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  • Article

    Two Types of Tapas

    Restaurants representing Cuba, Mexico, Nicaragua, Colombia, Uruguay, and just about every other Spanish-speaking nation can be found within the corridor of strip malls along Bird Road in West Miami-Dade. Few have been around as long as the Spanish So...

    by Lee Klein on July 21, 2005
  • Article

    This Time a Great Notion

    Having eaten at my share of bookstore cafs over the years, I must admit that while the melding of good books and good food is sometimes a great notion, the result usually is more bone in the throat than budding prospects. As restaurateurs, most bo...

    by Bill Citara on July 21, 2005
  • Article

    Victorious Victuals

    Having once been stung by a man-of-war, I was less than excited to be seated with my back to a tall, narrow tank filled with gracefully flowing jellyfish, glowing translucently in blue neon light. The waiter's chatter about chef James Wierzelewski's ...

    by Lee Klein on July 14, 2005
  • Article

    The Freshest of Fish

    If I had to choose one nation as my favorite food source, it would be China. Over the years and around the world, I've found a reliable indicator of great Chinese restaurants is the presence of fish tanks. Not the decorative kind but the sort in whic...

    by Pamela Robin Brandt on July 14, 2005
  • Article

    Fit for a Queen

    Ogbe and Felitia Guobadia, he from Nigeria, she from Virginia, met at Rutgers University and married in Nigeria's former capital Lagos, where they opened an American fried chicken joint. Political turmoil prodded the two back to New Jersey, where the...

    by Lee Klein on July 7, 2005
  • Article

    The Flavors of Freedom

    "Give me liberty or give me Parrilla Liberty." I think a famous freedom fighter said that. If he didn't, he should have, because a meal at Parrilla Liberty -- an ink spot of an Argentine steak house just blocks from Lincoln Road -- will definit...

    by Bill Citara on July 7, 2005
  • Article

    Moo Times Two

    I have long maintained that if the axiom "you are what you eat" were true, the language among Argentines would be reduced to only one word: moo. The Knife and Matador, a pair of all-you-can-stuff-your-gut-with Argentine steak houses that have recentl...

    by Lee Klein on June 30, 2005
  • Article

    In Wine There Is Truth

    A house alone is not a home, according to the saying. For that transformation to happen, a building needs life. And for the same reason, neither is Miami's "square mile of style" (a nickname from the Seventies) a neighborhood. Revival efforts over th...

    by Pamela Robin Brandt on June 30, 2005
  • Article

    Nothing Wild About This Cat

    Jaguar Ceviche Spoon Bar & Latam Grill is a mouthful of a moniker to pronounce, yet if the aim was for a definitive nomenclature, it should be called Jaguar Ceviche Spoon Bar, Latam Grill & Mexican Restaurant. Now all you need to know is that Latam s...

    by Lee Klein on June 23, 2005
  • Article

    It Really Is Good

    Wouldn't it be nice if every restaurant were named as truthfully as Le Bon (an Italian dialect for "it's good")? Then we'd be seeing restaurant names like these: "It's Okay: We suck only a little bit." "It's Mediocre: We suck a lot but the ...

    by Bill Citara on June 23, 2005
  • Article

    An Oasis of Ordinary

    Sugo is a new Italian restaurant situated inside Sanctuary, a recently opened spa/salon/boutique hotel on James Avenue in South Beach. With Casa Tua, Blue Door, and Nobu nearby, this neighborhood is becoming something of an epicenter of epicurean coo...

    by Lee Klein on June 16, 2005
  • Article

    When Being in the Dawg House Is a Treat

    Our life is frittered away by detail ... simplify, simplify," wrote Henry David Thoreau in Walden. But that was more than 150 years ago, a time when life's big basics could be altered by an individual, rather than being bureaucratically locked on a c...

    by Pamela Robin Brandt on June 16, 2005
  • Article

    Small Bites

    Editor's note: Periodically we will publish capsule reviews like those below in addition to our weekly full reviews. Contributors to this installment include Lee Klein, Pamela Robin Brandt, Greg Baker, Becky Randel, and Karen Figueiredo. More than 43...

    on June 16, 2005
  • Article

    Tasty Tequila and Bad Burritos

    I don't deny having visited two recently opened Mexican joints with shot-glass-half-empty expectations. I mean the local track record concerning cantinas, taquerias, and the like is abysmally predictable: sombreros on stucco walls, margaritas in fish...

    by Lee Klein on June 9, 2005
  • Article

    Flavors of France

    Since biblical times, bread has been referred to as the staff of life. According to Psalm 104, bread "strengthens man's heart." Although my grandmother never went quite as far as King David, she always insisted the family eat the crust, claiming it p...

    by Pamela Robin Brandt on June 9, 2005
  • Article

    Il Migliore Truly Is Tops

    Il Migliore's chef/owner Neal Cooper is really a chef: Trained at a prestigious culinary institute, he's knowledgeable in gastronomy, gastropods, gazpacho, gastriques, gas burners, the effect of garbanzos on the gastrointestinal system, and everythin...

    by Lee Klein on June 2, 2005
  • Article

    Plainly Delicious

    Judging by appearances, Sushi Chef is definitely plain-Jun. On a charmless stretch of that tree-lined drag strip we call Coral Way sits an unassuming storefront, its drab faade giving no clue that this little place is anything other than one of t...

    by Bill Citara on June 2, 2005
  • Article

    Lost in Translation - Suffering from a stifling case of Wynter blues

    Not too long ago an unflattering review of Baleen's brunch adorned these pages. The oak-paneled, forest green, chandelier-sophisticated dining room (curiously themed with monkeys) didn't bother me, nor did the circular, fully foliaged outdoor patio, ...

    by Lee Klein on May 26, 2005
  • Article

    A Real Villagio

    If Merrick Park were a real village, then Villagio would be a real Italian restaurant. Wait a minute. Villagio is a real Italian restaurant. Is it possible? Can this fashionable village of presumptive consumption -- whose inhabitants drive shin...

    by Bill Citara on May 26, 2005
  • Article

    Rodriguez Steaks His Turf

    If you're in the vicinity of the Village of Merrick Park and aching for a big, thick, juicy steak, you most likely head to the Palm. Should you be more in the mood for dazzling, contemporary Latin-inspired cooking, you choose Chispa. But how many fol...

    by Lee Klein on May 19, 2005
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