Blue Collar and Mignonette are two of the most successful restaurants in Miami, and chef/owner Danny Serfer is showing a little gratitude for the love shown him over the years. Of course, the chef would thank his followers with food.
Serfer and his crew have decided to give back by stopping by various offices and organizations around town on the sly. At Blue Collar, the program is called "Guerrilla Lunch." At Mignonette, Serfer is providing "Random Acts of Shellfish."
The chef says the idea began at his seafood restaurant. "First we came up with Random Acts of Shellfish at Mignonette, where we ambush offices with 100 oysters and a shucking knife. So we wanted to come up with a Blue Collar equivalent — something fun, invasive, and would be a surprise — and Guerrilla Lunch was born."
The premise is that each month, Serfer will choose a company or organization from the people who follow his restaurants on social media and request a visit. "We do a Guerrilla Lunch once every other month," Serfer says, "and we put on Mignonette's Random Act of Shellfish on the months in between, so we're always scheming." He and his team will crash the chosen business with plenty of food for about 10 to 15 people. "We like to keep the lunches intimate."
What does Serfer get out of the program? “We love the look of people when they realize we brought Blue Collar to them. And we end up having our own private ‘focus group’ since everyone enjoys talking about food."
If you're still thinking there's no such thing as a free lunch, take a gander at these goodies. New Times played guinea pig for Blue Collar's Guerrilla Lunch program. The chef surprised hungry writers with an array of Corben sandwiches, chicken cordon bleu, big ragouts, fries, latkes, bread pudding, and even beer. It suffices to say that no work was done that afternoon as the entire editorial staff lapsed into a gentle food coma.
National YoungArts Foundation recently received the Random Acts of Shellfish treatment, with Serfer shucking his heart out at the foundation's headquarters.
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If you'd like your workplace to be a candidate for either of free-lunch escapades, simply follow the restaurants on Twitter — @bluecollarmiami and @MignonetteMIA — or contact the restaurants via Facebook and Instagram, and let them know you'd like a visit and why.
If you'd like an inside track on how your tweet can stand out, heed Serfer's advice: "We like funny tweets and worthwhile causes. We already received submissions from the Doctor's Lounge at West Kendall Baptist Hospital, the rehab gym at Jackson Memorial Hospital, and the Guardian Ad Litems of Miami."
If you simply can't wait for Serfer to show up with big ragouts for everyone, Blue Collar takes reservations through Resy and offers food delivery through Caviar. Serfer says the restaurant, on the verge of celebrating its fourth anniversary in January, is going strong. "Blue Collar has the strongest team it's ever had in the kitchen, while the front of the house has faces you'll recognize. Many of them have been with us since day one."
Serfer says that although the menu still has tried-and-true favorites like pork 'n' beans and Corbens, he encourages diners to try something new. "Thus far, our new favorite menu items are the spaghetti squash with Parmesan and butter; seared scallops with fennel and clams; new dailies like meatloaf, smothered pork shoulder, and meatball parm; and, of course, the breakfast sandwich served at lunch, probably because it has a latke."