Neighborhood Joints

Cane a Sucre in North Miami Beach: Fig, Gorgonzola, and Honey With French Wine

The Vega brothers' first midtown/Design District eatery was Cane á Sucre. Since then, Tapas y Tintos and their most recent restaurant, Kouzina, have filled that spot. Now, Cane á Sucre in North Miami Beach is staying put.

Sitting nearly across the street from MOCA on North Miami Beach's main thoroughfare, the small sandwich shop boasts homemade menu items and a family-run operation.

Owners Michael and Sinuhé Vega are no strangers to the industry. They previously owned Uva 69 on Biscayne Boulevard. Michael, a chef who trained in Switzerland and France, came up with the idea of a thoughtfully made sandwich paired with a good glass of wine. Sinuhé, an artist who has exhibited artwork in the U.S. and Europe, is the brains behind the small business. He explains that opening in "underserviced areas with great potential" is the way to go. The location near MOCA, along with the nearby galleries and antique shops, is also a plus. The brothers try to incorporate as much of their French and Cuban roots into the place as possible. Small salutes to those roots include El Cubano sandwich ($8), with slow-roasted pork, caramelized onions, pepper jack cheese, and cornichons. The rest of the menu is relatively simple, albeit with small, thoughtful details.

The menu primarily consists of baguette sandwiches (including the breakfast varieties) and salads, French pastries, a few desserts, a small wine list, and burgers. A caesar salad ($6.50) comes topped with marinated red peppers, shaved Parmesan cheese, and croutons made from their homemade baguette. The house-made dressing is garlicky but not overpowering.

The lunch special includes a half of any sandwich and the soup of the day for $6.50. On a recent Saturday afternoon, the soup du jour was leek and potato. Parsley livened up the normally simple flavor combo. As for the sandwich, a standout is Le Fig, made with Gorgonzola cheese, fig confit, fresh oregano, walnuts, and a drizzle of honey on warm baguette. It's a great choice if you're looking for a nontraditional option.

Mango cheesecake ($4) is the star dessert of the bistro. It comes topped with mango purée and a dollop of white chocolate emulsion on the side. Other tempting options include chocolate and praline mousse crunch ($4.95), guava and cream cheese bread pudding with caramel sauce ($4.95), and assorted homemade cookies.

Flaky and fluffy chocolate croissants ($2.50) proffer a semisweet chocolate filling, which could've been more abundant. Cane also offers guava and cheese turnovers (much like a Cuban pastelito, $2.50), almond croissants ($3.50), and butter croissants ($2).

Cane á Sucre is open Monday through Saturday from 9:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. and is closed Sunday. Call (305) 891-0123 for more information.

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Alex Rodriguez