Chain's in south miami
For south miami residents, what do you think of the opening of carabas and outback in the new parking garage. I use to love the fact that almost all restaurants were small family owned, there are some great restaurants like origin,alta cocina , cafe pastis and many more in which you will always see the owners there taking care of you,
I think its sad how corporate dining is overtaking the small true good restaurants.
I see the complex as a net-positive. Don't hurl rocks at me. I can't recall what used to be in that space, but the addition of the parking garage above is welcome. The Outback will have a tough time there, since every other Outback in the area is in a free parking lot. I'll defend Carrabba's, though. I've never had a bad meal in a Carrabba's (in other cities, I've been to the South Miami one just once), and I'm glad to see it there as there isn't a Carrabba's anywhere near that one.
I will always throw my support to the local mom and pops, but I'm not going to thumb my nose at a chain just because it's a chain. One of the longest standing eateries there -- Swenson's -- is a chain, of course (and it's obviously not a good one). Beverly Hills Cafe is another chain that has lasted for ages there.
Are folks generally upset that within the past year, Panera and Chipotle opened within walking distance of the new Out-abba/Carabback? I think Chipotle is an improvement to the Schlotzsky's-Krispy Kremes in that space. I like the Whole Foods there over just more commercial real estate.
That said, I'm also glad to see Alta Cocina, Poblano's, Bacchus, and the new Irish place open up. I think we're getting a fair balance of chains and indies.
It was inevitable when South Miami developed into a nightlife destination for those living in South Dade and not wanting to go all the way to the beach for entertainment.
My partner and I will always seek out those smaller venues not by choice, but just as you said having the owner being within eye and ear of your dining is comforting to know. I also think that there is a majority of Miami that would rather falling off the plate portions of a "Cheesecake Factory" or "TGI Fridays" before a smaller less known venue. I saw a poll where people wanted portion over quality. Was it a survey of South Florida or a national poll? Not sure, but locals to me go for size over substance. I may get in trouble for saying it, but it is not far from the truth.
I grew up in south miami, when what is now the CVS, was Sunset Drugs where you went for great milk shakes and waitresses knew your name. Or Marshall Majors where Jake's is now.
I am completely unhappy with having two chain restaurants in south miami, especially such crappy ones! I would prefer a terrible meal at a Mom and Pop restaurant before I had a great meal at a chain. My vote is we keep supporting the mom and pop places and not the corporate chains!