5 Tasting Menus Taking Over Miami
From Japanese omakase to 10-course epicurean extravaganzas, these popular restaurants are serving up a steaming helping of culinary adventure in the Magic City.
A Stylish Stubborn Seed Dish. Credit: Stubborn Seed
Over in South Beach’s trendy South of Fifth enclave, this stylish spot from Top Chef winner Jeremy Ford has a casual yet sophisticated air, attracting locals and foodies in the know.
The 70-seat restaurant brings you two tasting menus (five and eight courses) with offerings that change daily. Call ahead and ask what’s for dinner — you won’t be disappointed with indulgent options like housemade bread with garbanzo-chili dip, chicken with truffle butter and gnocchi, and wagyu rib-eye with glazed turnips.
Save room for dessert. The snickerdoodles stuffed with chocolate-hazelnut spread and served warm are a must-try. Take the experience up a notch by requesting the wine pairings.
NAOE Miami Chef/Owner Kevin Cory. Credit: NAOE Miami
No round-up of tasting menus would be complete without this Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star Japanese restaurant tucked away in Miami’s upscale Brickell Key.
Chef/owner Kevin Cory surprises and delights with exquisitely prepared dishes and humble hospitality. Put yourself in the talented toque’s capable hands with his omakase menu, a seasonally driven selection of fresh fish (sourced both from Japan and local waters) prepared, however, the chef sees fit. Each meal includes a four-item bento box followed by numerous rounds of nigiri and sweets.
The intimate eatery seats only eight diners at a time. Couple these quaint confines with NAOE Miami’s attentive service and skillful preparations and you’ll feel like the ultimate VIP.
Café La Trova’s Paella Croquetas. Credit: Café La Trova
Café La Trova
A newcomer from renowned bartender Julio Cabrera and James Beard Award-winning chef Michelle Bernstein, this lively Cuban eatery is taking Miami’s famed Little Havana neighborhood by storm. Get a taste of the café’s flavorful fare with its recently debuted prix fixe, family-style dinner menu (available Mondays to Thursdays through the fall).
Whet your appetite with empanadas surtidas stuffed with savory steak and roasted squash or paella croquetas with saffron aioli. For the entrée, you can’t go wrong with arroz con pollo (chicken and rice) or the day’s fresh catch prepared simply with coconut sticky rice. End on a sweet note with bread pudding a la Latina.
The festive atmosphere is only enhanced by mojitos and live tunes performed by classic Trova musicians.
Monkitail’s Izakaya. Credit: Monkitail
Head about 35 minutes north of Miami for this contemporary take on Japanese fare at The Diplomat Beach Resort in Hollywood, Florida. The moody dining room from celebrity chef Michael Schulson is a modern izakayawith shareable small plates and sushi that already has local foodies coming back for more.
Leave it to Schulson to devise a modern, do-it-yourself tasting menu that hits the spot. Mix and match 10 courses plus dessert to author your own culinary journey with dishes like edamame dumplings with truffle, duck scrapple bao, and red snapper sashimi with ponzu.
After, stop in for a nightcap and tunes at adjacent cocktail lounge Nokku.
Selections from Boulud Sud. Credit: Boulud Sud
If you’re looking for a powerhouse, prix fixe lunch between business meetings in downtown Miami, head to this Mediterranean dining room from acclaimed French chef Daniel Boulud.
Indulge in three courses, including your choice of daily changing dessert selection. Start with a refreshing Andalusian gazpacho, followed by grilled skirt steak paired with a mint-fig cauliflower tabbouleh or, for a lighter midday option, seared branzino with confit fennel.