Boston Hound, South Bound: Miami?
I'll be vacationing in Miami with friend (me: Boston, she: Toronto) and will be staying at The Betsy for 3 nights. Last trip, CH'ers in Miami gave me some great suggestions (Icebox-- will def go back) for lunch/dinner...And as it's been a few years, I'm hoping for some follow up recommendations.
We probably want to do one 'wowsers' dinner with no price limit-- and then 2 dinners that are more value/bang for the buck...maybe $15/20 per entree. We're open to all cuisines but DC is pregnant-- so maybe not sushi?
Any recommendations that are 'must eats' in the SoBe area? We won't have a car but could cab it for one of the meals...
In your hotel, BLTSteak is an easy pick. Gratis popovers and a liver spread open the meal and there are dishes to satisfy both you and the expectant one..
For the taxi dinner, I'd say Michael's in the Design District or Sardinia on the west side of town. For less money fun, Burger & Beer Joint, Casale or Sosta on Lincoln, and Joe's Stone Crab for LUNCH when crowds will not be an issue (opens Oct 15).
You could also hop up and see the new Fontainebleau renovation and do a pricey meal at Scarpeta (which also serves a nice brunch) or Hakkasan or simply have a drink and a munch at Le Cote poolside. If you haven't been here in a while, that's something "new and improved" as is the Gansevoort (Plunge rooftop lounge) and W Hotel (Wall lounge) on 23rd Street. A number of hounds like Talula across the street so I'll add that they have a fun tapas happy hour and a Sunday brunch as well.
Definitely eat at NAOE fora one of a kind Bento/Sushi masterpiece (not bad at 26 a person) and check out Michael's Genuine Food and Drink for a reasonably priced meal, also eat brunch or lunch at Au Pied du Cochon. For a splurge meal Barton G was DAMN impressive.
I continue to think that the best food on South Beach is at Talula, up Collins on 23rd St. It is far from the most expensive place on the beach but mains will generally run in the $30s. They've added a tapas section to the menu that makes it possible to eat more affordably.
BLT Steak in the Betsy is good for the steakhouse genre. +1 on the popovers and warm chicken liver mousse. They've also started doing a Sunday brunch. Meat Market - another following the steakhouse theme - on Lincoln Road also has some promise though I've only been once, shortly after they opened.
On South Beach I also like Sardinia, and Indomania. The riijstafels at Indomania are $24-28 but it's a huge amount of food and no need to order appetizers, so arguably fits in your $15-20 entree category. Sardinia's sister restaurant, Casale, is at a lower price point and more of a pizza place - I had one good experience there and second visit only so-so.
There is not much on South Beach I'd put in the "must eat" category; nor am I thinking of many great options with $15-20 entrees.
There is a long list of places I would go to for a splurge meal before Barton G - it is a beautiful space and a festive atmosphere but I've found the food to be really mediocre.
In addition to what everyone else has said, if you want to splurge head to Meat Market on Lincoln and get the Japanese A5 Kobe Filet w/ foie ($95+$18 for the foie). Its effing unreal. They also have some decent apps and other mains but I always get the Kobe/foie because its that damn good. The place is usually busy and has a sexy look too. Good times.