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The ‘Griselda’ Creator’s Miami

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The magic of Miami is that “you’ll be able to nonetheless uncover locations,” mentioned the author and producer Eric Newman. “It doesn’t really feel like folks have a chip on their shoulder. There’s a wholesome civic pleasure and gratitude.”

Mr. Newman, who created the Netflix present “Narcos” and produced “Griselda,” starring Sofia Vergara, has, over time, spent months at a time on location in Miami. To Mr. Newman, a California native, the attraction of this southern Florida playground isn’t simply what it’s — it’s additionally what it’s not. “There’s an appreciation in Miami that you just don’t see elsewhere,” he mentioned. “Perhaps it’s as a result of lots of people right here got here from elsewhere. Perhaps you got here to flee East Coast winters, otherwise you got here to flee Castro, otherwise you got here to flee taxes. Folks in Miami are genuinely completely happy to be right here.”

Mr. Newman, 53, produced the Academy Award-winning film “Kids of Males” and, extra lately, was the chief producer of “Painkiller” and “Narcos: Mexico.” He favors a facet of Miami not simply present in guidebooks. An after-hours salsa membership, a Xanadu hiding in plain sight, one of the best Cuban sandwich round: These are the secrets and techniques that Miami has slowly revealed to him.

“The range of Miami makes it really feel just like the least American metropolis, which is form of what makes it extremely American,” Mr. Newman mentioned. “It feels splendidly overseas and but uniquely American.”

Right here, his 5 favourite spots within the metropolis.

“La Trova is a present,” defined Mr. Newman. “The waiters are all immaculately dressed, they dance. You may inform that working there’s a profession, not a job.”

La Trova, owned by the grasp bartender Julio Cabrera and the chef Michelle Bernstein, is beloved for its impeccable drinks and its theatricality. Though the institution, in the midst of Little Havana, has a strong menu that leans closely towards empanadas, croquetas and Cuban fare, the specialties are mojitos and different cocktails — made with all of the flare of efficiency artwork. (La Trova was a James Beard semifinalist for its “Excellent Bar Program” in 2022.) The décor, just like the uniforms, is deliberate — a protracted bar lined with purple barstools, low lighting and a formidable wall of spirits.

“You are feeling like you might be in Havana in 1958. It jogs my memory of ‘The Godfather Half II,’” mentioned the showrunner. “It’s a spot the place you go to drink and find yourself consuming, or go to eat and find yourself ingesting.

“These sandwiches are phenomenal,” mentioned Mr. Newman, of the choices at Sanguich.

He favors the home specialty: the pan con lechon, a sandwich of shredded pork, pickled onions and garlic cilantro aioli on Cuban bread.

“I don’t know what number of of those sandwiches I’ve left in my life. You don’t need to eat one day-after-day and even each week at this age. However I’ve determined that any extra that I’m ever going to have are going to return from Sanguich.”

The sandwich store, its menu impressed by “pre-revolutionary Cuba,” has areas in Little Havana and in Little Haiti. The celebrities of the menu are, not surprisingly, the sandwiches, all of which have beef or pork (vegetarian choices are mainly milkshakes and fries). And the restricted hours serve a really helpful function, at the very least for Mr. Newman: “Fortunately, it closes at 6 p.m. — as a result of I’d get into horrible hassle in the event that they have been open late.”

“It seems to be like one thing that belongs in Newport, R.I., surrounded by stunning gardens,” mentioned Mr. Newman of Vizcaya Museum & Gardens, a sprawling property constructed as a trip house within the early 1900s by a rich businessman named James Deering.

In 1953, Vizcaya, which sits on the water in Coconut Grove, formally opened as a museum. A type of American Versailles, Vizcaya has acres of out of doors gardens, a dozen buildings impressed by Italian Renaissance and Mediterranean types, a restaurant, occasion areas and, naturally, secret passageways all through.

“There’s one thing form of melancholy about it for me, like Xanadu in ‘Citizen Kane’ or the Hearst Citadel — type of monuments to oneself. However it’s stunning,” Mr. Newman mentioned.

Vizcaya has had many notable company over time, together with Ronald Reagan, Pope John Paul II and Queen Elizabeth II. “As a lot as I recognize the reveals, I like to type of wander across the gardens and get a bit misplaced,” Mr. Newman mentioned. “You may look out on the bay from this Gatsby-esque home and simply lose your self. I keep in mind liking the best way that felt very a lot.”

“I went right here for the primary time final night time, and it was superb — form of this bizarre, unusual, great expertise. My spouse and I walked into what seemed to be a hostel. There was a man behind a desk who was going over a invoice with some backpacker, and my spouse and I have been like, ‘this can’t be the place.’”

In truth, 27 Restaurant is a part of the Freehand Resort, an upscale hostel a few blocks from the Miami Seashore. “Then we’re on this pool space lit by tiki torches, and I lastly requested somebody, ‘Is there a restaurant right here?’ Across the nook, as you bought nearer, you heard how alive it was,” Mr. Newman mentioned.

The menu borrows from American South and Afro-Caribbean meals. The décor is eclectic and mismatched, the tables are communal, and “the oyster mushrooms are superb,” Mr. Newman mentioned. “So are the shrimp dumplings. We had three orders of them.”

“I’m 53, I don’t actually exit wherever anymore, however Miami has a special vitality,” mentioned Mr. Newman, whose favourite after-hours spot is Siboney Night time Membership in West Miami. The salsa membership, open Thursdays to Saturdays from 11 p.m. to five a.m., is “very no frills,” he mentioned. Its authenticity makes him a repeat customer.

“It’s not a type of locations that you’d stroll by it and go, ‘Oh, we’ve acquired to go in and see what’s happening,’” he mentioned. “It’s fully Latin and there’s one thing transportive about it.”

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