One of Wynwood's hottest spots is expanding to the Miami Beach — at least for awhile.
Coyo Taco is opening a pop-up restaurant at the former Nobu space at South Beach's Shore Club. Nobu closed that location October 30 and relocated to its new home at the Eden Roc Resort this past Monday. Nobu had been a presence in South Beach since 2001.
For the past few months, rumors have been swirling that Coyo Taco would open another location. In September 2015, partner Sven Vogtland confirmed he and his team had plans to open another Coyo Taco in the near future, confiding they had looked at three locations. Vogtland also mentioned that if a pop-up opportunity came along, it would be an attractive option: "I think a pop-up to test the waters could work for us, and it's enticing to us. Feeling out a neighborhood before we really commit to a 15-year plan is a good idea."
Now the plans have taken shape. The Coyo Taco pop-up will open mid-November and will remain open throughout the season, possibly through April or May. Miami.com reported the news last week.
Vogtland says Shore Club management reached out to Coyo's partners. "They asked if we would be interested in the [Nobu] space. We thought it would be a good fit because it is a staple hotel in the community."
The Coyo Taco pop-up menu will closely mirror the original in Wynwood. Chef/partner Scott Linquist explains, "When the Shore Club approached us, they were adamant about having the same Coyo and the same vibe. They want it to be casual and straight up, the same as we are now."
There will be some changes to accommodate Coyo Taco's location inside a hotel — like breakfast and weekend brunch. Linquist says, "This is the perfect stage for both breakfast and brunch. I literally wrote a breakfast menu last night." The menu will also reflect some healthier items to go with its hearty breakfast filled with huevos rancheros and Mexican biscuits and gravy. Linquist calls the menu a mix of healthier, beachy options with a touch of hangover breakfast mixed in for good measure. "We are literally going to have to work night and day to finalize what we are going to do. We have a lot of ideas." The chef says he's also looking at creating some new dishes for the Miami Beach menu that have ingredients that are a bit more luxurious. "Don't worry," he adds, "I won't have a foie-gras-and-truffle taco on the menu."
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Coyo's Alan Drummond adds that the SoBe Coyo will offer a vast tequila and mezcal selection. Although the team won't make structural changes to the space, the location will definitely look like Coyo. Drummond also does not rule out additional Coyo Taco outposts in the future. "There is an expansion plan, but we think location is crucial. We are taking our time to find the right locations." Drummond is quick to point out that, even with expansion plans, Coyo is not about to become a cookie-cutter chain.
When Coyo pops up in South Beach, it will join a cadre of other taco restaurants including Taquiza, Huahua's Taqueria, Bodega Taqueria y Tequila, and Naked Taco. Chef Linquist sees it as healthy competition. "I feel what i do is well researched. I put 20 years into studying the cuisine of Mexico and developing my recipes.
"The fact is, I like all of them, and I hope our fans follow us. If there's some healthy competition, that's great. That's what our country is built on."