The dining rooms in this Gables restaurant are richly colored and quite lovely, the waitstaff dapperly dressed and professional, the plateware distinctive and bright. The mostly Latin clientele is well heeled too. Chef Willy Hernandez's cuisine is about the only thing that doesn't excel at Caramelo, though it looks pretty -- unfortunately the result of a consistent kitchen emphasis on style over substance. There are some worthwhile dishes to sample, like a boneless quail starter stuffed with congri and garnished with triangles of Serrano ham; and main courses such as rosemary-and-thyme-crusted rack of lamb in a tangy aged sherry demi-glace; and a confit of duck leg served with lean slices of magret breast. Mashed potatoes and unseasoned baby vegetables accompany just about everything, which is boring and surprising in light of the estimable cost of dining here. When chef Hernandez realizes his potential, so too will Caramelo.
An Italian rice specialty made by stirring hot stock into rice, half a cup at a time, until all the liquid is absorbed. Carol, for $100....What is risottoçThat is correct. Okay, Alex. I'll stay with Holy Arborio for $200.He said, "People really know me in Coral Gables for my risotto. We make the best."Who is chef Willy Hernandez of Caramelo RestaurantçRight again. You know, this Dominican-born chef was heralded for his culinary skills at other Gables establishments such as... More »
Caramelo Restaurant has beautiful plateware: elongated rectangles of red and clear glass, white teardrops and triangles, bowls that look like miniature Morris Lapidus sculptures. Weighty silverware sparkles atop meticulously crisp white linens,... More »
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