At Yardbird Southern Table & Bar, weekends are particularly busy. For eight hours Saturday and Sunday, the restaurant, which debuted in 2011, serves comfort food, from biscuits and fried chicken to mac 'n' cheese and fried tomatoes. It's one of the longest-running brunches in South Beach in terms of service hours and years open.
With more than 30 items, Yardbird's Southern-style menu strikes a balance between traditional foods and unique mashups. On a recent Saturday, the restaurant was packed with customers waiting up to an hour for a table.
Some of the most popular items are baskets of buttermilk biscuits served with honey butter and house-made jam ($7); bowls brimming with maple-glazed doughnuts garnished with crisp bacon ($9); and fried half chickens alongside five-cheese mac 'n' cheese made with trotolle pasta and coated with a crisp herb crust ($27). Crispy chicken biscuit sandwiches — whose bird is brined for 27 hours and coated in cayenne-spiced flour — come in pairs with pepper jelly ($14).
A few of the dishes are served only during brunch. Strawberry waffles are infused with dulce de leche flavor and topped with chocolate sauce, strawberries, and Chantilly cream ($15), and prosciutto and avocado toast is topped with a poached egg and roasted tomatoes ($22).
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There is also a fried green tomato BLT, where a thick slice of pork belly is perched atop the tomato and served with pimento cheese, smoky tomato jam, and a lemon vinaigrette ($14).
For dessert, look to the brunch menu's "Something Sweet" section, which offers a moist chocolate coffee cake drizzled with chocolate sauce and accompanied by house-made coffee ice cream ($9), and cinnamon apple hand pies dipped in house-made vanilla bean ice cream ($10).
As Yardbird maintains its popularity in Miami Beach, as well as in Las Vegas and Singapore, founder/CEO John Kunkel plans to open a fourth location, in Los Angeles. It's expected to debut this spring inside Beverly Hills' Beverly Center. It will have a similar feel to that of the Miami flagship and will offer a nearly identical menu, with fried chicken, biscuits, and mac 'n' cheese.
Yardbird Southern Table & Bar. 1600 Lenox Ave., Miami Beach; 305-538-5220; runchickenrun.com. Brunch is served Saturday and Sunday 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.