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Photo courtesy of Joe's Stone Crab Restaurant

Joe's Stone Crab

Joe's Stone Crab
You know Joe’s. The history, the gloriously sweet stone crabs, the notoriously long wait for a table. Often overlooked are the consistently good food, the truly professional service, the free parking, the surprising affordability (except the crabs), and the stately ambiance. Tuxedoed waiters whirl through the dining rooms with oval trays held high above their heads while the buzz of diners subtly occupies the air like the intangible gathering of ions before a thunderstorm, yet it’s difficult to imagine so large a space being any cozier. Stone crabs are, of course, the mainstay of Joe’s menu, and somehow they seem to taste a little fresher and sweeter here. The rest of the offerings, though, don’t disappoint. And nearly everybody orders Joe’s key-lime pie, renowned as the best in town, for dessert. If you show up on a Saturday evening, be prepared to cool your heels for hours. If you want to sit quickly, visit on a weekday, when the restaurant opens at 6 p.m. sharp (except Monday, when Joe’s is closed), and you might be eating those sweet claws before you know it. Or keep it simple and grab your claws at Joe’s Take Away, the casual baby brother of the iconic South Beach fixture. New Normal: Joe’s has converted a parking pot into a patio area for additional outdoor seating. And for the first time in its century-long history, the restaurant is accepting reservations.

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