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Dinner on Lincoln Road

SarahChef May 5, 2009 03:08 PM

My husband and I have a toddler, so a date night is rare. He wants to go to a movie and dinner on lincoln road and I never been thrilled with our choices. Does anyone have an recomendations for something either on lincoln road mall or with in walking distance?

  1. s
    SarahChef May 7, 2009 04:40 PM

    I was excited to see such a heated discussion about my post. My husband has requested Joe Allens, so I think we are going there, but my hope is that he will change his mind and we can go to Sardinia (I have heard good things). All we want is a good meal, with good service without breaking the bank. Is that too much to ask for in this day and age?? :)

    7 Replies
    1. re: SarahChef
      tpigeon May 7, 2009 05:02 PM

      They are not on lincoln road. Joe Allens is solid -- my favorites are the burgers -- they do them especially well there. Sardinia is somewhere between very good and excellent. There are multiple successful menu strategies at sardinia.

      1. re: SarahChef
        Blind Mind May 7, 2009 08:35 PM

        Pretty funny that after all of that you are choosing between 2 that arent on Lincoln Rd hahaha.

        tp - please do not put me in the bucket of recommending Nexxt. I would eat Starbucks for dinner before I ate there. There's a reason they didnt get sued successfully by CF. Its hard to patent "chicken egg rolls" or "pork dumplings"... Boring, bland menu for the masses and not chow-worthy at all.

        Since places within a relative proximity to the movie theater are being thrown around, Id second Ice Box Cafe and I cant believe I didnt mention Cafe Books & Books. Both have ever-changing menus/specials and great food. The one downfall I have found at B&B is that the wait for the food to come to the table can sometimes take forever. Sardinia is also an excellent choice and better than the 2 I just mentioned but also comes with a heftier price tag.

        1. re: Blind Mind
          jessierandall May 7, 2009 08:45 PM

          I really, really want to like Alta Mar but have had nothing but disappointing and expensive experiences there. I'm unclear about what others are ordering that's so good and so well-priced comparatively.

        2. re: SarahChef
          lax2mia May 8, 2009 06:37 AM

          Great choices. Perfect meal would be drinks at Joe Allen's bar, meal at Sardinia, dessert back at Joe Allen's (not just any dessert though- forget the rest of the desserts on the menu and get the date pudding with vanilla ice cream).

          1. re: lax2mia
            tpigeon May 8, 2009 07:48 AM

            Sardinia has some really good desserts too such as the millefoglie, duo di mousse and pana cotta. I would not necessarily go back to JA for dessert...

            1. re: tpigeon
              lax2mia May 8, 2009 08:03 AM

              But they don't have the crack infused date pudding. It's one of my favorite desserts anywhere. I've had the mousses (our moussi, don't know the plural) and the panna cotta, but the desserts at Joe Allen just seem homier. Preference I guess.

              BTW, hadn't been in a while and a return trip last Saturday saw the departure of my favorite orecchiete pasta. It's been replaced with another shape. I miss the ear pasta though. Waiter agreed.

              1. re: lax2mia
                tpigeon May 8, 2009 11:00 AM

                They must have just changed it again, very recently, had the orechiette wild boar pasta 2 weeks ago. You might be able to ask for it btw because they serve the orechette pasta with pesto on the lunch menu...

                As for who has the better desserts, they both do very well here with the date pudding being particularly strong. However, not sure that it is worth the hassle of going one place or the other once you are already eating dinner. You have to get up, wait to be seated, get your order and get the check all over again, a bit of a hassle to me, but then again, I live here.

        3. yomyb May 7, 2009 02:30 PM

          After living in SoBe for years and eating at every spot on Lincoln, we decided the only two places worth giving our money to are Books and Books and Ice Box. I actually miss them now that I moved. I always have respect for Frod's recs but I can NEVER understand his Rosinella recommendation. In my opinion it is horrible. If you are willing to walk a few blocks south, nice and also casual is A La Folie on Espanola Way is always good food and cool atmosphere (yes I know chows, minus the mosquitoes, but you can always sit inside!)

          11 Replies
          1. re: yomyb
            Frodnesor May 7, 2009 03:04 PM

            It has been a while since I've been to Rosinella but I used to like their vitello tonnato, white bean & tuna salad, gnocchi. I've tried not to overstate it - it's not a place I'd ever go out of my way for, but it'll do in a pinch. I'd say the same for Spris/Tiramesu - they don't exactly get me excited but they won't kill you either and the price is reasonable. Obviously everyone's free to disagree.

            1. re: Frodnesor
              tpigeon May 7, 2009 03:16 PM

              I like spris better than tiramisu. I like piola too. David's is not bad if you are counting ice box you should count davids in too as they are the same distance off lincoln. Miss yip is ok too.

              1. re: tpigeon
                Alyson777 May 7, 2009 03:31 PM

                I have only picked up from Miss Yip but if you like Chinese Food/ Dim sum
                the Dim sum is pretty good. The decor is really cute! The shrimp dumplings are amazing and the soup dumplings are done just right. i ordered the chicken in lettuce wraps and I thought they were the best I ever had. I also tried the chili and sea bass with black bean sauce. It's no Phillipe Chow but its pretty good.

                Btw if you are willing to spend around $120/ couple for a really good dinner I just went to Phillipe Chow in the new Gansvoort hotel. We were 4 people and we ate extremely well we each ordered a dish and had a drink and dessert and the bill was $200 plus tax and tip...The food was spectacular. I highly recommend the Jade dumplings. I never had green Dumplings before but these were shrimp dumplings with green wonton. The chili and Sea bass $60 is really for 4 but it says for two. The portions are very large so if you share it's not too costly. I also thought the dry long spareribs were truly amazing!! I am not in Miami all year round and I try and go to as many restaurants as I can while I am there. This was a real treat!
                Prices are on the website!!

                1. re: Alyson777
                  lax2mia May 7, 2009 04:27 PM

                  Are you sure it's not "Chilean Seabass" instead of "chili and sea bass"? If so, it's endangered and you shouldn't be eating it anyway. Think Miss Yip is overpriced for what you get. Love Piola. Rosinella just seems like a basic good Italian for me. I'm not a huge red sauce fan and theirs is very light.

                  Oh and there's an A la Folie on Purdy now sans mosquitoes and with a view of the park and bay.

                  1. re: lax2mia
                    Icantread May 7, 2009 04:52 PM

                    To be fair to Miss Yip, it's one of the more inexpensive options on the beach and one of the better budget chinese that I've found. I'd love to hear alternative recs as I'm rarely satisfied with that level of Chinese

                    1. re: Icantread
                      rare_g May 7, 2009 10:41 PM

                      miss yips is weak sauce. okay at best. but waaaaaay overpriced for what you get. one time i got take out from there, they had the nerve of trying to charge gratuity. my experience, thus far, with chinese in miami is thumbs down.

                      its not on lincoln but i would go to joe allens. reasonable prices and decent food and atmosphere. lincoln is beat.

                    2. re: lax2mia
                      tpigeon May 7, 2009 04:59 PM

                      That's the a la folie you will see me at :)

                    3. re: Alyson777
                      Frodnesor May 7, 2009 09:06 PM

                      I have found the (very limited selection of) dim sum at Miss Yip (and the rest of the food) thoroughly mediocre despite multiple attempts.

                      1. re: Alyson777
                        viscalbarsa May 11, 2009 06:37 PM

                        I have eaten twice at each of Miss Yip and Philippe's, and, while my oriental wife will eat, and even praise, anything that comes with a bowl of rice, I have to say that none of these four meals will make it to my top 20,000. I go to China twice a year and I am hopelessly spoiled for hyphenated Chinese food.

                        Why is nobody recommending Quattro, and there are even posters advising to keep away? I can't think of another place with as consistently good food in or around Lincoln Road, or, for that matter, anywhere in Miami Beach. The original post talks about "date night". I assume they can splurge a little, Quattro CAN be expensive, but there is nothing quite like their whole branzino al sale, their polenta al tartuffo bianco, in season, and their rotating regional specialties. What's not to like? The service can be diffident, and the wine list is puzzling; but the food, I always find to be great...

                        1. re: viscalbarsa
                          tpigeon May 12, 2009 04:02 AM

                          Because you are so wrong about quattro. That's why.

                  2. re: yomyb
                    tpigeon May 7, 2009 03:14 PM

                    Mosquitos are inside too :)

                  3. a
                    almostinamerica May 7, 2009 12:17 PM

                    I think for a date, Nexxt is too big and busy. I would recommend the simple Books & Books or Ice Box, both of which are *really good* - and Ice Box has those great desserts! These two places are more low-key and are where I would take a date over Nexxt and Sushi Samba. Pizza Rustica is a counter-service place, not table service, so if you're finally getting a night off, at least give yourself the luxury of table service!

                    1. Alyson777 May 7, 2009 06:48 AM

                      I like Cafe Nexxt on Lincoln Road. Nexxt is located at 700 Lincoln Road in Miami Beach FL, 33139. Nearby restaurants include: Sushi Samba, El Rancho Grande, and Pizza Rustica.
                      I also agree that DORAKU is pretty decent and well priced for sushi. Sushi Samba is great but more expensive.
                      For a moderately priced dinner before a movie I think CAFE NEXXT has a big menu and the food it very decent.

                      For a nicer restaurant on Lincoln Rd you can try MEAT MARKET. This is relatively new restaurant on Lincoln and I was really impressed with the food.

                      9 Replies
                      1. re: Alyson777
                        Blind Mind May 7, 2009 06:51 AM

                        FWIW, Cafe Nexxt is the exact same thing as the Cheesecake Factory. The owner ripped off the entire menu pretty much and just changed the names of the dishes around. CF actually tried to sue him and lost which I find hilarious. The food is serviceable and fairly cheap, actually better than CF, but I wouldnt choose to go there personally.

                        1. re: Blind Mind
                          Icantread May 7, 2009 06:57 AM

                          They changed the names of the dishes?! I did not even think they did that.

                          1. re: Icantread
                            Alyson777 May 7, 2009 07:02 AM

                            Yeah I know they didn't even change most of the names HAHA... I live in Montreal most of the year and they did the exact same thing. Someone opened up a place called Elixor restaurant and tried to rip off the cheesecake factory menu and the Decor which is a spitting image. CF sued the owners of the Elixor chain and LOST!!!

                            I personally don't love the CF... I do find NEXXT much better,,, I have had the same dishes at both and Nexxt is much better, Although, it depends on which CF... the one in AVENTURA MALL is not very good. I went to one in BOSTON though and it was pretty good.

                            1. re: Alyson777
                              tpigeon May 7, 2009 09:37 AM

                              Can we stop with the nexxt and jerry's recs? No wonder we have a bad rep.

                              1. re: tpigeon
                                Icantread May 7, 2009 09:54 AM

                                chowhound has a bad rep?

                                1. re: tpigeon
                                  Alyson777 May 7, 2009 10:32 AM

                                  If you read the original request she asked where she can grab dinner before a movie she wasn't asking for the finest establishments in South Beach. For an OK regular easy dinner with a lot of options Nexxt is not bad...

                                  Now if she asked for fine dining in South Beach I would have said try Barton G or Joes or China Grill or Tuscan Grill, Philipe Chow, Meat Market, Nobu.. Jerry's is okay for a lunch deli and not spectacular.
                                  For the record this is a forum on people opinions everyone has an opinion that is why they are called opinions.

                                  1. re: Alyson777
                                    tpigeon May 7, 2009 10:53 AM

                                    I have news for you nexxt sucks and Jerrys is an abomination.

                                    Don't get me started on Barton G as fine dining.

                                    1. re: tpigeon
                                      Alyson777 May 7, 2009 11:11 AM

                                      I didn't even suggest Jerry's I think its gross. I think most of the Delis in Miami are dilapidated and not good anymore.
                                      I do however know a lot of people who happen to like Nexxt Cafe for before a movie.
                                      Also I do not think Barton G has the most fabulous food but the presentation is pretty cool for a 1 time experience.
                                      I am curious what you top choices are?

                                    2. re: Alyson777
                                      tpigeon May 7, 2009 03:50 PM

                                      Joes, osteria del teatro, sardinia, prime 112 (not for steaks), talula, Nobu - haven't been in a while would be my choicees

                          2. d
                            dietndesire May 6, 2009 01:32 PM

                            I cannot blame you since the food sucks.
                            Honestly, there is nothing worth recommending.
                            I basically refuse to eat out in Miami but the above mentioned Panizza(didn't know the name) is acceptable for what it is supposed to be for the price. Note, I only would eat the empanadas and small bits, not entrees or the like. I forget exactly everything they serve.
                            Alta Mar, I remember that shocking disappointment all too vividly.
                            Doraku lost quality. Used to be acceptable, now, not so much.
                            The menu looks good? I never understand what that means, really. To a small point, yes, I understand the intent but many menus have the same dishes and completely different outcomes
                            Quattro is awful, no way another venture by that group is any better.
                            Spaghetti con pomodoro
                            Does that look good? It might end being Chef Boyardee or something truly top notch.

                            7 Replies
                            1. re: dietndesire
                              Frodnesor May 6, 2009 03:05 PM

                              If you refuse to eat out in Miami perhaps you're not the ideal person to be making Miami restaurant recommendations. Having said that, Lincoln Road does not exactly demonstrate the high points of Miami dining lately.

                              Meat Market was pricey and far from perfect but had some good points, and has a lively feel to it. If I were in the neighborhood I'd go back and hope it's improved rather than declined. I like the pizza at Piola around the corner from the movie theatre (on Alton Rd.). I am not a fan of Doraku. For simple, casual, serviceable Italian (and a seat outside on Lincoln Road), Rosinella is decent.


                              1. re: Frodnesor
                                Blind Mind May 6, 2009 07:54 PM

                                Im curious, Frod... What turns u off to Doraku? I forgot that Spris has excellent pizza and salads. Super casual and great people watching but a few blocks (Meridian) away from the movies on Lincoln.

                                1. re: Blind Mind
                                  Frodnesor May 6, 2009 09:54 PM

                                  It has been ages since I've tried Doraku, but when I did, I found it mediocre quality for higher than mediocre prices - which may be more a function of location on Lincoln Road than anything else. I didn't think it was actively bad, just never saw much reason to go back.

                                  1. re: Frodnesor
                                    tpigeon May 6, 2009 11:49 PM

                                    I agree

                                    1. re: tpigeon
                                      lax2mia May 7, 2009 06:22 AM

                                      Remember when that space first opened and they had the conveyer belt sushi? You can still see the octopus on the ceiling that they've tried to cover up with fabric. Neither place was very good, but liked the conveyer belt more just because you could get in and out of there fast and cheap.

                                      1. re: lax2mia
                                        Frodnesor May 7, 2009 11:18 AM

                                        I do remember the conveyor belt. I now go to Katana when I want mobile sushi.

                              2. re: dietndesire
                                tpigeon May 6, 2009 11:50 PM

                                Baires is going to open soon. I hear lots of great things about the crepes place by the movie theater.

                              3. lax2mia May 6, 2009 12:04 PM

                                The pizzeria/enoteca owned by the Quattro people should be opening soon and the menu looks really good.


                                1. advisor_Girl May 6, 2009 04:30 AM


                                  Go West - AltaMar (sidewalk seafood @ 1223 Lincoln)

                                  There is a small empanada shop next door called Panizza if the baby needs a cookie...


                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: advisor_Girl
                                    Blind Mind May 6, 2009 11:56 AM

                                    HA! I knew there would be a AG AltaMar plug in here! ;)

                                    Im a fan of Doraku, a sushi bar a couple of shops down from the movie theater. Ive always found the food to be good and well priced.

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