Chef Simon Stojanovic says he poured his heart and soul–and some cash–into Altamare’s now closed Brickell sibling Tikl, but things just didn’t work out. “The momentum wasn’t there,” he told us. Also missing, unfortunately, were the funds to run a successful restaurant on booming Brickell. But Stojanovic’s ok with that and is taking what he calls “a good break” at chef Gabriela Machado’s swish, invitation only Copperbox Culinary Atelier, open Thursday and Saturday with just 24 seats where most recently there have been Michael Schwartz and Jonathan Eismann sightings.
And while he’s enjoying this break, having been working the Altamare grind since 2010, Stojanovic has his eyes on the future and, after running into a restaurateur friend who has restaurants in Boca, is working on something similar to Copperbox, but a little bigger and a little less exclusive.
“Something like a 40-seat restaurant with an open kitchen where there are no walls to the kitchen,” he explains. “Sort of like a supper club where we all hang out in the kitchen, have snacks, wine and BS with the chef and then everyone sits down and has a 7 or 8-course tasting menu. I thought of it while building the kitchen in my house. If you’re late, we don’t wait for you. There’d be a strict cancellation policy and a strict menu. This is what the menu is. If you don’t like it, then tough tits.”
Pretty ballsy for an on the market chef, no? Nah. “It’s high time that chefs stood up for what they believe in instead of bowing down to Jack and Jill Smith who like their steaks like cardboard.”