MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Peacock Garden in Coconut Grove, a well-known hidden gem, has been a go-to for locals for the past 10 years. It’s the ultimate in alfresco dining.

When COVID-19 forced restaurants to shut down last year, owner Lalo Durazo revamped and reimagined the eatery in every way starting with the famous garden.

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“We started looking about how we could improve it and we got carried away and we said let’s just close and do a whole renovation,” said Durazo. “So what you see is a totally different restaurant than the restaurant that was here for the first 10 years.”

Outside it’s lush and tropical. Inside dining, thanks to the new garage doors, has been transformed into one flowing open-air space.

“So, now we bring the inside out and the outside in. You can be inside but really it’s like being outside because it’s so open,” he explained.

What’s also redesigned is the menu and cocktails like the mezcal and gin drink. CBS4’s Lisa Petrillo was served one ironically titled, “The Wild Lady.”

Peacock Gardens (CBS4)

“Cheers to 2 wild ladies!” joked Petrillo.

Durazo describes the food as modern American, which he says translates into what America is: diverse and multicultural.

“Modern American today is really anything. We have influences from all over the world. In any major city you can find, from good Mexican and Italian to Indian and South African cuisine. You can find anything,” Durazo said.

They start their tasting with a classic American dish, The Maine Lobster Roll.

“The lobster is so tender and sweet and not too much mayonnaise. I feel like I’m in Maine, but here among the tropics,” said Petrillo.

Then the Asian Salad. It’s Napa cabbage, kale, bok choy, cilantro, sesame seeds, hearts of palm noodles, cashews in a ginger-soy vinaigrette.

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Peacock Gardens has delectable dishes (CBS4)

“It’s perfectly dressed. I love the noodles. It has that Asian flair and super refreshing for a warm day. I love this salad,” said Petrillo.

Next, the Italian-inspired seafood risotto with bay scallops, little-neck clams, jumbo shrimp, and Maine lobster and don’t forget the pepper.

“The pepperoncinis makes it a little spicy, it has a little kick,” said Durazo.

“I just felt the kick, but not too much. The smooth gentle risotto with all the different textures with the seafood and the clams and scallops is wonderful,” Petrillo said.

Next, roasted organic Chicken seasoned perfectly with herbs du Provence.

“To say this is tender is a real understatement because it is so fall off the bone delicious and then the herbs de Provence make it aromatic in your mouth. I feel like I’m in Provence,” Petrillo said.

Peacock Garden is open seven days a week for lunch and dinner.

For more info www.peacockgardenrestobar.com

RECIPE FOR LOBSTER ROLL
Maine Lobster Roll – Peacock Garden
Chef Javier Quintana

INGREDIENTS:

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  • 3-4 oz. Maine lobster, thick diced
  • 2 oz. mayonnaise
  • 1 ea. Brioche hot dog bun
  • 1 pinch green onion, chopped
  • 1 whole butter lettuce leaf
  • 1 oz. pickled red onion, sliced

DIRECTIONS:

  • 1. Boil the Maine lobster and scoop out the meat, dice thick.
  • 2. Lightly toast the brioche hot dog bun until golden.
  • 3. Mix the lobster, mayonnaise, green onion and pickled red onion together, adding salt to taste.
  • 4. Place the whole butter leaf in the hot dog bun and scoop the lobster mixture into the bun.
  • 5. Serve and enjoy.

Lisa Petrillo