Monday, October 17, 2011
Tiers of Excellence - Best Restaurants Miami (updated)
The following tiers feature the best restaurants in Miami.
TIER ONE - The best of the best in Miami.
Bourbon Steak-Much more than a steakhouse. Chef Fenton is the most underrated chef in town. Best service and best wine list around.
Azul - Cutting edge cuisine by Chef Huff. Should be at top of special occasion list.
Michy's- The Queen of Miami. Always delivers a great meal.
NAOE- Great daily changing bento box followed by mind and wallet blowing sushi. 100% omakase so leave your reading glasses at home. Slow pace so leave your watch too.
Michael's Genuine Food & Drink-The King of Miami. Great daily specials keep menu "fresh". Don't miss dessert or Sunday brunch.
db Bistro Moderne- One word-Boulud
Hakkasan- Weekend dim sum lunch is a must do.
Makoto- Welcome addition to the Sushi scene.
Red Light- Tier one caliber food. Slow service and setting only drawback.
Yakko-San- Go with a group and order away. Look for daily specials, pass on new sushi options.
Sushi Deli-Special place for sushi fans. They close early so check times.
Altamare- Great service and consistently good food. South Beach's finest.
Area 31- Make the effort to go. Chef Reidt has skills.
Timo- Diverse menu with something for everyone.
Sra. Martinez- Go early and stay after dinner so you can enjoy their great cocktails.
Sakaya Kitchen-Don't be fooled by this fast food-esque place. Addictive food is served.
Macaluso's-Best meatballs in Miami and not even close. Fahgettaboudit!!
Chow Down Grill- Chef Josh's specials board is the play.
Nemesis Urban Bistro-Chef Micah's world travels on full display. Sit back and enjoy the journey.
Sustain- Great affordable wine list and cocktails. Keeping it real.
Tudor House - Pork belly Cuban sandwich. You're welcome.
Sugarcane Raw Bar- Deceiving name with ambitious menu that delivers the goods. Lively scene.
Pubbelly- Fun place with fun menu.
TIER OF THEIR OWN (non traditional tier featuring great unique spots)
Gastropod- Miami's best food truck. Chef Jeremiah is the real deal.
Shake Shack- That is a tasty burger.
Phuc Yea- Vietnamese inspired pop-up in downtown Miami. Phucin good. Run before it's pop over.
Crumb on Parchment- Chef Michy's delicious breakfast/lunch only spot in the design district. Don't miss Mrs. Bernstein's cakes.
Kings County Pizza-Best NY slice in Miami. Sicilian and grandma pies even better. Don't miss the baked ziti.
Brana Food Group - Chef Brana serves tier one caliber food on Sat. nights from home. Must do for food fans.
Joe's Stone Crab - Miami institution. Fresh stoney's from Oct. 15- May 15. Save $$ via takeout counter.
Chef Philip Ho - Newly opened spot in Sunny Isles featuring outstanding dim sum from former Setai dumpling chef. Push cart service during lunch daily. May move into tier three next go round.
Honorable Mention- Meat Market, BLT Steak, Petit Rouge.
Places that I need to get back to because of new chef- Sushi Samba (Bloise)
Places that I suspect are tier worthy but I have not tried - Palme d'Or, Zuma, The Local, The Forge, Setai, Osterio del Teatro, Route 9 (one lunch), Whisk Gourmet, Mister Collins (one very good brunch)
Places that were tier worthy at one point but have dropped off because I have not been in a long time, Nobu, Bond St, Sardinia, Scarpetta, Blue Door.
Coming soon - The Dutch and Barceloneta.