Disclosure: This post is written as part of my participation in the Everywhere Society. I was compensated for my attendance at this event. All opinions are my own.
Since drawing the national spotlight in the mid 1990’s, Chef Michelle Bernstein has remained one of the region’s most well-respected and successful chefs/restaurateurs. A Miami native of Jewish and Latin descent, this chick has dazzled diners and critics alike with her sublime cuisine and a personality as bright and vibrant as the Florida sun. Recently, she hosted a cool demo at Macy’s at Aventura Mall, as part of their American Icons campaign.
Before she donned her chef jacket, she sat down with me. Here’s some of what we talked about?
Tell me about how your recipes tonight speak to American Icons?
Well, I can’t imagine a better way to celebrate America than through food and fashion–like here at Macy’s. Macy’s IS an American Icon. Tonight, I’m taking 3 very traditional American recipes and putting my own spin on them. First there’s the Caesar’s Salad–it’s very traditional, but with a twist–I’m putting it under a steak, so that the lettuce will wilt a bit. Then, I’m making Shrimp & Grits–a Southern staple. But I’m putting a Spanish twist on it. Finally, a Banana Tres Leches, with candied corn flakes.
What’s happening on the restaurant front?
Sounds VERY interesting! As a chef, when you head out to eat in South Florida, where do you like to go?
I like Hy Vong. We also like sushi at Sushi Deli in North Bay Village. And, I love the dim sum at Hakasan.
Finally, we headed down to the Culinary Demo area where there was a packed house waiting for Michelle. I LOVE to watch her demos because she is just so real–she talks substitutions and how to make do with what you have. It was an added treat that her parents were in the audience–the banter between them was priceless. Her mom actually came up to assist her and I swear these two should have their own show! LOL
The food was amazing and after all the tastings, Chef Bernstein even hosted a meet and greet and signed cookbooks for her guests. I can’t wait to see her again!