When it comes to food, we usually opt for casual cuisine over fine dining. But when we do have the hankering for fancy fare, we go all out. Miami Spice makes it easy to do so: Restaurants that would typically be out of our price range are suddenly affordable. One of those restaurants is Palme d’Or at the Biltmore.
The AAA Five Diamond restaurant is fine dining at its finest, so the $39 Spice offerings are a phenomenal value. And when you factor in the impeccable service and beautiful, vibrant dishes, Palme d’Or is a Miami Spice must.
Your meal at this Coral Gables establishment starts with Parker House brioche to enjoy as you digest the Miami Spice selections. Under each of the three courses, you’ll find four different dishes to choose from. The menu has rotated throughout the season, but for the most part, the plates have remained constant. Two of those constants are the hamachi carpaccio (L’Hamachi) and grilled Spanish octopus (Le Poulpe).
That photo you see at the top of this post? That’s the hamachi, and it’s stunning. Feel free to judge this dish by its appearance: It’s just as memorable once you take a bite. And if you like octopus, you can’t go with Palme d’Or’s rendition with comes with fresh garbanzo salad, heirloom tomatoes and a few other goodies to make it pop.
For entrees, we strongly suggest the Alaskan black cod (Le Cabillaud D’ Alaska) with snow peas, grapefruit and coconut milk. The delicate fish mixed in the coconut milk is packed with flavor. It may appear simple, but there’s a complexity to the plate that we absolutely loved. The seared quail (La Caille Rôtie), if it’s available, is another solid choice where all the elements just work together so well.
Let’s talk dessert. Odds are that during your meal, you’ll see servers carrying what looks like a punk rock tree. This pink-leafed creation is the La Fôret Noire, a chocolate sponge dessert that’s just as fun to eat as it is to photograph. Fair warning: It is a lot of (delicious) chocolate. Diners not in the mood for chocolate should check out the banana passion fruit eclair (L’Éclair) that’s a little less rich but no less incredible.
In addition to the three courses, there are a lot of little touches throughout the meal that make you feel special. An amuse-bouche, pre-dessert palate cleanser and petit four cart all showed up to make our experience truly stand out. It’s these tiny details — plus the great food, of course — that made us fall in love with Palme d’Or and that make it worthy of your Miami Spice shortlist.