Inside The Broken Shaker's Lush On-Site Garden
Step onto the Freehand Miami campus and you're instantly transported into a canopied, tropical oasis where the cocktails are fresh and flowing, the food is flavorful enough for any critic, and the stretching, outdoor courtyard is more inviting than even your Nana’s house. Even on the disagreeable day I visited – complete with overcast, drippy skies and borderline oppressive humidity – I was swiftly enchanted by the space.
Freehand is home to award-winning, “best bar”-list making Broken Shaker, and the equally esteemed 27 Restaurant, located on the Freehand campus in a historic house decorated so spectacularly you forget about the outside world. The bar and restaurant combo is the dreamchild-turned-thriving reality of Gabriel Orta and Elad Zvi, who boast over 25 years of industry experience.
To give you a better feel of the space, Broken Shaker and 27 were created by Orta and Zvi with the intention of providing casual, laid-back lounging grounds for Miami visitors and inhabitants. Consider it a getaway, if you will, from the loud, fast-paced, dress-code doused clubs for which Miami is known.
I went with the mission of touring the impressive onsite garden. With Orta as my guide, we picked, plucked and tasted various ingredients, ranging from fragrant pea flowers to hibiscus-cranberry leaves to mango trees, passion fruit trees, mulberry trees, plush herb splays and picture-perfect okra. Orta talked me through everything – thoroughly vetted in every single item growing on his campus – and shared the ways he uses them in his bitters, syrups, juices and restaurant plates.
We then wandered into Broken Shaker, where Orta crafted an on-the-spot cocktail from some of our garden findings. The drink consisted of cranberry-hibiscus leaves, kaffir limes, gin, lemon juice, freshly pressed watermelon and a pea flower for garnish.
Bartender Gabriel Orta will whip up cocktails on the spot from the bar's verdant garden. This one contains cranberry-hibiscus leaves, kaffir limes, gin, lemon juice, freshly pressed watermelon and a pea flower garnish.
Freehand Miami is located at 2727 Indian Creek Drive, Miami Beach, Florida, 33140. If you can’t make it to the beach, Orta and Zvi have another space located in Chicago.