Before the Design District became what it is today, few restaurants dared open north of 36th Street in Miami. Soyka took a chance. In 1999, the restaurant began operating after its owner, the legendary Mark Soyka, purchased the space as a garage for his vintage car collection and then realized the East Side lacked a decent restaurant.
Soyka opened with a simple-yet-straightforward concept: comfort food in a casual and laid back environment that feels like your dining room. Fifteen years later, not too much has changed. Brunch, however, got a little bit sweeter. Short Order was invited to sample the offerings and witness the live entertainment. Pictures after the jump.
Soyka is now open for brunch both Saturday and Sunday and starting bright and early at 9 a.m. with bottomless fun in the form of booze.
For $22, you can sip on unlimited mimosas, bellinis and Bloody Marys. And these are no skimpy or watered downed drinks as our recent list is often the case. Soyka has an unofficial heavy pour policy to get your Sunday funday going.
Another thing you get you going is Soyka's French onion soup, only $7 and enough to get you full (the unlimited booze helps).
In case you want something else, opt for the tuna tartare ($14). Wakame salad, avocado, sesame seeds, soy ginger dressing, and crispy wontons make this dish well worth it.
The lox and bagel ($14) is not to be missed. I've been to Soyka plenty of times and not once did I ever think to order the bagel. On this particular visit, our server said we must try them, as they are freshly baked and are his number one pick on the menu. There's nothing crazy about salmon, cream cheese, red onion and capers, but its taste is unlike many other bagels in Miami.
Our server happened to be Mark Soyka's youngest son, who was just five when the restaurant opened. "I've grown up here," confessed Danieli Soyka. A month shy of turning 21, he tells us this place is like home. "People have been coming here for years. This is like their living room, and we want them to see it that way."
He also recommended we try the brunch pizza ($15), which is topped with tomatoes, mozzarella, bacon, shiitake mushrooms, shaved pecorino, truffle oil and two eggs, sunny side up. It's exactly what you'd imagine brunch on a pie to be.
Maestro sits down at the piano beginning at noon, so be sure not to miss him. He's pretty amazing. If you miss Van Dyke's (we all do), you'll be glad to know you can expect similar tunes at Soyka.
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And to finish things off, go for the sticky date pudding ($8). If toffee, bread pudding, and the most moist cupcake in the world had a baby, this would be it. Topped with vanilla ice cream, the whole thing just melts in your mouth.
Follow Carla on Twitter @ohcarlucha