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Changes at M Bar on Las Olas: Chefs Out, Lunch In

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Change is afoot at M Bar on Las Olas Boulevard -- already.
M bar, which opened just over a month ago as a sibling to longtime Las Olas staple Mancini's, began serving lunch yesterday.

But that's not the big news.

More notably, the brother/sister team of chefs --

who opened the place -- Kevin and Lauren Anderson -- have left.

Clean Plate Charlie learned the pair is in pursuit of financial backing

for a small Miami-based temple to molecular gastronomy. (If you're not

familiar with the deconstruction-heavy genre that features foods

that

have been run through centrifuges or injected with syringes, you may

want to do some Googling of French chemist Herve This, who pioneered the

movement, or Spanish chef Ferran Adria, who served the last meal at his famed restaurant el Bulli this past Saturday night. Molecular gastronomy has been a lightning rod among chefs, who have asserted that "it's not food" and that the term "doesn't exist.") 


A

source familiar with the split says the Andersons' departure is

amicable. "What inspired the chefs and what Mancini wanted didn't

correlate," the source said.

Jack Mancini himself told Clean

Plate Charlie, "It was time to change." He said Claudio Sandri, his chef

from Mancini's, will be running the kitchen in the short term and that

he will interview permanent replacements over the next couple of weeks. 


Whoever

Mancini hires will update the menu, adhering to the restaurant's

farm-to-table concept. "The Florida produce season is wiped out during

the summer's heat," said Mancini. "Come fall, we'll be able to use

produce from local farms again." Purveyors include Palmetto Creek Farm (for pork), Gary's Seafood,  and Paradise Farms (produce).


Mancini

confirmed that lunch debuted yesterday. The lunch menu -- featuring

burgers, flatbreads, pulled pork, and salads -- is  more casual than the

ambitious small-plates dinner menu the Andersons had introduced that

featured crispy pig ears, fresh creamed

hearts of palm with grilled octopus, and a sweetbreads riff on chicken

and waffles. (These items will remain on the dinner menu until a new

chef revamps it.)

The lunch menu features creativity in ingredient sourcing, combinations,

and condiments among a selection of flatbreads ($10 to $12) as well as

several new burger combos on brioche. (I'm into one topped with tomato,

sharp cheddar, and fried egg [$14].) Mancini recommends the grouper tacos

with lime and crème fraiche ($9). "It's a big piece of fish," he said.

And if you were wondering about the status of Mancini's: It's slated to reopen next door in time for the October boat show.

 
Follow Clean Plate Charlie on Facebook and on Twitter: @CleanPlateBPB.

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