By Sara Liss
The goods: Bancroft SupperClub is a one-stop shop for all things nightlife – part fine dining restaurant, part upscale nightclub. From about 8-11pm the focus is dinner, with local talent Tim Andriola (of foodie favorite Timo) providing a sophisticated menu of (mostly) organic cuisine. After 11ish the venue shifts to nightclub mode with multi-colored lighting, thumping music courtesy of a live DJ and, yes, a velvet rope.
Ambiance: Diners should be able to steer clear of any doorman rituals and settle into one of the black lacquered tables on the ground floor of this renovated Deco hotel on Collins. The scene is dramatic -the dining room is dominated by a 20-foot runway running down the center of the room, plush leather banquettes and geometric screens lit in purple hues. Be warned - the sound level isn’t exactly geared towards intimate conversation.
The grub: Ingredient-driven global cuisine. The menu focuses on organic and locally-sourced produce and seafood for an eclectic mix of Latin, Italian and Asian-influenced dishes. Prices are aimed at jet-setters with starters averaging $16 and mains $25-$49. There's also a $95 four-course chef's tasting menu that pairs quaffs of Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label with pricey dishes like warm Maine lobster with caviar and foie gras and duck confit.
Dinner starts with a shot glass of warm organic chicken consommé. From there, move on to the Paradise Farms squash blossoms stuffed with ricotta, lightly battered and fried and served over a yellow tomato puree. The flash-broiled burrata is an oozy bowl of rich cheese paired with sweet cherry tomatoes and crusty toasted baguette. Salt and vinegar-crusted diver scallops marry tangy crunch with the silky seafood. When it comes to the mains, it's all about the farms – duck from LaBelle Farms in New York's Hudson Valley, chicken from Belle and Evans (raised antibiotic-free) and a cowboy steak from Brandt Farms, an eco-minded company that raises cattle without hormones and antibiotics.If you're in the mood for seafood go for a whole fish like the grilled branzino bathed in a yuzu vinaigrette or the crispy-skin snapper with roasted tomato and fingerling potatoes.
Verdict: Despite the flashy setting, Bancroft puts substance over style with chef Tim Andriola's admirable menu of eco-minded eats.
Bancroft Supper Club: 1501 Collins Ave, (305) 630-8540. Wednesday-Saturday, 8pm-5am.
Alaskan Halibut and king crab sunomono.