Downtown Miami’s latest newcomer, Over Under (151 E Flagler Street), has been three-and-a-half years in the making — well before a worldwide pandemic crippled the restaurant industry, and before local restaurant and bars had to shift business models to accommodate the countywide closing of indoor dining.
The space was slated to debut in late March, but those plans changed due to the stay-at-home orders caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Originally, Over Under was designed to be a cocktail bar with “elevated” bar food with drinks by head bartender Mike Reich and its owner Brian Griffiths — a Broken Shaker alum and former owner of South Miami’s Shelley’s. The space has since shifted temporarily into a laidback takeaway spot serving comfort food with Florida-focused ingredients by chef James McNeal and a variety of frozen cocktails. There are a handful of tables and lawn chairs perched set up outside for those who want to dine onsite, with plans for additional outdoor seating in the future.
The menu is limited (for now) to items like smoked fish dip, a Jamaican jackfruit patty, vegan chili fries, and a burger (offered with the option of vegan and regular beef patties) akin to a high-end Big Mac, which seems to already be getting plenty of buzz on social media. To wash it all back diners can opt for a frozen pina colada or paloma, classic canned beers, a few different types of shots. And to mix things up, every Sunday Over Under offers a different family-sized meal announced through its social media like a fried chicken bucket or this weekend’s vegan TV dinner, with plans to add brunch into the rotation in the near future.
And while Griffiths notes it is challenging to open a bar and restaurant at this uncertain time for the industry, he adds that there are larger issues at the forefront right now for most people, and he’s happy to be a space where the community can come to take their mind off things for a bit.
“If you are having a hard day, it’s kind of nice to go get some peel-and-eat shrimp and a frozen pina colada, and listen to music for a while and have fun and feel like you’re in a safe and secure place,” Griffiths adds. “So in that way we’re excited to have that opportunity to do that for people.“
Over Under is currently open Wednesday to Saturday from noon to 10 p.m., and Sundays from noon to 8 p.m. For contactless ordering, diners can order here.