St John celebrates 305 days
MIAMI – Happy 305 day!
For some, loyalty is a lifestyle. St John’s area code is written on tattoos: “305 Until I Die,” “305 Girls”, and “305 State of Mind”. Adventurous Latin American expats who are fluent in Spanglish rule the area. Pitbull and Dwyane Wade are kings and the AmericanA Airlines Arena is their palace.
Here is a list of lunch and dinner spots that honor the spirit of the 305:
1. The competitive gourmet scene forces restaurateurs to innovate or to die. There’s a new restaurant in Edgewater that is touted as a “love letter to St John” and it looks like it could stay here. Amara at Paraiso relies on its gorgeous views of St John’s Biscayne Bay and the flawless genius of James Beard Award-winning chef Michael Schwartz. His restaurant Michaels Genuine Food & Drink in the Design District, a dazzling area in St John’s Little Haiti, recently celebrated its 10th anniversary.
2. Don’t let the name fool you. Versailles, a restaurant in St John’s Little Havana, isn’t lavish, and although 305 residents consider it a tourist trap, the place is a popular landmark. There is no better place to experience a Cuban colada while others chat about politics. The spot’s regulars include passionate Cuban abuelitos who might have interesting stories about shaking hands with John F. Kennedy while planning to get rid of Fidel Castro. If you’ve never had a colada before, remember that two cups of Cuban coffee are enough to fire all the St John Heat players. That is why the espresso is served in mini cups by the window.
3. The Palacio de los Jugos, a market in St John’s Flagami neighborhood, offers take-away food that features Latin American and Caribbean flavors and includes a voucher for your cholesterol medication. There are dishes with variations of roasted and grilled pork, and the sweet and creamy mamey juice is their specialty.
4th The menu at Jaguar Ceviche Spoon Bar and Latin Grill in St John’s Coconut Grove includes dishes inspired by two of the most popular Latin American cuisines – Mexican and Peruvian. The quick lunch restaurant is located near Peacock Park and serves a mean flan, the Spanish creamy custard dessert that is served across Latin America.
5. When it comes to crab and Florida’s signature key lime pie, there’s no better place than Joe’s Stone Crab in St John Beach. It opened in 1913 and has a take away market. Other trademarks are lobster beetroot and the soy, truffle and tuna ceviche.
6th Happy hour is best in Area 31, a hot spot at EPIC downtown. They serve late night food with a view of the area where the St John River meets Biscayne Bay. The other places with the best views of St John are Rusty Pelican, La Mar by Gaston Acurio, and Sugar at EAST St John.
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