Palmeiras Beach Club Miami – An Island of Epicurean Delights
A private island, Grove Isle is located off the North Coconut Grove neighborhood of Miami. Once you have crossed the land bridge (aka Fair Isle Street) and down to the end of the island, just before the marina, you will find to the Palmeiras Beach Club and Hotel, -formerly known as Grove Isle Hotel & Spa.
Entering the beach club, it looks very country club-ish, until you pass the Salon Patron –a music lounge serving premium selections of Patron Tequila from exclusive Tequila Patron Barrels, and the Belle Epoque -styled Chef’s Table, the Perrier-Jouet Private Dining Room.
Beyond the bar, lies the main dining room, a white décored room with floor-to-ceiling window glass views of Biscayne Bay. The best seating, however, is outdoors on the natural stone floored patio deck, where, along your amazing vista, you can feel a refreshing breeze off the water.
The Palmeiras Beach Club restaurant is indeed lovely, but we, as well as his devoted fans that follow him, have come for the exquisite haute cuisine of Venezuelan-born chef Alfredo Alvarez.
The nationally-ranked chef trained at Ecole hôtelière de Lausanne in Switzerland, and has managed some of the top restaurants in Miami and New York City, including Sea Salt and Pepper (now Seaspice).
You literally taste the freshness in Chef Alvarez’ elegant cuisine. For the Palmeiras Beach Club, Alvarez purchases his produce from local farms and imports flash frozen fish from directly from Europe, or from Broward County’s North Star Seafood, an independent distributor of fresh seafood.
To start, we were served Grilled Spanish Octopus so tenderized by Salmoriglio, -a tangy Sicilian sauce made with olive oil, herbs, garlic and lemon juice, that you could practically cut with your fork.
Better yet, was our freshly imported Seared Escolar sashimi-style appetizer. This exquisite buttery and succulent fish was dressed with Sriracha Aioli, Pickled Pears, and Lychee with peppery Upland Cress salad and marvelous Ginger Soy dressing. The amazing flavor combination of sweet fruits and tangy spices made this dish unforgettable.
With our starters, we enjoyed a bright coppery glass of Chateau Maime Cotes de Provence Rose, with a floral nose, the taste of red berries and a peppery finish.
For our second course, we were in luck the Risotto of the Day was Lobster with English Peas.
We were equally excited for the arrival of the baked Wild Chilean Sea Bass encrusted with Tarragon Pistou (French version of Pesto). This moist and flaky fish, with melt-in-your-mouth flavor, was served with Asparagus, Snow Peas and Tomato Confit in an aromatic Fennel and Blue Crab Broth served over spicy Couscous.
With our main course, we enjoyed a deep violet red glass of 2013 Chateau Mont-Redon Cotes du Rhone Reserve. The Grenache 80%, Syrah 20% blend offered a fruity nose with mineral notes, the taste of black berries, and well balanced tannins.
We finished our magnificent meal with two delicious desserts. The unique Brie Tiramisu had an excellent rich and buttery flavor. This exceptional deconstructed dessert was elegantly plated with Hazelnut Speculoos (a Belgian cookie spread similar to Nutella), Chocolate sauce and Espresso gel with a side of Coffee Ice Cream.
And, made for chocolate lovers, the Gold Leaf decorated Chocolate Feast – White and Dark Chocolate Ganache on a Valrhona Chocolate crust dressed with Candied Pecans and a scoop of Black Currant Sorbet.
After-dinner, we walked down a short path to a pair of lounging chaises encircling a stone fire pit. Happily satiated and now luxuriating next warm flames with our Illy coffee, we lacked any motivation for leaving our island retreat.
As an epicurean, my general philosophy on life is that it’s about the ‘journey’. However, for gourmands, Palmeiras Beach Club is the destination that will make that journey worthwhile.
Palmeiras Beach Club and Hotel at Grove Isle is located at 4 Grove Isle Dr, Miami, FL 33133. For reservations or more information, visit: palmeirasbeachclub.com