Chef Omar Montero will unveil his newest sensation just in time for the holidays with the opening of Casa Ya’ax, his new indoor/outdoor culinary and cocktail haven in the heart of Wynwood. Positioned to further Wynwood’s well-earned reputation as one of the hottest neighborhoods in the world, Casa Ya’ax will be the sublime, sophisticated new sibling to his beloved La Santa Taqueria; delivering a transportive experience evoking the traditions, flavors, hospitality, and spirit of his native Mexico. Featuring an inspired menu founded on simplicity but elevated by technique; an inventive drinks program, a lush tropical design aesthetic, and live entertainment, Casa Ya’ax will bring Mexico by way of Montero to locals and visitors alike by year’s end.
“The idea for this restaurant has been with me for years,” says Montero, who credits his rich Mexican heritage as his creative North star. “If La Santa is my tribute to street food, then this will be a place where we can celebrate the rich, authentic flavors and dishes from across Mexico, highlighting our gorgeous coastal cuisine.”
The generous menu is still in development, but dishes in the pipeline for the opening include
Beef Short Ribs with demi-glace and three chilies; White corn and red quinoa with pork belly and rock shrimp; Tiger Shrimp with garlic; Aguachile Arrachera in black sauce, and an array of raw bar and grill items, including Takamori A5 wagyu, OMI wagyu, and USDA prime cuts, all available a la carte along with an array of delectable side dishes. More details to come.
From the kitchen to the bar, we go with eight signature drinks confirmed. Sure to be among the must-tries: the Sel Va Tik with gin, Bergamotto, Acqua Di Cedro, cucumber bitters and tonic; Casa Ya’ax’s take on the ubiquitous espresso martini, incarnated here as the Espresso Oaxaca, made with Bacanora Aguamiel, Giocondo Cabaret Cafe, licor 43, coffee, and Oaxacan chocolate shavings; and the Mexican Manhattan with El Tequileño Tequila, sweet vermouth and bitters. The restaurant will also feature a well-appointed bottle menu particularly rich with choice agave-based spirits and an array of Mexican wines not found elsewhere in Miami. This will no doubt come into play later in the evening when the restaurant’s lush patio comes to life as a lounge, complete with a live DJ, cool lighting, and, if needed, a cool misting system.
The dining room at Casa Ya’ax evokes a bohemian vibe complete with an earthy color palette that strikes a beachy counterpoint to the back patio’s jungle-like aesthetic; think lush landscaping coexisting with chic natural elements, from carved wood tables to woven rattan lampshades. No doubt the restaurant’s design elements seamlessly weave together, creating an inviting ambiance.
Chef/restaurateur Montero embarked on his culinary journey as a young man while his family’s catering business flourished. After completing his culinary training at the University Anahuac in Mexico City, he honed his skills at renowned establishments across Mexico. Venturing to the United States in 2010 at the age of 24, he immersed himself in fine dining, gaining extensive experience throughout Florida, Colorado, Minnesota, San Francisco, and Napa Valley, primarily focusing on high-end boutique hotels. Settling in Miami in 2010, Montero joined the culinary team at the award-winning Setai Hotel in Miami Beach. In 2014, he successfully launched La Veinte Deli & Café in downtown Miami but moved on in 2016 to develop and finally launch in 2017, La Santa Taqueria, first as a pop-up but later in its current incarnation as a brick-and-mortar restaurant.
Casa Ya’ax is located in Wynwood at 51 NE 24 Street, Suite 101. Metered street parking and valet will be available. Telephone: (305) 456-9258; For more information, visit casayaax.com. Reservations can be made via RESY. Follow on social media @casayaaxmiami.