First Look: The Grill at The Setai

The Grill at The Setai.

The goods: Those looking to dine in elegance are in luck, because The Grill at The Setai has reopened, been revamped and is looking to impress diners seeking to enjoy organic dishes in plush seating and quiet nooks perfect for romantic conversation and intimate gatherings with close friends.

Walk in past The Setai’s lobby bar and into a dining wonderland complete with floor to ceiling glass wine cellars, dark wood tables, dim lights and views of The Courtyard, where you can peek at those sipping Pinot by the hotel’s signature center fountain. At the restaurant, those looking to take their dining experience up a notch can round up their private party of up to eight people and reserve a table inside one of the wine cellars and feast on Executive Chef Jonathan Wright’s “meant to share dishes” while sipping bubbly and rare wines.

The grub: Chef Wright handpicked organic farms – such as Four Storey Hill Farms and Niman Ranch – from around the world to prepare simple yet delectably prepared dishes meant to nibble on in a group. Not a fan of menus that keep their cooking methods a secret? Then you’re in luck, because The Grill is set up so that you pick your choice of protein and then specify how you’d like it cooked.

Start your meal with some top-notch choices from the raw bar, such as Alaskan king crab legs (about $33 per pound) or oven-roasted tomatoes with buffalo mozarella drizzled with olive oil and a dash of basil (about $16). Pick from main dishes such as a 14-ounce New York strip or Alaskan halibut. Veggie dishes more your style? Make sure to tell the server so he can give you a run-down of their picks. Make one of your choices the pumpkin soup, a fixed menu staple. Don’t forget to finish up your meal with a taste of their Madagascan vanilla créme brûlée, crack the crunchy sugary goodness and sink your spoon into a warm vanilla cream dessert.

Have no fear if the recession has your wallet running on empty: The Grill is currently offering a $55 pre-fixed menu offering five options for each of the three courses. Come in early and enjoy $10 valet parking, champagne, antipasto bites and freshly baked breads before your meal and take your time to pick and choose what wine to have with dinner.

The verdict: The Grill is dressed to impress with a rustic vibe that offers elegantly casual fare perfectly prepped for a special night out in a soothing enviroment.

The Grill at The Setai; 2001 Collins Ave., Miami Beach; 305-520-6800

Published: 12/08

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