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Smith & Wollensky, Miami Beach ? about reservations and timing

We're trying to plan a nice evening out for steak and a view of cruiseships. I'd like to go on Friday, since it's actually my birthday, but Saturdays and Sundays are when all the cruiseships sail and I'm there for the view as well.

Is it a better idea to go on Saturday? Should we get there at 4:00 to get a window table? How are they about honoring reservation requests for window seats?

And I did a search on S & W and I see a lot of people bashing the place. I happen to like Morton's would like to venture off into another steakhouse with more atmosphere. Why do so many people not like it so much?

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    1. re: tpigeon

      Details please. I'm trying to plan my b'day bash. :)

      1. re: OysterHo

        It has a chain feel even thought it's a little more expensive than most chains. If you like Morton's maybe this will be OK, but I wouldn't go for something special like my birthday. And besides, if it's June, you probably won't be able to see the cruise ships leave because we're having torrential downpours pretty much daily from around 3 to 7. If you're set on seeing ships have a drink at the outside, tent-covered bar, watch a ship leave (wave goodby to the tourists) and then go to dinner somewhere else. Prime 112 and Nemo are closeby as well as the new Danny Devito place (jury still out on that one). There are so many places I'd go to before S&W but if you like that kind of thing...

        1. re: lax2mia

          S&W's miami location is much worse than mortons. As for details, what can I say other than the steak is not great there. I heard the hamburgers were but never tried them so you could give the hamburgers a shot.

          This place has probably the best location of any restaurant in south beach. You cannot beat the views. Yet I don't know anyone who eats there. Everyone I know chooses to eat steak at a different place.

          1. re: tpigeon

            why not wait till miami spice program which covers the entire months of august and september to eat at s and w.They offer one of the best value selections of a program that most other restaurants just want to fob off chicken,churrasco,and chilean salmon for $20 for 3 course lunch,$30 for 3 course dinner(this year raised to $22 for lunch,$35 for dinner).I ate there twice.Had the caesar salad to start(one of approx 5 to choose from)then had a filet mignon,then a cheesecake.Great deal for $20.The other time i had their signature crackling pork dish.I salute s and w for offering items off their regular menu instead of cheap special items that a majority of other restaurants on the miami spice program offered last year.

            1. re: travlnmike

              Thank you for all your replies, I really appreciate it. I love Morton's (in Boca), but was willing to try a new steakhouse because I get bored of the same offerings and besides, it's my birthday! :D

              I love the view and setting description of S&W, but I don't want to sacrifice food quality for it. Living in northwest Broward, I certainly don't want to drive all the way to sobe for an ok or even good steak dinner, just to watch two ships sail by. I may give it a go when the spice thing comes back though. :)

              I'd LOVE to try Prime 112, it sounds awesome, but we have a couple of young adults in tow and I think it might be too costly (I'm trying to be considerate to the meal payer) and I read somewhere (here?) that hundreds of people are turned away on the weekends! :O

              I hate Shula's @ Alexander Hotel. The filet mignon was the best I've ever had, but the Miami spice experience there was awful (service, sides, and dessert - no chocolate?!)

              I had considered Jackson's in FLL. My best friend loves it there and she doesn't like Morton's. So I thought it might be interesting - on the other hand, maybe since she and I don't agree on Morton's, maybe I'll hate it. But I used to love Burt & Jack's years ago, so there's that. ;)

              I'm more confused than ever! And if you've made it this far in reading my post, I appreciate it. :D I guess I need to keep searching for options.

                1. re: tpigeon

                  How about The Forge? Haven't been there in ages and the views are not S&W but I am sure it will be a better time and better food...There is always a party going on there on the weekends. Anyone been there lately?

                      1. re: yomyb

                        Thanks you guys! I think we're going to Trina's in FLL - unless I change my mind again. ;)

                        I would love to go to the Forge one day. I was born in Miami (1960) and I've never been. Sad, but true. Never been to Joe's Stone Crab either.

                        I have a lot of places to try one day, for sure.

    2. I suggest the Argentinian restaurant Baires Grill...every steak is delicious. The steaks are 1000x better than Prime 112, less expensive, rarely a wait, and no BS attitude. Corner of 6th St. and Washington - also has a nice garden. Ask for Ricky or Marcello the owners. Argentinians are night owls, so the place doesnt get busy until after 9.

      1 Reply
      1. I went for Miami Spice and requesting that menu automatically made us less of customers.

        The service was horrible, no one was nice. The hostess call me by my last name- no Prefix though, I thought that was unacceptable. Our waitress to our order and we didn't see her until she asked us if we wanted coffee after we were already half way through our desserts.

        The food wasn't incredible either. The truffled macaroni and cheese was burnt on top and the macaroni was way too overcooked. I got the steak sandwich and while the actual steak wasn't too bad the mushrooms smelled like feet and urine. It was GROSS, I ended up just eating the actual meat only.

        Miami Subs has better fries.

        The dessert wasn't horrible but because the rest of the experience was so bad it would have had to be remarkable to stand out in my mind- it wasn't.

        I'm a Sales Manager at a hotel here in South Beach and I will make it a point to make sure my front desk does not reccommend this horrible place. I'm still grossed out by the mushrooms and as a hospitality worker I cannot believe the service is that bad there.

        AWFUL...

        1 Reply
        1. re: MichelleD

          Can't say you were not warned :).

        2. i went to s and w tues lunch for miami spice menu and had excellent meal and service noontime.I ordered caesar salad(make sure to ask for anchovies) filet mignon(my check implied it was 10 oz)was delivered the mr to med i requested,and i had cheesecake for dessert.One strategy i use on spice program is i tell the waiter upfront to put $10 tip on check before he gives it to me.Although he wasnt allowed to do so,i think he appreciated the fact that $10 tip on $23.95 check (i had no drinks) meant that he was not losing out by having a spice program customer.I feel bad for michelle who had bad experience at s and w.Being originally form philly i hesitate to order any miami version of a cheesteak sandwich.