A piddly amount of finely shredded sour cabbage (think sauerkraut) rests against the pork, along with a couple of shiitake mushrooms and a single snow pea snipped in half — and as with the other binchotan-grilled dishes, nothing else nestles alongside. Turning instead to à la carte sides, we enjoyed an impeccably steamed, diverse array of fresh vegetables (baby yellow beets, Brussels sprouts, asparagus, and three or four others) — even if we had to supply our own salt and pepper. There was nothing we could do to save a dreadful dish of quinoa couscous overburdened with bulky whole almonds, raisins, and way too much mint.

The wine list comprises bottles specifically selected to complement Juvia's Japanese/French/Peruvian fare. The bulk of the bottles range from $60 to $90. The bar also pours premium sakes; sprightly, innovative cocktails (most $18); and a peerless sangria made with Sauvignon Blanc, Asian pear, St-Germain, and Canton ginger liqueur. If you want to bring along your own bottle of wine, the corkage fee is $50. That's not nice.

Juvia is, otherwise, quite friendly, with the staff doing its best to stay cool and efficient under generally trying circumstances (this place fills to the brim). Though there are hitches and delays here and there, the restaurant has operated for less than two months. And it can't be denied that Juvia is expensive, but except the corkage fee and a few deluxe items, it isn't out of line with other dining establishments on the Beach. Most starters — hot, cold, and raw — are around $15 to $19; entrées average $30, binchotan entrées $34; and desserts are $8 to $10.

Unagi with chocolate
Courtesy of Juvia
Unagi with chocolate

Location Info

Map

Juvia

1111 Lincoln Road
Miami Beach, FL 33139

Category: Restaurant > Asian

Region: South Beach

Details

Juvia

305-763-8272
juviamiami.com

Lunch Monday through Friday noon to 3:30 p.m., Saturday and Sunday noon to 6 p.m.; dinner nightly 6 p.m. to 1 a.m.

Hamachi crudo with yuzu espuma $20
Unagi with chocolate $16
Pork confit $25
Binchotan-grilled tenderloin $38
Apple tarte tatin $10

I've never met a deconstructed key lime pie I've liked, so I never considered Juvia's rendition. I might not be as dismissive the next time, though, because my selection — apple tarte tatin — had a shortbread base rock-hard enough to take an eye out; when intense pressure from a fork finally made impact, pieces shot skyward as if propelled by a sling. Besides, who uses a cookie in tarte tatin? Pastry chef Gourreau does, and it could be a great idea if he created a softer shortbread. The slowly caramelized apples on top were sumptuously tender; almond ice cream on the side was wonderfully creamy if light on the almond.

Other whimsical desserts include lychee fruit soup with tapioca and raspberry sorbet, and hazelnut ravioli with citrus consommé and pomegranate sorbet. Juvia suffers no shortage of creative ideas; it's the execution that needs improving.

From its crown perch atop the neighborhood's newest landmark, Juvia is a quintessential South Beach restaurant: pretty and pricey, stylish and trendy, and ever so up-to-date. It's also the rare SoBe spot that rewards early birds; you'll miss the buzz that vibrates during late-night hours, but a spectacular sunset view is quite the compensation. There might not be a better spot in the area for hoisting cocktails at this hour.

It's a worthwhile place to dine too, but while the kitchen crew works out some entrée inconsistencies, it's probably safer to stick with the starters.

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3 comments
Spinner
Spinner

This MNT review is right on the mark - I will return for drinks and some aps but we left unimpress with the main dishes (Scallops and Sea Bass).

P.P.
P.P.

We were two concierges going to try the "amazing" Juvia and left with such a big regret to decided to go there. Food was ok, but for the prices I was expecting way more. The croqueta that I order was great but it came with burned tuna on the side and so on... Even with a reservation I had to wait 30 minutes on the bar and while there we had to wait about 10 -15 minutes to finally get noticed. We had such a bad experience even trying to meet the managers and chefs. After we decided to go to Villa Azure (great choice)

 
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