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Jan 19, 2009 09:00 AM

Miami Recs for 2 visiting New Yorkers...

Hey Guys,
My wife and I will be visiting Miami for a weekend and we need some food recs. We're looking for foods that we can't get here in NYC. Anything Carribbean or Cuban influenced would be great as would seafood showcasing local ingredients. We are less interested in Italian. We are willing to spend some cash for a great meal but are also willing to travel for great hole-in-the-wall places in any neighborhood.

We will have a car and will be staying in South Beach for the second night. The first night's lodging is still up in the air but we'd like to have some good chow no matter where we end up.

Thanks in advance for your help!


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  1. I would do tap-tap, ortanique, francescos, grazianos -- bird rd location. Tap tap is the worst of the lot I mentioned foodwise...but still good.

    1. For spectacular seafood (and views) I would go to the new Area 31 in the Epic Hotel downtown Miami. Or for a neighborhood gem in South Beach, Alta Mar on the west end of Lincoln Road.

      1. I agree with Alta Mar on Miami Beach. Not glam. but very fresh fish. Joe's Stonecrab is always great too and not just for the crabs. The lobster bisque and the fried oysters are amazing. Try Garcia's on the Miami River. Its a great setting and very down-to-earth. Also, The Oceanaire is good I've heard.

        5 Replies
        1. re: midmit

          Of course Joes...gotta go there at least once. What was I thinking? As far as alta mar goes it is good but I think NY has better seafood places so I would not go there to get a unique miami food experience.

          If you go to joes get the stone crabs - you should eat them with mustard not butter btw. Also the hot alaskan king crab claws are amazing (these should be eaten with butter) and there are not many places you can eat the whole claw...

          1. re: tpigeon

            Hey Jeremy-Don't bother with Joe's-you will be bored out of your mind and blinded by the check. Head over to Little Haiti and eat some goat-easy to get to is B&M Market on NE 79th St, or Bom Bagay on NW 62nd St. Or play it safe with Buena Vista Bistro on NE 2nd Ave for some fresh, friendly, French. These are real Miami places that real locals go to. And A La Folie on Espanola Way for Sunday wake-up crepes. Enjoy your stay.

            1. re: Miami Danny

              Why would he have french of any type when ny does it better?

              1. re: Miami Danny

                I just had a killer pan con lechon today at Enriquetas w/ some better-than-decent tostones (and folks know I don't get all that excited over Cuban food). Tender, unctuous pork, sweet caramelized onions, crispy bread ... ahh. 29th Street and 2nd Ave. Think they close before dinner-time.

                Red Light probably qualifies for some as hole-in-the-wall. Local seasonal ingredients, a little New Orleans influence (great bbq shrimp), usually a couple local fish to choose from. Service can be slow. Biscayne Blvd. and 78th St. More info here ->

                1. re: Frodnesor

                  OP asked for nabe hole-in-the-walls, thus BVB. Enriquetas is great for lunch, but a little isolated for a tourist. If you are really adventurous, try Meche's (not Michy's), which is in the heart of Wynwood for homemade Honduran like baleados. 3104 NW 2nd Ave. Go during daylight only. For photos go to

          2. I ate at Oceanaire in Mary Brickell Village about a week ago. Service was excellent (always a relief in Miami) and everyone was delighted with their fish entrees. The "creamed" corn was really yummy, too, and the huge (and I mean HUGE) slice of key lime pie as well as the brownie with ice cream and whipped cream were both delectable.