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Oct 20, 2007 09:37 AM

Best mussels in Miami

Mussels on menus are really commonplace these days, and we're constantly surprised by the various sizes of the mussels, and the quality and components of the various broths and sauces. Some are cream based, some tomato, some wine based. I think we've had every mussel in town, but we'd love to hear some surprise choices! Any nominees for The Best Mussels In Miami? Here's where we've been, our faves marked * :

Michaels *
Carpaccio / Vivi *
Opa South Beach
Perricone's *
Clarke's *
Mandarin Oriental
Le Bon

On the downside, we've had every mussel variety at Le Bon, and we've never, ever had a very good broth there, I'm shocked to report.

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  1. Ciao>

    Try the Asian flavored broth at Joe Allen (ginger, soy, sesame). 1787 Purdy 305.531.7007


    Try the Greek flavored broth at the Lido (Standard Hotel) 40 Island Ave 305.673.8181


    1. I would add the Red Stripe-steamed mussels w/ scotch bonnet at Ortanique.

      Les Halles also does a pretty nice moules & frites which you can get in a few different styles (traditional, "billi bi" w/ saffron & cream, or "portuguese" with chorizo and tomato).

      Surprised to hear your disappointment in Le Bon. I've liked them every way I've had 'em there, especially the "Le Bon" w/ belgian beer, celery & bacon. I do not like their mussel platters, though, which are broiled and topped with cheese.

      Just a side-note that the mussels at Michael's (with the spicy harissa-tomato broth and the black rice) are a carry-over from the dish he first created at Nemo, which I think they're still on the menu.

      13 Replies
      1. re: Frodnesor

        I've always been happy with the mussels at Le Bon. I think that it has something to do with the fact that they're reasonably priced, especially during their "beat the clock" special. With mussels being so inexpensive and easy to make at home, I just have a hard time justifying paying lots for them in restaurants.

        1. re: Nick

          I've eaten at Le Bon at least a dozen times, and I've always been happy with the mussels. Cooked properly, tasty broths. But then it's pretty hard to mess up mussels. Posiibly the easiest thing to cook with all the readily available farmed varieties.

          1. re: Nick

            I love the mussel pots at Le Bon. The "Le Bon" broth with bacon in it is my favorite. Like Nick said, the mussels are good, sometimes huge, and the cost is very affordable. The little pot of fries, ketchup, and mayo kicks ass as well.

            1. re: Blind Mind

              I'm resurrecting this thread with a question for the posters. I've been poking around the various menus in town looking at mussel dishes and noticed that Le Bon is a) the only one I found with multiple mussel dishes and b) the only one that doesn't use the supposedly higher quality Prince Edward Island mussels (which accounts for their affordability).

              I've only recently learned about P.E.I. mussels and, while I've long been a fan of making mussel pots at home, I'm suddenly concerned that I've never actually a really good mussel. What do you guys think? Are P.E.I. mussels all they're cracked up to be? And if you're going put them in a pot instead of eating them by themselves is a Mediterranean mussel all you really need?

                1. re: billjac

                  Not sure where the mussels came from that they used at Le Bon last Monday, but they were awesome.

                  1. re: lax2mia

                    I've never been disappointed with the mussels at Le Bon. We order them "fisherman's style", which is basically like getting a bowl of lobster bisque with steamed mussels on top!

                  2. re: billjac

                    Off the top of my head, Les Halles does mussels in a few different preps - mariniere w/ white wine shallot & garlic, "billi-bi" with saffron cream & vermouth, portuguese w/ chorizo garlic cilantro & tomato.

                    I don't think the provenance of the mussels matters nearly as much as the freshness.

                    1. re: Frodnesor

                      The best mussels are from Penn Cove in Washington State. You don't see them much here, but they are much better than what you get on the east coast. As for Miami, I like Joe Allen, Le Bon and Michael's versions.

                    2. re: billjac

                      i liked the mussels at Cafe Pastis

                      1. re: billjac

                        The idea that generic mussel dish X would be dramatically less expensive than PEI mussel dish X seems a bit bizarre to me. Far as I know you can't really find any seafood (or much other food) that's any cheaper than mussels - PEI included. What are they, about $2 a pound retail? This is one reason they've shown up in restaurants everywhere in the past 5 yrs or so. For a while they were they great undiscovered, delicous and ultra-cheap seafood.

                      2. re: Blind Mind

                        Had some very good/fresh mussels at Le Bouchon du Grove recently

                      3. re: Nick

                        Not only are mussles less expensive to buy and make at home but I have to say Publix had some fantastic ones recently. That's been my problem with ordering mussles in restaurants; they are all-too-often the large, spongy variety rather than the small, Mediterranean-style ones. Publix had these lovely small ones. I steam them in coconut milk with basil and red Thai curry paste.

                    3. Plumpest, tastiest mussels I ever had were in Maison D'Azur in the beach. Traditional moules et Frites

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: Icantread

                        The mussels at the View Bar at the Regent Bal Harbour are superb......

                        1. re: dlgc

                          Sardinia's med mussles are easily the best I ever had. They are a special that is not served often...

                      2. I had a great COZZE IN BIANCO - Mussels steamed in white wine, basil, lemon butter and Pernod for $11. At Carrabbas, 39th & Collins.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: 2top

                          I do love this dish from this "chain" restaurant - and everyone I introduce it loves it too. I make it at home a lot - just google "Carrabbas mussel recipe" and you'll find plenty of copycat recipes.

                        2. The mussels in green curry sauce at Stir Crazy in pembroke pines are great. I've had them several times now and just love em...