When Latin House Burger & Taco Bar originated more than 20 years ago, it wasn’t even a house. Instead, Chef M and his wife, Bella, served their fusion of American and Latin cuisine from the window of one of Miami’s first food trucks, easily eclipsing the still-fledgling industry's typical fried fuzzy dice and mud-flap sandwiches. Nowadays, they've traded their wheels in for chairs, on which patrons sit before savoring plates of tacos, burritos, and tostadas with fillings ranging from cilantro-lime chicken to calamari. As a testament to the eatery's dual cultural influences, Latin House's burgers—usually cooked to a juicy medium-rare—dwell under taco-style toppings such as crema and avocado as well as traditional American accouterments such as bacon and cheese.
Sweetness Bake Shop & Cafe's cupcake list is overwhelming in the best possible way. The treats are made from scratch everyday, the buttercream a slight yellow due to the use of real butter, and the vanilla bean cake rich with Nielsen Massey Madagascar Bourbon Vanilla. But the careful, delicious craftsmanship aside, the sheer number of cupcake options on the menu is enough to floor even the most mild of cupcake enthusiasts. The menu divides into several categories. These include house flavors, such as red velvet, and classic flavors such as maple bacon. Then there are even more whimsical categories such as "candy jar", which includes Twix- and Snickers-flavored cupcakes, "top shelf", which has mojito and tequila sunrise cakes, and "global a go-go" which includes flavors such as tiramisu and churro con chocolate but excludes the flavor of passport stamp.
But Sweetness doesn't stop there. Their menu expands to cover more treats such as ice cream, cake balls and donuts, and cakes. They also cater to the non-sweet tooth with sandwiches and salads for lunch and eggs and pancakes for brunch.
Miyagi Sushi Bar's chefs wrap more than 50 varieties of specialty rolls, complemented by a menu of Japanese mainstays such as teriyaki, tempura, and udon noodles. Inventive, seaweed-bundled creations come drizzled with sauce and garnished with artful bouquets of julienned veggies. The trademark Miyagi roll tops spicy tuna, shrimp, and cream cheese with eel and red fish roe ($14.95), and the Miami Heat roll($13.50) pays homage to the team with breaded shrimp, spicy crab salad, and miniature basketball hoops molded entirely from wasabi. Alternatively, fish-free fare includes yaki niku, new york strip steak stir-fried with a jumble of colorful veggies ($13.95). Diners savor complex flavors in a chic space decorated entirely in blacks and reds, including black-framed mirrors, and shadows outlined with red magic marker.
Smashburger isn't just the name—it's the way chefs, otherwise known as Burger Smashers, cook every burger. First, they form never-frozen, 100% Certified Angus Beef into a giant meatball. Then they season it, place it on a butter-glazed grill, and smash it into a patty. The process caramelizes the beef, locking in flavor while keeping the meat juicy and tender. Each slab is then sandwiched in an artisan bun and is turned into one of an array of standard burgers or locally inspired specialties unique to each market.
This handcrafting approach typifies everything else the restaurant does, from blending handspun shakes to hand painting Smashburger's logo onto every beverage cup. Letting its food stand for itself and relying mostly on word of mouth for advertising, the Smashburger franchise expanded from one restaurant in 2007 to 220 today, with its swift growth from zero to 100 stores making it one of the nation's fastest-growing restaurant companies. This rapid development even caught the attention of Forbes and Inc. along the way.
Fresh off a win for best burger at Florida’s inaugural Burgers & Beer festival in Hollywood, the Pincho Factory’s chefs are back manning the griddles in Miami. Sizzling away are their gourmet burgers, including the Pincho burger, topped with signature potato sticks and secret pink sauce, and the Fritanga burger, with white fried cheese, cabbage slaw, and crema.
Pincho Factory’s hot dogs and fries aren’t to be scoffed at either—the fries were voted the best in South Florida by Local 10, and Burgerbeast.com lauded its Vienna dogs by stating, “Just in case you live under a hot dog rock, this is the good stuff.” The Sunday brunch puts a creative spin on some old standbys, including the banana-bread french toast and red-velvet pancakes topped with peppermint cream-cheese frosting.
When The Melting Pot originally opened in 1975 just outside Orlando, the location was cozy and quaint, but diners had only three options: swiss-cheese fondue, beef fondue, or chocolate fondue. However, as the restaurant grew in popularity, so did its menu selection and atmosphere. The restaurant first expanded four years later under the leadership of a Melting Pot waiter and enterprising college student named Mark Johnston, who teamed up with his brothers Mike and Bob to open a new outpost in Tallahassee. This location grew in reputation to pave the way for future franchise expansion. Today, the company—now owned by the trio of siblings—reigns as the premier fondue, wine, and drink restaurant, stretching across North America with more than 140 restaurants linked by underground tunnels. The restaurant's menu has also ballooned, and patrons can now expect six varieties of hot dipping cheese paired with salads, meats, and molten chocolate.
On a given night, groups of foodies gather around tables to nosh on signature four-course meals, from cheese-fondue appetizers and various salads to steaks and seafood cooked in a choice of healthy broth or oil. Birthday revelers and couples can share decadent evenings at private tables, capping off meals with chocolate desserts that have defined The Melting Pot for decades.
Home of the Sarussi Original, dubbed “colossus” by Travel Channel’s Adam Richman, Sarussi Cafe Subs takes sandwiches to untold new dimensions. Its menu boasts a dozen different signature subs, each of which are made on 8- or 16-inch garlic-buttered rolls, and are packed with enough smoked ham, roasted pork leg, or rib meat to make them 4 inches thick—roughly the same size as a Seawolf-class nuclear submarine.