The best restaurants in South Beach, Miami, range from fine dining and exclusive experiences to beachfront cafés, casual eateries, swanky resort lounges, and romantic waterfront restaurants. Framed by the art deco décor of Ocean Drive and the sparkling waters of Biscayne Bay and the Atlantic Ocean, South Beach delivers a gourmet culinary scene backed with glamourous nightlife, modern art galleries, and other cultural connections.
With so many “Miami” and “Beach” names, it can get confusing as to what is what and which is where. Let’s take a quick geography lesson. South Beach is part of the city of Miami Beach, which is a separate entity from the city of Miami (located on the mainland to the west of the island of Miami Beach).
Miami Beach is accessible to mainland Miami via the MacArthur Causeway or further north at the Venetian Causeway Bridge, which becomes Dade Boulevard upon exiting the bridge. Either way you go, it’s an awesome island escape for families, singles, or groups looking for a delicious meal.
Still with us? Okay, Miami Beach (about nine miles long and one mile wide) consists of North Beach, Mid Beach, and South Beach. South Beach is the southernmost, duh, section. It begins south of Dade Boulevard and stretches for about 2.5 miles. South Beach is the most famous area and typically gets all the attention with its glamorous vibe, celebrity presence, and art deco details.
South Beach is the most touristy and popular area on the island of Miami Beach. This swanky seaside scene offers fresh seafood, farm-fresh sides, and other local ingredients combined with citrus garnishes and accents of Spanish and Cuban flavors and fragrances.
You may even see a celebrity or two as heavy hitters like Gloria Estefan, Shakira, Shaquille O’Neill, Phil Collins, Dwayne Wade, Ricky Martin, Lenny Kravitz, and CSI: Miami’s David Caruso (along with many others) have all lived or currently live in the South Beach area.
With so many food and drink options in South Beach, it can be tough to narrow it down (especially when you’re already borderline hangry and traveling with indecisive types). We’ve collected a list of some of the best restaurants in South Beach to keep the peace among your crew. We can’t guarantee you’ll be dining with Shakira, Shaq, or Lenny, but let us know if you do!
Show Table of Contents
- Best Restaurants in South Beach, Miami
- 1. Stubborn Seed
- 2. The Place Restaurant & Mojito Bar
- 3. Joe’s Stone Crab
- 4. Azabu Miami Beach
- 5. Yardbird Table & Bar
- 6. Gianni’s at the Former Versace Mansion
- 7. Casa Isola Osteria
- 8. Carbone
- 9. Orilla Bar & Grill
- 10. RED South Beach
- 11. Abbalé Telavivian Kitchen
- 12. Stiltsville Fish Bar
- 13. Las Olas Café
- 14. Toni’s Sushi Bar
- 15. Smith & Wollensky
- 16. Orange Blossom
- Are there any Michelin-starred restaurants in South Beach, Miami?
- Are there any beachfront dining options in South Beach, Miami?
- What are the best South Beach restaurants for a romantic dinner?
- Are there any food tours in South Beach, Miami?
Best Restaurants in South Beach, Miami
1. Stubborn Seed
Address: 101 Washington Avenue, Miami Beach, Florida
Headed by Top Chef winner Jeremy Ford, Stubborn Seed is one of the best places to eat in South Beach. The sleek and contemporary restaurant features an industrial aesthetic with hints of art deco design and uber-cool leather booths. It also boasts a Michelin star and a coveted James Beard Foundation Award nomination.
Located in the affluent South of Fifth (or SoFi) neighborhood, the menu offers an eclectic array of seasonal and evolving choices such as truffle chicken, oysters, local fish, herb-crusted wagyu, and crunchy truffle bravas. Dessert features the unique sweetness of beignets with Mexican chocolate and strawberry panna cotta.
The Hilton Bentley Miami/South Beach is just a few blocks from this South of Fifth restaurant and offers excellent views of the waterfront and the art deco district. Featuring all-suite guest rooms with kitchens or kitchenettes, the elegant hotel has a swimming pool, a full-service spa, and a restaurant, Santorini by Giorgios, that serves traditional and modern Greek cuisine.
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2. The Place Restaurant & Mojito Bar
Address: 720 Ocean Drive, Miami Beach, Florida 33139
Inside the boutique Beacon South Beach Hotel, you’ll find the beachy casual The Place Restaurant & Mojito Bar. Choose from steaks, salads, salmon, and coconut shrimp while sipping margaritas and mojitos. Dine indoors or on the patio.
This is one of the best places to eat in South Beach due to its beachfront location, excellent service, and laid-back vibe. Plus, if you’re already staying at the trendy Beacon Hotel, you won’t need a rental car to get there.
Miami Beach has some of the best beach resorts in Florida. The European-inspired Savoy Hotel & Beach Club is nearby. Tropical plants, botanical prints, and natural bamboo, rattan, and sisal textures bring a calm and neutral touch.
Hotel amenities include a restaurant, a secluded courtyard, two outdoor pools, a fitness center, and private beach access. Spacious suites offer separate seating areas, coffee makers, and luxurious furnishings.
3. Joe’s Stone Crab
Address: 11 Washington Avenue, Miami Beach, Florida 33139
The always popular Joe’s Stone Crab opened in 1913 as a small lunch counter on the beach by a guy named, what else, Joe. The joint was popular for its fish sandwiches and fries.
If the rest of the name didn’t alert you, the eatery is known for its stone crabs. In addition to all the stone crabs and king crab legs you could possibly ever eat, Joe’s offers Chesapeake Bay fried oysters, Miami-style fish & chips, hashed brown potatoes, seafood paella, sea scallops, burgers, and New York strip.
The massive structure has been mentioned in Golden Girls, There’s Something About Mary, and the Ian Fleming novel Goldfinger, where James Bond had the best meal of his life (it was known as Bill’s on the Beach in the movie). Expect a wait (Joe’s doesn’t take reservations) and check the hours beforehand. The restaurant is open from October through May (stone crab season).
During summer, the crabs are frozen, not fresh, and the hours are limited. The restaurant closes for two months in August. Speaking of Bond (…James Bond), Miami Beach’s Fontainebleau Hotel is featured in Goldfinger’s opening aerial shot that follows the credits. Scenes from Thunderball and License to Kill were also filmed at the Fontainebleau, not to mention The Bodyguard and Scarface.
This Mid-Beach hotel makes a terrific choice for luxury accommodations near the South Beach area. Glamorous and stylish with modern amenities, the 22-acre hotel has a spa, a pool, nine restaurants, eight bars, a fitness center, meeting rooms, and 24-hour room service.
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4. Azabu Miami Beach
Address: 161 Ocean Drive, Miami Beach, Florida 33139
Taking its name from the Azabu district in Tokyo, Japan, the restaurant brings innovation and a unique experience to South Beach. Food is prepared on authentic Japanese grills and includes selections such as stone-seared American wagyu, lobster tempura, wasabi beef skewers, a spicy tuna roll, and even tuna pizza.
Three connected but separate spaces live within the venue. All are united by food, drink, and exceptional service. The first is a dining room with an open kitchen.
Then, there’s The Den (which has one Michelin star), where Tokyo-trained sushi chefs prepare creative sushi, nigiri, and sashimi platters. Bar Azabu is a classic cocktail bar serving sake and more than 40 whiskey varieties.
5. Yardbird Table & Bar
Address: 1600 Lenox Avenue, Miami Beach, Florida 33139
Open for lunch, brunch, and dinner, Yardbird Table & Bar stays true to its name with a selection of Southern comfort food and beverages. Choose from a fried green tomato BLT, classic buttermilk biscuits, deviled eggs, lemon basil pasta, shrimp and grits, chicken and waffles, and sweet tea braised short ribs. Check out the bourbon bar and its curated collection of more than 60 varieties of bourbon.
Yardbird is near Flamingo Park and the West Ave Studios. Rooms at West Ave Studios have kitchenettes with a fridge, an oven, and a microwave. Attractions nearby include LIK Fine Art Miami, the Holocaust Memorial, and New World Center.
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6. Gianni’s at the Former Versace Mansion
Address: 1116 Ocean Drive, Miami Beach, Florida 33139
If there’s one address that’s synonymous with South Beach, it’s the glamorous Ocean Drive. Located in The Villa Casa Casuarina, the former Versace mansion (home of Gianni Versace), Gianni’s is a luxurious retreat complete with bronze statues, a gold-lined pool, fountains, frescoes, mosaics, and Greek and Roman décor.
The upscale menu includes Italian Mediterranean seafood such as prime filet mignon, spinach and ricotta ravioli, lobster spaghetti, Australian lamb chops, and Chilean sea bass. Dine poolside or in the historic dining room.
Now for a little history lesson (you knew that had to happen with the mention of the name Versace). Known as Casa Casuarina, the mansion was built in 1930 by Alden Freeman (his father, the treasurer of The Standard Oil Trust of Rockefeller fame, left a sizable sum when he passed away).
Freeman was inspired by the Alcazar de Colon in Santo Domingo. The mansion originally had 24 apartment-style rooms. It went through several owners after Freeman passed away (while remaining largely an apartment property).
Versace bought the property in 1992, along with the hotel next door (which he demolished and added a pool, a garden, and the south wing). He turned the 24 rooms into ten large suites. After Versace was killed on the front steps in 1997, it was empty for several years before being used as a private residence, an events venue, and a hotel.
In 2009, the property opened as a restaurant called The Villa by Barton G. There are also hotel rooms, and if you’re a guest, yes, you can swim in the gold-lined pool.
I highly recommend walking or driving by this gorgeous structure even if you don’t dine there (you can’t go inside unless you are dining or staying there). If you do want to dine, reservations are required.
7. Casa Isola Osteria
Address: 1418 20th Street, Miami Beach, Florida 33139
Five-time James Beard Foundation Award nominee Chef José Mendin brings tavern-style Italian dining to the Sunset Harbour neighborhood. It’s situated alongside Mendin’s Pubbelly Sushi in the space that used to be Pubbelly Noodle Bar (Pubbelly Sushi and Pubbelly Noodle merged into one concept a few years back).
With fresh local ingredients and a scratch-made approach, the menu offers items like pumpkin ravioli, chicken marsala, tuna carpaccio, and linguini Mendini. Head out for happy hour when the restaurant offers half-off all cocktails, beer, and wine and features several appetizer specials.
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Address: 49 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach, Florida 33139
Founded by the team of Mario Carbone, Jeff Zalaznick, and Rich Torrisi, Carbone is also in New York City, Dallas, and Las Vegas. Drake rapped about getting the last table at Carbone – albeit he was probably referring to the NYC location, but still, the dude clearly had the right idea. Carbone is a good night out.
The South Beach menu offers an Italian American selection of pasta (including the famous spicy rigatoni) seafood, an amazing Caesar salad, and steak as well as a large wine and cocktail list and an even larger spirit list.
Do we really need more than 15 brands of tequila and Scotch? Yes. Yes, we do. See and be seen while enjoying a vesper, Gibson, old-fashioned, or Manhattan.
Carbone Miami Beach is found in the South of Fifth neighborhood and is one of the best places to eat in South Beach.
9. Orilla Bar & Grill
Address: 426 Euclid Avenue, Miami Beach, Florida 33139
Situated near the Collins Avenue Shopping Area and the Meridian Hotel, Orilla Bar & Grill offers a tropical atmosphere (Seriously, I want all the plants!) with indoor and outdoor seating. The original Orilla is in Buenos Aires, and Chef Fernando Trocca has maintained much of its culinary flavors and textures while mixing in local ingredients.
The menu offers beef empanadas, bucatini with shrimp, Chilean sea bass, a Wagyu cheeseburger, and filet mignon. Don’t fill up too much, as the dessert menu offers baked Alaska, key lime pie, flan, and tropical Pavlova with acai and hibiscus. Actually, who needs dinner? Give me all the desserts!
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10. RED South Beach
Address: 801 South Pointe Drive, Miami Beach, Florida 33139
Hip, swanky, and upscale, RED South Beach is one of the best South Beach Miami nightlife options. A custom wall mural, exquisite art, and rich colors and textures add flair to the flavors and fragrances of the scratch kitchen concept.
Chef Peter Vauthy leads this traditional steakhouse experience with modern twists on seafood, steak, and pasta. Selections include oysters Rockefeller, tuna tataki, truffle whipped potatoes, wild king salmon, Maine lobster with aglio e olio, carbonara with Gulf shrimp, and porterhouse, New York strip, and ribeye steaks.
Originally opened in 2008, RED moved to its current location in 2021. It has a 3,000-square-foot outdoor dining area and a large indoor dining area. There’s a private dining room, a wine wall, and a glass-enclosed VIP room.
The restaurant has won Wine Spector’s Award of Excellence for 11 consecutive years and shared space on Zagat’s list of eight sexiest bars and restaurants in Miami in 2015.
11. Abbalé Telavivian Kitchen
Address: 864 Commerce Street, Miami Beach, Florida 33139
Positioned in the trendy South of Fifth neighborhood, the casually elegant Abbalé Telavivian Kitchen offers Mediterranean and Tel Aviv choices as well as a Sunday brunch menu. The eclectic menu combines the Syrian, Latin, and Moroccan heritages of entrepreneur Omer Horev and Executive Chef Sam Gorenstein. Traditional recipes are given a modern touch and prepared with ingredients like grain, dairy, and fruit that come from local farms.
Choose from selections such as falafels, grilled octopus shashlik, roasted branzino with pistachio tahini, and lamb kofta pita. Then there are pastries, pitas, Jerusalem bagels, and baklava.
Spend time sipping mimosas, fresh juice, Moroccan mint tea, cortado, and macchiato. In fact, some could make a whole day of it with offerings like that (that would be me, I’m some).
Abbalé is open for lunch, dinner, and all-day Sunday brunch. There’s also a Shabbat Under the Stars dinner on Fridays with family-style dining.
This is a wonderful way to enjoy time with a group of friends traveleing together. There are two seatings: one at 6 p.m. and one at 8:30 p.m.
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12. Stiltsville Fish Bar
Address: 1787 Purdy Avenue, Miami Beach, Florida 33139
Popular among locals and visitors, Stiltsville Fish Bar is located in the Sunset Harbour neighborhood. It’s a bit north of South Beach proper, just off the Venetian Causeway Bridge, but it’s worth the extra few minutes to get to. Stiltsville is one of the best South Beach Miami dining options for an amazing lunch, dinner, or weekend brunch. Check out the Maurice Gibb Memorial Park while you’re there (the Gibbs brothers recorded many of their albums in a studio nearby).
If the nautical-inspired décor of Stiltsville doesn’t alert you to the menu, the bathtub filled with ice and fresh fish will (you can hand-pick your own fish, lobster, or other daily catch). This Sunset Harbour restaurant serves local seafood and Caribbean-style drinks in a casual and laid-back atmosphere.
Executive chefs Jeff McInnis and Janine Booth, both former contestants on Bravo’s Top Chef, pair fresh local seafood like Florida stone crab, snapper, and salad with citrus-infused salads, herb-grilled vegetables, and Caribbean conch fritters and coconut shrimp. There are also burgers and fried chicken dishes if your taste leans to the land.
For brunch, consider strawberries n’ cream French toast, eggs Benedict with crab cakes and Old Bay hollandaise sauce, and crab truffle omelets. Now, excuse me while I catch a flight to South Beach!
13. Las Olas Café
Address: 644 6th Street, Miami Beach, Florida 33139
Did someone say all-day breakfast? Count us in. For Cuban sandwiches, all-day breakfast, and fresh-squeezed orange juice, head to Las Olas Café.
The casual eatery combines classic Latin recipes with modern techniques and local ingredients. The menu features a range of burgers, paninis, rice bowls, and empanadas filled with chicken, pork, shellfish, or fresh veggies. Don’t forget a papaya, coconut, or mango smoothie for a tropical touch.
With decorative tile, tropical touches, designer furnishings, and gorgeous interior garden space, the Goodtime Hotel makes an excellent choice for a romantic getaway, a solo retreat, or a couples vacation. It’s near Las Olas Café and many other top spots to eat in South Beach Miami.
The Jewish Museum of Florida and Lummus Park Beach are nearby. Guest rooms are decorated in punchy stripes, modern art, and designer textiles. Enjoy private parking, free parking, a fitness center, and a restaurant.
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14. Toni’s Sushi Bar
Address: 1208 Washington Avenue, Miami Beach, Florida 33139
Along with Florida’s freshest ingredients, Toni’s Sushi Bar serves the best sushi and traditional Japanese cuisine. The first Japanese restaurant in South Beach, Toni’s Sushi Bar was established in 1987. Stepping inside this immaculate restaurant, you can just feel the legacy and the pride.
Along with a wide variety of vibrant sushi rolls and sashimi, menu offerings include wagyu beef gyoza, spicy tuna, shrimp tempura, ramen, grilled Atlantic salmon, and New York strip garlic steak. Save room for Thai doughnuts, mochi ice cream, and tempura ice cream with caramel sauce at this South Beach location.
15. Smith & Wollensky
Address: 1 Washington Avenue, Miami Beach, Florida 33139
A sister site to the original New York City restaurant location that opened in 1977 (there are also locations in Boston, Chicago, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, London, and Taipei), Smith & Wollensky is the best South Beach Miami food scene to see and be seen. The restaurant overlooks the ocean in South Pointe Park at the Government Cut channel on the southern tip of the island. Watch luxury yachts, cruise ships, and charter fishing boats come and go from the outdoor deck.
Celebrate an anniversary, romantic occasion, or other special events with an award-winning Napa Valley wine and premium steak or seafood. Choose from prime and dry-aged steak such as a coffee and cocoa-rubbed filet, a petit NY strip, a dry-aged T-bone, and a prosciutto-wrapped filet mignon. Other options include crab cakes, chilled Maine lobster tail, a chicken sandwich with chipotle aioli, and a Cajun burger with red onion marmalade.
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16. Orange Blossom
Address: 2000 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach, Florida 33139
Rustic in décor, Orange Blossom is located within the Boulan South Beach. It’s open for breakfast, brunch, and dinner and offers a variety of vegetarian options and specially designed cocktails. Choose from fresh market salads, stuffed avocado with shrimp salad, quinoa fried rice, turkey burgers, free-range chicken, ahi tuna steak, gazpacho, and cream of vegetables.
Afterward, check out Collins Park and its array of shops, gardens, and entertainment venues. The Bass, a historic contemporary art museum with artifacts, a sculpture garden, films, and lectures. Current, previous, and upcoming exhibits have included Ugo Rondinone Miami Mountain, Botticelli & the Ghirlandaio, From Picasso to Koons: The Artist as Jeweler, and Sylvie Fleury Eternity Now.
Are there any Michelin-starred restaurants in South Beach, Miami?
Azabu Miami Beach and Stubborn Seed are Michelin-starred restaurants in South Beach.
Are there any beachfront dining options in South Beach, Miami?
One Ocean 7 Café and The Place Restaurant & Bar offer excellent beachfront views.
What are the best South Beach restaurants for a romantic dinner?
Gianni’s at the former Versace Mansion and Smith & Wollensky are wonderful choices for a romantic dinner in South Beach.
Are there any food tours in South Beach, Miami?
- About the Author
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Sandy is a freelance writer based in Richmond, Virginia. Her specialties range from hotels, dining, beaches, and yacht charters to theme parks, urban settings, mountain getaways, and other fun spots. In addition to Via Travelers, her work appears at AFAR, PierShare, Cozymeal, and more.