Every year seems to bring about restaurant closings, but this year's been particularly hard, especially the last few months. More places on my "usuals" roster have shut their doors. So here's my list of places I'll miss and thanks to the owners for taking the risk of opening these unique places in a burgeoning Miami food scene in the first place:
Sheba - the only Ethiopian in Miami for a while (although I recently saw a sign at Kafa Kafe near the Design District for Ethiopian dinner - Chowdown anyone?) the place was as much a trendsetter in the Design District as MGFD. Friendly owners and staff, great entertainment and delicious food.
Le Bon - Learned about it's demise Friday when the restaurant was shuttered and the windows covered with posters for the new, expanded Tiramesu. Where to go for mussels and frites on an early Sunday dinner on Lincoln Rd I have no idea, but this place was always the underappreciated little sister of its slutty older sister Tiramesu. GIve they people what they want, and according to Lincoln Rd, what people want is a lot of Italian food. But again, thanks for giving this place its moment in the sun, perhaps in a less touristy area a mussels restaurant can thrive (Midtown anyone?).
Boutique Kitchen - a sign said the place was shut down for a day due to a busted air conditioner. Weeks went by with no opening. Finally the menu was taken down and tables and chairs removed. It was a neighborhood place that my friends were jealous they didn't have in their neighborhood. Good, inventive, homestyle food, excellent prices, friendly owners. Don't know what happened but I wish Jean luck wherever he is.
Pacific Time - yes, it basically moved, but it's not the same. Not that I don't enjoy PT2, I do, but the original PT had its place on Lincoln Rd where it was basically the only fine dining establishment for a while. Gone is the duck but now there's sweetbreads! Guess we made out better with this move.
Domo Japones - I hated this place. The bad service, mediocre food, and huge topless picture of what looks like a barely legal Naomi Campbell made for a place I hoped would be replaced but something better. I think someone may have taken over and redone the spot and I heard the place is doing OK.