Adding to Miami Beach’s hip, ever-growing sunset harbor neighborhood is a family-owned restaurant called Ofa.
The Brazilian eatery draws inspiration from the progressive regional dishes like picadinho and ceviche.
The kitchen is led by executive chef Flavia Carnicelli… who grew up surrounded by culinary role models… like her grandparents.
Carnicelli says she owes her appreciation of international cuisine and passion for gastronomy to her father, who made it a habit to bring back imported food and wine from his worldly journeys.
Now she’s in Miami bringing her passion for traditional Brazilian cuisine to Ofa.
“We want to have very traditional Brazilian food, but at the same time nice contemporary food,” says Carnicelli.
The owners of the restaurant— Felipe Ortiz and Carmen Rodriguez— asked Carnicelli to make the move from Sao Paolo. And it was something she was very excited about.
“I’m friends with Felipe and Carmen. They had this project and they invited me to do this with them. I’ve been to the Amazon and I’ve spent a lot of time in Brazil so I love Brazilian food,” adds Carnicelli.
First up in the kitchen— ceviche made with coconut milk.
“This is fresh fish, cut into pieces, with a little bit of salt, lemon juice and onions, cilantro and pepper we bring from Brazil. And coconut milk and the final touch is the sweet potato,” says Carnicelli.
Now to a hearty Brazilian staple— the picadinho.
Carnicelli describes the meal like this, “This is the meat and the sauce. We make the sauce with wine and rosemary, and tomato sauce, garlic and onions. Then I make the egg. First I start with the rice, the meat, the egg on the rice, bacon falafel, then kale, banana and bacon to decorate it. That’s it.”
The meal ended wit dessert— torta de caipirinha and guava cake. Ofa has a Miami Spice menu for both lunch and dinner. For more information, go to www.ofarestaurant.com