Recs for 2 foodies in Miami for 6 days
We'll be in Miami for 6 days end of Nov staying in SoBe and would love some recs for some interesting places to try while we're there. Will likely spend 2 of these days in Everglades/Keys & would like recs for places there too. We love seafood, Latin American food and jsut about anything unique and authentic. Decor doesn't matter - it's the food that counts. No chain resto recs please!
If you're sticking just to South Beach while in Miami, my recommendations would be:
All do "New American", for lack of a better term. Mark's in particular does a nice job of incorporating local product but they're all very good.
To feel a little more local influence, you could try Yuca on Lincoln Road. This place was cutting edge several years ago in incorporating Cuban and other Latin ideas, has become sort of old hat now but I still think the food is great. The guava-BBQ ribs in particular are outstanding.
On the lower-brow side, again just focusing on South Beach and getting some local flavor, I'd suggest:)
Tap Tap - Haitian food in a very funky spot on 5th St.
Puerto Sagua - typical Cuban food in a diner-style location on South Beach (7th & Collins
If you want to broaden your horizons beyond South Beach, I would add:
Ortanique (Coral Gables) - excellent Nuevo Caribbean
Cacao (Gables) - high-brow pan-Latin with influences from all over South and Central America.
Jaguar (Coconut Grove) - ceviches in particular are very good, and quite a variety (you can get a "spoon sampler" of a half-dozen and figure out what you like)
Casa Juancho (8th Street)- fairly traditional Spanish (not Cuban)
For a really unusual experience: in the back of the Citgo gas station on 17th Street and US1 (coming South off I-95 as you would be if coming from the Beach towards Coconut Grove) there is a fantastic little tapas place called El Carajo. They've got about 20-30 tapas choices plus about half dozen or more entrees, plus a surprisingly nice wine selection (take anything off the shelf for $15 over retail). The piquillo peppers stuffed with bacalao with a squid ink sauce is one of the greatest dishes I have had - anywhere.
My tongue is tingling thinking about ceviche - I LOVE IT. ON that note - anywhere with good pulpo ceviche (octopus)? We are definately willing to go outside of SoBe to explore the city so any recs welcome. Thanks!
If you want something unique on the way to the Keys, try Alabama Jacks. Take the Turnpike all the way down to Florida City, and there will be a left turn to Card Sound Road (I think there's a Long John Silver's on the right). Take Card Sound to the toll booth (it was $1 last time I was there) and you're in Downtown Card Sound -- which is really just a coupla boat slips and Alabama Jack's. You want a Florida seafood shack w/wooden tables and crusty sailors? You got it. Continue down Card Sound and you'll hook up w/US 1 right around Key Largo to get to the rest of the Keys.
On the beach there's Altamar for good seafood. It's on the quieter west end of Lincoln Road. Basic and fresh. There's also River Oyster Bar fairly near the Beach in Downtown. Good raw bar with a couple of ceviches and the occasional octopus dish. Good all around seafood and Latin/Caribbean inspired food. Novecento in Miami Beach and in Brickell (near River Oyster) serve Argentine food (steak, pastas, etc.). Not fabulous but very Argentine.
Frodnesor always has good suggestions so take mine as an addition to his list. Jaguar for ceviche is a good suggestion, especially because of the variety. Also the crepe with sweet cream dessert is awesome.
Novecento for Foodies???
Come on, you must be kidding. It's one of the WORST culinary nightmares in town (And there are plenty).
I second Altamar, very fresh fish and seafood, the location and the service though are not on a high note.
To venture outside of the beach area:
The River (It changed its name from The River Oyster Bar) is very good.
Pascal Oudin's eponymous restaurant in Coral Gables, one of the most respectable toques in town, great modern French cuisine here.
Duo in South Miami Avenue near the Four Seasons Hotel, modern ambiance, wonderful food presentations and exceptional wines.
Timo, in Sunny Isles, simpler menu but nice, charming service and decor, location is less than average.
Azul, fabulous setting and views, but the food is perhaps less inspired than ever before, and expect to pay $$$$.
Avoid the foodie scams:
Forge, Prime 112, Barton G.
I don't particularly feel strong about any of the first recs, Neither Talula nor Mark's provided any memorable experiences, Nemo is also good but not great.