La Cofradia Ceviche Bar

This stylish Peruvian/Mediterranean restaurant excels in everything a dining establishment can. The room is modern and elegant, imbued with warm walnut notes and a sky-high ceiling. Service summons a professionalism not seen often in these parts. The wine list (and for that matter, the artisanal cheese selections) are extensive and smart. And co-owner Jean Paul Desmaison, one of Lima's rising star chefs prior to landing in South Florida, orchestrates a cuisine as riveting as any — not just in the Gables, and not just within a Peruvian or Hispanic context, but also in all of Miami. Proof of this can be attained via a taste of chupe de camarones, a classic Peruvian soup with shrimp, butternut squash, lima beans, corn, cheese, and a poached quail egg. Need more evidence? Pick up a forkful of pork slow-braised with pisco and grapes, or of baby octopus in Tuscan ragout, or, for dessert, of flambéed pineapple with purple corn demi-glace and white chocolate semifreddo (main courses run between $28 and $40, desserts $8 to $10). La Cofradia is under many diners' radars, but it is also on many diners' radars, so reserve a table in advance — especially weekends.

Orale Taqueria Mexicana

A corn tortilla folded over meat — the taco is so simple a concept, yet it used to be nearly impossible to find one made properly around here. That changed three years ago when Orale — a red, white, and green-striped taqueria-on-wheels — pulled into its now-customary parking spot on the SW 28th Street side of Douglas Park. Every weekend, from morning till 7 p.m., Moises and Francisco, brothers from just outside Oaxaca, griddle up tacos, tacos, and more tacos for an ever-increasing number of devotees. Some of the best include juicy barbecue lamb (barbacoa); slowly roasted pork (carnitas de cerdo); and the less familiar lengua (tongue), suadereo (the fatty, riblike beef belly), and cachete (cheek). Have it your way by adding traditional stuffers such as chopped onion, cilantro, radish slices, a squeeze of lime, or any of three searing salsas — hot, hotter, and hoo-boy! Contrary to popular opinion, the best things in life aren't free, but sometimes they come pretty damn cheap: Orales's tacos cost $2.50 apiece (cash only).

Best Of Miami®

Best Of Miami®