It's been a month of firsts.
We met Nina Davuluri, the first Miss America of Indian descent.
Now The Ritz-Carlton Coconut Grove has launched the one-month-only Passage to India pop-up restaurant, the first of its kind in the Magic City.
You'll be forgiven for entering this place like you're on a pageant catwalk. The hotel’s signature checkered-floor restaurant is the perfect lead-in to the sultry, dimly-lit, exotic realm ahead, where flickering lanterns and free-flowing colorful fabrics hung from the ceiling surround your hidden leather booth.
Begin your subcontinental feast with spiced masala marinated shrimp in tomato and onion gravy (more things should be topped in tomato and onion gravy), followed by the mixed biryani full of marinated lamb, chicken, and shrimp cooked in basmati rice.
Then cool down the taste buds with melt-in-your-mouth warm dumplings served with vanilla ice cream.
Oh, and your month of firsts?
It might just apex on your visit if they bring back the camels and belly dancers from opening night.
A Passage to India Pop-Up Restaurant
at The Ritz-Carlton, 3300 SW 27th Ave., Coconut Grove
Price: 3 (out of 4)
Noise: 2 (out of 4)
Scene: A combo of afterwork suits and spice-craving foodies
Best bets: Masala shrimp; mixed biryani; gulab jamoon with vanilla ice cream
Hot seat: Tucked away in a hidden corner booth
Nearby: Sandbar Sports Grill; Monty’s; Lulu