Reporting Lisa Petrillo
MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Grab a friend and your appetite for another one of South Florida’s mouth-watering restaurant promotion events but this year, foodies all over South Florida will have to choose from a new double dining deal for the annual Miami Spice Restaurant Program.
In its 11th year, the Miami Spice program is getting a new look with two levels of fixed-price menus. Restaurants fall into either a luxury or fine-dining category designed to offer Miami Spice fans with more diverse and wide-ranging dining options.
Luxury restaurants are offering three-course prix-fixe lunches for $23 per person and dinner runs $39 per person which is up slightly over last year.
Fine dining restaurants feature lunch menus at $19 and $33 for dinner.
CBS4′S Lisa Petrillo tried one of the luxurious restaurants on the first day of Miami Spice.
Sweeping water views of the Miami skyline set the stage for an exceptional dining experience at Area 31, located on the 16th floor of the Epic Hotel in downtown Miami.
The restaurant is named after the international fishing area called Area 31, so naturally it specializes in sustainable seafood along with coastal ingredients.
For his Miami spice menu, Executive Chef Michael Reidt fills it with his seafood specialties and some other surprises.
“Area 31 is known for seafood but we also have eclectic items unique combinations as well,” said Chef Reidt. “We are really excited about the menu we offered.”
Petrillo sampled a corvina and squid ceviche with quinoa and spicy papaya sauce that she described as the “perfect summer appetizer or meal,” as well as seafood platter and a dessert which included a vanilla custard with coconut topped with a frozen chocolate. “Amazing” said Petrillo after enjoying the sweet treat.
All Miami Spice menus include an appetizer, entrée and dessert as part of the fixed price, which excludes tax and gratuities.
“Our 2012 revitalized Miami Spice program embraces the city’s ever-growing culinary scene,” says William D. Talbert III, CDME, president and CEO of the GMCVB. “The expanded program gives Miami diners more options and more opportunities to savor the region’s great restaurants.”
Last year more than 140 restaurants participated; with the new price category, that total is expected to reach closer to 180 or 200 restaurants.
Miami Spice begins August 1st and runs for two months until September 30th.
For more information about participating restaurants, go to www.ilovemiamispice.com.