By Dr. Mary Jo Almeida Shore
Since its opening in mid July, Eastern Mediterranean restaurant Byblos has become a Mecca for diners seeking an elegant, unique and outstanding dining experience. Most noteworthy is the attention to detail that is prevalent throughout the entire Byblos experience- from the attentive staff (Arturo spoiled us) to the beautiful and eclectic, traditional one-of plates and silverware to the rituals, such as the French press service- served in antique tea cups; table side spirit infused cold tea trolley and the desserts which are served atop a silver platter.
Everything at Byblos is done intentionally. Which brings us to the menu, comprised of unique dishes which are carefully crafted through the use of time-honored cooking techniques using bold flavors and spices hailing from the Eastern Mediterranean. Executive Chef Stuart Cameron (Nao, Weslodge and Patria), who explored the Eastern Mediterranean coast and immersed himself in its flavors, explains, “The food is authentic yet distinct. We are building on the essence of the tradition, letting it guide us as we create new methods and develop our unique interpretation to Eastern Mediterranean cuisine.”
In keeping with Levantine culture, dinner is served family style, beginning with mezze (small plates), with larger dishes following. The steak was our favorite but don’t rule out the lamb, duck, octopus or selection of fresh fish. There are numerous offerings for vegetarians, including the Black Truffle Pide (Buffalo Mozzarella, Halloumi, Tartufata) which is perfection on a plate. Two other favorites are Byblos’ a la minute rice dishes: the Sweet Jeweled Rice, with too many ingredients to list and the Persian Shrimp Fried Rice. Barberi, a delicious Turkish bread cooked in a stone oven and served fresh with organic house made Lebnah, and the thrice fried truffle fries are also “musts.”
After its sweeping success in Toronto, it’s not surprising that Byblos is enjoying parallel success within the Miami culinary scene by offering diners vibrant and exciting flavors in a gorgeous, convivial setting with top-notch service. The Byblos experience is designed to stimulate and heighten the senses. Byblos is located at 1545 Collins Avenue adjacent to The Royal Palm South Beach Miami. “We take great inspiration from the different culinary regions we explore; immersing ourselves entirely” says Icon Legacy CEO Hanif Harji. “Our ambition is to know a place so well that we have the freedom to interpret the experience; presenting it in a way that we hope our guests will enjoy as much as we do.”
Byblos is open seven days a week from 6 p.m. to close. For more information please visit www.byblosmiami.com. For reservations and booking inquires please email firstname.lastname@example.org.