Posted Nov. 29, 2015
By ASMAE FAHMY
If America is the melting pot, then Miami Beach’s South Beach provides the stove. Flavors from all over the world meet and mold together to satisfy every visiting palate. From Italian to Mexican, high-end to laid-back, traditional to exotic, these restaurants provide the perfect detour from shopping and swimming and make paradise just a little bit tastier.
Get as close as you can to Sicily in Miami at this mouth-watering pizza wonderland. Every pie comes garnished with (optional) garlic and basil, with generous amounts of cheese melting off the edges. At night, candles light up the dining room and waiters dressed head-to-toe in white serve as the perfect visual contrast to the wooden floors and tables. Crispy, thin crusts harbor tender buffalo mozzarella and fresh tomatoes, which blend together in an aroma as heavenly as a Lotus flower’s. Add the artichoke hearts to your pie for a daring new flavor, or go the more traditional route with fresh mushrooms, hot peppers and shallots. Whatever you do, don’t leave without trying the Nutella pie. Buon appetito.
This lavish, upscale restaurant fosters a romantic environment that is perfect for South Beach honeymooners or anyone looking to add a little spark to their relationship (because what better way to do that than through the stomach?). The restaurant was opened by celebrity chef José Andrés, who makes sure that every dish, even one as simple as an appetizer, is infused with flavor, passion and creativity. There is rarely a hackneyed item on the menu, from the kueh pai ti, a Singapore specialty consisting of shrimp, peanuts and chili sauce, to the Japanese taco, where eel, wasabi and pork chicharrones form the perfect combination for your palate. Do not leave without trying one of the desserts, such as the caramel popcorn and chocolate ganache that are complimented by popcorn ice cream.
Yardbird embraces its Southern roots by offering classic staples such as crispy chicken ‘n’ watermelon ‘n’ waffles and fresh house-baked buttermilk biscuits. The cozy restaurant adds a new touch to a traditional country menu by adding dishes such as fried Everglades’ frog legs served with sweet and sour jelly, bacon bits and escabeche mayo, and chicken liver toast sprinkled with cucumber) and Fresno pepper relish. Not feeling so adventurous? Try the chicken biscuits, macaroni and cheese or cheddar waffles, which are some of Yardbird’s most popular menu items. Plates are a bit on the pricey side, though, so only sample them out if you’re willing to splurge on fine dining.
If Taco Bell’s Doritos tacos have started to lose their flavor, switch up the drive-through experience with a fun, in-house adventure where the atmosphere is just as delicious as the food. Taquiza fosters a laidback ambiance, where a chalkboard menu boasts succulent tacos wrapped in homemade blue masa tortillas, with the corn shipped straight from Mexico. The authentic Mexican dining experience is accentuated by its drinks, with a selection of Mexican beers from which to choose. With their carnitas, pollo, chapulines and rajas, you know you won’t be disappointed.
Red, The Steakhouse
From so rare you could use a butter knife to cut through them to bordering the line of just burnt, Red’s aged certified angus beef prime steaks cater to every steak lover’s juiciest fantasies. Ribeye, New York strip, filet mignon and churrasco all come drenched in your choice of sauce, and when homemade gravy, green peppercorn, horseradish crème fraiche and black truffle demi are on the menu, you know you’re in for a treat. If you’re feeling like dipping your toes into something more aquatic, Red offers a variety of delicious seafood dishes, all fresh and reminiscent of waters from the Atlantic and the North Sea. Try the Maine lobsters that come bigger than the plates they’re served on or the Alaskan king crabs drenched in butter. These function as the perfect supplement to a meal made of decadent meats and succulent sauces.
If you’ve ever wondered what the adult-version of “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” would be, this is it. Sugar Factory is a place where your sugar high is ravamped in the form of bubba bubba gum martinis with bubble tape draping the side, signature lollipop passion cocktails with melon, coconut, pineapples and lollipops, or even the smores cocktails where marshmallows and chocolate blend to give a new version to this campfire staple. There’s the old-fashioned milkshake, which is, of course, anything but old fashioned. Choose from fluffernutter, chocolate cookie jar, Oreo and red velvet then add in the alcohol (optional) and potential toppings. In the case of the ocean blue, that would be blue gummy sharks and liquid nitrogen, which is guaranteed to fog up the table. Don’t be deceived by the allure of their drinks – the meals are just as appetizing. Choose from an assortment of crepes of French toasts, or go the more extravagant route with crispy calamari, zesty fish tacos or meatball Panini on herb ciabatta bread.
If You Go
- Address: 1930 Bay Road, Miami Beach, Fla. 33139
- Hours: Sundays to Thursdays 5-11 p.m. and Fridays to Saturdays 1 p.m. to 12 a.m.
- Phone: 305-695-4441
- Address: 1701 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, Fla. 33139
- Hours: Sundays to Thursdays 6-11 p.m. and Fridays to Saturdays 6 p.m. to 12 a.m.
- Phone: 305-455-2999
- Address: 1600 Lenox Ave., Miami Beach, Fla. 33139
- Hours: Mondays to Thursdays 11:30 a.m. to 11 p.m., Fridays 11:30 a.m. to 12 a.m. and Saturdays 9:30 a.m. to 12 a.m.
- Phone: 305-538-5220
- Address: 1506 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, Fla. 33139
- Hours: Sundays to Thursdays 12 p.m. to 12 a.m. and Fridays to Saturdays 12 p.m. to 2 a.m.
- Phone: 305-748-6099
Red, The Steakhouse
- Address: 119 Washington Ave., Miami Beach, Fla. 33139
- Hours: Sundays to Thursdays 5:30 p.m. to 12 a.m. and Saturdays to Sundays 5:30 p.m. to 1 a.m.
- Phone: 305-534-3688
- Address: 1144 Ocean Dr., Miami Beach, Fla. 33139
- Hours: Sundays to Thursdays 7 a.m. to 12 a.m., Fridays 7 a.m. to 2 a.m. and Saturdays 7 a.m. to 3 a.m.
- Phone: 305-604-0323