La Fresa Francesa is fantastic. The Hialeah French restaurant (yes, you read that correctly) has become a neighborhood staple with its delectable dishes and friendly faces, and the latest venture from its owners is poised for the same success. Normandy Isle’s Silverlake Bistro, which gets its name from the owners’ time in Southern California, is fairly different from its sister eatery but shares one big similarity: quality.
Unlike the French selections you’d find at La Fresa, the items at Silverlake Bistro skew a bit more American. Small plates like an Avocado Green Goddess Salad and Mac and Cheese might not excite you by name, but don’t be deceived; Chef Benoit Rablat infuses these plates with flavors that tantalize. For example, that normal-sounding mac and cheese is actually duck fat seared gnocchi with smoked gouda cheese sauce and pork belly. Can we get a HELL YEAH?
With so many delicious options to choose from, it’s easy to skip over things like Silverlake’s vegetables — don’t. Baby Carrots and Pan-Fried Okra were two of our favorite items of the night, and we’re not exactly the biggest fans of veggies. Seriously, the former’s mix of honey, pistachios, ricotta and basil will make your taste buds break out in dance. Same goes for the tasty Napa Grilled Cheese, which gave us some good croque madame vibes.
The menu here is so versatile that you can easily make a meal solely out of small plates or go even bigger. If you follow Silverlake on Instagram, you’ve most likely seen them promoting the Silverlake Burger. It’s a monster — in a good way. Two patties, cheddar, bacon, porcini mayo, steak sauce and frites make up this massive dish; split it with another person if you want to avoid a visit to the cardiologist. We could slice through ours like butter. In fact, there was hardly any cleanup needed despite everything going on in it — a huge plus (especially on a date).
Not in the mood to hate yourself? There are other options like Steak Frites and Roasted Half Chicken, but we couldn’t eat anything else … except dessert. We finished our experience with a Cheesecake Parfait and some Pot de Creme and then immediately passed out back at home.
If you love La Fresa Francesa, then you’ll love Silverlake Bistro. The food may be different, but the quality is consistent. Plus, you have the nicest couple in town running the place: Chef Rablat and Sandy Sanchez. It’s only a matter of time before this Normandy Isle restaurant is as slammed as its Hialeah counterpart.