The all-glass, four-story, standout and standalone restaurant on 1826 Collins Ave. no longer casts fuchsia light on diners. The purr of Lamborghinis out front has been silenced and the restaurant that defied the odds with a "level of style that matches the sophistication of cuisine" in South Beach is no more.
1826 Restaurant and Lounge, which received a rave review and our Best Restaurant in South Beach 2014 has closed. The lights are dim, the pristine furniture is locked inside. The Twitter account is also hidden and the phone disconnected. This was the ambitious restaurant that opened during South Beach Wine & Food Festival last year to critical acclaim and a visit from the editor-in-chief of Food & Wine, Dana Cowin, on opening night.
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Perhaps the signs were evident when Danny Grant, he of two Michelin stars, departed less than a year after opening to join 50 Eggs for a short stint at BTW.
Since then, another chef, Luke Bergman, came and left, and the restaurant with modern style with pod chairs never seemed to find it's promise again.
In this summer of shutdowns, which has also seen the Best Restaurant in South Beach, Oolite, close, this blow is especially hard.
OK, so we were wrong when we said, "Once inside 1826 Restaurant & Lounge, there's nowhere to go but up." The lamps that were designed with AK-47s and the lounge chairs made from recycled airplane skins took a real nosedive. There wasn't even a goodbye tweet.