10 College Buddies want good eats
Ten guys coming in Sept 20th weekend. Have Friday and Saturday nights available for dinners. Any recs for a big group of loud 42 year old guys? Thinking a steak house one night and maybe something more foodie for the second night. Any help would be appreciated.
Thank you for all your suggestions. I returned from a wonderful stay at the Fontainebleu. We ended up going to Doraku Sushi the first night. It had a hip scene and the food was slightly above average. All in all is filled a need for our first night. Lunch the next day, we wanted Cuban food so we ended up at Puerto Segua. It’s a little hole-in-the-wall place right on the main strip. I thought the food was well prepared, but most of the guys felt that everything was a little bland. They do give you nice sauces on the table to make up for it. Again, it filled a need and was slightly above average. Dinner that night, we had what I thought was the best meal of the weekend at Scarpetta. I had the Miami Spice menu and the steak carpaccio was to die for. I tasted the tuna carpaccio and it was excellent too. My entree, I had a fish, which was fine, but not memorable and some of the spaghetti and basil which was very good. The dessert, which I can’t remember was excellent. But the thing that stood out the most was the outstanding service of San Carlo (I think that what his name was). He handled an 11-top of demanded guys effortlessly. The next day, we had the dim sum at Hakkasan, which was a steal at $23. Pretty funny that my friend’s hot and sour soup was $7 less and was tiny. The dumplings were amazing. Most of the dishes were good and the portion was just right. The final night, we ended up a Prime One Twelve. Everyone loved this meal, but I thought it was just ok. The service was professional. The seafood tower appetizer is such a ripoff, especially because we added two of the poke tunas which were $55 each for a small bowl. I had the grass fed strip steak which was good, but I’ve had better strip steaks shot up with the corn. I guess it’s a little hard to compare because they are different. All in all, I thought the dining scene in Miami was very good. It beat my last three trips to Boston, Philadelphia and Las Vegas, but still not as good as my hometown of NOLA.
Dutch is a really good call - good atmosphere - upscale but still casual, great food, and an excellent steak - the ribeye for 2 is indeed one of the best steaks in Miami. I favor Hakkasan in the Fontainebleau for their dim sum at lunch, but it's got a sort of nightclub-y vibe at night that the guys may like.
Or you could do PB Steak for your steakhouse night, which also has broader and more adventurous options than your average steakhouse.
Bazaar is a really good time, great place and excellent food, though the food might be too fussy for some guy crowds.
TP has the South Beach recommendations locked down.
Right in your hotel are 2 great restaurants that are very expensive though. Scarpetta and Hakkasan. Since you are all staying at the Fountainbleu, I am assuming you are not so cost conscious.
You might also consider the following in no particular order:
Milos - very expensive
Macchialina - small place but has a table that can fit you gets loud when crowded so you will be fine.
Barceloneta - I would do bazaar first but it is still an option
Thanks guys, great recs. I think we have a varying degree of cost-consciousness. Definitely one great meal, though. Is Prime 112 worth the money or should we go with Gotham Steak or Scarpetta for their specials? Also, can you recommend a less expensive, maybe Cuban dinner that would be fun and festive.
You are in Miami at the right time: until 9/30 Miami Spice has great prix-fixe options, and in addition to Scarpetta (a must if you are staying at 4441 Collins already), there is also Gotham Steak, both with 3-course dinner for $39, and the lunch at Hakkasan is an even better deal at $23. For more discussion see: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/909164
Just about all of tpigeon's other recommendations are also participating in Spice. For menus and info on them check out ilovemiamispice.com.