Sala’o Cuban Bar and Pescaderia has opened its doors in the heart of Miami’s Little Havana.
The Cuban bar and pescaderia aims to please locals and tourists alike. The restaurant was conceptualized by owners Eliesteban Mena and Oscar Rodriguez who also started Old Havana Cuban Bar and Cocina — a staple in Little Havana just a few blocks away.
The name Sala’o was born from an Ernest Hemingway novel, The Old Man and the Sea. Hemingway spent many years in Cuba, which drove Mena and Rodriguez to create an eatery to pay homage to the writer. As patrons step foot into the 2,300-square-foot restaurant, they will feel as if they have traveled back to the 1940s and entered Ernest Hemingway’s home.
With a cozy, yet opulent living room feel, the eatery is adorned with crystal chandeliers, marble accents and wooden finishes. Sala’o aims to welcome 85 guests with indoor and outdoor seating available and a welcoming atmosphere. The 30-foot bar will be focused on classic Cuban cocktail recipes and will sit 15 guests, who will be entertained by modern Cuban-inspired live music on an elevated wooden stage.
Sala’o owners searched for a chef who understood their vision to tie in Caribbean seafood flavors, while adding a modern touch to homestyle cooking. Cuban Chef Jorge Mas, who formerly worked in the Cayman Islands, Barcelonetta and NIU Kitchen, was the perfect fit to bring the menu to life.
“We want our dishes to bring memories. The menu is inspired by a small fishing village in Cojimar, Cuba, where even Ernest Hemingway used to keep his boat,” Mena and Rodriguez said.
The Pescadería will have fresh fish delivered daily from the Florida Keys to the outskirts of Miami, making each dish a “fresh catch,” and the oysters will be sourced from the East Coast.
Guests can expect a vibrant Happy Hour Monday through Friday, 4-8 p.m.; live music; daily food specials, and much more. Sala’o is open Sunday through Wednesday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.; Thursday through Saturday 11 a,n, to midnight.
Sala’o Cuban Bar and Pescadaria is located at 1642 SW Eighth St. For more information visit the website at www.salaorestaurant.com.