First Bites

American Harvest Opens in Brickell City Centre, First of Many Locations

Blue steak tacos.
Blue steak tacos. Photo courtesy of Grove Bay Hospitality
click to enlarge American Harvest is a fast-casual concept in Brickell City Centre. - PHOTO BY VALERIA NEKHIM LEASE
American Harvest is a fast-casual concept in Brickell City Centre.
Photo by Valeria Nekhim Lease
Brickell City Centre is changing virtually every day, and one of the newest food concepts to open at the indoor-outdoor mall is American Harvest. The fast-casual eatery concentrates on clean farm-to-table fare that's ready in less than five minutes. It's the latest from Grove Bay Hospitality Group, the folks behind Glass & Vine in Coconut Grove.

Ignacio Garcia-Menocal, a partner in the restaurant group, says he and his team plan to open many more American Harvest locations in the near future. He's an alum of another local restaurant group, 50 Eggs. New Times was invited to the restaurant last week to taste some of its signature dishes and get a glimpse of the the cozy, modern-meets-rustic interior.

The counter-service eatery has a menu that's divided into four sections: bites, handhelds, salads, and harvest bowls and skillets. General manager Warren Jones says many customers order based on what looks good on Instagram.
click to enlarge Harvest Cobb salad - PHOTO BY VALERIA NEKHIM LEASE
Harvest Cobb salad
Photo by Valeria Nekhim Lease
The Harvest Cobb salad ($10) pairs mixed greens with a bacon-and-pumpkin-seed crumble, organic black beans, queso fresco, avocado, and baby heirloom tomatoes in a chimichurri vinaigrette. All the ingredients are fresh as can be, and the bacon/pumpkin-seed combo is delicious. Any salad here can be beefed up by adding grass-fed steak, natural chicken breast, no-mayo chicken salad, sustainable tuna, or a curried quinoa-and-shiitake patty ($4 to $7).
click to enlarge Roasted sweet potatoes. - PHOTO BY VALERIA NEKHIM LEASE
Roasted sweet potatoes.
Photo by Valeria Nekhim Lease
American Harvest's roasted sweet potatoes ($4) are hefty and come prepared in a soy-and-butter glaze. They're perfectly crisp and some of the best in town. Sustainable and simple cuisine is what this new spot is all about, and the prices are wallet-friendly too.
click to enlarge Blue steak tacos. - PHOTO COURTESY OF GROVE BAY HOSPITALITY
Blue steak tacos.
Photo courtesy of Grove Bay Hospitality
Jones says the tortillas at American Harvest are made in Miami by a woman with decades of experience. For the restaurant's blue steak tacos ($13), Myers all-natural, grass-fed steak is served alongside caramelized shallots, chimichurri vinaigrette, avocado, and fresh cilantro.
click to enlarge Chicken salad sandwich on naan bread. - PHOTO BY VALERIA NEKHIM LEASE
Chicken salad sandwich on naan bread.
Photo by Valeria Nekhim Lease
To keep things healthier, the chicken salad is made with a yogurt sauce in lieu of mayo, and the meat is cooked on a rotisserie. The chicken salad sandwich ($11) uses naan bread and comes with toasted pecans, Granny Smith apples, and that bacon-and-pumpkin-seed crumble for extra oomph.
click to enlarge American Harvest burger - PHOTO BY VALERIA NEKHIM LEASE
American Harvest burger
Photo by Valeria Nekhim Lease
During lunch, there's a line out the door, but it moves quickly, and the food is ready in less than five minutes. Most patrons seem to order the signature burger ($10), featuring a combination of grass-fed chuck short rib and brisket. Fontina cheese, house-made mayo, and caramelized shallots top the patty, served on a Martin's potato bun.
click to enlarge Cupcakes from Buttercream bakery in South Miami. - PHOTO BY VICTORIA NEKHIM LEASE
Cupcakes from Buttercream bakery in South Miami.
Photo by Victoria Nekhim Lease
For dessert, there's a cupcake selection from South Miami's Buttercream. American Harvest strives to source locally and use only the highest-quality produce, meat, and seafood. The dining room is full of shoppers and workers on their lunch break and is a nice addition to Brickell City Centre's array of dining options, including Luke's Lobster and Pubbelly Sushi. They will soon be joined by Tacology Taqueria, from the owners of Cantina La Veinte; Dr Smood; and several other eateries. A 38,000-square-foot Italian food hall is also slated to open.

Follow Valeria Nekhim Lease on Twitter and Instagram.
KEEP MIAMI NEW TIMES FREE... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Valeria Nekhim was born in the Ukraine and raised in Montreal. She has lived in Manhattan and Miami. Her favorite part of food writing is learning the stories of chefs and restaurateurs.