When we last wrote about Palme d’Or, we were lavishing its Miami Spice menu with praise. After all, $39 for a meal at this five-diamond restaurant is an absolute steal. You know what else is a steal? The restaurant’s other tasting menus, which start at $115 for six magnificent courses.
We love Coral Gables. It’s a balanced city: Whatever your interests — food, history, culture, etc. — there’s something for everyone to enjoy in the neighborhood. That’s why it’s the perfect place for a staycation.
If you were to ask a local where to stay in The City Beautiful, odds are that the Biltmore Hotel would be at the top of the list. No building is more iconic — the structure’s history dates back to the 1920s. And while it is a luxury hotel, we found out firsthand that a big budget isn’t required to enjoy its accommodations.
Change is scary for most people, but not for The Local Craft Food + Drink’s Phil Bryant. At the Coral Gables gastropub, the chef actively embraces it in his Southern cuisine. What’s on the menu one day will be most likely be gone the other, making each visit to the neighborhood spot a unique one. Case in point: All the items we had during our visit for this story are no longer available.
It doesn’t matter, though, because one thing has remained the same at The Local under Chef Bryant’s care: the quality of the experience.
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.
Coral Gables is undergoing a transformation. Since last year, the Gables Streetscape construction project has been turning two of the city’s main arteries — Miracle Mile and Giralda Avenue — into more pedestrian-friendly destinations. Local restaurants would ultimately benefit from expanded outdoor dining space and other improvements meant to attract customers.
Unfortunately, the process has been anything but smooth for Giralda Avenue. Because of numerous delays, the usually busy strip was an active construction site (and an eyesore) for months after its scheduled completion date; the place was a ghost town. As a result, several businesses shuttered and others hung on — and continue to hang on — by a thread. Thankfully, construction is just about complete and a grand opening celebration is planned for mid-September.
We’re celebrating for another reason, though: It’s no longer a mission to get to The Local Craft Food & Drink for their awesome brunch.