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Mash Potatoes in Coral Gables Serves More Than Tubers

When you think of a place named Mash Potatoes, your mind likely strays to a restaurant serving versions of smashed tubers. 

Though the name implies just that, Mash Potatoes, located at 1533 Madruga Ave. in Coral Gables, serves a much larger variety of comfort foods along with its namesake dish. 

Owner and executive chef Scott Wise says when he and his two partners decided to open a restaurant three years ago, the working title was Plywood. But a family member gushed at Wise's mashed potato recipe, saying the entire eatery should be named after the dish. Wise has since gone on his own, but the name remained.

In the business for 17 years, Wise says his time studying in Europe inspired the food he makes. “I lived in France and was mentored by Michelin-star chef Sydney Bun. It was there that I fell in love with French cooking, and while the menu itself isn’t French, I try to incorporate that innate simplicity into my food.” 

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Mash Potatoes offers comfort food but also features more health-conscious items, including vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, Paleo, and sugar-free items. Though diabetes is prevalent in America, few restaurants cater to those who have the disease, says Wise, a diabetic himself. “I wanted to create a menu that was both tasty and good for you. It’s hard to find options, but I wanted to alleviate that with the menu.” 
The dishes offered are wide-ranging and include several renditions of mac 'n' cheese ($6 to $11), with the Brie and bacon version a favorite. Bobotie ($13.50), the national dish of South Africa, features curried meatloaf dressed with homemade chutney. Of course, there are five varieties of mashed potatoes to choose from, including a truffle-and-porcini version ($6).

The portions are large, especially when compared with the prices, which draws in University of Miami students as well as those working in the surrounding areas. Wise says he hopes to keep serving good food  and to let more people in on the secret that Mash Potatoes serves more than just mashed potatoes.

Mash Potatoes is open Monday through Wednesday from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Thursday and Friday from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.; and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

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