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Three Miami Spice Restaurants with killer views

Looking for a little ambience to go with your Miami Spice meal? Read below for a few of our favorite places to find great food and a great view.

The Rusty Pelican

The Rusty Pelican {3201 Rickenbacker Causeway, Key Biscayne; 305.361.3818}

Whether or not you sit inside or outside at The Rusty Pelican, you’ll still be able to see its million-dollar waterfront views. Located right on Biscayne Bay, the restaurant boasts floor-to-ceiling windows, a hot bayfront patio, and a contemporary American menu. If you’re there during Miami Spice, pair those views with Grilled Marinated Octopus, Lamb Ribs with chorizo crumbs and mint pea purée, Roasted Corvina with royal osetra caviar cream, or the six-hour braised Short Rib with truffle orecchiette pasta mac n’ cheese. Order the Florida-inspired Coconut Flan for dessert and trust us: you’re in paradise. 

Seaspice {422 Northwest North River Drive, Miami; 305.440.4200}

Sitting in an airy boathouse on the banks of the Miami River, Seaspice brings a slice of Saint-Tropez to Miami. Grab a seat on the deck at sunset and take it all in—the Miami skyline, yachts anchoring right at the restaurant, and, in true Magic City fashion, beautiful people-watching. When it comes to the food, choose appetizers like Crispy Tempura Squash Blossoms or Cauliflower Soup, and follow it up with Beef Wellington or Pan-Seared Local Black Grouper with leek fondue. End on a sweet note with Affogato with snickerdoodle or Caramelized Peaches with sweet corn ice cream.

Sawa Restaurant & Lounge {360 San Lorenzo Avenue, Suite 1500, Coral Gables; 305.447.6555}

Located in the palm-clad courtyard of the Shops of Merrick Park, Sawa Restaurant & Lounge combines a delicious Mediterranean-Japanese fusion menu with an idyllic setting amongst Merrick Park’s sophisticated shops. Start with appetizers like Vegan Ceviche or the Red is Virtuous/White is Sacred sushi roll. For your main dish, Paella Negra, Achiote-Rubbed Sous-Vide Short Ribs, Duck a la Ble, Salmon Casino, and the IBA 2.0 Roll with eel are all popular Miami Spice options. Finish with a delectable dessert, like the mango and strawberry Panna Cotta Duo, the Mini Cannoli Trio, or the Chocolate Mousse Cake Deluxe, and your palate will be as pleased as your eyes.

By Jennifer Agress, contributing writer

Miami Spice lunch deals you can’t refuse

It’s lunchtime in Miami! So where do you go? From August 1 to September 30, these restaurants promise the best bang for your Miami Spice buck. 

Plant Miami

Plant Miami {105 Northeast 24 Street, Wynwood; 305.814.5365}

Don’t let the word “plant” deter you—Plant Miami serves flavorful plant-based cuisine like you’ve never had before! The appetizer options include Smashed Avocado with cilantro and sunflower chia seed crisps, soup, or the Som Tam Salad with green papaya and housemade sesame-ginger dressing. After that, move on to mains like Kale & Avocado Salad, Sesame Ginger Noodles, or the Rainbowl with sprouted beans, quinoa, tahini, eggplant, kimchi, and a red pepper-tahini dressing. Round out the meal on a sweet note with a surprise from Pastry Chef Veronica Manolizi: Cheesecake inspired by the season’s best flavors.

Plant Miami’s Miami Spice lunch menu will be available Monday through Friday.

Novikov Miami {300 South Biscayne Boulevard, Downtown Miami; 305.489.1000}

When it comes to Miami Spice, this snazzy London transplant won’t disappoint. Head to Novikov Miami for lunch and take advantage of its varied menu. Think: appetizers like Spicy Salmon Maki, Wild Baby Squid, and Saffron and Sweetcorn Dim Sum, followed by Robata Salmon, Black Bean Chicken, Pork Ribs with ginger and sesame, or Vegetarian Singapore Noodle for your main dish. Desserts like Key Lime Tapioca and Umeshu Black Forest are different enough to satisfy every palate, bringing Novikov’s Miami Spice lunch menu to ten options in total.

Novikov’s Miami Spice lunch menu will be available Sunday through Friday.

Hakkasan {4441 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach; 786.276.1388}

Dim sum lunch is the best lunch—and Hakkasan whips enough up for two. During Miami Spice, head to the iconic Fontainebleau Miami Beach and enjoy a family-style lunch that begins with a dim sum basket of Chinese Chive Shrimp Dumplings, Spinach Beef Shui Mai with Crab Roe, and Seared Foie Gras Chicken Dumplings. Next up, indulge in plates of Baked Spicy Chicken Thigh with Cumin, Sautéed Shanghai Pak Choi with Mushroom, and Stir-Fry Udon Noodles with Duck and Black Pepper, also served family-style. End the meal with your choice of Mango Custard or Black Sesame Cheesecake, and you’re in for a treat.

Hakkasan’s Miami Spice lunch menu will be available on Saturday and Sunday only.

Boulud Sud Miami {255 Biscayne Boulevard Way, Downtown Miami; 305.421.8800}

Located on the bottom floor of the JW Marriott Marquis, Daniel Boulud’s coastal Mediterranean eatery, Boulud Sud, offers an expansive Miami Spice menu that brings out the flavors of Spain, Italy, Greece, Turkey, France, and more. Start with appetizers like Corn Soup or the “Horiatiki” Classic Greek Salad, and move on to your choice of Grilled Skirt Steak with mejadra rice, Branzino a la Plancha, Moroccan Shakshouka with a soft-poached hen egg, or Chicken Souvlaki with pita and tzatziki. Don’t leave without dessert, which is an absolute must here. Choose from Torrijas with a berry compote and sangría sorbet, Double Chocolate Mousse Cake, or Tiramisu Sundae with ladyfingers and coffee gelato.  

By Jennifer Agress, contributing writer

Call Me Gaby {22 Washington Avenue, Miami Beach; 305.531.4800}

Who is Gaby? It’s not just one woman, but all women who are elegant, strong, stylish, talented, and of course, show no mercy in the kitchen—especially when it comes to Pinsa Romana-style pizza! At Call Me Gaby, located in the South of Fifth neighborhood, owners Cathy and Anthony take you on a journey where a taste of Italy meets the South of France. The cozy and romantic décor with light wood, rustic furniture, and striped umbrellas truly capture the essence of the French Riviera. And, the charm doesn’t stop with the ambience, but rather is carried over to their signature dishes where the ingredients are mostly imported from Italy.

At Call Me Gaby, it’s all about the dough—incredibly fulfilling and delicious, yet won’t leave you feeling overly stuffed! How is that possible? Well, the dough undergoes a 72 hour leavening process as part of a centuries old tradition. The end result of this process is an incredibly light, airy, easy to digest, and mouthwatering dough that’s not only used for their Pinsa, but even their homemade focaccia and decadent dessert pizzas!

As you enjoy the crispy and fresh-out-of-the-oven focaccia, sip on your favorite Italian wine or pair it with a signature cocktail, such as the Gaby Margarita, a lychee martini, or the Black Forest Manhattan made with Rye whiskey infused with berries, sweet vermouth, and chocolate bitters.

Fresh out of the oven Focaccia

When it comes to the menu at Call Me Gaby, leave your passport behind, but fasten your seatbelt for a tastebud trip to Italy! Start your meal with the kitchen’s take on an antipasti served in a mason jar or with the refreshing watermelon salad served in the rind topped with goat cheese, mint, lemon zest, and pistachio crumble. Authentic is the word that comes to mind when describing the fare at Call Me Gaby and that rings true for one Italian favorite—the meatballs. As the Pot of Meatballs is placed on the table the fragrant smell of the homemade dish with whipped ricotta and chives follows, and you won’t be able to refrain from saying, “mmm!”

And, the “mmm” moments continue with Call Me Gaby’s homemade pastas and acclaimed pizzas. The girl-powered pizza shop, names all its pies after strong women. Find pizzas like the Andrea, made with Fig jam, fresh stracciatella, speck Alto Adige, and fresh rosemary; The Carla, made with mortadella, basil pesto, and pistachio crumble; or the Barbara, made with pumpkin cream, pancetta, smoked mozzarella, and shaved Pecorino-Romano. These are just a few of the adventurous and creative Pinsa pies on offer.

And of course, there are classic pizzas on the menu like the Romana with San Marzano tomatoes, anchovies, capers, black olives, and imported extra virgin olive oil; and the Diavola with San Marzano tomatoes, Fior di Latte, calabrese salami, and extra virgin olive oil.

After dinner, head to the lounge area for dessert and a nightcap. Whether you’re looking for a classic dessert like the tiramisù, the chocolate lava cake, or a dessert pizza, it’s sure to be nothing short of deliciously elegant. In the words of CoCo Chanel, “A girl should be two things: classy and fabulous.” This is what Call Me Gaby is all about. Is it a coincidence that the French fashion designer’s first name was Gaby? We think not!

By Loren Gutentag, contributing writer

Four Miami Spice Restaurants for Couples

Jaya at The Setai

With 200-plus restaurants offering three-course dinners for just $39 per person, Miami Spice is one of the best times of year to treat your special someone to an extravagant night out on the town. But with so many great restaurants, how do you know where to go? That’s where we come in. Read below for our favorite date-worthy restaurants on the Miami Spice list.

Pao by Paul Qui {3201 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach; 786.655.5630}

James Beard Award-winning chef and restaurateur, Paul Qui, runs a sexy Asian restaurant in the extravagant Faena Hotel—and its sultry hues, whimsical unicorn statue, and intimate ambience make it a great place for a date night. Go during Miami Spice, and you and your S.O. can enjoy a three-course meal with Kinilaw, Pao’s popular Fried Chicken with roasted banana ketchup, Mushroom Bistek, Sisig Rice with crispy pork and fried egg, and for dessert, Elderflower Peach Sorbet with almond baba and Concord grape syrup.
*Miami Spice dinner at Pao by Paul Qui will be available every Tuesday through Saturday, from August 1 through September 30.

Café Roval {5808 Northeast 4 Court, Miami; 786.953.7850}

With its coral-rock walls, antique chandeliers, torchlit patio, and cascading waterfall, the Mediterranean-inspired Café Roval is definitely one of Miami’s most romantic restaurants. During Miami Spice, treat your special someone to appetizers like barbecued cobia Kebabs with manouri cheese or Buttone with braised lamb neck and green olives, followed by Gnocchi with rabbit sausage, Whole Orata with a fava bean labneh, or a Mixed Grill Platter with urfa peppers and tarator sauce. Finish the meal with Chocolate Marsala Cake, a Macadamia Nut Tart, or a Roasted Strawberry and Coconut Sorbet, and leave with a happy heart and a full stomach.
*Miami Spice dinner at Café Roval will be available every Sunday through Thursday, from August 1 through September 30.

Jaya at The Setai {2001 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach; 855.923.7899}

The Setai, Miami Beach is like an Asian temple, and inside, Jaya at The Setai serves a menu of Indian-inspired fare with Thai, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and Vietnamese influences. Grab a seat in the intimate dining room, or for a real romantic ambience, opt for a candlelit table by the hotel’s courtyard zen pond. Appetizers like Hamachi with avocado mousse and Chive or Truffle Dumplings are on the menu, as well as main dishes like Faroe Island Salmon with cardamom-scented sweet potato purée, Green Curry vegetables, Lamb Masala, and a tandoor-baked Chilean Sea Bass. For a romantic ending, get the Textures of Valrhona Chocolate with milk chocolate mousse, chocolate nib crumble, white chocolate snow, and chocolate sorbet, or the Masala Chai Crème Brûlée with chai-infused custard and a spiced chantilly.
*Miami Spice dinner at Jaya at The Setai will be available every night of the week, from August 1 through September 30. 

Palme d’Or {1200 Anastasia Avenue, Coral Gables; 305.913.3189}

As if The Biltmore wasn’t alluring enough, try its signature French restaurant and you’ll never want to leave. Helmed by Michelin-star Chef Gregory Pugin, Palme d’Or serves haute French cuisine in an elegant, vintage setting. Start with appetizers like Pan-Seared Lump Crab Cake with a curry aïoli or Pate de Foie Gras with brioche chips and buttery sautéed apples. From there, move on to Roasted Duck Breast with a wild berry gastrique or the Marinated Flat Iron Steak with shishito peppers and a pink peppercorn sauce. The desserts are sure to be as sweet as your other half—think: Madagascar Vanilla Cream with soft caramel, Chocolate Fondant Cake, or a Macaroon Tart with pineapple compote and mango sauce.
*Miami Spice dinner at Palme d’Or will be available every Tuesday through Saturday, from August 1 through September 30. 

By Jennifer Agress, contributing writer

These in-house eateries aren’t just for tourists

In Miami, we’re no stranger to hotel restaurants, whether it’s a mega-resort catering to visitors or boutique hotels looking to woo locals for a staycation. But finding a good hotel restaurant can often be a challenge. Fortunately, a plethora of exceptional hotel restaurants have sprung up over the past decade, attracting both locals and out-of-towners looking for a beautiful meal in a beautiful setting. Here are our favorites.

Lido Restaurant & Bayside Grill at The Standard

Edge Steak and Bar {Four Seasons Hotel, 1435 Brickell Avenue, Miami; 305.381.3190}

Chef Aaron Brooks helms this modern steakhouse at the Four Seasons downtown which has proven popular among local food lovers and visitors alike. The dining room feels cozy and urbane with a large rectangular-shaped marble bar lit by dangling exposed string lights and white-washed oak tables flanked by cream leather booths.

The kitchen focuses on locally-sourced ingredients that work their way into shellfish starters, hefty slabs of beef, and creative mains like the Basil-Crusted Corvina with piquillo peppers. A gorgeous outdoor terrace offers downtown skyline views.

The Bazaar by Jose Andres {SLS Hotel, 1701 Collins Avenue, Suite 100, Miami Beach; 305.455.2999}

Prepare for sensory overload at this clubby outpost for global tapas and exotic cocktails. Like its LA counterpart, there are two dining rooms: “rojo,” a red and black accented spot in the hotel’s lobby with black leather couches and a bull’s head clad in a lucha libre mask;  and “blanca,” a quieter option adorned with a massive seashell-clad chandelier.

The epic menu contains anywhere from 60-80 items that change daily but can include Bacalao Fritters served in a clear plastic sneaker and a Scallop Risotto presented in a coconut shell.

La Mar {Mandarin Oriental Hotel, 500 Brickell Key Drive, Miami; 305.913.8358}

Peruvian Chef Gaston Acurio’s downtown Miami outpost occupies a gorgeous waterfront spot at Brickell Key’s Mandarin Oriental. The main dining room is awash in shades of watery greens, sandy grays, and beiges and wood, but it’s the enticing outdoor terrace that offers glittering views of downtown. It provides the perfect backdrop to Chef Diego Oka’s contemporary Peruvian dishes with colorful tweaks.

Lido Restaurant & Bayside Grill {The Standard Hotel, 40 Island Avenue, Miami Beach; 305.673.1717}

The Standard’s hipster-friendly pool deck is also home to one of South Beach’s best waterfront patios. Chef Mark Zeitouni’s menu emphasizes Mediterranean dishes that please vegetarians and carnivores alike.

Zuma {Epic Hotel, 270 Biscayne Boulevard Way, Downtown; 305.577.0277}

Upscale Asian dishes compliment a dock crowded with million-dollar yachts. If you’re looking to indulge, reserve a spot during their weekend brunch where the restaurant rolls out nearly the entire menu: buffets of endless fresh sushi, skewers of marinated beef and vegetables from the robata grill, and prepared salads. Then there’s a bottomless glass of Louis Roederer Champagne in addition to Bloody Marys made with robata-grilled tomatoes. And it all goes perfectly with the waterfront views of downtown. 

By Sara Liss, contributing writer

Miami’s cocktail culture is constantly evolving and has touted everything from craft concoctions to personality-driven bars with celeb chef credibility. But despite all the homemade bitters and artisanal shrubs, one thing remains the same: the bigger and more outrageous, the better; and the cocktail world is no exception. So herewith, we bring you the most over-the-top cocktail vessels we’ve seen around town—the perfect specimens to blow up your Instagram (and get you buzzed). Bottoms up!

Pao by Paul Qui {3201 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach; 786.655.5630}

Pao Unicorn
Horn King at Pao by Paul Qui

Pao by Paul Qui’s Unicorn Cocktail glass is used for the “Horn King” cocktail—made with Bacardi 8 Rum, luxardo maraschino cherries, passion fruit, lime, and Hamilton 151 Rum Flaming Shell. It pays homage to the $6 million Damien Hirst golden unicorn statue that lords over the dining room. Pro tip: the cup is meant for the Horn King cocktail, but you can request any drink to be served in this stylish copper glass. Stubborn Seed {101 Washington Avenue, Miami Beach; 786.322.5211}

Sweet Liberty {237 20th Street, Suite B, Miami Beach; 305.763.8217}

Industry insiders can always be found at South Beach hangout spot Sweet Liberty where “The Bear Hug,” a concoction made with Barr Hill gin, raw honey, yellow Chartreuse, fresh pressed apple cider, lemon juice, and Prosecco, is presented in a glass gummy bear jar festooned with lemon and fresh mint. It’s the perfectly refreshing and whimsical way to cool down this summer.

Kiki On The River {450 Northwest North River Drive, Miami; 786.502.3243}

Miami River hotspot Kiki on the River takes inspiration from its sea-friendly setting with the “Roman’s Conch,” a  cocktail made for 4-6 people and served inside a ceramic conch shell made with Santa Teresa 1796 Rum, Velvet Falernum, Oloroso Sherry, passion fruit, fresh lime juice, freh grapefruit juice, and bitters ($65).

By Sara Liss, contributing writer

Seared scallops with mushroom duxelles and crispy kale

First impressions matter, and at Vista, it’s impossible to leave unimpressed. The chic chef-driven restaurant in Upper Buena Vista is unlike any other, given its sprawling patio seating that includes a rooftop lounge. The seafood-forward, vegetable-focused menu offers varied selections that wow diners on all fronts.

Because of the diverse offerings, patrons of all palates should have no issue finding something they like. Starters are plentiful and perfectly portioned. Items like the Hot Ginger Shrimp with Fresno peppers and the Zucchini Flowers stuffed with smoked eggplant are delectable and will have you fighting over the last piece. The easy solution is to order a second helping, but, of course, that leaves less room for other standouts like the Artichokes and Verts, a hearty mixed greens salad that also features avocado and a subtle yet tasty lemon vinaigrette (it’s a meal in itself).

More than a dozen mains are available to bring your meal full circle, including a beautiful Branzino with spinach and heirloom tomato butter. It may sound simple on paper (especially compared to other entrées), but the dynamic flavors tell another tale; don’t overlook this masterpiece.

Another highlight: Seared Scallops with mushroom duxelles and crispy kale. What really brings the dish together is the boniato purée, which makes for an ideal complement to the tender shellfish. Landlubbers need not worry, as Wagyu Bavette, Duck Tagliatelle, and the beloved Vista Burger are just a few of the many non-seafood options that grace the menu.

Should you save room for dessert, the Crème Brûlée and Panna Cotta are both lighter dishes that should satisfy your sweet tooth without too much guilt. But frankly, you’re more than likely ready to call it a night at this point in the meal.

Don’t leave without a drink from the expansive drink list, however. Cocktails tend to lean on the light and sweet side here—you’ll find a lot of fruit names in the ingredients—but there are also libations with a bit of bite, such as the bourbon-based Stone Sour.

Ultimately, Vista is a place best frequented in a group. The menu is long and diverse, and coming with a big party allows you to make the most of it. That said, couples and solo diners can still do some damage; the temptation to order a lot of food is very real. One thing’s for sure regardless of your party size: Repeat visits are in order. 

By Geoffrey Anderson Jr. and Dianne Rubin-Anderson, contributing writers

Octopus with potato lobster rouille and watercress gazpacho

Blink, and you’ll miss it. Alloy Bistro Gourmet, located in the heart of Downtown Miami, is a bit hidden from the hustle and bustle of the city, but eagle-eyed visitors are in for a treat. Inside this cozy eatery, expect nothing short of an unforgettable meal by Chef Federico Genovese, who’s been cooking up inspired Mediterranean fare here since 2016 (before Downtown Miami became the culinary hotspot it is today).

On the menu, you’ll find an array of options, from starters like Baby Spinach salad, Burrata, and Cauliflower, as well as heartier plates such as Beef Tartare and Octopus. While these items may sound familiar, you’ll see that there’s more than meets the eye once you read the descriptions. That octopus, for example, is more than just octopus—the plate is spiced up with potato lobster rouille and watercress gazpacho; creativity that extends to its presentation under a smoky bell jar, which is destined to show up on your next Instagram post.

If you only order one starter though, make it the Duck Prosciutto. Aged for three months, the duck is simply seasoned with freshly ground black pepper. There’s not much to it, yet there’s no need for anything more, showcasing flavors that easily stand on their own.

Dishes at Alloy Bistro Gourmet are designed for sharing, and there’s good reason for that: You’ll be tempted to try a lot of things. This is especially true of the pastas, of which there are several, and all of them bear a description that should make your mouth water. As we found out firsthand, they’ll also challenge your palate and preconceptions.

An eye-opening experience for us was the Smoked Tagliatelle. Although it contains short rib ragu—not an unfamiliar ingredient—our interest was piqued by the use of paprika oil. Our curiosity paid off, as we encountered a taste that we hadn’t come across before…one that almost made us order a second portion.

Another pasta highlight: the Ravioli Carciofo, which comes out looking like a beautiful flower. And don’t get us started on the Branzino Filet that arrives to your table inside a salted crust. That’s what makes Alloy special: Your food doesn’t just taste great—it looks great, too.

Too many times, a restaurant relies on gimmicks or outlandish flare to make up for lackluster food, but at Alloy Bistro Gourmet, there’s a rhyme and reason to every single detail. Ultimately, these efforts result in an unforgettable dining experience…an experience you’ll be rushing to share with your peers.

By Geoffrey Anderson Jr. and Dianne Rubin-Anderson, contributing writers


Not always so easy to find… but worth it when you do.

Seaspice on the Miami River

It’s a Miami-specific conundrum: so much water surrounding us, yet so few spots to actually enjoy it. But thankfully, there are many places that have been taking advantage of their waterfront locations for years and a few newer ones that have popped up recently to maximize that alfresco potential. We indulged in the views and all the fresh seafood to bring you this list of our favorite waterfront dining in the city.

Upscale Asian dishes complement a dock crowded with million-dollar yachts. If you’re looking to indulge, reserve a spot during their weekend brunch where the restaurant rolls out almost the entire menu: buffets of endless fresh sushi, skewers of marinated beef and vegetables from the robata grill, and prepared salads. Then there’s a bottomless glass of Louis Roederer Champagne in addition to Bloody Marys made with robata-grilled tomatoes. And it all goes perfectly with the waterfront views of downtown. 

La Mar {500 Brickell Key Drive, Downtown; 305.913.8358}

Peruvian Chef Gaston Acurio’s downtown Miami outpost occupies a gorgeous waterfront spot at Brickell Key’s Mandarin Oriental. The main dining room is awash in shades of watery greens, sandy grays, creamy beiges, and polished wood, but it’s the enticing outdoor terrace that offers glittering views of downtown. It provides the perfect backdrop to Chef Diego Oka’s contemporary Peruvian dishes with colorful tweaks.

Mondrian South Beach {1100 West Avenue, Miami Beach; 305.514.1910}

On Sundays, the place feels a bit like a Jay-Z video with bikini-clad pool lovers waving at the massive yachts that cruise the hotel’s enviable bayfront location. But during the week, the scene is more sedate with downtown skyscrapers twinkling in the distance and Mondrian Caffe’s menu of crowd-pleasing dishes like Kale Caesar and grilled skirt steak to keep you satisfied.

Garcia’s Seafood Grille and Fish {398 Northwest North River Drive, Downtown; 305.375.0765}

This Miami institution has been doing it right for years. Fresh seafood, reliable service, and a steady stream of locals tucking into platters of stone crabs and poached shrimp. Putter up to the back of the restaurant where waiters provide service directly onto the boats.

Seaspice {422 Northwest North River Drive, Downtown; 305.440.4200}

This two-building complex on the Miami River has already proven a hit with downtown’s well-heeled crowd. The restaurant’s large warehouse-like windows roll up giving the dining room a pleasant indoor-outdoor feel. The history of the spot dates back to Howard Huges, apparently it was his seaplane hangar and still has the rusted rigging intact to prove it. A dock that spans 250 feet with an additional dock across the river has hosted its share of mega-yachts that (sometimes) block the river views.

Kiki On The River {450 Northwest North River Drive, Miami; 786.502.3243}

And right next door is this boho-chic modern Greek taverna with those same Miami River views, this time framed by whitewashed nautical seating, lush greenery, and trees festooned with glass orbs. Chef Steven Rhee whips up food of the gods with mezzes, grilled seafood, lamb chops, and luscious feta-topped salads. 

Artisan Beach House {10295 Collins Avenue, Bal Harbour; 305.455.5400}

The restaurant at Ritz-Carlton Bal Harbour’s classy spot is the stuff of postcards.  The gorgeous sprawling dining room features floor-to-ceiling views of the ocean and the busy Haulover inlet, where speedboats regularly putter by. Whitewashed walls and comfortable leather booths balance the grandeur of the setting, but the best spot to dine is still the outdoor patio where ocean breezes mingle with views of Haulover marina and the bar’s loungey soundtrack. The seafood-centric menu features quinoa tuna poke and charred octopus with Vadouvan carrots.

Duffy’s Sports Grill {3969 Northeast 163rd Street, North Miami Beach; 305.760.2124}

This massive restaurant-lounge has a whopping 200 flatscreens, an outdoor pool, and a 500-foot dock. Located on the west side of the intra-coastal waterway, Duffy’s is known as a sports-watching haven and a popular happy hour spot. Extensive covered patio seating makes it an ideal spot to take in the salty breezes.

By Sara Liss, contributing writer

And it’s not even Miami Spice yet

There’s something almost mystical about the Faena Miami Beach. Spread across four blocks on and around Collins Avenue, this opulent destination isn’t just a hotel; it’s a district. Along with rooms and leisure spaces fitted with floor-to-ceiling Juan Gatti wall murals, Alberto Garruti-designed chandeliers, and colorful, mosaic floors, the Faena comes with its own beach club, nightly Cirque du Soleil-like cabaret performances, a shopping complex, and one of the best spas in South Florida: the 22,000-square-foot Tierra Santa Healing House. 

Of course, as you explore it all, you’ll no doubt need to stop and refuel—and when it comes to restaurants, the Faena Miami Beach does not disappoint. Choose between authentic Argentine live-fire cooking at Los Fuegos by Francis Mallmann {3201 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach; 786.655.5610}and out-of-the-box Asian cuisine at Pao by Paul Qui {3201 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach; 786.655.5600}. Giving you a reason to go there right now, both spots are offering summer prix-fixe menus from now until July 31. Bonus? All of the restaurants’ top dishes will be on the menu.

Local Snapper “A La Plancha” at Los Fuegos by Francis Mallmann

At Los Fuegos, guests can find out why South America’s most celebrated chef, Francis Mallmann, is so celebrated. Here, get a modern take on traditional Argentine fare; think: roasted meats, fish, vegetables, and even charred desserts cooked in an open-fire kitchen. Available for both dinner and lunch, the summer prix-fixe menu includes three courses of the restaurant’s most raved-about plates, like Wood Oven Empanadas, Yellowfin Tuna Crudo, Black Angus Skirt Steak, Local Snapper “A La Plancha,” Roasted Cauliflower, Key Lime Crumble, and more. The summer lunch menu is priced at $29 per person and is available Monday through Friday. The summer dinner menu is priced at $48 per person and is available Sunday through Thursday.

Fried Chicken at Pao by Paul Qui

Go to Pao, with overlooks the hotel’s “Path of the Warrior” and promises views of the Atlantic Ocean, and get a taste of James Beard Award-winning Paul Qui’s innovative take on Asian food. This summer, stop by for dinner and indulge in a four-course menu with popular dishes like Fried Chicken, Smoked Short Rib Laab, Sisig Rice, Roasted Fish, and Coconut Tapioca. The summer dinner menu is priced at $55 per person and is available every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.

Happy dining!

By Jennifer Agress | Miami Editor