Ola Miami, 1745 James Avenue, Miami Beach, Florida 33139
When you walk into Ola Miami, it’s as if you stumbled onto the best party in town. A lot of locals call this hot spot one of Miami’s rare, hidden gems. I went last Friday and the scene was incredibly vibrant, the energy electric and the food? It keeps getting better with time and frankly, who wouldn’t drink to that!? So…
I started the night by tasting three of Ola’s yummiest martini’s: a sweet coconut concoction rimmed with sugar; a clean cucumber number and, last but not least, my favorite: “The Devil’s Garden,” made with cucumber vodka, fresh watermelon juice and homemade Aji Limo syrup. It’s simply amaze-ballz! For me, there’s nothing sexier than a pretty drink when you’re enjoying a night out on the town.
Even though the Latin American-inspired eatery, which is a fusion of Spanish, Pan Latin, and Caribbean flavors, is a Magic City staple (it’s been in business for over eleven years,) it continues recreating itself and is still one of the best places to eat in town. The Ceviches are phenomenal and an absolute must-try on the menu.
The Fluke (with fresh Meyer lemon, chives and basil) is zesty, clean and fresh. The Wahoo is really wonderful (with watermelon jalapeño juice, basil, diced cantaloupe, red onions and cucumber sorbet,) but it’s the Mixto that’s absolutely marrrrvvvvvvelous with shrimp, octopus and cobia (in lime, orange juice, limo pepper, cilantro, Kalamata olives, served with a side of fried yuccas.) I could eat that seafood mix everyday for the rest of my life. How do you top that?
With enough Tapas for a small army, that’s how! The kitchen sent out a feast of Kobe meatballs (with foie-gras sherry sauce, black trumpet chimi and crispy shallot,) crispy Rock Shrimp (coated with rice and corn flour with a sweet and spicy panka sauce and cilantro) and two types of empanadas; Corn (served over mushroom salad with huitlacoche and sweet corn sauce) and Short Rib (with creamy habanero sauce and smoked orange rosemary marmalade.) Both were the perfect blend of puffy, fried dough filled with gooey goodness.
Finally, I was DYING to try Ola’s campy dessert that looks like a cigar and matches. It’s an almond chocolate cake enrobed in semisweet chocolate mousse with coffee ice cream and a candy matchbox. After that, it was sweet empanadas for everyone! If you’re looking for a lively night, with amazing food and a great atmosphere, this should be high-up on your fashionable foodie list and that’s why it’s one of my favorite things.
(A special thank you to Brian Lieberman for always being so generous and affable toward the press! It’s very much appreciated.)
Ola is located inside the Sanctuary Hotel on South Beach, just a hop, skip and a jump away from Collins Avenue. The Art Deco boutique hotel has long been a hang-out for the fun and fabulous crowd of Miami. It’s also a big hit with tourists, who love its intimate, cozy feel. Parking is really tight in this particular area of the beach, but there’s a valet right in front of the building for restaurant customers.
Monday-Sunday 6:30pm – 11:00pm
Editor: Matthew Auerbach
Producer: Jessie Rosario
Writer: Shireen Sandoval
Photographer: James Woodley