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
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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
menu, we'd have to agree.