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lax2mia's Profile

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Dumpling King in North Miami Beach (near King's Palace)

Joining the fray after X years. We dropped into Dumpling King a month or two ago and while they're not the pinnacle of soup dumpling they're definitely passable. If you've never had soup dumplings before, suggest reading up on how to go about eating them. Saw a couple of first timers spit out their first dumpling from the heat. Always fun to watch!

Brunch/Miami Spice questions

Verde at the Perez Art Museum is actually really good. Simple menu but very well done and the view is incredible.

Trader Joe's?!?

OK, I'll take the bait. Two observations:

First, I'd love to know where you shop to think that nothing at Trader Joe's is inexpensive. Pretty much every item I see at TJ's is cheaper than the comparable item at Publix. That said, Publix has taken advantage of their almost monopoly in urban areas to drive up prices and I don't see that abating until there's more competition.

Point two, TJ's produce is not great and I agree I'd take Fresh Market's over TJ's in that area any day (but remember, you're paying for it). Overall selection is also better at pretty much any supermarket because TJ's business model is to have a single producer for each product so it's unfair to compare to a regular supermarket in that aspect. One funny observation I'd made, Trader Joe's carries as many brands and types of authentic maple syrup as Publix carries fake syrups. That said, the quality of the products they do have are a steal for the money, particularly organic and vegan items. And there are some items that are unique to Trader Joe's that you're just not going to find anywhere else. Frozen French macarons, Korean scallion pancakes, steel cut oatmeal with quinoa and South African smoke seasoning are just a few of the things that you can't find anywhere else, regardless of price.

Dim Sum in Sunny Isles


Truffle XLB Are Almost Here!

Had the truffle XLB in Shanghai and wasn't a fan. It proved there's such a thing as too much truffle. Stick with pork or pork and crab.

Nov 09, 2013
lax2mia in Los Angeles Area

Alma or Allumette, Bestia or Bucato...oh and Orsa & Winston

First trip back to my hometown in over 5 years and planning has been tough. Booked a table at Alma but mixed reviews have me hesitant. Saw the menu and concept at Allumette and was intrigued. Also booked Bestia but unlike Alma it looks like sentiment is universally positive. Bucato caught my eye too but didn't want to have Italian twice during my short stay so looking for opinions on which.

Unrelated, also booked Orsa & Winston. Saw there's 5 and 9 course options. Anyone know if they are different or is 9 course just an extension of the 5?

Lastly, seems like every restaurant I look at is closed Sunday, Monday or both. Any favorites that are open Sunday/Monday?

Nov 09, 2013
lax2mia in Los Angeles Area

Looking for Bundaberg Ginger Beer

Wow, didn't know of anyone else that was a fan of this. Only place I'd found it was on trips to to World Market in Naples (on our trips to load up on Trader Joe's supplies). Glad it's now found locally.

Hottest Taco Joint in Miami

If it's Con Sabor a Mexico the place and tacos are bare bones. They're as good as you'll get in Miami. Hopefully that'll change.

Hottest Taco Joint in Miami

Same. Their michelada was the best I've ever had.

Also to the OP: Miami isn't known for tacos.

Trader Joe's?!?

Looks like it's getting there.

In miami beach. Need some recs north of south beach

I'm drinking more caipirinhas than pretty much anybody when I go there. It's just basic but I like the atmosphere.

As an aside I completely forgot, and can't believe we all did, Lou's Beer Garden. They specialize in craft beer and have a great little menu. Only negative is that it's completely outdoors and on a muggy day it can get to you.

In miami beach. Need some recs north of south beach

In addition to Frod's recs and sticking further up 79th St. Causeway you've got Boteco, which is a very casual, chill place for Brazilian food. There's also a decent Cuban bakery called Yiya's which I'd go to only if you were making your way toward Biscayne.

On an unrelated note, Captains Tavern is a pretty long haul from where you are. Is there a particular reason for making the trek or are you just looking for seafood? Captain Jim's in N. Miami is much closer and may have what you're looking for.

Help me finalize my Miami itinerary!

Is The Dutch doing fried chicken again? I know they took it off the menu for a while, at least at lunch.

farmers markets in miami area

In short, there should be, but there isn't.

Dish recommendations at Cvi.Che 105 please!

I wasn't a fan of their ceviche at all. Fish had been sitting too long so it was very tough. Pieces were fairly large as well, which I have a feeling they do in order to prolong the shelf life of the product (smaller pieces get toughened by the citric acid faster than larger ones). Causa was decent though.

Help with 7 hours in Miami

There's no light rail in Miami. You'll take either two or three modes of transportation. The Metrorail to get from the airport to downtown and the bus to get to the beach (or a cab). In between you may need to take the Metromover to from a Metrorail station to a bus station. Here's the link to the transit site which has info for all three.

There is nothing interesting at Government Center and it's too far from Little Havana to walk to.

Help with 7 hours in Miami

Government Center is the main stop downtown and it's where the most buses take off from. Or you can grab a cab from there.

Just saw you said you'd been to South Beach before. A lot of high rises have popped up but the Deco architecture is the same so if you've seen it I'd recommend going to another area like Wynwood/Midtown/Design District. Wynwood in particular is a walker's paradise. It has one of the highest concentrations of art galleries in the city, but along with the indoor art galleries, almost every building has allowed street artists to paint their facades. It's still a gentrifying neighborhood but it's incredibly unique and interesting. You'll find tons of places to eat there as well: Jimmyz (specializing in Puerto Rican mofongo) or Clives (for Jamaican, but is closing soon). Nearby are the Midtown and Design District neighborhoods which open up even more opportunities for walking and dining. While Midtown is a recent development and the architecture is meh you'll find some worthy places to eat (Sugarcane and Sakaya Kitchen are probably the first choices). Moving further north you get into the Design District with buildings from the 1930's and even better dining (Michael's, Oak Tavern, MC Kitchen). It also looks like you don't need to be at the airport till later so you could make it to a happy hour at any of the DD or Midtown spots. These areas will change your perception of Miami just being about beach and pastel-colored buildings. Plus as this area is on the Miami side of the bay it'll save a lot on cab fare.

Report: One year of visiting Miami (long)

At Pubbelly mofongo is a side, Jimmyz mofongo is a meal. I agree Pubbelly's is better but Jimmyz serves with well prepared proteins. Pubbelly mofongo with Jimmyz creole shrimp would be ridiculous.

Help with 7 hours in Miami

Frod's got great tips. His idea of take-out from My Ceviche, or even Joe's, and have an impromptu picnic at South Pointe Park, or even on the closeby beach itself, would be more memorable than lunch at a sit down place. That said if you're still looking for more sit down and local then Tap Tap would be something you probably couldn't find in Boston.

As for logistics, there's a metro that takes you from the airport to downtown. From there I'm sure there's buses to get to the beach, or take a cab from downtown and it'll be cheaper than from the airport. While on the beach there's a city-run bike system (a la Paris' Velib) called Deco Bike that'll make getting around a bit quicker. As for museums I like the Wolfsonian more than the Bass.

Best Miami Tasting Menu Option

Like Frod said, Miami is not big on tasting menus so keep your expectations tempered if you're pinning your "splurge dinner" on that format. That said, there are plenty of places to splurge without tasting menus. There are also places that, while they don't offer tasting menus, their concept is such that plates are small and shareable and you can create your own experience (Pubbelly is such a place and I'd go there over Yardbird). Another option is to give Naoe a call and get on a wait list. It's definitely worth the trouble.

Miami - one night

So you've narrowed it down to Michy's and the Bazaar. Both have their merits and to me it would depend on what you're planning to do the rest of the night. If you want to have a mellow dinner which leans towards more classic dishes and techniques then I'd choose Michy's. If you're looking for something edgier and that's more of a scene head to the Bazaar (even though it's known for inventive takes on Spanish food, I tend to think the classic Spanish dishes are actually better). None of Andres' restaurants in DC are like the Bazaar so even though it's and Andres place, it fills your requirement of something you can't get in DC/NY/PHL.

You won't be disappointed with either, they're just different experiences. Both are about the same in the value scale.

As for stone crabs, it depends what time you get in. If you can fit in a late lunch I'd make a b-line for either Joe's or My Ceviche, get some crab claws and walk a few blocks to South Pointe Park and have an impromptu picnic.

On your way to the airport just stop by a Cuban coffee window. They're attached to pretty much every Cuban restaurant. Order a cortadito and maybe a guava pastry. Should you miss that opportunity there's places at the airport to get your fix (mainly La Carreta outside Terminal E or inside Terminal D or the many Cafe Versailles around the airport).

VPE Rated Khong River 4 Stars in Sobe

Maybe it was a combined score of bar + restaurant (in my case it'd be 3 + 1, respectively).

Decent Supermarket Tomato - Found at Last?

The Campari I've seen usually come from a greenhouse in Canada.

Need a suggestion for a business dinner for ~10 people near the Mandarin.

There's also River Oyster Bar (it's more restaurant but it has a popular bar). It is slightly upscale but very unstuffy. I believe they have a private room as well.

Beer by the bottle, coffee by the pound

Not sure where you are in Doral, but you can shoot down the Palmetto, transfer to the Don Shula and go to Sunset Corners. As mentioned in prior replies, Cigar City is a must.

Coral Gables via cab :( HELP

Depends where in CG you're staying. If it were between Graziano's in CG vs. going up to Bird Rd. I'd just stay with the one in the Gables. Cuban is pretty much the same everywhere. Havana Harry's is a favorite when I take people from out of town. Gables has gotten dominated by chains in recent years so it's tough to recommend something different.

Sobe wine and food fest grand tasting is $225?!!

The first year we had comp tix but I remember it was around $50 and it was a blast. It went downhill from there. I can't believe Burger Bash is $225. For $25 you can go to a sitdown dinner at Bourbon Steak w 5 chefs from SFO and eat with real plates and silverware. Price points are very erratic.

Shake Shack PP&J custard every Tuesday this month

Totally disagree. Food is the same aside from the concretes, TVs are great and the servers clear your table for you. Curious what'd you find that was lacking?

Visiting from Los Angeles, what to eat for 5 days ?

Cuban food is obviously everywhere here and it's all about the same. I've taken most of my friends that visit from Cali to Havana Harry's and they love it. It's not in Little Havana but not incredibly far and it'll take you into Coral Gables which you may want to see.

I'd add these guys to Frod's recs in the NB area:

- Lou's Beer Garden at the New Hotel for a very chill evening. They have a small, changing menu, reasonably priced and although it's on Harding feels very out of the way.

- Broken Shaker @ the Freehand: a pop-up bar turned permanent. Good cocktails and occasional BBQs on Saturdays. Nothing groundbreaking but a great way to spend an afternoon or evening.

Remember you're also close to South Beach which opens up a large # of establishments in a small area. If you're looking for cheap to moderate:

- Tap Tap: a Haitian restaurant that's been around forever. Probably won't find this in SoCal.

- Joe's take-out: Joe's stone crab is an institution, and you pay for it. The take out area serves the same food, but counter service. You can eat it there or walk a couple of blocks to the beach or park and have a picnic.

- My Ceviche: Near Joe's and an even smaller take-out place for ceviches and stone crabs (stone crabs aren't cheap, but heck, you're on vacation).

Also, if there is a Wallcast at the New World Symphony during your stay you should definitely try to go. They project whatever concert is going on inside the building onto a giant wall outside in front of a lawn enveloped by an incredible sound system. Grab take-out at one of the two places I mentioned, buy a cheap blanket and watch a great concert under the stars (where else can you do that in the middle of January?).

NY Asian Mart in Sunrise