Miami: Tasting Menu at The Cypress Room
One of our favorite meals in Miami was at The Cypress Room. It’s a new restaurant that just opened a few months ago and is a dark, sexy dining room with animal heads decor giving it a manly hunting lodge feel.
We had started out with drinks at sister restaurant Michael’s GenuineFood & Drink and had gotten a sneak peek at the cocktails list. I knew right away which drinks I was going to order. My friend started out with the Calle Ocho, in honor of the local famous street and I had the Highlander. It was my favorite drink of the night.
While plenty of bars do the garden to glass thing, I found quite a few bars in Miami add another dimension to the drink. It’s not just about fruit. There are layers of spice and herbs that was very refreshing and I don’t mean just thirst-quenching. The Calle Ocho had almost a floral quality with the coconut water. And I adored the tomato leaf in the Highlander.
Calle Ocho – Rhum JM agricole, hibiscus, egg white, tonic, lime, coconut water, nasturtium
We discussed what dishes we wanted to try but decided to throw caution to the wind and went with the reasonably priced tasting menu. We did not know what dishes we were getting and thought it’d be an adventure. I’m so glad we did because we got some bites not on the menu.There was a suggested wine pairing but we opted to do cocktails for our meal. I would like to see more restaurants offer multi-beverage pairings that would include wine, beer, cocktails, sake and even soda. That would be fun.
The first course was asparagus wrapped in ramps. Our first bite was love. I was a bit sad when I ate up every last bit of red mullet bottarga and swirled the last bite to scoop up the last bit of Greek yogurt. We really thought the asparagus might be a bit overcooked at first glance but it was perfect.
I had been intrigued by the use of Scotch, the agressive bitter Bonal and sweet chamomile grappa together. It was such a lovely drink with the herbal note coming from the coriander and tomato leaf. The smell of the cocktail alone was amazing.
Highlander – Glenmorangie Nectar D’or Scotch, Bonal, Chamomile grappa, coriander, lemon, tomato leaf
Next we had the squid ink risotto. Originally when we were thinking about ordering a la carte, I knew we would have to get this dish. I love seafood and the clams were the most perfect things. The shrimp still had a wonderful elasticity and risotto was also great. If we weren’t at a fine dining restaurant, I would have licked the bowl.
For our next drinks, my friend got the La Floridita Daiquiri since she was on this tropical Miami kick. It was perfectly executed. Later we chatted with our server who said the head bartender had quite the following and the bar (which was tiny) would be overflowing late nights.
La Floridita Daiquiri – Clement premiere agricole rum, Depaz-aged agricole rum, lime, grapefruit, simple syrup
I was intrigued by the triggerfish which I don’t think I had before. The fish is a firmer white fish and it had been poached in a bacon dashi broth. The bacon added just enough savoriness to the dish without overwhelming the delicate dashi broth. The vaguely Asian flavor was amped up with the poached radish and snap peas creating a light bite.
We had noticed the cote de bouef for two on the menu but was more intrigued to learn the beef was served without the ribeye cap since that morsel was saved for the tasting menu. It was probably the most tender steak I had in a long time. I loved the use of fresh herbs and vegetables in every dish and the steak was no exception. This came with trumpet royal mushrooms, pea puree and merest bit of Bordelaise sauce.
That evening I had tweeted a picture of the cocktail menu and someone commented on the Count Basie cocktail. It is named for the jazz musician known for many musical styles. And so the cocktail seems like a bit of everything as well. I would say it’s a good variation of a fizz. I always enjoy egg based drinks and the nutty, refreshing drink was good for the humid Miami night.
Count Basie– Redemption rye, Cocchi Americano, Rothman & Winter apricot liqueur, grapefruit, lemon, egg white, soda, pistachio
For dessert, we had a corn custard with tiny popped sorghum. Like all the dishes we had, there was a vegetal elemental and I was a bit surprised to see how well the sweet pea and chervil puree worked with this dish. I could imagine this as a starter as well which makes it the perfect dessert for someone who isn’t into sweets.
With a great menu and cocktails, The Cypress Room was a delightful find. I wonder if they would consider opening an outpost in Los Angeles.(305) 520-5197 © The Minty 2013