Best Value

Trying to pin down words like frugal, value, and deal can be exasperating because different people have different ideas of cost savings. For 10Best, the range is broad - we include impossibly cheap eateries with amazing menus, and we share really nice restaurants that have perks like an impressive wine list with no corkage fee or a terrifically affordable prix fixe menu. If you're looking for Best Value restaurants in Miami, let us introduce you to a few of our favorites, starting with Pilar Restaurant and La Sandwicherie. They're low in expenditures and high in appeal.

10 OTC Restaurant Brickell
An acronym for over-the-counter, OTC is a local favorite for small plates of imaginative American cuisine and a great selection of craft beer. The deceptively casual restaurant caters to laid-back clientele who also happen to enjoy excellent food and drink. Executive chef Jacob Anaya, late of Azul, draws on his Native American and Mexican heritage, his international travels, and his significant work experience in California and Hawaii to create high-quality fare that's enjoyed by patrons in a social, sharing environment. Dishes include Thai Style Wings (braised chicken wings tossed in a Thai-chili sauce served with papa ray-cabbage slaw); Craft Beer Fish 'n Chips (beer-battered cod, hand cut fries, curry tartar sauce); and Hong Kong Duck 'n Waffles during brunch. ((305) 374-4612)

9 Bayside Seafood Hut
Come hungry because this seafood stop is sure to fill you up. Large portions and a casual atmosphere make you feel right at home, and menu prices go easy on the pocketbook, too! Order seafood cooked in a variety of ways — broiled, blackened, or fried, it's all fresh and succulent. Occasionally on weekends, guests are treated to live music; the location also offers a waterside view. Casual dress. (305-361-0177)

8 Daily Bread Marketplace
Middle Eastern restaurants are few and far between in Miami, but Daily Bread offers a delectable array of tabouli, baba ghanoush and lamb or beef kebabs, all served with generous portions of fresh pita bread. Daily specials may include lamb and cauliflower with preserved lemon, and gourmet sandwiches and salads satisfy on-the-go patrons. Quick service and wallet-friendly prices also please, and the baklava is widely regarded as some of the best in town. (305-856-5893)

7 Siam Palace
Accomplished Thai cookery and authentic decor reel in diners at this neighborhood favorite. Many dishes, particularly curries, pack a potent kick, but less adventurous diners are pleased to find more subtle flavors as well. Popular choices include seafood, vegetable spring rolls, basil chicken and a classic pad Thai. Coconut ice cream caps it all on a delicately sweet note, and prices are decidedly un-Miami. (305-279-6906)

6 Puerto Sagua
No-frills Puerto Sagua is a long-standing institution in South Beach, where restaurants come and go with frequency. This one has continued to please the fickle masses with traditional Cuban comfort food and unfussy decor. Native Cubans savor authentic shrimp in garlic sauce, fried plantains and grilled Cuban sandwiches stuffed with ham, pork and cheese. Late hours also make Puerto Sagua a perfect stop-off after a show or a night of club-hopping. (305-673-1115)

5 Shorty's Bar-B-Q
Beloved Shorty's has been filling Miami's rumbling stomachs since 1951. Down-home, Southern-style barbecued ribs, along with pulled pork and beef brisket, are the draw. Everything comes with Shorty's original sauce and your choice of sides: fries, slaw, corn on the cob, baked sweet potato or garlic bread. Don't bother trying to keep your hands clean — it simply isn't possible. And since nothing goes better with barbecue than cold beer, order a pitcher to share while you dig in. You won't leave hungry, but you may make a few new friends — communal tables are the shoulder-rubbing norm. (305-670-7732)

4 Garcia's Seafood Grille & Fish
Offering simple Florida cooking at its best, Garcia's serves the area's freshest seafood at incredible prices. A location on the Miami River grants picturesque dining, complete with picnic tables and umbrellas, and the super-casual ambience is much prized by regulars. They also swear by the dolphin sandwich, hushpuppies and crab cakes. Some items sell out quickly, but the staff can steer you to other satisfying options, and daily specials are always reliable. And don't forget to sample the seafood dip! (305-375-0765)

3 Pilar Restaurant
Local chef Scott Fredel has opted for a relaxed atmosphere at stylish, upscale Pilar. Hardwood floors, comfortable seating and original art give the restaurant a modern bistro feel that completely belies its strip-mall location. Floribbean seafood is the specialty, prepared with a deft hand and perky island flavors. Try seared mahi mahi, sautéed yellowtail snapper or fried conch with hearts of palm slaw, and wrap things up with moist chocolate chip banana cake. Affordable wines are a great boon, as is early-bird dining from 5pm to 6pm. (305-937-2777)

2 La Sandwicherie
After a hard night of clubbing or bar-hopping, nothing's better than a hefty sandwich from this walk-up counter right off Collins Avenue. Crusty French bread is piled high with your choice of meats (from turkey and prosciutto to pâté and smoked salmon), cheeses and condiments. If you need a veggie fix, opt for a salad — all are generous, fresh and tasty. Smoothies and frozen yogurt satisfy sweet-tooth urgings, and prices are more than affordable. Expect a line, though, because the place attracts a crowd all day long. (305-532-8934)

1 Mrs. Mendoza's
When you're craving a quick burrito, bypass that fast food chain and head straight for Mrs. M's! It's just as quick and economical, but there's no comparison in taste. Everything on the brief menu is good, from burritos to tacos to fajitas, and it all comes with a side of tortilla chips. You can even score a combination plate or a salad. Don't forget to stop by the salsa bar — each of the several varieties is made fresh daily. Nothing pre-packaged could even come close! (305-477-5119)


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1
OTC Restaurant Brickell 10Best List Arrow
Dining Options: Family Friendly, Take Out
COST: $$
2
Bayside Seafood Hut 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American, Seafood
Dining Options: Disabled Accessible, Family Friendly, Non-Smoking
Neighborhood: Fisher Island
COST: $
3
Daily Bread Marketplace 10Best List Arrow
Dining Options: Catering, Family Friendly, Non-Smoking, Take Out
Cuisine: European, Greek, Middle Eastern
Neighborhood: Coconut Grove
COST: $
4
Siam Palace 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: Asian, Thai
Dining Options: Family Friendly, Non-Smoking
Neighborhood: Sunset
COST: $
5
Puerto Sagua 10Best List Arrow
Dining Options: Counter Seating, Family Friendly, Non-Smoking, Take Out
Cuisine: Cuban, Latin
Neighborhood: South Beach
COST: $
6
Shorty's Bar-B-Q 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American, Barbecue
Dining Options: Family Friendly, Non-Smoking
COST: $
7
Garcia's Seafood Grille & Fish 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American, Local Specialty, Seafood
Dining Options: Family Friendly, Non-Smoking, Take Out
COST: $$
8
Pilar Restaurant 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American, Caribbean, Local Specialty, Seafood
Dining Options: Bar / Lounge, Non-Smoking, Take Out
COST: $$
9
La Sandwicherie 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American, Deli
Dining Options: Catering, Counter Seating, Delivery, Take Out
COST: $
10
Mrs. Mendoza's 10Best List Arrow
Dining Options: Delivery, Family Friendly, Non-Smoking, Take Out
Cuisine: Latin, Mexican
Neighborhood: DORAL
COST: $
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