When it comes to settings in which you can dine in, few restaurants can beat what Juvia‘s got going on. Situated on the 9th floor of an old parking garage, and overlooking the beautiful, sunshine filled city of Miami, it’s a near breathtaking experience sitting on top of their purple-themed patio, taking in the view. So breathtaking in fact, that you may even forget the real reason you’re there. Which is, of course, the food.
A trinity of French, Japanese and Peruvian cooking styles, Juvia’s cuisine is eclectic as it is stylish, presented and plated professionally and served by a team who simply cannot do enough for you. But before we dive into what this trendy South Beach hotspot has to offer on their exciting, if not slightly overpriced menu, let’s rewind a bit.
With an entrance tucked away just off of Lincoln Rd. and very little signage around, you’d be forgiven for missing Juvia. Once located though, you’re only a brief elevator ride away from pure brunch bliss (or a wonderful evening dinner, depending on when you choose to visit). For us, we took the former option, as we’d already been to the restaurant in the past and indulged in their dinner menu.
Upon emerging from the elevator, the first thing that’ll catch your eye at Juvia is the striking, trendy decor. The silver and purple furniture and foliage on the back wall make for some enticing eye candy that compliments the airy, open and inviting patio just perfectly. Pair it with that wonderful, sweeping view of the city mentioned up above, and there are really few better settings in which to dine – at least in Miami. It should also be mentioned that there’s an indoor seating area as well, which boasts similar decor and wide glass windows, giving you the same gorgeous view.
But setting and ambiance, while important, are not everything. Thankfully, then, Juvia’s got the culinary substance to back it up with their enticing brunch menu, which offers up an interesting mix of dishes that range from raw fish to eggs Benedict, and almost everything in between. Truth be told, the selection of food we were presented with actually fell more on the side of lunch than it did traditional brunch, but it was delicious nonetheless.
So, let’s dive in and see what was served, shall we?
Crudo Box (with rock shrimp tiradito, tuna poke, salmon nashi and hamachi espuma): A sampling of 4 of Juvia’s fantastic crudos, this dish was the perfect way to start off our culinary journey. Fresh as can be and exploding with flavor, the portions may have been small, but the presentation and taste more than made up for it, giving us a refreshing, delicate opener to our meal. The salmon nashi and rock shrimp tiradito in particular stood out, with the former boasting beautiful raw salmon wrapped over Asian pear, and the latter packing a slight and welcome kick thanks to the spicy aji amarillo aioli.
King Crab Eggs Benedict (with Yuzu hollandaise): The only true brunch item we had, this fancy spin on a classic dish had us cleaning our plates, making sure not a single drop of the delicious Yuzu hollandaise sauce was left. It paired well with the generous serving of warm, lump crab meat and was all tied together by a perfectly cooked egg that when popped, gave us a yellow river of runny yolk to smother our meal in.
Chilean Sea Bass (with maple glazed eggplants, Hawaiian hearts of palm and basil soy butter): A divine piece of fish equally as fresh as Juvia’s other offerings from the sea, this Chilean sea bass ranks easily amongst the best we’ve ever had. Mouth-watering, flavored wonderfully and served with some excellent sides (the eggplant was fantastic), this is an easy standout in an overall great meal.
Salmon, Tuna and Hamachi Nigri: The raw fish at Juvia is truly exquisite, and these three pieces of Nigri only prove that point even more. Like the crudos, they all tasted exceptionally fresh and while nothing out of the ordinary was done here in terms of preparation or execution, we enjoyed every last bite of this dish.
Dessert Trio: To cap off our meal, we were served three tasty treats. First up was what the restaurant calls a Juvia shot. Served in a shot glass, the drink consisted of exotic syrup (passion fruit, mango, pineapple) topped with Myers rum and coconut foam. Sweet and smooth, it was absolutely delicious and had us pouring back every last drop from the glass. Following that we got to dig into the Chocolate Feuilletine, which was made up of Griotte confit, chocolate caramel mousse and kirsch ice cream, and the Tres Leches, a milk soaked sponge cake topped with vanilla whipped cream and caramel pearls. If you’ve got a sweet tooth, you’ll no doubt fall head over heels for both. Enough said!
While Juvia does fall into some of the typical South Beach hotspot cliches – portions on the small side, slightly overpriced – it’s still a restaurant worth seeking out. The stunning view and ambiance truly enhance your meal, while the food is prepared professionally and tastes fantastic. If you can get over the fact that you’re going to have to part with a fair bit of money if you hope to leave full, then this is one culinary experience that you can’t miss out on.