Miami’s epic energy and fun spirit remain unmatched, which is due in large part to its unique fusion of cultures. I’ve always loved spending time on Miami beaches, basking in the sun (while it’s snowing at home) and being entertained by the people watching. Sometimes on vacay, I’m in the mood for something a little more laid-back but still carries that Miami vibe. Enter Bourbon Steak, a restaurant by James Beard award-winning chef Michael Mina, located within the sprawling and elegant Turnberry Isle Resort. A leisurely drive from the flocks of partiers, this is one place that the glitterati will migrate to for a taste of the superb cuisine in an elite club atmosphere with well-oiled service. The stunning entrance through glass doors invites diners into the sleek dining room which seats 250 and feels like the beginning of an opulent dream.
The focus of the menu is on the finest meat and seafood available worldwide, with fresh offerings flown in daily. The opener is definitely not for the faint of heart, and sets the tone for decadence: crispy mouthwatering duck-fat fries with three dipping sauces are worth the visit alone. I started my gastronomic journey with the Jumbo-Shrimp Cocktail, which showcases shrimp so fresh and bouncy they could only have been swimming about earlier that day. Each bite was a reminder of our oceanside locale, and I could have put away a dozen shrimp without batting an eye. I snuck in a couple bites of my husband’s local tomatoes which were succulent, juicy and sweet mingled with the creaminess of burrata.
The wood-burning grill is the heart of the restaurant, where premier cuts of prime meat and wagyu are cooked over seasoned wood fueled flames. I had to go for the star of the show, the bone-in ribeye, my favorite cut. It is prepared in true Mina style, poached in butter before cooking. Our knowledgeable waiter suggested that I take it “black and blue” which is apparently a known term in top steakhouses to describe the outside as being charred and crispy on the outside, and truly rare on the inside. I was in heaven- and suffice it to say that the entire steak was polished off despite savoring each bite. Throughout the meal, herbs from the chef’s garden located on the resort are used to add freshness and flavor to every bite. The herbs are organically grown, and only the choicest carefully-sourced ingredients are used on the menu.
Bourbon Steak prides itself on the extensive wine list, specialty cocktails, and even cigar menu (which includes an exclusive Michael Mina cigar), which one day I’ll have to try. The talented bartender came over before the meal to discuss a custom martini, for which he suggested a rare smooth gin that I’m still trying to track down. I lingered on it throughout the meal and had the last sip for dessert. The proportions were perfect and I may never be able to recreate it, so that may be one more compelling reason I return for another memorable experience!