Warm weather and gorgeous waters — ocean, bay, waterways — make Miami the perfect place to enjoy outdoor dining and stunning views. These fine eateries serve unrivaled sights of the city from every angle and, of course, exquisite food. Here’s the scoop on three local favorites with the best-looking vantage points (and their best-looking dishes) to feast your eyes on now.
Red Fish Grill, Matheson Hammock Park
Hidden in one of Miami’s oldest parks, this historic 1930s one-story coral-and-stone structure can only be reached by a single winding road edged by mangroves. The terrace is surrounded by light-strung palm trees and lush wildlife with unrivaled panoramic views of the beautiful bay. The romantic ambience and secluded location will make you feel like you’ve been whisked away to a magical tropical isle. Here you’ll find freshly caught fish that is simply and tastefully prepared. A few local favorites are the pan-fried red snapper with shaved fennel, spiced mahi mahi topped with pineapple salsa and fennel-seared yellowfin tuna. There’s also turf-bound options such as lemon herb-roasted chicken and grilled Black Angus hanger steak.
Azul, Brickell Key
Situated in Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star Mandarin Oriental, Miami on exclusive Brickell Key, Five-Star Azul sets the bar for world-class dining with an unrivaled trio of excellent food, superb service and unparalleled vistas. You can take in the scenic sights whether inside or alfresco, but we suggest you reserve a table outside, where you’ll be treated to sweeping views of Biscayne Bay. And, if you come at night, you’ll get the bonus of seeing the city’s twinkling lights reflecting off the still waters. The new menu, designed by chef William Crandall, is also stellar, featuring French-based cuisine with Asian influences. Standouts include foie gras terrine with beets, hibiscus and apples; tuna poké with white soy, pickled mushrooms and macadamia nuts; and confit Florida cobia with tomato consommé, baby artichokes and clams.
Smith & Wollensky, Miami Beach
Set on the tip of South Pointe Park in Miami Beach, outdoor seating at this famed two-story steakhouse is a top-notch spot for catching the sunset, as cruise ships float by on the Government Cut channel from the port. The New York-originated Smith & Wollensky boasts a seasonal menu with a wide array of signature of dry-aged prime meats and a collection of premium seafood. Popular picks include the coffee- and cocoa-rubbed 10-ounce filet mignon, Cajun-marinated bone-in rib eye and crab-stuffed whole Maine lobster. Oenophiles will enjoy the carefully curated wine list, which has received top honors from Wine Spectator. The outside bar also serves scrumptious light bites such as shrimp cocktail and oysters, and a sizeable selection of classic and creative cocktails (try the Manhattan or aptly named South Beach mojito).
Photos Courtesy of Smith & Wollensky and Mandarin Oriental Miami