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Food is art, too, and nowhere is that statement more on trend than during Miami Art Week. Across the city, art patrons came out to eat and explore the area’s food scene, which was recognized this year for the first time by the Michelin guide.
Aerobanquets RMX By Mattia Casalegno at Superblue Miami, a gallery that focuses on large-scale immersive art work, gave a select number of guests a taste of what it’s like to dine in a mixed-reality environment.
With a menu from lauded New York City chef Chintan Pandya (Semma, Dhamaka and Adda), the experience produced by Flavor Five Studio invited groups of up to 16 guests to enter the dining room of the future and wear Meta Quest 2 VR headsets, embarking on a culinary journey narrated by food writer Gail Simmons. Dishes such as a “mousse of roasted hopes,” “a pearl that tastes like the first time you ever bit your lip” and a tart that evokes the “whistle that the wind makes through a door lock on a cold autumn afternoon” were savored in tandem with their visual, immersive interpretation.
For the first time ever, Moët Hennessy transformed a private mansion into a maison with its rarest pieces on display. Hennessy Rare Editions activated the MH Private Miami Mansion, a dedicated venue for private clients and VIPs, immersing them into the hidden world of the cognac’s exceptional designs. All five über-pieces from Hennessy’s universe of rare editions were shown together. Place Vendôme jeweler Lorenz Bäumer led a tasting experience, which included a look at the Hennessy Paradis x NBA Lorenz Baümer Collaboration, celebrating the NBA’s 75th anniversary. Paradis was presented in a basketball-shaped decanter in hand-faceted Baccarat crystal and hand-painted gold inlay. Produced in just 75 units, the Paradis x NBA piece comes in a cubic case crafted in orange leather embellished with gold markings retracing the lines of the basketball. When open, it doubles as a trophy case.
On the beach, Dom Pérignon partnered with celebrity-favored Turkish resort Maçakizi Bodrum for a MedMiami party on the beach under the stars. Designer Julia Toledano, actress Nadia Fairfax, model Jay Lyon and impresario Guy Laliberté attended. 2010, 2012 and Rosé 2008 vintages flowed to pair with the menu of Golden Volzhenka Caviar and fresh seafood.
Art week visitors needed to look no further than Art Basel’s exclusive Collector’s Lounge — which included a Casa Dragones pop-up tasting room artfully created by Mexican architect Tatiana Bilbao — to see just how well spirits and design go together. In the Casa Dragones cantina, a chandelier made from recycled Casa Dragones bottles draped over an elevated platform and large round bar made of pink terrazzo studded with marble and blue glass, while Art Deco-style mirrored mosaic walls reflected the soft pink “adobe” hue of the ottoman-style seating.
Over the course of the annual three-day Casa Dragones pop-up, notable artists guest-bartend and present a cocktail they’ve created in the space. This year, it was Sean Kelly Gallery stars Awol Erizku, Hugo McCloud and Janaina Tschäpe who made appearances alongside Bertha Gonzalez Nieves, founder of Casa Dragones, the Bob Pittman-backed tequila brand, which is a multi-year Art Basel sponsor. Pours centered around their newest expression Casa Dragones Mizunara, a 100 percent Blue Agave Reposado sipping tequila, the first tequila exclusively rested in a rare oak native to Japan and traditionally used for aging Japanese whiskies.
LOUIS XIII shared its newest creation The Drop with its Miami audience, partnering with Patron of the New for a backyard cocktail lounge. The Drop is a set of five 10-milliliter bottles of the precious cognac, each labeled with its own essence — Loud, Glow, Bold, Smooth and Bright.
Eva Longoria’s Casa del Sol tequila brand hosted a multi-day cocktail party aboard a yacht in front of the Fontainebleau — as is typical with most Art Week boat parties, the vessel never left the dock. Vogue 100, Cult Gaia and Rebecca Minkoff, among other brands, all co-sponsored soirées on the yacht, where guests sipped the star’s tequila and posed with the Miami Beach scene in the background.
Brugal Dominican rum unveiled a limited-edition collection of 11 custom-designed 1888 bottles designed by Alexander Mijares, whose work appears in several celebrity art collections including that of Justin Bieber. Seven bottles are available for purchase, and one will be sold at auction.
Resy and American Express had a strong showing with events geared toward the region’s top chefs, including ones who are soon to open spots in Miami. Chef Massimo Bottura headlined the first night of the four-day pop-up in the Miami Design District. The event space was decked out in a custom art installation, titled Garden of Reflections, which was composed of 17 mirrored, columnar structures by Coachella Valley artist Phillip K. Smith III.
Bottura, the mastermind behind Beverly Hills’ Gucci Osteria, will bring a branch of Dubai’s Torno Subito to Miami in 2023. It was an all-star night with art dealer Jeffrey Deitch, Sotheby’s vp of contemporary curated Charlotte Van Dercook and Phaidon CEO Keith Fox all in attendance. The chef — who is known for his dedication to philanthropy and his inspired dish names such as The Crunchy Part of the Lasagna and Oops… I Dropped the Lemon Tart — prepared a five-course meal for 120 guests, which sold out in 30 seconds. Chefs Missy Robbins and Mashama Bailey also hosted events.
“Art has always been my passion, together with music, poetry, fast cars and motorcycles, and of course food,” said Bottura, chef patron of Osteria Francescana and founder of the nonprofit Food for Soul. “This is the most beautiful job that I do, because I share joy and happiness with people. They come and they recharge my battery.” Food for Soul, founded in 2015, now has 14 soup kitchens all over the world. Last year, it served 2.55 million meals by rescuing 950 tons of food waste.
For his The Crunchy Part of the Lasagna, the chef transformed spaghetti into lasagna. “Our goal in cooking is to transfer emotion,” he explained. “And there’s no more emotional state for me than remembering when my grandmother was bringing a big pan of lasagna for Sunday lunch, and me and my brother and we were fighting over the crunchy part. Tonight you’re all going to have your own crunchy part.”
Michelin-starred Korean Steakhouse COTE paired its proprietor Simon Kim, recent recipient of Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year 2022 New York Award, with his sister Rosa Suehyn (aka Sue) Kim of Artline for a dining experience featuring renowned private collections with works from Do Ho Suh, Yoshitomo Nara, Fernando Botero, Auguste Rodin and Robert Rauschenberg. Tennis stars Venus Williams and Reilly Opelka made the scene.
KLAW, rumored to be in consideration for a spot at Las Vegas’ forthcoming Fontainebleau Resort, opened in Miami earlier in the year. During art week, it had a chance to show off its Martin Brudnizki-designed dining room and panoramic rooftops to the international art crowd. Located in the 96-year-old Woman’s Club Building, one of the first buildings in Florida to be listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the restaurant is known for its king crab, sourced straight from Norway’s Barents Sea.
Miami hotspot Mila revealed Mila Lounge and Omakase and its new members-only MM Club, all with MediterrAsian flair. The door policies there are not for the faint of heart — even with dinner reservations, it’s survival of the fittest at entry unless of course you are Jennifer Lopez, J Balvin, Jared Leto or Drake, who have all frequented this locale. (Reservation confirmation emails even request that diners do not wear perfume or cologne.) A-Listers are rumored to have their own secret entrance. Mila Omakase features 10 seats and dozens of courses throughout the two-and-a-half hour dining experience. The dishes reflect the 52 Japanese micro-seasons with delicacies such as sea urchin from Hokkaido, sustainable bluefin tuna from Baja and Sanuki Olive Wagyu from Kagawa Prefecture in Japan. MM members use their own Christofle chopsticks, stored in wall-mounted niches.
Guests of Meta House — an IRL first look at the new Soho Pool House adjacent to Miami’s Arts District — got a chance to sample the new spot’s bar program. This outpost joins the city’s Soho Beach House. A mixed-reality playground, the three-day experience welcomed Doja Cat, TOKiMONSTA, GloRilla and Coco and Breezy and many more, with a packed roster of talent. Elements of Meta House included interactive AR murals and structures by mixed-reality artists COVL, Morel and Nina Chanel, plus VR-building workshops led by YONK and an inflatable sculpture garden by Milkman.
Over at Mandarin Oriental Miami, Art Week revelers recovered bayside with brunch from La Mar by Gastón Acurio — an elaborate novo-Andean Asian-Peruvian fusion spread of seafood and meats and the Chaufa Aeropuerto, a signature fried rice dish served sizzling and tableside. The hotel also hosted “A Taste of Art” with artist John Collingwood, a beverage consultant who has created a set of 17 paintings. Using ratio algorithms, Collingwood paints cocktails in geometrical shapes and forms including four paintings inspired by his love of classic gin-based cocktails: the Dry Martini; Negroni; Clover Club; and French 75.
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