If Adam Sandler were to write a song about Passover, he would certainly dedicate a good chunk of it to matzo ball soup. Not only is it delicious, but the soup is synonymous with the Jewish holiday. During Passover, no leavened bread can be eaten, and Jews eat matzo — flat, unleavened bread. Matzo balls are made from a mixture of matzah meal, eggs, water, and often, schmaltz (chicken fat), and are plopped into a bowl of fragrant chicken soup.
With Passover starting on Friday, April 22, we decided to round up a list of Miami's five best places to get matzo ball soup. That said, it should be noted that matzo ball soup is available at all five spots year-round, and trust us — it tastes equally good 365 days of the year.
5. Epicure Gourmet Market & Cafe
Epicure has one of the largest selections of prepared foods in town, and that includes matzo ball soup year-round ($12.95 for a quart). No matter the season, you can always find the soup at the Miami Beach and Sunny Isles Beach locations. It's always consistently good and is made without preservatives. And though some places throw vegetables and/or noodles into their soups, Epicure's version features pure chicken broth with four to five matzo balls.
4. Josh's Deli
There's a reason Jews refer to chicken soup as Jewish penicillin. When done right, it has magical healing powers and warms every bone in your body. Such is the case at Josh's Deli in Surfside, where owner and chef Josh Marcus puts his own spin on many Jewish classics, including matzo ball soup ($9). Instead of using chicken fat, he employs rendered duck fat and adds kale and caramelized onions for a little pizzaz. He also throws in alphabet noodles for fun and ginger beer for some extra sharpness. The matzo balls here are superfluffy, with a hint of sweetness, and large chunks of chicken make the dish filling. Order it and you'll feel better — it's as simple as that.
3. Bagel Bar East
Bagel Bar East is a classic Jewish deli that can cater your entire Passover Sedar if you like. But if you simply want to buy the matzo ball soup and pass if off as your own, no one will tell. Here, you can choose whether you want noodles (they're not Passover-friendly) in your soup ($8.95 for a quart), and a few carrots and small chicken pieces add some heft to the broth. The matzo ball is large and flavorful, and the broth is beautifully seasoned.
2. Roasters' n Toasters
Formerly known as Arnie & Richie's, Roasters' n Toasters is a New York-style deli that offers some of the best bagels in town. The matzo ball soup also happens to be ridiculously good ($7.58 for a small), and the broth is studded with carrots, onions, and celery for those who like a lot of veggies in theirs. There are also generous chunks of chicken and a not-too-soft, not-too-firm matzo ball that's addictive.
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1. Moe's Bagels & Deli
The best things in life are simple, including the no-frills matzo ball soup at Moe's in Aventura. This spacious deli with a massive menu also offers Passover catering services, and it's no wonder — this matzo ball soup ($8.55 for a quart) tastes just like mom's, but better (don't tell her). The broth is free of vegetables and chicken pieces and comes perfectly seasoned. And those matzo balls are fluffy, a teensy bit sweet, and so tender they melt in your mouth. Skip the noodles for Passover and call it a holiday well spent. You won't miss bread after a spoonful of this soup.