Food & Drink

Miami's 17 Most Important Restaurants

Published On 05/26/2015 Published On 05/26/2015
Michael's Genuine Food & Drink
Pubbelly Miami Beach
Yardbird Southern Table & Bar
My Ceviche
Chef Adrianne
The Federal
Joe's Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab
Azul at Mandarin Oriental, Miami
Pincho Factory
EATING HOUSE MIAMI
Blue Collar Restaurant
RED
Prime 112
El Mago de las Fritas
Versailles
Ortanique on the Mile
Basil Park
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1. Michael's Genuine 130 NE 40th St, Miami, FL 33137 (Design District)

Take advantage of MG's brunch and order the kimchi Benedict or lemon ricotta pancakes. You can also head to their happy hour to get loose on craft beers, specialty ‘tails and snacks, or dive in to a full sit-down meal like the pan-roasted 1/2 "Poulet Rouge" chicken with roasted vegetables or the short rib and fontina cheese panini.

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2. Pubbelly 1418 20th St, Miami Beach, FL 33139 (South Beach)

Pubbelly's an Asian-inspired gastropub that (you guessed it!) combines Asian food, Western eats and beer. It hails from three better-known vets: Casa Tua, Nobu, and Sushi Samba.

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3. Yardbird Southern Table & Bar 1600 Lenox Ave, Miami Beach, FL 33139 (Miami Beach)

Before Yardbird opened in 2011, Miami wasn't known for its Southern comfort cuisine, which somehow seemed odd for a city that's geographically part of the American south. All that changed when Top Chef finalist Jeff McInnis, along with restaurant vets Chris Romero and John Kunkel, opened Yardbird in Miami Beach and instantly made a name with their fried chicken, buttermilk biscuits, and watermelon salad. The menu is chock full of quintessential down-home foods, and the well-stocked bar doles out house cocktails like blackberry bourbon lemonade and Bloody Marys with bacon-infused bourbon.

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4. My Ceviche 235 Washington Ave, Miami Beach, FL 33139 (South Beach)

Raw fish is the name of the game at My Ceviche, a Miami favorite serving up ceviche bowls, burritos, burrito bowls, tacos, salads, and sides that highlight fresh-from-the-ocean seafood. If it’s poke you’re looking for, it has that too, in options like wasabi sesame and ponzu shoyu. This fast-casual spot is a hit around lunchtime, so though you should prepare for a bit of a wait, remember that charred, fresh, briny goodness awaits you on the other side.

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5. Chef Adrianne's Vineyard Restaurant and Wine Bar 11510 SW 147th Ave, Miami, FL 33196 (Kendall)

Chef Adrianne's Vineyard Restaurant in Kendall is, point blank, a nice suburban restaurant. It's not a de facto steakhouse, but it does serve a solid selection of black Angus beef and New Zealand lamb racks. The menu sticks to high-class standard American dishes, like an iceberg chop salad and salmon cooked three ways. The spot is dark and almost sultry with white tablecloths and wine bottles stacked behind the bar.

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6. The Federal Food Drink & Provisions 5132 Biscayne Blvd, Miami, FL 33137

The Phuc Yea! crew's homey spot on Biscayne is serving comfort food that you can wash down with 15 wines, beers on tap, and cocktails... just not all at once. Their light, fluffy biscuits have been ranked as some of the best in the country and are just a little sweet with a honey apple cider glaze. This modern American tavern serves up lunch, dinner and boozy brunch, and their Bloody Mary, made with Southwestern-style chipotle, cilantro, horseradish and agave wine, is not one to miss.

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7. Joe's Stone Crab 11 Washington Ave, Miami Beach, FL 33139 (Miami Beach)

You know about Joe’s Stone Crab, everyone does, Miami-based or not. Joe’s is a South Beach institution, and for over a century has been one of the city’s most famous restaurants. The old-school, art deco space is full of servers in tuxedos and stone crab claws that somehow taste sweeter here than anywhere else in the city. All sorts of other seafood dishes, as well as steaks, fried chicken, and standard steakhouse sides (if you don't get the Lyonnaise potatoes, you're making a huge mistake) make up the all-star menu that draws crowds, celebrities included, to its dining room on Washington Avenue. And what would a Miami Beach mainstay be without key lime pie? Joe’s knows, and it does it the best.

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8. Azul 500 Brickell Key Dr, Miami, FL 33131 (Brickell)

Don't pre-judge Azul, inside Mandarin Oriental, as just another overly priced, elaborate hotel restaurant. Because it's not. The menu boasts a range of Asian fusion dishes, like yellowfin tuna carpaccio and hibiscus-glazed short rib, available à la carte or part of a multi-course tasting menu. Then of course, there's the waterfront ambience: the restaurant has floor-to-ceiling windows with views of Biscayne Bay.

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9. Pincho Factory 9860 SW 40th St, Miami, FL 33165 (South Miami)

Pincho Factory specializes in two things: burgers and kebabs, but it's the burger that catapulted the fast-casual resto to must-try status. Owner Nedal Ahmad's signature Toston burger, topped with jack cheese, lettuce, tomato, and homemade cilantro sauce then sandwiched between two fried plantains, won the annual South Beach Burger Bash in 2015. Since then, Pincho Factory has made a mark with its menu of greasy and good street food, which includes customizable kebab wraps, rice bowls, and salads.

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10. Eating House 804 Ponce De Leon Blvd, Miami, FL 33134 (Coral Gables)

Eating House isn't a regular restaurant, it's a cool restaurant. Chef Giorgio Rapicavoli's spot began as a pop-up in 2012 before it took a permanent, brick-and-mortar turn in Coral Gables a few years later. It's hard to decide what Rapicavoli does better: local ingredient-driven dinner or over-the-top brunch. Whatever it is, all the dishes coming out of the kitchen -- like Cap'n Crunch pancakes or black truffle carbonara -- are similar in their sheer creativity.

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11. Blue Collar Restaurant 6730 Biscayne Blvd, Miami, FL 33138

Blue Collar's mission is to give off a true neighborhood hang-out vibe, which it successfully does with a huge menu of comfort food staples. Every day, the kitchen serves a different rib dish (baby back, short ribs, spare ribs, etc), parmesan dish (chicken, veal, pork, eggplant, etc), and a braised dish (brisket, pot roast, ox tails, pork shoulder). There's a whole chalkboard of vegetable sides to counter the meaty entrées, and appetizers like definitely-order-or-you'll-regret-it potato latkes. Don't even get us started on brunch -- just make sure you get there early.

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12. Red, The Steakhouse 119 Washington Ave, Miami Beach, FL 33139 (South Beach)

Once voted Sexiest Steakhouse of the Year (by Playboy, no less) and beloved by A-listers, Red delivers on all the swanky fronts. But we suggest you let the food -- from appetizers like seared foie gras and caviar with crème fraiche to the steak and seafood entrées -- do the talking. Throw in a fully-loaded wine list, and the fact that Red is one of the few places in the country to use Miyazaki beef (like Kobe but more marbled), and you've got a steak night to remember.

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13. Prime 112 112 Ocean Drive, Miami Beach, FL 33139 (Miami Beach)

Located in the historic Browns Hotel, this chef-driven boutique steakhouse offers an innovative menu in a high-energy, sophisticated environment. There’s no better place in Miami to people-watch as celebrities chow down on dry-aged steaks and truffle-sprinkled sides, but you may have to do it for a while, as Prime 112 in SoFi promises notoriously long waits.

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14. El Mago de las Fritas 5828 SW 8th St, Miami, FL 33144 (West Miami)

El Mago de Las Fritas, or the Fritas Magician, celebrates the Cuban hamburger tradition of topping a seasoned ground beef patty with onions and a pile of tiny, wispy shoestring fries. Luckily, El Mago doesn't limit its Cuban touch to hamburgers, and extra-long hot dogs and egg sandwiches are similarly available with a topping of thin and crispy potato sticks. Sweet and savory specials like freshly fried chicharrones and flan are also worth ordering in the laid-back, diner space.

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15. Versailles Restaurant 3555 SW 8th St, Miami, FL 33135

This landmark Cuban restaurant on Calle Ocho serves up the best Cuban coffee in Miami, and it’s the perfect spot to bring out-of-towners when they’re in for a visit to show off the city’s Cuban culture. Here, you can get a heaping plate of ropa vieja for less than you’d pay for a drink in most of Miami, while listening to locals talk politics over cafecitos and tourists diving into plates of grilled meats with black beans, rice, and sweet plantains.

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16. Ortanique on the Mile 278 Miracle Mile, Coral Gables, FL 33134 (Coral Gables)

No place does tropical quite this Coral Gables spot. Yes, the menu’s packed with fresh seafood and more ways to use mangoes and pineapples than you ever thought possible, but it's also got a Certified Angus filet that could go toe to toe with any steakhouse cut in the city.

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17. Basil Park 17608 Collins Ave, Sunny Isles, FL 33280

Not that we’d EVER encourage healthy eating (hello, Fat Kid Friday), but if you ever feel the need to take a break from cheese- and bacon-covered everything, your new go-to spot is this Sunny Isles eatery. Here, the heavily-vegetarian menu is highlighted with food grown on chef Tim Andriola’s mini-farms in Broward. Meats are all free range, grazed and hormone free, and many condiments and sauces are made in-house with no processed or refined ingredients.

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