Best Gourmet Market Miami 2011 - Laurenzo's Italian Center
16385 W. Dixie Highway
North Miami Beach, FL 33160
Some people need special lighting, kitschy artwork, stuffy classical music, and sky-high prices to feel like they're buying gourmet. If that's you, skip Laurenzo's, where the focus is on awesome food at reasonable prices. The family has been in the food biz in South Florida since 1951, and many locals have been customers for decades. The store is huge, offering hard-to-find high-end and/or imported grocery products, gorgeous produce (from the farmers' market across the street), luscious seafood and meats, and what is most often described as an "interesting" wine selection — not immense, but inventive. There's an amazing collection of fresh pasta for just a few bucks a pound, along with more feta cheese than you can shake a Greek walking stick at. Olives, fresh fish, butchers who listen — this place is just short of perfect. The family recipes behind the prepared foods have gained fame far beyond Miami. In fact, the Food Network's Road Tasted recently popped by to sample Laurenzo's stone crab bisque, one of the family's best-loved, buttery, spicy delicacies. Like a good Italian son, though, David Laurenzo declined to reveal a few key ingredients on national television.