Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Vista - A Hidden Gem in Upper Buena Vista

It's so exciting to see how many areas of Miami are transforming into culinary hot spots and trendy places to go. One of these areas is hidden between Little Haiti and the Design District, and is otherwise known as Upper Buena Vista.

In the heart of that area, right on 5020 NE 2nd Avenue, stands Vista, a two story restaurant in the chic Upper Buena Vista complex. Vista has an intimate, industrial vibe with an open kitchen and an outdoor patio. It fits right into the bohemian setting of the Upper Buena Vista complex, surrounded by an ancient banyan tree and artsy boutiques. The restaurant also has a rooftop bar with spectacular views of the city, that provides the perfect romantic setting for a date night (or two) depending on your current relationship status (single, taken, or it's complicated). 

I was very excited to visit Vista, the brainchild of restaurateurs Roberto Bearci and Fiorella Blanco from Ristorante Fratelli Milano. I'll start by saying I was extremely impressed from beginning to end - from the cocktails to the food - and I absolutely fell in love with the place. 

Vista offers a nice menu of creative cocktails. If you're feeling like you want some Cuban in your mouth, try the Varadero with Ziami Rum, guava, thyme and lime. Or maybe you're craving an Italian... I mean an Italian cocktail. Check out their Amalfi Coast, made with Aviation Gin, Solerno, Luzardo Apricot, Terragon Limoncello and Cocci Americano. Sweet, bitter or sparkling, it doesn't matter what route you take. You will enjoy that drink.

The appetizer menu consists of Starters and dishes "From the Farm" and there were several that caught my eye. Our server suggested the Crudo and the Maitake. Both were light, fresh and bursting with flavor.  The Crudo was a marriage of Nori cured fish, ponzu pears and arugula. It was salty, it was sweet and it was delicious. The Maitake was an original combination of Maitake mushrooms, over goat cheese and chives, bathed with a fresno vinaigrette. There was a pleasant amount of textures and tastes in each bite, tantalizing the palate. The freshness and quality of the ingredients truly stood out.

Entrees at Vista include pasta, steaks, chicken and fish so there is something for everyone. We were in the mood for some seafood love so we decided on the Branzino and the Salmon. I have a soft spot for everything Mediterranean so when I saw the European Sea Bass on the menu, I looked no further. The delicate, mildly sweet and buttery Branzino was served over a bed of spinach and topped with heirloom tomatoes. The Salmon was grilled to perfection, then laid on boniato puree and fermented black vinaigrette. It was crowned with scallions for the final touch.  Once again, the preparation of the dish was exquisite.

You can't go to an Italian restaurant and not try their signature dessert, so we ended our adventure with the Tiramisu. It was a very sweet ending to an excellent meal. Creamy, rich and decadent, each spoonful made me forget the fact that behind all that deliciousness there were calories. I don't regret it though. I would do it all again....

For more information on Vista, visit their website here or call them at 305-405-7547.

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