Summer à la db Bistro Moderne

Jennifer Suskin |
Culinary Personalities

DiningOut drills the db Bistro Moderne Miami team on summer eats and drinks.


DiningOut: What’s your go-to summer cheese and wine pairing?

Sommelier Christopher Birnie-Visscher: When it comes to pairing wine with cheese, Champagne is always a go-to option. The natural acidity found in Champagne works really well with many cheeses like Humboldt Fog and a Blancs de Blanc. Plus, Champagne is a great way to cool down in the summer.


DO: What are your edible/drinkable secrets to staying cool in the summer? 

CBV: In the Miami summer heat, it’s the perfect time to explore crisp, cool wines. Rosé is a great summer wine that can be enjoyed with or without food. Every major wine region produces rosés and the best part is the price. You can get a delicious rosé for under 20 dollars. It’s a dry, refreshing, and delicious choice to enjoy with friends and family at summer picnics.


DO: What ingredients will you be focusing on, and what are some dishes you’d like to highlight from your summer menu? 

Executive Chef Jason Pringle: When I was creating this menu I starting thinking about seasonal and classic light fare. Summertime is perfect for tomatoes, mangoes, and stone fruits. We have brought back some Daniel Boulud summer classics like our Tomato Tarte Tatin, Melon and Shrimp Salad (recipe follows), or the Nine Herb Mezzaluna.     

We also just kicked off our dbQ—a daily barbecue from 5-8pm in the lounge and terrace that runs through August 29.


DO: What's your favorite fruit, vegetable, and protein? How do you like to prepare these picks at home and at db Bistro?

JP: Cherries, peaches, melons, stone fruits, and seafood are some of my favorites for summer. When I’m cooking at home, I keep things simple with just salt, pepper, and olive oil or lemon juice. I always prefer to grill or roast my vegetables and seafood when the weather starts heating up. 

At the restaurant, I still keep it simple, but my presentation is more upscale than when I’m at home. Instead of just grilling my vegetables and fruits, I like to pickle them at the restaurant to make the freshness last all year long. I tend to have more equipment at the restaurant to be creative with each dish and its flavors.


DO: What would you cook for a Bastille Day celebration?

JP: Classic summer French dishes come to mind. It’s hot in France during that time so rosés are a must and seafood, of course. I’m thinking mussels, shrimp, oysters, clams, grilled fish, and vegetables.  


Melon Salad with Lemongrass Shrimp from Executive Chef Jason Pringle of db Bistro Moderne Miami

serves four


Lemongrass dressing:
6 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tsp finely grated peeled ginger
2 tsp finely chopped lemongrass
zest of 1 lime
freshly-squeezed juice of 2 limes
1/8 tsp Tabasco
salt and freshly ground white pepper

1-1/2 lbs. large shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 ripe honeydew melon
1 ripe, small, round red watermelon
1 Tbsp finely chopped purple basil leaves, plus additional small leaves
1 Tbsp finely chopped cilantro leaves, plus additional small leaves
salt and freshly ground white pepper


For the dressing: In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, ginger, lemongrass, lime zest and juice, and Tabasco in a small bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside.

For the salad: Cook the shrimp in a medium saucepan of boiling salted water for 3-5 minutes. Drain. When cool enough to handle, slice lengthwise in half. Cut the honeydew and watermelon in half. Cut away the rind, and remove the seeds. Cut the melons into 1/8-inch-thick slices. Remove the watermelon seeds (it’s okay if the slices don’t stay intact). Using a cake ring or glass that is slightly smaller than the mouth of a 14-16-ounce martini glass or Champagne coupe, cut 16 slices from the watermelon, and 16 slices from the honeydew. Save the nicest 4 watermelon slices for the top.

To serve: Set out four 8-12-ounce capacity martini glasses or Champagne coupes.

Layer two slices of watermelon and honeydew in each glass, lightly sprinkling each melon layer with lemongrass dressing, chopped basil, chopped cilantro, salt, and pepper. You may need to trim the melon slices so they fit neatly into the glasses, which should be half-full at this point. Divide the shrimp among the glasses, arranging them in concentric circles. Season the shrimp with dressing, basil, cilantro, salt, and pepper.

Layer the glasses with the melon in reverse order: the honeydew, and then the watermelon, seasoning each layer as before. Top each salad with a reserved watermelon slice and sprinkle lightly with dressing, basil, cilantro, salt, and pepper. Garnish each salad with a basil and cilantro leaf.  Refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving (the melon and shrimp taste best when well chilled).


Wine Pairing: The Chilean 1999 Santa Rita Reserva Sauvignon Blanc’s high acidity, low alcohol content, and tropical fruit scent add zing to the mellowness of the honeydew and cantaloupe. A more elegant choice would be the 1998 Kendall-Jackson Vinter’s Reserve Chardonnay from Sonoma, California, whose rich toffee and butterscotch flavors retain a hint of fruitiness, keeping it lively on the palate.

Sourced from “Daniel’s Dish: Entertaining at Home with a Four Star Chef,” by Daniel Bouloud (Filipacchi Publishing, 2003)


Summer dbQ

db Bistro Moderne brings back its popular dbQ for the second year in a row. Through August 29, dbQ will be available daily in the lounge and terrace from 5-8pm and on Fridays, guests will have the opportunity to mingle with Executive Chef Jason Pringle as he mans the grill and shares grilling tips. The menu features barbecue items with a db twist including Grilled Oysters with spicy garlic butter and Baby Back Ribs with spoon bread. The special “Barbecue Tour” section will change bi-weekly and include regional barbecue from around the world. Happy hour prices will be available on all cocktails.


225 Biscayne Boulevard Way