It’s been whirlwind two years for Brad Kilgore since the opening of his restaurant, Alter, which has seemingly won every accolade under the sun including being tapped for The 21 Best New Restaurants in America for 2016 and The South’s 38 Essential Restaurants by Eater’s roving food critic, Bill Addison. Also in the past year, Kilgore has also opened Brava at the Adrienne Arsht Center, and come next year he plans to open two new restaurants in the Miami Design District.
The restaurants are named Ember and Kaido, respectively. Ember is described a wood-fire American bistro, while Kaido will be a Japanese-influenced lounge with a beverage program by Nico de Soto, who was recently nominated for International Bartender of the Year at the Spirited Awards for his Paris bar, Danico.
Eater Miami sat down with Kilgore to learn more about these concepts and what’s up next for Alter and Brava.
You just signed a lease on two new projects, can you tell me a little about them?
Well I’ve always wanted to do a wood-fire bistro. I mean, I’m from Kansas City, obviously I love smoke and barbecue. Ember is not a barbecue restaurant, by any means, but just that ability to cook over natural fire is always a beautiful thing. The idea of it being a “bistro” is just in the meaning of approachableness. Taking things that you recognize and giving them a creative touch, in order for it to be a new experience, although it’s comfortable and recognizable.
And then there’s a second restaurant?
Correct. Kaido is going to be a Japanese and Asian inspired cocktail lounge and restaurant. I definitely want us to be known for beautiful cocktails and also have fantastic food. The cuisine there is going to be a little bit lighter handed, as in, you can come there and order several dishes for your table. It’s going to have a lounge atmosphere, not a formal dining thing, and you can relax where you can order a few different plates. Some of those plates are going to be experiential, like sharing, in that aspect, because I want it to be a crowd friendly place. You go with a group of friends, or you stop in for lunch while you’re shopping in the Design District.