Do you remember Phuc Yea? The temporary Vietnamese restaurant that opened for a season in 2011 was one of the first pop-up restaurants in Miami, taking over downtown's Crown Bistro during dinner hours.
The little temporary spot garnered quite a following in the few months it was open, with people mourning the restaurant's planned closure even though partners Aniece Meinhold and Cesar Zapata opened the Federal Food Drink & Provisions just a few months later. Every once in a while, Phuc Yea would pop up around town for a night, just as a little reminder that it was still around, but dormant -- like a butterfly waiting to emerge from its chrysalis.
Now, fans of Phuc Yea's dankest Viet-noms can rejoice that the restaurant is being resurrected at a permanent home.
See also: Moonchine on the Seller's Block
Meinhold just confirmed that the restaurant will reopen this spring at 7100 Biscayne Blvd. Though that's fantastic news, it comes with the closing of Moonchine Asian Bistro. The popular 100-seat restaurant was put on the selling block in November 2014 with an asking price of $399,000 for the 3,900-square-foot property.
Menihold says she and Zapata are looking at a mid-May opening, but the duo has yet to plan the menu or the space. Whatever is in the works for the space, Meinhold seems excited to simply get the keys. "I think it's just cool that Phuc Yea is permanent, all on the heels of Best New Restaurant and our third anniversary at the Federal. I'm feeling truly blessed."
In 2013, Menihold told New Times that opening Phuc Yea! as a permanent place was the plan, "but money is always an issue in terms of how quickly it would happen."
The Phuc Yea pop-up, which also included partner Daniel Treiman, featured a rotating menu of Vietnamese-inspired dishes with the whimsical touches for which Chef Zapata is now famous. A sample menu included Roasty, Toasty Goodness char sui roast pork ($16), Oodles of Noodles bánh cuốn ($7.50), and sweet 'n' sour chicharrones heo xào chua ngọt ($9). Let's hope some of them make it onto the permanent menu.
Follow us on Facebook at Miami New Times Food & Drink.
Keep Miami New Times Free... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Miami with no paywalls.