Every few months, the Pinch Kitchen team hosts a collaboration dinner with some of South Florida’s culinary giants. On January 30, the fifth installment of the Craft Collab series featured Chef Niven Patel of Ghee Indian Kitchen, which is set to open in Downtown Dadeland later this year.
The family-style affair served as a sneak peek of Chef Patel’s new eatery and put three of Miami’s top chefs under one roof. Together with Chef Patel, Pinch’s John Gallo and Rene Reyes cooked up a multi-course masterpiece of a menu that left us even more excited for Ghee Indian Kitchen and the future of this dinner series.
Before sitting down, guests enjoyed sake cocktails and an array of passed bites to whet the palate. Delicious Grilled Naan, Confit Goat Dumplings and Baked Strawberries all set our expectations sky-high for the meal to come. The goat dumplings, in particular, were a stand-out dish due to the mix of sheep feta cheese and puffed rice that popped with flavor the second it hit your taste buds.
Four plates made up the first course of the evening. This was the first time we ever encountered Backyard Pakora and Samosa Chaat, and it definitely won’t be the last time. The former — a fried bundle of joy — had us drooling, while the chaat (roasted corn, channa masala, housemade yogurt) floored us with spice and everything nice. Wianno Oysters (green papaya, turmeric, heirloom tomato) and Jaggery Bacon Pani Puri (Yukon patoto, chives, roasted pepper) closed out this first round of plates on a high note.
We could have left happy and satisfied after the incredible passed bites and first course, but the feast continued with five 2nd-course items. Our two favorites — Ghee Poached Lobster and Short Rib Dosa — could not have been any tastier, and the Meyer Lemon Basmati, Kashmiri Chili Puri and Rancho Patel Pigeon Peas kept our palates in a state of pure ecstasy throughout the rest of the dinner.
Needless to say, there was a lot of food that night. Thankfully, dessert was on the lighter side: Tart Yogurt. Despite the unassuming name, the dessert was a beast in flavor and presentation. It was one of those desserts you don’t want to eat since it’s so beautiful. But we did — and it tasted as good as it looked. Paired with chai tea, it was just what we needed to come down after such a sensory experience.
Five dinners in, and Craft Collab is just getting started. If you haven’t already checked out the dinner series, keep an eye out for the next installment. You won’t want to miss it.
Pinch Kitchen is located at 8601 Biscayne Blvd. in El Portal. For hours of operation and other information, visit their official website or call 305-631-2018.