Miami’s high season is taking shape, and the Four Seasons at The Surf Club welcomes it with returning culinary residencies. Detroit’s trendy Lebanese restaurant Leila, named by GQ as one of the best new restaurants in America when it opened in 2020, returns to Winston’s on the Beach, the hotel’s casual poolside restaurant, through May 31, 2023 .New York-based Michelin-star Kosaka is also back, once again calling the hotel’s Hemingway Tower its Miami home until February 4, 2023.
The specific locations at The Surf Club were chosen to best meet each restaurant’s individual operational requirements and best reflect their respective atmospheres. “Kosaka is an intimate experience, so they needed a small space that could provide a very personalized atmosphere,” shares Keith Space, President of Fort Hospitality, owned by Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts’ South Florida Collection. “Eating omakase at a bar counter is very traditional and Hemingway Tower was the perfect fit. For Leila, we needed a location that personified the fresh salads, produce and flavors of Mediterranean cuisine. The outdoor area of Winston’s on the Beach, especially during sunset was the perfect setting. The warm open space and fresh air is the perfect complement to the Leila experience.”
“We expect both Kosaka and Leila to return next year,” Space reveals. “In fact, we are currently working on plans to have both restaurants in permanent locations in Surfside.”
Founded by chef Samy Eid in downtown Detroit as a tribute to his mother, Leila brings to Miami the restaurant’s signature dishes, which are inspired by his mother’s Sunday feasts.
Hummus, muhammara, baba ghanoush and labneh are cold appetizer staples. Must-orders from the hot mezze include eggplant feta, where eggplant is grilled and served with fried pita, pomegranate seeds and molasses—with or without lamb—and batata harra, double spiced fries that can also double as a side for the mains. network.
Popular dishes include grilled branzino served with chickpeas, tomatoes and jalapenos, and the mixed grill of tawook, kebab and kafta. For vegans and plant lovers, mjaddara, the spicy Lebanese salad of lentils, split wheat, tomatoes and onions is a hearty dish, easily enjoyed with a side of sumac-dressed green beans and served with caramelized onions and bun.
The drink program is a combination of Leila’s signature cocktails—Lebanita (tequila, spiced pear, honey, almond, lemon) and Anne Hathaway (vodka, elderflower, cucumber, lime, rose mint)—and Winston’s on the Beach. Lebanese wines from Massaya and Chateau Musar are also available by the glass or bottle.
“Surf Club Chef Gino Betancourt traveled to Detroit over the summer and trained with us at Leila, where he specialized in all of our dishes and fully embraced Mediterranean cuisine. It will be behind Leila’s kitchen along with constant visits from team Leila and me,” shares Eid. “The goal is to bring the authentic Leila experience to Miami.”
Leila at The Surf Club is open Wednesday to Sunday from 6pm. until 21:30. Kosaka at The Surf Club is open from Tuesday to Sunday, with selected seats available from 5.30pm to 9.30pm. Reservations can be made for both residences through Open Table. Disabled seats are also available on request.