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4days in Coconut Grove any sugg?

A list of my favorites in the Grove would have to include Panorama at the Sonesta Bayfront Hotel for its delicious Peruvian food and beautiful view of Biscayne Bay, and Jaguar for its pan-Latin cuisine and great assortment of ceviches. Also worth trying are Peacock Garden Cafe, Timo's at the Villa Mayfair, and La Bottega. And if you're in the mood for a burger, you won't find any better than at Lokal (27 points from Zagat – fourth highest of any restaurant in Miami). Enjoy your stay in the Grove!

New Orleans: A First-Timer's Dining Diary

Hard to say, as any kind of bread pudding appeals to me, especially when bathed in a whiskey sauce. But if I had to pick the best from my visit, it would be Commander's Palace. Or K-Paul's.

Oct 13, 2009
copydoc in New Orleans

New Orleans: A First-Timer's Dining Diary

Be prepared, the place is tiny...although they do have a few tables for outdoor dining, weather permitting.

Oct 13, 2009
copydoc in New Orleans

New Orleans: A First-Timer's Dining Diary

Just returned from my first visit to New Orleans. Six days and five pounds later, I'm happy to pass along my thoughts for anyone who's interested. Special thanks to all you chowhounds for your recommendations – there were so many places I didn't get to try, I'll just have to come back another time!

(Note: I didn't get out to breakfast every day, as there were free breakfasts at Embassy Suites, but I did manage to make it to Cafe du Monde a few times.)

DAY 1 LUNCH – LUCY'S RETIRED SURFERS BAR & GRILL
http://www.lucysretiredsurfers.com

Right around the corner from where we were staying at Embassy Suites, Lucy's was a fun and funky spot with (as its name implies) a California surfing theme. I enjoyed grilled Jamaican jerk chicken appetizer (4 skewers) and a large, tasty Juicy Lucy Burger with blue cheese and bacon. I could see this would be a fun happy hour hangout.

DAY 1 DINNER – EMERIL'S
http://www.emerils.com/restaurant/1/E...

Also around the corner from our hotel, Emeril's offered delicious, well-prepared food complemented by warm, inviting ambiance and top-notch service. I had fried oysters to start, grilled drum fish for my entree and blueberry bread pudding for dessert. Yum!

DAY 2 LUNCH – RIO MAR
http://riomarseafood.activepixel.com

Another nearby spot and – a pleasant surprise – a tapas-only menu for lunch Monday through Friday. I had ceviche (drum fish with mango, red onion, mint and lime juice), roasted piquillo peppers and garlic potatoes. Everything was delicious, and all for only $12!

DAY 2 DINNER – BON TON CAFE
http://thebontoncafe.com

Warm, friendly ambiance and service, with some of the best seafood of my visit. I had the sauteed redfish topped 1/2 and 1/2 with fresh lump crabmeat and crawfish (the menu offers one or the other, but you can get both if you ask) served with a small veggie casserole on the side. Dessert was their famous bread pudding with whiskey sauce and, by request, a scoop of praline crunch ice cream. (Overkill, maybe, but it was GOOD!

)

DAY 3 BREAKFAST – CAFE DU MONDE
http://www.cafedumonde.com

A glass of fresh-squeezed OJ, a large cafe au lait, an order of beignets and great people-watching...what more do you need?

DAY 3 LUNCH – MURIEL'S
http://www.muriels.com

Hot and tired after hoofing around the French Quarter all morning, I stopped in for a light lunch of turtle soup and Muriel's house salad. I thoroughly enjoyed my meal. The sherry-spiked soup was rich and flavorful, and the house salad – mixed baby greens with shaved red onions and peppery goat cheese and a sweet/tart pomegranate dressing – was just what I wanted. The ambiance was lovely and the service courteous and professional.

DAY 3 DINNER – RALPH & KACOO'S
ralphandkacoos.com

Someone in our group had recommended this, and it was the only disappointment of our visit. Service was painfully slow, and the food, although good, did not live up to its billing and wasn't worth the wait. I had the Shrimp Trawl dinner, which consisted of fried shrimp, fried stuffed shrimp, shrimp stew and shrimp au gratin (the promised boiled shrimp was missing). Would have had dessert but we were at the two-hour-plus mark and ready to move on. Wish we had gone to one of my other choices instead: Cochon, Mr. B's or Palace Cafe.

DAY 4 BREAKFAST – CAFE DU MONDE
Couldn't get excited about the free breakfast at Embassy Suites, so back to Cafe du Monde for more cafe au lait and beignets.

DAY 4 LUNCH – GREEN GODDESS
greengoddessnola.com

A tiny hole in the wall tucked away on a little alley in the French Quarter, Green Goddess offered a creative and unexpected menu with delicious food to match. I had the South Indian Savory Lentil Pancake topped with shrimp, and a side of made-from-scratch sweet potato biscuits served with honey butter and pepper jelly. Friendly service and coffee-house ambiance.

DAY 4 DINNER – PIE PIZZA & PASTA
http://www.yelp.com/biz/pie-pizza-and...

Another nice surprise, just around the corner from our hotel. After enjoying so much creole and cajun food over the last few days I needed something different, and this place fit the bill. I had a large pizza with alligator and duck sausage atop creole tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese. It was one of the better pizzas I've had in recent years.

DAY 5 BREAKFAST – CAFE DU MONDE
When in Rome...

DAY 5 LUNCH – MOTHER'S
http://www.mothersrestaurant.net/

After walking around all morning, we stopped in for an early (11:15) lunch of some highly recommended Po Boys. Good thing we got there when we did, as the line was out the door and down the street by the time we left an hour later. Were these the best Po Boys in town? Can't say, as I didn't have anything else to compare it to. But I enjoyed my Ferdi Special with a side of fries.

DAY 5 DINNER – K-PAUL'S LOUISIANA KITCHEN
http://kpauls.com

Started with the Shrimp & Corn Maque Choux, followed by pan-fried rabbit tenderloin served with a shrimp jambalaya, then bread pudding with hard sauce. Everything was delicious, and this proved to be a great spot for our final dinner in The Big Easy. Service was warm and friendly, and ambiance was comfortable and cozy.

DAY 6 LUNCH – COMMANDER'S PALACE
http://www.commanderspalace.com

Still full from Mother's and K-Paul's the day before, I couldn't even think about breakfast... even if it was on the house at our hotel. We spent several hours wandering around the Garden District (beautiful, but would have been even nicer if it hadn't been so hot and humid!) followed by a nice, relaxing lunch at Commander's Palace before heading off to the airport. I had the trio of soups (turtle, shrimp & mirliton and creole gumbo), followed by a sugarcane grilled beef dish served with black beans, caramelized onions and plantains – something I might expect to find back home in Miami. I washed this down with a couple of 25¢ martinis (at this price, it was cheaper than drinking iced tea!) and finished with a bread pudding souffle served with warm whiskey cream. YUM! Service was friendly and professional, and the ambiance was lovely.

Oct 11, 2009
copydoc in New Orleans

Quintessentially Chicago restaurants?

Thanks, nsxtasy – I'll check these out, as well as the ones chicgail recommended earlier.

Oct 07, 2008
copydoc in Chicago Area

Quintessentially Chicago restaurants?

I know there are thousands of possibilities to choose from in Chicago. I'm trying to put together a list of ideas for fellow conferees, so the field is wide open and I purposefully avoided specifying a particular cuisine, style or price range.

Perhaps a better question to the board would be this: without regard to cuisine or price, what are your top ten personal favorite places to eat in Chicago? Chicgail offered some good choices – I'd be interested to see yours.

Thanks.

Oct 03, 2008
copydoc in Chicago Area

Quintessentially Chicago restaurants?

I'll be coming to town for a conference Nov. 7-9 and am looking for suggestions on quintessentially Chicago restaurants – a Top 10 list of "not to be missed" spots for those interested in soaking up some local flavor. Could be any cuisine or price range. What do you recommend?

Sep 29, 2008
copydoc in Chicago Area

Sunday Brunch in Miami Arts District?

Thanks for your suggestions. Anything you know of that's closer (within walking distance, maybe) of the Arts Center?

Mar 10, 2008
copydoc in Florida

One night in Miami/MB, food ambiance mix

Blue Door is a good choice for food, service and ambiance. Redfish Grill (Matheson Hammock Park) is way off the beaten path, but it has good food and, weather permitting, it's very pretty sitting outside on a March evening. Make sure you reserve a table outside, though.

Mar 10, 2008
copydoc in Florida

Sunday Brunch in Miami Arts District?

Any recommendations for a nice Sunday brunch before a show at the Performing Arts Center?

Mar 10, 2008
copydoc in Florida

BEST MEXICAN FOOD IN MIAMI? ANYONE

Have you tried Rosa Mexicano at Mary Brickell Village? I've found the menu more original and the quality of food better than at other Mexican restaurants I've been to in Miami.

Mar 10, 2008
copydoc in Florida

Visit to Coconut Grove - Non-tourist restaurants?

Agree with many of the recommendations below. Not mentioned in any of the posts is Berries, a nice neighborhood restaurant next door to Las Culebrinas. If you're willing to make a 10-minute drive south from Coconut Grove, you might want to check out Redfish Grill – good food in a unique (and somewhat hard-to-find) waterfront setting, tucked away in Matheson Hammock Park.

http://www.redfishgrill.net

Ginger Grove at the Mayfair House Hotel (a short walk from the Sonesta) is good, too.

Enjoy your stay!

Has Taverna Opa gone downhill?

I couldn't say, because I haven't been to Taverna Opa recently, but I do recall seeing a strip along the bottom of their billboard on I-95 promoting franchise opportunities. I may be wrong but hat, to me, implies a focus on expansion and profits at the expense of quality food and service.

Jan 06, 2008
copydoc in Florida

Maison d'Azur Lunch

I was one of the five hounds who lunched recently at Maison d'Azur. I started my meal with a cup of Vichysoisse ($7). The chilled potato-leek soup, which I've enjoyed many times in various restaurants, was the only real disappointment in my meal. One of my dining companions thought it was delicious, but I was surprised by its consistency (a bit thin), its color (green – our server explained it was the chive-infused oil added to the soup) and its flavor (slightly tangy and lacking the sweet cream flavor of Vichysoisse I've enjoyed elsewhere).

Although I was tempted by the Lobster Salad ordered by one of my fellow hounds, I think I lucked out with Le Sandwich au Poulet, or Chicken Sandwich ($14). A fresh, chewy baguette was layered with thick slices of fresh, moist roasted chicken, sliced tomato and avocado, lettuce and herb mayonnaise. I thought the flavor of the sandwich was excellent and the portion size generous. The sandwich was served with perfectly cooked, fresh-cut French Fries – crispy on the outside, moist and chewy on the inside – and a simple green salad (tossed with a light vinaigrette and too much salt) that was more decoration than substance.

I had a taste of a fellow hound's Fish Soup and agree with the assessment about it being too heavily salted. I sampled the Duck Confit Sandwich and, although it didn't look all that impressive, I enjoyed the flavor of the duck, grilled onions and rye bread – a French interpretation of a Reuben, perhaps? I sampled the Lobster Salad and thought it was good but not remarkable, and was glad I had ordered something different. I also had a taste of another hound's dessert – Profiteroles – and thought it was a fairly pedestrian version of this typically French dessert.

Maison d'Azur's setting in the beautifully renovated Angler's Hotel made for a nice place to spend a couple of hours over a leisurely lunch. Our server was friendly but, as noted, service was slow – perhaps because she was juggling an office holiday lunch with 8 or 9 guests at another table. Had I been in a hurry to get back to the office that day, I would have started stressing even before my sandwich had arrived.

I don't know if the overall value was worth the high prices at Maison d'Azur. If I did return, it would only be for an encore of my Sandwich au Poulet. I did enjoy meeting some new hounds, and thank Lunch Hound, our instigator and organizer, for making the time and effort to get us all together. Looking forward to our next lunch, wherever that may take us...

Jan 01, 2008
copydoc in Florida

Miami: recommended caterer?

I've been to a few events catered by Joy Wallace and have always been impressed with their food and service.

http://www.joycater.com/

Dec 31, 2007
copydoc in Florida

where to buy fresh fish off the boat

I liked their old location on Watson Island better but Casablanca still has the freshest fish at very reasonable prices. They also took over what used to be Joe's Seafood restaurant next door – nothing like eating fresh seafood right on the river!

Jul 27, 2007
copydoc in Florida

Anyone tried Poblano?

I've been meaning to check out this new Mexican restaurant in South Miami and was wondering if anyone has a report. Is it true they only serve beer and wine? I'm not wild about wine-based margaritas...

Jul 27, 2007
copydoc in Florida

Miami- Wheres the best Indian?!?!

I see that The Mint Leaf will be coming to Coral Gables – part of the respected Woodlands hotels and restaurants chain in London.

Breakfast in Delray

On Federal Highway between Delray and Boynton Beach is Ellie's 50s Diner – lots of breakfast items on the menu. Cash only, though.

Feb 24, 2007
copydoc in Florida

Going to Sanibel

Spanky, I didn't know there were any other Leon Redbone fans around here – enjoy the show! It took us about 3 hours to drive from Miami to Sanibel, so it should be about the same from Hallandale. The new bridge/causeway to Sanibel is still under construction, I think, so there may be a bottleneck but it shouldn't be too bad. Once on the island, head straight for the Mucky Duck on Captiva (a 10-minute drive north) – it's a casual spot right on the beach with decent, reasonably priced food and a gorgeous view of the sunset. You can get drinks at the outdoor bar while waiting for your table. Have fun!

Feb 24, 2007
copydoc in Florida

Ethnic lunch spots on Upper West Side?

Thanks for all the good suggestions. We ended up going to Saigon Grill, a Vietnamese restaurant on Amsterdam between 90th and 91st, and had a great lunch. From the crowds, it seems to be a popular spot, and I'd definitely recommend it.

Feb 11, 2007
copydoc in Manhattan

driving to the keys

Previous posts have revealed a few dissatisfied diners, but we like to stop for lunch at Islamorda Fish Company (on the water, behind Bass Pro Shops/Worldwide Sportsman in Islamorada). In Key West, breakfast at Ricky's Blue Heaven (Thomas & Petronia streets) is a must. Haven't been to Louie's Backyard recently but we've had dinner there before and loved the setting and the food.

Feb 07, 2007
copydoc in Florida

Ethnic lunch spots on Upper West Side?

Will be in NY this weekend and am looking for a good spot for lunch on Sunday – open to ideas for any and all cuisines, as long as the quality is good.

Feb 07, 2007
copydoc in Manhattan

Miami Near MIA -- Party of 15-18?

Try Graziano's – they have two locations but the one in Coral Gables will be closer for you, certainly within 15-20 minutes. Order wisely and you may be able to do it for $30pp without drinks.

Feb 02, 2007
copydoc in Florida

Five Guys Famous Burgers and Fries Tampa

Five Guys will be opening soon in Miami, at the new Midtown complex, between Marshalls and Target. I've heard good things about them from friends and family up north, and I look forward to checking them out.

Feb 02, 2007
copydoc in Chains

Downtown Miami late dinner for SF

If you're in the mood for Cuban, you're just a 10-minute drive from Las Culebrinas, a Cuban-Spanish restaurant on 27th Avenue just off US 1 in Coconut Grove. Venture a few blocks west along the Miami River from where you're staying (drive, don't walk) and you'll find some decent Cuban seafood joints like Garcia's or Casablanca (formerly Joe's Seafood restaurant, not to be confused with Joe's Stone Crab).

Jan 31, 2007
copydoc in Florida

WHERE TO STOP FOR LUNCH IN ISLAMORADA OR PLANTATION KEY

I like Islamorada Fish Company and Morada Bay, too. There's also the Lorelei close by, and Atlantic's Edge at Cheeca Lodge.

Jan 17, 2007
copydoc in Florida

Great NY restaurant for anniversary dinner?

American or French, preferably, and someplace that's not a noisy, crowded zoo.

Jan 13, 2007
copydoc in Manhattan

Dinners in Coral Gables ~$40

Cafe St. Michelle is very nice, and within walking distance.

Jan 11, 2007
copydoc in Florida

Suggest us restaurants to try with 15 month old kid near Miami Beach

Try Big Pink, on Collins between 2nd and 3rd Streets

Jan 11, 2007
copydoc in Florida