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Miami is home to a number of perfectly fabulous restaurants where you can watch the passing show at great cafes, for example on Ocean Drive each Sunday during the champagne brunch service where you can grab a table and watch the wicked antics of these larger than life performers... that's if you don't mind an occasional false eyelash in your omelette (just kidding. Sittings at 11:30am and 2pm. Here are some other great Miami dining experiences we've found...
Magnum Restaurant & Lounge / 709 NE 79 Street / After a long stint thrilling diners at his eponymous cafe on Lincoln Road Mall, Jeffrey Landsman has launched a successful supperclub near the Biscayne Corridor where dim lighting, cozy red booths and a chummy waitstaff serve up what is decidedly the best fried chicken in town. If three crisp pieces with sides of veggies and mashed potatoes don't put you in the mood, the sultry lounge singer just might do the trick.
Hakkasan at the Fontainebleau hotel at 4441 Collins Avenue where you can try the Dim sum which may be a tough sell in the early morning hours when coffee and cake seems best suited to early risers, but tender Chinese dumplings, tea-smoked meats and stir-fried beans make a mighty fine brunch after noon at the Fontainebleau's elegant eatery where the Miami Spice menu offers a belly full of the restaurants best bites for a very reasonable $22 per person. Valet parking validated with your check.
Mai Tardi / 163 NE 39 Street / Miami is not known for promptness so it is no wonder this Italian cafe (named for a place "where time is not of the essence") is a perfect spot for a slow Friday night hang out. Fridays from 5-7:30pm a DJ spins for happy hour on the 4,000 square foot patio where drinks are under $6 and tapas are free. After a while, order from the menu and linger over supper until the spirit moves you to move on.
Wynwood Kitchen & Bar / 2550 NW Second Avenue / While a juicy burger and a beer are fast becoming the number one dish in South Florida - from Danny Meyer's Shake Shack to Daniel Boulud's db burger at the Bistro Moderne Downtown - we're partial to the lamb burger currently on the menu at this hip hideaway in Wynwood that was packed to the rafters during Art Basel but now enjoys a quieter run up to the holiday season.
LTSteak / 1440 Ocean Drive, Miami Beach / Chef Laurent Tourondel's celebrated restaurant serves prime beef, sparkling tuna tartare, steamy popovers and classic to a preppy looking crowd who gather on the terrace to toast the sunset overlooking Ocean Drive. Miles away from the hype and spandex of Prime 112, this South Beach steakhouse offers a more relaxing vibe and better food than most of the Kobe heavy competition.