Cuban-American restaurateur Jason Odio is set to open his first Miami Beach concept in early January 2020: Bebito's Casa de Cafecito. Situated inside the newly renovated apartment complex Flamingo Point, formerly the Flamingo, Bebito's will be a neighborhood café for locals who want to enjoy the flavors and nostalgia of Cuban coffee in a more modern, Instagram-friendly setting.
Bebito's, a nod to the nickname of Odio's grandfather, will pay homage to his family and heritage — his parents are first-generation immigrants. "I wanted to provide a Cuban café concept that catered more towards what my friends and I are used to," he says. "We don't typically hang out at a little ventanita; we go to a high-end barista coffee shop and drink our cortadito with almond milk. I wanted to marry the two."
Odio has tapped some of Miami's best culinary talent — including chef Henry Hane of B Bistro & Bakery and pastry chef Dallas Wynne of Stubborn Seed — to create a crave-worthy menu of savory delights and pastries.
Expect items such as chorizo manchego croquetas, baked egg dishes, and a variety of tartines with a Cuban twist. Wynne will bake dulce de leche cookies, among other items, and there will also be a curated wine list with organic and biodynamic offerings. Bebito's will serve a private-label signature coffee blend using beans from Brazil, Colombia, and Ecuador, which will be used in traditional Cuban-style cafecito and cafe con leche. The pricing is meant to be affordable, with coffees ranging from $4 to $5 a serving.
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Odio's previous accomplishments include Baby Jane in Brickell, Ariete in Coconut Grove, and, most recent, La Otra in Brickell. Bebito's marks his return to South Beach, which is where he began his early days in nightlife. "It's crazy that the majority of my professional career was in South Beach nightlife, and I left five years ago to open Sidebar. Now I'm coming back to South Beach, but in the opposite of what nightlife is: early-morning coffee and breakfast."
Over the past five years, Odio has made an impact in the neighborhoods where he has opened his bars and restaurants. As a Miami native, he says, "I was always a big advocate of highlighting other areas outside of South Beach, but now I see South Beach going through this transitional period, and it's very interesting. I'm born and raised in Miami, and I feel like South Beach needs something like this, with more of a homegrown feel to it."
He even hints at the possibility of doing something nightlife-related in South Beach one day, though it won't be anytime soon. Until then, he chuckles, "Instead of vodka sodas, it's lattes with almond milk."
Bebito's Cafe de Cafecito. Opening January 2020 at Flamingo Point, 1504 Bay Rd., #106, Miami Beach; @bebitoscafe.