MIAMI -- Benoit, or Ben, Rablat and Sandy Sanchez are the owners of Normandy Gourmandy.
How it all began:
They both worked for The James Beard Award-winning pastry chef Nancy Silverton in 2012 at her California restaurant Osteria Mozza. Sandy was a hostess and Ben was a server.
"He was the in the process of selling a restaurant that he owned and was the chef at in Venice," Sanchez said. "He's got the hustle. He's working all the departments and I thought, 'This is the one.'"
Rablat was also smitten.
"Her energy obviously," he said. "lt's not one bubble. It's 10,000 bubbles. It's like a bottle of champagne. Like a magnum of champagne."
Sadly, Sandy's brother passed away and in 2014 they moved back to Miami.
"I wanted to be with my parents during that time," she said. "I knew to do nothing else but to be in the restaurant industry."
One day she spotted a little place in a strip mall.
"It's by a park and across the lake in a town called Hialeah. La Fresa Francesa , a traditional French restaurant, was born through hell and high water," she said.
The restaurant is a huge success.
Yeah, We're still here eight years later," she said laughing.
In 2018 ,they opened Silverlake Bistro off of 71st in North Beach.
"Ben really wanted to express himself and what he had learned in California," Sandy said.
"More like burgers and, you know, just more continental cuisine," he said.
Silverlake Bistro is now a true locals favorite.
They married in 2021.
How it's going:
The power couple has a new culinary venture with the recent opening of their European Style Market "Normandy Gourmandy" just down the street from Silverlake Bistro.
The couple, who live in the neighborhood, describe it as equal parts Napa Valley tasting room, gourmet market and quirky gift shop. One thing the couple insists will define Normandy Gourmandy will be accessibility.
Ben insists that "gourmet" need not translate to expensive.
- Normandy Gourmandy is located at 932 71st Street, Miami Beach.
- Hours of operation are Wednesday to Sunday from 12 p.m. to 9 p.m. and metered parking is available.
- For more information, call 786-536-2334
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