IN GOOD TASTE

Ocean Drive - - Contents - BY CARLA TOR­RES

From an un­der­ground jazz joint and NYC speakeasy to Maine lob­ster and ac­claimed sushi, here are the greatest culi­nary and boozy hap­pen­ings in Mi­ami.

FROM AN UN­DER­GROUND JAZZ JOINT AND NYC SPEAKEASY TO MAINE LOB­STER AND NA­TION­ALLY AC­CLAIMED SUSHI WASH­ING UP ON OUR SHORES, HERE ARE THE GREATEST CULI­NARY AND BOOZY HAP­PEN­INGS IN MI­AMI.

For Fried Chicken and Fish: BLUE RIB­BON

Good news: You no longer have to plan culi­nary get­aways to New York City to sat­isfy your crav­ing for Blue Rib­bon’s ox­tail fried rice and melt-in­y­our-mouth raw fish. That’s be­cause you can now get your fix of fried chicken steeped in wasabi honey and sushi on sushi on sushi right on the sands of South Beach. 336 21st St., Mi­ami Beach, 305-800-0404; bluerib­bon­restau­rants.com

For Up­graded Thai: CAKE THAI

Once upon a time, you had to bring your own beer to Cake Thai, use the restroom next door, and eat your tom kha soup out­side (on the side­walk) be­cause of the lack of A/C. Such is no longer the case at its new out­post in Wyn­wood, where you can have green pa­paya salad, tamarind prawn pad Thai, Ja­panese egg­plant doused in miso and chili, and a fried whole catch of the day that will feed the en­tire ta­ble. Plus, they’re pour­ing beer, cider, wine, and sake (so you can leave yours at home). 180 NW 29th St., Mi­ami, 305-573-5082; cakethaik­itchen.com

For Se­ri­ous Drinkers: EM­PLOY­EES ONLY

For post-din­ner drinks and 2 AM munchies, make your way to famed New York speakeasy Em­ploy­ees Only—look out for the neon PSY­CHIC sign—and knock back their clas­sic Lazy Lover (cachaça, jalapeño-in­fused green char­treuse, lime, and agave Bene­dic­tine). Also: bone mar­row pop­pers, hand-cut steak tartare, and ba­con-wrapped lamb chops. The proper term here is tri­fecta. 1030 Wash­ing­ton Ave., Mi­ami Beach, 786264-3945; em­ploy­eeson­lymi­ami.com

For All that Jazz (and Cock­tails!): FLOYD

The last place you’d ex­pect to find late-night jazz, craft cock­tails, and a sul­try vibe is a clan­des­tine wa­ter­ing hole ad­ja­cent to prime af­ter­hours dis­cotheque Space, but that’s ex­actly part of Floyd’s charm. Other rea­sons to visit are the clas­sic and re­vamped cock­tails (sip on a Manhattan or thyme daiquiri) and un­ex­pected mu­si­cal pro­gram­ming from the team of nightlife and hos­pi­tal­ity veter­ans be­hind Link, Mi­ami Rebels, III Points, and Life in Color. 34 NE 11th St., Mi­ami, 786-618-9447

For Lob­ster Din­ner: LUKE’S LOB­STER

With Joe’s Takeaway clos­ing its doors next month, you’re go­ing to need a suit­able lob­ster roll to get you through Oc­to­ber. En­ter Maine trans­plant Luke’s Lob­ster, bring­ing its sus­tain­able lob­ster, crab, and shrimp rolls—each one pack­ing a quar­ter pound of seafood atop an im­pec­ca­bly but­tered, grid­dled New Eng­land bun—to Brick­ell City Cen­tre. Pro tip: New Eng­land clam chowder makes a mean lob­ster side­kick. 701 S. Mi­ami Ave., Mi­ami, 786-837-7683; lukeslob­ster.com

For Ital­ian Fam­ily Sup­per: JACK’S MI­AMI

Noth­ing says Ital­ian quite like home­cooked spaghetti and Nonna’s (that’s Ital­ian for “Grandma’s”) meatballs in secret gravy sauce—ex­cept maybe a glass of nice red wine and freshly baked gar­lic bread for sop­ping mea­sure. Get it all and then some (chicken Parmesan, braised short ribs, meat loaf, rose­mary roasted pota­toes) at Jack’s. 2426 NE Sec­ond Ave., Mi­ami, 305-640-5507; jacksmi­ami.com

clock­wise from top far left: As­sorted dishes at Cake Thai; the bar scene at Floyd; Floyd’s mint julep; out­side -ack’s; a psy­chic sign leads the way to Em­ploy­ees Only, per­fect for in­ti­mate post-din­ner drinks or late-night bites Ebot­tom far leftf.

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