The who: Dominican-born Chef Danny Hernandez (formerly at Caramelo) presides over a menu with Italian, French and Caribbean influences.
The scene: Miami power players (the Estefans have supped here), coiffed Gables socialites and local couples basking in the nautical-meets-French country vibe. Leather chairs, polished chrome fixtures and washed-wood floors keep things relaxed and elegant.
Private dining: A great option in Zielo’s clandestine 20-seat dining room with candle-filled fireplace.
The plates: Generously portioned and brimming with eclectic Mediterranean flavors. Prices are in keeping with the upscale atmosphere: starters $8-$14, pastas and mains $16-$39.
Start off with the tuna tostone (seared ahi tuna and avocado salad on a crispy tostone) or short rib dumplings with yuzu and sesame sauce. Italian elements include pear-filled pasta in blue cheese cream sauce and prawn and pine nut risotto. Grouper is served over smashed sweet plantains with a mustard cream sauce, while corvina with shrimp comes on a bed of asparagus risotto.
Bottom line: A date-friendly Mediterranean boite in the Gables.