While summer break is winding down, the dining scene in Miami is heating up. August 1 marks the return of Miami Spice, offering locals the opportunity to dine at some of the finest restaurants at reduced prices ($23 for lunch and $39 for dinner).
This year, the restaurants of the Fontainebleau Miami Beach will celebrate a 15th year of Miami Spice. Hakkasan, Scarpetta, Stripsteak by Michael Mina, and La Côte will serve signature staples at reasonable prices while also introducing new items to the menu. Vegetarian options will be available at all venues, and diners will enjoy discounted valet parking of $15 with restaurant validation. Wine flights can be ordered at an additional cost.
Scarpetta will serve a three-course dinner seven days a week. Each meal begins with a selection of artisan breads paired with olive oil, butter, or eggplant caponata. Appetizers include creamy polenta with a fricassee of truffled mushrooms, mozzarella in carrozza with stewed baby tomatoes, and a Mediterranean octopus with potatoes, capers, and olives. This year, Scarpetta's selection of entreés will finally include Scott Conant's famous spaghetti with tomato sauce and basil, along with a beef short-rib agnolotti; roasted branzino with artichokes, olives, and anchovy-and-tomato dressing; and oven-roasted chicken with herb spaetzle, broccoli, and fegato sauce. Fruity dessert selections include a refreshing coconut panna cotta and a warm berry crostata with walnut ice cream.
Stripsteak also offers Spice dinner deals every day. Appetizers include spicy hamachi tartare with avocado and green papaya; lacinato kale with shaved Parmesan, pickled tomatoes, and anchovy dressing; and ricotta cavatelli carbonara with Wilson Farms bacon and a poached hen egg. For entrées, diners can choose from a selection of quality meats and fish, such as grilled mahi-mahi with a ginger-carrot emulsion; a 16-ounce filet mignon with a jewel yam purée, charred rapini, and a port wine jus; and pan-roasted chicken breast with maitake mushrooms, confit fingerling potatoes, and asparagus. The filet, pairing well with the creamy yam purée, outshines the other savory items on the menu. To end, desserts are chocolate ganache cake with Tahitian vanilla ice cream and key lime pie with caramelized honey and lemongrass sherbet.
Hakkasan serves dim sum lunches Saturday and Sunday from noon to 2:45 p.m. and offers dinner all week. All dishes from this eatery are served family-style. For dinner, there are a variety of savory options that show off chef Jian Heng Loo's modern approach to Asian cuisine. The meal begins with an appetizer of crispy shrimp with mango in green mustard sauce and follows with an entrée of steamed red snapper with spicy soy bean sauce, stir-fried beef with black pepper bean sauce, and stir-fried baby pak choi with garlic. In addition, there's chicken fried rice with asparagus for the table. Dessert selections include mango custard with grapefruit, calamansi, and coconut sorbet, and a selection of homemade macarons.
The weekend dim sum lunch at Hakkasan is the best of Fontainebleau's deals: for $23 diners can enjoy a Michelin starred concept and indulge in generous portions. The restaurant does, however, require a two guest per table minimum to receive the special offer. The dim sum basket will feature lotus root with mushroom chicken shui mai, spinach scallop dumplings, and black vegetable dumplings. Jasmine tea smoked chicken with soy sauce and stir-fried baby pak choi with garlic comes next, followed by beef fried rice with ginger. The dessert options for lunch are the same as those of the dinner menu: mango custard or homemade macarons.
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La Côte will offer lunch every day in a newly revamped alfresco environment. New Times did not sample any of the Spice dishes but previewed the menu. For an appetizer, diners can choose an espelette cured salmon with snap peas, mint, compressed cucumber, and radish or an Alsatian pissaladière (a French pizza) with FB bacon, farmer's cheese, and caramelized onion. The entrées include roast chicken with provençal garbanzo beans, blistered tomato, and lemon thyme jus; seared mahi-mahi with a mélange of spring vegetables, chives, and warm shallot vinaigrette; and cavatapi primavera with shemiji mushrooms, lacinato kale, gremolata, and sunchoke nage. For dessert, there's crème brûlée with fresh berries or chocolate profiteroles with raspberry coulis and vanilla gelato.
All Miami Spice menus are subject to change. For dinner reservations, call 877-326-7412 or visit fontainebleau.com/dining.