Byblos Miami is an off shoot of the Toronto original, set in the Shorecrest Tower of the Royal Palm South Beach. Located at 1545 Collins Avenue, it’s a 2 story space, that was formally CATCH Resturant. Featuring upscale Mediterranean cuisine, Byblos fuses food from Greece, the Middle East, and North Africa. It is a beautiful space with high ceilings and fabric wrapped panels. The décor is in soft blues, greens, beiges and off white tones. The downstairs lounge has the original art deco Terrazzo floors.
The menu is similar to Toronto but it includes a few “Miami” style dishes that are only local to the area, and, as usual it is, “family Style” sharing. I am actually getting sick of this concept. Far too many places now serve this way. They upsell you as many dishes as they can, and tell you they will come out when ready. Is this a new way of serving because the kitchen can’t finishes all dishes at once? I have been to many a meal where some have almost finished eating until the others are finally served. Just a grievance of mine, but I digress …
We started with some Mezze dishes which are small plates. The Fig salad is quite good. The Pide bread was interesting, we opted for the Mozzarella and truffle on ours. The crispy Squid was okay, but if you want to try great squid go to Mandolin. We had various other Mezzes, but nothing was a standout. As a matter of fact, the dishes have more flavour at the Toronto location. Once the food comes out, they really rush all the dishes. Of the larger plates, we ordered the whole snapper. The fish was fresh tasting and perfectly cooked. The roasted cauliflower which I love in Toronto, was bland tasting and came almost raw. We had to send it back as we couldn’t get our fork through it. I was surprised they didn’t take it off the bill, as the second one came about 20 minutes later after we finished eating.
For dessert, the chocolate mousse was about the best choice on our platter.
I want to give a shout out to our Toronto boys who have opened this beautiful restaurant in South Beach to very positive reviews in all the papers. However, for me the execution of the dishes were not up to the Toronto standards. It has potential to get better, but I am not rushing back any time soon. There are so many other new and older fab places to try.
Recommended, but with trepidation.