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#51 Beto

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Posted 09 January 2009 - 05:08 PM

I lived in Miami for a couple years. The absolute best cuban is Puerto Sagua

http://www.yelp.com/...ant-miami-beach

Not sure if it's still there, but if so Automatic Slims/Al's trailer park is a fun place for drinking, and not poshy or exclusive.

I'll second the recommendation on Puerto Sagua. Not touristy at all, and a great representation of typical Cuban fare. In spite of its South Beach location, it's not trendy nor modern, and the prices are very good.

#52 wolverine

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Posted 09 January 2009 - 05:45 PM

Fri Eve Clubbing: Setai bar or the Shore Club

You also may want to check out the bar (around the pool) at the Delano, even if it's just for a drink. It would be on your way to the Setai or the Shore Club.

I echo the sentiments of another poster who recommended Prime 112. There may be better steakhouses, but no other steakhouse is quite the scene.

#53 SVT

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Posted 27 February 2009 - 02:41 PM

We just spent a few days in Miami, staying at the Grove Isle Resort. We had dinner one night in their restaurant, BaleenMiami, and had a very nice meal. The raw seafood appetizer was a fantastic start--simply served. I was more impressed by the roasted chicken than I had anticipated that I would be--nothing to compare to Palena's version (or even my attempts to replicate Palena's version), but a very well-cooked, well-seasoned bird. The sides were odd and difficult to place--I think it was baked salsify, but my palette was a bit off after a short bout of food poisoning a few days prior. Nonetheless, the food was good.

Lunch one day was at Puerto Sagua, and it was as good as advertised. I'm no expert in Cuban cuisine, but this was simple, tasty fare served by friendly people. It's definitely a diner, and has some dishes that would appeal to the less adventurous. We really enjoyed it.

We capped our trip with a visit to Il Gabbiano in the South Beach area (I believe). This was as advertised--a big, brash restaurant full of servers whisking plates on and off of our table the whole evening. I was impressed with both of our appetizers, a wholesome porcini ravioli and the bacon-topped artichokes alla romana. My entree was the orecchiette with rabe and sausage, and it was delicious. The only hitch in the evening was the breakdown in service after dinner--they couldn't figure out who ordered what, and it became an auction for who gets the espresso, who gets the capuccino, etc. (I got the espresso). I wasn't paying the bill, thankfully, for this dinner, and while I enjoyed it I'm not sure that I would go back if I wasn't part of a large group--the service seems almost overdone for a party of four or (even worse) two.

#54 xcanuck

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Posted 05 March 2009 - 10:18 AM

After being delayed in San Juan for one night, we got as far as Miami but AA couldn't get us home. Oh, darn. A night in Miami. Where shall we go? Our friends had a real hankering to go to South Beach so that's where we headed.

After a round of drinks at Ocean's Ten (tacky, touristy, and strangely classic SoBe), I dragged the group off to The Deuce. Now this is MY kind of bar. This is where the dregs of society and other assorted lowlifes hang out. It was happy hour and we pounded back cans of PBR with shots of Jim Beam. Dunno. It just seemed right. We cranked punk and metal tunes on the jukebox, played pool, and chatted with the local hookers.

We craved stone crabs and were sent to Monty's Raw Bar. Happy hour special was 2 stone crab claws for $6, and oysters on the half shell were a buck each. OK - so it wasn't the best seafood I've ever had, but after drinking at The Deuce, it was pretty much what I deserved. Monty's main saving grace (apart from being cheap) is the complete lack of attitude which permeates much of SoBe.

The night ended with cigars and rounds of drinks at The Abbey Brewery. Lots of great brews. I think. I stopped remembering stuff around this point.

#55 Heather

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 01:03 PM

I am back in Miami for a few days, and will be dining at Versailles and Little Havana. Also planning another trip to Captain Jim's in North Miami for some fresh fish and conch.

#56 Marks

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 02:43 PM

Try Chef Allens in Aventura. I went to school a long time ago with the Chef Allen Susser, who is a Beard award recipient. Amazing food and Service, a reall foodie place. Very caribean influenced style. http://www.chefallens.com/home.cfm

Mark

#57 Steve R.

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 07:12 AM

I am back in Miami for a few days, and will be dining at Versailles and Little Havana. Also planning another trip to Captain Jim's in North Miami for some fresh fish and conch.

We were there for a week in early Feb. and had dinner twice at Talula, which says a lot in and of itself. Wrote it up on Mouthfuls & CH if you're interested. Also liked Michy's, especially if you're sharing with 4 or more. So, when do you come to NYC... we have Cuban places too, you know.

#58 Heather

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 07:46 AM

We were there for a week in early Feb. and had dinner twice at Talula, which says a lot in and of itself. Wrote it up on Mouthfuls & CH if you're interested. Also liked Michy's, especially if you're sharing with 4 or more. So, when do you come to NYC... we have Cuban places too, you know.

Hi Steve! Two meals in one week is a pretty strong recommendation. I will check out Talula. I am hoping to get to NYC sometime this spring - will let you know.

Versailles is tonight. I am looking forward to comparing it to Little Havana. My friends who live here say the people watching is better at Versailles, but the food is better at Little Havana.

#59 Steve R.

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 10:21 AM

Hi Steve! Two meals in one week is a pretty strong recommendation. I will check out Talula. I am hoping to get to NYC sometime this spring - will let you know.

Versailles is tonight. I am looking forward to comparing it to Little Havana. My friends who live here say the people watching is better at Versailles, but the food is better at Little Havana.

We didnt make it to Versailles (which is quite the room) or Little Havana, but we went to Puerta Sagua (in SB) and to Isla Carnerias in the Little Cuba area. We liked I.C. better... nice home cooking. But both were basically diners... with Cuban, instead of the usual NYC Greek, ownership.

See you sooner or later.

#60 Heather

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 10:35 AM

Also of note: Heelsha, on NE 164th St in North Miami. Cute little Indian-Bangladeshi place tucked behind a Walgreens. Everything is made to order, so it's not recommended if you're in a hurry. :rolleyes:

1550 NE 164th Street
North Miami Beach, FL 33162
305.919.8393

#61 Heather

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 10:37 AM

Little Havana restaurant (there are 2 locations, I have only been to the North Miami one):

North Miami Location:
12727 Biscayne Blvd.
North Miami, FL 33181
Phone: (305) 899-9069

Deerfield Beach Location:
721 South Federal Highway
Deerfield Beach, FL 33441
1/2 mile south of Hillsboro Blvd.
Phone: (954) 427-6000

#62 gnatharobed

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 04:12 PM

Quick trip to Miami next Friday and Saturday. I'm thinking Cuban food one night and maybe some seafood the other night...any suggestions? Haven't been in years. I won't have a car so not too far from South Beach would be great. Thanks!

Debbie Tang
A&J Restaurant


#63 Dave Pressley

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Posted 18 April 2009 - 04:20 PM

Quick trip to Miami next Friday and Saturday. I'm thinking Cuban food one night and maybe some seafood the other night...any suggestions? Haven't been in years. I won't have a car so not too far from South Beach would be great. Thanks!

Just had lunch at Puerta Sagua this afternoon. The ropa vieja was outstanding (braised, shredded beef, white rice, fried plantains) especially when doused with the yellow sauce on the table...I'm still not sure what it was, but it tasted like a ketchup made with yellow peppers.

Clay Conley is doing some amazing things with seafood at Azul in the Mandarin Oriental. Worth a rental car to try his hamachi sashimi with aji amarillo, fried lotus chips and pickled red onion. Other tasting menu highlights were scallops on spring pea risotto with morels as well as the softshell crabs stuffed with stone crab (!) and served on heirloom tomatoes with yogurt remoulade.

Michael's Genuine Food and Drink is serving up some solid food. Fried hominy, absolutely perfect deviled eggs (fluffy, not-to-mayonnaisey, yellows), insanely bright and acidic tilefish ceviche, crispy fried beef cheeks (I think they were braised until tender, sliced into discs then breaded and fried--tasted like fried roast beef) and tuna tartare with grapefruit were the standouts.

Going to Michy's tonight!

Dave Pressley

General Manager, The Light Horse
715 King St. Alexandria, VA 22314


(In the interest of full disclosure, I also have financial interests in Eventide and Spider Kelly's.)


#64 DonRocks

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Posted 18 April 2009 - 07:34 PM

Michael's Genuine Food and Drink is serving up some solid food. Fried hominy, absolutely perfect deviled eggs (fluffy, not-to-mayonnaisey, yellows), insanely bright and acidic tilefish ceviche, crispy fried beef cheeks (I think they were braised until tender, sliced into discs then breaded and fried--tasted like fried roast beef) and tuna tartare with grapefruit were the standouts.

Going to Michy's tonight!

Given how close Michy's and Michael's are in proximity, I'm betting in advance you're regretting not being at Michael's this very second. And HOW much are they charging for valet parking around the backside of that dumpy building that houses Michy's?!

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#65 Dave Pressley

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Posted 19 April 2009 - 09:38 AM

Given how close Michy's and Michael's are in proximity, I'm betting in advance you're regretting not being at Michael's this very second. And HOW much are they charging for valet parking around the backside of that dumpy building that houses Michy's?!

Ha! That's funny...we were considering going back to Michael's, but decided that we wanted to try a variety of restaurants rather than just hedging our bets and sticking with an obviously fantastic restaurant.

Glad we did.

Michy's was absolutely fantastic. We started the meal with white peach mojitos--I would never normally order a drink like this, but our server, Bo, hinted that all of the ingredients were fresh and the drink was great. It was very peach-y with a ton of mint and a level of carbonation that seems to missing from the drink in most cases, in my opinion.

White gazpacho was poured at the table over its garnishes of vinegar jellies, peeled white grapes and toasted marcona almonds. We also had the tuna tartare--that was lightly flavored with sesame and served with impossibly thin potato chips.

Second course was their ceviche (scallops, shrimp, amberjack and grouper, I believe) that was ass-kickingly bright with lime juice and onion.

Main course was the foie gras for me and the fettucini carbonara for my wife. Both were fantastic dishes in their own right, but were overshadowed by the truffled polenta with poached eggs. It was so simple, perfectly seasoned and just plain awesome.

Desserts were strawberry shortcake (over shortbread biscuits) and the super-custardy bread pudding with chocolate and orange.

...and we found street parking right out front that cost us nothing. :rolleyes:

Dave Pressley

General Manager, The Light Horse
715 King St. Alexandria, VA 22314


(In the interest of full disclosure, I also have financial interests in Eventide and Spider Kelly's.)


#66 Dave Pressley

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Posted 19 April 2009 - 06:50 PM

For great Peruvian, try El Gran Inka. It was recommended to us by several people and it didn't disappoint.

Ceviche was perfect--heavy on the lime and red onion with big' ol Peruvian corn kernels and a dallop of sweet potato mash.

I also had the Causa Limena with Shrimp, which was very much like cool layers of very lightly mashed yellow potatoes alternating with layers of poached shrimp, avocadoes and shrimp sauce. It was good, but not great. I would have liked it better if the potatoes were warm or hot, I think.

The Tamalitos Verdes lookied like spinach turds, but they were awesome. They were ultra-green tamales served out of the husk and stuffed with roasted chicken. Delicious and satisfying.

My wife wasn't feeling well today and had the Aguadito de Pollo soup--heavy on the chicken, cilantro and vegetables. She seemed happy with it but I didn't taste it 'cause I didn't want her germs. Me healthy...me happy.

I think there's two or three locations for this place, but I have no idea where the other two are. We ate at the one in Key Biscayne.

Dave Pressley

General Manager, The Light Horse
715 King St. Alexandria, VA 22314


(In the interest of full disclosure, I also have financial interests in Eventide and Spider Kelly's.)


#67 Heather

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Posted 20 April 2009 - 11:17 AM

We didnt make it to Versailles (which is quite the room)

It is indeed quite the room. Part of the charm of Versailles is that it is the classic Cuban-American experience in Miami, right down to the elderly gentleman selling mirrored paintings of Havana at the edge of the parking lot.

We started dinner with a appetizer platter: croquetas (including codfish, mmm), mini turnovers (filled with spinach & cheese or picadillo) yuca, and mariquetas (plantains sliced lengthwise, fried until crisp), with a side of cilantro sauce. The croquetas were by far the best I have ever had. Mains were incredible roast pork, with moros and plantains, and pastelon de platano with picadillo. The marinated roast pork included generous hunks of crispy chicarrones. Great cafe and flan Cubano for dessert.

I would not recommend this place for those of little appetite: four of us couldn't finish the appetizer platter "for two," and the leftovers from two orders of roast pork made three more meals.

Linky to photo of roast pork.
Linky to photo of cafe & Flan Cubano.

If you're in the neighborhood on the first Friday of every month, then I recommend working off the calories the way we did: by dancing to the Afro-Cuban funk band Palo! at a little club farther down Calle Ocho called Kimbaracumbara.

#68 Zin Fan

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Posted 08 May 2009 - 02:59 PM

Given how close Michy's and Michael's are in proximity, I'm betting in advance you're regretting not being at Michael's this very second. And HOW much are they charging for valet parking around the backside of that dumpy building that houses Michy's?!

My husband and I will be in South Beach with his parents for 12 days in June and will probably dine out 6 evenings out of that. Our experience in restaurants on or near Ocean Drive in the past 3 years has not been good. They were very expensive but disappointing in terms of quality of food and service. Any restaurant recommendations in South Beach? Would really appreciate it.

#69 Heather

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Posted 13 July 2009 - 06:49 AM

Not groundbreaking, but sometimes that's not what you're after...Les Halles in Coral Gables is a fine place to sit, drink wine, and talk for a few hours. Mussels were delicious, steak au poivre correct, and everyone raved about the frites, but for my money the best thing on the table last night was the pommes persillade that came with my duck confit. Almost as good as Waitman's.

Les Halles
2415 Ponce de Leon Blvd
Coral Gables, FL 33134
305-461-1099

#70 lizzie

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Posted 12 August 2009 - 09:42 PM

we will be spending a few days in the Coral Gables area next week - taking my child to U of Miami to start freshman year. We need a restaurant not too far from the school for a small group dinner one night. Les Halles is a possibility, but i am also seeking any other recommendations.

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#71 Heather

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Posted 21 August 2009 - 03:52 PM

Just had another great lunch at Capt. Jim's, in North Miami. Definitely off the beaten path, but worth checking out for pristine seafood and friendly service. A local's review. You can have them grill your fish and eat it there, or buy some to take home.

Captain Jim Hanson’s Seafood Market
12950 W. Dixie Highway
North Miami, FL 33161 305-892-2812

#72 ktmoomau

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Posted 29 January 2010 - 10:49 AM

Hubby and I are in South Beach with friends for a long weekend. We didn't make any of the reservations so this should be interesting :angry: Had dinner at the Red Grill last night. Friends wanted to go to Prime 112, but other friends insisted on going here, we went with the friends going here. They were late so we had wine and calamari at the bar- normal calamari- not ground breaking but satisfying to me since I hadn't eaten since breakfast and had a nice spicy sauce. Then we sat down to a quite extreme attempt of an upsell by our waiter for pretty much everything. I ended up with a Filet, which was very good. Hubby at a NY strip (Ray's is probably much better), but they were good steaks. The mac and cheese was a huge portion, but really good. I wish I could have eaten more of that. Parmesan tater tots weren't as good with so much rich food, and the asparagus again with all the richness in the meat and mac would have been better just grilled. But overall the steak was really good steak. And the ambiance was nice for a small group, you could talk, but it wasn't too quiet.

But I learned fast how to keep my head up 'cause I
Know I got this side of me that
Wants to grab the yoke from the pilot and just
Fly the whole mess into the sea. The Shins
www.rrbmdk.com
www.katelintaylor.com


#73 Heather

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Posted 29 January 2010 - 01:34 PM

Another Calle Ocho find: Exquisito Restaurant. Serves breakfast, lunch & dinner. Very good food, table service on one side and counter service on the other. There's usually a small combo playing on weekend nights. Excellent people watching. :angry: I've had the bistec palomilla & lechon asado and can recommend both.

Exquisito Restaurant
1510 SW 8 St
Miami, FL 33135
Tel: (305) 643-0227
Fax: (305) 643-0081
Open Daily: 7:00 A.M To Midnight

#74 ktmoomau

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Posted 01 February 2010 - 03:08 PM

Just as a note- the beach food at the Key Biscane Ritz Carlton is not so hot, even the Ritz burger was disappointing which is odd, as the one at the South Beach Ritz Carlton is very tasty.

We had our second dinner at the Blue Door, which is where Hubby and I got engaged two years ago. The food was really good I started with the Homard Paillette- lobster with fresh vegetables and vinagrette. Lots of fresh tomato and veggies with warm lobster it was very good. I then had the Mango Porco- pork tenderloin with black thai risotto and blueberries and mango. I thought this was great, fresh and tasty. I completely forget what dessert was though... which is a shame because I think I really liked it.

We had brunch at the Pelican, but they gave us the old lunch menu- we didn't realize they had a brunch menu until too late. It was ok, nothing to write home about though.

That night we went to Hakassan in the Fountainbleau which was great. As a note the bar here has an amazing variety of liquor. Really a huge selection. And I really mean GREAT. We had the dim sum platter, tea smoked ribs, duck spring rolls, soft shell crab with curry and grilled shanghai dumplings. The dim sum platter, tea smoked ribs and soft shells were the best, but everything was really good. Dumplings weren't too thick and everything had excellent flavor. For entrees we had five spice wagyu in hot pot which was really really good, stir fry xo prawn with pineapple which was good, but not a must have spicy and sweet, but just not as good as other stuff we ordered, roasted satay chicken which was really good with very crispy skin, shredded ribeye beef was good, the doung bo pork was excellent and the snow pea shoots were excellent with both garlic and ginger sauce. This was really a great meal. I had a white chocolate mousse with passionfruit sorbet to end that was sweet and tangy, the mousse had great texture and richness, but the passionfruit really cut the sweetness.

Next day we had pastrami at Jerry's for Hubby's b-day to fill his pastrami needs for a bit.

All in all a good trip. Not exactly the places we would have chosen ourselves, but we ate very well. And our friend got engaged which was the main point and that worked out well!

But I learned fast how to keep my head up 'cause I
Know I got this side of me that
Wants to grab the yoke from the pilot and just
Fly the whole mess into the sea. The Shins
www.rrbmdk.com
www.katelintaylor.com


#75 JDawgBBall9

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Posted 08 November 2010 - 09:21 AM

We ate at the Palm in Miami on Friday, figured it should go in here since it is a chain instead of the Miami topic on the Intrepid Traveler board. The entrees and sides were fantastic and the chain has possibly the best carrot cake I could possibly imagine, it appealed to everyone whether they liked carrot cake or not.

---

[I know it seems mercurial, and your instinct to post in the DC forum was sound, but usually (even with chains), the post follows the location of the meal - I should probably codify this one day so people aren't left wondering, but sometimes I even wonder myself. :) :)]

Edited by DonRocks, 08 November 2010 - 09:45 AM.


#76 Heather

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Posted 11 December 2010 - 07:47 AM

I'll be back 12/30-1/4 and thinking of surveying Miami-Dade's growing list of food trucks. Dim Ssam a gogo is high on my list, as is GastroPod, Latin Burger and The Fish Box. Will definitely report back.

#77 ktmoomau

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Posted 13 December 2010 - 11:51 AM

I'll be back 12/30-1/4 and thinking of surveying Miami-Dade's growing list of food trucks. Dim Ssam a gogo is high on my list, as is GastroPod, Latin Burger and The Fish Box. Will definitely report back.

Oh I am so jealous, this might be the first year in five years I won't be in Miami in January :) Please do write in so I can live vicariously.

But I learned fast how to keep my head up 'cause I
Know I got this side of me that
Wants to grab the yoke from the pilot and just
Fly the whole mess into the sea. The Shins
www.rrbmdk.com
www.katelintaylor.com


#78 Heather

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Posted 21 February 2011 - 09:45 AM

Do yourself a favor and get to Whisk Gourmet in Coral Gables for lunch or dinner at least once during your stay in Miami. This is our dinner destination after the Coconut Grove Art Festival today - excellent ingredients, unfussy prep, unpretentious atmosphere.

I am writing up the Miami food truck scene to post on my website this week.

#79 youngfood

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Posted 22 February 2011 - 04:54 PM

Overdue recap of several trips to Miami over the past year:

River Oyster Bar (near Brickell area) is a lovely little spot with above average wines by the glass, half price raw bar happy hour with many oyster options, and lively well-tended bar scene. Location may not be convenient to most vacationers, but isn't far from the arena or Brickell. Reasonably priced and quite inexpensive at happy hour. Does not feel like Miami in a good way.

Garcia's on the River (short drive front downtown) is a lovely, casual spot for grouper, mahi mahi or other local fish sandwiches on their covered patio along the river. Also does stone crabs when in season and has the feel of a crab house. My go-to when I have time for lunch and am convenient to the area. Wish we had something like it in DC.

Michael's Genuine (Design District) is a gem in every way. Open for lunch and dinner. Reasonable prices, lively unpretentious atmosphere, good array of dishes on the menu. Frank Bruni loves this place and I like it a lot, though it's a drive unless you are staying in the Design District, which has taken off, but is still not recommended to walk to by local concierges.

Sra. Martinez (Design District) is as enjoyable as Michael's has been for me from Michele Bernstein. Fun, small plate spanish tapas and wine. Has a pretty affordable tasting menu option where the chef sends out whatever she's excited about that night and a nice food prep bar where you can comfortably dine solo.

Azul at the Mandarin Oriental (Brickell area) is lovely, but expensive. Great swordfish, hamachi, veal preparations and a lovely sommelier, but quite pricey with most appetizers between $15-20 and many entrees $35-45. I really like the sommelier though and have not been disappointed with anything I've eaten here and find myself going back often even if just for a single course and glass or two of wine. Highly recommended if you are nearby and willing to spend.

Hakkasan at the Fontainebleu (Miami Beach) is overpriced and disapointing. Probably my worst dining experience of 2010. Extremely expensive, sweet, uninteresting cocktails, bad upsell from the sommeilier who disregarded my plain statement that I was looking at the very bottom end of the price range on his wine list and did not think he had a white burgundy that would go well with my duck breast or that was available close to my price range. Badly overcooked dish was sent back and came back out after a brief reheating (could tell because the one bite we had was still missing from it). Avoid.

#80 silentbob

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Posted 11 March 2011 - 12:01 PM

Michael's Genuine (Design District) is a gem in every way. Open for lunch and dinner. Reasonable prices, lively unpretentious atmosphere, good array of dishes on the menu. Frank Bruni loves this place and I like it a lot, though it's a drive unless you are staying in the Design District, which has taken off, but is still not recommended to walk to by local concierges.

We actually took the bus from South Beach across the bay to Biscayne Blvd. and walked 5 minutes to Michael's. The streets in the Design District were definitely deserted but there was still some daylight so we felt okay.

The fettuccine carbonara (with smoked bacon, crispy jamón serrano, prosciutto, and melting St. Andre) that we had at Michy's was probably my favorite dish during our Miami trip, but Michael's was definitely the best meal overall. The tangerine creamsicle pot de creme with warm doughnuts and jam was out of this world, and we thoroughly enjoyed the Fudge Farms pork chop as well. Every dish we had was well-balanced IMO.

#81 Pat

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Posted 28 May 2011 - 11:37 AM

A strategically placed $20 makes you instant best friends with the maitre'd at Joe's.

I'm not planning to go there any time soon but just saw the secret here.

#82 JimRice

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Posted 25 November 2011 - 09:38 PM

We had a stinker of a weekend in October. Flew down to Miami, rented a convertible, drove to the Florida Keys, and it rained all weekend. Then our flight home out of Miami went mechanical. We were stuck in Miami overnight, and the thought of dinner at the bar at the Doubletree didn't do it for me. Fortunately, I had friended Don Rockwell on facebook, and when I put out a plea for a good place to eat in Miami, he was there. He recommended Michael's Genuine Food and Drink, so we hopped a cab over there.

cobia crudo.jpg
A very elegant preparation of cobia, one of my favorite fish which is now being farmed.
octopus.jpg
Braised until tender, then grilled, and served with tomatoes and herbs. This was very Mediterranean tasting.
rice cake before.jpg
This rice cake was made with bits of chorizo and rock shrimp, with a fried egg on top. It doesn't look like much, but it's very tasty when you dig in.
rice cake after.jpg
linguine.jpg
Linguine with lamb bolognaise sauce and house made ricotta. Perfect pasta and a homey meat sauce.
cobia ceviche.jpg
Cobia again, in a ceviche with avocado and papaya. I liked this preparation better, with the acidity and sweetness of the fruit; Barbara liked the crudo better.
champagne.jpg
Camille Saves champagne, a splendid bottle.
dessert.jpg
dessert 2.jpg
Dessert was the tangerine cremesicle pot de creme with blackberry jam and doughnuts. Served with sparklers for Barbara's birthday.

This meal turned a pain in the ass into a special occasion. Thanks, Don.

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#83 ktmoomau

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Posted 30 January 2012 - 11:18 AM

Any updates? Lots of new openings. Going down the end of this week.

But I learned fast how to keep my head up 'cause I
Know I got this side of me that
Wants to grab the yoke from the pilot and just
Fly the whole mess into the sea. The Shins
www.rrbmdk.com
www.katelintaylor.com


#84 Rhone1998

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Posted 30 January 2012 - 12:32 PM

Any updates? Lots of new openings. Going down the end of this week.

We were there last week, and based on advice in this thread visited Michael's Genuine Food and Drink and Michy's for dinner, and Puerto Sagua for lunch. I'll try to post a more detailed review soon, but in short, we loved Michael's, and really enjoyed our meals at the other two places as well (dish of the trip goes to Michy's, though, for a plate of tempura-style fried squash blossoms with a delicious ground shrimp stuffing).

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Dan


#85 Sundae in the Park

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 02:50 PM

Anything available in/near downtown for daytime eating? We can cab for dinners but I have no clue about lunches. We're staying at the Hyatt Regency on Southeast 2nd ave. Thanks!

#86 ktmoomau

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 03:52 PM

Brief rundown of our Miami eating:
First off if you are going to Miami soon please note that the Royal Palm is going through a big renovation- sooo if you see the rooms for a good deal that is why. We were put in a really old awful room and then got moved Friday morning. They are going to close the whole old tower April to October and turn the pool rooms into a spa so lots o contstruction starting in April. A lot of the amenities and services are not great there right now.

Friday: Lunch at Sushi Samba- we were beaching it Friday since it was so nice and wanted something close to our hotel. I wanted some sushi after reading an article in Vogue about sushi in Japan. Had a couple interesting rolls and some nigri and cucumber rolls. We liked everything.

That evening we went to Hakkassan. We previously had an amazing meal there. This time around it was still very good, but not quite as good as before. The dumplings were excellent, as was the crispy duck salad, these were two really great dishes. The ribs were also good. The dried beef with pancakes had a plum sauce I didn't care for. The lobster next door looked really good. I would just avoid their dried beef, go with other things. Oh and their cocktails are great, I love the bar there.

Saturday: Hubby wanted Pastrami so we went to Jerry's Famous. They do have a great pastrami sandwich on rye. And that is hard to find around here. This is one of hubby's standby must-haves.

That night we went to Barceloneta. I LOVED Barceloneta. The drinks were really good, although the bar was very, very busy. The food was all really good. We got ham and cheeses. Croquettas, squid ink meatballs and cuttlefish, Spinach with carmelized onions, Stone crabs, escargot and chocolate souffle. It was all really good. this is definitely worth a trip.

Sunday we had brunch at the Biltmore as we were going to Merrick Plaza since it was overcast and supposed to rain. Had a good brunch. Shops at Merrick weren't as cool as last time I went, wouldn't really bother going back now.

Had dinner at the airport because we ate so much at brunch... had a burger at the Island Grill, it was ok. But it is one of the better options in the airport and we could watch part of the superbowl.

But I learned fast how to keep my head up 'cause I
Know I got this side of me that
Wants to grab the yoke from the pilot and just
Fly the whole mess into the sea. The Shins
www.rrbmdk.com
www.katelintaylor.com


#87 crazeegirl

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Posted 08 February 2012 - 08:12 AM

i am staying at the mondrian in southbeach for 4 days and would love some restaurant recommendations. i will have a kiddo (3yr) old with me, who has been to a wide range of restaurants--and can behave at upscale restos (i tend to go on the earlier side). i am not renting a car but i hear most places are accesible via cab. if this is NOT the case, please advise as well. any recommendations for lunch, dinner, snacks would be appreciated! thank you!

#88 Rhone1998

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Posted 08 February 2012 - 12:51 PM

i am staying at the mondrian in southbeach for 4 days and would love some restaurant recommendations. i will have a kiddo (3yr) old with me, who has been to a wide range of restaurants--and can behave at upscale restos (i tend to go on the earlier side). i am not renting a car but i hear most places are accesible via cab. if this is NOT the case, please advise as well. any recommendations for lunch, dinner, snacks would be appreciated! thank you!

Sietsema has some Miami suggestions in today's chat.

Lots of Miami questions in recent months. The hot spots right now include Yardbird for southern comfort food, Barceloneta for Spanish small plates and Pubbelly "for a David Chang sort of experience," as a food friend puts it. And don't forget the ever-popular Michael's Genuine Food & Drink.

We took our 14 month old son to Bengal restaurant while we were there. The chef is Bangladeshi and there are some Bengali items on the menu, but the food is mostly North Indian standards (though well prepared). They have high chairs, the staff were welcoming, and we had the restaurant to ourselves at about 6:30 on a weeknight, so it was a great place to go with the baby.

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#89 ktmoomau

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Posted 08 February 2012 - 01:21 PM

Big Pink has good breakfast and is generally open fairly early. The wait at the Pubbelly places are quite long (we waited about 45 min for our table at Barceloneta, but were fine as we were drinking), and I don't think they take reservations, but you might double check on that, but the food is very good, it might be easier earlier too, we went fairly late.

We also have had breakfast at the Pelican that was good, but that was a couple years ago now.

Lots of touristy stuff on Lincoln Road, but they also have like a Paul Bakery, 4d for Gelatto, shake Shack, Sushi Samba (which also has other stuff). The aforementioned Jerry's isn't too far away for breakfast/lunch.

I don't care for much on the beach, it is all pretty touristy and not a lot is great. You can get take out stone crabs at Joe's. The River would probably be fine fairly early.

Sorry I am not much help, we tend to eat late and go to fairly adult places...

But I learned fast how to keep my head up 'cause I
Know I got this side of me that
Wants to grab the yoke from the pilot and just
Fly the whole mess into the sea. The Shins
www.rrbmdk.com
www.katelintaylor.com


#90 Rhone1998

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Posted 08 February 2012 - 03:04 PM

Big Pink has good breakfast and is generally open fairly early.


Agreed. Just don't go there if you're in a hurry...it's slooooooow, even by Southern standards.

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Dan


#91 crazeegirl

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Posted 04 March 2012 - 08:03 PM

thanks everyone for your suggestions. had a blast! from blt to hakkasan to pool side at mondrian and beachside at delano. i have to say my favorite was mandolin. so so simple! http://www.mandolinmiami.com/ just the kiddo and me, but the resto was romantic and the food was amazing! not in sobe but definitely worth the taxi ride to the deco district.

#92 SVT

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Posted 04 March 2012 - 10:20 PM

Had a few days at a meeting in Miami Beach, and a chance to have a few meals out.

The first night we had a late dinner at Sardinia on Purdy Ave. The place was packed, but service was prompt and efficient. The burrata was really great as a first course. The bucatini was good, but the stars of the night were the grilled octopus with vegetables and the tiramisu.

The next night we went to The Forge, and had a solid if unspectacular dinner. They now have an enomatic with around 80 wines by the glass. I didn't have a chance to really look much at the enomatic list, unfortunately, but I was a bit surprised by how high some of the by-the-glass prices were. The bottle list is really something.

The next night we had high hopes for Michael's Genuine Food and Drink, but were a bit underwhelmed. The food was good, not great, and the service was not very hospitable. The highlights of the night were the deviled eggs, which were spectacularly rich, and whole roast chicken, which was very flavorful and perfectly prepared. Having read high praises, we thought that we were in for something elevated and interesting, but what we got was solid but not remarkable.

Finally, the last night we had dinner at 1500 at the Eden Roc, where we were staying. It was fine. The pork belly tacos, which I'm sure seemed like a seriously creative dish for a hotel kitchen, were disappointingly lacking in flavor (by comparison, the pork belly tacos at R&R Taqueria in Elkridge are ridiculously rich and flavorful). The other dishes were solid, and service was nicely polished and eager to please.

#93 Sundae in the Park

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Posted 13 March 2012 - 01:43 PM

Stayed downtown for a few days at the Hyatt Regency. The hotel is older and the furnishings are a bit worn and dated, but it is right on the river and connected to the Miami Convention Center (and accordingly bustling). Also, it is right along both loops of the free downton metromover, which is convenient for pretty much all of the interesting spots along that part of the waterfront (the American Airlines Arena, the Adrienne Arsht Center, Bayfront Park, Bayside mall, Mary Brickell Village, connection to metrorail, etc). You can hop a nearby bus for a ~20-30-min. ride to the beach, which might be easier than finding parking.

We had a great lunch at Garcia's on the River, which now seems to be (or maybe was always) named Garcia's Seafood Grille and Fish Market. The portions weren't large, but the seafood (grouper and shrimp sandwiches) was very fresh. The fries are thin and mediocre but the non-creamy chowders (seafood and grouper) are excellent. The fish and shellfish on ice in the case downstairs is beautiful, text-book fresh - glistening, with brilliant colors, firm and plump flesh, and non-rheumy eyes.

We had crappy cuban food at the Latin American Cafe in the Bayside Marketplace. In its defense, we knew what we were getting into, as it was late, in a harborside venue at the mall, and priced reasonably (except for the drinks - ask before you buy!). We just wanted some grub before we went to sleep, and that's what we got.

We had terrific (at least we really liked it) Cuban food at Puerto Sagua right off Miami Beach. The ropa vieja was very tender and flavorful, but the sauce for the roasted pork shoulder was even better! We got extra bread (fluffy white and served very warm) to sop up every drop. The meat pies were just ok but the croquette was full of porky goodness. The caramel flan wasn't very good, though, very cold and hard. Can't beat the prices here and the diner/family-oriented atmosphere is a nice break from the beach.

A work dinner at Oceanaire in Mary Brickell Village was fine - we had some nice grouper, tuna, and shellfish. The food and service were very good, but for that price point, I wish we had been able to try a local place. Man, their wait staff are practiced at the upsell!

Perricone’s, also in Mary Brickell Village is an old-school Italian restaurant with a gorgeous garden dining area. Many of the wait staff are hearty and friendly older men and many of the diners seem to be recognized as regulars. I had a vegetable torte and chicken salad sandwich. The torte is pretty but relies on the tomato sauce and vinegar (sweet, almost syrupy basalmic, yum!) for flavor. The chicken salad is glorious - big chunks of chicken, granny smith bites, golden raisins, and pine nuts) - but needed some salt to even out the sweetness. Bread and bruschetta topping are brought to your table - the topping really packs some garlic punch! The pasta bowls seem to be quite large portions. There is also a marketplace for purchasing meats, breads, cheese, and pastries.

Finally, we grabbed a quick bite at La Granja, a chain of Peruvian fast-ish food joints. It is table service, even though there is big plastic board menu and there is a place to go up and place your order - maybe for takeout? The rotisserie chicken is decent, not as good as our Pollo Rico or Crisp and Juicy, and the Lomo saltado was salty but hit the spot.

#94 Mark Dedrick

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Posted 07 May 2012 - 02:25 PM

Just got back yesterday from a long weekend in Miami with some friends. Just a couple of notes on some of the more memorable meals we had there.

Michael's Genuine Food and Drink was our spot for dinner the night of our arrival. We had very high hopes going in for this meal, and I would say that the restaurant delivered. Very cool atmosphere and great service. We started out with a selection of starters shared by the table. Everything we had was good, but the standouts here were the Wood Oven Roasted Double-Yolk Farm Egg, the Crispy Sweet and Spicy Pork Belly and the Crispy Pig's Ears.

Books and Books - We were looking for a breakfast/brunch place relatively near our hotel and this delivered the goods. Nothing spectacular or groundbreaking, but a good spot for eggs, sausage, pancakes, etc. They don't have liquor, just beer, which is a slight hurdle if you're looking to go on a continuous four day long bender.

Pubbelly - This was the standout of the weekend. There were six of us, so we managed to take out most of the menu. Everything was ridiculously good. I would say there was really only one dish that wasn't just absolutely awesome, which was the Buffalo Sweetbreads, which were simply very good rather than awesome. The bacon wrapped dates stuffed with chorizo, the short rib tartare, the cochinillo and the Japanese amberjack were probably my favorite dishes of what we ordered. From what I understand this place can get quite crowded and hard to get into due to its small size. That said, we showed up with a party of six on a Friday night at 8 pm and were seated immediately. That's probably just dumb luck on our part, however.

Puerto Sagua - We really wanted some Cuban food while down there, and this place delivered. Great ropa vieja, tostones and Cuban sandwiches.

A couple of other notes. Dinner at The Dining Room was really disappointing. Sloppy and inconsistent service and only decent food from a place that came strongly recommended and for which we had high hopes. I also didn't really find much in the way of decent cocktails in this town, primarily just too sweet beach drinks (which tended to cost north of $15 a piece), although the Manhattan at Michael's Genuine was pretty fantastic. The Raleigh served me perhaps the worst cocktail I've ever had, in the form of a supposed Manhattan, which was the first drink I've sent back in a very long time. They somewhat made up for it a couple of days later with a very solid Negroni. The Mondrian is a great place to get drinks at sunset, more for the view than for the drinks, but definitely a good experience. Also, I'd strongly recommend, both there are elsewhere, ordering your drinks at the inside bar and carrying them outside. Noticeable quality difference.

And finally, to end a too-long post, beware that essentially every single place we went in Miami adds an automatic 18% gratuity.

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#95 DonRocks

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Posted 10 October 2012 - 07:24 PM

Here are some recent notes from a visit to Miami - many thanks to Tom Sietsema for his recommendations of Sugarcane and especially Yardbird!

Sugarcane Raw Bar & Grill - Location: Midtown one block from Shops at Midtown. Category: Modern Latino and Japanese Hybrid. Minimum Dress: T-shirt and dress shorts. DC Comparable: None, but Kushi when it first opened was definitely a close relative. Notable For: Large, noisy, crowded square bar, half-inside and half-outside, with long waits and good cocktails, Almost 50 rums, Large interior with snacks, raw bar, crudos, tapas, a few large plates, robata, sushi and sashimi, moderately noisy remix music, fake boobs. Highlghts: $12 Cocktails including "Eden" and "Rum 'n' Bramble," extensive selection of beers, wines, and rums, Flounder crudo with olia verde and Maldon salt, Goat cheese croquettes with membrillo marmalade, chicken liver robata with horseradish creme and pickled onion, cauliflower robata with bagna cauda. Recommended: Everything tried was good to very good, Cocktails and bar service were excellent. Verdict: Glad I went despite standing almost an hour for a bar seat, might not return unless I was in the area, but would encourage others to go, it's a lot of fun. Next Time: More cocktails, a whole roasted fish or chicken, and some sushi rolls.

Yardbird Southern Table & Bar - Location: Miami Beach one block from Regal Cinemas South Beach Stadium 18. Category: Southern American with emphasis on Bourbons and Cocktails. Minimum Dress: T-shirts and jeans. DC Comparable: None, but picture a great "21st-century, artsy-rustic, bustling, traditional Southern American restaurant," and go now while it's peaking <--- cannot stress this enough. Notable For: A menu that will call out strongly to most Americans (not so much for vegans), robust portions, large Bourbon selection Highlights: Cocktails (which I didn't have), Fried Chicken including Moma's Chicken Biscuits (was very hard to pry myself from a full order, but wanted to try the biscuits and other things), Sweet Summer Zellwood, FL Corn Soup with crispy Morels and Florida blue-crab dumpling, Deviled Eggs from Lake Meadows Organic eggs, fresh dill, "redneck caviar," and smoked trout roe, friendly and attentive staff (napkin fell off my lap while sitting at the bar, and before I could even bend down to pick it up, a server who noticed it rushed over to replace it - remarkable). Recommended: Everything tried, but the beer selection should be more micro-oriented. Verdict: Glad I went, would happily return, a wonderful Southern restaurant that should get serious attention at the James Beard Awards. Next Time: Wherever my mood takes me - it's that kind of menu.

Cafe Sambal - Location: Brickell Key in the Mandarin Oriental Hotel Category: Resort-Casual Bistro with Asian overtones. Minimum Dress: Resort casual. DC Comparable: Cafe du Parc (upstairs). Notable For: Architecture, Service. Highlights: $19 four-course bento-box lunch with amuse-bouche (which, at this hotel, is less than the all-in price of a single Pina Colada) Recommended: Miso soup, Chocolate Green Tea Mousse Cake with mango. Verdict: Served its purpose when the rains came, would return for breakfast or lunch if I was staying in the hotel. Next Time: Fresh salmon and other maki rolls, preferably taken outside on the patio (or better yet, poolside). <--- ETA, and so I did, the next day, and the Fresh Salmon Roll at $10 was a wonderful, generously sized 8-piece maki roll with salmon, tuna, avocado, and a touch of cream cheese served with a dollop of red-pepper aioli and fresh wasabi (sounds ordinary, but was exceptionally good).

Harry's Pizzeria - Location: Design District Category: Brutalist Pillbox-Sized Pizzeria (owned by Genuine Hospitality Group (who owns Michael's Genuine)). Minimum Dress: T-shirts and shorts. DC Comparable: None, but picture Menomalé run from afar by Frank Ruta. Notable For: Simple, fresh and seasonal offerings that may happen to present themselves in the form of a pizza, Custom-brewed "Back Forty" beers Highlights: Warm, enthusiastic (but not overboard) service, noisy intimacy, beers, seasonal ingredients, a-la-minute cooking Recommended: Everything tried, including Michael's Genuine Homebrew (http://michaelsgenuine.com/homebrew), a rice and sugar cane beer brewed by Alabama's Back Forty brewery, surprisingly even better in bottle than on draught, Meatballs in Sauce, Polenta Fries, Rock Shrimp Pizza with grilled lemon, manchego, scallion, and cilantro. Verdict: The perfect neighborhood pizzeria (Pupatella makes better crust and is better Napolitano pizza, but this is 2 Amys-like in the best of regards), worth traveling for Next Time: Will be driven by the daily specials, and whatever sounds good as a combination and sequence.

Michael's Genuine - Location: Design District Category: Casual Cafe with Lovely Sidewalk Seating Area and Bar. Minimum Dress: T-shirts and decent shorts. DC Comparable: Palena Cafe. Notable For: 2010 James Beard Award for "Best Chef - South," Simple, fresh and seasonal offerings, Custom-brewed "Back Forty" beers, Enthusiastic and eager-to-please staff that takes food seriously, high-quality ingredients comprising comfort food mixed with sophistication. Highlights: "Local and Seasonal" done correctly with solid cooking to back it up, Casual and not at all stuffy (that's pretty much what their motto is, and they walk the walk that they talk) Recommended: Michael's Genuine Homebrew (See Harry's Pizzeria above), Rock shrimp ceviche (the same rock shrimp I had on my pizza at Harry's the night before, the menu advertised "avocado" but there was none in the dish), Linguine with house-made bacon, tomato, cipollini, Piave Vecchio; "Wood Oven Roasted Double Yolk Farm Egg" with cave-aged gruyere, roasted tomato, chives, and sourdough crostini (which was good enough to fool every restaurant critic in the entire world into believing that it wasn't quick-finished - assuming this was my order (and I was assured that it was), it arrived in a ramekin, with wood-roasted char marks on the ceramic dish, the interior piping hot, in less than two minutes after ordering (yes, you read that correctly - less than two minutes after ordering)), I dumped the last half of my egg into my linguine and was better off for having done so, I will not recommend the wood-oven roasted pumpkin swordfish which was expensive, somewhat dry, and not very exciting. Verdict: Still wonderful, but in my last three visits to Miami, I've been to Michael's Genuine four times, and this was the least impressive visit of the four, or, should I say, "the only visit of the four that didn't blow me away." Expansion Syndrome? Maybe - some symptoms are present. Next Time: I won't be quite so quick to prioritize Michael's Genuine on my next visit to Miami - I enjoyed my meal at Yardbird just as much (Harry's also), and Michael's may have already reached its peak. That having been said, I'm being hyper-critical, and this remains an excellent restaurant. Whoever is the Tastemaker here has nearly identical aesthetics as I do.

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#96 Mark Dedrick

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Posted 23 January 2013 - 03:34 PM

My wife and I are headed down here in a couple of weeks. Any strong recommendations from folks who've been there recently? We're definitely going to Yardbird, and are probably going to grab a meal at Pubbelly as well, but very interested in breakfast/lunch-type spots, and Cuban food recommendations. And any recommendations on where to grab a decent cocktail.

 

Thanks.


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#97 Mark Dedrick

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 11:56 AM

This is the first of two posts on my trip to Miami this past weekend. Thanks to some research and some great recommendations we were able to find some really good cocktails this time around.

 

Broken Shaker - This was our favorite spot for drinks on our entire trip. It's a bit north of the main section of South Beach, and located in a hostel (The Freehand), and does not have the feel or the clientele of the South Beach spots just a short distance south. The cocktails we had were fantastic (both off of their menu, and I can't remember the details), and they were $11, which for Miami felt like an absolute steal. The bar itself is pretty tiny, but very cool, and there's plenty of seating out by the pool.  A real gem.

 

Regent Cocktail Club - This was recommended to me by a friend, and then again by the bartender at Broken Shaker while we were there. He described it as the other side of their coin, and that feels about right. Regent Cocktail Club is located in the Gale, which is right at the corner of 17th and Collins. It is much more formal feeling than Broken Shaker, the bartenders are wearing suits and ties, and the decor is more fancy hotel bar or supper club than shabby beach bar. Similarly, however, great cocktails, extremely well prepared. My favorite drink here was the Rattlesnake (rye, lemon juice, egg white in an absinthe-rinsed glass). I have heard that it can get very busy later on a weekend night, which can compromise the experience. We went when they opened at 7 pm and loved it.

 

Bar Centro - This is Jose Andres' bar at the SLS (Bazaar is his restaurant there, and we did not try it). We attempted to visit after dinner at about 11 pm on Thursday night and it was absolutely slammed. Since at that point we just wanted to sit down, relax and have a cocktail we did not stay, but instead returned the following day at around 6 pm. We enjoyed it. The cocktails on their menu tend towards the fruity side, which makes sense since you are sitting a few feet from the pool, and a stone's throw from the beach. When I put myself in the bartender's hands, however, he made a version of an old fashioned, so they do fine with boozier cocktails as well. The bartenders were very professional, and really know what they're doing, and take the time to make their drinks properly. Or at least they do when there are only six people sitting at their bar. I have no idea how they would keep up on a busy night.

 

The Raleigh  - The bar inside the Raleigh makes me feel like I went back in time to the 1960s. I really like this place. I've never found the bar to be overly packed, the bartenders are extremely professional, and they make the classics, or at least the classics on their menu, very well. 

 

Again, every single one of these places will add at least 18% gratuity automatically, so be aware.


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#98 Mark Dedrick

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Posted 20 February 2013 - 06:16 PM

I don't have time to fully flesh my restaurant thoughts right now, but I wanted to at least get something down before I forgot completely (a common occurrence for me).

 

  • Yardbird. Awesome. Strongly recommend it. Incredible whiskey selection.
  • Pubbelly. I really love this place, and had no trouble getting in on a Friday night (two people). Everything we had was ridiculously delicious, particularly the McBelly and the short rib tartare.
  • Michael's Genuine. Good, but did not shine nearly as bright as the other two spots. I would not advise against going, I'd happily go back, but I wouldn't necessarily go out of my way to stop by on my next trip to town.
  • Joe's Stone Crab. Had never been before, was told I had to, and I'm glad we did. Old school charm, great service, perfectly enjoyable meal. And we sat right near Don Shula, which was pretty sweet.
  • Puerto Sagua. Really liked it once again, both the empanads and the oxtail stew.
  • Las Olas Cafe. Really loved this place. Very low key cafeteria type place a few blocks off of the main drags in Miami Beach (6th and Euclid I think?). No menu, you simply point at stuff. Great crispy pork, beans, rice, tamales and a really good Cuban sandwich.  Strongly recommend it.

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#99 DanielK

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Posted 20 February 2013 - 11:09 PM

Did they actually have stone crab claws available at Joe's? It's the worst season on record for stone crabs - the catch is 10% of last year's level.



#100 Mark Dedrick

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Posted 21 February 2013 - 10:39 AM

Did they actually have stone crab claws available at Joe's? It's the worst season on record for stone crabs - the catch is 10% of last year's level.

They did. I wasn't expecting them, because I'd read something to that effect but was advised to still go. And they had all sizes available. There were four sizes, I think, and we got the second to the largest. We also got the wedge salad, conch fritters and some sort of side dish. And I felt as if I stepped back in time when I entered. I think if I paired dinner here with drinks at the Raleigh I'd turn into Don Draper. Or that may be asking too much, perhaps just Pete Campbell. 


Formerly DCDuck

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