Serafina offers more than a dozen pizzas.EXPAND
Serafina offers more than a dozen pizzas.
Courtesy of Serafina

Serafina Brings Italian Food and a Magician to Aventura Mall

Serafina, an iconic New York City Italian restaurant chain, is bustling inside Aventura Mall. Opened this past February, a recent Saturday evening included a live DJ, a roaming magician, and platters of truffle focaccia, steaming pastas, and generously poured wines.

Located on the second floor of the mall's new expanded wing, next door to Tesla and Topshop, Serafina sustains a steady flow of customers during lunch and dinner. Weekend evenings are particularly busy as well, often requiring advance reservations.

With about 220 seats, some of which spill out into the mall, Serafina maintains its own unique atmosphere. Similar to other Serafina locations, the Aventura eatery is decorated with a brightly lit infinity sign and a neon angel wing, a nod to the restaurant's name (serafina means "angel" in Italian). Large tables and dim lighting fill the space along with a charming outdoor patio lined with dangling lights and a 12-foot plant wall.

The kitchen is led by executive chef Dustin Ward, who most recently helmed Trump Doral's BLT Prime. Ward serves a mixture of Serafina's signature plates while also incorporating some of his own Miami flair.

Black truffle pasta is among nearly a dozen varieties offered at Serafina.
Black truffle pasta is among nearly a dozen varieties offered at Serafina.
Courtesy of Serafina

Standout dishes include the focaccia di sofia, which comes drizzled in a truffle aioli; linguine allevongoleveraci, made with baby clams, tomatoes, white wine, and garlic; a watermelon, mint, arugula, and feta cheese salad; Italian buffalo mozzarella with sliced tomatoes; and sashimi carpaccio di filetto e tartufonero, in which thinly sliced prime filet mignon is showered in a warm black truffle sauce and topped with sautéed potato cubes.

There are also a number of pizzas, from mushrooms and spicy sausage to homemade pesto and pine nuts. Entées average $15 to $20.

For dessert, opt for the Sicilian cannoli, which is made tableside. Each diner receives a mascarpone- and ricotta-filled cannoli shell with candied orange, chocolate chips, and pistachios.

Plus, Serafina offers a DJ from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. on Saturday evenings. Keep an eye out for a roaming magician too, who approaches tables with complimentary card and coin tricks.

Originating in New York City, Serafina is behind more than 30 locations across the world, including outposts in Philadelphia, Boston, Dubai, Tokyo, Istanbul, and Mumbai. The Aventura branch is a partnership among Benny Shabtai, Stacey Shabtai, Samantha Cooper, and Mike Baccaro, along with Serafina founders Vittorio Assaf and Fabio Granato.

Serafina. Open Noon to 11 p.m. daily for lunch and dinner; serafinamia.com. Serafina Miami will also be available for takeout, delivery, and catering.

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