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MIAMI BEACH (CBSMiami) – For 18 years now, Casa Tua on Miami Beach has earned a reputation as a top notch fine dining experience.

It includes not only the impeccable cuisine but also an array of fine art and elevated service.

At the helm is owner Miky Grendene, who also works alongside his wife, Leticia.

For the Grendenes, it’s about making guests feel at ease.

“When I opened Casa Tua, that was the objective. We wanted it to feel more at home than a restaurant. It’s always been that at Casa Tua. The name means ‘your home,’” Miky said.

Casa Tua has another location in Saks Fifth Avenue at Brickell City Center and one at Casa Tua Aspen. He has plans to open in Paris late this spring.

For the first time now, Casa Tua Miami Beach is open for lunch, with seating outside among the flowers and vines.

“We decided to open for lunch because there’s not so many places like this where you’re in a garden with beautiful orchids. It’s a completely different situation during the day. The night is more romantic, you have candles, but during the day it’s equally as beautiful,” he explained.

The lunch offerings are lower priced than dinner and range from pastas to salads, meats and more.

They begin their tasting with “Miky’s Salad” a dish he designed with arugula, artichokes, avocado, pears, and walnuts.

“I’m obsessed because I love all of those textures together, with the avocado and crunch of the nuts,” said Petrillo.

“It’s light and citrusy and had sweetness from the pear. It’s got the whole kitchen sink in it and it feels just right,” said Miky.

He serves a delicate salmon carpaccio topped with fennel and orange and two types of homemade pasta. Both are cavatelli, one with pesto and shrimp, the other fresh tomato and basil.

“Not good. Crazy good,” said Petrillo.

“There’s ricotta cheese inside the pasta, fresh tomato, and fresh basil. It’s the simplest way to do this pasta but I think one of the best,” said Miky.

They end on a nut crusted seared salmon.

“The crunch is great and it’s served room temperature, which I love,” said Petrillo. “It’s a little undercooked and seared on outside so it gives it a lovely texture, that’s why you’re in business for 18 years!”

“I love to cook and spend a lot of time in the kitchen experimenting and cooking for my family and my kids,” Miky said.

Casa Tua is serving lunch Thursday through Sunday and dinner every day.

For more info visit www.casatuamiami.com.

Lisa Petrillo

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