Steak and Seafood
Joe’s Stone Crab (11 Washington Ave., 305/673-0365, lunch 11:30 a.m.–2 p.m. Tues.–Sat., dinner 5–10 p.m. Mon.–Thurs., 5–11 p.m. Fri.–Sat., 4–10 p.m. Sun., main courses from $11) is so dedicated to their mission of serving fresh stone crab that the restaurant isn’t even open outside of stone-crab season (Oct.–May). However, when the owners do open their doors, navigating the queue of people waiting for entry to this Miami Beach institution can be more daunting than traversing the velvet rope at one of South Beach’s glamorous nightclubs. The effort and the expense are worth the wait, as the crab claws selected by the kitchen are simply some of the finest in the world. There are other excellent seafood selections available as well, but you’ve waited this long to try the crab claws, so why bother?
While it doesn’t have the same reputation as Joe’s, the crab claws and other raw-bar fare offered at Monty’s Raw Bar (300 Alton Rd., 305/673-3444, 5:30–11 p.m. Sun.–Thurs., 5:30 p.m.–midnight Fri.–Sat., main courses from $15) are still quite good, cost about half as much, and don’t require scheduling your entire vacation around them. There’s a no-frills, no-BS attitude at Monty’s that’s quite refreshing for South Beach, and the pool (yes, the pool) can occasionally be the site of some drunken shenanigans.
All the steaks at Prime 112 (112 Ocean Dr., 305/532-8112, lunch noon–3 p.m. Mon.–Fri., dinner 5:30 p.m.–midnight Sun.–Thurs., 5:30 p.m.–1 a.m. Fri.–Sat., main courses from $25) are dry-aged at least three weeks and served as classic cuts—filet mignon, New York strip, rib eye, and Porterhouse—in the classic steakhouse style, including $12 potatoes and $13 sides. However, Prime 112 doesn’t feel like a stuffy old-school steakhouse with its comfortable modern decor and a large variety of nonsteak dishes, including seafood, chicken and waffles, and Kobe-beef hot dogs.
Although Grillfish (1444 Collins Ave., 305/538-9908, 11:30 a.m.–11 p.m. Mon.–Sat., lunch from $10, dinner from $20) only has one location in South Beach, it feels more like a franchise-ready concept than a truly unique dining experience. The expansive list of mojito concoctions seems more thoughtful than the menu, but the fish is fresh and the preparations are solid if somewhat uninspired.
© Jason Ferguson from Moon Florida, 1st Edition