I thought Beaker and Gray located at 2637 N Miami Ave, Miami, FL 33127 would be yet another hipster, pretentious, and overpriced spot in Wynwood. How wrong I was!  Who knew a Wynwood eatery would have some of the best chicken wings in the area? And how should one react when sampling their new saucy, delectable Chicken Wings ($12)?  For starters, your hands will become a sponge for the unique and addictive house made sauce with brown sugar, sesame, salt n’ vinegar sprinkled with sesame seeds.

chicken-wings
Chicken Wings

Reminding myself of the quintessential New Year’s resolution to drop weight, I ordered a salad. But then remembered that I LOVE FOOD so I ordered the Asian Pear, Jamon Serrano, Cabrales, Salad with Sherry ($13).  This is some straight up bougie master chef %@$#!  Savory, salty, and sweet all decided to knock the hell out of my taste buds as I struggled to pay attention to Cameraman Korey rambling about being more organized.

The combination of flavors leaves your mind trying to not go into a culinary coma while attempting to catch up with each evolving flavor swinging rapidly from one extreme to another, resulting in a gastronomic climax right before you swallow.  Wait, all that sounded way wrong…….

peach-salad
Pear Salad

The culinary elation continued with an order of Cheeseburger Croquettes ($9) made with premium wagyu beef, aji amarillo, and yukon gold.  Who the hell does this chef think he is making something this damn delicious? Each bite of the large rounded fried Croquettes had my knees shaking as I attempted to go live on Facebook.  I even teared up a little bit from the tangy sauce found at the bottom of the plate.  The fried balls come in four and are easily sharable.  Each is fried with the precision of a veteran Cuban Grandmother and is filled with unforgettable flavor that will have you day dreaming and longing for it long after departing the restaurant.

gin-and-tonic
Cheeseburger Croquettes

Moving along we ordered a festive rice pasta dish—Yellow Curry ($14), constructed with rice noodles, snow crab, and Chinese sausage.  The plate was larger than expected, and had a sweet Thai and Indian flavor to it.  The Chinese sausage provided hints of needed saltiness creating an enjoyable balance.  This dish should be paired with a red wine, but I was too busy gulping down cocktails.

The sauce on the noodles was savory for the most part, but should be eaten right away because it tastes much better piping hot.  Pepper or heat of any kind would send this dish from good to great!  I personally love a little kick in my food when it has a large sweet presence.

rice-noodles
Yellow Curry

The SHOW STOPPER was the Wellington ($28) comprised of premium wagyu brisket, puff pastry and maitake.  Wagyu is one of the market’s most delicious and high quality beef selections.  A Japanese beef such as Kobe beef, wagyu is any of four Japanese breeds of beef cattle. The most desired is genetically predisposed to intense marbling (marbled meat contains various amounts of intramuscular fat, giving it an appearance similar to a marble pattern) and to producing a high percentage of oleaginous unsaturated fat.

The meat from such cattle is known for its quality and commands a high price. So yeah, if someone takes you out and orders one of these Japanese beef options, they really love you!  The price is worth it though.  The puff pastry is buttery, soft, and flaky like a biscuit wrapped around 48 hour marinated premium Japanese beef all on top of a slightly spicy sauce that appears to be incandescent, but quickly fools your taste buds with all heat and spices subsiding giving way to a tang that adds the finishing touches to this $%$@#! masterpiece.

beef-wellington
Wellington

Finally, the cocktails.  All the cocktails were pretty good, but I will save them for a separate article when I review their lunch menu. However, my favorite was the Zombie,  which comes loaded with 4 different types of rum.  It was pretty much a hunch punch, but a quality hunch punch.  The drink came with a little zombie man in it that I thought was super cool, given my love for the show The Walking Dead (Didn’t you just love the last season?  That guy is freaking crazy).  Speaking of drinks, make sure you try some of their naturally pressed juices. I had watermelon and cucumber together.  I really only wanted the watermelon pressed juice by itself, but I felt the stereotyping coming with my black ass asking for straight up watermelon juice solo.

zombie
Zombie

All in all, Beaker and Gray is very likely the best restaurant in Wynwood. Manager Paul Guzman was the type of manager I would have loved to have when I was a server at Don Shula Steakhouse. Instead I had a manager who would literally make babies cry if he passed.  I even saw this guy kill a bird with his bare hands, but I digress.

Paul knew the menu like the back of his hand and is extremely knowledgeable of the drink selections and what paired well with what.  The staff was extremely friendly and the interior was sophisticated and inviting.  I give this place 10 out of 10 stars and can’t wait to write my second review on lunch and their cocktail program! You can reach them for reservations at (305) 699-2637.

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Written by thehungryblackman

Starex Smith is an accomplished and experienced public administrator, fundraiser, foodie, and culinary business developer who has committed himself to maximizing the Black experience in the United States! He currently serves as Vice President of Strategy and Development for Black Tech Week with over twelve (12) years of experience in managing public/private partnerships, large scale events, and nonprofits. He has successfully raised over 20 million dollars in funding for various governmental entities, food companies, and individuals. Starex has assisted countless food industry businesses successfully obtain funding, taking mom and pop storefronts to scalable businesses. His success in working with restaurants sparked a passion for food and entrepreneurship which led to the launching of Sothern Bytes, a teaching platform food business dedicated to an ever evolving food industry with a focus on technology, culture and innovation. Having constantly run into stereotyping negatively affecting his dining and vacationing experiences, Starex decided to curate great destinations, restaurants, and discuss issues surrounding being a hungry Black man. Starex completed both his Bachelor’s and Master’s coursework in Public Administration at Florida International University where he served as president of the Black Student Union and Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity Incorporated, Lambda Tau Chapter

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