Casa Vigil — a Michelin and green Michelin-starred restaurant located on a winery and set amidst vineyards — opened in Mendoza, Argentina in 2015. The restaurant spotlights seasonal, local ingredients, including many sourced from its on-site garden, as well as top-ranked wines from winemaker Alejandro Vigil. Now, Casa Vigil is taking its concept to new environs with a just-opened outpost in Miami.
“Miami is a city that is evolving and has been increasingly attracting people who seek unique and cultural experiences,” Casa Vigil partner Nicolas Boffi said, noting that restaurants, artists and sporting events have been establishing a presence in Miami, which in turn has promoted an influx of people from around the world who want to partake in city life, including Argentinian culture.
“We believe Argentina as a brand is expanding its presence in Miami and want to ensure Casa Vigil is a part of that expansion,” Boffi said.
Casa Vigil is located in Upper Buena Vista and has 150 seats across two floors and three distinct spaces. La Cava is the main dining room, which is also home to a wine cellar containing more than 700 labels. El Patio is the outdoor terrace, and El Cielo is a rooftop terrace that’s set to open this month. There are also two 12-seat bars, and Casa Vigil has plans to open a market within the restaurant that will feature wines from around the world.
The restaurant was designed by Mico Design and Argentinian architect Ignacio Márquez, and its multi-space approach takes inspiration from Dante’s “Divine Comedy.”
Chef Cesar Gonzalez Aznar leads the kitchen. Diners can choose a five-course tasting menu with three levels of wine pairings or order à la carte. Dishes include empanadas, tablas (Argentinian charcuterie), and grilled meats, with select plates including prawn carpaccio, buffalo burrata, rib eye Milanesa, a 40-day dry-aged braised Angus costilla (a beef ribs cut), Chilean sea bass, and black rice with clams and shrimp.
Naturally, wine plays an important role in the restaurant. Boffi noted that Argentina is mostly known for its Malbec, but Alejandro Vigil has been focusing on other varietals, such as Cabernet Franc, and Semillon, which are all available at the restaurant.
Guests can also participate in wine tastings with sommelier Miguel Martinez, who pours wines for novices who want to learn, as well as connoisseurs who want to taste rare and collectible labels.
Boffi said that the restaurant has taken inspiration from the Mendoza location’s respect for quality and local sourcing, but it has adapted its menu to feature ingredients, techniques and flavors native to Miami. One day, that tactic might extend into other markets.
“We want to share our approach to wine and food in the markets that are also eager to experience authenticity, dedication and love for food and wine,” Boffi said. “Cities such as Mexico City, Sao Paulo and New York, among others, are potential next targets based on their vibrant and passionate people and experiences. We believe Casa Vigil would fill a gap in these markets based on its unique approach to a wine-focused dining experience.”