar dish at Arketekt order the Braised Short Ribs. The dish brings aji panca adobo and corn risotto. The latter will make you weak in the knees. I could probably have a serving of this corn risotto daily and just blame it on my 6 months of pregnancy. It’s everything risotto was meant to be, creamy and buttery, only this version takes it up a notch with traces of fresh corn.
Another favorite of the night? Nutella Donuts. These are baked to order so you’ll have to hang tight for a few minutes while they’re deep fried and lathered in sugar. Trust me when I say the wait will be worth it. You’ll get these hot and steamy and have a generous portion of Nutella for dipping. You’re welcome.
Are we boozing? Yes, we are. In fact, we might just make it to Arketekt for a drink or two since this place resembles a speakeasy and offers a myriad of craft cocktails and a very inviting bar.
Mitch had the Lima Mule with Pisco 100, strawberry, mint, and ginger beer. A specialty cocktail at the bar that gave us major design envy.
The Strawberry Mojito Mocktail is every pregnant woman’s dream. With a very generous portion of sugar, this fruit-infused concoction will make you forget that alcohol is nonexistent for a few months.
Check this place out if you like: Local favorite Aficionado’s Wine & Spirits in Brickell. You’ll probably want to stop by since it’s the team’s first effort at a restaurant concept. There are very few spots in Brickell that resemble this understated but totally cool concept, since most restaurants tend to be over-the-top eateries, but if you like places like Hannya (now Akashi Brickell) where the vibe is laid back and the food is really good, you’ll want to give the Arketekt a try.
Mel’s take: I really dug this place’s old school feel with new school menu. Brickell seems inundated with restaurant these days so it’s refreshing to see a small spot with serious authenticity in decor and a strong menu that does a good job at luring you in. They also have Sunday brunch with unlimited mimosas for the gals, and that’s a total win, right? I highly recommend you take some time to hide from the hustle and bustle (and endless construction) of Brickell to have a good meal and even better cocktail at the Arketekt.
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