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Inside Contessa Miami.
Major Food Group

12 Essential Restaurants in the Miami Design District

Where to eat between shopping sprees

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Inside Contessa Miami.
| Major Food Group

The Miami Design District is known for its luxury boutiques, chic galleries, and art-filled showrooms, spanning eighteen square blocks north of the Wynwood neighborhood. But it is also where eating is often not something to do between activities - it is the activity. From Michelin-starred eateries to a vibrant food hall, the ultra-high-end shopping destination has some of the best places to visit for a meal; here are the stops to make when hopping around the Design District.

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Mandolin Aegean Bistro

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Mandolin Aegean Bistro boasts a menu that artfully blends Greek cuisine with Turkish influences, featuring a range of classic dishes such as baked feta, chicken kebabs, kofte, roasted cauliflower, and olive tapenade. The standout entrees include lamb chops and savory orzo pilaf. The predominantly open-air, white-washed ambiance creates a charming atmosphere that’s perfect for sipping on the restaurant’s signature sangria.

Le Jardinier

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Chef Alain Verzeroli’s vegetable-forward establishment, recently awarded its first Michelin star, is a haven for food enthusiasts seeking a sophisticated blend of locally-sourced, seasonal ingredients, into both dishes and cocktails. The chic white and green outdoor dining area, stretching bar, and light-filled interior provide the perfect ambiance for indulging in classic French dishes with a modern twist. Savor the farro risotto with mimolette or miso-glazed tofu with crispy Brussels sprouts and cabbage, accompanied by the house-baked bread. Don’t miss the wagyu bavette au jus, served with broccolini and mushrooms. The kitchen, led by Executive Sous Chef Max McCarthy, also dishes out a multicourse “Discovery Tasting Menu,” accompanied by an optional wine pairing, is an impressive culinary journey that’s rounded up by pastry chef Vanessa Beltra’s delectable sweet endings.

L'Atelier de Joël Robuchon

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Joel Robuchon’s legacy of French haute cuisine is embodied at his Miami Design District outpost, where the late master chef’s culinary prowess is still on display. With a precise approach to cooking and intense flavor combinations, the restaurant has been awarded two Michelin stars - the only restaurant to achieve this distinction in the entire state. The nine-course tasting menu showcases the restaurant’s exceptional range of dishes like the poached black bass, stuffed with truffle mousseline and served with braised endive and orange butter, or the crispy skin duck breast, accompanied by figs, blackberry, and fennel reduction. The interior dining room is an artful blend of dramatic lighting, bold colors, polished rosewood walls, red leather Italian seating, and black-painted ceilings.

Contessa Miami

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Northern Italian cuisine takes center stage at the new two-story restaurant in the Miami Design District, brought to life by the talented Major Food Group team behind Carbone, Sadelle’s, and Dirty French. Indulge in generous portions of delectable pasta dishes and hearty Italian entrees such as grilled branzino and veal Milanese. The restaurant’s ambiance, reminiscent of Lake Como circa 1960, is an exquisite blend of jewel-toned Art Deco marble flooring, Italian Murano light fixtures, and an ideal spot for people-watching. Experience the ultimate in Italian fine dining at this swanky establishment.

Okami, named after “wolf” in Japanese, offers a stunning dining space by Francois Frossard with a sushi bar and second-level lounge overlooking a courtyard. From Cuban-American actors William Levy and Pedro Orihuela, the menu fuses Japanese, Peruvian, and Latin-American influences. Try the succulent pulpo anticuchero (octopus skewers) or grilled hamachi kama starters, and savor black squid rice or misoyaki black cod with truffled black quinoa for the main course.

Tablé by Antonio Bachour

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Open daily, chef Antonio Bachour’s newest culinary venture, a 5,500-square-foot indoor/outdoor French brasserie, offers an all-day dining experience. Dine on beef tartare, lobster flatbread with stracciatella and bacon, a range of sandwiches, pasta, fish, and meat dishes. However, visiting this brasserie would be incomplete without indulging in chef Bachour’s signature confections, including the vanilla bean creme with berries or the camembert cheesecake, both picture-perfect and equally delicious. ``

Michael's Genuine

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Michael Schwartz’s cozy bistro in the Miami Design District, which opened in 2007, still stands as a bastion of American-style cuisine and hospitable service two decades into its run. Michael’s Genuine presents various options, from raw bar dishes to a chilled seafood platter, spiced lamb with charred eggplant, wood-roasted cauliflower, and the famous black truffle pizza. The weekday happy hour, from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m., offers a lively atmosphere and some of the best deals in town, and patrons can bask in the outdoor seating.

Sofia - Design District

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Sofia Design District is the latest restaurant to open in South Florida by the team behind Byblos and Amal. The Toronto import offers an Italian cuisine menu curated by Chef Daniel Roy. The menu boasts Italian classics such as antipasto, pasta, and larger entrees like branzino, wild king prawns, and ribeye. The cocktail menu is also a tribute to Italy’s geography and pop culture history. Sofia’s flamingo pink decor, with ruffled umbrellas, teak furnishings, and pink lacquered pieces, adds to the Italian glam theme.

Cote Miami

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Simon Kim’s elevated take on a Korean barbecue steakhouse presents a diverse menu with dishes like steak tartare and steak and eggs. However, the standout experience at Cote is the Butcher’s Feast, a chef’s selection of four cuts of meat accompanied by a savory egg souffle, two stews, rice, and other Korean sides, all priced at $68 per person. Cote’s menu also showcases an array of prime meat choices, each grilled Korean barbecue-style on smokeless grills at the table. For a truly indulgent experience, try the 10-course steak omakase, priced at $225 per person. Cote’s award-winning beverage program also offers an impressive selection of hard-to-find vintages, large-format bottles, and Magic City-inspired cocktails.

Valerie and Nando Chang, the first brother-sister duo named James Beard Award Rising Star Chef of the Year semifinalists, have joined forces with their father, Fernando “Papa” Chang, to bring Nikkei-inspired cuisine to life. Nestled within a 4,000-square-foot indoor-outdoor establishment, their restaurant boasts an impressive menu of Japanese-Peruvian fusion dishes. Don’t miss the standout tiraditos or the inventive ceviches such as La Punta, featuring tuna, salsa verde, tostones, and leche de tigre blanca. The sushi bar specials and banadito rolls, a tiradito and sushi roll mash-up, are also not to be missed.

Mia Market Miami

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For those seeking a quick caffeine fix or a taste of Middle Eastern cuisine, this food hall is a must-visit during a shopping spree. The scents of rotisserie chicken, beef pho, short rib tacos, and other dishes waft through the interior, creating a feast for the senses. Choosing just one offering is a challenge, but a few options stand out among the crowd. Indulge in the comfort of Dal Plin’s porcini mushroom fettuccine, savor the bold flavors of Coop’s double cheeseburger, or treat yourself to Sushi Yasu Tanaka’s 10-piece omakase feast, priced at $59. Pair your dish with one of the center bar’s well-crafted cocktails for a complete dining experience.

Pura Vida Design District

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Omer and Jennifer Horev’s restaurant is a healthy-food favorite, with diners coming in at all hours of the day looking for a wholesome meal. Walk away energized for another round of shopping after dining on an egg sandwich, a salmon mango bowl pesto or tuna wrap to pair with a superfood smoothie or a juice shot.

Mandolin Aegean Bistro

Mandolin Aegean Bistro boasts a menu that artfully blends Greek cuisine with Turkish influences, featuring a range of classic dishes such as baked feta, chicken kebabs, kofte, roasted cauliflower, and olive tapenade. The standout entrees include lamb chops and savory orzo pilaf. The predominantly open-air, white-washed ambiance creates a charming atmosphere that’s perfect for sipping on the restaurant’s signature sangria.

Le Jardinier

Chef Alain Verzeroli’s vegetable-forward establishment, recently awarded its first Michelin star, is a haven for food enthusiasts seeking a sophisticated blend of locally-sourced, seasonal ingredients, into both dishes and cocktails. The chic white and green outdoor dining area, stretching bar, and light-filled interior provide the perfect ambiance for indulging in classic French dishes with a modern twist. Savor the farro risotto with mimolette or miso-glazed tofu with crispy Brussels sprouts and cabbage, accompanied by the house-baked bread. Don’t miss the wagyu bavette au jus, served with broccolini and mushrooms. The kitchen, led by Executive Sous Chef Max McCarthy, also dishes out a multicourse “Discovery Tasting Menu,” accompanied by an optional wine pairing, is an impressive culinary journey that’s rounded up by pastry chef Vanessa Beltra’s delectable sweet endings.

L'Atelier de Joël Robuchon

Joel Robuchon’s legacy of French haute cuisine is embodied at his Miami Design District outpost, where the late master chef’s culinary prowess is still on display. With a precise approach to cooking and intense flavor combinations, the restaurant has been awarded two Michelin stars - the only restaurant to achieve this distinction in the entire state. The nine-course tasting menu showcases the restaurant’s exceptional range of dishes like the poached black bass, stuffed with truffle mousseline and served with braised endive and orange butter, or the crispy skin duck breast, accompanied by figs, blackberry, and fennel reduction. The interior dining room is an artful blend of dramatic lighting, bold colors, polished rosewood walls, red leather Italian seating, and black-painted ceilings.

Contessa Miami

Northern Italian cuisine takes center stage at the new two-story restaurant in the Miami Design District, brought to life by the talented Major Food Group team behind Carbone, Sadelle’s, and Dirty French. Indulge in generous portions of delectable pasta dishes and hearty Italian entrees such as grilled branzino and veal Milanese. The restaurant’s ambiance, reminiscent of Lake Como circa 1960, is an exquisite blend of jewel-toned Art Deco marble flooring, Italian Murano light fixtures, and an ideal spot for people-watching. Experience the ultimate in Italian fine dining at this swanky establishment.

Ōkami

Okami, named after “wolf” in Japanese, offers a stunning dining space by Francois Frossard with a sushi bar and second-level lounge overlooking a courtyard. From Cuban-American actors William Levy and Pedro Orihuela, the menu fuses Japanese, Peruvian, and Latin-American influences. Try the succulent pulpo anticuchero (octopus skewers) or grilled hamachi kama starters, and savor black squid rice or misoyaki black cod with truffled black quinoa for the main course.

Tablé by Antonio Bachour

Open daily, chef Antonio Bachour’s newest culinary venture, a 5,500-square-foot indoor/outdoor French brasserie, offers an all-day dining experience. Dine on beef tartare, lobster flatbread with stracciatella and bacon, a range of sandwiches, pasta, fish, and meat dishes. However, visiting this brasserie would be incomplete without indulging in chef Bachour’s signature confections, including the vanilla bean creme with berries or the camembert cheesecake, both picture-perfect and equally delicious. ``

Michael's Genuine

Michael Schwartz’s cozy bistro in the Miami Design District, which opened in 2007, still stands as a bastion of American-style cuisine and hospitable service two decades into its run. Michael’s Genuine presents various options, from raw bar dishes to a chilled seafood platter, spiced lamb with charred eggplant, wood-roasted cauliflower, and the famous black truffle pizza. The weekday happy hour, from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m., offers a lively atmosphere and some of the best deals in town, and patrons can bask in the outdoor seating.

Sofia - Design District

Sofia Design District is the latest restaurant to open in South Florida by the team behind Byblos and Amal. The Toronto import offers an Italian cuisine menu curated by Chef Daniel Roy. The menu boasts Italian classics such as antipasto, pasta, and larger entrees like branzino, wild king prawns, and ribeye. The cocktail menu is also a tribute to Italy’s geography and pop culture history. Sofia’s flamingo pink decor, with ruffled umbrellas, teak furnishings, and pink lacquered pieces, adds to the Italian glam theme.

Cote Miami

Simon Kim’s elevated take on a Korean barbecue steakhouse presents a diverse menu with dishes like steak tartare and steak and eggs. However, the standout experience at Cote is the Butcher’s Feast, a chef’s selection of four cuts of meat accompanied by a savory egg souffle, two stews, rice, and other Korean sides, all priced at $68 per person. Cote’s menu also showcases an array of prime meat choices, each grilled Korean barbecue-style on smokeless grills at the table. For a truly indulgent experience, try the 10-course steak omakase, priced at $225 per person. Cote’s award-winning beverage program also offers an impressive selection of hard-to-find vintages, large-format bottles, and Magic City-inspired cocktails.

Itamae

Valerie and Nando Chang, the first brother-sister duo named James Beard Award Rising Star Chef of the Year semifinalists, have joined forces with their father, Fernando “Papa” Chang, to bring Nikkei-inspired cuisine to life. Nestled within a 4,000-square-foot indoor-outdoor establishment, their restaurant boasts an impressive menu of Japanese-Peruvian fusion dishes. Don’t miss the standout tiraditos or the inventive ceviches such as La Punta, featuring tuna, salsa verde, tostones, and leche de tigre blanca. The sushi bar specials and banadito rolls, a tiradito and sushi roll mash-up, are also not to be missed.

Mia Market Miami

For those seeking a quick caffeine fix or a taste of Middle Eastern cuisine, this food hall is a must-visit during a shopping spree. The scents of rotisserie chicken, beef pho, short rib tacos, and other dishes waft through the interior, creating a feast for the senses. Choosing just one offering is a challenge, but a few options stand out among the crowd. Indulge in the comfort of Dal Plin’s porcini mushroom fettuccine, savor the bold flavors of Coop’s double cheeseburger, or treat yourself to Sushi Yasu Tanaka’s 10-piece omakase feast, priced at $59. Pair your dish with one of the center bar’s well-crafted cocktails for a complete dining experience.

Pura Vida Design District

Omer and Jennifer Horev’s restaurant is a healthy-food favorite, with diners coming in at all hours of the day looking for a wholesome meal. Walk away energized for another round of shopping after dining on an egg sandwich, a salmon mango bowl pesto or tuna wrap to pair with a superfood smoothie or a juice shot.

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