James Seyba, executive chef at Miam, is no longer behind the café/bistro's muffin/doughnut hybrids and hearty lunchtime sandwiches.
Seyba, who previously worked at the Broken Shaker, 27 Restaurant & Bar, and Centro Taco, left his position at the Wynwood staple earlier this month for a gig at Warsaw Coffee Company in Fort Lauderdale. He recently moved north and wanted to find a job closer to home.
"I had been looking for an opportunity to not work in Miami for some time," he says, "not because I don't like it, but the two-hour commute was a lot."
To Miam regulars, Seyba's departure might come as a surprise. The chef recently rolled out weekend dinner service at the café. The concept had a lukewarm reception, but breakfast and lunch at the Wynwood space remain strong.
At Warsaw Coffee Company, Seyba will focus on menu redevelopment and kitchen design. The coffee shop/bakery is close to opening an accompanying juice and cocktail bar, which Seyba will help launch too.
"[Warsaw's owners] want the food game to be equivalent to their drink game," he says. "It's kind of similar to Miam in the sense that it's mostly known as a coffee shop. They want a little bit of a revamp, which is why I'm there."
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Though Seyba won't miss his daily drive to and from Wynwood, he will always hold Miam close to his heart, he says. "I have a lot of appreciation and respect for Alexis [Jacot, Miam's owner]... He really let me take control of what I wanted to do there," he says.
"I was kind of ready for a new challenge, though," he adds. "I've run restaurants for years. I'm looking for a way to utilize my skills and experience in different ways now. I want to help places without getting tied down."
For now, Seyba's main focus is culinary consulting for Warsaw Coffee. He has other projects in the works, but details are still under wraps.