Saturday, January 23, 2016

best thing i ate last week (jan 4-10): seafood plateau at Le Zoo

I'm still playing catch-up on "best thing i ate last week" but there's only two weeks to go. After our week-long Southern expedition (here's a report on Memphis; similar travelogues for Nashville and Louisville hopefully coming soon), I figured we'd be eating a lot of home cooking. I was right, but not entirely. Within a week, we were ready for someone else to cook for us.

Miami has recently seen a mini-wave of new French bistro / brasserie type places. I've not tried them all, but I've been to several, and found them mostly underwhelming or worse. Le Zoo, Stephen Starr's new place in Bal Harbour Shops (in the cursed spot across from the thoroughly mediocre but ever-popular Carpaccio that has previously been home to La Goulue and Elia before that), seems to be getting it right.

We didn't sample much, but what we did try was quite good. The standout was this seafood platter; a "petit plateau" came with a half-dozen oysters from east and west coasts, four littleneck clams, four sweet scallops in their shells with a dusting of espelette pepper, about a dozen little Mediterranean mussels, a cluster of cold poached shrimp, half a lobster, and both king crab and snow crab. Everything was perky and fresh, and for $75, seemed like a relative bargain as such things go.

Runner-up; a vitello tonnato from the same meal, with properly rosy, thin-sliced veal, a mayo properly redolent and funky with anchovy, and a scatter of cherry tomatoes, capers and celery leaves.

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