Edge

Grass is an epicurean delight merged with haughty service

If you are a member of the trendier-than-thou crowd (or of you think you are), you’ll feel right at home at the Design District’s newest restaurant-cum-lounge, monosyllable-named spot called Grass.

Once past the muscled bouncers and black velvet ropes guarding the otherwise unassuming entrance (reservations required), the space itself is quite decadent. A grass-thatched, pitched roof covers a central lounge area in the otherwise uncovered space. The larger booths have their own pitched roofs, inspiring a feeling closer to Polynesia than downtown Miami. The tables are of dark woods, lit by candles that fill the space with a yellow glow. The lounge area, filling half the restaurant, has low couches and tables, again of dark wood, while grass grows in planters on some of the tables and on the bar.

My dining companion and I arrived at precisely the time of our reservation and were directed to wait at the bar for our table. We enjoyed a cocktail and waited. Now, some wait for a table is understandable, but to be made to wait 45 minutes past the time of our reservation was not, especially as the restaurant seemed empty and I could see many open tables. In fact, the couple waiting next to us at the bar grew tired and annoyed at the wait, and left.

While we hung around (and waited, and waited), we enjoyed a live DJ spinning ambient house. Grass attempts to be both a restaurant and a lounge, with the kitchen closing at midnight, but the lounge open till three. My companion remarked that this would be a better experience if we had come only to lounge.

The crowd was typical Miami see-and-be-seen; waif-thin models hanging off the arms of too-tanned, potbellied middle-aged men old enough to be their fathers, an assortment of hipsters, well-dressed and groomed; these folks fit in here at Grass as they would at B.E.D., or Nobu, or any of Miami’s uber-trendy hotspot-of-the-moment places. The bartender told me to come for Happy Hour on Fridays from 5 to 8 p.m.

When we were (finally) seated, the menus were presented with small reading lights and four sections: appetizers, salads, ceviches and main courses-all Asian-fusion cuisine. I started off with the Lemongrass Coconut Roast Pumpkin Soup, which was spicy, but the flavors combined were each so subtle that they overwhelmed each other. My companion chose the Merida Ceviche, and here was an outstanding choice. The fish was very fresh, combined in perfect proportion with avocado, red Bermuda onion, and other vegetables. The presentation was colorful and inviting, with crisp wonton-skin crackers.

For our main course, I ordered a Shitake and Edemame Bean Risotto.
This was prepared with truffle oil, and served with a furikake parmesan
waffle placed on top. Here too I questioned the chef’s choice of ingredients. The flavors of the mushrooms and the soybeans were undetectable because of the richness of the truffle oil. As a fan of truffles however, I enjoyed my truffle-flavored risotto.

My companion chose a salmon steak, prepared with a ginger sauce, and served with asparagus. This was delicious-the salmon a generous portion, flaky and moist, with crisp asparagus. Other items on the menu that we wanted to try included Cumin-seared Beef Tenderloin served with Jerusalem artichokes, rostoi potatoes and an Aji panko sauce. Also sounding yummy was a Shitake Ginger Lamb Ossobucco.

The ambience more than made up for any minor culinary disappointment, and I didn’t mind spending the $7 – $15 per appetizer, nor the $15 – $30 per entr

April 8, 2003

Reporters

The Miami Hurricane

Student newspaper at the University of Miami


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

University of Miami tailback/fullback Trayone Gray, a popular fifth-year senior out of Miami Carol C ...

When Mother’s Day came around back in May, Keontra Smith knew it was time to unveil his college comm ...

University of Miami true freshman quarterback Jarren Williams was not at practice on Tuesday morning ...

A six-pack of Canes notes on a Monday: ▪ The Hurricanes, who began the offseason with five highly sk ...

There’s no doubt who the starting quarterback is at the University of Miami. As for those other thre ...

Conquer common back to school challenges with an expert's guide for parents and children. ...

Unique camp supports children whose parents have cancer. ...

New study shows that discriminating against workers with tattoos puts hiring managers at a competiti ...

Bill Clinton convenes the second summit of his CGI Action Network on Post-Disaster Recovery at UM. ...

A UM researcher has determined that children exposed to traumatic events exhibit pains that if left ...

Head coach Mark Richt, all 10 assistant coaches and more than 50 players met with the media at the N ...

The Miami Hurricanes were under the lights at Hard Rock Stadium Saturday, closing out the opening we ...

The University of Miami volleyball program reported for training on Tuesday, officially beginning pr ...

Several members of Miami's highly-rated recruiting class have entered fall camp hungry to prove ...

Two University of Miami Track and Field athletes represented their respective countries at the Europ ...

TMH Twitter
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.