Miami is brimming with unique Italian restaurants. In the past few months, Via Emilia 9, a quaint Northern Italian-inspired eatery in South Beach, received a significant makeover; Michael Schwartz opened his highly anticipated Italian spot, Fi'lia, inside the SLS Brickell; and Ocio brought lobster ravioli, carbonara, and beef lasagna to Doral.
Most recently, Bàcaro, a Venetian-inspired wine and tapas bar, opened one block south of Lincoln Road in Miami Beach (1625 Michigan Ave.). Founded by Carlo Bernardini — who previously worked for the Four Seasons Hotel group in various locations across the world, including Tokyo, Singapore, Bangkok, London, Istanbul, Lisbon, and Cairo — Bàcaro brings traditional northeastern Italian to a fashionable, dimly lit South Beach space.
The eatery blends Bernardini's Venetian upbringing with his international culinary experience, creating a small but hip European eatery, which is lined with racks of wine bottles and decorated with splashes of graffiti. Stocked with more than 120 wines, including more than 20 by the glass, he designed Bàcaro to be a relaxed, booze-flowing spot with quality fare, versus a conventional sit-down restaurant.
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The menu (with item ranging from $4 to $44) concentrates on cicchetti, an Italian take on tapas-style dining paired with wines and champagnes. Highlights include fresh burrata drizzled with a light olive oil; arancini, small balls of rice stuffed with truffle aioli; and boards of cured salami and artisanal cheeses.
Besides a medley of small tasting plates, what sets Bàcaro apart is its truffle tasting menu, which features imported truffles straight from the Italian region of Alba. The dishes, available à la carte, are pricey. They range from $18 to $85 and include wine sorbet with truffle sabayon for $18, Angus beef carpaccio with black truffle for $28, and fettuccine or risotto with white truffles for around $80.