Grocery list: Grass Jelly Drink, soursop juice, dried whole head-on anchovies, dried headless sardines, fruit of wolfberry, salted duck eggs and fish eggs, salted mackerel (the kind from Thailand), jar of pigs' blood, quail (Golden Jumbo brand), goat meat, frozen shark fin, foxglove root, dodder seed, schisandra fruit, and a bunch of cong bong bu shen war or other fresh produce (herbs, leafy vegetables, tubers). Also a money tree and one of those nice tea sets and a few exotic teas for when the Johnsons come over Saturday. Oh, and a sculpture: dragon, dancing fish, a fat or skinny Buddha. Get one of those beige fruits that look like the offspring of a pineapple and a football, durian monthong it's called. Shumai dumplings, peanut balls, red bean balls (the paste is fine), giant bag of rice, mung, some single green peas for garnish. Oh, let's do the shrimp on sugar cane skewers. Some of that vegan "ham" from Taiwan. Brrrinnng. "Honey? What type of dumplings: chicken and cabbage? Pork and leek? Sure. And grab some noodles from the aisle stocked fully and solely by pasta products? Right, Sun Shun Fuk. Seaweed, squid, haw cakes -- goes without saying. Bye." You know, it's the Year of the Monkey, so let's go to town: whole fresh water chestnuts, banana flowers, yam cakes. "Honey? Yeah. Listen, about the fish: live tilapia, rex sole, or golden pompano?" Duck. Hmmm. Gizzards, legs, wings, or feet? Seahorses, dried roundscad (Galunggong), pickled young-tamarind rind, sadao flower, lotus rootlet, rhizome strips. Great. Got something from San Fran, Taiwan, Thailand, India, the Philippines, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Japan, Vietnam, and, uh, oh yeah, China. Damn, forgot dessert. Chibikko makes those great thumbnail-size vanilla wafers.

Okay, so this place is part of a gargantuan franchise and the CDs are just one facet of the things you'll find (F.Y.E. sells everything related to entertainment units). Still the range of Latin music is extensive. From the Kumbia Kings to David Bisbal, contemporary sounds, sugar factor notwithstanding, are prominently displayed and available for sampling. More obscure acts from Cuba are also available as well as a healthy section of Brazilian sounds. To top it off F.Y.E. is located in one of the most Latin-flavored malls in Miami. If you don't have the Latin Miami look, as seen on Sabado Gigante, when you walk into the Dolphin Mall, you can buy it in a short stroll through the Ramblas section.

Okay, so this place is part of a gargantuan franchise and the CDs are just one facet of the things you'll find (F.Y.E. sells everything related to entertainment units). Still the range of Latin music is extensive. From the Kumbia Kings to David Bisbal, contemporary sounds, sugar factor notwithstanding, are prominently displayed and available for sampling. More obscure acts from Cuba are also available as well as a healthy section of Brazilian sounds. To top it off F.Y.E. is located in one of the most Latin-flavored malls in Miami. If you don't have the Latin Miami look, as seen on Sabado Gigante, when you walk into the Dolphin Mall, you can buy it in a short stroll through the Ramblas section.

Sunset Corners Fine Wine & Spirits
Dubbed the patron saint of brewers and maltsters by Charles IV in 1357, Saint Wenceslas is also the patron saint of the Czech Republic. Maybe that's why the quality of a Czech beer, such as Lev or Knight -- which have been around since the Fifteenth Century -- is unquestioned. And even though it's possible to find a good imported beer at other stores, at Sunset Corners they have over 300 variations of the heavenly brew, and each comes with its own backstory. That's not all their 50 years of peddling booze will get you. The store is so cluttered that cases of alcohol litter the aisles, and as customers make their way through the maze of racks, they will find a dizzying display of the finest bottled grapes from across the world; no doubt they will finally understand what those bourgeois wine-tasting parties were all about.

Dubbed the patron saint of brewers and maltsters by Charles IV in 1357, Saint Wenceslas is also the patron saint of the Czech Republic. Maybe that's why the quality of a Czech beer, such as Lev or Knight -- which have been around since the Fifteenth Century -- is unquestioned. And even though it's possible to find a good imported beer at other stores, at Sunset Corners they have over 300 variations of the heavenly brew, and each comes with its own backstory. That's not all their 50 years of peddling booze will get you. The store is so cluttered that cases of alcohol litter the aisles, and as customers make their way through the maze of racks, they will find a dizzying display of the finest bottled grapes from across the world; no doubt they will finally understand what those bourgeois wine-tasting parties were all about.

Robert Novigrod is nothing less than a hero. America's most grotesque social failure is its healthcare system, among the worst in the industrialized world, especially for those suffering chronic pain. The federal government, with its "war on drugs," has created a nation of spineless physicians and impotent pharmacists terrified to provide effective, safe controlled substances subject to abuse. Not the friendly folks at one of the few "mom-and-pop" drugstores left. While the chains might be fine for those who need to choose from eight different types of nail clippers, Novigrod and his smiling staff deliver what equally courageous doctors prescribe, including strong medicine needed by victims of severe pain. A family business passed along to the incredibly gracious and skilled Novigrod, Midtown deserves more than awards or accolades. It deserves your business.

Robert Novigrod is nothing less than a hero. America's most grotesque social failure is its healthcare system, among the worst in the industrialized world, especially for those suffering chronic pain. The federal government, with its "war on drugs," has created a nation of spineless physicians and impotent pharmacists terrified to provide effective, safe controlled substances subject to abuse. Not the friendly folks at one of the few "mom-and-pop" drugstores left. While the chains might be fine for those who need to choose from eight different types of nail clippers, Novigrod and his smiling staff deliver what equally courageous doctors prescribe, including strong medicine needed by victims of severe pain. A family business passed along to the incredibly gracious and skilled Novigrod, Midtown deserves more than awards or accolades. It deserves your business.

Uncle Sam's Music
A stroll through the packed aisles of Uncle Sam's used-CD bins gives weight to that old adage of one man's trash being another man's treasure. Surely that stack of Steely Dan titles wasn't sold off by the same person who divested himself of a half-dozen Tupac Shakur CDs? No matter. Don't waste time pondering the sociology behind the Beach's musical tribes as their respective tastes flow back and forth at $7.99 a pop -- just get a' hunting. There's something here for everyone, from the latest hip-hop releases to the freshest trance straight off the boat from Europe to old-fashioned rock and roll, complete with big hair. And best of all -- in a marked departure from most area music shops -- every CD can be previewed to your heart's content. But please remember as you strap on a pair of headphones: Leave the singing along for your home shower routine. The staff at Uncle Sam's may be friendly and helpful, but they still have limits.

A stroll through the packed aisles of Uncle Sam's used-CD bins gives weight to that old adage of one man's trash being another man's treasure. Surely that stack of Steely Dan titles wasn't sold off by the same person who divested himself of a half-dozen Tupac Shakur CDs? No matter. Don't waste time pondering the sociology behind the Beach's musical tribes as their respective tastes flow back and forth at $7.99 a pop -- just get a' hunting. There's something here for everyone, from the latest hip-hop releases to the freshest trance straight off the boat from Europe to old-fashioned rock and roll, complete with big hair. And best of all -- in a marked departure from most area music shops -- every CD can be previewed to your heart's content. But please remember as you strap on a pair of headphones: Leave the singing along for your home shower routine. The staff at Uncle Sam's may be friendly and helpful, but they still have limits.

Designed like a shoe store, the Barn features unvarnished wood shelves lining every available inch of wall space, stocked end-to-end with more books than some libraries. Simple ceiling-high shelves also divide the store into aisles for Detective (purchase: the unintentionally funny The Corpse Had a Familiar Face by Edna Buchanan), Novels (purchase: two brand-new reprints of The Catcher in the Rye), Science Fiction (purchase: a short-story collection by overlooked genius Alfred Bester called Starburst), Gothic, Children, Biography, Education, Historical Romance, and many others, including the unusual Math Crafts section. There's other stuff: wishing stones, page marks, bookbags. You trade even -- say three of your books for three of theirs -- then pay a 25 percent charge on the value of the barter. A couple decades old and blessed with young, smart, polite clerks, the Barn doesn't need computers or any of that newfangled junk. Just an adding machine and a kazillion words published in book form, then offered to the world.

Best Of Miami®

Best Of Miami®