The experience of Talde Restaurant (CLOSED) in the Thompson Hotel on 4041 Collins Avenue, starts at the entrance. It’s cool, you feel like you are going through some graffiti strewn back alley. The dining room has a large shipping container in the center of the room and has banquets as part of it. There is a lot of hand painted graffiti throughout. The music is VERY loud, making it hard to talk. The majority of the music is hip hop. Overall the atmosphere is fun and casual.

Dale Talde, the Chef, is an American Filipino who was a Top Chef. He blends tastes and ingredients from Eastern and Western cuisines.

I have to confess everyone’s cocktails were weak. There are so many good Mixologists in Miami and they need to improve on this front.

We tried a lot of dishes. The standouts for us were the Kung Pao Chicken Wings, with a sweet/spicy peanut sauce and a buttermilk ranch dressing. We also liked the Yuzu Guacamole served on crispy rice. This was a really unique and creative dish. The Pretzel Pork and chive dumplings with spicy mustard were quite good and were the chef’s take on street food in New York, where he had lived (he has 2 locations in Brooklyn), and every corner seems to have soft pretzels and mustard. The Short Ribs were charred and flavourful.

The Whole roasted Branzino cooked in a banana leaf with turmeric and chilies was good, not great. The Crab Fried Rice with Jalapeño was fiery hot, but not much of any other taste was noted. The Brussel Sprouts with Green Sambal was not too our liking and was our least favourite dish. It was too sour tasting for us. However we did enjoy the Crispy Oyster and Bacon Pad Thai, with egg, peanuts, cilantro, cabbage and chilies. It had the perfect amount of sweet and sour. The Pad Thai recipe was creative and thinking outside the box. The Roti bread was great!!

There is only one choice for dessert – the Chef’s take on a Filipino dessert. He uses shaved ice, coconut, pineapple, fresh berries and Tapioca balls. Let’s just say it was different.

The service was painfully slow, but it wasn’t our server Alan’s fault. The kitchen cooks everything fresh and you have to patiently wait, as the place is busy.

Parking is $10 when validated.

Happy dining,

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