Joyce to the World of Grass-Fed Beef

From soil health to genetics, North Carolina-based Joyce Farms does grass-fed beef right, because that’s the only way Ron Joyce knows. Standing behind the tasty intersection of tradition, science and passion, Joyce’s energy is palpable through the phone as we recount how a jet-setting French chick became a worldwide calling to find lost heritage breeds and do the work to raise them the way they’re supposed to be raised.

“No day is ever the same,” he says. “We were in meetings on Friday, and then I saw your missed call.  It’s one foot in this year and one foot in the next.”

In November, Amara at Paraiso chef Michael Paley and senior sous Max Makowski paid Joyce Farms a visit to check in on his product mix and talk sourcing for our new restaurant’s menu including dry-aged grass-fed ribeye.  So for about a month now, I’ve been wanting to catch up with this man behind one of the most exciting ranching operations in the U.S.  It’s been much longer than that since we last connected — on Michael’s first visit in 2010 to get acquainted with the now so familiar bird on the Michael’s Genuine menu — Poulet Rouge.  Joyce left one of those impressions that sticks with you, though.  Something in his voice rang true.  Genuine…  The same voice greeted me on the phone last week, but with news to share about the his consortium of farms, the company’s focused growth and his current projects that have our ears perked.

“People eat our beef and they can’t believe the flavor. They also can’t believe it’s raised 100% on grass,” he says. “I cringe when my friends say it’s rough and you have to get used to the difference in taste. Most grass-fed beef isn’t appetizing, because it’s complicated to produce, and most are doing it wrong. This is unfortunate of course for everyone trying to do it right.”

Aberdeen Angus

Doing it right we learn is more scientific than we could have ever imagined, not to mention more expensive.  Ron explains that people tend to forget grain has been status quo since WWII. Corn is cheap, but it’s not natural and collateral damage included a shift in fat content from unsaturated to saturated, an increase in the presence of E. coli, and a change in the pH of the meat.

“When Michael Pollen published The Omnivore’s Dilemma, it was a game changer,” Joyce says. “Demand outpaced supply for grass-fed.  People were gravitating to it for the health benefits, like better Omega 6 to 3 ratio.”

The whole thing started with Poulet Rouge, and Joyce blames his father, who was with another livestock company in the ’50s and ’60s.  He would talk about how disappointed he was in how chicken had changed.

“As a younger person I put that off thinking this is about a guy getting older lamenting about the past and ‘the good old days’,” he explains.  “But then other people started saying the same thing. And then I went to France which changed everything. It made me realize that people don’t remember here in the States how it used to be.  Only the older folks do!”

Joyce explains that in Europe, they’re called industrial chickens, and most butcher shops, a fixture in every neighborhood, don’t sell industrial.  “You have a choice over there, and in many ways that’s the short term goal here.”

Chef Paley, chef Max and the team at Amara during one of four preview dinners this week. With the Art Basel pop-up wrapped, it’s time to shift gears for opening in January.

This chicken problem was the problem that got him started, and the French helped him chose the Label Rouge, a naked neck bird with thin skin at half the thickness of its industrial counterparts that renders crispy. It took Joyce a while to break even, but after they made these birds sustainable the question was naturally, what else?  In America it has been cheap and large for decades. The meat and poultry is market driven here.  It’s a give-the-people-what-they-want mentality that can be poison for a food system.  And labels aren’t helping.  They can be downright misleading. Free-range this, and pastured that.  Semantics, however, mean something.  They can mean everything. Create a movement, even.

“Chefs were asking do you know anyone doing great grass-fed?,” he continues. “They would say how they’d get requests, and then dishes would be sent back! Feedback was that it tasted gamey and livery. Something wasn’t right and I knew it didn’t have to be that way. Then we found Allen.”

Disillusioned with what universities were researching and teaching on big Ag’s dime, this farmer, Dr. Allen Williams gathered a band of rebels and dropped out of the system to form a consultancy and started working on cattle.  They found that the genetics in the animal had changed to be efficient on corn.

Allen Williams, Joyce’s soil guy.

“The animals simply didn’t do well on grass anymore,” Joyce explains. “Everything in a pasture has a purpose. If you plant a monoculture, one kind of grass and the grass is too green you get minerals and that off-putting taste. Fertilizer kills all the natural organic matter, especially weeds which are a natural dewormer.”

With no choice but to go back to the trough, a farm can get sucked into a viscous cycle that eventually kills everything. Soil becomes compacted. It loses the ability to absorb water, so there’s runoff and loss of top soil. “Animals have a strong sense of what they need to eat it, but if it’s not there.”

No grain finishing here, just fire for the Aberdeen Angus ribeye.

Now the company’s genetics and foraging expert, Dr. Williams is a sixth generation farmer and holds a B.S. and M.S. in Animal Science from Clemson University and a
Ph.D. in Genetics & Reproductive Physiology from LSU.  He has focused on soil and regenerative farming techniques to develop a grazing cocktail for the cattle comprised of 18-24 different plants including legume. Happy cows indeed. In three years, they were able to lower impact costs and eliminate use of pesticides and insecticides. This is not what your extension agent is telling you to do. This is not only maintaining soil health through a natural process, but restoring pastures to the way it used to be.  Bison will be next, the ultimate expression of this principle, because of course, prairie animals don’t belong on feed lots and there are only a handful of suppliers even doing grass.  Joyce will be field harvesting, because bison don’t like to be handled and agitation manifests bad flavors in the final product.  It’s a full-on, holistic approach to the entire ecosystem around commercial livestock and a commitment to doing it right.

“This doesn’t work if you grab a jug every time to see a pest. You have to rethink what that bug is,” he reflects.  “It’s not actually a pest. It’s an insect, and the good ones out number the bad”

Genuine Pizza™ Opens at Aventura Mall on Tuesday, December 5

The first location of Chef’s casual pizza restaurant is opening just in time for Art Basel and the holiday season, ready to feed hungry shoppers of all kinds!  Genuine Pizza (formerly known as Harry’s Pizzeria) is located in the lower level, exterior of Aventura Mall’s newly opened expansion wing.  It’s been a long time coming and so exciting to experience the finishing touches as they unfold on the new restaurant design, as well as training with front and back of house teams.  We are passionate about our favorite food!

The evolved concept’s interior by Miami-based craft and construction firm McKenzie features light woods and simple accents like custom yellow and grey Cuban tile, orange chairs, and the yellow-tiled Marra Forni oven. The environment invites guests to experience the attention to detail first hand, at a pizza bar fronting the open kitchen and a glass-faced active dough room at the entrance where the recipe is mixed, kneaded and proofed daily.

Outdoor seating is flanked by garden planters and fronted by two distinct, dramatic works of art: Aventura Slide Tower – a 93-foot tall sculpture by German artist Carsten Höller that visitors will be able to slide down and Gorillas in the Mist – a whimsical fountain by The Haas Brothers comprised of three large-scale bronze gorillas and four massive bronze trees.

“Honest ingredients, chef-inspired combinations and a thoughtful process is what Genuine Pizza is all about. We are truly passionate about our favorite food,” says Schwartz. “We are so excited to connect with a new community to the north and thrilled to be able to add better pizza and warm genuine hospitality to the offerings in our new home.”

In an effort to always improve upon the quality and consistency of the pizza, Schwartz and The Genuine Hospitality Group executive chef Bradley Herron are working again with Marra Forni’s Rotator Oven. With its rotating deck of pure cut Italian stone, the oven retains and conducts consistent heat to bake pies evenly and quickly. While also serving as an active and beautiful focal point for the main dining room with its canary yellow tiles in the open oven station, the new hearth is calibrated specifically for the chef’s unique dough recipe.

The core menu including Snacks, Salads, Daily Entrées, 11 Quick-Fired Pizzas, the option of gluten-free crust, and Dessert. Genuine Pizza carefully selects the ingredients it uses, like Niman Ranch for all of its meats. For beverages, Genuine Pizza offers creative wine and beer selections, along with great local brands including Panther Coffee and JoJo Tea. A daily pie and soup special keep things unique for each visit. Fans can now give the gift of better pizza with electronic gift cards, available for purchase at genuinepizza.com – choose your denomination and send through email or phone.

Aventura Mall offers complimentary garage parking adjacent to the expansion wing, as well as valet. Seating is 77 inside at tables and banquettes in the main dining room, 20 at the counter and pizza bar, and 28 outside.  Genuine Pizza launches with lunch and dinner Sunday to Thursday 11:30 a.m. to 11 p.m., Friday and Saturday until 12 a.m. – no reservations necessary. Takeout with online ordering at genuinepizza.com will be available. To reach the restaurant, call (786) 472-9170 or email aventura@genuinepizza.com. Follow the new location and join the conversation @genuinepizza and #genuinepizza on Instagram.  When the restaurant opens on Tuesday, visit genuinepizza.com to access full menus, social media, sign up for e-newsletter for updates on upcoming openings like Atlanta (December) at Phipps Plaza.

The slide to scale all slides, in our front yard!

Genuine Pizza is thoughtfully-made, a place to enjoy a great meal with great people and without pretense. Genuine Pizza is about consideration of every detail of the dining experience, from the careful selection of ingredients, to the choices made in crafting dishes and the space in which you enjoy them. Being “genuine” is about making the experience better, not embellished – making food and crafting an environment that people feel good about and want to return to. The seed of Genuine Pizza is Harry’s Pizzeria®, first opened by Chef Michael Schwartz in 2011 and now with three South Florida locations. With inspiration from his flagship Michael’s Genuine® Food & Drink, Harry’s became a fixture of the Miami dining scene and nationally-recognized pizza hotspot, named one of Food & Wine magazine’s 25 Best Pizzerias in the U.S. An evolution of the best of the original, Genuine Pizza celebrates its beloved, flagship menu anchored by 11 hand-formed pizzas featuring a tender, quick-fired crust with integrity, as well as a gluten-free option. At the table, the experience is complete with warm service and a wholesome dishes to make a meal, including snacks, colorful salads, daily specials and dessert. From the sidewalk to the dining room, the restaurant buzzes with friends and family hanging out over craft beer, a creative wine list and great music.

Aventura Mall features a collection of upscale boutiques, including Gucci, Louis Vuitton, Cartier, Tiffany & Co., Fendi, Givenchy, Burberry and more, as well as more than 300 shopper favorites such as Zara, Topshop Topman, Apple, Anthropologie, H&M and Urban Outfitters. Visitors also enjoy nearly a dozen restaurants and a taste of South Florida’s thriving cultural scene with Arts Aventura Mall, featuring contemporary installations by renowned international and local artists. Aventura Mall is open Monday through Saturday, 10:00 a.m. to 9:30 p.m., and Sunday, 12:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Call (305) 935-1110 or visit online at www.aventuramall.com.

Your Ticket to Art Basel is Popping Up as a First Taste of Amara at Paraiso

Live music, bold Latin American flavors and Miami’s quintessential chef.  Amara at Paraiso is your can’t-miss ticket to Miami Art Week!

Get a first taste of Chef Michael Schwartz’s soon-to-open waterfront restaurant NEXT WEEK with a pop up dinner experience.  Guests will enjoy an Amara experience including snacks and cocktails for their table followed by 4 courses served family-style for $189 including tax, gratuity and valet parking. Inspired by its idyllic bayside setting, Amara at Paraiso brings together bold Latin American flavors, coastal ingredients and South Florida’s diversity of food culture to create the quintessential Miami dining experience from environment to cuisine to vibe. Revel in the dynamic energy, local ingredients, and natural beauty that defines what living in Miami is all about, and at the best time to enjoy it.

Click HERE to book your table through Resy before it’s too late. You may also do so by calling 305.702.5528. Seatings are available on the half hour from 7-9:30 p.m. from Wednesday, December 6 to Saturday, December 9 on-site at the restaurant in Paraiso Bay ( 3101 NE 7th Ave, Miami, FL 33137).

[UPDATE] You Gift… We Gift Card Back!

HAPPY HOLIDAY SHOPPING! Kick back and enjoy our gift of thanks.

BACK BY POPULAR DEMAND!   We are extending our terms of endearment for one more week.  Until, December 24.  Same links below apply.  Happy gifting!

From Thanksgiving Monday, November 20 through Cyber Monday, November 27, stop by our restaurants, or order online to receive $20 for every $100 spent in Gift Cards. You can purchase physical Gift Cards or our new eGift Cards which can be sent right away to friends and family! Buy three $100 Michael’s Genuine cards, get three complimentary $20 Michael’s Genuine cards at the time of purchase. Buy two $50 Harry’s Pizzeria cards, get one complimentary $20 Harry’s Pizzeria card.

The deal is available for purchase on site at Michael’s Genuine® Food & Drink, Ella Pop Café and all Harry’s Pizzeria® locations. To purchase eGift cards online now and throughout the holiday season from the soon to open Genuine Pizza, follow the eGift Card links below or visit genuinepizza.com!

PASSIONATE ABOUT OUR FAVORITE FOOD
The Marra Forni oven is being cured and the signage hoisted. Get ready to experience honest ingredients, chef-inspired combinations and a thoughtful process at Genuine Pizza in the Aventura Mall as we prep for opening later this month.

Genuine Pizza eGift Card

Fresh, Simple, Pure
Our flagship restaurant in the Miami Design District has been shopping for season and the outlook from our favorite local farms is bountiful! Get taste of what’s growing, prepared simple and delicious, from squash blossoms to eggplant.

Michael’s Genuine® eGift Card

130 NE 40th Street, Miami, FL 33137
305.573.5550

BOLD, COASTAL, LATIN AMERICAN
Michael’s love letter to Miami is also his first waterfront restaurant. Grab the gift of the most anticipated new restaurant of the season… before it opens in January! We are firing up the Josper charcoal grill-oven and getting ready to serve a taste of what’s to come at our pop up in December (tickets here). While we get a jumpstart on opening, you can give the gift of the Amara experience now.

Amara at Paraiso Pop Up 

Neighborhood American Pizzeria
Our original place for pies is your happy place with three locations pumping out your favorite snacks, salads, pizza, entrées and dessert just like they always have in Coconut Grove, the Miami Design District and Downtown Dadeland.

Harry’s Pizzeria® eGift Card

Light & Airy Café
Ella is always ready for a celebration. From our new homemade holiday pies available for pre-order now to daily treats made fresh from our pastry team, there’s something to enjoy or share with the people you love. It’s the little things that make it special!

Ella Pop eGift Card

140 NE 39th Street, Unit 136, Miami, FL 33137
786.534.8177

SEE OUR FULL LIST OF HOLIDAY HOURS

Genuine Holiday Hours | Here’s When to Eat, Drink & Be Merry at Our Restaurants

We look forward to spending the most wonderful time of the year with the most wonderful people.  Here are our 2017 Holiday Hours to help you plan your festive gatherings with us and those you love!  For catered events and large party private dining, please contact Lindsay Guidos at MICHAEL SCHWARTZ EVENTS.

MICHAEL’S GENUINE® FOOD & DRINK
Thanksgiving
 | Thursday, November 23: Closed
Christmas Eve | Sunday, December 24:
Open for Brunch and dinner until 10:00pm.
Christmas Day | Monday, December 25: Closed
New Year’s Eve | Sunday, December 31:
Open for Brunch and dinner until Midnight
New Year’s Day 2018 | Monday, January 1, 2018:
Open for lunch regular hours and dinner: 5:30 – 11:00pm
Regular Hours of Operation
Brunch: Sunday 11am – 3pm
Lunch: Monday – Saturday 11:30 am – 3pm
Afternoon: Monday – Sunday 3 – 5:30pm
Dinner:  Monday – Thursday 5:30 – 11pm, Friday and Saturday 5:30pm – Midnight, Sunday 5:30 – 10pm
Genuine Happy Hour: 1/2 off oysters, snacks, cocktails, wine & beer 4:30-7:30 weekdays at the bar

HARRY’S PIZZERIA® [DESIGN DISTRICT, COCONUT GROVE, DOWNTOWN DADELAND]
Thanksgiving
 | Thursday, November 23: Closed
Christmas Eve | Sunday, December 24: Regular Hours
Christmas Day | Monday, December 25: Closed
New Year’s Eve | Sunday, December 31: Regular Hours
New Year’s Day 2018 | Monday, January 1, 2018: Regular Hours
Regular Hours of Operation: 
Sunday 11:30am–10pm
Monday 11:30am–11pm
Tuesday 11:30am–11pm
Wednesday 11:30am–11pm
Thursday 11:30am–11pm
Friday 11:30am–12am
Saturday 11:30am–12am

GENUINE PIZZA [AVENTURA*]
Christmas Eve 
| Sunday, December 24: Close at 8:00pm. Aventura Mall closes at 6:00pm
Christmas Day
 | Monday, December 25: Closed
New Year’s Eve 
| Sunday, December 31: Close at 10:00pm.  Mall closes at 7:00pm
New Year’s Day 2018
 | Monday, January 1, 2018: Regular Hours
Regular Hours of Operation: 
Sunday 11:30am–10pm
Monday 11:30am–11pm
Tuesday 11:30am–11pm
Wednesday 11:30am–11pm
Thursday 11:30am–11pm
Friday 11:30am–12am
Saturday 11:30am–12am
*ATLANTA TBD

ELLA
Thanksgiving
 | Thursday, November 23: Closed
Christmas Eve
 | Sunday, December 24: 11am – 5pm
Christmas Day
 | Monday, December 25: Closed
New Year’s Eve
 | Sunday, December 31: 11am – 5pm
New Year’s Day 2018 
| Monday, January 1, 2018: 11am – 6pm
Regular Hours of Operation: 
Monday – Saturday 9am – 7pm, Sunday noon – 5pm

FI’LIA
Thanksgiving
 | Thursday, November 23: Regular hours
Christmas Eve
 | Sunday, December 24: Regular hours
Christmas Day
 | Monday, December 25: Regular hours
New Year’s Eve
 | Sunday, December 31: Regular hours
New Year’s Day 2018 
| Monday, January 1, 2018: Regular hours
Regular Hours of Operation: 
Sunday 7am–10:30pm
Monday 7am–10:30pm
Tuesday 7am–10:30pm
Wednesday 7am–10:30pm
Thursday 7am–10:30pm
Friday 7am–12am
Saturday 7am–12am