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Sardinia Previews Miami Spice Two Days Early

On a very popular South Beach corner -- which was once not so popular -- stands the restaurant that began it all: Sardinia Enoteca. It opened in October 2006 and earned rave reviews from then New Times critic Lee Klein. Located in an area where many others failed -- that was before the Pubbelly boys -- it has somehow stood its ground in the neighborhood.

In preparation for its participation in Miami Spice, which kicks off August 1 with New Times' Iron Fork, Sardinia is offering a July prix fixe menu and 40 percent off selected bottles of wine every Tuesday till further notice. So if you happen to take spinning classes at the popular Flywheel Sports and need some wining and dining after a rigorous workout, look no further than right down the street.

See also: Sardi Hearty

The prix fixe dinner menu is available Monday through Thursday and, like Miami Spice, priced at $39 per person excluding tax and gratuity. Menu options include three appetizer choices: caesar salad with ciabatta croutons and shaved Parmesan; filet mignon carpaccio with fresh baby arugula and pecorino cheese; or fregoletta -- Sardinian couscous with baby clams in a vermentino broth with thyme. We suggest the last. Entrées include protein as well as pasta options. After all, what's an Italian restaurant without pasta? There's paccheri (flat tube-shaped pasta) with veal meatballs, tomato, and asparagus tips; bucatini (long flat pasta) in a light tomato and olive oil sauce; veal scaloppine with wild mushrooms and asparagus tips; and sliced grilled yellowfin tuna over a bed of greens. Dessert selections change daily and depend upon what the chef has prepared.

Lunch is offered seven days a week and priced at $23 with an equal number of options, except a bit lighter. Choose from soup of the day, beef carpaccio; a radicchio, fennel, endive, orange, and rughetta salad; or veal meatballs with braised fennel for an appetizer. Succulent main plates include pappardelle cio ciara with homemade ricotta, tomatoes and black olives; house-made rigatoni with hot and sweet sausages and fresh peas; panino caprese if you're the sandwich type; or chicken stuffed with ham and cheese and sautéed with mushrooms if you're the chicken type. All of this and a bottle of wine at 40 percent off. That's plenty of reasons to go to South Beach on a Tuesday before Miami Spice officially kicks off.

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Carla Torres found her inner gourmand voice while writing for Miami New Times in 2012. She has also worked with Travel & Leisure and Ocean Drive and today is involved with a tech startup. She balances passions for wine, sweets, yoga, and kayaking.