Today, the process of choosing this year’s stars in the Miami’s restaurant world — the Eater Awards winners for 2019 — continues apace. After fielding many solid ideas from readers during the course of our month-long nomination period, it’s time to narrow the playing field. There are three finalists in three categories: Restaurant of the Year, Design of the Year, and Bar of the Year.
Here they are:
Restaurant of the Year:
Ember — Brad Kilgore’s much-anticipated new American eatery proved it was worthy of all the buzz with its craveable comfort food inspired entrees (the fried chicken topped with caviar butter is a must), well-executed cocktails, and lively atmosphere.
Boia De — This small unassuming restaurant housed in a strip mall is turning out some of city’s most creative new dishes, thanks to culinary duo Luciana Giangrandi and Alex Meyer. Focusing on ingredient-driven dishes menu items like baked clams with ‘njuda; crispy potato skins with burrata and caviar; and beef tartare polenta are some of the standouts.
Hometown BBQ — New York City’s best barbecue has officially made everyone fans of barbecue in Miami with its take on international ‘cue, decadent sides, and unique Allapattah setting.
Design of the Year:
Gregory’s Diner — This upscale diner, inspired by the owner’s own family, boasts an updated take on mid-century modern decor with plenty of personalized touches.
Le Jardinier — A breathtaking space that screams opulence with every detail thoroughly thought out — from the vertical garden, to the plush green seats, to the black marble bar, and the illuminated spiral staircase — no detail is left behind, and it shows.
Tigertail & Mary — Emulating its earthy Coconut Grove neighborhood, Michael Schwartz’s newcomer keeps the chic vibes going throughout the restaurant with textured fabrics and natural materials.
Bar of the Year:
Kaido — This Japanese-style cocktail lounge by Brad Kilgore and Nico de Soto pays homage to Asian flavors and techniques mixed with classic cocktails — all housed in a sexy, over-the-top (but in a good way) setting.
Swizzle Rum Bar & Drinkery — The team behind Employees Only Miami made their triumphant return to the cocktail scene this year with the small but mighty Swizzle, serving up inventive cocktails (and some pretty tasty chicken wings) until 5 a.m. each evening.
Cafe La Trova — The bar that is a tribute to all things Cuba is creating some of the best cocktails in Miami, thanks in part to Miami bartending legend and cantinero Julio Cabrera. Plus, the live music, prime Little Havana location, and food by none other than Michelle Bernstein, certainly make it a standout.
All of these finalists have either opened or come into their own in a new way since we declared the winners last year. All of them were key contributors to making 2019 a great year of eating in Miami. So please, take a moment to give these brave finalists a round of applause. Winners will be crowned, with much fanfare, on December 10, 2019.