When we think of Argentine cuisine, the first thing that comes to mind is amazing meat. And that’s the first thing that should come to mind at Delano South Beach’s latest restaurant, Leynia. The Argentinean grill serves up an incredible array of carnes that you’ll be thinking about long after you take your last bite.
But this isn’t your traditional Argentine fare: The restaurant also infuses Asian influences throughout the menu. The result? One of our favorite meals of 2017.
We wouldn’t normally think of combining Argentinean and Asian cuisine, but that’s why we’re not restaurateurs. Chef Jason Icardi (ex-Katsuya) has whipped up an extensive menu of small plates and large dishes to satisfy just about any carnivore. Before we get into the meat and potatoes of our experience (literally), let’s talk about the seafood:
The Ceviche of the Day is our Ceviche of the Year. The tuna and hamachi — super fresh and clean — left us looking like the gif above … That’s not an exaggeration. The protein changes regularly, but we doubt the quality would be any different. The Tuna Pizza with its crisp tortilla also wowed us; we’re iffy about truffle (it can be overpowering) but the truffle essence of the dish was just right. There’s a nice cooling effect on your tongue from the anchovy aioli, too. Your senses are in for a treat.
Ordering Empanadas at an Argentinean restaurant is a no brainer, especially at Leynia. Whether you get a carne empanada (Cantimpalo sausage) or a chocho empanada (corn), you can expect a scrumptious filling and exterior. The former’s pickled apple garnish adds a whole new layer of flavor while the latter’s mix of sweet and spicy is a delight for your taste buds.
Lovers of cheese (aka everyone) will find themselves loving the Proveloneta, a melty and savory provolone cheese dish. It’s literally grilled cheese, and it’s literally awesome. Not in the mood for something so decadent? Load up on a delicious mountain of Brussels sprouts … with crispy bacon. Sorry, diet.
Writing a description about the meat dishes we ate wouldn’t do them justice. Both the Chorizo and Churrasco (served on a mini portable grill with sweet potatoes) are two of the best items we’ve eaten so far this year. We didn’t want either one to end; they’re simple but tremendous — particularly the churrasco. Seriously, add some chimichurri to the steak and it’s like you’re boarding a rocket ship straight to heaven. In conclusion, ORDER THEM BOTH.
Personally, we’d eat as much meat as humanly possible and skip dessert; it’s just that good. Those of you who do need to end your meal on a sweet note have several options to choose from. On the more screw-your-diet side, there’s the black and gold Beignets that are beyond gorgeous. Diners trying to be good can opt for the refreshing Lemon Champagne Sorbet: refreshing yet boozy (a perfect combo).
If you can’t tell, we really really really really really like Leynia. Dining experiences like these are few and far between, and Leynia raises the bar for South Beach dining. Why are you still reading this? Go make your reservation.
Leynia is located at 1685 Collins Ave inside the Delano Hotel on Miami Beach. For hours of operation and other information, visit their official website or call 305-674-5752.