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Legendary desserts, a secret dining room and some of the best Southern fare we’ve ever had—and that’s just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the new spots hitting Miami this season. There are so many interesting concepts, we had to try them all. Here are nine to get you started.

RELATED: 8 Great Places for a Weekday Lunch (in Every Miami Neighborhood)

mandrake miami
Photo courtesy of Mandrake

Mandrake

There’s a new spot in Miami Beach that’s totally worth dodging tourists for. Mandrake, an Asian-inspired restaurant and bar, serves sake and sushi inside a fairy-tale dining room. We’re eyeing the shrimp and scallop wontons paired with the vodka-based cocktail Meek Dills (yes, like the rapper), made with lychee liquor and dill. When you’re done, hang around Mandrake’s bar and patio area, which turns into a late-night lounge on weekends.

210 23rd St., Miami Beach; 305-397-8036 or mandrakemiami.com

parcecla miami
Photo courtesy of Parcela

Parcela

Inside Life House, Little Havana’s first boutique hotel, Parcela serves veg-forward fare inspired by Miami’s Latin culture. The bright all-day café sources ingredients from an on-site garden to create dishes like chilled glass noodles stirred with basil-parsley pesto, and a reimagined Pan con Bistec (made with churrasco, chimichurri, roasted peppers and arugula on a toasted ciabatta). Yes, please.

528 SW Ninth Ave., Miami; 866-466-7534 or lifehouselittlehavana.com

fireman dereks miami
Photo courtesy of Fireman Derek’s

Fireman Derek’s Bake Shop

PSA: Derek Kaplan’s uber-popular Wynwood pie shop is now open in Coconut Grove. The Miami firefighter turned pie connoisseur turns out his signature lineup, including coconut custard, key lime and the notorious Crack Pie (dark salted caramel with powdered sugar), along with a slate of soft-serve ice cream and savory options. No matter what you choose, we guarantee it’ll be one of the best slices you’ve ever tasted. 

3435 Main Hwy., Coconut Grove; 786-502-2396 or firemandereks.com

Kaido
Photo courtesy of Kaido

Kaido

We’re still not over award-winning chef Brad Kilgore’s recently opened Kaido. We could easily visit the swank Japanese-inspired cocktail lounge every night of the week and splurge on high-end drinks and small, shareable bites. (Sorry, wallet.) But what we’re really looking to score is a reservation inside Kaido’s secret dining room, Ama. Bring on the 16-course tasting meal. (Keep an eye out for Kilgore’s forthcoming wood-fired concept Ember, which is expected to open sometime this spring.) 

151 NE 41st St. #217; 786-409-5591 or kaidomiami.com

bachour miami
Photo courtesy of Bachour

Bachour Bakery + Restaurant

Pastry mastermind Antonio Bachour has finally opened his long-awaited namesake bakery and restaurant in Coral Gables and We. Can’t. Get. Enough. Besides serving expert-level breakfast, lunch and brunch fare, Bachour specializes in downright gorgeous and delicious pastries. Yeah, your dessert dreams just came true.

2020 Salzedo St., Coral Gables; 305-203-0552 or antoniobachour.com

 

Photo by Karli Evans Citadel
Karli Evans

The Citadel

We know you’re probably tired of hearing about food halls (we are too)—but the Citadel is worth calling out. The 15,000-square-foot food hall in Little Haiti is a tribute to some of Miami’s best local restaurants, with concepts including tacos from Steve Santana’s Taquiza and pizza from the folks behind Stanzione 87, alongside outposts of 33 Kitchen, Vice City Bean, Palmar and the aforementioned Bachour. There’s also a massive rooftop bar complete with handcrafted cocktails and stunning views of downtown. Don’t mind us—we’ll be casually spending our entire weekend here.

8300 NE Second Ave., Miami; 305-908-3849 or thecitadelmiami.com

grove bay miami
Photo courtesy of Grove Bay Hospitality Group

Root & Bone

Root & Bone is one of the best restaurants to open in South Miami in a lonnnng time. It’s also quickly become one of our favorite spots for Southern food in town. Run by chef-partners Jeff McInnis and Janine Booth, the restaurant churns out fried chicken in every form imaginable: fried chicken biscuits, chicken-and-waffle sandwiches and whole-bird baskets. Don’t forget to order the sticky pork belly bacon bites and, of course, the deviled eggs.

5958 S. Dixie Hwy., Miami; 786-785-1001 or rootnbone.com

miami resto garden
Photo by RMStudioCorp

The Commodore and Isabelle’s Grill Room & Garden

What’s happening inside the Ritz-Carlton Coconut Grove can only be described as the ultimate two-for-one date night. Start at the Commodore, the hotel’s swanky new cocktail lounge, and order prosecco rosé with a classic meat and cheese board. Then make your way next door to Isabelle’s Grill Room for an alfresco meal of steak and truffle fries on the restaurant’s dimly lit garden terrace. Cheers.

3300 SW 27th Ave., Coconut Grove; 305-644-4680 or ritzcarlton.com

cafe la trova miami
Photo courtesy of Café La Trova

Café La Trova

We obsess over this restaurant just about every time we get the opportunity—but trust us, it’s for good reason. James Beard Award–winning chef Michelle Bernstein serves legendary croquetas and empanadas alongside expert-level rum cocktails by acclaimed bartender Julio Cabrera. Pair that with live music almost every night of the week and you’re sure to feel like you escaped to Havana without hopping on a plane.

971 SW Eighth St.; 786-615-4379 or cafelatrova.com

RELATED: 5 Cocktail Lounges Where the Food Is as Good as the Drinks

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