The Who: Bar Lab’s Elad Zvi and Gabriel Orta and Sydell Group’s Roy Alpert, essentially the team behind popular cocktail bar The Broken Shaker, have collaborated on this new, hip eatery. Chef James Seyba heads up the kitchen.
The Space: The restaurant occupies a 1930s house on the same property as Freehand Miami Beach, the high-end hostel that also houses the Shaker. Designed by Roman & Willams, the space feels like the hospitable hangout of your cool grandmother, replete with patterned wallpaper, antique frames and walls adorned with vintage Israeli photos. A comfortable lounge upstairs is ideal for enjoying one of Bar Lab’s creations. The scene is young and stylish, as if transported from a Wynwood gallery opening.
The Dishes: Eclectic home cooking. “It’s food we like to eat,” Zvi says of the concise menu. Influences range from Israeli food to Latin, Asian and Italian dishes. Prices are hostel-clientele friendly with starters $6-$10 and larger plates $14-$20.
Start with Bubbie’s latkes, three crispy potato pancakes that go well with the miso-tahini kale salad. The house shakshuka, a Middle Eastern baked-egg dish, wears a cloak of red tomato-pepper stew accompanied by toasted slices of Zak the Baker bread dusted with za’atar, a spice mix featuring thyme, sesame seeds and sumac. Larger plates include a vegetarian cast-iron lasagna and a hearty bowl of kimchi fried rice topped with a duck egg. Gabe’s arepa platter is a meal for four that includes housemade arepas, ropa vieja, queso de mano and hogado.
The Bottom Line: The Bar Lab guys have branched out into the food biz with a cozy spot that feels like your cool grandmother’s funky house.