I've lived in Miami my entire life, other than the four years I moved away for college. When it was time to graduate, I had a few options. Originally, New York City was the place for me. However, after spending four summers in the Big Apple, I realized that maybe I could be happy living somewhere else. I took a few steps back and thought about my hometown. I was fortunate to grow up in a neighborhood where the beach was a two minute walk from my house, the sun was basically always shining and there's always something delicious to eat.
I am so happy with my decision to move back home. So far, I've discovered some pretty amazing places and my friends and family can definitely agree.
Today, I am so excited to share with you a list on which I've worked hard and long.
If you have plans to travel to Miami soon or are dreaming of a vacation here in the future, below are the local food spots I recommend you check out.
Where: 2188 NE 123rd St, North Miami, FL
What to Get: Chicken and Cheese, Sweet Potato Fries and Zinger Tea (ALWAYS add Kenny's secret Sun Sauce.)
Why: Everyone from Miami has been eating here for what seems like forever. An unassuming gem, I find myself picking up or eating in at least once a week. Friends who visit and try it text me all the time saying they're craving HCTS.
When: Perfect for lunch. The leftovers are the BEST hangover cure. Portions are filling, so be prepared.
Where: Biscayne Inn, 6730 Biscayne Blvd. Miami, FL
What to Get: Latkes
Why: A hidden spot on Biscayne, this tiny restaurant knows how to whip up a delicious meal. Order anything. Really, you cannot go wrong.
When: The perfect dinner date spot
Where: 1424 20th St. Miami Beach, FL
What to Get: Big Eye Tuna Roll, Snow Crab Roll, Yellow Tail Roll
Why: Your tastebuds will be thanking you for days even though it's a bit pricey.
When: My favorite post-Flywheel meal and great spot to grab a drink at the bar with girlfriends and then pig out.
Where: 7580 Northeast 4th Ct, Miami, FL
What to Get: Nutella Pizza for Dessert
Why: This has been a secret spot for my friend Rachael and me. More and more people are discovering how great the pizza tastes and how cool the atmosphere is. We wanted to keep it on the down low but it's too amazing not to share.
When: Make a reservation for dinner and sit with your date on the deck.
Where: 1930 Bay Road, Miami Beach, FL
What to Get: Artichoke, Eggplant
Why: You can never go wrong with pizza.
When: Lunch or dinner, sit outside and enjoy the neighborhood.
Books & Books Cafe
Where: 927 Lincoln Road, Miami Beach, FL, other locations available
What to Get: Avocado Salsa and the Qinoua Salad
Why: Right on Lincoln Road, this spot is great for people watching and the food is unreal.
When: Weekends for lunch
Where: 9700 Collins Ave, Bal Harbour, FL
What to Get: Crispy Rice, Scallops, Sesame Noodles
Why: You'll probably see a celebrity and Crispy Rice is my all time favorite food.
When: Perfect weekend dinner plans
Where: Inside Broken Shaker 2727 Indian Creek Dr, Miami Beach, FL
What to Get: Skirt Steak, Brussel Sprouts and Kale Salad. (Ask for Jimmy, one of the head chefs)
Why: The restaurant is brand new and totally original. An old house, they created an incredible hang out spot with food that is just way too good. One of the best meals I've ever had, hands down. Portions are a bit small for cost, but once you taste it you'll see why.
When: This place is packed over the weekend and they only take RESOS for over 6 people. Stop by on a Sunday night with friends and share everything.
Where: 3 locations, 222 NW 26th St, Miami Beach, FL
What to Get: Raw Power Shake
Why: A very Miami thing to do and very healthy as well. The prices aren't exactly wallet friendly but the ingredients they use are some of the best and prove that the $9 shake is not completely ridiculous.
When: My post-workout spot for an early morning breakfast or on-the-go lunch.
Where: 12727 Biscayne Blvd, North Miami, FL
What to Get: Sopa de Pollo (Chicken Soup,) Bistec De Pollo (Chicken Steak,) and the Platanos (Sweet Plantains)
Why: You can't come to Miami without tasting a bit of Cuba. While this is not on Calle Ocho, my grandparents LOVE it here and we find ourselves having family dinner at this spot every time they visit. Super filling, fun atmosphere and so, so tasty.
When: Sunday night family dinner
Joe's Take Away
Where: 11 Washington Ave, Miami Beach, FL
What to Get: Chopped Salad, Stone Crabs, Fried Chicken, Ginger Salmon, Grilled Tomatoes, Fried Oysters and the Key Lime Pie
Why: Why not? It's Joe's. The 101 year old uber-famous Miami Beach restaurant that has a faster, more casual and easier side.
When: Saturday lunch time. Grab your food, enjoy your meal and then rent bikes at South Point Park.
Where: 9700 Collins Ave, Bal Harbour, FL
What to Get: Portobello Mushroom Salad, Pasta Fagioli, Tuna, Mussels
Why: The food is great, the area is gorgeous and Italian food is always a good idea.
When: Sit outside during the day for lunch or dinner. The best place to see and be seen at Bal Harbour Shops.
Where: 210 NE 18th St
What to Get: Lobster Roll, Seared Red Fish,
Why: Owned by the same people as Blue Collar, this is a seafood experience of a lifetime.
When: Any night of the week for dinner. Make a reservation.
Where: 1600 Lenox Ave, Miami Beach, FL
What to Get: The Bloody Mary, Mac n Cheese, Deviled Eggs, Fried Chicken, Fried Green Tomatoes, Hanger Steak.
Why: I'm a Georgia girl at heart, so comfort food is always a must.
Where: 1424 Alton Road, Miami Beach, FL
What to Get: Peking Bao, BBQ Mixed Mushrooms, Shanghai Style Fried Rice, Lobster Roll and the Skirt Steak .
Why: This funky Korean BBQ spot is brand new and so much fun, plus the food is delicious.
When: Any night of the week is ideal.
*A huge thank you to my dad, Stuart Sobel and my foodie friend, Maggie Piper for helping me create this delicious list.