Shireen’s Spotlight: Café Roval

Shireen’s Spotlight: Cafe Roval

Shireen’s Spotlight: Cafe Roval

Shireen’s Spotlight: Cafe Roval

Shireen’s Spotlight: Cafe Roval

Shireen’s Spotlight: Cafe Roval

Shireen’s Spotlight: Cafe Roval

Shireen’s Spotlight: Cafe Roval

Shireen’s Spotlight: Cafe Roval

What:

Sunday brunch at Café Roval, one of the most enchanting restaurants in South Florida — and perfect for a Mother’s Day celebration.

Why:

Captivating & beautiful: Café Roval is one of the most magical and romantic restaurants I’ve seen in a long time.

When I first walked into its beautiful back garden (which is how you enter the eatery,) I was completely blown away.

Was I really still in Miami and what did this beguiling building used to be? I’ll get to that in a minute, but first…

Café Roval’s outside patio easily spills into a massive ode to Mother Nature with a pretty pond, a wide scenic pathway and eye-popping palm trees lining the property.

I especially love the dining tables speckled throughout the garden, offering up a real sense of intimacy (which is hard to find in a big city restaurant.)

Inside, the greenery gives way to dark wood, moody lighting and interesting artwork. Even the bar has its own awe-inspiring personality, suggesting its just stepped out of the pages of a fancy magazine like, say, Architectural Digest.

The walls, which are made out of a blanched coral-rock, hint at the building’s rustic beginnings. Originally built in the 20’s, it served as a pump house, providing fresh water to what’s now known as MIMO.

Over the years, it’s been turned into a bit of everything: a private home, a vagabond hang-out and a beauty salon.

Now, thanks to the keen eye of prominent restaurateur, Mark Soyka (yes, of Soyka Restaurant fame, which is in the same area,) Café Roval is one of Miami’s newest hot spots; one I’ve been dying to try. With that said…

I started Spotlight with a gorgeous craft of crisp & delicious “White Sangria” made with a medley of fresh fruit. It was the perfect accoutrement to go along with the sparkling weather.

BTW…Café Roval doesn’t serve hard liquor, but you’d never know it by their craft cocktails, which are wine-based.

The “Shrub Fizz” is the perfect example, made with house-made shrub, Mionetto Prosecco and your choice of one of the following: fig cinnamon, strawberry balsamic, celery, raspberry, blueberry or blackberry.

I went with the raspberry (which came with the slightest speckling of brown sugar.) This drink is definitely garden-party worthy and the fizziness was fabulous.

I was also curious about…”It Became Bloody Mary” without the vodka (with cilantro, radish, lime, tabasco, smoke agave reduction, house-made tomato juice,) it gets an A+ for originality (they also serve beer and sake.)

If you’re a sucker for a good “Eggs Benedict”, the “Lobster” will NOT disappoint (made with local eggs, watercress, asparagus and lemon hollandaise.) This plate wasn’t just pretty, it was beyond pleasing to the palette and hands-down my favorite. Until I tasted the “Short Rib Grilled Cheese”…. Yum!

My photographer, James, fawned over it, too. A generous helping of short rib is served on thick country toast with smoked cheddar, field greens and balsamic fig dressing.

Just writing about it makes me wanna run back to the restaurant to order one for the memory and another for the road. Lol. Yeah, it’s THAT good.

My stylist, Jackie, was smitten with the deliciously decadent “Tres Leches Pancakes” (garnished with pecans, caramel and tres leches sauce.) Also on the sweet side, “Roval French Toast” (made with Brioche, fresh berries, caramel, sea salt butter and pure maple syrup.) You can add applewood bacon or artisanal breakfast sausage.

Although I didn’t taste the “Heirloom Tomato” salad (made with feta, basil and fig balsamic vinaigrette,) it was too gorgeous to not take a photo. In fact, everything about Café Roval is gorgeous. It’s all photo-worthy so, if you have good social media game, you’re gonna go crazy with your camera.

Brunching at Café Roval is such a special experience, from the breathtaking scenery to the incredible food, you won’t be disappointed and that’s why it’s one of my favorite things.

Where:

Café Roval
5808 NE 4th Ct.
Miami, FL. 33137

(There’s Valet on property and street parking, too.)

When:

Monday & Tuesday: 5pm-10pm
Wednesday-Saturday: 5pm-12am
Sunday Brunch: 11am-3pm & Dinner: 5-10pm

Be Social:
IG: @caferoval
FB: @caferoval
Twitter: @caferoval

Make a reservation:
www.caferoval.com
786-953-7850

Wine is sunlight, held together by water.Galileo Galilei
James Woodley Photography
Styling & Producer Assist: Jackie Kay
Wardrobe & Accessories: www.Vchicstore.com
Hair & Make-up: Odett Hernandez
Digital Editor: Jessie Neft-Swinger
Editor: Matthew “Gorgeous” Auerbach

Shireen’s Spotlight: Phuc Yea

Shireen’s Spotlight: Phuc Yea

Shireen’s Spotlight: Phuc Yea

Shireen’s Spotlight: Phuc Yea

Shireen’s Spotlight: Phuc Yea

Shireen’s Spotlight: Phuc Yea

Shireen’s Spotlight: Phuc Yea

Shireen’s Spotlight: Phuc Yea

What:

A yummy Sunday night dinner at one of the hottest new restaurants in Miami — “Phuc Yea.”

Why:

There are so many reason to love “Phuc Yea” – let’s start with the obvious – its naughty name!

Everyone I talk to loves saying the name out loud — as if I’m lost on the double entendre or something? The cuisine, which is Vietnamese peppered with Cajun personality, is unique and like nothing I’ve ever tasted. The eatery, which is housed inside an old Art Deco hotel, is now re-purposed into one of Miami’s newest “see and be seen” hot spots. Wait, there’s more…

The airy lobby is adorned with a working raw/sushi bar and offers casual seating. The main dining room, which boasts a big bar at its center, is an interesting swirl of textured art and graffitied serial numbers (each having a sentimental meaning to its owners, Aniece Meinhold and Cesar Zapata) and the glowing Lantern Garden, which serves up specialty cocktails and snacks, has this really cool, laid-back party vibe.

If all those aforementioned reasons aren’t enough…

I started spotlight with two signature drinks: “Hip Hop Sour Sop” (made with Bacardi, soursop, thai basil and lime) & “Saigon Tea Bag” (with rum, dojo chai tea, bobba pearls, carrot and condensed milk). Both were big on presentation. I loved the sweet and sour taste of the soursop, but who can resist slurping up bubba pearls? Not me.

The “Green Papaya Salad” – which I fell in love with – was my first starter. What a breath of fresh air; clean and light (served with crispy shallots, dried shrimp, carrots and peanuts, served in a yummy Vietnamese dressing.) I also tried the “Summer Roll” (made with pork, shrimp, cucumber, herbage and wrapped in rice noodles.) My photographer, James, said the ingredients were perfectly paired. In fact, he barely let me have a bite. Smh.

The next two drinks I sipped on: “Luv Me Laung Time” (tasted like smokey pineapple) and “Vietnami Ani” named after owner, Aniece (was a mix of hibiscus and rose water.) Soon after, the “Spicy Beef Noodles” arrived. Hello, lover…

They were AMAZE and my favorite dish of the night, made with peppercorn-rubbed strip loin, clear noodles, mushroom, herbage and served in a ginger soy vinaigrette. Spicing dinner up (even more) was easy, after Cesar dropped off a taste of their special hot sauce called: “Hot As Phuc”.

Oh, sweet baby Jesus! I love me some hot sauce, but this made my toes curl and hair sprout on my knuckles! So, I did what any normal hot sauce lover would do — have more!

Luckily, the “Fish Curry”, which came in a big pot, distracted me. It was filled with all kinds of seafood surprises; besides the fish of the day, I loved the jumbo prawns they included and the curry was spot-on taste wise.

For dessert, the most decadent “Chocolate Croissant Bread Pudding” (with condensed milk, topped with shaved coconut) was delivered to the table. It was EVERYTHING; layered with ooey-gooey goodness. What an amazing way to end dinner and yes, it was completely devoured.

Food legend has it that about six years ago, “Phuc Yea” was one of Miami’s first pop-up restaurants, but that’s ancient history; I’m more interested in the here and now. With that being said, this place is permanent and with its provocative food and intriguing setting, I’m sure it’ll be around for a long time to come and that’s why it’s one of my favorite things.

When:

Happy Hour 5pm-7pm
Tuesday-Wednesday: Dinner 6pm-10pm
Thursday, Friday, Saturday: Dinner 6pm-12am
Sunday Brunch: 11:30am-3:30pm & Dinner 6pm-9pm

Where:

Phuc Yea
7100 Biscayne Blvd
Miami, Florida 33138

Right in the heart of MIMO on the west side of Biscayne Boulevard. There’s a roomy parking lot in the back of the restaurant with a $5 valet in the evening.

www.phucyea.com
IG: @phucyea
FB: Phuc Yea
Twitter: @phucYEA

Delivery available: GRUBHUB, EAT24 or UberEats

When eating a fruit, think of the person who planted the tree.Vietnamese Proverb
Photographer: James Woodley www.JamesWoodleyPhotography.com
Wardrobe styling: Jackie Kay
Shirt & Skirt by Ted Baker
Grooming: Odett Hernandez
Digital Editor: Jessie Neft-Swinger
Editor: Matthew “Bubba Pearl” Auerbach