Swooning Over Swine

Miami is a great place to try new restaurants, it seems like there’s a new one opening up almost every day, whether in Coral Gables, Midtown or in Miami Beach. Recently, Gastro pubs have taken over in Miami, sometimes making you feel as if you’re dining in NYC or Chicago, instead of South Florida.  Swine Southern Table & Bar, is the latest addition to the 50 Eggs, Inc. family, which consists of Khong River House and Yardbird Southern Table & Bar (both of which I still have to try).  Swine describes itself as ”A house of worship to the porcine pursuits”.

Swine Southern Table & Bar Interior  Photo Courtesy of MiamiEater.com

My husband first tried this place with some co-workers, and he liked it so much, he suggested we go for a family brunch. At first sight, the place looks very small and cozy, but then you take a look around, and realize there’s a loft-style dining space up on the second floor, which almost doubles the restaurant space.  A relaxed ambiance with dim lighting and creative decor make this restaurant everything that a Gastro pub should be.  Also worth a mention, some of the friendliest waiters I have ever encountered in Miami!

The menu resembles one of a typical BBQ joint, with items such as pulled pork and brisket. Everything is smoked in-house for around 12 hours, leaving the area with an intoxicating smell of wood, meat, sweetness, and bourbon. In addition to the creative cocktail menu, there’s also an extensive bourbon collection featuring rare, limited editions and house infusions, as well as various beers and wines to choose from.

Jalapeño, Cheddar & Bacon Homemade Cornbread

Jalapeño, Cheddar & Bacon Homemade Cornbread

The first time we ate at Swine, we ordered a muffin basket, with cherry scones, cornbread and banana muffins. Since we’ve been back they no longer offer it, but you can still order the items separately. Remembering how yummy these treats were, we of course ordered the  Jalapeño, Cheddar & Bacon Homemade Cornbread, and the Granola Crusted, Cream Cheese Stuffed Warm Banana Muffin, both served with homemade berry jam and maple butter. Delicious!

Granola Crusted, Cream Cheese Stuffed Warm Banana Muffin

Granola Crusted, Cream Cheese Stuffed Warm Banana Muffin

Next we had the Crispy Brussels Sprouts with green apple and bacon vinaigrette, one of hubby’s favorite dishes there! And he also ordered a side of the BBQ spiced French Fries, served with spicy ketchup and crumbled bacon.

Crispy Brussels Sprouts with green apples and bacon vinaigrette

Crispy Brussels Sprouts with green apples and bacon vinaigrette

BBQ spiced French Fries

BBQ spiced French Fries

To top this all off, we all shared the Warm Sticky Icky Bun, with maple-bourbon toffee syrup, pecan cream cheese, candied smoked bacon, and sweet potato “pie” ice cream.  As you can imagine, we were stuffed and really couldn’t finish all of this food, it was very filling, but also very delicious!

Warm Sticky Icky Bun, with maple-bourbon toffee syrup, pecan cream cheese, candied smoked bacon, and sweet potato “pie” ice cream.

Warm Sticky Icky Bun, with maple-bourbon toffee syrup, pecan cream cheese, candied smoked bacon, and sweet potato “pie” ice cream.

If you’re in Miami, or visiting soon, make sure you stop in the place that proclaims “the only part of a hog you can’t use is his squeal”, you won’t be disappointed!

Swine Southern Table & Bar
2415 Ponce De Leon Blvd
Coral Gables
http://www.runpigrun.com

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Back to School Blues

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Carolina ready for school!

Well, I can’t believe summer vacation is over and my baby (8th grader!) returns to school today. Where did the summer go?  I am one of those parents that never likes it when school starts and summer ends (not too sure there are many of us around). Especially living in Florida, where school starts in mid-August. I grew up in NJ, and I always started school after Labor Day.  This always made sense to me, as it was September already and the weather had started to cool off a bit.  But living in Miami where it is still brutally hot in August, the last thing you want to think about is sending your child back to school, when they should be out swimming. By the way, I’ve never understood why different parts of the country start their school years at different times. And don’t even get me started on year-round schools.  I know many of you will disagree with me, but I’ve always thought that kids need a long summer break, to enjoy family visits with cousins and grandparents, summer camps, vacations, day trips to museums, etc. And for those kids that do enjoy school, after a few months, they’re ready to go back and start the routine all over again.

While I welcome some alone time, I miss my daughter terribly at the start of every school year. And it doesn’t help that we just got back from our family vacation last night (more posts on that trip in the coming weeks). I love the spontaneity of summer and having free time to enjoy with my daughter, whether it be to sleep in late, or spend the day at the beach, without all the schedules. I have never liked schedules. Now mind you, my daughter does not feel this way. While she thoroughly enjoys her summers, she has always loved school too (thankfully). So she’s ready to go back. The back to school blues only affect mom in my family! I reminisce on the great memories we made as a family over the summer…the laughs, the trips to the ice cream shop, the family visits and the late night movie marathons! And every year I realize…one more summer down, not many more to go.

Back to School Blues

So, I would like to remind my fellow parents out there, do not long for school to start because you’re tired and need alone time.  One day, in the blink of an eye, it will all be gone and your school aged kids will have become adults.

I hope you’ve all enjoyed the summer with your kids.  How does your family handle back to school time? I’d love to hear!

My Signature