Breakfast has long been regarded the most important meal of the day, but we still tend to discount its importance (except maybe at Sunday brunch). But breakfast, unlike dinner, is a great time to meet friends or business associates for a meal that has less formality. Unlike dinner at a dimly lit restaurant with wine, breakfast places are bright, friendly, and welcoming -- and usually come with endless pots of steaming hot coffee. Besides, who doesn't like a meal with a side of bacon?
With that in mind, we found it difficult to pare down our list of favorite breakfast spots to ten. We'd like to hear your favorite place for first meal.
10. Coral Bagels
The decibel level is high at any given day of the week at this little breakfast joint off US1. Filled with the same regulars from Coral Gables and Coconut Grove, Coral Bagels is the place to meet friends, gossip about local politics, and have a simple plate of eggs and a freshly made bagel without breaking the bank. Two eggs with the best breakfast potatoes we've ever had, comes with a bagel of your choice and unlimited coffee with plenty of cream. If you can stand the sound of crashing dishes, eat here.
9. Buena Vista Deli
We love a simple breakfast of well baked breads and good coffee and Buena Vista Deli delivers just that. The fresh baked flaky, buttery croissants come fresh out of the oven reminding one of Paris ... or heaven. Paired with fresh fruit and coffee, it's called the 7 a.m. breakfast and it's $4.95. We call it the perfect start to a very good morning.
8. Solo Cafe and Patisserie
Sure, you have to go into the lobby of one of Miami Beach's most iconic monolith hotels (the Fontainebleau) to get here, but rest assured the voyage is worth it. If you're looking for killer doughnuts, cinnamon buns, and a good latte, Solo is your place. Doughnut flavors change every day, but look for exotics like Key Lime or classics like cinnamon or chocolate ($2.45) and a daily pastry special with coffee is an affordable $5.95. Plus, you can watch the beautiful people stroll by on their way to the pool, while you sip your caffeine.
7. S&S Diner
Remember the Twilight Zone episode where the grown man steps back in time to a town from long ago called Willoughby? We believe S&S Diner is the porthole to that other dimension. The horseshoe-shaped lunch counter is a page out of Life magazine circa 1955 -- and so are the prices. Three bucks buys you a breakfast of two eggs, potatoes, and toast. Add coffee or tea and your bill comes out to $3.40 Today's breakfast at yesterday's prices is the reason why S&S makes our list.
6. Sweet Point Bakery & Cafe
Don't let the name fool you. There's more to Sweet Point than muffins and cookies. Start your day with a power breakfast of oatmeal with salted almonds and bananas ($4.95), perfect after a long run or workout, or indulge yourself with the skirt steak and eggs, served with potatoes and fruit ($13). Great service seals the deal for this midtown bistro.
5. Jackson Soul Food
A lot of Miami restaurants serve grits for breakfast. Instant, tasteless grits, that is. Which is why you need to have breakfast at Jackson Soul Food. The boil fish and grits, served on the weekends ($10.50) is a revelation, but if you come during the week, you can get some catfish and grits ($7.75), liver and grits ($6.95), or smothered pork chops and grits ($6.95). Sure they have eggs and pancakes, but trust us -- have some real soul food for breakfast. This is as far from SoBe as you can get while still in Miami-Dade County.
4. A La Folie
If your idea of a good time is having a warm pain au chocolat ($2.50) and a giant cafe au lait ($4), while sitting in a garden-like setting while Edith Piaf sings, then A La Folie is your escape in the middle of Miami Beach. We come here for the oversized bowls of nos chocolat (if you don't have to work, we suggest spiking it with a little Grand Marnier) ($4-7). Savory and sweet crepes are also winners. Make your way to the Española Way location for a more picturesque breakfast under old shade trees.
3. Harriet & Bob's Bagel Cove
Calling all New Yawkers! Now that Wolfie's and Rascal House closed in Miami , where can you go for a good lox platter with a bagel and schmear? Harriet & Bob's Bagel Cove in Aventura has your choice of lox or nova ($10.99) appetizer platter, served with sliced onions and tomatoes. Added bonus -- they actually know the difference between the two (hint: the lox, from a salmon's belly, is saltier). Craving some whitefish salad or challah french toast? They've got that too.
2. News Cafe
Sure, it's turned into a tourist trap, but News Cafe is still the most iconic place to breakfast on Miami Beach. Since it's open 24 hours, we suggest waking up with the roosters, and hitting Gianni Versace's favorite place to get a coffee and a paper -- before the Jersey Shore crowd wake up from their Mansion-induced coma.
1. GreenStreet Cafe
At some point you'll meet everyone you've ever known having breakfast at
GreenStreet Cafe in Coconut Grove. Part restaurant, part neighborhood hub, GreenStreet has such a loyal following, that some people have eaten breakfast here every day for years straight -- even claiming their own tables (and wait staff). No surprises here -- just generous portions of your favorite breakfast foods -- omelettes ($8-11.50), pancakes, and homemade muffins ($3.20) -- all served with a side of community.
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