At La Mar inside the Mandarin Oriental on Brickell Key, dinner is more than just a meal. Anyone familiar with Chef Diego Oka’s culinary work knows that his Peruvian cooking is not just bursting with flavor but also bustling with beauty. His latest seasonal menu is no exception: Expect a parade of lively colors and unique tastes to tantalize your senses.
If you were to ask us where to go for brunch on a Sunday, La Mar by Gastón Acurio at the Mandarin Oriental would be one of our first recommendations. The Brickell Key restaurant’s brunch, which we tried last year, was — and continues to be — one of the best weekend deals in town. An extensive buffet spread and unlimited pisco sours? Yes, please.
But it wasn’t until a few weeks ago that we finally stopped in for dinner. Chef Diego Oka has been traveling the globe lately, and he’s come back and put all that worldly inspiration onto the plate. We were fortunate enough to take part in a 12-course affair that highlighted classic La Mar dishes as well as some new additions (shout out to Chef Oka for the hand-written menu).
Twelve courses is a lot, so we’ll keep this short and sweet. Cue the food porn.
Last week, Azul at Mandarin Oriental made Thursdays nights a lot more interesting. February 4 marked the launch of the five-star restaurant’s Izakaya Nights, a new weekly Thursday night dinner series celebrating Chef Benjamin Murray’s Japanese roots. Guests can opt for a $55 prix-fix menu of shareable plates reminiscent of those found in traditional Izakaya restaurants in Japan.
After trying out the first week’s menu for ourselves, we suggest you do just that.