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“And in Closing….”


By Seth H. Bramson

Greetings, all!

I want to share with you, in this column, the “Author’s Afterword” at the end of our LOST RESTAURANTS of GREATER MIAMI, which, just a few days ago January 28th) was sent as a completed document to our publisher, The History Press, of Charleston. This book, incidentally, came in at 33,017 words and our next book for that publisher will be titled GROWING UP ON MIAMI BEACH, but more on that below.

But first, the title of this evening’s submission: We think so warmly of the late, great NEIL, GOD, the beloved and enormously missed Neil Rogers, he of blessed memory. Often, when people would call in, they would make their comments and then say, “…and in closing….” to which Neil would reply, “yesss?” and the answer that followed of course, was always expected to be—and always was—NEIL, GOD!

In any case, the book—my 33rd or 34th—is now “in” and I will let you all know soon as we have the publication date. I truly hope that you will all enjoy it, keeping in mind that, with the title as noted, it covers the entire county, not just Miami or Miami Beach, but, rather, everything, in its entirety, from north to south and from east to west. But now the mea culpa.

This book is not in the former or usual History Press format, which had been 180 to 220 photos. Rather, it is heavy (as you can see above by the number of words) on copy with a good fewer photos, in this case 121 total. Because of that I hope and trust that all of our readers will not just be forgiving if their absolute favorite was not included, but, also, realize and recognize that it simply was not possible to included thousands of venues and it is for that reason that I am hoping that they allow me to proceed with LOST RESTAURANTS of MIAMI and the LOST RESTAURANTS of Miami Beach. (The term “restaurants,” incidentally, includes the clubs.

To warm you up and tickle the cockles of your heart (and maybe even the sub-cockles!) I am pleased to share with you the Author’s Afterword, which I hope and trust you will enjoy. As I also hope that you can and do understand, we can’t share the chapters with you as you will need to buy the book so that you can read and indulge in them. So, without further ado, the Author’s Afterword from LOST RESTAURANTS of GREATER MIAMI:


Talk about opportunities to reminisce, what a trip down memory lane this has been for me, the only regret being that, with a limited number of photos assigned to this book and multi-thousands of Greater Miami images, including hundreds upon hundreds (and more!) of the local clubs and eateries of all kinds and types, the choice has been (almost) beyond difficult. (But, somehow, we managed!)

Regretfully, some of the great ones (maybe a good few!) had to be left out, but, hopefully, and as noted in this book’s introduction, Arcadia and The History Press will hopefully elect to have me do Miami Beach (the beach side of Biscayne Bay from the tip of South Beach to the Sunny Isles Beach/Golden Beach line) with a separate book for just Miami, and those, as was this book, will be yet more of these extraordinary and outstanding journeys through local history.

Although the following individuals are now in culinary heaven, and were unable to provide me with material for this book, during the time I operated a number of fine and elegant club and restaurant operations I became friendly with a good few of the finest food and beverage people who have ever walked this earth. It is, to me, absolutely essential that I mention those wonderful men and women who were not only my mentors in the business (almost thirty years managing high grade restaurants and clubs in Miami and New York) but who I was able to turn to anytime I had a question or needed assistance with any issue or problem that I might have been having.

My sincere gratitude goes to Wolfie Cohen, for whom Bennett’s and my dear mother worked as a night cashier at the Rascal House for many years and who told me quite clearly that I should never hesitate to ask him anything at all anytime I had a question. There was no better teacher than my friend and partner, the late, great Lloyd Apple, for it was he who taught me what elegance and refinement in restaurant operation really meant. Goldie and Charlie Linksman, of Pumpernick’s, were never too busy to stop and proffer advice, always warmly and with a smile. Artie English, father of my Miami Beach High classmate and now dear friend, Jane English Nighbert, was amazing, never hesitating to be of help, and, of course, I cannot leave out another wonderful man, Saul Kaplan, who, in partnership with Wolfie, owned the Newport and Roney Pubs. He was “only terrific.” I owe each of them a great deal for all they did for me during those many years in “the business.”

The final kudo (or kudos) must go to my previous and current history department chairs at Barry University in Miami Shores, Doctors George Cvejanovich and Sean Foreman, whose support and encouragement has been total, and to them I am most grateful.

And now, as we come to the end of this volume, we hope that not only did you enjoy the reading and the images but that, along the way, you got hungry enough to stop and have “a nosh” while warmly remembering the great times, the great food and the great fun you and your family and friends had at the lost restaurants of Greater Miami. Be—and stay—well, and as a famous personage was wont to say, “live long and prosper.”


I thought that we would get into the upcoming GROWING UP ON MIAMI BEACH, but I am really “schvach” (tired) and it has been a long day, between being up very early, working on the book here, then going to Barry University to teach my two HIS 150: Contemporary World History classes, then back here to the house to continue and to complete the book. Tonight involved photographing items for ebay and working on the blog for you all and Mr. Berkwitt, so bear with me and we’ll “talk about” the next book next time.

OH! One last item: I will be at the JCC in West Boca this coming Monday night, February 3rd at which time I will present THE HISTORY OF DISCRIMINATION IN GREATER MIAMI beginning at 7:30 PM. Hope to see some of you there, and, as always, with warmest good wishes. Be—and stay—well.

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