After four decades wooing the tabloid set from London to Las Vegas, Michael Chow has mastered the formula for packing his eateries with diners looking more for a good time than a great meal. It happens every night at Mr. Chow South Beach. Guests are greeted by a team of gorgeous models/hostesses and handed off to white-tuxedoed waiters who are better trained in the art of schmoozing than serving.
The food? Do you really have to ask? It's good. Sometimes even delicious. But really, it's not about that. Mr. Chow's guests are not expected to work very hard or think very much. It is, in fact, nearly impossible to order your own meal. I tried. But the suave salesmen, er, waiters, take care of everything. Fish, chicken, beef? How about lobster? Why not start with a champagne toast? How elegant. How much? If you have to ask ... $28 for a glass of nonvintage Veuve Clicquot ros.
Ambiance: The posh white-on-white dining room, mammoth gold-leaf and Swarovski crystal chandelier and sultry al fresco dining area greet at the swanky W Hotel. If you find yourself at one of the dozen-plus tables that are separated by less than the width of an iPhone, dont sulk, start up a conversation - just be prepared to chat over blasting classic rock tunes.
What Didn’t Work
I understand Madonna loves the place. Brad Pitt is said to favor the chicken satay and Jennifer Lopez the lobster. But I can’t help thinking I’d really just love some good Chinese takeout.
Eva Chow at MR CHOW in W Hotel at 2201 Collins, Miami Beach.