Café des Arts Miami, the new concept from Pierre-Antoine Navarro and his partner Philippe Carteau, who has opened restaurants all over France, has fittingly settled into its new home in South of Fifth. Bringing their vision for the South Beach concept into fruition in Miami’s own little Riviera, they have nurtured the beautiful space, which is blossoming—literally—into a premier dining destination with one of the most picturesque terraces in the neighborhood.
Café des Arts warmly welcomes guests to its lush patio, which sparkles magically in the evening. The interior is at once cool and cozy, with stone floors and plush leather seats. And, as its name suggests, the entire restaurant is outfitted with edgy art. One wall, for example, is graffitied with iconic names such as Albert Einstein and Bridget Bardot. Ambient music offers a cool, consistent rhythm without challenging conversation flow, and tables are well-positioned throughout for privacy within the social setting. The ambience is completed by playful chandeliers providing a pleasant glow.
The menu at Café des Arts is as effortlessly chic as its surroundings, spanning the Mediterranean and then some with offerings for every mood. As a light starter with Italian flair, the Artichoke Carpaccio is fresh and tender, served with a perfectly balanced lemon dressing and thinly shaved Parmigiano-Reggiano. The Homemade Foie Gras Terrine, which is marinated for 48 hours with cognac and served with fig jam, offers a rich nod to French cuisine. Pastas and risottos are expertly executed, while main course selections include Wagyu Ribeye Steak with wasabi Japanese sauce and spinach; fresh-cut traditional Beef Tartare; and White Cod poached in coconut milk, fresh ginger, and caramelized pineapple, served over wild rice. Truffles are also on the menu—anyway you like them—from Truffle Risotto to Truffle Pizza, and even Truffle Scrambled Eggs for brunch.
With a French chef in the kitchen, you definitely don’t want to skip dessert. The Crème Brûlée with Lavender is crisped to precision and balanced with a silky center. A trio of mousse, hidden beneath a rich layer of chocolate, is sinfully decadent, while the Pineapple Carpaccio is delightful option to add a touch of sweetness to the end of a meal.
Patrons will come for the food and stay for socializing. A celebration ensues on Monday nights for Food Fashion Art, a weekly event honoring the restaurant’s featured artist (a new one is chosen every few months to decorate the walls). A peaceful retreat every other night of the week, Café des Arts is destined to be a local favorite and a definitive date spot.
Café des Arts is located South of Fifth at 22 Washington Ave., Miami Beach, FL 33139, and is open daily for lunch from noon to 3pm and dinner from 6pm until midnight.