Miami-local and Top Chef New Orleans contestant, Bret Pelaggi, is opening up a restaurant called Uvaggio (Italian for grape blend) on Miracle Mile in Coral Gables (and soon!). Pelaggi is partnering up with Heath Porter, former wine director at the W in Hawaii, and owner Craig DeWald to launch the new restaurant/wine bar sometime in the coming weeks (slated for the first few days of February).
According to the chef, Uvaggio boasts various hard to find, high-end wines in a casual atmosphere designed around the classic European-style wine bar, sans the "stuffy wine snob feel." "The menu and wines were designed cohesively, not in the traditional manner of developing a menu then picking some wines that would go ok with that food," says Pelaggi, "we picked some unique boutique small production vineyards smelled, tasted and wrote down any and all scents, flavors and textures that came to mind. With that information a menu was conceived with all the things we had just smelled and tasted in mind, we called it 'tasting backwards.'" Menu highlights include short rib with black licorice tea consommé and black olive soil, terrine of pork rillette with dill seed and black mustard and octopus "naranja agria" with Spanish paprika and jicama. Stay tuned for opening dates.