BEST SPANISH RESTAURANT (NUEVO) Miami 2004 - Mosaico
Located in the upstairs area of the old Firehouse Four restaurant/bar, and offering indoor and outdoor dining (choose outdoors if possible), this classy and hip addition to the Brickell dining scene owes its acclaim to Barcelona chef Jordi Vallès. Before coming to America, Vallès worked under Spain's Ferran Adrià, the madly creative genius whose culinary inventions have made him a worldwide star. Adrià also trained the supremely talented Angel Palacios, who hired Vallès to work for him at the ill-fated La Broche, the most daring restaurant Miami has ever seen. (Palacios's own Adrià-inspired inventions somehow couldn't find an audience, and the restaurant closed after less than a year.) But at his new home, Vallès's goal is not to shock so much as to surprise. Yes, he employs some of the trademark touches of Adrià's "deconstructionist" cuisine (uniquely flavored foams and ice creams), but they are in the service of the more familiar, such as lobster tails with a dollop of avocado sorbet resting on a "consommé" of golden tomato.