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Barceloneta's Winning Formula; 3.5 Stars for Tuyo

Lee Klein visit's Pubbelly's second sibling, Barceloneta, about which he says "Judging from our experiences, as well as from the consistently crowded room, it looks like the talented trio has hit the trifecta." He also notes that "The cuisine here is worlds apart from the other spots' Asian fare, but it shares important traits: creativity, tremendous flavor, and — key to the team's success — value." Barceloneta can also win an Oscar, Klein says. "Like a great actor, Barceloneta doesn't strain for authenticity but reflects real Spanish cuisine through its own perspective." Value is definitely a running theme throughout Klein's review. The food's good too. "The most arresting plate of food we sampled involves a radical, Ferran Adrià-like reworking of the tapas combo of octopus, potatoes, and paprika." Klein hopes that with the Pubbelly gang's fourth installation, Macchialina Taverna Rustica, "The formula, we can only hope, will remain the same." [MNT]

This week, VPE reviews Tuyo, the restaurant at Miami Dade College's Culinary Institute that she says "is surprising in its quirky elegance and breathtaking in its panoramic views," where Norman Van Aken "is combining nostalgic plates from his early days such as Curaçao and foie gras-topped brioche French toast with Asian-inspired simplicity such as local cobia ceviche with papaya and pickled cucumbers." What worked: a lot, including "A Joel Robuchon tuna tartare," "enticing conch chowder," "Perfectly pan-seared yellowtail snapper fillet," "Precisely cooked beef duo of strip steak and short rib," and "insanely good hot donuts." What didn't? A few sauces, "uninspiring, overworked pompano," "A waiter who lacked a grasp of both English and the menu," among a few other things. Didn't matter. Bottom line: 3.5 stars. []


1418 20th Street, Miami Beach, FL 33139 Visit Website


820 Alton Road, , FL 33139 (305) 534-2124 Visit Website