Going back to Cali? Hmm, I don’t think so.
The talented team behind cult-favorite La Fresa Francesa, chef Benoit Rablat and Sandy Sanchez, gifts South Florida another gem: Silverlake Bistro. Knowing their history, I knew I’d probably be in for a treat. Several visits later I confirmed this restaurant also demands our full attention.
Located in Normandy Isles, a northern area on Miami Beach that continues to revitalize and reinvent itself, the Cali-bohemian vibe was hard to miss from my very first step inside the space. Throughout its understated and intimate decor, I noticed the unmistakable touch of passionate owner Sandy everywhere I looked: custom designed “foxy” wallpaper, personal knick-knacks displayed on golden shelving units, vinyl record covers hung in the most unexpected place, books, and framed photographs. And then those gorgeous signature plates…
Inspired by their time together on the west coast, the one thing to know at Silverlake is simple: if chef Benoit created it, you want it. End of story.
What I’ve tried:
Highlights: I cannot imagine not ordering the Gnocchi Mac & Cheese (maybe even a double order), the Mini St. Helena Grilled Cheese (for days), and the Roasted Chicken (oh my!) with every visit. Do not even get me started on the Butterscotch Pot de Crème! I will never share mine. Not happening.
The vegetarian sides and entree options, however, demand equal attention. Revealed further with each bite, the Baby Carrots (with honey, pistachios, espelette, fennel pollen, and basil whipped ricotta), Pan Fried Okra (chili flakes, parmesan, lemon zest), and the Roasted Cauliflower main (Le Puy lentils, labneh, and a fried egg) dig deep on flavor.
Expect simply presented American classics and quality ingredients always to take center stage. Since its quiet fall opening, the menu has grown and evolved steadily. Up ahead in the distance? Brunch! To drink, a reasonably priced, sommelier-curated
pink champagne on ice wine and craft beer list is available. Corkage fee is set at $25 for those wishing to bring in their own wine.
As with every new business, navigating and establishing an entirely new restaurant concept has required tenacity and vision. Thankfully, the talented pair seem to gracefully navigate any growing pains thrown their way, using good vibrations, and an unusual free-spirited discipline only they can manage.
Selfishly speaking, I fear this newcomer’s underground feel might fade quickly as word spreads like wildfire. But then again, I can’t help but brag about Silverlake Bistro as if it was my own. I can’t make up my mind, but here I am, and now you know. Any time of year, you can find it here. Gather for a feast and get to it.
1211 71st St
Miami Beach, FL 33141