Tuesday, August 8, 2017

La LeGGenda Pizzeria Napoletana (South Beach)

As my longtime readers know, I am a huge pizza fan. Unfortunately, South Florida is loaded with awful pizza and I've tried my fair share of it while searching for great pies. And make no mistake, there are some very impressive pizzerias in town now.  Well, you can add another one to that list.  To the top of the list!  

La Leggenda opened recently on the eastern side of Espanola way on South Beach.  Behind the pizza oven, which was imported from Naples where he owns another pizzeria, is Giovanni "La LeGGenda" Gagliardi.  Yes, he is a pizza legend and world champion of Neapolitan pies.  Believe the hype.  

When I posted my updated Best Pizza Rankings a couple of months ago I indicated that La LeGgenda had just opened and I suspected that they would be ranked very high on my next list. That was because Giovanni was previously at Ironside Pizza and I ranked them second in South Florida while he was there.  His pizza is that good.  The sauce, cheese, dough, crust and overall flavors all excel.  The non pizza items I've tried have been very good too.

If you are a pizza fan like me you need to run to La LeGGenda.  Their menus is not posted online so I posted the pizza menu below.   

Margherita STG - Best Traditional Pizza in the world Award -  Pizza World Championship, Parma 2012.  Mozzarella di bufala campaign DOP, San Marzano tomato sauce and basil.

Pasta E Palate - pasta mist with potatoes and smoked provoke di buffalo campana DOP

224 EspaƱola Way, Miami Beach, FL 33139

Monday, August 7, 2017

Shimuja Ramen Bar - Miami & Davie

Ramen fans of Miami I have a must do spot for you.  I've been several times over the past few months and everything has been good to great with no exception.  I posted some shots on my Instagram feed but did not write a post about it because it was only operating as a pop up inside the popular Brickell bar Baby Jane.  However, word on the street is that it will have a permanent home at Baby Jane moving forward.  Additionally, they are in the process of opening a second location in Davie, Fl.  

I'm not a ramen expert but I enjoy it and have had my share over the years. Shimuja is up there with the best in town.  Flavors are strong and well balanced.  Yes, it's super hot in Miami right now but you will not regret taking down chef Keiichi Maemura ramen along with his other dishes that are equally as good.  Plus, you can cool down with one of Baby Jane's cocktails.  

Shimuja opened as a ten seat ramen shop in Kagoshima, Japan in 2011.  They'e expanded to three locations in Kagoshima and won Best Ramen in 2015.  Award winning ramen in Miami, sold!

 If you haven't been, go.  If you have been, you know.  

Pork dumplings in shiro shoyu soup with scallions, sesame seeds, and spicy sesame oil are a must get dish every visit.  The dumplings are great and the broth is full of flavor.

Pictured above is the Kagoshima Special Ramen which is $5.00 more than the other ramen on the menu but it was worth the price. The Kagoshima Special is made with wavy thin noodles with a thick pork broth, topped with scallions, sprouts, extra kikurage mushrooms, seared half-boiled egg, burdock, cabbage, carrots, seaweed, and extra chasu pork.  

Also available are Tonkotsu and Shiro Shoyu Ramen at $15.00

Cucumber in sesame salt sauce is a great way to get your palate ready while you wait for that ramen.

Another winner is their Chasu Bowl and a great value at $7.00.  Rice topped with Chashu pork, “kinshi” egg, lettuce, scallions, seaweed, “Kabayaki” sauce, and Sichuan pepper.  

I was so excited to try  the Mentai Bowl that I forgot to take a shot.  Same with the Chasu Pork buns which may be the best in town.  

The Mentai Bowl features rice topped with spicy cod raw, “kinshi” egg, scallions, seaweed, and spicy mayo.

Unfortunately, I have not tried the Japanese-style Fried Chicken which is marinated in special sauce.  I hear it is excellent too.