Best Beer Selection 2023 | Dream State Brewery | Best Restaurants, Bars, Clubs, Music and Stores in Miami | Miami New Times
Dream State Brewing photo

William Rivera and Paul Lombardozzi are friends with a craft beer habit that inspired them to add one more title to their resumes: entrepreneurs. The pair joined forces earlier this year to bring their hoppy aspirations to life with the 6,000-square-foot Dream State Brewery. The 20-barrel system provides an endlessly rotating selection of house-brewed beers, and the bar's 32 taps provide an astonishing variety of out-of-state beers from some of the most sought-after breweries in the country. The comprehensive lineup is made possible by Rivera's and Lombardozzi's mutual connections, and it covers the full spectrum of styles from IPAs, lagers, pilsners, and fruited ales to stouts and barrel-aged sours. Opt for a flight to sample as many as your blood-alcohol levels can handle.

Photo by Nicole Danna

From the eclectic and artsy décor to the fruity, funky beers on tap, Yeasty Brews offers a unique departure from the South Florida brewery norm. Founded in 2021 by head brewer Dan Pfaffenbach and his girlfriend, Denielle Mizrahi, this quaint Lauderhill spot serves small-batch brews and innovative in-house fare. The business started with Pfaffenbach's popular home brew, a milkshake-style hefeweizen called "Banana Slinger," which emits banana aromas from the yeast used to make it. Today, yeast is the still name of the game at Yeasty Brews, where they endeavor to help craft beer novices brave uncharted territory. A three-barrel system produces a variety of unique experimental beers, many you'd be hard-pressed to find anywhere else. Although the brewer's love of IPAs and hefeweizens shines, his recipe book is globally inspired, including a Norwegian-style strawberry imperial blonde ale, Belgian pale ale with watermelon, dragon fruit-infused tripels, and a key-lime vanilla cream ale. Pfaffenbach's creative genius even dreamed up a vegan version of the popular milkshake-style IPA, offering guests a piña colada-inspired take that uses coconut instead of lactose to create a creamy, full-bodied brew. The 3,000-square-foot taproom also has an in-house kitchen that offers easy eats like flatbreads, grilled cheese, paninis, and vegan empanadas. Like the beer, everything is made and prepared in house.

Prison Pals Brewing Co. photo

Prison Pals Brewing Co. began making beer in March 2020 without a taproom but has gone on to cement Miami's position on the craft beer map. Earlier this year, the Doral brewery made national headlines when it was awarded a bronze medal in the 2023 Beer World Cup for its Nelson Hazy IPA, a smooth and easy-drinking IPA brewed with seven pounds of Citra and Nelson Sauvin hops per barrel. It's a significant achievement for the two-year-old brewery that began as a passion project by Argentine friends CEO Juan Pipkin and brewmaster Diego Setti. Today, Prison Pals offers a growing list of experimental brews and true-to-style lagers and ales, including the La Colorada amber ale, Dorada Pampeana blonde ale, Cielito Lindo Mexican lager, and Born to Be Free pale ale. The original Doral taproom and its sister taproom in Oakland Park provide an ever-changing selection of Setti's experimental one-off brews, including Setti's smoothie series: high-ABV sour ales treated with 35 to 40 percent fruit. Among the most popular is Aloha, a nod to one of Setti's favorite smoothies in Argentina, which blends pineapple, ginger, and mint.

Photo courtesy of La Sandwicherie

It's 4 a.m., and you crave turkey and brie on a fresh French baguette or prosciutto and mozzarella on a toasted croissant. Anywhere else, you might be hard-pressed to fulfill that craving at that hour. But since 1988, La Sandwicherie has been serving gourmet and custom-made sandwiches to Miami's night owls and partygoers until 5 a.m. Originally in Miami Beach, the sandwich haven has expanded to Brickell, Wynwood, Coral Gables, and North Beach. You can choose from various deli meats, smoked salmon, pate, and cheeses on a baguette or buttery croissants to cure your midnight cravings. If you are in the mood for antioxidants, don't worry; La Sandwicherie has fresh fruit smoothies, too.

Royal Palm Grill is worth the journey to Homestead. It's located in a former drugstore that once had a soda fountain counter in the '50s. Today, it offers traditional diner food, with three-egg omelets, pancakes, and biscuits & gravy. Sometimes the chef/owner will offer some fun, off-menu items, like Cap'n Crunch french toast. Bypass the open dining room in front and head to the classic diner counter, where you can watch the specials roll out of the kitchen. It's the perfect way to start any visit to the Redlands, Everglades National Park, or the Florida Keys.

If a coffee cup filled with feathery scrambled eggs topped with peaks of Hollandaise foam and offered with points of Cuban tostada for dipping sounds like the ideal way to begin a Miami morning, then make like Gianni Versace, who used to walk to News Cafe every morning. Reopened after the pandemic shut it down, this historic café offers inventive breakfast fare — think piña colada pancakes with grilled pineapple — and trendy items, ranging from avocado or ricotta toast to chicken and waffles. For thirst-quenching, freshly made juice blends and mocktails abound, as do bubbly and bloody concoctions that hit just right before a day on the beach.

R House takes the brunch experience to new heights with drag queens in six-inch stilettos. R House owners Rocco Carulli and Owen Bale curate one of Miami's most electric experiences every Saturday and Sunday and have even refurbished their restaurant with a huge outdoor patio and rearranged the indoor dining room so everyone can have a prime viewing spot of show producer Athena Dion and her queens being fierce and fabulous. R House offers prix-fixe meals served family-style (with some vegan options) to anyone 18 and older and bottomless mimosas, mojitos, soft drinks, or sangria to the 21 and up crowd. Now more than ever, it's important to support the art of drag, and there's no more enjoyable way than by bringing all your friends to dance, twerk, eat, and enjoy the incredible talent of these fierce performers.

Photo courtesy of Mitch's Downtown Bagel Cafe

When Mitch Shidlofsky relocated to South Florida from New York, the idea was to make a better life for his growing family. After operating a series of delis in Broward County, Shidlofsky created his concept, Mitch's Westside Bagels, which opened in Weston in 2002. The place would become a local institution, offering locals his take on classic deli dishes, many of which were built on fresh-baked bagels. Nearly 20 years later, Shidlofsky's son Adam joined his dad in the bagel-making arena with the 2021 debut of Mitch's Downtown Bagel Cafe. Here, the Shidlofsky father-and-son duo features an all-new spin on the traditional New York-style bagel shop, with an expanded menu that highlights all-day breakfast sandwiches built on an assortment of fresh-baked, handcrafted bagels that include gluten-free options as well as bialys.

Photo by Nicole Danna

When you ask Robert Sandler, the mastermind behind the Outrageous Bagel Company, what makes his bagels "outrageous," his answer is simple: it's the selection. His Kendall establishment boasts an impressive collection of 25 flavors made from scratch and baked fresh daily. While you can find traditional toppings like sesame, garlic, onion, or that wonderful amalgamation of all three in "everything," bagel aficionados come here for inventive concoctions, like the savory sundried tomato, fruity guava, cheesy cheddar herb, or the indulgent triple cinnamon bagels. But the DIY bagel adventure doesn't end there: Dozens of housemade spreads expand flavor potentials exponentially, including the garden veggie and scallion cream cheese to the more novel flavors like honey almond, strawberry, and decadent honey butter.

Max'd Out photo

Miami native Max Santiago cut his chops helping to open the Salty, but his drive to push the doughnut to the max motivated him to pursue his aptly named venture, Max'd Out Donuts. After years of consulting, pop-ups, and plenty of R&D, Santiago opened the bright and cheery shop earlier this year in North Miami Beach, pedaling nothing but coffee, tea, and the chef's pastry-inspired doughnuts and doughnut holes made from a proprietary 24-hour raised brioche dough that took years to perfect. While the menu offers an endlessly rotating selection of Santiago's ongoing recipe creations, there's always a vegan and gluten-free option to please every palate. You can't go wrong with his "O.G." glazed, prepared with whole vanilla bean and rich buttermilk. Come early for regular menu favorites like the café con leche roll, a deep-fried cinnamon roll with layers of espresso grounds and a glaze made with café con leche topped with a cream cheese glaze, or the key lime pie doughnut, a homage to Florida's unofficial dessert, complete with tangy key lime custard and a key lime glaze-topped torched meringue.

Best Of Miami®

Best Of Miami®