FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.

Miami, Florida, Atrio At The Conrad Miami, Chef Michael Gilligan

Oct 3, 2008
2008 / June 2008

Chef Michael Gilligan’s resume includes stints at Michelinstarred restaurants in France and England where he cooked for Princess Diana, so it’s no wonder guests who venture into Atrio at the Conrad Miami feel like royalty.

A graduate of The College of Food and Arts in Birmingham, England, Gilligan honed his trade in Europe before moving to New York City in the mid- 1990s where he gained notoriety first as sous chef as the 5-star, 5-diamond Ritz-Carlton Hotel and later at Tribeca Grill and Montrachet, two of the city’s most popular celebrity dining venues.

Before signing on as director of culinary operations at Conrad Miami, Gilligan solidified his reputation, opening Candela in New York City. He subsequently relocated to Key West where he operated an Indian eatery before returning to New York to earn rave reviews as the executive chef at Antonio’s Ristorante and Metro 53 Bar and Restaurant. In 2003, Gilligan headed to south again to wow critics at Miami’s Rumi.

These days the cutting-edge chef is working his magic at Atrio, the Conrad Miami’s chic 25th floor eatery where my 15-year-old niece, Meaghan, and I had the pleasure of dining during a girls’ getaway weekend fit for — you guessed it — a princess.


Atrio Salad Baby greens wrapped in cucumber with fried plantains, teardrop tomatoes and vanilla-jalapeño vinaigrette Serves 4

For the salad:
1 pound baby greens
2 European cucumbers, cut lengthwise
2 green plantains, cut lengthwise
6 red teardrop tomatoes, halved
6 yellow teardrop tomatoes, halved

For the fried plantains:
1 under ripe plantain, cut to ¼-inch slices and coated in flour
3 cups vegetable oil

In a deep fryer or deep saucepan, heat the oil to 375 degrees. Place the plantain slices into the oil, one at a time, using tongs to rotate while they brown to an even color and crispness (about 2 minutes). Place the fried plantain slices on a paper towel to drain.


For the jalapeño vinaigrette:
12/3 cups grape seed oil
2 cups rice wine vinegar
2 jalapeño peppers, membrane removed
3 Serrano chilies, seeded
2 vanilla beans, seeds only
2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon fresh ginger Salt and pepper, to taste

Combine all ingredients except the oil in a blender. When mixed well, slowly add the oil to make an emulsion. Season to taste.

PRESENTATION: Toss the baby greens with the vinaigrette (reserve some vinaigrette for tomatoes) and season lightly with salt and pepper. Place a round mold on a plate. Wrap 2 thin slices of cucumber around the inside of the mold. Fill the center with seasoned greens. Remove the mold. Season halved tomatoes with reserved vinaigrette. Alternating colors, place 3 halves of red tomato and 3 halves of yellow tomato on the plate circling the cucumber base. Insert a fried plantain slice between the cucumber circle and the greens on opposite sides of the salad.


Rum and black pepper-glazed filet mignon with Peruvian potato and chorizo sausage salad Serves 2

For the rum and black pepper glaze:
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
3 cups red wine
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
3 tablespoons cracked black pepper
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, finely grated
Kosher salt, to taste
1 cup dark rum
2 cups veal stock

Heat the oil in a small saucepan over medium-high heat until it is almost smoking. Add the onion and cook until soft (4 to 5 minutes). Add the garlic and grated ginger. Cooked an additional 2 minutes. Add the rum and reduce by half. Add the veal stock and black pepper. Season with salt. Cook until reduced to 1 cup (15 to 20 minutes). Cool to room temperature. Glaze may be covered and refrigerated for up to 1 day.


For the filet mignon:
2 10-ounce beef filets
Olive oil
Kosher salt, to taste

Preheat a gas or charcoal grill to medium. Brush the meat with olive oil and season with salt. Grill until well seared on one side (about 4 minutes). Turn the filets and baste with the rum and black pepper glaze. (Reserve some glaze for plating.) Continue grilling for 3 minutes. Turn again; baste and grill for an additional 2 to 3 minutes (10 minutes total for medium rare).


For the Peruvian potato and chorizo sausage salad:
¼ pound chorizo sausage, diced
1 cup diced onions
1 cup diced red peppers
1 cup Peruvian (purple) potatoes, diced and blanched
2 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
4 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and black pepper, to taste

In a large sauté pan, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil. When the oil is hot, render the chorizo for 3 minutes. Add the onions and peppers continue to sauté for 3 minutes. Add the potatoes and sauté for 3 minutes or until the potatoes are heated through. Season with salt and pepper. Add the vinegar and oil. Stir in the cilantro.

PRESENTATION: Mound the potato salad in the center of a plate. Place a cooked filet on top of the potato salad. Drizzle with rum and black pepper glaze.

Introducing

FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.

#globility

Insta Feed
Daily
Nov 25, 2022

Bottega il Buco and Max Rivera Papic Make Waves in Ibiza

One of Ibiza’s hottest restaurant destinations since its opening five years ago, Bottega il Buco, draws legions of fans with the addition of new head chef Max Rivera Papic, whose kitchen credits include skills honed under the tutelage of Alain Ducasse at The Dorchester, London.

Alaskan Wild Wonders by Celebrity Cruises

Experience the beauty of Alaska and save 60 percent off cruise fares on your second and fourth guests. Plus, drinks, WiFi and tips are all included.

Daily
Nov 25, 2022

Ski Season and Winter Getaways at Colorado Resorts

Ski season is around the corner. Now is the perfect time to plan your winter ski getaway. These Colorado resorts offer deals designed for skiers.

Daily
Nov 25, 2022

Give a Gift from Around the World this Holiday Season

This holiday season, give your loved ones a gift from around the world to create memories that last a lifetime.

75 Years Connecting the Americas

Copa Airlines is celebrating its 75th anniversary by showcasing a Boeing 737-800 NG in an aircraft livery that harkened back to the airline’s look in the 1990s. During that time, Copa Airlines launched an expansion of their network to become the Hub of the Americas®, changing the way to travel to and connect in our Continent.

Daily
Nov 24, 2022

Angama To Open Deluxe Lodge Near Kilimanjaro

Lodging and hospitality company Angama announced the November 2023 opening of Angama Amboseli, an intimate, 10-suite lodge set in Kenya’s private, 5,700-acre Kimana Sanctuary, against the iconic backdrop of Mount Kilimanjaro, located just across the border in Tanzania.

eFlyer News
Nov 23, 2022

Hilton to Bring First Waldorf Astoria Property to Costa Rica

Costa Rica prepares to welcome its first Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts property, slated to open in 2025. Waldorf Astoria Guanacaste will boast 190 guestrooms, as well as 25 Waldorf Astoria-branded residences, all offering sweeping views overlooking the ocean. A presidential suite will also grace the property.

Celebrity Cruises’ Spring Sale

There’s no better time to plan the vacation you’ve been missing. Step aboard with your better half, your friends or the whole family and reconnect, reunite and rejoice with 25 percent off cruise fares for all guests. We’ll also help everyone get there with 25 percent off airfare from 20 major gateways across the country or $100 savings per person on flights from all other gateways when you book your air travel using Flights by Celebrity.*

eFlyer News
Nov 23, 2022

Cayman Airways Connects West Coast Travelers with Grand Cayman

West Coast travelers can now enjoy easier, more efficient access to the Cayman Islands thanks to a new airlift option via Cayman Airways Ltd. As of Nov. 6, Cayman Airways operates nonstop service from Los Angeles International Airport to Owen Roberts International Airport in Grand Cayman at an introductory fare of $399.