Memorial Day marks the unofficial start of summer. While the rest of the country breaks out their swimsuits and barbecue tongs for the first taste of good weather, Miamians are already dealing with sweltering heat. Though the beach is always fun, who wants to fire up the grill when it's 90 degrees out?
It's a much better idea to allow someone to do the hot work for you. Luckily, a host of restaurants throughout South Florida cook up some tasty barbecue specials so you can get your grill on without any of the work.
The trendy gastropub offers two comfort foods in one: The American Social mac and cheese ($12.50) — which includes Vermont cheddar, Gruyère, orecchiette, and bread crumbs — is served alongside braised short chicken ($5 at the Brickell location, $4 at Las Olas) or short ribs ($6 at both locations). Head to Brickell for barbecued pork belly sliders ($16) or Las Olas for barbecued pulled pork flatbread topped with grilled pineapple, pickled red onions, queso fresco, and cilantro ($15.50).
Big Easy Winebar & Grill at Brickell City Centre
South Africans take their barbecuing very seriously. Celebrity chefs and even home cooks battle to make the best barbecue, or braai, as it's called there. In that spirit, this South African eatery offers selections from the grill, including the Big Easy braai ($110): a barbecue feasts that feeds two to four people and includes South African farmers sausage, a 12-ounce top sirloin, double lamb chops, Nigerian prawns, and a choice of two sides, such as duck-fat-roasted fingerling potatoes and Brussels sprouts with bacon marmalade. Enjoy all of that meat with house-made sauces such as peri-peri cream, Madagascar pepper sauce, and a special braai sauce.
Brimstone Woodfire Grill at CityPlace Doral
As its name implies, this restaurant specializes in grilled fare. The Doral location offers baby-back ribs finished with barbecue sauce ($17/$29). The Pembroke Pines location has barbecued pork chops, brined in-house and served with house-made barbecue sauce and mashed potatoes ($27), and a chipotle barbecued pork sandwich ($14), which comes with shaved roast pork, chipotle barbecue sauce, and Swiss cheese on a baguette.
Council Oak Steaks & Seafood at Seminole Hard Rock
As a nod to National Barbecue Month, this steakhouse at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino is offering an appetizer of hickory-smoked bone-in short rib with verjus sauce and dill pickled vegetables for $28.
Located inside the Newport Beachside Hotel & Resort, Kitchen 305 has paired up with Tyler Zager, winner of Food Network's Kids BBQ Championship, to create a new kids' menu applying culinary lessons the 13-year old has learned from food legends Bobby Flay and Marcus Samuelsson. Included on the menu is boneless chicken wings with Tyler's secret barbecue sauce. The regular menu lists mango chipotle barbecued ribs for $31.
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Barbecue skewers prepared on an authentic Japanese robata charcoal grill are delivered sizzling to the table at this modern Japanese hot spot. Pork belly skewers come coated with a sweet miso glaze and topped with ginger, daikon, and scallions for $10.
A James Beard Foundation semifinalist for Best New Restaurant 2017, Kyu offers barbecued ribs ($28) and 12-hour-smoked shichimi-rubbed Wagyu brisket ($36). "Chef's meat" specials, which vary depending upon available ingredients, are offered each Sunday. Featured dishes have included lobster, duck, and ribs.
Offerings include Asian barbecued lamb ribs ($21) made with the restaurant's secret hoisin barbecue sauce and served with a papaya slaw, peanuts, and cilantro.