Owner/Operator Michael Sullivan and Executive Chef Tomas Prado will host a special Grand Opening Preview Dinner on Saturday, July 25 in preparation for the official restaurant opening on Monday, July 27, 2015. Invited friends, family and industry elite will get a first taste of Chef Tomas Prado’s anticipated farmhouse cuisine this Saturday while they meet, mingle and toast complimentary Champagne with the dedicated twosome. Uninvited diners chomping at the bits to experience the new eatery can try their luck at snagging a table between their 6 p.m. and 11 p.m. dinner service, as Sullivan promises to keep seats open for walk-ins. Those who do not get in Saturday need not fret, as the restaurant will officially open to the public on Monday, July 27 at 6 p.m.
“We are absolutely elated to finally see our hard work come to fruition,” explains Sullivan. “Tomas and I decided to invite friends in for dinner before we officially open – to show off our accomplishments, and thank them for supporting us in the interim, but we also want to share the experience with the neighborhood, so we opened up some seats and made the celebration accessible to anyone.”
Named after Florida’s native Golden Fig tree, the restaurant’s concept is built on the notion of collaborating with small local farms growing ingredients indigenous to the region and displaying them for guests in a delicious and wholesome manner. “This is a concept I’ve dreamed of doing for a long time,” states Sullivan. “We want to help enrich the food culture in Miami by evoking passion, encouraging integrity and sharing knowledge. We want to help raise industry standards – to make sustainable practices and high-quality dishes more accessible. And we’re ecstatic to have Tomas at the helm. Our passion and vision are closely aligned and his talent and experience create a strong foundation for our concept.”
Boasting a proud pedigree consisting of impressive stints at revered eateries such as The Bazaar by Jose Andres, DB Bistro Moderne, Café Boulud, and most recently as part of the corporate team at My Ceviche, Executive Chef Tomas Prado certainly knows his way around quality ingredients, diverse dishes and expert execution, and is proud to now put forth a menu all his own. The moderately priced, frequently rotating collection of fun, hand-crafted, made-in-house snacks; light and artful starters; uber fresh, impeccably prepared local and in-season vegetable dishes; craveable pasture-raised meat and seafood entrees; housemade and well-sourced charcuterie and cheese boards; and artful desserts is sure to please the most discerning of palates.
Snacks ($3-$8), such as thick chunks of perfectly Crispy Pork Belly hailing from Cox Farms in Kentucky and served with a healthy dollop of tangy housemade IPA Mustard; along with fresh East Coast Oysters from Bodie Island, North Carolina, served with mignonette and cocktail sauce; and Virginia Ham Croquettes from Edwards farm in Virginia; begin the meal in style, along with charcuterie Boards ($6) featuring an array of fine cheeses and meats including Housemade Lardo with pork from Pasture Prime in Florida and Housemade Duck Prosciutto with fowl from Hudson Valley in New York.
Working well as shareables, Starters ($10-$15) include clean, light fare such asAtlantic Tuna Tartar – pristine pieces of cold, extremely fresh rare tuna tossed in preserved lemon and saffron aioli with shaved house-cured egg yolk on top and crispy freshly fried potato chips on the side; an exquisite Hudson Valley Foie Gras Parfait – mousse-like foie layered with spiced mango compote and served with rustic toast from Zak the Baker (ZTB); a Farmers Salad, also from Homestead, showcases shaved market vegetables, citrus, fine herbs and lemon vinaigrette; and Maine Mussels, steamed in Florida Cracker Beer with orange, cilantro and pickled fresno.
Mains ($15-$25) boast heartier dishes such as Black Grouper Brochette – skewered, fresh from the Florida Keys, grouper over Saffron couscous with seasonal vegetables and caper chimichurri; Southeast Family Farms Smoked Pork Porterhouse atop creamy potato puree and topped with a parsley and apple salad and roasted apples; crispy Buttermilk Fried Chicken from Joyce Farms in North Carolina, served on a heap of grilled collard greens with bacon, pickled okra and hot sauce; a juicy Grass Fed Burger, also from Joyce Farms, topped with aged cheddar, housemade pickles, caramelized onions, and house golden sauce; Portland, MainePan Seared Scallops served with chunks of pork belly and a corn succotash with fava beans, tomato, okra and basil; and Steak Frites – perfectly pan-seared, pre-sliced Flat-iron steak from Cox Farms, Kentucky, served alongside bistro fries and béarnaise butter.
Market Vegetables ($7-$10) are a vegetarian’s dream with rich Oyster Mushroomsfrom Signature Farms, Florida, served in a small cast iron pan with Sherry vinegar, fine herbs and a dab of smoked cheddar; a hearty Vegetable Stir-Fry – quinoa, zucchini, squash, and bean sprouts, all from Homestead, Florida, sautéed in soy sauce; and the flavorful Crispy Calabaza Blossoms from Paradise Farms – delicate flowers stuffed with chunky ratatouille, then fried and served atop a smoky romesco sauce and finished with lemon zest.
Desserts ($9) are a must with Prado’s take on American classics such as the Sundae– chocolate stout, cinnamon and malted milk ice creams, ginger snaps and salted caramel; Key Lime Jar – graham cracker crumble and meringue; Organic Peach Cobbler – Oat Crumble and cinnamon ice cream and the S ‘mores Jar – Chocolate mousse, torched marshmallow and graham cracker.
A complete resurgence of the popular gastropub that once took its place, the 1,500 square foot, 55-seat, indoor/outdoor Golden Fig is casual and rustic, albeit sophisticated, farmhouse restaurant. To help recreate the look, Sullivan tapped local artists Cynno of Wynwood Sign Painting and wood worker Scott Handler. The latter’s work is seen right away at the entrance and outdoor patio which is flanked with tall artisan-crafted Florida wood planters full of fresh green plants, herbs and flowers that create a refuge from the bustling South Miami Avenue. The interior is awash with clean white walls, neutral earth tones and various textures and colors of wood. Hanging tear drop terrariums dress a brick accent wall above the intimate dark wooden bar, lined with a handful of white bar stools. A small foyer with cushioned benches sits in front of the bar and faces the blue kitchen door behind it. Above, Cynno’s moss graffiti mural of the words Golden Fig adorns the wall. The long rectangular dining room boasts high-vaulted exposed ceilings with hanging wrought iron and Edison bulb chandeliers that aptly light a floor-to-ceiling grass wall along the back, along with the small open kitchen on one side, and sectioned walls on the other. Two more murals from Cynno pay homage to the restaurant’s name and concept along the sectioned wall: one, a beautiful rendition of the golden fig logo made with stenciled gold flaked paint. The other, a second moss design of the state of Florida, highlighting the restaurant’s farming partners. Wooden tables with white metal chairs fill the tiled floor and a gorgeous Scott Handler hand-crafted communal table, seating 12, provides the perfect vantage to see the action in the kitchen.
Golden Fig will launch with dinner service only, with plans to add lunch, weekend brunch and Happy Hour in the near future.
Golden Fig, opening Monday, July 27 at 1250 South Miami Avenue in the Brickell neighborhood of downtown Miami, will be open from 6:00pm -10:00pm, Monday-Thursday, and 6:00pm-11:00pm, Friday and Saturday. Reservations will NOT be accepted for Saturday but are accepted starting Monday. Telephone: 305-374-4612.