Sunset Juice Café is much more than a place to get cold-pressed and fresh-squeezed juices; it is a bakery and small restaurant offering sandwiches, salads, soup of the day and whole-wheat pastries.
Located at Sunset Harbour Drive and 20th Street in Miami Beach, just off Alton Road, it features lots of windows, terrazzo flooring, a marble counter with a chalkboard behind it and wire baskets filled with fruit on shelves. There is also an outside walk-up coffee window and shaded al fresco seating.
The cheery place using mostly organic ingredients is owned by the Doino family from Rome who runs Rosinella, the oldest Italian restaurant on Lincoln Road (a downtown location closed several months ago).
Tonino Doino (pictured) is the chef here and also designed the space. He trained staff to bake whole-wheat and white ciabatta and focaccia breads (plain and with black olives) that are baked in a gas oven with multiple stone-lined racks.
General manager Peter Saliamonas is from Chicago and moved to South Beach 20 years ago and has managed Rosinella for 18 years, now going back and forth between the two places.
Breakfast is served all day, with organic eggs used to make frittatas with spinach and kale; smoked salmon and asparagus; and zucchini, potato and onion. Or get eggs poached over steamed spinach or eggs Rosinella in tomato sauce topped with strips of fresh mozzarella.
There are also egg sandwiches, whole-wheat vegan croissants made with Earth Balance margarine, and oatmeal with nuts and berries. Other pastries include a whole-wheat eclair enrobed in dark chocolate, mini cannoli and custard-filled fruit tarts.
At lunch, salads such as curry chicken tossed with mixed greens, green apple chunks, nuts, raisins and celery on quinoa and the tricolor tropical with endive, fennel, oranges, olives, almonds, coconut and avocado are popular.
Sandwiches are on focaccia with fillings from prosciutto and fresh mozzarella to grilled vegetables with red peppers and sun-dried tomatoes. Grilled salmon, chicken, or tofu in lemon ginger sauce come on platters with brown rice or quinoa, black beans and vegetables. Juice combos include refreshing pineapple, apple and mint; kale, collards, cucumber, apple and lime; and beet, carrot, apple and ginger.
Smoothies can be a meal or dessert. Try mango, banana, pineapple and orange; or strawberry, vanilla ice cream and maple syrup; or create your own. Add-ons are protein powder, chia or flax seeds and spirulina.
Sunset is a welcome new addition to the neighborhood with quality food and reasonable prices.
Linda Bladholm is a Miami-based food writer.