Serafina, an iconic New York City Italian restaurant chain, will open inside Aventura Mall this month.
The eatery will be located on the second floor of the mall's new expanded wing, next door to Tesla and Topshop. Open for lunch and dinner, the kitchen will be led by executive chef Dustin Ward, who most recently helmed Trump Doral's BLT Prime. Ward will serve a mixture of Serafina's signature plates while also incorporating some of his own Miami flair.
Though Ward's new dishes have not yet been announced, Serafina Miami will offer its usual fare, including pastas, pizzas, salads, and entrées such as a filet mignon burger topped with Gorgonzola and caramelized onions and a slice of bass in a Pinot Grigio dressing atop a bed of zucchini and leeks. Wine and cocktails will be handled by the Miami-based hospitality consulting company Cocktail Cartel. Food and drink prices are not yet available.
The 220-seat restaurant will offer indoor and outdoor seating with large tables, copper accents, and dim lighting. A private event space will sit beneath a 65-foot pergola on the restaurant's patio, sectioned off by a 12-foot plant wall, creating a makeshift room. Similar to other Serafina locations, the Aventura eatery will be decorated with a brightly lit infinity sign and a neon angel wing, which is a nod to the restaurant's name (serafina means "angel" in Italian).
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This isn't the first time the Serafina folks decided to take a chance on Miami. In 2012, the brand opened in the former Tudor House space in the Dream South Beach. Ralph Pagano's Naked Taco took over the location in 2014.
Originating in New York City, Serafina is behind more than 30 locations across the world, including outposts in Philadelphia, Boston, Dubai, Tokyo, Istanbul, and Mumbai. The Aventura branch is a partnership among Benny Shabtai, Stacey Shabtai, Samantha Cooper, and Mike Baccaro, along with Serafina founders Vittorio Assaf and Fabio Granato.
Serafina Miami joins a growing number of recently opened eateries at the Aventura Mall. Michael Schwartz's Genuine Pizza and Cvi.che 105 opened on the ground floor of the new three-level wing, along with Blue Bottle Coffee's second South Florida location. Pubbelly Sushi is expected to open Saturday, February 10, followed by Tap 42 within the next year. There's also the new Treats Food Hall, which will include outposts of Hank & Harry's Delicatessen, My Ceviche, Zuuk Mediterranean Kitchen, Poke 305, and Shake Shack.
Serafina Miami. Open 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily for lunch and dinner; serafinamia.com. Serafina Miami will also be available for takeout, delivery, and catering.