Foodie Find: Leku
Sharing space with the Rubell Museum, the restaurant is offering fare so tasteful it’s fitting for those appreciating either culinary and curated art.
Leku, a restaurant sharing space with the Rubell Museum in Allapatta, is offering fare so tasteful it’s fitting for those appreciating either culinary and curated art. Open for lunch and dinner and buzzing this past Art Week Miami, it’s alfresco dining throughout as even past the garden and patio, the crisp, modern indoor bar and indoor seating benefits from the breeze when the are walls opened up.
The menu created by Chef Mikel Goikolea, a member of the ownership team, is from Basque Spain and lists dishes made with seasonal ingredients. To start, there’s Tartar de Remolacha with beef tartare and olive oil caviar, Traditionals Pulpo a la Gallega served Gallcian style and Short Rib Sliders that are served on milk buns. There’s also a large selection of seafood, several of the varieties prepared as specials that change with the waters. The clams were replaced with cockles so fresh they arrived around the same time we did and we’re prepared with a warm salsa verde and severed with crusty bread. The Scallops a la Plancha are prepared with chanterelle mushrooms, beef au jus, chive emulsion and olive oil pearls, all served in an enamel shell, making the presentation as pleasing as the rich flavors.
The “Arroces” offer selections of rice prepared with standout flavors. The Arroz de Setas a la Brasa is packed with wild mushrooms and a flavorful and the Arroz de Mariscos a la Brasa are both served in heavy cast iron pots. From the grill, there’s a Chuletón de Vaca, which is a 30-days Dry-aged Primbe bone-in ribeye and a Carré de Cordero a Baja Temperatura, which is a slow-cooked rack of lamb. The Lenguado a la Meniere, which is Sole and the Lubina con Emulsión de Bilbaína, the whole Branzino are finished with an emulsion made with simply the fish broth, parsley and olive oil and none of the butter or cream the golden glaze would lead you to believe
Desserts here should be mandatory. Smoked vanilla ice cream is smooth with a complex flavor that complements each, sweet spoonful. The Basque Cheese Tart is a thick slice oozing creamy mounds of filling and the Chocolate Fondue is warm and balanced with a golden cake and rich melting center that’s crisp on the edges.
Leku opened in July and is run by a partnership of impressive restaurant veterans including Alejandro Muguerza of Le Basque Catering, Andreas Schreiner of Schreiner Hospitality and Terry Zarikian of New York and South Beach Wine & Food Festival. The goal is to bring the flavors of Cote Basque region by featuring innovative cuisine. The all-day lunch and dinner menus also feature an impressive wine lists and a bar offering creative and traditional cocktails.
Brett Graff is SocialMiami.com’s managing editor and has been a journalist covering money, people and power for over 20 years. Graff contributes to national media outlets including Reuters, Glamour, Harper’s Bazaar, Maxim, and the PBS show, Nightly Business Report. A former U.S. government economist, her nationally syndicated column The Home Economist is first published in The Miami Herald and then on the Tribune Content Agency, where it’s available to over 400 publications nationwide. She is broadcast weekly on two iHeartRadio news shows and is the author of “Not Buying It: Stop Overspending & Start Raising Happier, Healthier, More Successful Kids,” a parenting guide for people who might be tempted to buy their children the very obstacles they’re trying to avoid.