Miyako, oh you handsome little gem of a restaurant. Judging by the fact that this sushi spot only carries 15 reviews to date (now 16) makes me realize that it's nowhere near as popular as it should be. And while I could say something hackneyed like, "it's for the better, that means more for me!," I want more people to know about this spot.
For one, it's some of the best, no frills sushi I've had. The rolls are vast and varied and for dinner, our server suggested the Red Dragon roll (an off the menu option). Shrimp tempura, with a little bit of cream cheese, topped with fresh tuna, a little spicy tobiko, and served with a streak of spicy tuna mayo. Honestly, it's the kind of roll I'll end up craving. Just ask nicely though, as this little roll doesn't come without you specifically requesting it.
The next dream worthy item was the tuna topped spinach nachos. These glazed baby chunks of tuna came perfectly seasoned somewhere between sweet and salty and once paired with the little puffs of chips and supple spinach, oh my god.
Finally, the Thai donuts. Delicately fried and dipped in a little bit of condensed milk. Thank me later.
So, what have we learned? Order the Red Dragon roll, the tuna spinach nachos, and the Thai donuts. Help me make this little strip mall slice of sushi heaven a must on any sushi lover's list.
Peacock Garden Café is exactly what the Grove needed. Take all that's amazing about this neighborhood: the banyan trees, the casual culture, and the occasional summer breeze from the nearby bay. If you ask me, the Grove feels much like the Keys, minus the southernmost point and all.
This afternoon, on a bit of a business lunch, I joined my new afternoon friend in the patio. Amid 90+ degree weather, this would often not be the most natural choice for a lunch setting, but surprisingly, within the garden, my heat index troubles melted away. Chic umbrellas protected us from the sun, nearby trees and plants aided in providing the extra O2, and dare I say I felt a little gust of wind during lunch. Should you feel less adventurous, A/C awaits indoors.
She and I both ordered the mahi mahi fish sandwich. Ever the indulger, it was a little difficult to substitute the fries for a tomato salad and upon arriving, it was even more difficult not to ultimately piece the bun puzzle together, zip it up in sandwich form and subsequently devour. I however, delicately pulled apart my mahi mahi with a fork and dipped it in the accompanying herbaceous tartar sauce. For a carb-less lunch, this filet sent me straight to ocean heaven, or Atlantis as it were.
If you're looking for a picturesque spot in the Grove to enjoy a café meal (where healthy is an option), Peacock Garden is the respite you need to check out.
If you're into NPR, if you're a fan of Ira Glass, if you appreciate modern art, you probably own a record or two, maybe you have a pair of sexy, tortoise-shell rimmed bifocals, you're likely a vegetarian, or a pescatarian, or a person who cooks to classical music, or a fan of the Buena Vista Social Club. You aspire to visit Buenos Aires to learn how to tango, and you may, just maybe, have a carefully curated collection of postcards from the 1940s.
You own a pair of Toms, you support at least one cause firmly, you've been to the Adrienne Arsht Center, you hold tight to your compact disc collection, you still make mix cds for your friends, you dabble in an instrument, you understand chess, you prefer Art Deco to modern high rises, and juuuust maybe, you have fondness for scrawny guys with intellectual sex appeal or waifish, bookish girls with little make up.
Whatever the case, if you subscribe to at least 2 or more of the aforementioned characteristics, it's likely you'll find a thing or two that tickles your oh-so-adorably-pretentious-fancy at Books & Books.
Then again, if you're going to the adjoined café, sit, stay a while, have a latte and order the curried chicken salad.
Recently, I've developed a ravenous appetite for the ceviche and salads (one in particular). The Chopped Celia's Salad combines iceberg & romaine, black bean vinaigrette with tomato, cilantro, jalapeños, avocado, peppers & crispy tortilla with grilled chicken breast. For lunch, this dish titillates tastebuds, demolishes hunger, and leaves leftovers. Match that with my new favorite ceviche in all of Miami (Ceviche Oriental featuring tuna, ginger, soy, jalapeños, shallots, cilantro, lime, grapeseed oil, avocado, cucumber & sesame seeds), and you've got yourself a fine (and shareable) almuerzo.
With all the dining out I do, it's rare to be stunned, floored, and altogether speechless over a meal. This, however, was my reaction 2 nights ago at BLT Steak.
On any given night, you're likely to find a menu filled with all sorts of proteins, but during the month of October, BLT has something different in mind: Any diner ordering BLT Steak's Daily Black Board Menu, which includes an appetizer, main, side dish and dessert, will receive two complimentary glasses of wine, specially selected to accompany the appetizer and entrée courses.
And paying homage to National Seafood Month, the October Black Board menu is set to feature Miami's freshest catches!
In previewing the menu, I found myself diving into a marriage of otherworldly flavors, seemingly brought together with some version of effortlessness by Chef Samuel Gorenstein. This Colombian born, Miami raised youngster is really set to take center stage, and I wouldn't be surprised if his creations led him to Iron Chef status or James Beard recognition.
As I'm eating the delicate and heavenly local yellow jack crudo, topped with thin radish slices, caramelized oranges and key lime dressing, I'm visibly impressed with the chef's poise and inventive approach to the culinary arts.
The local triggerfish ceviche, chunky and tender clouds of delight topped with cilantro, serrano pepper slices, and citrus, proved to be a can't miss dish.
For the hot entrees, the show-stopping array of salt crusted baked local hog snapper, pan roasted local mutton snapper and crispy local margate snapper "Cantonese" style, was absolutely divine. I recommend the crispy snapper if you're torn.
Attention to detail didn't stop at the sides either. The hen of the wood mushrooms, crispy and tender asparagus, zippy green beans, and the throw-your-head-back-and-close-your-eyes jalapeno mash potatoes were just that.
This was wholeheartedly an epicurean's utopia, but it was accessible too. Often, you'll find these dining experiences to be overly decorative, and throw in some cleverly dolloped sauces, the plates look more like an art project. Here, during October, the seafood is stellar. The best in Miami even, and Chef Gorenstein is committed to procuring only the freshest and finest catches from the fisherman he knows best.
As for the wine, my favorites were the Italian Vermentino from Liguria and the Austrian Riesling from Kamptal.
Go with the Yellowtail when it's available. Whether filleted and grilled or served whole, this is the best piece of fish on the menu (or special's board). Upstairs it feels like you're in Havana, think: slowly rotating fans, extensive bar packed with every rum, checkers all over a la 1940s. It's actually quite posh and opposite the downstairs dining scene. You'll likely want to have dinner up here.
Great for an adventurous date.
Truluck's wants to invite you in, serenade you with contemporary piano-playing sing-songiness, intoxicate you with a high class happy hour, and woo you with effortlessly courteous service. As far as white tablecloth fish houses are concerned, I can't think of a better executed restaurant than Truluck's.
Joining in on the Brickell action, this eatery boasts all the familiar touchings you'd find at an upscale steakhouse. My mom and I split the Miso-Glazed Seabass served with Parmesan mashed potatoes and a caesar salad. Top notch quality with a generous, albeit expected, price tag. When our server gave us a business card and a follow up call to gauge our experience (by another staff member) ensued the next day, I could tell Truluck's is putting a premium on customer service.
Highly recommended for happy hour and bar bites or a fancy seafood feast among those you're looking to impress.
On nights when I'm looking for a no frills, downhome sushi experience (and Doraku feels too schmancy), I opt for the Washington Ave, Maiko. This satisfying sushi spot hits all the right notes when it comes to those craveable rolls. From the traditional sashimi to the Americanized funny named roll creations, there's a veritable ocean of options here.
All the South Beach locals know this spot to be one of the more authentic locales and say you're in the mood for Korean food, they cater to those Seoulful seekers as well.
Essensia just gets it. The idea of slow food, the farm to table approach, the focus on seasonal ingredients and the essence of community, yep, it's all here. The food is uncomplicated and fantastically done. After getting a chance to chat with Chef Julie, it comes as no surprise. Personably open, genuinely warm and approachably insightful, this San Diego transplant brings a whole new arsenal of experience to the table.
The restaurant's layout is as diverse as the menu. Inside, it's a small but swanky dining room with a separate lounge and bar scene. Then outdoors under the awning, casually stylish diners file into breezy tables and on temperate nights, there's even a hidden and enclosed garden area where you're surrounded by greenery and the sky above.
I tasted nearly all the delights off the tasting menu for two and while everything had our table mmm-ing and ahh-ing, the local burrata and local heirloom tomato caprese really piqued everyone's palate. Done with some charred corn and crispy prosciutto, this simple salad was really the best caprese rendition I've ever had.
Then the braised black cod in Kombu miso broth nailed it too. Offered with soba noodles and stir fry veggies (hailing from local farms, of course), this delectable Asian twist really highlighted the menu's breadth.
On the meat side, I loved the short rib. Topped off with fig ancho chile chocolate demi glaze (say that fast and say it proud), and served with celery root + leek puree (we thought these were light mashed potatoes!), it was perfect.
If you're a rack of lamb lover, you're in great hands too.
From the giant herb garden in the back (that anyone is welcome to appreciate) to the locally sourced meat and produce, Essensia operates like so few restaurants in South Florida. I urge any fan of food to make a trip to this underrated and overlooked backyard darling.
You know you've discovered a favorite restaurant when you've ordered delivery 3 times in one week. Or conversely, you know the search for seriously fresh seafood has ended when your friend sends you photos of their daily catches whole.
What makes this place so dang perfect? Chef Sam Gorenstein and also his access to Miami's finest seafarers. I was first introduced to the young, Colombian chef's talent at BLT during a seafood dinner and he crushed it. Then, to hear he'd gone from a pricey establishment to his own casual creation piqued my palate and wallet.
The yellowtail tuna burrito is unapologetically delicious. Rolled with some fresh corn, baby tomatoes, sticky jasmine rice and a side of creamy sauce, you may never find a more craveable jumbo roll.
Care for stone crabs? They've got those too in all sizes. I'm not the biggest fan of ceviche, but theirs is something serious and I highly recommend the Asian marinade. And while I didn't try the grilled fish taco for myself, my buddy affirmed it was edible goldschläger - in the best way possible.
The only thing better than the homemade guacamole is one day meeting the man behind the metaphorical tall chef hat.
On Sundays during the Lincoln Road farmer's market, you need to plan a stop by the most adorable booth run by an affable Peruvian lady-duo, Alejandra Cruzado and Vilma Montoya. Sweet, generous and oozing all the affection that your own grandmother might offer, the ladies share complimentary samples of their homemade guacamole, ceviche, salsa and Peruvian juice. If you're after a sweet and refreshing beverage, don't miss the dulcet Mamey or sweetly tart Passion Fruit.
But if you're looking for the perfect pair of afternoon nibbles, the ceviche and guacamole isn't to be overlooked. Not being a huge ceviche fan, I was completely stunned to fall hook, line and sinker for their toothsome creation. They don't stray from the one variety they offer, which, to me, suggests they've spent loads of time perfecting the recipe they've likely prepared for their own families for years and years. The guac is equally flawless. Fresh, zesty, creamy and perfectly seasoned, these ladies really have something going. You can find them positioned in front of the American Apparel at 720 Lincoln.
Anyone who remembers South Miami's Trattoria Sole (before it was sold) knows it was -the- place to enjoy a casually upscale Italian meal. The fish was always on-point and the pasta dishes were equally toothsome. Then, the original owner sold the bistro and moved back to Italy.
Years later, the man who put Trattoria Sole on the map has returned and opened Strada in the Grove - a new local favorite of mine. Really great restaurants don't crop up in the Grove too often - the last noteworthy opening I can recall is Lokal - so when Strada joined the mix with its contemporary Italian kitchen and rustic design, I was giddy. Grey walls, steel touches, and hints of wood are all elements I love. The fact that they're seamlessly incorporated into the aesthetic of Strada makes me happy. Plus, it's always nice and busy which helps the general upbeatness of the place.
The wine menu is fantastic and the dishes have been great. Call me classic, but I always enjoy the Rigatoni al Ragu (chunky meat and tomatoes with fettucini pasta). The butterfly yellowtail snapper is another go-to. If you're a seafood and/or pasta fan, this nouveau Italian eatery will do you right.
Oyster bars are my favorite restaurant type. The fresh smell of the sea (somehow bottled up and delivered within 4 walls), the sight of the shucker prying open rugged bivalves, and the crisp glass of white wine to marry the flavors. Mignonette wins entirely and makes my top 5 restaurants in Miami list.
If you're looking for more neutral oysters, I highly recommend the northeast variety. That or you can always ask the shucker for his recs (which in my case happened to be the Chef himself).
The Lobster Deviled Eggs are a must, the whole fish daily catch (snapper when we went) came out perfectly pan roasted and with a side of thick, homemade Old Bay potato chips, and the broccolini we added as a side hit the spot with a light vinaigrette that flavored the dish.
To finish us off, the berry pie with a spot of vanilla ice cream was unreal. Chunky berry bits filled the inside of this warm and large slice; it's the kind of pie to make a place famous. Come for the seafood, stay for the pie ;)
The menu was so extensive and filled with everything you could hope for. Next visit will include: clams casino, mussels, crab cakes, more crudo (so good and light).
For lunch or dinner, you can't go wrong here.
"Drinky Crow strikes again"
São Paulo - SP, BrasilienYelper seit
Februar 2009Dinge, die ich mag
eating, snowboarding, dogs, capricorns, moving around, RuPaul, saying yes, buying luggage and travel accessoriesHier bin ich häufig anzutreffen
a fishing boat, a dog park, a good pair of sunglasses, and an airport near you.Heimatort
Miami, FLMein Blog oder meine Website Wenn ich nicht gerade yelpe, dann ...
I'm running around - often with my dog!Warum du meine Beiträge unbedingt lesen solltest
I come from a family of chefs and I know how to YelpMeine zweitliebste Website Mein erstes Konzerterlebnis
Celine Dion and Michael Bolton together for one special night (seriously)Mein Lieblingsfilm
Singles, Lost in TranslationMeine Henkersmahlzeit
french fries, choripan, paella, my dad's cooking and a banana milkshakeErzähl's nicht weiter, aber...
I love ABBAMeine neueste Entdeckung
chapulines pizzaIch schwärme gerade für