Though coveting thy neighbor's wife or underground sprinkler system is beyond the pale, longing for a mouthful of their cuisine is an understandable desire. Today's Groupon satisfies desires to eat from the table of our neighboring nations: for $20, you get $40 worth of genre-busting Latin cuisine and drinks at your pick of one of Miami's three Douglas Rodriguez–helmed restaurants. Rodriguez, a contestant on Bravo's Top Chef Masters and a James Beard Award winner, is considered a godfather of Latino cuisine and the inventor of the phrases "Nuevo Latino" and "BFF." Choose from his following three gastroparks:
D. Rodriguez Cuba: Start the evening at this Miami Beach cooltown with tapas such as plantain-crusted mahi mahi with smoked red onions and chipotle mayo ($12), crab and lemon empanaditas ($12), or seared octopus in olive oil and garlic ($13). Some of his famous ceviches include the lobster variety with mango and black tapioca pears ($21) or the shrimp campechiano with avocado and roasted tomato sauce ($15). If you never learned to share, hoard your own yuca-crust pizza with duck and foie gras ($17), flash roasted, crispy-skin Cuban pork ($26), or yuca stuffed with mushrooms sided with green apple chayote slaw ($19). Lounge among the Jurassic Park thick foliage of the outdoor patio or sink into the bright crème palates of the luxurious interior.
OLA Restaurant: Mere back-flips from some of South Beach's glitteriest resorts, OLA emphasizes the services of its encyclopedic sommelier and Rodriguez's tongue-stunning cuisine. Notoriously seductive ceviches include the Ecuadorian shrimp with roasted tomatoes ($16) and the rainbow with tuna, salmon, sweet potato, and cilantro ($16). Other mini munchables include rock shrimp in a sweet and spicy panca sauce ($17) and the "mystery" meatballs in mushroom sauce ($18). A plantain-crusted mahi with braised oxtail stew ($29) and churrasco ($35) are among a cadre of broad-shouldered mains. The restaurant's wine list includes star taste-bud homerun hitters like the Glen Carlou chardonnay from South Africa and Chile's 20 Barrels pinot noir. The rooftop opens up for private parties and large groups.
Ocean Restaurant & Lounge: Nothing is yet known about Rodriguez's top-secret new joint, other than that it is located in the Bentley Hilton Hotel at 101 Ocean Drive (across from Prime 112) and plans to drop a glitz bomb on the local cuisine scene. This new hall of otherworldly eatsperiences, however, is only visible to those who have unobstructed views of the future.
This deal is not valid for prix fixe menus, during Miami Spice, or with Sangria Sundays. Reservations are required on Fridays and Saturdays.
- Excellent food and terrific service. Whole red snapper is a must! Best meal we had during our 4 day trip to Miami - sad we found it on our last night or we would have gone back! – An OpenTable.com user who dined on 07/16/2010
- The ambiance was fantastic. We ate outside in the courtyard. It had beautiful lanterns in the trees, which I really liked. It was romantic for a couple, but it could also be a great dining experience for friends… – Olisa A., Yelp
OLA boasts high Zagat ratings and holds a spot on Zagat Miami's Food Tops, Hotel Dining Tops, Latin American Tops, and Service Tops lists. More than 80 Yelpers give it an average of 4.5 stars, TripAdvisors average four owl eyes, and 82% of Urbanspooners recommend it.
- Even “locals feel like they’re on vacation” at toque Douglas Rodriguez’s “fantastic” “find” in South Beach’s Sanctuary Hotel, where the “modern” mood mirrors the “innovative, playful Pan-Latin” fare (particularly the “spectacular ceviche”) – Zagat
- Stiff drinks. Awesome ceviches. Great desserts. I'm a fan. – Vivian L., Yelp