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Frodnesor's Profile

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Good ramen place in South Broward

I've tried Go Bistro once and the ramen (I think I had the tonkotsu) was serviceably decent. I'm intrigued by the Malaysian laksa style.

MIA (Miama International Airport) American Airlines - Anything good to eat to take on plane?

American flies through Gates D and E. Other than the garden variety chains, your options according to MIA website (and my recollection) are La Carreta, Ice Box Cafe, Half Moon Empanadas, and Islander Bar & Grill. There's also a Beaudevin which is a chain but not a terrible one. I've had things from Ice Box that are genuinely decent, and a pastelito & cafecito from La Carreta is a serviceable breakfast. I wouldn't be saving my appetite for the opportunity to eat at any of these, but I've been to airports with far worse options.

ETA - I don't like Sushi Maki and think Lorena Garcia is actually an elaborate joke.

Authentic Japanese in Fort Lauderdale

I guess I need to try Maido. I've only been to Matsuri twice in the past few years, but both times found the rice disappointing - underseasoned and either dry or pasty, I can no longer recall at this point other than that I didn't like it.

2015 Miami Spice

Federal's Spice menu looks pretty representative.
I haven't been to Toscana Divino since Julian Baker left the kitchen.

Authentic Japanese in Fort Lauderdale

I just posted a few pics on flickr of a few new additions to the regular menu at Yakko-San.

The truck in Wynwood is Myumi. I thought it was very good. I've been meaning to go back but may wait til it cools off before having an outdoor meal. Some pics here:

Authentic Japanese in Fort Lauderdale

Sushi Deli uses a toaster oven to warm unagi and salmon skin, to toast nori, and to broil salmon for the salmon teriyaki lunch plate. If that's all that you're using the oven for, why would you need a bigger piece of equipment? I've seen that fairly often in sushi places here. Given the tiny size of many places in Japan I suspect it's quite common there too.

If it's good enough for Eric Ripert, it's good enough for me.

Also: look closely at what one of your favorites, Su Shin Izakaya, has behind the sushi bar:

Anyway, setting aside equipment issues, Matsuri's fish can be good but I've never had good rice there. I am a big fan of Su-Shin but not for their sushi, which is generally typical commodity level stuff (their izakaya stuff can be very good and my favorite lunch in Miami is their Porque Mt. Fuji). I feel the same about Yakko-San (good izakaya, OK sushi). For sushi - i.e., good fish & good rice - I will take Sushi Deli over any of them every time. (Haven't been to Maido).

Next Miami/SoBe Visit in 2 Weeks

Atmosphere at Niu is completely the opposite of Bazaar - small simple place with a short & sweet menu. But the food has some modern touches to it and is generally very well done.

I will second TP's suggestion of Alter in Wynwood which I think is one of the best restaurants in Miami right now.

Next Miami/SoBe Visit in 2 Weeks

If you're a fan of a traditional burger, the DB burger is not that. However, you may wish to consider the beef cheek burger at Tongue & Cheek. I am also a big fan of the Swine Burger at Swine in Coral Gables.

Only been once so far, but will heartily second the recommendation of Centro Taco - very excited by my first visit the day after their opening. I enjoyed just about everything that I tried but my favorite was a gordita with Haitian griots and pikliz. A little more on it here:

If you're staying downtown, and want something close, you may also want to try Niu Kitchen, a small Catalan place with great food (open lunch & dinner).

And if you're into tacos and on South Beach, you should also check out Taquiza on Collins & 15th.

Next Miami/SoBe Visit in 2 Weeks

I've had good meals at both La Mar and Quality Meats. Haven't been to Lure in quite some time, had one good meal there but was never inspired to go back. Don't know much and haven't heard much about Vintro Kitchen.

I went to Bodega for lunch, haven't done the back-of-the-house bar scene. I'm sure it's OK for 50YOs though so long as you're driving a Lambo. The tacos at Bodega were actually better than I expected, if a bit oversauced and overtopped.

The DB burger is sort of sui generis. I almost don't really think of it as a burger as it's so loaded with foie & braised short rib and truffle sauce. It's almost a little overboard for me, but is worth experiencing.

Best Chicken Sandwich

Fritanga Chicken Sandwich at Pincho Factory is a contender.
Also the "Nashville Hot" Fried Chicken Sandwich at Swine (lunch menu).
Chicken Bomb at Sub Serious.
(all in Coral Gables)
I've had hit or miss experiences with the Yardbird chicken biscuits.

2015 Miami Spice

Well I must have had fortuitous timing then. But unless the chef's working for free, aren't they all paid appearances?

Oolite Restaurant - New from Kris Wessel - SoBe near Lincoln Road

Most benchmarks I've seen say you should be spending 5-10% of gross sales on rent. So yeah, they'd have to be turning a lot of tables to cover that nut. If they had a check average of $50 per person (which may be aggressive if you're including lunch service), that would be 400 covers a day. Given the size of the place that wouldn't have been impossible, but I don't get the sense that they were doing anywhere near those kind of numbers.

Miami Beach Haitian

I miss Chez Rosie.

ETA: apparently Chez Rosie is still at it, but Kissimmee may be a bit out of my range:

Best Charcuterie

The uni toast at Seagrape was topped with lardo but I don't see it on the online menu any more.

2015 Miami Spice

Rumors of Chef Makoto's departure from his namesake restaurant are greatly exaggerated. I was there last week, and so was he.

Miami Beach Haitian

Not to knock Tap Tap, but it's hard to believe you can't get something that comes close to real Haitian food in Little Haiti at places Leela's or Naomi's, or in North Miami at Chez Madame John's (which looks like a disaster from outside lately though). I've also heard some good things about a place by Jackson Hospital called Manger Creole. Full disclosure: haven't been to Tap Tap in ages and haven't been at all to the places mentioned here, though I've occasionally heard good things about at all.

Restaurants Near American Airlines Arena

Sparky's > Pride & Joy

Brickell and Wynwood

I suspect the 5 course $65 tasting at Alter will be a much better meal (does not include wine pairings, but still).

I've not been to Tantalize and probably never will, it's the latest in a long string of South Beach resto-clubs. That's not a knock on Horacio Rivadero, who is a good chef, I've had a couple good meals at The District where he was last. But not remotely my kind of place. Rivadero is a disciple of Douglas Rodriguez who was king of Miami for a while with Yuca and then Ola. Rivadero's food is very much in the same Nuevo Latino style.

Brickell and Wynwood

There are some who would suggest the mere name "Toasted Bagelry" is a major red flag:

(I'm not among them, I generally have no problem with toasting a bagel, but that's also because 90% of the bagels in the universe aren't great bagels to start with).

But now I'm going to have to try it.

Brickell and Wynwood

I guess I'd heard Campania had closed, though there's been so many closings this summer it's hard to keep track. That spot has been cursed for years, but it's pretty remarkable to me that the Design District really hasn't been able to sustain a restaurant other than MGFD. (And now it's going to have Joel Robuchon opening 3!)

Yes on Myumi as well - which is an omakase only sushi truck in a lot in Wynwood next to gastroPod. That is a particular niche you have to be in the market for, but I was pretty impressed. Some thoughts from my first visit here:

Second to Mignonette too.

Brickell and Wynwood

Wynwood is in close proximity to the Design District but very different, especially these days. Design District is rapidly becoming home to a mind-boggling array of mind-boggling high-end shops - every high-end designer, watchmaker, etc. seems to feel the need to have a store there.

Wynwood is undergoing a pretty rapid shift from an arts district into a shopping district itself, but not as much on the high end of the market and more in the way of independent, crafty shops - and still has many of the art galleries that made it a destination in the first place, as well as the blocks and blocks of street art that draw the tourists and their cameras (and me, too, I'll confess).

As far as eating: Design District still has Michael's Genuine, which is still very good; as well as Harry's Pizzeria (more casual pizzeria), Cypress Room (more luxurious, white-tablecloth dining) and now Ella (a counter-service breakfast / lunch place) as well, all from the same chef (Michael Schwartz). I liked Oak Tavern but it's gone in the face of new development. I've been less impressed by MC Kitchen though it has its fans, and haven't been to Campania, though it's got a good pedigree (the folks from Sardinia on Miami Beach opened it). I've not been in some time, but Michelle Bernstein's Crumb on Parchment is good for casual breakfast / lunch. A little ways north, Mandolin Aegean Bistro is solid for simple Greek / Mediterranean food though the primarily outdoor seating is not always ideal in July.

In Wynwood proper, Alter is a very good new restaurant from chef Brad Kilgore (formerly at J&G Grill). Search this board for another post on Alter. For more casual, hit up Zak the Baker for excellent bread and a simple menu of toasts, sandwiches & salads, or the gastroPod for updated gourmet versions of old classics (burger, crispy chicken sandwich, etc.) and sometimes some really outstanding pastas too.

Midtown Miami sits right in between Wynwood and the Design District and also has several more spots. Of these my favorite is Proof Pizza & Pasta, whose simple name really doesn't do justice to how good the food is. The pizzas are very good but the pastas (made in-house) are pretty uniformly excellent. I'm also a fan of BlackBrick for somewhat modernized Chinese using responsibly sourced ingredients. I've not been to Sugarcane in quite some time but have had some good meals there.

I don't get to Brickell often because if you don't live (or stay) there it is often a nightmare to drive in and out of. But La Mar is good for higher end Peruvian, plus Edge Steak (in the Four Seasons), Momi Ramen, Naoe for a very expensive, omakase Japanese experience. There have been several recent openings in Brickell I've not yet tried.

ALTER (new Brad Kilgore place in Wynwood)

I get where that particular comparison comes from but I think there's plenty that distinguishes them. Shikany was a huge space, that someone poured a ton of money into, with a menu of ~$18 apps and ~$35 entrees (and a $180 10 course tasting menu). Alter's a pretty tight, bare bones space with about 45-seats, where an app & main together will set you back about $40, and nothing on the menu is over $30 other than a 5-course $65 tasting menu. Different places and different price point.

I also think there's a difference in the experience levels of their respective chefs. I just don't recall Shikany getting much hype, at least not here anyway.

Recommendations for Miami/SoBe

Always great to hear back from visitors and glad you had a good experience here.

ALTER (new Brad Kilgore place in Wynwood)

Honestly not sure either what "hype" there's been nor the reason for the negativity. I get lots of restaurant press releases every day - I've never received a single one for Alter. There have been the usual opening reports from the usual publications, but not much more than that. And a total of 5 Yelp reviews after 2 weeks open, which is a low number compared to many of the hype-beasts that will sometimes miraculously have a dozen before the place has even opened.

Maybe consider trying the place before predicting its closure?

Hottest Taco Joint in Miami

I've had the fish tacos at Matador Room a couple times now (during lunch service and dinner, one time fried and the other time grilled) and have been underwhelmed. I find they're overpowered by the very vinegar-y slaw that's served over them, which is kind of surprising because JG is usually the master of balancing acid and spice.

I preferred the mushroom and kale tacos. Haven't tried the chicken.

ALTER (new Brad Kilgore place in Wynwood)

I went earlier this week solo and did the tasting menu (with a couple add-ons). Pictures here:

(the bread was an add-on and the grouper cheek was a gift from the kitchen).

The soft egg w scallop mousse & gruyere seems to be the leading crowd favorite - and it's great - but I think maybe my favorite dish of the night was the grouper cheek (as an entree I'm sure you get a bigger portion than what you see in my pictures). The only course I found kind of underwhelming was the swordfish w charred avocado butter (the choice of fish varies from day to day, I think it's listed as pompano on the online menu).

If you're only 2, I think the tasting menu may be the way to go for a first visit. With 5 courses you'll probably still get to try more dishes than if you go a la carte (unless Mrs. CFB is a really good eater). The tasting menu must be ordered by the whole table, which is too bad because the best move would be one tasting menu and then fill in the gaps with the other person going a la carte.

Definitely order the bread as well and - pro tip - ask that it come during the egg course (prime dunking material).

Also don't sleep on the poussin, I've had Brad's chicken dishes on other occasions and they've been excellent.

Recommendations for Miami/SoBe

Dairy Belle. It's solid. A few pics here:

Recommendations for Miami/SoBe

Don't think the food trucks make it into South Beach. I suspect the closest they may get is a weekly gathering on Wednesdays along the 71st Street Causeway across from Pelican Harbor Marina.

Recommendations for Miami/SoBe

It would be helpful to know if you're planning to stay on South Beach or are willing to venture to the mainland (it's only 10-15 minutes away but some visitors prefer to stay on the beach).

On South Beach, yes to Pubbelly, and its sibling Pubbelly Sushi (the traditional sushi is not that exceptional but if you think of it more like a Japanese gastropub and order the prepared dishes (and the rolls - not usually my thing, but theirs are fun and tasty) it's a good meal. I know you discouraged Italian, but I think Macchialina serves some of the best food on the beach, in an environment like you're seeking. The Dutch is a hotel restaurant but draws some locals and has a menu that sounds like what you're looking for, plus good cocktails and a good (though very expensive) wine list. 27 Restaurant in the Freehand (restaurant sibling to the Broken Shaker cocktail bar) also does a great job of capturing local flavors, with a great atmosphere. You might also want to check out Tongue & Cheek on the south end of South Beach too.

If you're willing to venture off South Beach, yes to Michael's Genuine, and also some of my favorites of late: Mignonette (oyster bar / seafood place in Edgewater), Vagabond (contemporary place in a restored 50's hotel on Biscayne Blvd.), BlackBrick (sort of modernized Chinese with good ingredients in Midtown), Eating House (contemporary in Coral Gables), Proof (Italian in Midtown - their pastas are excellent). I've not yet been but you may also want to check out Alter, recently opened in Wynwood by Brad Kilgore (formerly chef at JG Grill in Bal Harbour). I went to a couple of their pre-opening pop-ups and am very excited to try it myself.

Cuban Restaurant in Coral Gables, South Miami or Kendall

I've not been but Havana Harry's on LeJeune is often recommended, especially for the chicken vaca frita. Malanga Cafe which is further down south toward Pinecrest claims to have the world's best pan con lechon - and I've been told it's actually pretty good.