The newly opened 1 Hotel South Beach may have had some setbacks, but the finished product is a stunner. The revamped resort, which had many previous lives, including the Rooney Plaza, the Perry and the Gansevoort, is a tranquil beauty filled with bromeliads, white fur rugs, and sunwashed woods.
A living mural of a man in a pool by 2Alas fills the reception area, which faces a soon-to-open Tom Coliccio-run farm to table grab-and-go concept.
STK finally opened on the property, after a flood caused delays. Then, a small fire delayed Tom Colicchio's farm-to-table restaurant, Beachcraft.The restaurant's giant grill, which is the focal point of the kitchen and its work, is not ready for prime time, so the restaurant is still not open for lunch and dinner. Beachcraft, however, quietly opened for weekday breakfast and weekend brunch a few weeks ago for hotel guests and is now welcoming the public for morning meals. Lunch and dinner service should start at the end of June.
In addition, the lobby bar, Tom on Collins is open, serving up a collection of bar items that could read like a full lunch or dinner menu at less ambitious endeavors.
Tom on Collins' eight seat bar is warmly lit by a handmade light sculpture that incorporates live air plants. Seating spills out into the property's lounge space, where guests can stretch out on white sofas and look out onto Collins Avenue.
Cocktails are made with fresh herbs grown right on property, along with some fledgling fruit trees. Beverage director Charles Steadman has put together a list of drinks that compliment the bar's Miami Beach home, using plenty of local citrus like the All The Buzz ($15), made with Plymouth gin, Aperol, Carpano Antica, and grapefruit bitters.
The bar walks the farm-to-table talk, with used wine crates broken down and used as napkin holders and venus fly traps serving as both conversation piece and fruit fly deterrent.
Bar food comes from the Beachcraft kitchen, helmed by executive chef Michael Fiorello. The chef's forte is in his work with fresh vegetables. Fiorello says that he's done extensive research on farms along the coast, with his biggest challenge, of course, is sourcing fruit and produce year-round. Chef Fiorello says that he's been working with local farms now, and as the growing season ends here, will work his way to Georgia. The chef also plans on growing additional vegetables on property, and plans to also maintain bee hives on the roof.
Even with the kitchen waiting for its grill, delicious items are being turned out. The fava bean flatbread with ricotta, pea tendrils, and Parmesan ($14) is a burst of color and flavor. Other flatbreads include ones topped with heirloom tomato and manila clam.
A porchetta tartine with grilled escarole, Parmesan-caper aioli, and lemon confit ($14) is served on Zak the Baker bread. Chef Fiorello says that the bread is one of the only things not completely made in house. The reason? "Zak the Baker's sourdough is the absolute best. Plus, he's a great guy."
A grass fed burger is served on a house-baked English muffin and topped with heirloom tomatoes, special sauce, and house-made bread and butter pickles ($22).
The thousand-layer doughnut is light, flaky, sweet, and tart. The doughnut (which may or may not sort of resemble a certain dessert must never be named), is drizzled with key lime curd and topped with rose petals. It's a must get ($10).
Tom on Collins is open daily, starting at 3 p.m. On Friday evenings, the bar hosts live music. Breakfast at Beachcraft is served weekdays from 7 - 11 a.m.; weekend brunch is served on Saturday and Sundays from noon - 3 p.m.
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