Miami’s A Mecca For Waterfront Dining

Living in Miami my entire life, (yes, I’m a native which always baffles people when they ask me because there aren’t many of us), it’s never been difficult to find a waterfront restaurant, be it casual or elegant. Honestly, the casual ones are much cooler and offer pretty much the same view.

One of my all-time faves is Scotty’s Landing in Coconut Grove where the grub and atmosphere are downhome and the view is absolutely breathtaking. It’s great for lunch or dinner but I prefer it for lunch. Finding a table that’s as close to the water as possible is key, although any spot here is good really. But lounging in a chair, noshing on their fresh grilled dolphin sandwich and looking out on the water as the boats go by is the way to go. Of course, a cold draft beer is the perfect beverage to accompany this meal.

On South Beach, Smith & Wollensky is the polar opposite, a grand steakhouse that underwent a massive renovation a few years ago and is even better now, which seemed impossible. Now this place is not cheap, their main draw is beef here, although they’ve got seafood and other choices, but it’s worth it once just for the experience. After all, a South Beach view is a bonus and perk.

Seems like steakhouses are going to be a big part of this post because I recently went to Chophouse Miami in Downtown and was floored by their menu and also their views. A hotbed for NBA stars from the Miami Heat and other celebrities that pop through town, the view of Biscayne Bay and the prime location make this a must stop spot, even if it’s just to sit al fresco and enjoy a cocktail during their great happy hour. Their food is pretty unique too with a menu that boasts lots of unusual game entrees like venison, bison, ostrich and kangaroo but for the non-adventurous types, beef’s the way to go. Nearby is Scalina which is at One Miami, a new Italian restaurant that boasts even more impressive bayviews, thanks to the floor to ceiling wall of windows. Their top-notch chef who honed his skills in New York kitchens is serving up plenty of classics sure to please any Italian food lover.Smith & Wollensky

And for longevity alone and an ultimate view that never changes there’s the Rusty Pelican on Key Biscayne and Monty’s in Coconut Grove. Monty’s is the place where just about every Miamian has been at least once, it’s just never lost its popularity and is a standard go to place. Oh, and the yachts and sailboats, those are always there for the viewing. They’ve got good happy hour specials too with cheapo prices on raw bar items and drinks. And by far the most breathtaking view of all is at the Rusty Pelican. This place pretty much hangs out over the water and has wraparound views of Biscayne Bay thanks to those glorious windows. The best time to go here is for brunch. Other times it’s nothing like Scotty’s or even Smith and Wollensky but sipping a drink and enjoying the view here, especially at sundown, well it’s what Miami’s all about.


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