Experienced restaurateur Matias Pagano and The KAO Group – the minds behind South America’s renowned Sushi Club concepts, as well as KAO Sushi & Grill in Coral Gables and J&J Fresh Kitchen in Boca Raton – have officially opened the first KAO Bar & Grill container restaurant concept in the heart of Hallandale Beach. Ahead of the grand opening on Thursday, May 18, the owners hosted a special ribbon-cutting ceremony with live music, Argentine grilling stations and more. Representatives from Argentina and the City of Hallandale Beach, including City Manager Dr. Jeremy Earle, Mayor Joy Cooper, City Commissioner Joy Adams, Deputy Executive Director for the City of Hallandale Beach Faith Phinn and Consul Adjunto of Argentina Matías Valverde, were among those in attendance.
In celebration of the two-story restaurant being the area’s first container project, the Hallandale Beach Community Redevelopment Agency (HBCRA) is offering a special 30-day Uber and Lyft promotion for locals to receive $25 off per ride with two people to and from KAO Bar & Grill using the code “D8 Night.”
Guests that check out the newly opened concept will find an expansive 5,000-square-foot restaurant made entirely from recycled shipping containers with an alfresco patio and 14-seat bar, perfect for big celebrations or intimate nights out.
“We’re thrilled to bring our first container restaurant project to Hallandale and to share our passion for Argentine and American cuisine with the community,” says co-founder Matias Pagano. “There’s nothing more satisfying than seeing people enjoy the food and atmosphere you’ve created, and we’re excited to do that in a community with a strong Argentine population. We’ve worked hard to create a welcoming space that’s perfect for gathering with friends and family, enjoying great food, and making memories. We can’t wait for everyone to experience it for themselves!”
In terms of cuisine, guests can expect flavorful Argentine grill-inspired dishes, including shareable tablitas (grilled platters), Argentine-style pizzas, signature fusion sandwiches and more. Standout menu items include:
Tablita Parilla ($24) Argentine chorizo, blood sausage, churrasco, grilled peppers and toasted slices of bread with chimichurri
Tablita de Empanadas ($16), choice of beef, ham and cheese, or spinach (vegan) empanadas with a side of criolla sauce
Special Pizza ($15), with mozzarella, ham, olives, roasted red peppers and oregano
Tango Sliders ($15), Angus mini burgers with cheddar cheese and homemade aioli on a brioche bun with a side of chimichurri
Lomito Sandwich ($22), grilled beef, lettuce, tomatoes, ham, cheese and fried eggs with homemade aioli served on a French baguette
Choripan ($17), Argentine-style sausage and chimichurri on ciabatta bread
Fired-up grilled meats served with a variety of sides and KAO’s signature chimichurri sauce, including Skirt Steak ($33), NY Strip Loin ($35), Rib-Eye ($65), T-Bone ($69), Patagonian Lamb Ribs ($42), Tomahawk ($160), Grilled Branzino ($42) and Grilled Chicken ($17)
The main food offerings pair perfectly with the list of unique handcrafted drinks and delicious desserts such as Churros ($9), served with ganache or dulce de leche sauce; Skillet Chocolate Chip Cookie ($12), served with vanilla ice cream, glazed pecans and strawberries with warm chocolate syrup drizzle; or Tres Leches ($12), a light and airy sponge cake baked in three creamy milks topped with meringue and fresh fruit.
KAO Bar & Grill is located at 11 NE First Ave. in Hallandale Beach. It is open Sunday through Wednesday from 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Thursday through Saturday from 11:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. Happy hour is available Monday through Friday from 4-7 p.m. The second-level dining room is available for private events, corporate functions, birthday parties and more.