There was only one restaurant in Miami we knew for sure we had to visit. Chef Michael Schwartz of Michael’s Genuine Food is a pioneer of Miami dining. We’d actually seen him on a live taping of the Martha Stewart Show and gotten a copy of his cookbook. Locals here will all tell you Michael’s Genuine is one of the few known for consistently amazing food. Of course all the NY big chef chains are here which is totally annoying so our goal was to do our best to experience local chefs. Naturally, they seem to have empires just like the NY guys so we picked one from each but it got tough not to repeat.
Michael’s Genuine Food is located in the up-and-coming Miami Design District. The area is very much like LA but has a combination of interior design stores, galleries, fashion and dining. At night it is all closed, but it looks like a nice high end shopping destination. Everything is new and white. All low rise single units. Michael’s is in a tiny mall area. Not what I expected, but they created a lovely outdoor dining space with plants and some ambiance. We chose to eat outside when we went inside to check in.
On that note, Jenny the hostess was quite engaging. She asked where we were from. When we said New York, she pointed to the girl next to her and said she’s from New York. Without another thought we were seated. We placed our array of small plate orders and Steve said to me…we know that girl. She worked at Trinity Place in the Financial District. So he called over the waiter and asked if she’d stop by. Sure enough, her name was Shannon and she did, in fact work at a bar close to our apartment. She had just moved to Miami and scored the hot job of Manager at Michael’s Genuine Food! Small damn world on our first night out in Miami!!!
Ok, on with the FOOD! Our first dish was the stracciatella. This is a fave of ours. For those familiar with the popular Burrata, this is the lovely gooey inside stuff! Forget about the mozz on the outside and just get da good stuff! Served with beefy heirloom tomatoes, this was one of the best preparations we’ve had.
stracciatella heirloom tomato, paradise farms basil tops, extra virgin olive oil, fleur de sel 20
The next dish was equally as amazing! Another cheesy, eggy yummy fattening treat! But served hot instead of cold.
wood roasted double yolk farm egg cave aged gruyere, roasted tomato, chives, sourdough crostini 8
Next up, pork belly. Yes, I know, this is a highly caloric meal. Just imagine if we ordered entrees instead of small plates?! But who doesn’t love pork belly? And I love anything that involves kimchi, so we had to order. Amazing again!
crispy sweet & spicy pork belly kimchi, crushed peanuts, paradise farm pea shoots 15
chili chicken wings creamy cucumbers 8
And to finish off the meal, we had the doughnuts, which were recommended by our man Jake, an Assistant Director at the Viceroy. He manages the restaurants and we found ourselves seeing him daily and picking up advice on dining. No pic here as by this time we were chatting with Shannon. We had a couple of after dinner drinks on her. Cheers Shannon, thanks and good luck! Great restaurant!
130 NE 40th Street – Miami – Design District