The who: Miami native Michael Shikany, who has worked front- and back-of-house restaurant jobs in Miami and New York, has an ambitious new restaurant with a cocktail garden and a test kitchen to host culinary workshops.
The space: A 4,000-square-foot converted warehouse around the corner from Panther Coffee’s Wynwood flagship. The space is swanky while still retaining its industrial charm. Polished concrete floors play off beige wood tables and chairs, while a geometrical honeycomb-like wall pattern adds depth.
Shikany and his team can be seen plating dishes from an open kitchen, and the dining room features a 24-seat communal table where a tasting menu is offered Thursday-Saturday.
The dishes: Creative American. Expect whimsy like clementine syrup in mini tubes and plates accented with vanilla cotton candy trees.
Diners get treated to a fancy amuse bouche like a taste of of rock shrimp, soy caviar and mushroom with a plastic syringe of white balsamic. Starters include kampachi sashimi and maple foie gras with black truffle caviar, cilantro, yuzu, crispy daikon and clementine. Wagyu tenderloin tartare is a brick of diced beef mixed with cayenne apple chutney, pickled mung bean, red onion relish and chile oil powder.
Scallop and sweetbreads is a sculptural dish adorned with lemongrass buerre blanc and cotton candy. Housemade tagliatelle pasta is tossed with asparagus, mushrooms and St. Andre cheese sauce.
Pastry chef Jill Montinola ends meals with desserts like a pineapple cremeux with Thai basil ice cream, and a plate that explores different textures of chocolate.
The bottom line: A polished Wynwood spot with more than a little whimsy that will appeal to culinary sophisticates and those looking for something new.