Level8 Private Dining opened their sparkling new Miami kitchen last month and believe me when I say, they are changing the game of aviation caterers. They came onto the South Florida scene with the ambition of hiring a top tiered Chef with the right credentials and accolades to flip this world on it’s head, and they found that momentum and talent within Josh Wahler.
Josh is this enigmatic, charisma-driven force in the kitchen. I know this first hand because not only did I have the pleasure of meeting Josh, I got to taste his cuisine. But I will get to that shortly….
So who is Josh? Why is he important? What has he done? Let’s break it down.
- Extern at Gramercy Tavern
- Chef de Partie at Spice Market NYC
- Executive Sous Chef at Nobu
- Executive Chef at Milos Miami
Okay so his background is crazy impressive, but let me tell you how it directly translates to his cuisine and tastes, actually let Josh himself tell you..
“I have a true love and passion for the Asian cuisines, and then bring in other ingredients to change them around. Our Toasted Sesame Ponzu Chickpea puree is a great example… Take a normal Middle Eastern dish like hummus and transform it into something memorable”-Josh wahler
What Josh is referencing to above is the meta-named Hors d’oeuvres menu item “Homemade Dips“. For something that is simply, and rather aptly named, it over-delivers. Josh has cross-infused cultural flavors so much so that when a simple carrot or nugget of cauliflower is dunked into this unassuming dip, your mouth explodes with flavor and is left geographically UTTERLY confused, is this Middle Eastern? Is it Asian? WHO KNOWS [or cares] BECAUSE IT’S DELICIOUS.
Josh hails from the Greek restaurant powerhouse Milos so naturally he makes a killer Tzatziki but don’t take a Tylenol PM on the Spiced and Charred Eggplant Dip. I would use any vessel in my vicinity just to consume that Eggplant dip in mass quantities.
Okay so what else did I get to try while in the kitchen of Josh Wahler….
[Cage Free] Egg Frittata
Again, this name on the menu is just so underwhelming in comparison to what this dish is…. its the texture of an egg soufflé that is criminally creamy and light to the tongue but then doubles down with the savory herb roasted potatoes and buttery oyster mushrooms, tethered together with shaved Manchego cheese and parsley to brighten. This dish is a crowd pleaser and I would gladly, whole-heartedly, even eagerly serve this to my next guest departing out of South Florida.
Okay oatmeal, oats, overnight oats blah blah blah the trendy combination of oatmeal for breakfast being spun at us from different angles has gotten a bit overdone and it wasn’t very exciting to me until…
However, Josh’s overnight oats? Now thats a real game changer.
Flavors include coconut, maple, blueberries and pine nuts. I really couldn’t stop eating this one. I had to intentionally put my spoon down so as to not get too full. It was THAT good ( see photographic evidence above)
Caesar Salad [Reinvented]
How can one possibly reinvent the classic Caesar Salad? It’s the most general staple on every menu around the world.
Well leave it to Josh. He damn well did and I’ve been craving it ever since. In order to explain what is different about Josh’s Caesar salad, I have to also share another one of Josh’s core philosophies.
“My background has taught me how to properly work with an enormous variety of ingredients, and then I let my imagination and personal techniques run wild”-Josh Wahler
Now I can’t divulge every detail and ingredient on what makes this Caesar Salad so above the rest but on the surface he has upgraded your standard run-of-the-mill boring anchovy for Boquerones (The European anchovy, somewhat related to the herring) into the dressing itself followed by dropping in small charred pink Peruvian peppers affectionately named “Sweety Drops” and rounded up together with a fine toasted breadcrumb that caresses every lettuce leaf so a crouton-like texture and flavor never escapes a single bite.
Garlic and Herb Duck Confit (á la) Spiced Yuzu Soy Aioli
What I love about the “Land and Sea” Entree selection of the Level8 Miami menu is the interchangeability of the sauce to protein selection. Josh exhibits a wizard-like mastery over flavor profiles that your passengers can enjoy inflight by selecting any option from Sea or Land and trusting that whatever sauce you choose, will melt together in flavor heaven.
Naturally, my favorite sauce I tried in the kitchen that day was Josh’s Spiced Yuzu Soy Aioli ( I’m a sucker for soy anything!) but his others are not to be missed…
- Minted Chimichurri
- Cabernet Sauvignon and Thyme Demi-Glaze
- Leek Saffron Bisque
- Heirloom Tomato and Marcona Almond Pesto
….But don’t forget the Canapés or Petit Fours
These don’t need an explanation, I’ll just leave these photos here for you to drool.
Thank you again Chef Josh– I had an extraordinary time in your kitchen!
Ready to place your first order? Level8 is servicing the following airports OPF, MIA, FXE, FLL, BCT, PBI, TMB[email protected]