Viva Italia

Posted by Maryanne Salvat On July - 26 - 2009

Café Prima Pasta

 

A relaxing escape from the typical South Beach restaurant scene, Cafémanorient283 Prima Pasta is the ideal location to enjoy superb home-style Italian cuisine in a comfortable, yet refined atmosphere. 

 

Now considered one of the best restaurants in South Florida, Café Prima Pasta’s innovative menu includes signature dishes such as Carpaccio di Manzo ($12.95), slices of filet mignon, virgin olive oil, lemon, and Parmesan cheese, Black Linguini Seafood ($20.00), squid ink pasta with fresh seafood in a creamy lobster sauce, Veal Saltimbocca ($23.95), veal with a special cover of spinach, prosciutto, and melted Mozzarella cheese with brown sauce, Corvina Livornese, fresh white filet of fish sautéed with light tomato sauce, capers, olives, and onions, and Flan Cream Caramel ($7.00), served with Argentinean Dulce de Leche ice cream

 

This street side café brings the rich and flavorful traditions of Italian cuisine by way of the Argentina-born owners, Arturo and Carla Cea, who have continually expanded this family owned business, attracting significant fanfare along the way.

 

Café Prima Pasta opened in 1993 as a 28-seat restaurant, and now stands as a multi-room haven for fine dining, immersing customers in a traditional Italian setting with warm wooden tables, candlelight glow, and walls full of framed photos of Cea with his celebrity clientele such as Lenny Kravitz, Matt Damon, Shakira, Jessica Simpson, Iggy Pop, and John Travolta (just to name a few). While Papa Arturo Cea and Mamma Carla Cea are cooking in the kitchen, their children, Gerardo, Fabion, and Marcela, take care of the bookkeeping, finances, serving, and maintaining the restaurant’s image, creating a familiar and comfortable atmosphere with a home-ease feel.

 

 

414 71st Street

Miami Beach, FL 33141

 

Restaurant Hours: Open daily for dinner from 5:00 p.m. to 12:00 a.m. 

For reservations (only available for parties of 6 or more) call 305.867.0106.

The Fourth with Flair

Posted by Maryanne Salvat On July - 3 - 2009

0701fireworksFor those of you who prefer your pyrotechnics with a bit of flair, a few notable establishments are offering some swanky alternatives to celebrating our nation’s birthday.  Instead of the typical backyard BBQ and sitting on wet grass to watch a fireworks display, consider heading to the Marcel Wanders-designed Mondrian, where you can celebrate in true South Beach style (minus the hassle) by “checking in for the day” to receive all day access to the Sunset Lounge pool deck-quite a fabulous place to watch the fireworks display over the American Airlines Arena. This package starts at $125 for two and includes deluxe hotel room accommodations until 6:00 p.m., enabling guests to shower and dress up before the evening’s festivities.  As part of the package, guests can enjoy 20% off of Agua Spa treatments. Overnight packages, including daily complimentary breakfast for two, start at $195.00. For reservations, call (800) 606-6090. 

 

Nearby, at Red, the Steakhouse, you can partake in a gourmet BBQ and fireworks viewing party on the private rooftop of the restaurant. Guests are invited to watch the South Beach fireworks display while feasting on the restaurant’s signature dishes in addition to all of the traditional BBQ offerings.  There will also be 2-for-1 specialty cocktails throughout the evening, as well as specially-priced sangria, beers, and Mojitos. Dinner starts at 6:00 p.m., the bar opens at 5:00 p.m. For more information, please call (305) 534-3688 or go to www.redthesteakhouse.com.

 

 

Another fanciful fourth can be had at the Viceroy at Icon Brickell, which is hosting an Independence Day celebration that includes a pool party from noon to 5:00 p.m. on the expansive two-acre deck, a BBQ, drink specials and kid-friendly wading pools. The whole family is invited to the afternoon BBQ, but the party is sure to become adult-centered once the sun sets.  Expect DJs spinning party beats and a chic evening of fun and fireworks, with displays visible from Key Biscayne, Coral Gables, Miami Beach and Downtown Miami. This party is a bargain since there is no entrance fee, and food and drink tickets start at just $5.00 (one ticket is good for a hot dog or hamburger).  Over at Club 50 – the rooftop pool lounge at Viceroy, guests can enjoy a more sophisticated eventing and panoramic cityscape views. For guests who’d like to spend the night, overnight accommodations start at just $175, and include VIP access.  For more information contact: (305) 503-4400 or visit www.viceroymiami.com.

Worlds Collide: BLT, WMC, Tennis, Fashion and Fundraisers

Posted by Mary Jo Almeida-Shore On April - 2 - 2009

pamela-anderson-frido-van-mossel-and-richie-rich-backstageMore than 600 of Miami’s A-listers toasted acclaimed restaurateur, Laurent Tourondel, of famed New York’s BLT, as in Bistro Laurent Tourondel (get it?) at the grand opening of the southeast outpost of the eatery last Wednesday. BLT Miami, at the iconic Betsy Hotel, shares the same distinctive style and tastes of its older sister but with a sexier, swankier South Beach vibe. Lucky guests at the opening savored Tourondel’s signature dishes and desserts. The food just kept on coming! Celebs seen noshing on the endless nibbles: Burn Notice actor, Jeffrey Donovan, (to whom people kept referring as “the Burn Notice Guy,” warranting the nickname, “B.N.G.),” Melrose Place hottie, Andrew Shue, Real Housewives of New York City’s Ramona Singer, and Ingrid Hoffman of the Food Network. Other notables included art collectors, Rafael and Marijean Miyar and Bruce and Kathryn Orosz; designer, Alison Antrobus, financier Alan Randolph, fashion designer, Rene Ruiz, and Jonathan Plutzik and Lesley Goldwasser Plutzik, principal owners of the Betsy Hotel.



Miami Socialholic

In a Rich Man’s World

Abba’s Rich Man’s World was just one of several songs that composed the soundtrack to Richie Rich’s fashion show on Friday night at the Fontainebleau. Other songs which conveyed Rich’s message included Money, That’s what I Want, Material Girl and Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend. Rich, formerly of Heatherette, unveiled his latest collection during Rock Fashion Week 2009, (ahem, a “spin-off” of FUNKSHION). The whimsical show, hosted by Elaine Lancaster, featured pink balloons, bubble-gum-inspired whimsical outfits, slinky cat-suits, flirty prom dresses, t-shirts emblazoned with Pamela Anderson’s face, and lots of animal prints. The models danced, smiled, twirled, mockingly blew kisses and showed of their exaggerated, colorful accessories, many of which were shaped like giant dollar signs, in keeping with the theme. Pamela Anderson joined Richie Rich onstage at the end of the show and hugged and kissed and kissed him some more! Backstage, Rich went on and on about Anderson, his “muse,” gushing about how “she’s so much fun, loves to make people happy and is such a great mom.” When asked what makes her happy, Anderson, (looking a lot like a living caricature of Hanna Montana) thoughtfully responded, “My bangs.” Wow! Move over Deepak Chopra! Later that night, Fergie celebrated her 34th birthday with a bash at LIV, alongside husband, actor, Josh Duhamel, Wilmer Valderrama and fellow members of the Black Eyed Peas. Erstwhile superstar DJs, Steve Aoki and DJ AM took turns at the turntables at Blade.

Green with Funkshion

Models, celebrities and VIPs packed the fashion shows during Funkshion, on South Beach last week.   The Green Fashion Show kicked things off on Wednesday and the show’s eco-friendly message permeated the entire week- even the food was “green,” supplied for free to all guests by Pizza Fusion an organic pizza chain in South Florida so committed to the environment that every delivery is made with a Prius! For those who saw the big armored truck with the lit up VAULT sign in front of the tents (and driving around SoBe) and thought, “WTF?” it was neither filled with gold nor money, but with something much more valuable.  The VAULT was the official transportation for all of the models all week long!    From Miss Universe and Miss USA to models from around the world, this truck was party central all week!    Funkshion’s co-producer, Matt Heien, quips, “Who needs cash in a truck like this when you have super models inside? I feel like we just robbed a bank with a note to the bank teller stating, “Give us supermodels and no one gets hurt!”

Steppin’ Out

Nicky Hilton, along with Wyclef Jean, Romero Britto, and Akon joined forces on Saturday night at the SSN Stepping Forward Foundation Gala at the Gansevoort, sponsored by Grey Goose Vodka. The celebs mingled and enjoyed performances by teen dancing troupe, The Untouchables, and Sean Kingston, who performed several songs, including Beautiful Girl, which got everyone on their feet and singing along. On the same night at the Sunset Lounge at the Mondrian, guests got lots of satisfaction at Jade Jagger’s renowned, branded summer Ibiza party, Jezebel, the name of which stems from Jagger’s middle name. Voted the best party during WMC by South Beach locals (in an informal, biased poll), the glowing, glamorous-yet-earthy daughter of Mick Jagger, who inherited the her parents’ best genes, hung out with friends, posed for photos and showed off her new collection of clothing and jewelry in the hotel’s poolside cabanas. Inside the hotel, musician, Perry Farrell, of Jane’s Addiction and his wife, Etty, danced and sang on the bar.


Celebrity Sightings

Paris and Nicky Hilton hung at Mokai on Thursday for Paul Oakenfold’s performance during the Front Page party. Award winning singing sensation, Maria Carey, posed for photos and cheered on husband, Nick Cannon, as he spun at Cabana One on Friday night. On Saturday night, Miami native-turned-Ungaro-chief-designer, Esteban Cortazar partied at Bella Rose with fellow designer, Richie Rich, PR guru Paul Wilmot, famed fashion photographer, Pablo Alfaro and hunky NYC socialite/Miami restaurateur, Fabian Basabe. At the club’s Black Sunday party, DJ Steve Aoki and The Bloody Beetroots performed while LA It Boy, Donovan Leitch, was “murdered.” Attendees of Will Castro’s red-carpet event for Unique Auto Sports on Sunday included rappers Fat Joe, and Busta Rhythms (not Rhymes), Miami Heat stars Jermaine O’ Neal and Dorrell Wright, New Orleans Saint, Jonathan Vilma, Shawn Merriman of the San Diego Chargers, DJ Irie, and White Boy from VH1’s hit show “I Love Money.” Spotted at the Webster during the Femme Fatale DJ series: DJ Cinnamon, DJ Baby Dre of Miami Ink and DJ Gabby of NYC’s LOVE Parties and Les Coquettes, designer Tory Burch with boyfriend/ music mogul Lyor Cohen, and R&B singer, Cassie. Watching the tennis matches at Sony Ericsson: Colombian hip shaker, Shakira, Latin crooner, Chayanne, Vogue editrix, Anna Wintour, NFL players Bryant McKinnie and Thomas Jones, rapper, Common, and singers, Kelly Rowland and Wyclef Jean.

Earlier in the week, designers Russell Simmons, Caroline D’Amore, Abi Ferrin, B. Michael and Lei Marco showcased designs at the Fontainebleau;

Dr. Mc Dreamy, a.k.a., Patrick Dempsey, raced at the Homestead-Miami Speedway and NYC HousewifeRamona Singer, was spotted at Kung Fu Sushi at the Catalina Hotel and at the BEST Tennis Sony Ericsson Kickoff party at B.E.D., hosted by Ocean Drive magazine. Chef Todd English surprised guests at the grand opening of The Wine Bar at the il Lugano Hotel. Celebs on the scene last week for Miami Fashion Week included actress, Sofia Comparini; stage, movie and television star, Alejandro Chaban; actor Gabriel Porras; television personality, María del Carmen Sojo; actress and former Miss Panama, Patricia De León; actor Vincent De Paul, Mexican actress Angelica Celaya; diva, Elaine Lancaster; and Grammy Award winning songstress, Albita, who wowed the crowd when she sang her newly released hit, “Mis Tacones” (“My Heels”).

Celebrating with a BAM!

Posted by Mary Jo Almeida-Shore On February - 12 - 2009

Renowned Chef Emeril Lagasse celebrated the fifth anniversary of Emeril’scelebrating-with-a-bamromero-britto-presents-emeril-lagasse-with-a-painting-during-his-five-year-anniversary-celebration-2 Miami Beach last Wednesday with a bash benefitting the Miami Children’s Hospital Foundation. Lagasse’s larger-than-life personality shone through as he addressed the crowd of 400, encouraging them to continue to support MCH. To get everyone’s attention, Lagasse threatened to cut off some of the delectable signature dishes that were being served. “This is how it’s gonna go,” Lagasse shouted, “first go the crab cakes, next is the lamb.” This quieted the rowdy bunch for a short while, just long enough for Lagasse to receive his Key to the City and a gorgeous portrait by Romero Britto, which the artist unveiled on-stage, bringing Legasse almost to tears. Following the presentations, New Orleans jazz vocalist and trumpeter, Jeremy Davenport, a featured musical guest on “Emeril Live” performed. Next up was famed eight-year-old pianist Ethan Bortnick. The pint-sized prodigy really showed his age during his rendition of Billy Joel’s Piano Man, during which he sang, “Singing love to his Sonic and Gym.” Adorable! Bortnick then performed a song he wrote for Legasse, entitled, “Bam – Kick it Up a Notch!” and presented the chef with the song’s lyrics. As expected, the food at Emeril’s anniversary party was plentiful and outrageous, including a raw bar, three carving stations, (one with Kobe churrasco), made-to-order Jambalaya, and tons of passed hors d’ oeuvres- all prepared according to Lagasse’s strict specifications and infusing his unique flavors and essences. VIPs in attendance, who helped raise more than $100,000 during the event included, Michael Aller, Jerry, Sandi and Jacqueline D. Powers, Michael Capponi, Lee Schrager, Gene and Hannah Bortnick, Romero Britto, Thomas and Patricia Cornish, Juan Carlos and Vivian Mas, Shawn Hauver, Emeril and Alden Lagasse, Eric Linquest, Lucy Morillo, Mario and Bibiana Murgado, Luis and Norma Quintero, Leticia Pino, Rick and Monica Schatz, Jerry South, Lyle Stern, Jonathan Tisch, Edgar and Nicole Lozano and Eric and Jocelyn Woolworth.

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