Michael’s Genuine ready to welcome customers

Cayman’s newest restaurant is
bustling with activity and it hasn’t even opened yet.

The management and staff inside
Michael’s Genuine Food and Drink are well aware of the hype surrounding this
restaurant and are working overtime to ensure they are ready when the doors
open to customers next week.

James Beard award winning
chef-restaurateur Michael Swartz‘s highly anticipated restaurant opens nightly
for dinner Wednesday, 16 June, with lunch service beginning Monday, 28 June.

He and his team of seasoned
veterans and new recruits are undergoing intense training sessions to make sure
his newest venture not only lives up the famous reputation of his Miami
restaurant, but that it exceeds it.

He and General Manager Charles Bell
have created a casual open bistro, unique menu, and becoming part of the
community forming strong partnerships.

“We will be working local farmers
and growers to integrate local product here, said owner Michael Swartz.

Head chef Thomas Tennent is not
only using local products in dishes, he’s taken it one step further and is
working with farmers to expand their options and try new things.

“If we can get a local farmer to
grow it we want a local farmer to do it so we can source it naturally”, said
Mr. Bell.

They’ve also worked with Department
of Tourism, Employment Relations and have gone into the schools to attract Caymanians
interested in working in the food industry, and so far according to Mr. Bell it
has worked.

“We were looking to hire
approximately 70 people, our 3 day job fair attracted over 160 applicants and
we had over 370 applications total for 70 positions. We’ve filled about 50
positions at this point and we are at about a 52 per cent hiring rate for
residents and Caymanians”.

It’s all in the name

“When we talk about genuine we want
to be genuine in all areas the food, the service, the staff, everything about
it”, said Mr. Bell.

True to their word, there’s nothing
pretentious about Michael’s. Located in Camana Bay on the crescent, World
renowned restaurant designer Carl Myers and Caymanian architect Joan Doak have
created a brightly, spacious, welcoming restaurant from the open kitchen and
large wood burning stove to the amazing pictures designed entirely out of
Guatemalan coins.

 Even the menu, which is broken down into
small, medium, large, extra large, and snacks is filled with a wide range of
familiar and unique comfort foods made with the freshest fruits, vegetables, and
other ingredients are meant to be shared by friends and family.

“We want you to come in and make it
your neighbourhood place. We want you to come in have a pizza, have a glass of
wine, have a bowl of potato chips and you know hang out, we want to be a neighbourhood
local bistro.” Said Mr. Bell.

 
Michael’s seats 75 people inside and 75 outside on the crescent
overlooking the water.

Dinner hours begin at 5:30pm 7 days
a week, Lunch will be served from 11:30am to 3pm Monday through Saturday
starting on 28 June, and beginning 11 July Sunday Brunches will be held from
11am to 3pm.

BUZMichaelopeningSTORY

Charles Bell General Manager of Michael’s Genuine Food and Drink stands in front of the open kitchen.
Photo: Sherry VanWey

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