Gibraltar, at Grove
Isle Hotel and Spa, in Coconut Grove, is an oasis within a tropical paradise.
Spectacular views of Biscayne Bay from both indoor and outdoor dining areas
make it a worthy destination. On Sundays, executive chef Rafael Melendez
rolls out a brunch buffet between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. It is $45 per person and
includes mimosa or champagne. For Father's Day, the brunch will be enhanced with sushi, a carving station with roasted lamb and prime rib, and soups. This holiday brunch is $65 per person.
There will be chafers
with traditional eggs benedict (run-of-the-mill), breakfast potatoes, apple
wood smoked bacon and sausage, char-grilled flank steak with caramelized onions and Cabernet reduction (better than you might expect; tender, moist, and
flavorful), and pan-seared chicken breast with a Madeira sauce (dry).
The cold salad station includes
mixed greens salad, orzo & roasted vegetable salad with basil pesto,
charcuterie & cheese platters, a display of whole fruit, and platter of
sliced seasonal fruit with berries. The presentations are beautifully laid out
and the cold food looks and tastes fresh.
Omelets are prepared made-to-order
by a chef attendant, with toppings including onions, peppers, mushrooms, and
cheddar cheese. Egg whites are also available.
The sweet station includes platters
of assorted cakes and sweet bites, breakfast breads & pastries, muffins
& danishes, and a chafer with buttermilk pancakes. A soup terrine with warm
maple syrup is close by.
The most visually attractive display
is the seafood, with oysters on the half-shell and shrimp cocktail beautifully
laid out over a bed of crushed ice. Cocktail sauce, horseradish, and lemon are
available. A smoked sockeye salmon platter includes all the capers, eggs,
onions, and cream cheese you can eat. Pre-cut mini bagels are offered.
In the past, service has been on point, accommodating, and
friendly. Food and beverage manager Isaac Paladino has been running the brunch
for years. The menu has bounced back and forth between a la carte and buffet. "It's been a
success," says Paladino, referring to the Sunday best. With unrivaled views, a cool ocean breeze, and a fairly priced
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menu, we'd have to agree.