Good food is always one of the cornerstones of a memorable vacation, and visitors to South Florida will find no shortage of it. There is an abundance of restaurants in Miami to choose from, ranging from casual to upscale with a diverse selection of food choices, such as fresh Florida seafood and authentic Cuban cuisine.
Miami restaurants are located throughout the city, and unless you are staying in one of the Miami Beach hotels or one of the vintage hotels in the Art Deco district, which are within walking distance of many restaurants, it's necessary to have other transportation, such as rental cars. Several areas of the city where good restaurants are found include South Beach, Little Havana, North Miami Beach, Coconut Grove, Key Biscayne, Coral Gables, and the downtown area.
The upscale South Beach area is known to have several establishments in contention for the unofficial title of best Miami restaurant. One such restaurant is Bongos Cuban Cafe, owned by singer Gloria Estefan and her husband, which serves both lunch and dinner in stylish surroundings. In the evening, the café becomes the place to be for live music and dancing until the early morning hours. Another upscale restaurant worth considering if you're looking for the best Miami restaurant is also in the Miami Beach area. Emeril's, owned by renowned chef Emeril Lagasse, is a fashionable hot spot restaurant for the see-and-be-seen crowd. It serves lunch and dinner daily.
Miami restaurants along the beaches are numerous; one of the most popular and famous is Joe's Stone Crab. Joe's has been in business since 1913 and is considered the best Miami restaurant for fresh stone crabs and key lime pie. It's a popular place for tourists and locals alike, and it is likely there will be a waiting period to be seated, as Joe's does not take reservations.
The South Beach area has more than 250 restaurants to choose from, offering menus that include Asian, Chinese, American, Italian, and Cuban cuisine and atmospheres ranging from fast food to fine dining. The large selection of Miami restaurants provides visitors with opportunities to try the many varieties of cuisine available while on vacation in the city, no matter how long their stay.
For excellent Cuban food in Miami, the Little Havana district is a good place to start. Steeped in Hispanic culture and heritage, you will experience the best in authentic cuisine in this lively neighborhood. From sidewalk cafes serving the freshest Cuban coffee, pastry, and pressed Cuban sandwiches to full-scale restaurants with mouth-watering pork and chicken dishes, the tastiest fare can be found in Little Havana. For a taste of Spain, Casa Juancho, located in Little Havana, serves a variety of Spanish entrees and has an impressive wine cellar with more than 450 vintage bottles available.
Visitors who are particularly interested in authentic Cuban food in Miami should consider Versailles. A favorite restaurant of the local residents, it boasts an informal and friendly atmosphere along with exceptional food and large portions. And while Little Havana is the primary area for Cuban food in Miami, another that's worth checking is the Lincoln Road Mall. With more than 40 restaurants to choose from along the open-air pedestrian mall, Cuban food at the Yuca Restaurant is on the top of the list. Yuca serves lunch and dinner along with salsa dancing at the upstairs nightclub.