Slow Fires at Cypress Tavern | Chef Justin Smillie’s Cookbook Dinner & Upland Miami Preview


Chef Justin Smillie is coming to town, and he’s making a stop with Schwartz first! Before Upland — the restaurant he opened in NYC with Stephen Starr, named after his hometown in California — opens in Miami Beach’s South of Fifth neighborhood later this fall, we will welcome him for a cookbook dinner and preview of the deliciousness to come.  Join us Tuesday, October 25 at 7pm for Slow Fires at Cypress Tavern. TICKETS ARE AVAILABLE HERE TODAY!  Included for $195 are passed canapes, welcome cocktail, 4 plated courses including wine pairings, a signed cookbook, and tax and gratuity.  And Justin’s company of course!


Cypress Tavern chef de cuisine Max Makowski knows what's up. He had his copy long before we confirmed Justin!

Cypress Tavern chef de cuisine Max Makowski knows what’s up. He had his copy long before we confirmed Justin!

Drawing on his rural youth — the rustic elements of the outdoors including regular camping trips, foraging for wild ingredients, and fly-fishing — for inspiration, Justin worked his way through some pretty incredible kitchens to get where he is today, making his own mark. From Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s Mercer Kitchen to Danny Meyer’s Gramercy Tavern and Jonathan Waxman’s Washington Park and Barbuto, he fell in love with the bold flavors and rustic techniques showcased in the restaurant, and this philosophy would stick with him. We too got bitten by the Smillie bug after memorable meals at Il Buco Alimentari e Vineria, where he earned three stars from The New York Times.

In November 2015, the chef released Slow Fires: Mastering New Ways to Braise, Roast, and Grill. His first book, which is published by Clarkson Potter, explores the fundamental techniques of braising, roasting, and grilling–and shows you how to see them in new ways, to learn the rules to break them.  We can’t wait to do just that after trying to wrangle Justin for what seems like forever. Can’t believe it’s happening. Pinch yourself. It’s real!

A quick note on ticketing for this event: We are pleased to try out Mixstir for the first time, a South Florida-based company (which we are always happy to support!) with an easy-to-use and beautiful e-ticketing interface. We think you’ll think it’s a great improvement, too.  Please email me your feedback if you’d like at  We are eager to hear what you think, and look forward to seeing you on October 25!

[PHOTOS] [VIDEO] A #SOBEWFF Week in Review with No End in Sight

It’s only Friday, the second official day of South Beach Wine & Food Festival, but for we the people of Genuineland it’s day 6 of a whirlwind that began on Sunday at the beach and has progressed in stages of playtime, beach time, farm time and hard work to where we are now.  Sunday’s The Gramercy Room at The Cypress Room will close us out with a curtsey.

It’s why we love this week every year.  The pleasure, the pain and most of all the people.  An exquisite mix at once dangerous and rewarding.  We leave you now with our medicinal elixir in these heady times, some multimedia to soothe the soul and leave that warm fuzzy feeling inside.  While we continue to climb out of the tall weeds at the Schwartzoffice, stay focused on the best feeds in the biz especially this #SOBEWFF weekend @BarbutoNYC, @chefjwaxman@MGFD_MIA, @ellliesara, @ktchntrvwr, @chefswidow, @Chefsawyer, @marcvetri@jennlouis (did someone say Knaus Berry Farms sticky buns?), @chefaz, @onkappysplate@mikesolomonov, @chefmarcmurphy and @thebillyharris.  #intesity.  Just the way we like it.  Tennis, anyone?

Tuesday’s Eating Italy in Miami  at MGFD with Jeff

Wednesday’s Lincoln Pizzeria at Harry’s with Jenn

Hanging with Harris visits The Raleigh to cook Harvey Cedars Fish Stew with Michael (shot August 2103, live today)

Hanging with Harris visits The Cypress Room with Ryan (shot August 2103, live today)

Hanging with Harris visits Harry’s Pizzeria to make laffa with Mike from Zahav, (shot August 2103, live today)

A Tale of Two Falls: Adventures in Seasonal Foraging from MIA to NYC

This time of year is an exciting one as a chef and a diner no matter where you live in the country. Farm to Kitchen’s Chris Padin just stopped by The Genuine Hospitality Group office here in Miami’s Design District to pick up his budget for today’s Homestead farm run. At 4:00 p.m. he’ll return with a van full of produce, stopping first at The Cypress Room, then to Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink, and finally Harry’s Pizzeria. 1,276 miles away in New York City’s Union Square, where the farm comes to the restaurant, Mo of Gramercy Tavern is visiting vendors and collecting orders on his morning market run. Same strokes for different folks. And thanks to Instagram, we get to follow along.

So what’s being harvested and what is growing in these parallel universes?

Here in Miami, we are still squeezing the last of this particularly drawn out summer season which means okra, calabaza and even mangoes are still coming in – like the third wave of them – and this time it’s the gorgeous specimens that are the huge Kents and vibrantly colored Keitts. Passion fruit and avocado, sporadic year-round crops, are currently plentiful. And all the while our typical fall crops are kicking in and hitting menus like beans of all kinds, squash, chard, kale, carrot and eggplant. Check out Chris’ full local product availability list for this week, here. Winter’s seeds are still incubating, from cucumber and peppers to oodles of our favorite crop, local heirloom tomatoes. This year we’ve got a new one we haven’t tried, but native to South Florida for ages, the Everglades tomato. Teena’s Pride has offered to grow this tiny treat for Slow Food Miami’s Ark of Taste event on January 28, and we’ll be serving it in every course!

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Meanwhile up in New York City, tomatoes are at their peak. There are beans, beans, beans… even strawberries… We have the best of both worlds here at Genuine HQ. Not only do we enjoy diverse year-long growing season with staples and tropicals, but we are heading to the Big Apple all next week to enjoy its bounty before it’s gone! Our berries are in the ground and will fruit when the north is blanketed in snow.

The main event is Lemon: NYC for Alex’s Lemonade stand on Tuesday, October 8, but there will be extracurricular activities sprinkled throughout our stay, including yummy meals of fresh product cooked close to the source by the best in the business. Joining Michael to represent The Cypress Room up in NYC for the first time is chef de cuisine Roel Alcudia. His menu is looking killer, and we can’t wait to see what local product will grace it. There will be bottles of our brand new 12 ounce Michael’s Genuine Home Brew and other Back Forty Beer Company brews for our table of 10 should bottling get completed in time (fingers are crossed!) We can remember last year’s event, the second hosted by the one and only chef Jonathan Waxman and produced by one of our favorite pint-sized juggernauts, Barbuto GM Jennifer Davidson. Roel, then still living and working in NYC, had chaperoned Michael and Bradley’s ridiculous Striped Bass to perfection. What a difference a year makes.

Happy Friday from all of us at The Genuine Hospitality Group, and see you soon New York City!