Naked Lunch

1951 NW Seventh Ave.
Miami, Florida
Naked Lunch +

Courtesy of Ralph Pagano


  • Monday through Friday 7:30 a.m. to 8 p.m.
This weekday-only spot, located inside the University of Miami Life Science & Technology Park, is a cross between the fictional Peach Pit from Beverly Hills, 90210 and the famed Katz's Delicatessen on New York City's Lower East Side (home of the mile-high deli sandwich and the faked orgasm from When Harry Met Sally). Red vinyl booths line the room, and chef Ralph Pagano's best-loved sayings and quotes grace the walls. His favorite? "The early bird gets the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese." The menu is filled with sandwiches, salads, and daily blue-plate specials. There's also housemade chicken soup, which arrives steaming. It could well serve as a meal in itself, but the real reason for coming here is to order a proper pastrami on rye. The chef starts with National Deli pastrami, then steams the meat, and then cools it. The pastrami is sliced and steamed once more in duck fat. The warm meat is piled onto slightly toasted rye. Served with a pickle, it needs only a bit of deli mustard as a foil for the richness. It's easily shareable, or devour it as a feast for one. You won't find milkshakes at a traditional Jewish delicatessen, but you will find the hand-spun variety, along with a full bar, at Naked Lunch.

Read our full review.

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