Exit 1, the Key Biscayne sister of Coral Gables restaurant Route 9 serving "American-style cuisine with Mediterranean and Italian influence," is ready for traffic, having just tapped Reginald Collier as executive chef. Collier beat out some big names, we hear, after he "blew away" owners Jeremy and Paola Goldberg during a trial tasting. Raised in Miami, Collier's grandfather was the chef at the Miracle Mile Cafeteria in Coral Gables for over 35 years.
At 25, Collier became executive chef at Doraku Sushi, becoming the youngest in the Aoki Group of Japanese restaurants. He was there for five years until some diehard customers lured him away to become the executive chef at Noche in the South End of Boston.
Eventually, the Waxy O'Connor's Group brought Collier back to Miami about a year and a half ago to consult on food for their places. Says Jeremy Goldberg, "He is excited to get back into the upscale dining world and is bringing some awesome pent-up ideas with him."
Among those: Mediterranean Mussels with roasted fennel and lemongrass in a sweet Miso broth with grilled bread.