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The Best Restaurants in Miami

Traveling to Miami for the first time? Cover all your bases with these top restaurants for every craving.

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Welcome to Miami

Many think life in Miami is like living in a postcard: sun, surf, beautiful people, partying all through the night. In some ways, it is. Miamians certainly know how to have a good time and take advantage of the local bounty, but behind these picture-perfect restaurants and bars are serious culinary skills. From sparkling outdoor bars to Old Florida seafood houses to Italy-approved pizza and Miami-style ice cream, here are some Miami restaurants and bars worth writing home about.

Editor's note: This guide has been updated with the latest information on these restaurants as of June 2021.

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Photo: Juan Fernando Ayora

Flame Grilled: KYU

Within a year of its debut, this modern Asian small plates concept had earned national recognitition. It should not have been a surprise. Founded by two Zuma veterans, the Wynwood spot is so hot, it can take months to score a reservation between 7 and 9 p.m. But that doesn’t mean it’s stuffy or pretentious: Chef Michael Lewis focuses on the Japanese barbecue style known as yakiniku, but with an American twist. Sustainable meats star in this Wynwood restaurant's varied options

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Ice Cream: Azucar

From Italian gelato to Argentine helado to Coney Island frozen custard, warm-weather destinations inspire great takes on ice cream. And Miami is no different with its sabor latino, ideally sampled at Azucar Ice Cream Company. The shop specializes in tropical flavors, including sweet plantain, mantecado (Cuban vanilla), coconut flan, guava, avocado and the signature Abuela Maria, vanilla swirled with ruby-red guava, cream cheese and chopped Maria cookies. Although you can find the scoops at outlets throughout the city, the Little Havana storefront is the most-fitting place to sample the homemade Cuban ice cream, ideally on a weekend when salsa bands play under bright green palms, creating the mood and flavor of Havana.

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Iconic Restaurant: Joe's Stone Crab

A century is a long time, but for a restaurant in a city that has only been around that long, it’s an eternity. Joe’s Stone Crab started slinging claws to eager crowds before Miami Beach was even incorporated as a city, and it’s still one of the most-beloved spots in all of South Florida. Though the waits are long — there are no reservations — the service is impeccable, parking is cheap and the food is legit. The namesake local crabs are obviously the draw, but insiders know that everything is great, including jumbo lump crab cakes, lobster, the famous fried chicken and even the classic New York strip.

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