Joanne and I have been blessed for the past several years to take our daughter and grandkids to Florida for spring break.
And being the grandchildren of restaurateurs, their expectations for dining out are rather high, especially as they grow older. To prevent disappointment – and, let’s be honest, enjoy the vicarious pleasures of introducing them to the new and delicious – I strive to treat the kids to the hottest, most memorable, relevant and challenging restaurants Miami has to offer.
With the prospect of reckless abandonment on my brain, I dismiss all my present protocols for sensible and restrained eating. It’s “balls-out” dining for Phil.
On our most recent visit, we started at JUVIA, the renowned rooftop restaurant on Lincoln Road that features French, Japanese and Peruvian cuisine. Wading knee-deep into the fattiest and most indulgent offerings on the menu, I began with deep-fried calamari, followed by a 6 oz. hunk of fatty braised crispy pork belly on a bed of tamale cream and mustard-agave syrup. That was followed by chocolate profiteroles with high-fat-content vanilla ice cream.
Off to bed…..
The next morning I was awakened by the grandkids screaming that they wanted to go to BIG PINK (home to BIG FOOD) for breakfast. What could be more satisfying than a platter of deep-fried chicken & waffles – unless that might be the cheesiest of breakfast nachos, or eggs & bacon…lots and lots of bacon.
NOTE: For the rest of our trip we ate breakfast at home. But due to the declaration of my granddaughter, we went through 5 lbs. of Nueske’s bacon in the remaining six days.
I didn’t mind.
Next was PIZZA NIGHT.
And the best by far pizza in Miami Beach is from FRATELLI LA BUFULA, the Naples, Italy-based pizzeria. Its cheesy, crusty, garlicky, oily and gooey…all at once.
A three-scoop chocolate banana split for dessert topped off the evening.
That night I had heartburn. It hurt SO GOOD.
Well, one can’t go to Miami Beach without dining at PRIME 112 STEAKHOUSE (see my WTF PHIL ROBERTS blog posting of September 15, 2021.
Off we went, grandkids in tow. Steaks, of course, were involved. But I was on a roll by then and thought I needed something beyond an acceptable amount of wretched excess. So, naturally, I chose the appetizer of sauteed whole foie gras, which in French translates to “fatty liver.” It was rich, buttery, and sublimely velvety.
It only made sense to a slab of red velvet cake for dessert.
Your Minneapolis restaurateur, blogger – and now SATISIFED PIG – was out of control!
The following morning after a breakfast of bacon (lots of bacon), fried eggs and buttery toast, I felt a slight discomfort in my ankle. The morning after that, the pain was sharper, and I thought that perhaps I had broken a small bone in my foot. By Friday morning, the pain was excruciating.
I could no longer put weight on my foot. I could no longer walk. I could no longer wait to see a doctor.
GOUT!…… F**KING GOUT.
According to some in the medical community, the cause of gout has to do with one’s genetic makeup. Others, as well as the general public, attribute it to overindulgence in rich foods – conjuring up an image of dissolute slobs slouched in wing-back chairs downing tankards of ale. No wonder they call gout “the disease of kings.”
Furthermore, it’s hard to imagine a condition that gets such little respect as it’s usually depicted as a disease caused by SELF INDULGENCE and consequently garners NO SYMPATHY WHAT-SO-EVER.
And what did the kings of yore like to eat? The very culprits that apparently cause gout: red meat…bacon…deep-fried food…organ meats (like that foie gras)…and high-fat dairy foods.
So there you have it. Was my four-day romp indulging in the richest, fattiest foods that Miami Beach has to offer worth it?
The initial SENSUAL PLEASURES of eating certainly were. But….catching the GOUT…..and experiencing pain whose severity one can liken only to male childbirth?
All I can say is……”BUT THE FOOD WAS SO DAMNED GOOD!”