I hope everyone had a wonderful Memorial Day weekend! While we stayed in town for the holiday, I did want to share a bit about one of our most recent getaways. This past March, Chris & I flew to Florida for a long weekend to celebrate our three year anniversary. We are building a lot of vacations around baseball these days, mostly to help Chris achieve his life goal of going to a game at every MLB baseball stadium. Since he also had not been to a preseason spring training game before, we decided that a Florida trip would be a great way to knock that out and get some beach/warm weather time as well. (Note: I had actually been to spring training several times before this year, since I also come from a baseball-loving family!)
I am a big fan of José Andrés, so it was kind of a given that we would try out his restaurant, The Bazaar, along the South Beach strip downtown. What I did not expect about Miami were the prices. I realize that I have not spent time in Miami since I was 9 — but we live right outside of DC and there are a lot of expensive restaurants around here. However, this felt stressful. It was difficult seeing items on the menu that I know and love from José’s restaurants in DC, but marked up!
We started with one of our favorite José tapas, the Croquetas de Pollo. (Note: These are $8 in DC, but $12 in Miami.) The Kueh Pai Ti was highly recommended by the waiter and described on the menu as “Singapore’s favorite street food,” including shrimp, peanuts, and chili sauce. Yum!
The Butifarra Flauta turned out to be mini meat sandwiches with alioli and peppers. The dish was very delicious and also helped us feel more full. My favorite tapa was probably the South Beach Chips, presented in a shoe like the croquetas, with yuca, plaintains, tamarind, and yogurt dip! I personally like to dip tortilla chips in plain Greek yogurt (since it tastes like sour cream!) for a snack, but have always felt a little weird doing so. I guess I’m not that strange after all.
We did enjoy our meal, but were a little on edge with each tapas choice as we envisioned the bill adding up. I also was not prepared for the glamour of South Beach at night! I dressed myself in black leggings and a silk summery shirt for dinner. We arrived at the strip, and I regretted not wearing a cocktail dress and heels! I will be better prepared next time.
For some of our other outings in Miami, we heavily relied on a guide from Anna Carl at The Yellow Table: Winter Getaway Guide to Miami. On our first night, we had the BEST late night dinner at Michael’s Genuine, more off the beaten path in the up-and-coming art district… and the prices were much better too! My favorite plate there was the stracciatella, a burrata dish with heirloom tomatoes (which were so fresh and lovely!), basil, olive oil, and fleur de sel. I have been on a major burrata kick ever since! We also grabbed lunch and smoothies at La Sandwicherie to take down to the beach the next day. Finally, after our dinner at The Bazaar, we had drinks in the roofless courtyard lounge at The Setai. Absolutely peaceful and breathtaking. I would recommend all of these places.
I am really excited to go back to Miami at some point, but would approach it differently next time. Chris and I love beaches, baseball, and cities, so Miami is a great fit for us. I think we will stick more to restaurants outside of South Beach on our next trip, and maybe head there just for drinks to get a taste of the scene without breaking the bank. (I will also have to remember to glam up a bit more next time we go!)