Accomplished chefs trained in India and London whip up Indian dishes in Mint Leaf’s Coral Gables and Miami kitchens. The restaurant imports specialty ingredients straight from India, as well as equipment such as granite stone grinders from Mysore, which help make batter for dosas, uthappams (similar to pizza), and other dishes. House-made cottage cheese mixes with a spinach puree in the saag paneer, and curry leaves and mustard seeds mingle with fish filets in the macchili curry. Nine varieties of flatbreads, from plain naan to kulcha stuffed with onions and coriander, scoop up bites of chicken tikka masala and lamb korma. Bollywood music videos play in the background as customers dine amid Mint Leaf’s Indian art and sculptures, including carved stone statues of the god of bobbleheads.
There's a reason CBS Miami hails Maroosh Mediterranean Restaurant as one of the area's Top Spots for Middle Eastern Food—in fact, there are many. First and foremost is the food: everything from Lebanese and Armenian sausages to charcoal-grilled skewers of lamb and crispy falafel with sides of tahini. The chefs go the extra mile to make the meals as authentic as possible, too, pairing dishes with sides of homemade yogurt and topping their basmati rice with roasted almonds.
Yet when recreating the Middle East, Maroosh Mediterranean Restaurant doesn't just stop with the cuisine. The dining room's vibrant collection of pan-Mediterranean accents includes bright red and purple fabrics hanging from the ceiling, an ornate metal chandelier, and framed paintings of musicians and belly dancers. Those paintings even echo reality—the eatery invites belly dancers to perform for private parties, where they mesmerize families and re-inspire chiropractors who've lost their passion.
As a community, Green Monkey is thriving. Across its three locations, it's taken on dozens of instructors who lead more than 36 types of classes, including meditation classes that rely on breathing techniques and silent affirmations to quiet the mind. As if all those class varieties weren't enough, the instructors also put together frequent workshops, many of which teach specific skills such as handstands and inverted backbends.
At Kabob Shack, Chef Ray's goal for each day is to bring the diverse, nuanced flavors of India to those looking for a quick meal to-go. He achieves this feat by wrapping up traditional Indian staples—such as paneer, tandoori chicken, and lamb kabobs—into a fluffy roti or paratha bread, so they can be carried or handed off to a relay teammate. He also adds these house-grilled and spiced meats to beds of basmati rice or mixed greens to create meals that are both portable and healthy. The flavors of Indian spices are complemented by any of the four house chutneys, which range from sweet and spicy, as in the red chili chutney, to herby, like the chutney made with mint, cilantro, and green chilies.