Imagine eating food picked at its absolute freshest glory, completely absent the taste of preservatives or masked by an excess amount of sauce or salt. Imagine a place where chefs and farmers worked together, diligently planning every flavor combination on your plate to deliver a culinary experience second to none. Imagine every tender morsel was grown with care, raised with love, and prepared with passion.
At The Brick in Downtown Dadeland you no longer have to imagine.
Farm to table is not a new concept, but it is safe to say no one has figured it out quite like Corey Bousquet, owner of The Brick, American Kitchen & Bar.
Bousquet discovered his passion for the hospitality business at the age of 14, working for a neighbor in Long Island who owned a restaurant that lived on a two-acre farm. It was this neighbors mother who became his first example, going out into the fields every morning to pick the freshest fruits and vegetables for the next-day meals. Although she was not the chef, she took great care to ensure everything they served was the absolute best.
Eventually, Bousquet left the restaurant on a farm and took off to college. Although his early passion was in the hospitality business, he chose to pursue a degree in education. As he learned the importance of teaching, he realized that food education was scarce and decided to find a solution to this terrible problem. Drawing from his early experience he decided to take a fresh approach to the restaurant business.
One of The Brick’s founding principles is to not only serve the freshest locally sourced foods but to educate its customers on what they are and where they come from. Bousquet makes sure his staff is fully prepared to explain every fruit, vegetable, and protein that goes on a plate by taking them along to meet the farmers he sources his foods from. This intimate relationship with his suppliers ensures that The Brick has a constantly revolving menu, catered along what farmers are growing seasonally.
Although owning a restaurant was always his dream, he never became a chef. As he began putting together the foundation of what would be his very own place, he knew he would need some help, so naturally, he sourced local talent, Chef Allen Susser. Together, they developed the relationships with farmers that supply The Brick with the food they serve today.
Food isn’t the only thing that stands out at The Brick, guests are sure to be impressed by the rustic decor, providing a true farm home feel to anyone dining in. Designed with humor in mind, clearly seen as you pass the front door and spot potted mint properly labeled “Mojito in training.” A fresh addition to the craft cocktails served up during happy hour, paired with farm fresh bites from their specialty bar bites menu The Brick has created one of the most incredible happy hours in town.
The brick and wood decor work well with the fresh herbs hanging on the walls. Herbs that are replaced every other day by Uriah’s Urban Farms, as they are not only decorations but ingredients in the food they serve as well.
Bousquet’s biggest validation came six months after they opened their doors, in the form of a letter. Slow Food, an organization that promotes local food and sustainably sourced restaurants, reached out to certify The Brick as a true Farm to Table establishment. This also presented a new opportunity, one that was very close to The Brick’s own mission and passion, to provide local schools with their own garden, This community building project will allow young students to learn how to plant, grow, and harvest their own food as well as the importance of balancing a diet and knowing exactly what goes into your body.
Having passed the difficult validation process of Slow Food, Bousquet and The Brick will be selecting a local school in South Florida and be planting a garden for its children to tend.
The Brick American Kitchen & Bar is located at 8955 SW 72 Place. Specialty Bar Bites menu is available Monday-Friday until 7 p.m. The website is www.thebrickmiami.com and it can be found on Facebook @TheBrickMiami and Instagram @The_Brickmiami.