BEST RESTAURANT IN SOUTH BEACH
At Wish in South Beach, the bold Mediterr-Asian cuisine of Andrea Curto was awesome. At both the Heights in Coral Gables and later at the Gaucho Room in the Loews Hotel, Frank Randazzo's Southwest-influenced creations were equally dazzling. Put these two inventive chefs together and what do you get? Personally, marriage. Professionally, Talula, which immediately began attracting rave reviews locally and nationally. And why not, with an intriguing merger menu of what they call "Creative American Cuisine"? Some dishes are influenced by their former individual venues, like Curto's flavorful grilled quail crusted with a cascabel chili rub (a signature item at Wish). But most items are new, some sounding similar to dishes available elsewhere but tasting delightfully different, such as a tartare of diced ahi tuna flavored not with the usual sesame but with chili oil, and playfully topped with snap-crackle-popping fresh trout caviar. For dessert, an amusingly marshmallow-topped layered sweet potato/custard crème brûlée is as festive as South Beach itself.
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