Miami Nice: Food City Of The Year

Food & Drink

There’s no doubt that Miami deserves its title as “America’s Hottest Dining Scene.” Bon Appétit has just named Miami as “2023 Food City of the Year.” And, arriving in Florida for the first time in 2022, the Michelin Guide awarded new stars to some of the city’s favorite restaurants, plus eight local restaurants, chefs and bakeries are finalists in the 2023 James Beard Awards. A recent Greater Miami and Miami Beach Visitor Industry Report showed a 50% increase in food tourism in 2021, surpassing pre-pandemic numbers. Along with offering a wide range of international cuisines, Miami’s diverse food scene is influenced by its own multicultural population, a blend of Latin American, Caribbean and American, with a heavy emphasis on seafood and tropical fruits. Showing the vast variety of dining options, here’s a selection of some of the best places to eat in this vibrant foodie hotspot.

Avra Estiatorio

One of New York’s most popular restaurants has recently opened in Florida. The smart Greek dining room overlooks the ocean inside the Estates at Acqualina. Menu highlights include an impressive raw bar, local grilled fish and Wagyu ribeye.

Café Bastille

This buzzy, all-day brunch place, open seven days a week, serves up French-inspired dishes and delicious baked goods. The contemporary space, designed by owners Estelle and Benjamin, features sleek marble counters, polished wooden tables and cozy booths. The menu has all the French staples like Croque Madame and Eggs Benedict on croissant. And, anyone with a sweet tooth will be happy with their bakery selection of delectable filled croissants, cookies and other pastries. It’s no wonder that this French-inspired gem has quickly become one of Miami’s best brunch restaurants. And next month they’ll open a bakery and juice bar next door.

Branja

MasterChef Israel winner, Tom Aviv, has launched his first U.S. restaurant inside Miami’s Upper Buena Vista complex. Aviv’s Israeli background has influenced the menu with highlights like Fishwarma, a spiced fish dish and Krouv (cabbage) prepared like a slow-cooked short rib. For a special dining experience book a place at the twelve-seat Chef’s Table with a bar designed by Lenny Kravitz.

Ayesha

Mumbai-born Mike Hussain, founder of Ayesha Group could be described as the “Godfather” of proper Indian food in Miami. His four authentic Indian restaurants, in and around Miami, fuse Indian and American cuisine, using flavorful spices of India and Florida’s finest seafood. All the favorites are here at this friendly neighborhood restaurant, from samosas and tandoor dishes, to seekh kebab, served with sizzling green sauce and Butter Chicken and Chicken Korma. Four decades, four countries and seventeen restaurants later, Mike Hussain still does his best to bring a melange of aromas and flavors from the East to the West.

Ariete

Mike Beltran’s Coconut Grove restaurant serves up a winning combination of homestyle Cuban cooking and modern American cuisine. Grilled oysters with bone marrow and truffle chicken with tamal en cazuela are just two of the tantalising dishes here.

Giselle Miami

One of the city’s top nightclubs (open 24 hours) E11even now features a rooftop restaurant and lounge merging Asian, Mediterranean and French cuisines. The chic terrace has great views of downtown Miami and serves moreish seafood dishes like Chilean sea bass and flaming lobster thermidor as well as truffle toast and pork ribs. Also on offer is a six-course tasting menu.

Stubborn Seed

Top Chef winner Jeremy Ford dishes up modern American cuisine that deserves its newly awarded Michelin star. From starters like jalapeño fritters to roasted barramundi served with stewed onions, the menu at Stubborn Seed in South Beach will not disappoint.

Red Rooster Overtown

Ethiopian/Swedish chef Marcus Samuelsson made his name at New York’s Michelin-starred Aquavit and is well known for his popular Red Rooster restaurant in Harlem. He’s brought that restaurant concept to the Miami Overtown neighborhood. The soul food menu adds Latin and Caribbean influences with gems like the cornbread with jalapeño honey butter and chicken with sour orange honey. The vibe is just as lively as in the New York location.

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