Headed to Miami for this Sunday’s Super Bowl—or just for a mid-winter getaway? We’ve scoured Garden & Gun’s past coverage to present some of the best places to eat, drink, and visit in one of the South’s most cosmopolitan coastal cities.
What to Eat
El Rey de las Fritas perfectly combines a classic American tailgate meal with Miami’s Cuban cultural heritage for its signature dish, the frita. The frita takes a classic burger patty to the next level by adding a swath of ropa vieja–style tomato sauce and an overflowing mound of thin-cut fries, all between a soft, doughy bun. The frita itself hearkens back to a sixties street vendor tradition, but in the words of G&G contributing editor John T. Edge, “What could be more American than remaking the burger and fries combo into a more portable dish by stuffing the fries under the bun crown?”
Stone crab season runs from October to May, making Super Bowl weekend as good a time as any to gorge on the sweet and salty Southern delicacies. With a century-plus of crustacean preparation under its belt, Joe’s Stone Crab and the generations of founder Joe Weiss’s family who run it are Miami’s authority on the lobster-like meat. Here’s our primer on mastering a trip to Joe’s.
Fried Chicken and Waffles
Yardbird Southern Table & Bar takes staple flavors of the American South and a farm-to-table ethos to produce dishes such as its fried chicken served with cheddar waffles, spiced watermelon, and bourbon maple syrup—recommended by the Florida chef Kenny Gilbert on our Fried Chicken Bucket List. The James Beard–nominated, award-winning chicken chain has also become known for its extensive bourbon menu.
Where to Drink
A Hotel Hideaway
Back in 2017, G&G contributor Wright Thompson let us in on a little secret, “the kind of secret that most people guard like my aunt Becky’s baked beans recipe: the location and name of the best unhyped and basically unknown day-drinking spot in the country.” That spot is Shuckers, a dockside hotel bar and grill in a Best Western in North Bay Village, Florida, near Miami Beach. Whether you are a hotel guest or not, Shuckers (with its swaths of TVs) makes for a great place to catch the game, have a few ice-cold brews, and pleasantly forget the second half, if need be.
A Rum Runner’s Paradise
Sugarcane Raw Bar Grill in midtown Miami pays homage to its namesake with one of the largest rum selections on the market. G&G featured the tapas joint in this December 2012/January 2013 Miami City Portrait, lauding it for having “perfected the it’s-always-a-party-here warehouse atmosphere.” Do bacon-wrapped dates, duck confit on waffles, goat cheese croquettes, raw oysters, and cocktails with fresh-squeezed juice sound good right now? We thought so.
A “No Nonsense” Kind of Place
Neighborhood bar. Straightforward. No nonsense. The slogan of Miami’s picturesque Lost Boy pub tells you everything you need to know: This place dodges the gimmicks to give patrons what they want—cold beer, classic cocktails, and a rustic-chic atmosphere that begs for a martini. Complete with cushy leather bar stools, ornamental rugs, books, and brick walls covered in antlers and presidential portraiture, Lost Boy has become a beloved hang-out to locals and a must-visit for the rest of us.
What to Do
Dance the Night Away in Little Havana
Live music lovers can immerse themselves in the local culture at Little Havana’s beloved Hoy Como Ayer. This bar/lounge honors the community’s Latin heritage with a variety of local musical acts, dancing, and mojitos to spare.
Get Lost in an Oasis
That Miami City Portrait also called out the Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden, an eighty-three-acre refuge that is home to hundreds of plant species from across the globe, many of which were transplanted into the heart of Miami by the garden’s namesake, Dr. David Fairchild. More than just a lush botanical attraction, the Fairchild is devoted to protecting biodiversity through research, conservation, and education.
Explore Miami’s Design Side
From art deco hotels to Art Basel, Miami’s design side deserves a trip in and of itself. Here, the interior designer and erstwhile Miami resident Angie Hranowsky shares all of her favorite places to soak in Miami’s stylish past and present.