Review: Forte dei Marmi, Miami Beach

I love nothing more than to try new restaurants that are different than the rest. I stumbled upon this little gem on the internet, and after much researching of the menu, pictures, and reviews… I decided that I wanted to try it for my birthday dinner. Meaning ‘fortress of marble’, Forte dei Marmi is actually a town on the western coast of Italy near Tuscany. The chef, Antonio Mellino, previously had a restaurant in Italy where he earned two prestigious Michelin stars–the holy grail of the culinary industry that only the best earn. Forte dei Marmi, Miami promises only the highest quality of local organic ingredients, wild caught seafood, and prime meats.

Forte dei Marmi Miami Review

Located in the southernmost area of South Beach, Forte dei Marmi appears very understated and almost hidden from the exterior. We were greeted by a male who welcomed us and personally walked us through and helped us select a table. The interior of the restaurant is incredibly chic, with minimalist white marble features among copper accents and soft fabrics. We made our way to the upstairs of the restaurant, which at the time was quiet and secluded. Later in the night, it became quite the little hot spot and was bustling with excitement.

Service was incredible, our waiter was not only personal but also just the right amount of attentive. They offer a lovely selection of wines and cocktails, as expected. My boyfriend, Andrew, said that this was the best negroni he has enjoyed, and he loves a good negroni.

When it came to the food, it didn’t fall the least bit short of my expectations and hopes. For starters, we ordered the local burrata with prosciutto di parma, calamari, and an chilled heirloom tomato gazpacho. All were delightful, but the clear star of the show was the calamari. Served ‘tagliatelle style’, the calamari is cooked by sous vide to absorb all of the incredible flavors and cut to resemble pasta noodles. It is then topped with caviar and accompanied by a citrus gel. I’ve never had any calamari quite like this–it was absolutely innovative and delightful, exactly what I would hope for from a Michelin star chef.

For our main courses, my mother and I enjoyed the branzino, while my dad ordered a steak dish, and Andrew a 36 hour slow cooked suckling pig. Every element of each of our dishes were delicious. We all found ourselves wanting to lick our plates. The depth of flavor in Andrew’s suckling pig dish was crispy and full of flavor. I found myself reaching for bite after bite from his plate. I would also highly recommend the dish I enjoyed the branzino filet which is served with an artichoke puree, green beans, and zucchini flowers. It was such a fresh, light dish that was incredibly enjoyable.

Don’t end your night without enjoying their house limoncello. Served in lovely gold-gilded glasses, this limoncello was just about as good as my own recipe. Now–for me to admit this truly means something. I would consider myself very passionate for a good limoncello.

Overall, the experience was perfect for a special occasion. From the luxe, Italian atmosphere to the fresh local ingredients presented in such a unique way-I would highly recommend Forte dei Marmi to anyone who has been to Italy and misses the way real Italians enjoy food.

closing xox jenna


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