It's sometimes a little scary when a restaurant you like decides to go bigger. There's always that fear that quality may suffer, that it'll lose its essence, that it may not be "what it used to be."
But for Spanish restaurant, Xixón (pronounced SHE-shon), it seems like moving from the slightly cramped space it used to occupy on Coral Way to a space thrice its size was a good decision. While there was some charm to the old, tiny space, the new one is more comfortable and the food -- a wide selection of Spanish tapas, sandwiches and entrees -- is as good as it used to be.
When you cross the door of the new space, you'll find a now bigger gourmet market and a main dining room with a tapas bar only slightly larger than the old. The gourmet market has an ample selection of Spanish hams, cheeses, olives, bread and other foods for you to take home.
Across from the entrance, a few steps below the main dining room level, is a vinoteca -
or wine cellar - where Xixón's selection of wines is stocked up along
the walls and in a glass-enclosed cellar at the back of the room. You
can dine there, too -- if you're lucky to secure one of the wine-barrel
tables set up there. I had no such luck on two visits.
More seating is available upstairs in a small, more secluded dining room and outside on a terrace facing Coral Way. And it certainly
doesn't seem like Xixón is having any problems filling up all that
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space. At around 8 p.m. on a Thursday night, there was a wait for a
table. Unfortunately, the restaurant still doesn't take reservations for parties of less than 12. Some things don't change
2101 SW 22nd St., Coral Gables