Soul Of Miami
Talk About it Tuesday: UberX and Lyft Controversy

Talk About it Tuesday: UberX and Lyft Controversy

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UberX and LyftServices are currently illegal in Miami, but stopping them from being used may be harder than the Miami-Dade law enforcement for sees. In short UberX and Lyft are similar to hailing a cab except you can just download an app on your phone which allows you to name the location you want to be picked up and the location you want to be taken too. UberX and Lyft have a large emphasis on…

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Taste of the Nation South Florida Review & Photos

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Photographs by Paula Echevarria

South Florida (the non-confederate flag waving part of our paradise state) has been elevated into a serious “Foodie” region. While we are still anxiously awaiting our first Michelin Star, we do possess exquisite food, sexy chefs and a deeply diverse restaurant scene with an eclectic compilation of stellar dishes.

If you were unfamiliar with how fantastic our restaurants truly are then Taste of the Nation South Florida was the event to acquaint yourself with Miami’s finest. Almost 700  gastronomes showed up for this exquisite event held at the Loews Hotel. The lavish bash raised funds for Share Our Strength, an organization that aims to end childhood hunger in America. The irony of us stuffing our gluttonous faces to end hunger was not lost on us, but the event did raise almost $100K!!! With the exception of the renowned South Beach Wine and Food Fest, Taste of the Nation is the apex of culinary events in South Florida.

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With over 60 vendors proffering their sensational dishes it’s impossible not to fall in love with a new resto. A commodius grand ballroom was the regal setting, where it was very easy to meet or run into your favorite chefs, writers and food adorers. There were an endless abundance of truffles, oysters, Kobe, lobster, wine and liquor for the enjoyment of the blessed patrons. Since the Shedonist, needed a night off I was joined by Paula, the gifted and feisty Miami Editor of the ubiquitous Tasting Table. Together, we joyously sampled almost every offering until we needed maternity pants to stagger on. I will feature a ludicrously scrumptious seven dishes that induced the loudest and most sensual Foodie moans in us.

The Bazaar by Jose Andres unleashed some scrumptious science with an inventive and sublime spoon of Not your Everyday Caprese. Their magnificent version of this usually mundane dish took a peppered mozzarella purée and cooked it in freaking algae! The brilliant combination created a mozzarella that was soft and firm but profoundly juicy and saturated every iota of your mouth. They added pesto, basil, an air bread crouton and oven dried tomatoes. This little spoon made our eyes widen and then blissfully roll into the back of our heads. I easily had at least a dozen of these supernatural spoons.

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Shikany which probably crafts the most seductive looking dishes in Miami (though I have not been there yet to personally verify taste yet) succeeded in bringing the most exotic dish of the night. It’s opulent concoction was an Arabic tea mousse with rose water jelly, candied fig, balsamic reduction and a raspberry meringue. The flavors were so diverse and yet intertwined together in a uniquely balanced fashion. We definitely will be checking out their full menu soon.

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Occasionally, you will be fortunate enough to find a plate that is creative, delectable and a work of culinary art. Makoto’s Pumpernickel air bread was one of these rare finds.  This thick yet buoyant pastry tasted nothing like pumpernickel and was coupled with a magnificent violet dijon sauce and a pickled scallion.

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The always smiling Chef Kareem Anguin of The Oceanaire Seafood Room went contrarian and was slinging his succulent BBQ Short Ribs instead of a signature seafood dish. The meat was doused in a heavenly sauce that balanced sweetness with a slight zesty kick. It was my favorite meat dish of the night. You can read our review of the superb Oceanaire here.

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Chef Aaron Brooks of EDGE Steak & Bar fame is one of our favorite chefs in Miami. He dazzled us and our foodie friends with his Lobster and Shrimp Roll. The fresh crustaceans were served on a super soft Hawaiian roll that added just the right amount of sweetness to this incredible sandwich. 

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The artistically immersive R House offered up a seriously addictive Tuna Sashimi on a Wonton Crisp. I try not to have the same dish more than a couple times until I have sampled everything at least once, but I could not stop myself from pounding a handful of these straight out of the gate. The tuna was combined with avocado, sweet chili sauce and wasabi cream that swirled together into an extraordinary mini bite. The wonton chip elevated it into obsessive stature.

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Khong River House served quite a treat for the hungry vegans with its Burmese Fresh Noodle Wraps. This marvelous dish is comprised of dried red chili, roasted peanuts, palm sugar and lemon juice mixed with chopped cilantro & culantro, wrapped in house-made Burmese-style noodles. It has enough heat to require a drink after but the sweet peanutty cilantro taste was awesome.  This dish had me thinking seriously about Veganism…  for a fleeting millisecond. 

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The Black and Bianco after party at Lure Fish Bar was sponsored by Tequila Casa Dragones Blanco. Tons of the participating chefs were there hobnobbing with us pedestrians in this gorgeous venue. There were designer desserts and Tequila inspired gourmet cocktails for those who could still fit anything into their protruding stomachs after the omnivorous 3-hour binge. Joshua Gripper from The Dutch created a resplendent dessert served inside a mini fish bowl that was almost too pretty to eat. J&G Grill had a massive dessert table with diverse confections as well.

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Taste of the Nation was our favorite foodie event of the year thus far. Chef Susser and the Loews did a fabulous job bringing together South Florida’s best restaurants serving up exquisite, sexy and creative dishes. If you did not make it this year, then you missed out on a sublime feast. Do yourself a favor and make sure not to miss it next year. 

The best #Foodie event of the year has been Taste of the Nation #TOTN Taste of the Nation Captivates Taste of the Nation South Florida Review & Photos Photographs by Paula Echevarria South Florida (the non-confederate flag waving part of our paradise state) has been elevated into a serious “Foodie” region.
Herp Awareness Day at Zoo Miami 8/16/14

Herp Awareness Day at Zoo Miami Saturday, 08/16/2014 - 10:00 am - 04:00 pm Zoo Miami…

Herp Awareness Day at Zoo Miami 8/16/14

Herp Awareness Day at Zoo Miami Saturday, 08/16/2014 - 10:00 am - 04:00 pm Zoo Miami…

Cisneros Fontanals Art Foundation Announces Fleeting Imaginaries 9/5/14

Cisneros Fontanals Art Foundation Announces Fleeting Imaginaries 9/5/14

Cisneros Fontanals Art Foundation Announces Fleeting Imaginaries
Friday, 09/05/2014 – 11/02/2014 06:00 pm – 10:00 pm
USA. New York City. 1959. Queens expressway.CIFO Art Space
1018 North Miami Avenue,
Miami, Florida 33136
Webpage Link
Cost: Free

The Cisneros Fontanals Art Foundation (CIFO) is proud to announce Fleeting Imaginaries as this year’s Grants & Commissions Program exhibition. As it is customary, the winners are part of the annual…

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Over The Edge Miami 2014 9/5/14

Over The Edge Miami 2014 9/5/14

Over The Edge Miami 2014
Friday, 09/05/2014 – 09/06/2014 01:00 pm – 06:00 pm
JW Marriott Marquis Miami
255 Biscayne Blvd Way,
Miami, Florida 33131
Webpage Link
Cost: Any participants who raise a minimum of $1,500 in donations may participate. Learn more at http://www.otemiami.com.

Join us at Over the Edge Miami 2014 to experience the amazing thrill of rappelling 19 stories – a full 200 feet – down…

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Jon Scieszka - Frank Einstein and the Antimatter Motor 8/27/14

Jon Scieszka – Frank Einstein and the Antimatter Motor 8/27/14

Jon Scieszka – Frank Einstein and the Antimatter Motor
Wednesday, 08/27/2014 – 06:30 pm –
Scieszka-Jon_headshotBooks and Books
265 Aragon Avenue,
Coral Gables, Florida 33134
More Info Link
Cost: Free

Frank Einstein loves figuring out how the world works by creating household contraptions that are part science, part imagination, and definitely unusual. Using real science, Jon Scieszka has created a unique world of…

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Front Page 7/29/14
Tuesday, July 29, 2014

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In The Loop 305– Promoting…

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#LateNightRamblings: So, what does it take to change the world? What does it even take to change your city or your neighborhood? People have been working at it a long time, and look where we are. It just seems like, if we want different results, we need different methodology.

As I delve more into this philanthropic business, this #changemaker world, I see a lot of good ideas, but I also see a lot of inertia, and I definitely see a LOT of bad ideas. I think the thing that upsets me the most is the funding.

I see funding going to so many projects, both new and old, that are so obviously headed for failure. I think the new ones annoy me the most. Sure, they might be some short-lived fun, but in the long run, when the funding runs out, they turn out to be unsustainable. Then, what was the point of all that money?

I see the word “innovation” bandied about quite a bit. I see money going to “innovative” projects for no other reason than they are trendy. Some work out okay, but many, the majority, do not. They are just the theme of the week, they have no substance and no real, long-term merit. But, everyone wants to hop on the hashtag-of-the-week trendwagon. It is like the funders are trying to buy their way into coolness.

On the other side, many of the old style organizations, that have not kept up with the new ideas that do work, still keep plodding along, sucking up dollars that could go to leaner, more efficient organizations. The opportunities presented my new technologies and new management styles are really amazing, but so many people just stick to the “this is the way we have always done it.”

Question everything. Do the old styles of Boards work? I know, it is blasphemy to even ask. Do the old styles of executive management work? Does the old habit of working your volunteers until they crash still work? Do the old funding models still work? If the answer is yes, definitely keep it, if the answer is no, stop holding onto it just out of fear of change.

It is a balancing act that requires moderation on both ends; too bleeding edge, and you end up wasting money on things nobody ever wanted; too tried-and-true and you lose out on the potential presented by new learning. The real magic happens in that middle-area, by taking the old methods that do work, and carefully applying new methodology to them, pushing the envelope, without ripping it.

You know, but nobody wants to talk about the middle. The bleeding edge stuff appeals to the adrenaline junkies and trend-hoppers. The tried-and-true stuff appeals to the complacent and lazy. The moderated innovation that takes place in the middle appeals to no one, but it is where the actual progress happens.

I always say we are inventing the future. We are creating things things that have not been done (e.g. PhilanthroFest), but we base them on the parts of the past that work (it’s a big family festival). If you just do new stuff that has no sustainability, then it does not become the future because it eventually dies off. If you just keep doing the same old thing, then you are not inventing anything. Inventing the future means creating things from the past that are new AND sustainable.

You do have to try new stuff. You do have to learn from the past. You can do both. Unfortunately, it seems that most people think it is one or the other. #facebook

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MIAMI Magazine Presents To Live & Dine 7/30/14

MIAMI Magazine Presents To Live & Dine 7/30/14

MIAMI Magazine Presents To Live & Dine
Wednesday, 07/30/2014 – 07:00 pm – 10:00 pm
liveThe Moore Building
191 NE 40th Street,
Miami, Florida 33137
Webpage Link
Cost: 50

Experience the best of Miami’s culinary scene at the sixth annual “To Live & Dine” foodie fete celebrating MIAMI magazine’s July/August Restaurant Issue in the historic Moore Building. The signature affair entertains the city’s culinary…

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beats after sunset art + music happy hour 8/1/14

beats after sunset art + music happy hour Friday, Aug 1, 8:00pm - 11:00pm Bass Museum of Art…

beats after sunset art + music happy hour 8/1/14

beats after sunset art + music happy hour Friday, Aug 1, 8:00pm - 11:00pm Bass Museum of Art…