Here are some Miami restaurants that are either brand-spanking-new or that might have flown under your radar.
1. CHOTTO MATTE
Dining al fresco has never been as chic as it is at this London-based import that combines flavor profiles from Peru and Japan. Normally, we wouldn’t send you to Miami Beach’s Lincoln Road without a court order, but Chotto Matte, which debuted in April, is worth the trip for the robata grill, sushi bar and open-air dining. Chotto Matte is open for lunch from noon to 3 p.m. and for dinner 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. It is located at 1664 Lenox Ave., in Miami Beach. Call 305-690-0743 or go to Chotto-Matte.com.
2. JEZEBEL BAR AND KITCHEN
South Beach nightlife impresarios Chris Paciello and Mio Danilovic have put their dynamic-duo skills toward this retro-chic lounge with a speakeasy vibe and elevated pub fare (with a bit of a gourmet twist). Seriously, the bartenders — excuse us — mixologists are magicians. If not for dinner, drop by for happy hour 5-8 p.m. Monday through Saturday and enjoy a few craft cocktails with lite bites from the kitchen (even the hookah is half-price). Jezebel Bar and Kitchen is open from 5 p.m. until very late and is located at 1625 Michigan Ave., in Miami Beach. Call 786-275-6324 or go to JezebelMiami.com.
3. GK BISTRONOMIE WYNWOOD
This is a local favorite, just off the main drag in the Wynwood neighborhood, which pains us to call a hipster hangout. But that’s what Wynwood is. And insiders (there’s that stabbing pain again) will tell you that GK Bistronomie is one of the best restaurants in the art district. Under the auspices of chef and owner Rafael Perez Cambana (Little Palm Island Resort and Spa fame) and chef Philip Harbin (Novikov Bar and Grill), the food uses a variety of locally sourced organic ingredients and remixes them with modern techniques. The menu is mostly seafood but with a global twist. Even better, the chefs are soccer fans, so there’s no better place to catch a match. Outside is the Tequila and Mezcal bar, where you can sample more than 20 different types of mezcal and tequila. GK Bistronomie Wynwood is open for lunch and dinner from noon to 10:30 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays, noon to 11:30 Fridays and Saturdays and 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Sundays (Sunday brunch runs from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.). GK Bistronomie is located at 218 NW 25th St., Miami. Call 786-477-5151 or go to GKBistronomie.com.
Yeah, we know — it’s a burger joint. True, but the small burger chain makes some really tasty fast food. And sometimes you just want a burger, no fuss, no muss, no linen napkins. Burgerim’s thing is that you customize the burger by selecting from three types of buns, five sauces, 11 patties and nine toppings (such as pineapple, avocado and egg). The 2.8-ounce patties are available in turkey, lamb, chicken, salmon, veggie and four types of beef. The Israel import (Burgerim translates to “many burgers” in Hebrew) is planning on opening 14 more locations in South Florida. There are already Burgerims in Sawgrass Mills and Boca Raton. There are two in Miami-Dade County, including in Flagler Park Plaza at 8229 W. Flagler St. (786-542-8926) and in North Miami Beach at 1817 NE 123rd St. (305-456-7030). Both restaurants are open 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays, 11 a.m. to late night Fridays and Saturdays, and noon to 11 p.m. Sundays. For more information, go to Burgerim.com.
5. 1111 PERUVIAN BISTRO
Miami sure has a lot of Peruvian restaurants, doesn’t it? This is one of the best, serving dishes such as poached chicken causa, grilled octopus, veal heart, corvina ceviche, king crab and chicken-liver anticuchos in a panka anticuchera sauce. The lunch menu got a big makeover with bao buns filled with pork or fish, anticuchos, fried calamari, jalea Limeña (a fried seafood dish) as well as a variety of causitas, ceviches and tiraditos. Go ahead. Google away. No one’s judging you. Peruvian Bistro is open from noon to 3 p.m. and 6 to 10:30 p.m. Mondays through Fridays (until 11:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays). It is closed Sundays. The bistro is located at 1111 SW First Ave., in Miami’s Brickell neighborhood. Call 786-615 9633 or go to 1111PeruvianBistro.com.
6. LA MODERNA
This restaurant does something a little different from many Italian restaurants, something that earns that “Moderna” in its name. Its kitchen staff favors a light-handed execution when it comes to sauces, cheeses and creams, which are either subtly layered underneath the dish’s main star or on the side. By all means, try the tagliolino all’ astice (homemade tagliolini with lobster), fiori di zucca (zucchini blossoms stuffed with goat cheese) and the cheesecake (made with bufala mozzarella, instead of ricotta). La Moderna is open from 11:30 a.m. to 1 a.m. Mondays through Thursdays, until 2 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays and until midnight Sundays. La Moderna is located at 1874 Bay Road, in Miami Beach. Call 786-717-7274 or go to LaModerna-Miami.com.
7. THE WHARF MIAMI
David Beckham had his World Cup viewing party here, and now everyone knows that this event space alongside the Miami River is just plain fun. No worries. It’s an expansive 30,000 square feet, so there is plenty of room for everyone. If you’ve been stuck in meetings all morning, this is where to go to recharge your batteries and get some fresh air. There are usually about eight food vendors (serving seafood, pizza, barbecue, pizza, doughnuts, ice cream, etc.) and a few bars for you to pick and choose from. The place is mega-casual, with lounge seating on a wooden deck, and conversation and dining areas along the river. As you’ve probably guessed by now, there is also dockage space for those arriving by boat. The Wharf is open from noon to 2 a.m. Thursdays through Sundays. The Wharf is located at 114 SW North River Drive, in Miami. For more information, call 305-906-4000 or go to WharfMiami.com.
8. SOUL TAVERN
Miami’s first vegetarian gastropub opened in summer 2017, and is a one-stop shop for food, body cleanses, homeopathic elixirs and craft cocktails. The menu includes dishes such as black bean and sweet-plantain sliders, fried-green-tomato Benedict, portobello and eggplant burgers as well as mushroom ceviche. Soul Tavern is open for lunch from noon to 3 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays; for dinner 5:30 to 10 p.m. Sundays through Thursdays (until 11 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays); and for brunch 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. Soul Tavern is located at 1801 West Ave., in Miami Beach. Call 305-925-0799 or go to SoulTavern.com.
This restaurant recently relaunched with a menu makeover and design do-over. Now, the eatery inside the Sole on the Ocean resort in Sunny Isles Beach touts globally inspired but locally sourced fare. So what does that mean? Chef Adam Votaw has added duck carnitas (cornmeal crepes, chipotle blackberries, apple slaw), lobster sliders (with crispy jalapeño and chile crema) and a pan-roasted grouper (with truffle-corn purée, lardons, asparagus and tomato). Baleenkitchen is open daily for breakfast (7 a.m. to 11 a.m.), lunch (11 am. to 4 p.m.) and dinner (6-10 p.m.). It is located at 17315 Collins Ave., in Sunny Isles Beach. Call 786-923-9305 or go to SoleOnTheOcean.com.
10. LATIN CAFE 2000
This Latin food chain has three locations in Miami, and if you want a taste of Cuban food and you want it fast, then one of the Latin Cafe 2000 restaurants is your best bet. We hear a Brickell location is opening this month that will also include a ventanita (a walk-up window where you can get a Cuban coffee and pastries). But for now, the locations are 875 NW 42nd Ave., in Miami (305-642-4700), 1192 W 49th St., in Hialeah (305-820-1919) and 2501 Biscayne Blvd., in Miami (305-576-3838). The hours are different for each restaurant. Go to LatinCafe.com.