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2 Nights in South Beach - Ideas?

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We will be in South Beach for two nights - a Sunday and a Monday - in June, and like to plan meals, activities, accommodations etc. ahead. We're looking for recommendations for two dinners and a lunch. Al fresco tables a plus. Just about any type of food is game - we really like Italian, pan-Asian and seafood, and would love to try some good Cuban or South American. We'll pass on American-style steakhouses. Looking for moderate prices (OK if they sting a little bit), fairly casual atmosphere, and we're happy to secure reservations -- but we have NO interest in trendy, attitude-filled, hard-to-get-into hotspots. What would be some good recommendations that fit our preferences?

(The more I think about it, casual will be a big plus - these two days will be a prelude to spending the rest of the week in the Keys, to give you an idea of just how casual we'll be.)

Thanks in advance!

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  1. If you're looking for casual and not very swanky, then I'd have to say GRILLFISH is a sure bet for fresh fish. Specifically, I LOVE the grilled grouper there. It's always consistently good, so whenever I'm in Miami Beach, I order that, and I haven't been disappointed yet. The side dishes are ok, but it's the grouper that I love since I can't get that out on the west coast as readily.

    For Key West, you can get more grouper at Conch Republic. Great restaurant looking out onto the pier. I liked their Key lime pie there too.

    Can you tell I am a big fan of grouper???

    1. I would do Alta Mar instead of grillfish - although a bit more expensive, it is better and you can eat outside unlike grillfish.

      I would do lunch @ MR chu's. They serve Dim Sum and it is awesome. Even though it is not pan asian it is probably my favorite lunch place in all of sobe. The dumplings are that good.

      Italian -- I would do rosinella, possibly sardinia (could be too trendy for your tastes though they take no reservations nor have any type of doorman but it is a trendy vibe), or fanucci's. In no particular order btw. You can sit outside in all these places.

      1 Reply
      1. re: tpigeon

        I was in SoBe last year. Had good meals at both Alta Mar and Pacific Time. I thought my best meal was at Pacific Time. The scallop dish was amazing.

      2. You can also do a search on this board as this topic has been covered extensively. Here's some examples:

        http://www.chowhound.com/topics/389948
        http://www.chowhound.com/topics/32903...

        1 Reply
        1. re: lax2mia

          My apologies. I only scanned the first page of posts before adding my own.