Magic City Appeal

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Allison Weiss Brady is a Miami girl and she’s exploring her hood. From a new restaurant to political fundraisers and birthday parties, she’s out and about in the Magic City.

My latest fabulous jaunt was to a brand new Coral Gables hangout called The Local located at 150 Giralda Avenue. We met up with a few friends who worked in the White House for a bit and are now die-hard Miamians, including The Local’s co-owner Jose Mallea.

The Local in Coral Gables

The beer garden/restaurant is only a month old, so I was going in blind. We got there on a Friday night at 6:30 pm – yes, some might call me a night owl – and the place was already buzzing. The dress is casual, and there was a nice crowd throughout the evening. We had the chicken wings with Korean chili powder, grilled octopus with summer beans, mussels and fries. YUM!! Chef Alberto Cabrera, who opened Karu & Y and STK, really knows what he is doing.

Though I don’t drink, I can appreciate a creative offering of beer when I see one. Standouts include Sam Smith Raspberry Ale, Oatmeal Stout, Dogfish, Old School and my personal favorite – clearly named after everyone’s ex-boyfriend – Stone Brewing Company’s Arrogant Bastard. Overall, I characterize The Local as an intimate, homey and inviting environment that is perfect for lunch or dinner with close friends. Check it out!

It’s already been a summer of birthday parties, and it’s all about the theme! From Yo Gabba Gabba, Dora the Explorer and Dr. Seuss to Abby Cadaby from Sesame Street – the decorations are amazing, and the entertainment endless. I’ll let you in on a little secret — many of the town’s hippest socials use the go-to kid’s birthday party company Cartoon Events.

At the Abby Cadaby party, all the kids wore headbands and butterfly wings to look like Abby, and there were huge butterfly decorations in the trees. I went straight for the bubblegum flavored lollipops and pink and purple M&Ms. My favorites at these events are the huge blow-up slides that make me feel like a kid again! And I had so much fun buying presents for my friends’ kids that I bought a Barbie tea set for myself. You never know when you might have company over.

Speaking of having company over, my husband Chip and I recently hosted an event at our house for Carlos Gimenez who is running for mayor of Miami-Dade County. A few days later down the street, our friends Jeff and Yolanda Berkowitz hosted an event for him as well. The events were attended by past president of FIU, Dr. Mitch Maidique, Edie Laquer, Izzy Havenick, Peter Gardner and Michael Berkowitz. I like Carlos because I feel he has the integrity and commitment to help turn the county’s finances around. All I ask is that no matter who you support, please go out and vote on June 28.

Lourdes Gimenez, Miami-Dade Mayoral Candidate Carlos Gimenez, Jeff Berkowitz, and the former President of FIU Dr. Mitch Maidique, at a Carlos Gimenez event held at the home of Jeff and Yolanda Berkowitz.

The Berkowitz’s house has the most fun life-sized pink elephant statues, as well as one of those huge pink snails that were showcased all over town during Art Basel. On the side of the snail was a Romero Brito painting, which Yolanda and Jeff purchased at the Miami Children’s Museum gala. How spectacular!

I also recently had the pleasure of running into the lovely Elizabeth Taylor two nights in a row. We were seated next to each other at the Graff table for the Miami City Ballet’s Romeo & Juliet Gala. The next night, Chip and I were with Elizabeth and her husband Mitchell Taylor at the Miami Science Museum gala. The coolest was driving away from the Arsht after the ballet and passing Ultra in full swing at Bicentennial Park. Such a dichotomy, but that range of amazing events just adds to the appeal of our Magic City.

Until next time.


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