Golf star Ernie Els is taking his culinary interests to Miami. The Jupiter resident known as “The Big Easy” is set to open a downtown area restaurant inspired by his South African roots and passion for wine.
The Big Easy Winebar & Grill by Ernie Els is expected to open Nov. 3 at the upcoming Brickell City Centre complex.
The announcement came this week from the Miami-based Grove Bay Hospitality Group, which partnered with the Hall of Famer and plans a 200-seat restaurant inspired by Els’ “lifestyle and spirit.”
The upscale-casual grill restaurant will carry the flavors (and wines) of the Western Cape region of Els’ native South Africa. A South African native chef with extensive experience in American restaurants will command the kitchen, creating comfort dishes from Els’ motherland.
On Chef Maryna Frederiksen’s menu: unusual meats like sprinkbok (gazelle) loin and ostrich filet, “bobotie” spring rolls (stuffed with traditionally spiced ground beef curry), “sosatie” mini skewers and grilled boerewors (a sausage that is said to be Els’ favorite).
Yes, there will be burgers, as well as Florida seafood and fish, and universal dishes like lobster risotto.
For the pairing, there will be a variety of Ernie Els Wines, which the golfer produces with winemaker Louis Strydom. Perhaps this is what Els is most excited about.
“One of the really wonderful things about Big Easy Winebar & Grill is the opportunity it gives Louis and me to share our passion for wine and to introduce our portfolio of wines, of which we’re extremely proud, to a wider audience,” Els said via news release.
All this in a setting reminiscent of the Western Cape, with imported wood touches, clay pottery, white brick walls and leather seating.
Miami will be the first U.S. location for the Big Easy concept, which has three locations in South Africa and Dubai.
The restaurant is expected to open Nov. 3 at the upcoming Brickell City Centre in Miami’s financial district, near downtown. It will serve a weekday lunch from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., dinner nightly from 4 to 11 p.m. and Sunday brunch from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.