Food News

New Ownership at The Gastropub at Jake's in South Miami also Opening "Cherry on Top" in Coconut Grove... Plus, Gables Rivera Pizza Shutters

It was a deal owner Patrick Gleber (also of Tobacco Road) couldn't refuse.

Baruch Pletner, an Israeli entrepreneur, strolled into Jake's last Tuesday and expressed interest in purchasing the newly renovated Jake's.  Fast forward to today, and Pletner is already making the place his own, in more ways than one.

He's brought in two chefs from the Ritz Carlton in Naples to take

over in the kitchen. Corn bread has been replaced with naan (one of the

chefs is Indian,) although not baked in a tandoor.  We found out the hard way that by grilling it instead, they will need to be extra vigilant for doneness.  It arrives to the

table with a sweet, spiced butter oddly matched with the traditional

cilantro chutney. But boy is that butter good, we want to smear it all over everything within reach. 

According to Pletner, Jake's was inconsistent but

he's tightening things up.  For example, he says, there are revisions to the mezze platter

like making the baba ghanoush more true to what you'd find in his

native Israel.  We didn't realize watermelon and feta triangles are en

vogue there, too, but they sure tasted good. Although for the most part

the menu seems very familiar to pre-July 28, there's a new hand-carved

Kobe beef with basmati rice and a "dayboat" cod with chanterelle

mushrooms, asparagus and mashed potatoes in a brandy cream sauce. 

Desserts are completely revamped.  After the meal we had there last

night, despite some bright spots, they're going to need a few weeks to get acquainted if

consistency is the goal. 

Executive Chef Richard

Plasencia will remain on board, but he'll be in charge of the kitchen at Pletner's upcoming

"Cherry on Top" at 3413 Main Highway.  Contrary to its name, this three

level concept will not solely involve ice cream sundaes, but rather a deli on

the ground level, restaurant on floor two, and a wine bar on floor

three.  Does this sound familiar?  You may have heard of another

recent trifecta, Chicago's Bakery & Deli and now Steakhouse, that settled

into Commodore Plaza this summer to much neighborhood word of mouth.  How successful these two will be, only time will tell.  Management from Jake's will also be

part of the team at Cherry, scheduled to open at the end of the month.

Around the corner, in the strip mall where Mischa's Cupcakes and the Subway that was recently burgled reside, Gables Riviera Pizza has sprinkled its last mozzarella shred.  It's been closed for a few weeks now, paper on windows and lights out.  It was only a matter of time, with Five Guys and Pizza Rustica coming soon to the neighborhood.

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Jackie Sayet