A month ago, Grove Bay Hospitality Group subleased restaurant space at the former Tiramesu space at 101 Washington Ave., sparking rumors that Top Chef winner Jeremy Ford would helm the operation.
Today it was announced that Stubborn Seed by Jeremy Ford will open there this September. Ford will be joined in the kitchen by his longtime friend, chef Joe Mizzoni, to create a rotating menu that concentrates on locally sourced ingredients.
The restaurant's name is a nod to the persistence required to open a restaurant. "The name means a lot to us," Ford says. "It's our stubborn approach to what we do and what we purchase."
Stubborn Seed's intimate setting is a departure from Ford's time at Matador Room. "I feel that it shaped me in organizational skills. My goal there was to carry his vision the way he wanted to do it," he says of his tenure under Jean-Georges Vongerichten.
Now Ford wants to break the barrier between guest and chef by being present to show his abilities. "My goal is to make Miami happy. I feel like I have to give back and give people a taste of what I can do."
Though the menu isn't set, the restaurant will take inspirations from Asia, Europe, and Miami's own melting pot of cultures. Items will include a five-second wahoo crudo with a spicy buttermilk dressing, and suckling pig with charred turnip and spiced cherry jam, served family-style. Says Ford: "We're going to showcase local product and cook from the heart." The restaurant will also offer a full bar.
This is the first of two restaurants in the Ford/Grove Bay partnership, according to Grove Bay's cofounder and co-CEO, Ignacio Garcia-Menocal. Afishionado in Coconut Grove ran into delays, and the partners wanted to move fast to give Ford an outlet for his culinary talents. "We knew we wanted to work with Jeremy, so we thought, Why not try to do something quicker and sooner?"
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Garcia-Menocal thought Miami Beach's South of Fifth area was perfect for a chef-driven concept. "The neighborhood has some great and popular big restaurants, like Joe's and Prime One Twelve, but this is an intimate restaurant. Jeremy will be there, and guests will have a different experience."
"At Stubborn Seed, people will have the opportunity to connect with Jeremy on a level they haven’t been able to before," Grove Bay cofounder and co-CEO Francesco Balli says. "This concept will offer guests a truly unique experience, with a special tasting menu that will take diners on a journey, with Jeremy as their guide.”
Stubborn Seed. 101 Washington Ave., Miami Beach; 786-322-5211, stubbornseed.com. Open starting in September for dinner daily at 6 p.m.