Food & Drink

Miami’s 14 Most Romantic Restaurants

Published On 02/03/2015 Published On 02/03/2015
George Apostolidis

Because picking the wrong restaurant could get you the wrong kind of screwed on date night, and because Valentine's Day is only weeks away, we've assembled a list of the 14 most romantic restaurants in Miami, including strip clubs (just kidding!); it includes traditional white-table-clothed destinations, sweet waterside spots, and everything else in between...

Chef Adrianne’s Vineyard Restaurant and Wine Bar

Chef Adrianne’s Vineyard Restaurant & Wine Bar

Kendall
Yeah, you have to drive to Kendall, but once you’re inside the dim, all-wood restaurant you’ll be stuck on the pork belly and chocolate-Nutella bread pudding, and because there’s nothing else to do in the area, you'll also be stuck making out in the car like high schoolers after dinner.

Juvia

Juvia

South Beach
Located atop the artistic 1111 Lincoln Rd parking garage, the restaurant has one of the city’s best views in a tropical chic setting, plus it offers small plates that are a mix of French, Peruvian, and Japanese. Besides if you’re still hungry afterwards, there’s a Shake Shack downstairs where you can get something sweet for your sweetie.

Cristina Izquierdo

Romeo’s Cafe

Coral Way
Have a hard-to-please date? Bring her here. There is no menu as Chef Romeo Majano prepares a custom dinner based on your preferences (which you provide upon sitting down) and the day’s available ingredients. While the restaurant’s décor is a bit reminiscent of your parent’s home, the restaurant offers an intimate environment with only 28 seats.

Mandolin Aegean Bistro

Mandolin Aegean Bistro

Design District
A remodeled cottage house, this romantic restaurant is a little bit Greek and little bit Turkish. The vast tree-lined and candlelit outdoor area will transport you to a small town in Greece without the big price tag and trip, 'cause you’re not in that stage of your relationship yet.

Soyka

Soyka

MiMo
When making your reservation at this “American bistro," make sure to ask for outdoor seating. Looking in, that narrow section looks like a restaurant within a restaurant. With Old World chandeliers and lavish greenery separating each table, it’s like that Secret Garden movie your girlfriend’s always going on and on about.

Soya e Pomodoro

Soya e Pomodoro

Downtown Miami
Housed inside the lobby of an old Miami bank (if walls could talk), it’s a trip to Italy complete with romantic lighting, mismatched furniture, Italian servers, and homemade pasta. Did we mention it’s actually run by Italians? Dining is al fresco and spills onto the streets of Downtown Miami.

Red Fish Grill

Red Fish Grill

Cutler Bay
Located waterfront on Matheson Hammock Park, the restaurant is housed in a historic stone building that was once the Matheson Hammock Pavilion; it is also accessible by boat for those who want to access the mostly seafood menu by sea. And... um, own boats, obviously.

Cecconi’s

Cecconi’s

Miami Beach
An outdoor courtyard is lined with lit Silver Buttonwood trees, a green and white tile floor, colorful and comfortable sofas and chairs, and has a retractable roof to save hairstyles from going frizzy. This is every girl’s Pinterest dream come true. Inspired by the original Cipriani restaurant in Italy, the concept is perfected at the Soho Beach House adding a twist of Miami cool.

The Rusty Pelican Restaurant in Miami

Rusty Pelican

Key Biscayne
This old-school boy still has charm and offers the best view of Downtown Miami, plus now that it's undergone an extensive reno a few years back (we know it’s been awhile), the restaurant features less carpet, more wood, and a layout where every seat in the house has a view. Pro-tip: if there’s a wedding going on upstairs, try to sneak in. It'll be a romantic adventure, and if anyone asks, you came with Carlos.

Villa Azur

Villa Azur Restaurant & Lounge

Miami Beach
This place may be known for its crazy Thursday night parties, beautiful women, and sparklers, but it also does good wining and dining by mixing the delicacies of France and Italy. We see you foie gras. Check out the outdoor area, where a Cirque du Soleil-esque clear tent is draped in linens, chandeliers, and more of that Secret Garden greenery.

Mandarin Oriental

La Mar

Brickell
Use Valentine’s Day as an excuse to try one of Miami’s best new restaurants. Chef Gastón Acurio, is best-known for putting Peruvian cuisine on the map, and his restaurant, Astrid y Gastón, has been recognized time and time again as being one of the best in the world. Now his Executive Chef Diego Oka, an Acurio protégé, is executing ceviches, anticuchos, and piqueos at the Mandarin Oriental. Grab a seat outside under the palm trees.  

Pied a Terre Restaurant

Pied à Terre

Miami Beach
The sophisticated and elegant 40-seat restaurant recently premiered a new menu featuring the flavors of Alsace. If things go well during dinner, you can rent a room upstairs at the Cadet Hotel, and there are people at Thrillist who have experienced this place's date-night prowess personally. Need we say more? Let's not and remain decent.

15th & Vine Kitchen and Bar

15th & Vine Kitchen and Bar

Brickell
Perched 15 floors above Biscayne Bay, 15th & Vine boasts commanding views of the Miami skyline, a stunning marble-floored interior (the best table, number 105, even has its own tree), and a menu with a whole section of sharable eats like bacon-wrapped dates and a cassoulet of duck confit, but don't worry, if you're feeling selfish -- you probably shouldn't be, it's a date remember -- there are regular-sized portions too.

The Forge

The Forge

Miami Beach
Open since 1968, this vintage restaurant has reinvented itself more times than Madonna. In 2014, they brought on Michelin-starred chef Christopher Lee and we are still raving about the Jamaican Jerk Bacon and the Chocolate Hazelnut Fondue. Pro-tip: ask for a tour of the ridiculous wine cellar, then confidently order a bottle for dinner. It's the perfect way to... sorryboutthis!... forge an instant connection.

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Previous Venue Next Venue Venue Description
1. 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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2. Juvia 1111 Lincoln Rd, Miami Beach , FL (South Beach)

Bearing the name of the tree that produces Brazil nuts (also what they called Terry Gilliam while he made that film), Juvia's a massive, purple-heavy, "vertical garden"-lined indoor/outdoor joint perched atop the penthouse level of 1111. Their open kitchen's plating Asian tapas like Japanese yellowtail hamachi and truffle oil-coated salmon nashi, plus bigger boys like milk-fed pork confit and Hawaiian blue prawns, in addition to an oyster-/king crab-/lobster-stocked "Cold Bar", or what DiCaprio says when his gf's searching for something around the house, but not really close.

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3. Romeo's Cafe 2257 Coral Way, Coral Gables, FL 33145 (Coral Gables)

There is no menu as Chef Romeo Majano prepares a custom coursed dinner based on your preferences and the day’s available ingredients, which you provide upon sitting down. While the restaurant’s décor is a bit reminiscent of your parent’s home, the restaurant offers an intimate environment with only 28 seats.

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4. Mandolin Aegean Bistro 4312 NE 2nd Ave, Miami, FL 33137 (Design District)

From a Turkish/Greek husband/wife team committed to the simple rustic cuisine their often-contentious people have in common, Mandolin's on the roster of intimate Buena Vista date spots, and looks like a cottage lifted from the Aegean coast.

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5. Soyka's Restaurant 5556 NE 4th Ave, Miami, FL 33137

When making your reservation at this “American bistro”, make sure to ask for outdoor seating. Looking in, that narrow section looks like a restaurant within a restaurant. With Old World chandeliers and lavish greenery separating each table.

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6. Soya E Pomodoro 120 NE 1st St, Miami, FL 33132 (Downtown)

Housed inside the former lobby of an old Miami bank, it’s a trip to Italy complete with romantic lighting, mismatched furniture, Italian servers, and homemade pasta. Did we mention it’s actually run by Italians?

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7. Red Fish Grill 9610 Old Cutler Rd, Coral Gables, FL 33156 (Pinecrest)

Cozily nestled in Matheson Hammock Park, Red Fish Grill is a Miami staple. It’s widely regarded as one of the most romantic dinner spots in the city: palm trees swaying in the breeze, twinkling lights, and striking views of the coastline sunset that only get prettier as you work your way through the well-stocked wine list. The seafood-obsessed menu features brightly flavored favorites like tuna tartare with yuzu-soy vinaigrette and Caribbean bouillabaisse with coconut milk.

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8. Cecconi's 4385 Collins Ave, Miami, FL 33140 (Miami Beach)

With outposts in Cali and London, Cecconi's is known for simple, authentic, Venetian food from Chef Sergio Sigala (see? Authentic!) that's served in a sophisticated dining room and beautiful garden area.

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9. The Rusty Pelican 3201 Rickenbacker Cswy, Key Biscayne, FL 33149 (Key Biscayne)

40yr-old landmark The Rusty Pelican looks like a Key West-beach-house-meets-country-club, with a labyrinth of glassed-in wine bottles separating the dining room from a 200-person indoor/outdoor lounge with low-slung couches, in addition to an expansive upstairs terrace.

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10. Villa Azur Restaurant & Lounge 309 23rd St, Miami Beach , FL 33139 (South Beach)

From a couple nightlife/restaurant veterans and actor Olivier Martinez (aka, the dude who banged Diane Lane in a hallway), comes Villa Azur: a stately-but-relaxing French eatery aiming to capture the "glamour and allure found in the French Riviera" by hiring a ketchup-hating Franco-designer to dress up the sprawling indoor/outdoor space with vintage chandeliers, mod leather couches, and antique wood fixtures.

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11. La Mar by Gaston Acurio 500 Brickell Key Drive, Miami, FL 33131 (Brickell)

Peruvian culinary maestro Gaston Acurio is mixing Andean and Asian flavors into a bold menu that highlights his home country at this chic restaurant inside the Mandarin Oriental. The menu includes made-to-order ceviche; tiraditos, or Peruvian-style sashimi; and causas, a traditional dish of potatoes whipped with seafood, avocado, tobiko, tomato, and egg. The drink selection is equally quintessential Peru, offering various takes on the pisco sour.

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12. Pied à Terre The Cadet Hotel 1701 James Ave, Miami Beach, FL 33139 (Miami Beach)

Nestled in the historic Cadet Hotel, Pied à Terre strikes the balance between sultry and charming, refined yet unpretentious; think cottage-meets-cabana. It’s one of the most romantic restaurants in South Beach, a place to take pretty dates if you’ve got a pretty penny. The menu offers both à la carte and tasting options, and is predominantly French with Mediterranean influences: note the cold terrine of foie gras, centrally placed between crispy Coteaus du Layon and mango-apricot chutney, capturing the tropical zing for which Miami is known. There’s a decorated wine list for those trying to impress with their bottle knowledge, but don’t fret if you’re intimated: the sommelier will be happy to assist.

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13. 15th & Vine Kitchen and Bar 485 Brickell Ave, Miami, FL 33131 (Brickell)

This contemporary hotel restaurant and lounge has gorgeous views and serves classic America food with a Latin flare.

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14. The Forge Restaurant & Wine Bar 432 W 41st St, Miami Beach, FL 33140 (Miami Beach)

If you think New American food tastes best when consumed in a space with all the opulence of Jay Gatsby’s mansion-meets a medieval library-meets a Tim Burton-themed wedding a la Martha Stewart, well -- you should probably try to grab a highly coveted reservation at the Forge. Regulars rave over gussied up comfort food like the black truffle macaroni and cheese pot pie, decadently tempting enough that you’ll likely ignore the server’s advice to “let it cool.” Fortunately, the cavernous wine cellar – one of the largest in Miami – features enough chilled wines to offer a cooling respite.

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