Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Art Basel and The Betsy: Miami Art & Steak Frites

North America’s most comprehensive international contemporary art fair, with over 260 galleries from 30 countries showcasing works by more than 4,000 artist, Art Basel Miami Beach draws more than 77,000 art dealers, artists, collectors and aficionados to Miami during the fair held this year from December 7-10. It’s also spawned more than 20 satellite fairs, as well as parties and events galore, when the entire city turns into a canvas for ephemeral installations and art happenings such the flying sculpture by Studio Drift, an autonomous swarm of illuminated drones imitating a flock of birds above the ocean at the Faena Hotel in Miami, Art Basel refers to the fair held at the Miami Beach Convention Centre, but the spirit of Art Basel lives in venues big and small throughout the city hosting satellite fairs, glittering parties and events in a week that’s become known as Miami Art Week. The Convention Center space is only the beginning of the whirlwind week of art and parties that’s perfectly suited for Miami.

A sister fair of the original, founded in Switzerland in 1970, the Miami Beach edition has been an annual fixture in early December since 2002. The brainchild of a trio of Swiss gallerists, Ernst Beyeler, Trudi Bruckner and Balz Hilt, their vision brought together the artists they represented, as well as collectors, curators and critics from all over the world for the first Art Basel in Switzerland. Their vision was a success and over 16,000 people attended the first fair. Miami was selected as an ideal second destination with its unique position at the nexus of North America and South America. Over the years, with the boon from Art Basel, Miami has become a thriving year round arts destination in its own right with a vibrant gallery scene, as well as Wynwood, one of the largest open-air art districts in the world, with more than 70 galleries and countless murals and outdoor works spanning around one square mile. Arriving to spend for a few days with our dear friends Manita and Randy, we were given a privileged view into Miami's thriving art and dining scene during one of its biggest weeks. 

'La Bette au Bichon' by Ida Tursic and Wilfred Mille from Galerie Max Hetzier - Berlin | Paris

Untitled by Julien Schnabel, 1992

Jean Arp painting being sold through Galerie Thomas - Munich

Homme au Maillot by Picasso 1965

'Brull: Pfernanndon' by Joanton Meese represented by Galerie Krinzinger | Vienna

'Brull: Pfernanndon' detail

'The Smoking Image' tapestry by Laure Prouvost through Lisson Gallery

Metachrome (cut-outs after Matisse) by Vik Muiz, 2017

'La Parpluie Jaune' by Miryam Haddad 2017 through Art Concept | Paris

An oasis of calm and banquettes to sit on, amidst the multitude of galleries, booths and artists

Exterior of The Betsy Hotel in South Beach Miami, during Art Basel

The elegant modern LT Steak & Seafood by celebrated chef Laurent Tourondel

2015 Albarino from Licia, Spain

Enormous hot fluffy popovers

Seafood Ceviche “Leche de Tigre” with octopus, snapper, shrimp, scallops, coconut
milk citrus, cilantro, onion, yuzu, and chili oil

Burrata Salad with spicy arugula, romesco and grilled bread

10 oz Filet Mignon

Hand Cut Parmesan Frites with Truffle Aioli

Green Wilted Spinach

Charred Bone-in Short Ribs with arugula, jalapeño, chimichurri and grated horseradish

Thick and delicious, the short ribs were being enough to feed two

The roof of The Betsy with super moon over Miami Beach

Grilled Vegetable Bruschetta
Serves 10
Recipe courtesy of chef Laurent Tourondel

6 cups lightly packed basil leaves 
6 garlic cloves 
3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil 
1 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano 
Salt Freshly ground pepper

2 red bell peppers halved lengthwise 
2 yellow bell pepper halved lengthwise 
2 yellow squash halved lengthwise 
2 zucchini halved lengthwise 
1 large sweet onion, sliced 1/4 inch thick 
3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing 
Salt and freshly ground pepper 
5 large ripe tomatoes, diced 
1 small red onion, thinly sliced 
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice 
1/4 cup chopped parsley 
3 tablespoons sherry vinegar 
2 tablespoons minced garlic 
1 tablespoon thyme 
Ten 1-inch slices of country bread
4 oz ricotta salata, thinly sliced, for garnish

Light a grill. In a food processor, mince the basil and garlic, then add the oil and process to a paste. Transfer to a bowl and fold in the grated cheese. Season the pesto with salt and pepper. Brush the bell peppers, squash, zucchini and sweet onion with oil; season with salt and pepper. Grill the vegetables over moderately high heat, turning once, until charred and just tender. Discard the charred skin from the peppers. Cut the grilled vegetables into 1-inch squares and transfer to a large bowl. Add the tomatoes and red onion. In a small bowl, whisk the 3/4 cup of oil with the lemon juice, parsley, vinegar, garlic and thyme. Season with salt and pepper, pour it over the vegetables and toss. Brush the bread on both sides with oil. Grill over moderately high heat, turning once, until toasted, 2 minutes. Spread each toast with a rounded tablespoon of the pesto, then top with the grilled vegetables and the ricotta salata and serve.

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