Yesterday we reminisced about our visit to Paradise Farms, prior to that we saw Hani Khouri at his Redland Mediterranean Organics, and today we'll tie up the details of our action-packed trip to the Redland. We hope you'll be inspired enough to hit the road and head there yourself this weekend.
Our second-to-last stop was Robert Is Here: part fruit stand, part farm, and part zoo, specializing in rare and exotic fruits and, uh, goats. Thankfully, the two are sequestered. Having never been there, I wondered aloud why so many people were in line to buy produce.
"We're getting milkshakes," the gal in front of me announced, a tinge of aggravation in her tone. What the hell? I've never even been to this area, nor had I ever heard of a fruit stand with goats and milkshakes. Give a girl a break.
Trusting the crowd, I jumped into line too, wondering if I was craving chocolate, vanilla, or strawberry. But then I caught sight of the available choices, and panic set in. One, two, three, 10, 20 -- how many freaking flavors were there? Part of me was tempted to just throw an open tube of lipstick at the board to see which item got marked, but instead I closed my eyes and decided to order the first one I saw when my lids flitted open. Cherry key lime it was.
After waiting ten minutes to get my shake, I quickly decided in one sip that this place had mastered the art. That was one amazing milkshake. Creamy enough to make its way through the straw without too much suction, yet thick enough to withstand spoon treatment. Bright scarlet from actual cherry peels, not Red No. 40. Sweet enough to fulfill a craving, but tart enough to make it tantalizing for the tongue. It was definitely the kind of treat to ruin a meal.
Luckily, I was there with a handful of other experimental types, so I also got to try mango, jackfruit, and banana passion varieties. No complaints.
While I worked my milkshake down to a few icy drops, I wandered around to briefly peek at the wildlife and check out the impressive display of sauces, salad dressings, packaged snacks, and flavored honeys. This Robert has quite a business going here, I thought as I watched people shell out $5 per milkshake and then dump another $30 or more on fruits they had never heard of until that day and crazy condiments like the pumpkin butter that's still in my fridge.
Saddled with bags, chef Dewey LoSasso asked Robert where we should go for great Mexican food the area is known for. He suggested we hit Taqueria Morelia in Florida City, a small Mexican resto, with the caveat that it's nothing to look at.
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He was correct. The place was as visually unappealing as a hospital hallway. But the flautas, enchiladas, chiles relleños, and fajitas looked divine. We dug into a few burritos and soft corn tortillas with chicken, beef, and chorizo. More obscure choices such as al pastor (a stewed blend of seasoned pork) and tripa y lenuga (intestine and tongue) were passed around too, and the bravest in the group gave them a try. We agreed that if you didn't know what you were actually eating, you'd probably find it delicious. We also enjoyed the suadero (described as a "special meat of the beef ribs"), which was tender, moist, and flavorful.
Bellies full yet again, we climbed into our cars and headed back to Miami, recalling our highlights from the visit to Redland Mediterranean Organics, Paradise Farms, Robert Is Here, and Taqueria Morelia. We had eaten goat milk feta, lychees, milkshakes, tacos, and countless other treats I'm loathe to admit -- all in a matter of a few hours -- yet none of us cried for so much as a GasX. Yep, that day was more than totally edible -- it was truly incredible.
Note: Robert Is Here will be closed this year from Labor Day until November 1.