A Chill Weekend Guide to Miami
I love Miami and all it’s weirdness. I love the fake fancy vibes, the over the top design, the insane people and the pure fantasy of the place. I’ve been there many times over the years and it still doesn’t seem like a real place where real people live and work. Maybe that’s why I love it so much. It’s an escape from New York, and even though New York is the realest fantasy world there is, Miami still seems like a dream.
Like any major city, there’s a ton of new places constantly opening (and closing) in Miami. We’ve covered Miami pretty extensively on Cliktrips before for WMC, and if you want a big, giant guide about the whole city, check out the nicely curated Vice Guide to Miami.
In the meantime, here’s a quick guide of places to check out during your next non-party Miami weekender.
Where to Drink
The Broken Shaker is the outdoor cocktail bar in the back of the Freehand Hotel on the beach. It’s huge with lots of cute seating by the pool and tropical corners to get lost in, plus a well curated cocktail menu. We made the mistake of going to there on a Friday night while we were waiting for our table at the restaurant 27 in the same building. Don’t do that. It was a madhouse and pretty annoying, but I can imagine it being a sweet place for a drink during the week.
Sweet Liberty is a low key cocktail bar and restaurant on South Beach. In fact, it’s so low key, you kind of forget you’re even on South Beach which has made it my go to stop when I’m wandering around the area trying to figure out where to go next. Nice drinks, a big, long bar and plenty of seating.
The Corner is a great neighborhood bar in Downtown Miami. It kind of borders on being a dive bar or a cocktail lounge and I’m cool with that. Lots of Miami locals hanging out on this not so busy corner downtown. It’s good spot to meet up with friends for some casual drinks.
Lagniappe House is a jazzy, New Orleans style wine bar located in between Wynwood and Midtown. Fun, casual vibes all around and they serve lots of grilled meats and gigantic charcuterie plates that you order at the bar, along with a massive wine list. A great place to go with friends and grab a big table in the backyard and share a few bottles of wines.
Where to Eat
Joe’s Take Away is the easier way to actually eat Joe’s Stone Crabs in Miami. I have to confess I’ve never eaten at Joe’s Stone Crab mainly because I never wanted to wait for a damn table. Then my friend turned me onto Joe’s Take Away. It’s literally right next door to Joe’s and you order at the counter, then grab a table and wait for them to bring you your food in about 20 minutes. Brilliant! It’s not the same fine dining experience as the main restaurant, but perfect after a day of chilling at South Point Park beach.
Mignonette is a casual oyster bar and seafood restaurant in Edgewater. We popped in for a fancy brunch and some lobster deviled eggs and conch fritter benedict. I also recommend checking their daily specials to see what’s fresh.
27 is the locally sourced, internationally inspired restaurant located in the Freehand Hotel. The building use to be someone’s actual house and they’ve kept the communal vibe with all the original rooms intact with small tables and couches tucked into corners and hallways. They serve a mix of Floridian and Cuban favorites plus dishes like kimchee fried rice and short rib. This place gets super busy, so reservations are recommended.
Nautilus is one of the newer hotels on Collins Ave right near the Shore Club, Delano and The Raleigh. It’s been revamped and renovated by Thompson Hotels, but still maintains its groovy Art Deco vibe with a big, white, open lobby with tons of contemporary art on display and an indoor/outdoor restaurant with a nautical vibe. It’s worth popping into the lobby for a drink or a small bite in the restaurant. Tres chic!
La Carreta is my go to Cuban spot in Little Havana where I take friends when they say they want to try Cuban food in Miami. Sure, there are other probably more authentic places, but there’s something about La Carreta that makes everyone happy when they’re there. I love the big, old diner feel and the wooden wagon wheel out front. Plus there’s always some cute, old Cuban ladies drinking pina coladas and mojitos in a booth that just feels right. It’s worth the drive!
Panther Coffee is a Miami based, small batch coffee roaster. The coffee is pretty good and strong, but I think I’m really drawn in by their awesome logo of a black panther draping itself over the name! They have a few locations in Miami, including one in on NW 2nd Ave in the heart of Wynwood, and it’s served throughout the city at various places. Worth seeking out!
Where to Beach
South Pointe Park is a public park and beach at the very southern tip of Miami Beach. The park is large and well maintained with plenty of walking paths, ocean views and grassy areas, bathrooms and a small food stand. There’s also a small promenade that juts out into the ocean where you can watch tons of Instagram chicks posing for sexy pics along the side. On the beach is a lifeguard stand that looks like a lighthouse where you can see tons of awkward newlyweds getting their photos taken. And I kid you not, we also saw a very pregnant lady posing for photos in the surf like some sort of Greek goddess. The people watching alone is worth a day at this beach!