It was her driving passion for sharing her native culture with South Florida that heavily influenced Mina’s owner Yasmine Kotb to pursue a career in the restaurant industry. Born in Cairo, Egypt, Yasmine moved to Houston, Texas at the age of four. Having spent many summers as a young girl with her grandparents in Cairo, Yasmine always had the desire to share her family customs and traditions with others. Experiencing Mediterranean dishes and ingredients was a natural element of her childhood, thus awakening a strong appreciation for her own culture at a very early age.
After receiving a degree from the University of Texas in Journalism, Yasmine began her career in the music industry where she managed various facets of concert production. Working with a plethora of coveted artists including Paul McCartney, Beyonce, Coldplay, The Who, and Cher (to name a few), Yasmine spent most of her time on the road where she was able to experience a range of well-designed spaces from boutique hotels to opulent resorts and exceptional restaurants. Yasmine spent her downtime immersed in architecture and design, quickly growing a passion for buying and restoring distressed properties. This is what led her to find the warehouse on 79th street that houses Mina’s today.
Now a seasoned world traveler, Yasmine decided to leave her career in the music industry to embark on a new culinary journey in Miami. "I fell in love with Miami 12 years ago and always knew that I would make my way back to settle there." Said Yasmine "There seemed to be a lack of Mediterranean/Middle Eastern cuisine in South Florida so I knew that opening this concept in Miami would be the right choice." Mina’s Mediterraneo fuses together the love of Mediterranean fare from Yasmine’s childhood, with her love of design, thus culminating in a perfect dining destination.
"Throughout my travels, finding great restaurants was my favorite past time." Said Yasmine "Gathering around traditionally home cooked food was how my family spent time together and it is that exact notion that made Mina's feel like the most appropriate venture for me."
Prior to moving to Miami, Yasmine aided her parents in the opening of a similar concept, Mediterraneo, in Houston, Texas, where her mother is the executive chef. As a result, Yasmine’s creativity, leadership capabilities and knowledge of Mediterranean cuisine grew significantly, making her the restaurateur that she is today.
A steady hot spot in the 79th Street neighborhood, Mina’s eclectic fusion of International cuisines is only the first of many ventures for Yasmine.