7338 N.W. Miami Ct., Little River
In a retail landscape heavily crowded with luxury brands, Kristen Cole is bringing an earthier, lighter, more artisanal selection with the opening of TenOverSix in Little River. Cole is known for her great eye and understated finds for women, men, and kids, but the focus here is really on women’s accessories and home goods. There’s a smattering of ready-to-wear, too: Pieces from Rachel Comey and Jesse Kamm share floor space with tiny sweatshirts from Boy + Girl and Misha & Puff, while the glass cabinets are lined with Gabriela Artigas earrings and Fort Standard bottle openers.
Sherwoods Bistro & Bar
8281 N.E. 2nd Ave., Little River
Sherwoods has a key role in getting people to come to the Little River neighborhood just above Little Haiti and west of Biscayne Boulevard. The eccentric, eclectic décor is what first drew us in: The patterned tiles and peeling-paint bar make you feel like you’re in a ramshackle bar in Tuscany (if Tuscany had any ramshackle bars). Blue leather booths, ceiling fans and chandeliers, walls heaving with framed oddities—this is one of those places that has a lot to look at and it’s hard to decide where to set your gaze. The menu is every bit as colorful. Order the St. Tropez grilled cheese (with bacon, Brie, and apricot preserve) to share, maybe a bowl of coq au vin, and coconut-sugar caramelized plantains to finish. The heavy food feels counterintuitive to the climate, but the fans whirring overhead keep things cool.
Spinello Projects (Closed)
7221 N.W. 2nd Ave., Little River
Since 2005, Spinello Projects has been the heart of the revamped Little River area. In line with the city’s artistic DNA, Spinello is a space for experimental artists whose work isn’t suited for traditional galleries. The installations are meant to provoke, make you think, maybe make you rethink your positions on social and political issues. Spinello leans into artistic commentary however uncomfortable it may be. A recent example was Antonia Wright’s powerful exhibit intended to reflect the nature of police and riots in our society. The artist was standing behind a police barricade, a living sculpture, facing visitors, who were also in a confined, barricaded space.
Nina Johnson Gallery
6315 N.W. 2nd Ave., Little River
Little Haiti’s Nina Johnson Gallery favors emerging artists. Johnson is a well-respected curator in Miami and has a keen sense of the work that will resonate with the community. A prime example is Tom Scicluna’s first commercial show: Named for a fictional address next to the gallery, 6319 NW 2nd Avenue is meditation on Miami’s rapidly changing urban landscape. Scicluna gathered things he found near the gallery and exhibited them to reflect the social and political context. Another recent exhibit was Derek Fordjour’s Ritual—a series of paintings made from acrylic and oil painted on newspaper scraps. These portraits capture men of color in moments of reflection and deep thought, while the grittiness of the paper is intended to subtly echo the poverty of the artist's upbringing in Memphis.