Smorgasburg, the largest open air food market in America with locations in New York and Los Angeles, is launching in Miami in the heart of Wynwood, 2612 NW Second Ave., in March.
A play on the Swedish word “smorgasbord,” meaning a wide array of foods, and the location for the market’s debut in Williamsburg, upon opening in 2011, Smorgasburg instantly became a popular destination for New Yorkers regularly drawing upwards of 10,000 weekend visitors in search of a great afternoon of eating, drinking and meeting up with friends.
At the same time, the market served as an affordable starting point for food vendors wanting to test out their concepts for a large audience without the overhead and risk of a brick-and-mortar restaurant. Known as the place to go for creative, often groundbreaking food and drink, the concept’s Williamsburg success led to a Los Angeles expansion in 2016, satellite locations in Jersey City and Lower Manhattan and annual pop ups in Sao Paulo and Japan, making Smorgasburg a global phenomenon.
Gaston Becherano Cohen, owner of Omotenashi Group, a collection of hospitality driven enterprises that includes Aventura Gardens Market, Bonsai Café, and Motorcycle Matcha, is the man bringing Smorgasburg to Miami.
His first exposure to the concept was as a vendor in New York, where he launched the first iteration of Bonsai, selling kakigori — hand-cranked Japanese shaved ice. The popularity he experienced with Bonsai at Smorgasburg paved the way for a brick-and-mortar restaurant on the Lower East Side, and that’s the type of opportunity he is interested in extending to Miami’s culinary community. Born in Mexico and raised in Miami, he has spent the past few years getting to know the community and believes the time is ripe for Smorgasburg Miami.
According to Becherano Cohen, “Over the past couple of years, the culinary scene of Miami has evolved at a breakneck pace. There are dozens of new underground food concepts in Miami that are top-class. We are bringing Smorgasburg to Miami to provide the right spotlight and conditions for these vendors to flourish and grow and to build a market that represents the talent and diversity of the South Florida food scene. At its core, Smorgasburg allows vendors to launch their own successful food concept without having to take the risk and undergo the headaches associated with opening up a brick and mortar.”
Smorgasburg Miami will be open on Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and will occupy prime real estate in the epicenter of Wynwood — adjacent to the Wynwood Walls, the 50,000-square-foot park-like setting will ultimately host 60 food vendors and about 10 interesting retail vendors.
Visitors will enter Smorgasburg on either NW Second Avenue or 26th Street. Vendors will be positioned around the perimeter of the space with central seating comprised of different colored picnic tables. The bar area will have its own seating and be located on the southwest corner of the market.
Representative of Becherano’s philosophy of By Miami, For Miami, the bulk of the vendors will be local with a smattering of some beloved concepts that were hatched in Brooklyn and
LA. Some of the confirmed vendors visitors can expect to see include:
Ted’s Burgers • @teds_burgers (Miami-based)
Drinking Pig BBQ • @drinkingpigbbq (Miami-based)
Sandwiches from Eleventh Street Pizza • @eleventhstreetpizza (Miami-based)
The Sister Yard • @thesisteryard (Miami-based)
El Diner Latino by the team behind La Natural • @eldinerlatino (Miami-based)
The Maiz Project • @themaizproject (Miami-based)
Bona Bona Ice Cream • @bonabonaicecream (NYC-based)
Becherano Cohen has been searching for vendors for the past year and has discovered quite a few concepts that will surprise and delight visitors. Now is the time for local culinary talent interested in being part of Smorgasburg to submit an application here as the market gears up for its March opening — in New York and Los Angeles, thousands of applications from vendors cognizant of the path to success are submitted every year for just a handful of vacancies.
For more information visit, www.smorgasburgmiami.com.