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Five Restaurants With the Best Service in Miami

A great meal starts with great service.
A great meal starts with great service.
HCareers.com

Let's play a little free association. When you think of Miami dining, you probably come up with terms like fresh, light, daring, and innovative. But what about great service? For years, snowbirds and recent transplants from parts north have bantered about how service was sooooo much better in New York than it is here in Miami.

They are full of baloney. First of all, there are more aspiring actors in the Big Apple who would rather be booking a Listerine commercial than helping you choose between a burger and a salad. Second, there are many people in the restaurant industry -- from chef to server -- who take great pride in what they do for a living, and many of them are in Miami.

See also:
- Azul, Naoe on Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star List


In fact, Miami has been in the news lately. Its restaurants winning top honors in service categories from major national publications and websites.

Last week, Azul and Naoe were given five stars by the Forbes Travel Guide -- a first for Miami restaurants -- and today, Naoe was the only Miami restaurant to be named as one of OpenTable's top 100 restaurants for service.

Not every restaurant has to be super-expensive to impart a wonderful experience. Great service can be as simple as the small café that calls regulars by name and makes diners feel at home with extra coffee, a smile, and extensive knowledge about the food.

Here's our list of Miami restaurants that treat their customers like royalty.

Five Restaurants With the Best Service in Miami

5. GreenStreet Café
Surprised GreenStreet made our list? You shouldn't be. This iconic café, nestled on a tree-lined corner in Coconut Grove, is busy any time of the day or night -- and the food is only part of the attraction. Take a seat in the morning and you might see the mayor and a group of city commissioners having a power meal near a gathering of moms taking a coffee break. The one thing they all have in common is the fact that they're treated equally well at GreenStreet. This place is the Cheers bar on steroids -- everybody knows not only your name but also the fact that you like skim milk in your latte, prefer cream cheese to butter on your toast, and want only egg whites in your omelet. Come back on a Sunday and you'll see the same people at the same tables -- diners remaining loyal to their favorite servers. In return, the servers remember the names of every dog, every grandchild, and every birthday that comes their way. It's intimate and personal. And it proves that great service does not have to equal an exorbitant bill.

Five Restaurants With the Best Service in Miami

4. Joe's Stone Crab
There's usually a seriously long wait for a table at Joe's Stone Crab. Just get a drink at the bar and deal with it, because once you sit down, you'll be treated to not only some good seafood but also one of the last remnants of old-time service -- when being a waiter was a noble profession to which people aspired. Sure, you'll have a lead server who will introduce himself to you by name, but you'll also have dozens of other servers who appear out of nowhere. There is a well-orchestrated symphony of service nightly at Joe's, which makes dining here a complete experience.

Want access to our Best Of picks from your smartphone? Download our free Best Of app for the iPhone or Android phone from the App Store or Google Play. Don't forget to check out the full Best of Miami® online at bestof.voiceplaces.com.

Five Restaurants With the Best Service in Miami

3. Red the Steakhouse
You can get a great piece of meat at another steak house in Miami Beach, but how will you be treated if you're not a celeb? At Red the Steakhouse, expect no attitude just because you don't have a lucrative contract with a major-league team or a reality-TV show. Imagine a place where your reservation actually snags you a table on time, where servers literally run to your side to pour olive oil into your dish for your bread, suggest a reasonably priced wine for the table, and don't sneer because you're, well, a normal person. There's a good chance you'll spot celebs in the dining room; you just won't feel inferior to them at Red.

Five Restaurants With the Best Service in Miami
Azul

2. Azul
Azul at the Mandarin Oriental just received a five-star rating by Forbes Travel Guide for good reason. From the moment you walk into the gorgeous restaurant (we recommend a rare early meal to take full advantage of the view before night falls), you are treated like an A-lister. Greeted by name, you'll be escorted to your table, where your server will help you decide on the perfect meal. Can't see the menu? There are reading glasses at your disposal. Is there a slight chill in the air? Your arms will be wrapped in a soft Pashmina. From the sommelier helping you decipher the enormous wine list to the army of staff refilling your water and taking plates away as if by magic, you'll be totally spoiled. No wonder it's one of the most popular restaurants in which to propose. Bring your future bride to this place at your own peril, because once you dine here, there's no going back to the Cheesecake Factory.

Want access to our Best Of picks from your smartphone? Download our free Best Of app for the iPhone or Android phone from the App Store or Google Play. Don't forget to check out the full Best of Miami® online at bestof.voiceplaces.com.

Five Restaurants With the Best Service in Miami

1. Naoe
If you're a Type A personality freak, this is the place to just sit back and let someone else take control for a change. With only eight diners at a time, chef/owner Kevin Cory serves his omakaze meals at a leisurely pace. Dishes are brought out and explained one by one, each made with the finest and freshest ingredients -- so much so that much of the seafood had been happily playing in the water seconds before landing on your plate. If you've ever had a fantasy of renting out a restaurant for an evening for you and a few friends, this is as close as you can get without taking out a second mortgage. Naoe, by the way, was just awarded five stars by Forbes Travel Guide and was the only Miami-area restaurant to make OpenTable's best service list.

Want access to our Best Of picks from your smartphone? Download our free Best Of app for the iPhone or Android phone from the App Store or Google Play. Don't forget to check out the full Best of Miami® online at bestof.voiceplaces.com.

Follow Laine Doss on Twitter @LaineDoss and Facebook.

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Use Current Location

Related Locations

miles
GreenStreet Cafe

3468 Main Highway
Miami, FL 33133-5916

305-444-0244

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Joe's Stone Crab Restaurant

11 Washington Ave.
Miami Beach, FL 33139

305-673-0365

www.joesstonecrab.com

miles
Red the Steakhouse

119 Washington Ave.
Miami Beach, FL 33139

305-534-3688

www.redthesteakhouse.com

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Azul Restaurant
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Naoe

661 Brickell Key Drive
Miami, FL 33131

305-947-6263

www.naoemiami.com


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