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Best Eats In Miami

m
Molto E Jul 12, 2007 06:59 PM

Hi,

I will be in the area and have 4 dinners and lunches to sample the best Miami has to offer. I am looking at Michy's, Casa Tua, Cielo ( I know it is in Boca but Angela Harnett is a great chef), La Goulue Christian Delouvrier ( have not heard anything about it), Cuban choice (friends that lived in Mia some years ago rave about Versaille but I have not read anything that good on the board), Evolution (have read most negative)...appreciate any suggestions.

Many Thanks,

Molto E

  1. w
    winewine Apr 14, 2010 06:38 PM

    Timo in Sunny Isles is great and very consistent..great wine program
    Michy's and Red Light over Biscayne Boulevard are great...
    There is a cunan restaurant in Miami Beach on washington Av near Lincoln Rd named Bella Cuba..nice and good.
    Escopazzo better than Casa Tua...

    -----
    Michy's
    6927 Biscayne Blvd., Miami, FL 33138

    Escopazzo Restaurant
    1311 Washington Avenue, Miami Beach, FL 33139

    Red Light
    7700 Biscayne Blvd, Miami, FL 33138

    Casa Tua
    1700 James Avenue, Miami Beach, FL 33139

    Timo Restaurant
    17624 Collins Avenue, Sunny Isles, FL 33160

    1. d
      DiveBarIntellect Jul 18, 2007 05:19 PM

      Thank you all for the suggestions. I actually made a reservation at Michy's, but will also try to visit Talula as well. Thanks again!

      3 Replies
      1. re: DiveBarIntellect
        t
        tpigeon Jul 18, 2007 06:02 PM

        I think you chose well. Remember: baked alaska at Michys...

        1. re: tpigeon
          d
          dlgc Sep 29, 2007 03:54 PM

          We had dinner at Michaels Genuine last night and it was as good as ever. Bread salad, chicken, roast potato and banana pannini....doesn't get much better than this.

          1. re: dlgc
            j
            jangita Oct 6, 2007 02:20 PM

            I have just returned from a weekend visiting in Aventura area. My meal at Chef Allen was top notch and the service was perfect.
            I started with a warm mushroom salad--great meaty mushrooms and nice, not too overwhelming, dressing.
            For my entree I had red snapper with smokey shrimp hash. What a great combo--just enough smoke with great fresh pan fried fish.

            And the Valrohna chocolate souffle was a dream! Even the coffee was good.

      2. d
        DiveBarIntellect Jul 16, 2007 05:58 PM

        I'm going to piggy-back onto this conversation. I have only one day to spend in Miami, and I'm a NYC-foodie hoping to have a memorable dinner at restaurant that exemplifies what dining in Miami is all about. I'm more interested in the food than in the trend-setting scene. From what I've read on this board, it seems Miami restaurants focus more on the social scene than great cooking (something I'm familiar with in NYC), but I'm still optimistic!

        So far, I'm now convinced that I need to have lunch at Versailles. I just need to pick a place for dinner. I have a decent budget set aside, about $60/person. I looked into Osteria del Teatro, but the menu did not entice me. I checked out Talula's website, and the food looks great, but no prices are listed.

        With that, where should I have my one and only dinner in Miami?

        Thanks in advance for your opinions and advice!

        6 Replies
        1. re: DiveBarIntellect
          VAfoodie Jul 16, 2007 07:41 PM

          I'm visiting Miami now and eat a lot in NYC. As luck would have it for you, my two big meals so far have been at Talula's and Osteria del Treato. While the service at Osteria was wonderful, it was just very good Italian. Probably won't wow a New Yorker. Talula's on the other had was a huge hit with everyone at my table. Try the lamb chops. My daughter inhaled her porkchop. It is also definitely NOT a place.that puts scene before food. I've also been to Versaille and would suggest you look at Puerto Sagua on 7th and Collins as it seemed to have more to choose from on the menu, but Versaille is an institution in the heart of Calle Ocho if you are going there.

          1. re: VAfoodie
            taiga Jul 17, 2007 11:40 AM

            I would choose Versailles over Puerto Sagua because the experience at Versailles is priceless. Cuban food is not the sort of grand, experimental experience that you may have with Ferran Adria in Barcelona. Versailles probably hasn't changed the menu in 40 years. If there is any Cuban experimentation going on, it can be found in sandwiches and pastries next door to Versailles.

          2. re: DiveBarIntellect
            VAfoodie Jul 16, 2007 07:47 PM

            Oh and at Talula's entrees were $25-$39. To keep to your budget, you'll be drinking wine by the glass. They push the wine big time.

            1. re: DiveBarIntellect
              Frodnesor Jul 16, 2007 08:50 PM

              Osteria is supposed to be very good but there's nothing about it that is particularly Miami. Talula is all about the food with a good but not exclusive focus on local ingredients. Entrees should range from mid-$20s to close to $40 for some of the steaks (which are great). Wine at Talula has unfortunately gotten very pricey with little under $40/bottle and what's at that price point shouldn't be (because they are $12-15 retail bottles).

              A couple other suggestions are Michy's and Michael's Genuine. Both are run by chefs with long-time Miami connections (Michelle Bernstein, formerly of Azul, Michael Schwartz, formerly of Nemo, Afterglo) and really have the feel of "this is the food the chef wants to make". Michy's has an extensive menu of dishes that can all be ordered as small plates. At both places some dishes are much better than others and I'd suggest if you're interested a little reading on this board, where there is some good commentary.

              Versailles can be fun for the experience of the place (all mirrors and lights) but the food is no better than any number of other Cuban places.

              -----
              Michy's
              6927 Biscayne Blvd., Miami, FL 33138

              Talula
              210 23rd St, Miami Beach, FL 33139

              Michael's Genuine Food & Drink
              130 N.E. 40th Street, Miami, FL 33137

              1. re: Frodnesor
                f
                fishermb Jul 17, 2007 05:02 AM

                River Oyster House is my choice, great seafood, oysters, right by the Miami River in downtown Miami, I'm always very pleased when I go there.

                For Italian, Grazie on Washington Ave. on South Beach is always a pleaser.I've been going there since their Pinecrest days and have never had a bad experience, fresh pastas, some creative dishes, great customer service (Moeshe and Solomon are the nicest owners you'll meet)

              2. re: DiveBarIntellect
                yomyb Jul 17, 2007 09:30 AM

                For Osteria, you need to order the specials, the regular menu does not represent what they can do...at all. It is excellent.

              3. JonasBrand Jul 16, 2007 01:37 PM

                I must say Versailles has a great guava and cheese pastry.

                Any of the below are a good bet.

                River Oyster is great for lunch (try the Corvina Ceviche).

                At Sardinia be sure to order some Antipasti and the Pulpo (octopus) some of the best I have had.

                For a late night snack try Le Sandwicherie (French) or Davids Cafe (Cuban).

                -----
                Sardinia
                1801 Purdy avenue, Miami Beach, FL 33139

                Osteria Del Teatro
                1443 Washington Ave, Miami Beach, FL 33139

                River Oyster Bar
                650 S. Miami Ave., Miami, FL 33130

                Nobu Miami Beach
                1901 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach, FL 33139

                Le Sandwicherie
                229 NW 14th St, Miami, FL 33136

                David's Cafe II
                1654 Meridian Ave, Miami Beach, FL 33139

                1. m
                  Molto E Jul 16, 2007 07:46 AM

                  How do you rate the reviews at the Miami New Times??

                  29 Replies
                  1. re: Molto E
                    2top Jul 16, 2007 07:53 AM

                    I rate them by the reviewer. Pamela Robin Brandt knows her stuff. Lee Klein is a hack.

                    1. re: Molto E
                      yomyb Jul 16, 2007 07:53 AM

                      Not always reliable. Sometimes they are right on and sometimes you wonder: did they even try the place or did they just collect some cash and wrote an ad? Any particular place you read a review and are wondering about?

                      1. re: yomyb
                        m
                        Molto E Jul 16, 2007 09:40 PM

                        I have to double check on which reviewer wrote the review but Evolution had a fantastic review but on the boards...no love. Even the review for La Goulue was in the end positive but the details were so-so. I looked at the menus of Mark's and Talula and it seemed to have a number of components a dish...do the dishes work there or is it too many extra touches?

                        1. re: Molto E
                          Frodnesor Jul 17, 2007 06:08 AM

                          My first meal at Goulue was pretty good (really nice hangar steak) but 2 and 3 were downhill from there, and haven't been back since. For bistro level French I'd just as soon do Gourmet Diner.

                          I ate at Evolution recently and thought it was not quite as good as the glowing review, but not nearly as bad as many on the boards have said. A few dishes were fantastic, some were merely good, but I'd certainly go back for a special occasion dinner.

                          I find both Mark's and Talula generally do a successful job of avoiding the "too many notes" problem with some high-end cooking. There's a lot going on often, but I think both places have chefs who really concentrate on making the elements work together.

                          One interesting thing at Talula is that the menu bears the influence of both sides of a husband-wife chef team (both of whom were very successful chefs on their own before opening the restaurant together). Andrea Curto tends to be more out-there, while Frank Randazzo tends to keep it more simple (Frank's Char-Grilled Steak - especially the hangar or rib-eye - with onion rings is a great example).

                          As for Mark's, one of the raps on him actually is that his cooking is a little too subtle. I don't find this to be the case, but to each his own.

                          1. re: Frodnesor
                            m
                            Molto E Jul 17, 2007 08:22 AM

                            I am staying right behind Bal Harbour so the first night, because La Goulue is so close that may be the easiest spot for dinner. When you dined there was Delouvier actually cooking? I have Michy's sceduled for night two so I am good there. I am looking at Michael's Genuine, Mark's, Table 8, Evolution, Sardinia, or Teatro to fill the rest of the dinners. Lunches will be Cuban (not sure where), maybe Casa Tua, and up in the air for the rest. Many thanks for your continued help in answering my questions!!

                            Molto E

                            1. re: Molto E
                              Frodnesor Jul 17, 2007 10:41 AM

                              I have a suspician that Delouvier's presence at the Miami location is as ephemeral and fleeting as the presence of vermouth in a martini these days. If he's got any sense he sure isn't down here for the hot summer.

                              In any event, I might suggest if you're staying in Bal Harbour area you consider the following:

                              Cafe Ragazzi - right down the street from you, very nice Italian place, excellent pastas. Generally quite busy, often a line waiting outside.

                              Timo - about 10 minutes north up Collins Ave., one of my favorite places in town. Somewhat Mediterranean influenced. Can read up and see menu at the following links -
                              http://www.timorestaurant.com
                              http://www.restaurantelite.com/miami/...

                              -----
                              Timo
                              , FL

                              Cafe Ragazzi Restaurant
                              9500 Harding Ave, Surfside, FL 33154

                              1. re: Frodnesor
                                m
                                Molto E Jul 18, 2007 11:16 PM

                                Delouvier will not be back until Aug. 3 so that will most likely be a pass for me, unless I do a lunch there. I did not get to dinner until 10:00pm so I headed to Casa Tua, which is a lovely restaurant. My service was outstanding and wine pairings top-notch but I opted for the chef's tasting for $160 + $75 with pairings. I thought the price was FAR OUT OF LINE for the fare. I would probably go back one more time to order a la carte because the service was so GOOD, but at that price the level of cuisine should be FAR higher. I had a tomato burrata course that I did not eat because the tomatoes were not ripe at all and it was not taken off the bill (that was an addition to the chef's tasting). Day 2 to follow...Michy's for dinner!!

                                1. re: Molto E
                                  Frodnesor Jul 19, 2007 05:23 AM

                                  $160 for a tasting menu at Casa Tua?????? That's absolutely insane. Look, I haven't been to Tua because I'm not a big believer in overpriced Italian food, so I can't talk about the food, but that simply confirms my pre-judgment. That's significantly more than I've paid for tasting menus at The Modern in NY and Atelier de Joel Robuchon in Vegas (and any number of places that don't come to mind immediately) - and I can pretty much guarantee those meals were leagues better. Can you give a rundown on the rest of the menu other than the lousy tomato burrata?

                                  1. re: Frodnesor
                                    m
                                    Molto E Jul 19, 2007 05:55 AM

                                    Frod,

                                    When I saw the bill and reflected on the quality of the food only, I felt that it was a total joke. This was not Manresa, TFL, Atelier, etc, but the service was outstanding and the setting was lovely...though -

                                    1st course - tuna tartare ( needed seasoning), kumamoto oyster with transmontanous caviar and grapes, squash blossom stuffed with ricotta and goat cheese paired with Bruno Paillard Rose Premiere

                                    2nd course - Seared foie gras with white polenta crostino and cherry sauce paired with Fattoria le Pupille 'Solalto'

                                    3rd course - (addition because I love burrata) Burrata with tomato salad paired with Lackner Tinnacher Gelber Muskateller ( the truth is that any chef that cut those tomatoes should have not sent them out because they were closer to an apple rather than a ripe tomato...burrata was good)

                                    4th course - Risotto di Farro with lobster and black truffle sauce paired with Massolino Barolo...interesting flavors, the piece of lobster that adorned the dish was smaller than your thumb

                                    5th course - Ravioli stuffed with Castelmagno cheese, raw celery, walnuts and green pea sauce paired with Frederic Magnieu Puligny-Montrachet

                                    6th Red Mullet with aromatic crust, grilled polenta and white asparagus paired with Casa Marin Pinor Noir

                                    7th course - (absolute joke) Cast-iron seared Wagyu with fingerling potato sause and caramelized onions paired with Il Poggiolo Brunello di Montalcino...ok, the size of the two nubs of beef were not even the size of two thumb nails and one of them had grissle thru it)

                                    Dessert - Chocolate souffle, chocolate mousse, cherry and yogurt parfait.

                                    This really was a case of "what can have a bigger effect on the diner...good service or good food"? The service was outstanding but the food was lacking. I would go back and order a la carte because one time at a restaurant is not a fair gage.

                                    Molto E

                                    1. re: Molto E
                                      t
                                      tpigeon Jul 19, 2007 07:03 AM

                                      Well, you can't say you weren't warned....

                                      1. re: tpigeon
                                        m
                                        Molto E Jul 19, 2007 08:30 AM

                                        I still say that I would go back one more time...

                                        1. re: Molto E
                                          Frodnesor Jul 19, 2007 09:25 AM

                                          I just can't begin to get my head around a $160 tasting menu with thumb-bits for the high-priced proteins. For goodness sake, look at the current tasting menu for Mario Batali's Babbo in NYC:

                                          Bresaola with Fiddleheads and Pecorino
                                          “Ferentano,” Falesco 2005

                                          Pappardelle with Chanterelles and Thyme
                                          “Jurosa,” Lis Neris 2001

                                          Duck Tortelli with “Sugo Finto”
                                          Teroldego Rotaliano, Foradori 2003

                                          Grilled Lamb Loin with Favetta and Mint Pesto
                                          “Rosso d’Orsone,” Dal Fari 2000

                                          Coach Farm’s Finest with Fennel Honey
                                          Franciacorta Brut, Ca’ del Bosco NV

                                          Vanilla Bean Bavarese with Brown Butter and Laurel
                                          Vin Santo, Fattoria Montellori 199

                                          “Cioccolato e Aceto”
                                          Vin Santo di Chianti Classico, La Sala 1999

                                          Warm Apple and Walnut Budino with Cinnamon Gelato
                                          Moscato di Trani “Piani di Tufara,” Rivera 2004

                                          $75 per person *
                                          (Accompanying Wines $50 per person – As listed above)

                                          You could do that TWICE and still have change to spare! Yes, the Tua menu you described had some more luxe ingredients (caviar, lobster, truffle, lobster, wagyu beef) but it sure sounds like they're stretching them to the limit through parsimonious portioning.

                                          A la carte pricing doesn't look much kinder - apps $14-28, pastas $20-42, mains $38-55. Whole Branzino for 2 at $100? For that much the fish better jump off the plate and start swimming again!

                                          Again, give me 2 of the wood-oven roasted whole snapper at Michael's for $41 instead, and let me keep the change (never had it, actually, but our last visit we sat at the kitchen bar and salivated as we watched about a dozen of these come out of the oven during the time we were there).

                                          1. re: Frodnesor
                                            m
                                            Molto E Jul 19, 2007 01:59 PM

                                            Sardinia for lunch...GREAT

                                            1. re: Molto E
                                              t
                                              tpigeon Jul 19, 2007 02:28 PM

                                              Just as long as you dont eat their panini's. I really like the pastas, especially the carbonara and the garganelli.

                                              1. re: tpigeon
                                                t
                                                tpigeon Oct 7, 2007 05:34 AM

                                                They just changed the bread. The sandwiches are now an option though I have only tried the proscuttio mozzerella which was solid.

                                            2. re: Frodnesor
                                              f
                                              fultonbrewing Oct 7, 2007 05:18 AM

                                              But if you've eaten at Babbo you might change your mind. Granted I didn't do the tasting menu but I took my wife there for her birthday and it was a top-5 meal for me. The total bill came to just under $200 after tip (She's a cheap date -- doesn't drink).

                                              There are many places here where a $100+ per person meal can be had where the food isn't worth $10.99 but for a once a year, or once in a lifetime experience, I'll fork over the money to be wowed at the table.

                                              1. re: fultonbrewing
                                                Frodnesor Oct 7, 2007 07:05 AM

                                                That was the point of my comparison - not that Babbo is expensive, but rather that Casa Tua is a complete ripoff relatively speaking. I have no problem with $100+ tasting menus and have little doubt that Babbo is worth it.

                                                1. re: Frodnesor
                                                  t
                                                  tpigeon Oct 7, 2007 08:59 AM

                                                  Comparing Babbo to Casa Tua is like comparing an awesome restaurant to an overpriced decent restaurant :).

                                            3. re: Molto E
                                              t
                                              tpigeon Jul 19, 2007 01:46 PM

                                              Masochist :)

                                      2. re: Molto E
                                        lax2mia Jul 19, 2007 10:41 AM

                                        If you spend $160 on food at Michy's I can almost guarantee it'll top what you had at Casa Tua. Just remember, the street in fronth of Michy's is torn up. Turn left on 69th and left into the parking lot for valet. Will be there tonight for GFs b-day so I look forward to comparing meals tomorrow.

                                        1. re: lax2mia
                                          herbage Sep 20, 2007 12:06 PM

                                          What's the deal with the valet at Michy's? You pull into a spot behind the restaurant and they charge you $10 bucks to "valet"? Insane. I always see tons of cars parked in the "off-roading" section in front of the restaurant...wonder if that is valet as well?

                                          1. re: herbage
                                            ulterior epicure Mar 4, 2009 01:58 PM

                                            We parked ourselves. In their lot. So did others. No one said a word.

                            2. re: Molto E
                              lax2mia Jul 16, 2007 07:57 AM

                              I'd rely on any reviewer from the New Times over those from The Miami Herald. Their head reviewer is a joke. Might want to check out Sunpost as well.

                              1. re: lax2mia
                                Frodnesor Jul 16, 2007 08:12 AM

                                I am wary of Sunpost - don't think I've ever seen a negative review and I suspect they're just shilling for advertisers (their politics coverage is great though). New Times at least are not afraid to be critical, though sometimes it seems to be just for the sake of relishing their own clever turn of phrase. I also think they're often lazy and fail to pay multiple visits to see whether or not their experience was representative, good or bad.

                                There's no reviewer locally who I feel their palate is completely aligned with mine, but isn't that always the case? Same is true of the Herald. Another issue is that many of the Herald's online reviews are quite old and out of date.

                                1. re: lax2mia
                                  taiga Jul 16, 2007 03:27 PM

                                  Both critics are knowledgable though tend to be a bit pretentious when inevitably intent upon impressing our upscal residents and tourists. I wish they would visit more holes in the wall.

                                  1. re: taiga
                                    Frodnesor Jul 21, 2007 10:34 PM

                                    In going back and looking, I actually find that the Herald reviews are fairly conservative, at least as far as ratings go. In Miami-Dade there are only 13 restaurants which got their top, 4-star rating. Unfortunately most of those appear to be woefully out of date (a problem I previously noted - they still have reviews posted of restaurants that have been closed for years!) and there are some bizarre ones in the old group (anyone ever heard of Crabby's Smoke House in Opa-Locka?).

                                    Ignoring that issue and focusing on those that appear to have been reviewed "recently" (i.e., past few years), there are only 4 4-star restaurants: Graziano's, Michy's, Yakko-San, and Timo. Which happens to include 3 of my 5 favorite local restaurants (I'd add Talula and Michael's to my list, in no particular order - and Graziano's doesn't suck either). To my taste, at least, that's pretty good.

                                    1. re: Frodnesor
                                      m
                                      Molto E Jul 22, 2007 04:35 AM

                                      Many thanks for all the help with info on the dining scene in Miami. I ended up trying...Casa Tua (great scene but overpriced food), Michy's ( GREAT restaurant), La Goulue for lunch ( good bistro food, steak tartare and frisee salad), Osteria del Teatro (disappointing), Sardinia (Great restaurant), Michael's Genuine (Great restaurant), Rascal House (it is what it is the corned beef and pastrami was good)...again many, many thanks...still have a lunch to go...maybe Cuban and I will be posting some pics over on the Gullet soon.

                                      1. re: Molto E
                                        m
                                        mialebven Jul 22, 2007 12:06 PM

                                        What's the Gullet?

                                        1. re: mialebven
                                          m
                                          Molto E Jul 22, 2007 09:57 PM

                                          eGullet...I am able to load all the pics of the meals over there.

                              2. yomyb Jul 15, 2007 04:23 PM

                                Of the ones you mentioned, please go to Michy's. We went on Friday after so many Frodnesor recommendations :-) and loved it loved it. Best oysters I have had in a long time (from Washington state). We enjoyed everything we had. BTW...anyone had the fried chicken there? Thinking about this one for next time but it hasn't been mentioned on any previous Michy's posts.... Anyway, I would definitely add Osteria del Teatro as well and hope you really enjoy your trip.

                                4 Replies
                                1. re: yomyb
                                  l
                                  lorilaw Jul 15, 2007 07:22 PM

                                  I have had the fried chicken....it was really good, but not good enough to change my mainstays...ribs, fettucini and bread pudding...try it next time in the smaller portion and see if you like it!

                                  1. re: lorilaw
                                    m
                                    Molto E Jul 15, 2007 07:41 PM

                                    Michy's is a definite

                                    Cuban will be a lunch and may be of a double dip of Versaille and one of the other choices...what are the dishes not to miss?

                                    Other spots up for debate...Mark's South Beach...Nobu...Osteria del Teatro...I will be around Bal Harbour but will drive for eats.

                                    Thank you for your thoughts...

                                    1. re: Molto E
                                      lax2mia Jul 16, 2007 06:20 AM

                                      If you're going to make it out to Versailles you might want to go a little deeper into Coral Gables and go to Havana Harry's. It doesn't have the history and kitsch of Versailles, but it's a little less frenetic and more homey. Try the vaca frita de pollo (literally chicken friend cow, usually this is made with beef that's boiled then seared till crunchy. The chicken version is make with a sour orange mojo and it's as addicting a dish as any).

                                      1. re: lax2mia
                                        Frodnesor Jul 16, 2007 06:52 AM

                                        Actually I'd say that a "vaca frita de pollo" is a "cow-fried chicken" (sort of like the converse of a chicken-fried steak!)

                                        Look, here's a recipe:
                                        http://www.recipegoldmine.com/cch/h7....

                                2. m
                                  mialebven Jul 15, 2007 02:19 AM

                                  For Cuban fusion, Yuca. For Cuban upscale, Cohiba. For Cuban trendy casual, Larios or (less trendy) Havana Harry's. For Cuban standard, Las Culebrinas.

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: mialebven
                                    taiga Jul 16, 2007 03:23 PM

                                    After all the comparisons, in the commoners range, I prefer Versailles to each Lario's though all are populated by Miami Cubans.

                                  2. l
                                    lorilaw Jul 14, 2007 10:40 PM

                                    I have been to all of your considerations. I LOVE Michy's. The Fettucini Alfredo and Rids are to die for. Also order the Bread Pudding for dessert..you wont be sorry. I order these three everytime I go and then try something new.

                                    Casa Tua is very nice and the ambiance is nice. However, it is incredibly expensive for very small portion sizes and while it is good I don't think it is good enough to justify the price. If budget is not a concern I would go to say you've been there.

                                    Cielo is fine...nothing memorable to note about the experience.

                                    I go to Versailles when I want cuban and so do all of my Cuban American friends. People get put out by the fact that tour buses pull up but trust me it is still authentic.

                                    I would also check out Joe's or Monty's which are Miami institutions.

                                    The brunch at St. Michel is great as is brunch at the Tides.

                                    Smith and Wollinskys is also an amazing meal with a beautiful Miami view...I know it is a chain of sorts but it really is good.

                                    7 Replies
                                    1. re: lorilaw
                                      m
                                      Molto E Jul 14, 2007 11:47 PM

                                      Thanks...I had a suggestion of Lariot for Cuban???

                                      1. re: Molto E
                                        d
                                        DownHomeSouthernaires Sep 18, 2007 04:01 PM

                                        the best Cuban food i have had in Miami would be Ay Mama Ines (Bird Rd. [sw 40th st.] & 119th?) it's actually "Afro-Cuban" i guess. but its different than most cuban places and it has an awesome selection of gamier fare such as Rabbit, Crocodile, Frog. There is this delicious Mushroom with Cheese appetizer that blew me away last time i had it., and their Arroz con Pollo is made to order, so it's gotta be good. There's also a white piano, so i'm guessing live music on weekends, mayeb some Bola de Nieve type idea.

                                      2. re: lorilaw
                                        d
                                        diablita FL Jul 15, 2007 05:57 AM

                                        "I go to Versailles when I want cuban and so do all of my Cuban American friends. People get put out by the fact that tour buses pull up but trust me it is still authentic."

                                        I have no problem with tour buses. There is just better Cuban food in South Florida. Las Culebrinas for one. Even Miami Havana (lunch only) on Miller is better. OTOH, if the total experience is more important than just the food, Versailles is a fine choice.

                                        1. re: diablita FL
                                          l
                                          lorilaw Jul 15, 2007 08:30 AM

                                          I went to eat at Las Culebrinas a few months ago and I thought it was terrible...is there a specific branch that is good...maybe I picked the wrong one...which LC do you find better than Versailles?

                                          1. re: lorilaw
                                            s
                                            Steve Jul 19, 2007 08:45 AM

                                            People are not getting sick from Las Culebrinas! The original location in Miami just north of Coral Gables is fantastic. They have a vaca frita that is served over baked plaintains which have been soaked in wine, heavenly. This is a great place. If anyone has had a "terrible" meal there, it was an unlikely abberation.

                                          2. re: diablita FL
                                            l
                                            luluz Jul 17, 2007 10:45 AM

                                            Las Culebrinas does TASTE better than Versailles- but we took my in-laws there a few months ago and we all got some kind of food-bourne illness.

                                          3. re: lorilaw
                                            p
                                            phneale Jul 16, 2007 03:36 PM

                                            Not this time of year for Joe's. Stone crabs are out of season. I agree on Versailles. Get the mariquitas.

                                          4. m
                                            Molto E Jul 12, 2007 07:33 PM

                                            help me narrow down this list:

                                            Michy's definite

                                            La Goule Christian Delouvrier 70%

                                            Cielo 80%

                                            Casa Tua or Quattro Gastronomia or Escopazzo or other

                                            Table 8

                                            Pascal's on Ponce

                                            any of the Mark's joints

                                            North One 10

                                            is Mosaico around?

                                            thanks,

                                            Molto E

                                            5 Replies
                                            1. re: Molto E
                                              Frodnesor Jul 13, 2007 05:50 AM

                                              Michy's is a definite but I must caution you to diminish expectations a bit. It's a fantastic neighborhood place which has been elevated to gourmet destination by lots of national press. Check this board for tips as well - some dishes are a lot better than others. Here's a good start -

                                              http://www.chowhound.com/topics/358521

                                              Goulue is really mediocre. I have no idea how this guy has such a great reputation in NY. Skip.

                                              Don't know from Cielo, out of my geographic range.

                                              Tua, Gastronomia - have not been to either but the general consensus seems to be that they are highly overrated (Tua has its fans). Escopazzo is better liked, but I haven't been in a long time. I'd sugest Sardinia for Italian over any of them.

                                              Table 8 - went once, thought it was pretty good, was not so wowed that I felt compelled to return immediately.

                                              Pascal's - nice, fairly traditional French. Nothing particularly Miami about it.

                                              Mark's (South Beach) - I think this is one of the real under-the-radar places locally. Always good execution, high quality ingredients, some nice focus on local product ... some find it a little bland but I'm a fan.

                                              Mosaico is gone.

                                              Other thoughts:

                                              Talula - one of my favorites on South Beach. Husband-wife chef team both of whom previously had their own restaurants (Andrea Curto at Wish, Frank Randazzo at Gaucho Room and several other places). A little more downscale than other SoBe places but the food is top-notch.
                                              http://www.talulaonline.com

                                              Timo - Sunny Isles - another somewhat underrated place, but again I think the food is just oustanding. Menu is updated every couple months, something of a mediterranean bent.
                                              http://www.timorestaurant.com
                                              Can see menu here (also Michy's):
                                              http://www.restaurantelite.com/miami/restaurants.html

                                              Michael's Genuine - Design District - Michael Schwartz is a vet of several SoBe restaurants (Nemo, Afterglow) and this new place in the Design District may be best yet. Again you should find lots of commentary on this board.
                                              http://www.michaelsgenuine.com

                                              -----
                                              Michy's
                                              6927 Biscayne Blvd., Miami, FL 33138

                                              Sardinia
                                              1801 Purdy avenue, Miami Beach, FL 33139

                                              Mark's South Beach
                                              1120 Collins Ave, Miami Beach, FL 33139

                                              Timo
                                              , FL

                                              Michael's Genuine Food & Drink
                                              130 N.E. 40th Street, Miami, FL 33137

                                              1. re: Frodnesor
                                                m
                                                Molto E Jul 13, 2007 09:22 AM

                                                Thank you for your insight...disappointed about goulue...I as going to put Sardinia on that list...I will check out your picks and may return with more questions...thanks again!!

                                                Molto E

                                                1. re: Molto E
                                                  t
                                                  tpigeon Jul 14, 2007 06:43 AM

                                                  Frod is accurate (especially about Tua and Quattro) but I like table 8 more than he does and think it is as good as talula. The herald just wrote up the new restaurant @ the tides and said it was very good btw. That might be an option as well. I have never been to that place so I cannot tell you firsthand.

                                                  Had some really good food @ nobu last night so it is back on my list of top places - it is a chain though so I would not put it on the list -- anyway I had:

                                                  I ordered the creamy rock shrimp tempura - spicy (you must request spicy) for the first time and it was pretty awesome - spicy makes better than the regular creamy rock shrimp. They also had the white truffle scallops dish special that was even better than the black cod miso - this, despite the fact that truffles are way out of season -not sure how they got them...finally there was this salmon sashimi salad (i think) that was even better than their regular sashimi salad.

                                                  1. re: tpigeon
                                                    m
                                                    Molto E Jul 14, 2007 05:37 PM

                                                    Thanks...Nobu could work...what about Osteria del Teatro?

                                                    1. re: Molto E
                                                      t
                                                      tpigeon Jul 15, 2007 11:20 AM

                                                      Them too :). Osteria is great

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