Quality Meats has been on our to-do list for a while. We had been there for drinks and dessert but never actually for a full meal. So when Miami Spice came around, we knew it was the perfect time to go. After a generous chef’s tasting of their Spice offerings, we can safely say Quality Meats lives up to its name (and then some).
It’s said that variety is the spice of life, and there’s no lack of options on this menu. Each of the three courses provides guests with a wealth of items to choose from. Take the appetizer section, for instance. You’ll find six to choose from — and all of them sound delicious.
We can vouch for the dry-age meatballs, house-slab bacon with jalapeno jelly and peanut butter and the seared sea scallops. We enjoyed all three but the two that really stood out were the scallops and bacon. Don’t expect a plate of tiny scallops here. Chef Patrick Rebholz serves up giant diver scallops to make sure you get your money’s worth. So soft and buttery, our scallops had a perfect sear and the black garlic schmear brought everything full circle.
The bacon deserves its own paragraph. At first, you might think, “What the hell?” It never crossed our minds to combine bacon and peanut butter. We bravely dug into this concoction and were surprised at how all the different elements worked together. The first bite threw us off a little, but let it linger in your mouth. It gets better with each bite, so much so that you’ll want to throw peanut butter and jalapeno jelly on all your bacon going forward.
For the entrees, we ordered one steak dish (of course) and one fish dish: the grilled bavette and everything-crusted branzino. The former is an uncommon cut of meat that’s similar to flank steak — except that it’s a bit thicker and a lot tastier. Ours had a good char and the cured orange salad added brightness to the dish and color to the plate.
Have you ever had an everything bagel? The everything-crusted branzino is a similar concept. The crispy, crunchy exterior gives way to some incredibly flaky fish. The best part: The cream cheese sauce, which was divine. We haven’t had anything quite like this entree. Feeling adventurous? We suggest you try this dish to have your mind blown.
As for sides, we had the Yorkshire creamed spinach and the corn creme brulee. The spinach was great, but the corn creme brulee blew it out of the water. Hell, it blew everything out of the water. Our exact reaction after just one bite: “Wooooooooooooooooow.” We can see why it’s a signature plate here — the balance of salty and sweet is flawless.
Like we mentioned before, we previously visited Quality Meats for dessert. The last time we were here, we had the burnt marshmallow ice cream — basically s’mores in ice cream form. We had it again, and it was just as memorable. First of all: It’s pretty to look at. Second of all, IT’S S’MORES IN ICE CREAM FORM. You can’t really go wrong with that.
What really surprised us was the other ice cream, though: coffee and donuts. We’re not huge fans of coffee ice cream, but the coffee taste here isn’t overpowering — it’s just right since chocolate donuts are also thrown in the mix. Speaking of chocolate donuts, there’s a cute tiny one on top; it’s a nice touch.
We can’t recommend Quality Meats enough — even outside of Miami Spice. Since we had a chef’s tasting, we were also brought out some items from the regular menu like the housemade charcuterie, which was two giant tiers of goodies like duck bacon, foie gras torchon and even popcorn (just look at the photo!).
The bar program is also worth noting for its creative cocktails. The Loose Cannon, for example, is tequila, house elixir and celery juice over jalapeno ice; as the ice melts, the drink becomes spicier. If you like your drinks with a kick, let it sit for a bit.
Our verdict: This was one of the best meals we’ve ever had — period. Despite us only being a few weeks into Miami Spice, we can say with the utmost confidence that this is among the top menus out there. If you have only one opportunity to take advantage of the foodie holiday, make your reservation at Quality Meats — you will not regret it. You can take that to the bank.