Getting breakfast in Miami can mean anything from hitting up a fast-food drive-thru window, picking up a colada and tostada at your local Cuban cafeteria, or going for an epic 4-hour brunch with your BFFs. In short, we have plenty to offer, which can be daunting for anyone waking up famished. Luckily, you've got 10Best to help you figure out the right choice for a greasy hangover cure or an ultra-fresh gourmet first meal of the day.
When on the beach 10Best readers find much to enjoy at both Front Porch Cafe and Pelican Cafe for the beautiful ocean views and ultra-affordable breakfast options, at Eleventh Street Diner thanks to its well-rounded menu selection, and at Big Pink for its gargantuan meal sizes.
Foodies will absolutely go head over heels when they find themselves noshing on new French cuisine at the Biltmore Hotel's Fontana Restaurant. Dog-owners and the juice-and-yoga crowd will absolutely love the flavors and the ambiance at GreenStreet, one of Coconut Grove's hottest restaurants with outdoor seating and a pup-friendly staff. Those who enjoy less frills and more home-style sausage and eggs will definitely dig eating at the S&S Diner, with locations between Downtown and midtown and another right off Red Road.
Start a day of business meetings or sightseeing by fueling up at this popular, buzzing cafe located in the bustling neighborhood of Coconut Grove. Whether you're grabbing a bagel, pastry or croissant to go or you're settling in to while away the morning with a full meal and the daily news, this is the perfect choice for locals and tourists alike. GreenStreet offers indoor seating but it's the outdoor tables that are always busiest, often with patrons who bring their furry friends to this dog-friendly establishment. On the weekends, the dining room is especially crowded with couples and families enjoying fresh coffee and plates brimming with omelets, pancakes and fruit-topped waffles. (305-444-0244)
Headed by Chef Ed Malloy, Oliver's Bistro in Miami Beach offers a sizable breakfast menu, backed up by an equally impressive dinner menu revolving around American and Italian dishes. This venue spans the culinary field from Steak and Eggs and French Toast in the mornings, to Shrimp Scampi and Chipotle Beef Tacos at night, and just about anything else your taste buds desire in between. Flatbreads? Check. Cobb salad? Check. Kobe beef sliders? Triple check. They open at 9 a.m. daily, with breakfast running through 2:30 p.m., and on the weekends they stay open until midnight for those on the beach with a late night craving. ((305) 535-3050)
Town Kitchen and Bar
Housed in a picturesque shopping center just outside South Miami's ever-popular Shops at Sunset Place, this fun cocktail bar boasts contemporary decor and crowd-pleasing cuisine. Attractive 30-somethings mingle over tantalizing cocktails such as the pomegranate martini or French vanilla swirl and nibble on scrumptious eats from volcanic garlic bread to Barcelona-style mussels to hearth oven pizzas. A full menu of satisfying mains, like the Filet Mignon with Shrimp and Lobster Quesadilla, satiates the hungriest patrons, and comforting sides like Truffled Mac'N'Cheese and Panacetta or Black-eyed Pea Orzo are designed to share. This place is a hit with the brunch crowds as well, serving 2 for 1 Bloody Mary's, $25 unlimited mimosas, and the only Egg Arepa Omelet we've ever seen on a menu. (305-740-8118)
This cafe features a colorful, whimsical interior, but the outdoor tables are considered the place to be. A concrete canopy shields the sun, assisted by colorful umbrellas at each table, creating an appealing courtyard setting that is shady enough to temper the heat. The original Balans was located in London's Soho, and the hip, cosmopolitan vibe is evident at the Miami Beach outpost. Area executives and moguls often have lunch here, enjoying light favorites such as Thai Salad with an excellent homemade peanut dressing or Creamy Sweet Potato Soufflé with leeks and garlic. A light entree is a wise choice, as it leaves more room for dessert -- a primary attraction here. For dessert, try the White Chocolate Cheesecake or the Apple Tart with Sour Cream Ice Cream. (305-534-9191)
This restaurant is known for having the area's best breakfast (two kinds of bacon, endless frittata and omelet combinations, plentry of fresh fruit, straight from the oven pastries, Belgian waffles, and four different types of pancakes are just some of the selections), but its vast champagne brunch buffet on Sundays (10am-2pm) presents some tough decisions. Everything is presented so elegantly, you'll want a little bit of it all. How about an omelet made any way you like? Pastas? Sushi? Or even caviar? Afterwards, there's a chocolate fountain and no shortage of sinful dessert offerings. Indeed, no one walks away hungry! Live music complements the meal perfectly, and al fresco seating is available in the tropical courtyard. (305-445-8066)
Eleventh Street Diner
If you're in search of the best diner on the beach, your search is over. This SoBe fave is open 24 hours on Friday and Saturday, so you can get your motor running and stop and refill on burgers or breakfast all day long. The menu has enough variety to satisfy many tastes (Honey Grilled BBQ Wings, Monte Cristo Sandwiches, Argentinian Skirt Steak, Veggie Garden Burgers, and Greek Omelets all share a space in their kitchen). Eleventh Street is especially well-known for its award-winning fried chicken. The atmosphere is casual and friendly, and the staff will make sure you leave happy and content. (305-534-6373)
S & S Diner
Since 1938, locals have doted on this classic diner-style restaurant, where American favorites are served up in hearty portions. Area business people show up often at lunchtime, though it does brisk business at breakfast and dinner as well. This is old-fashioned comfort food that can satisfy any appetite. Try hearty stews, Creamed Chicken on Toast that will take you back to your childhood, and tasty Chipped Steak with a pile of homemade Mashed Potatoes. Nothing fancy; just great cooking that your mom might have made if she'd had the time. The diverse crowd and friendly atmosphere add to the experience. Be sure to check out both locations, at Omni and on Red Road. (305-373-4291)
Front Porch Cafe
This serene waterfront restaurant offers a magnificent view matched by a marvelously varied menu. The atmosphere is laid-back and casual, with selections of healthy, home-cooked food for breakfast, lunch and dinner. If you crave an omelet, they can whip up a masterpiece for you (from Ranchero to Reuben), and fresh juices are always available. The lunch menu features hearty salads, homemade soups and great sandwiches. Most menu items keep heart health in mind, but you can also throw coronary caution to the wind and sample decadent banana walnut French toast, granola pancakes with chocolate chips, or three scrambled eggs and cheese stuffed into a large, flaky biscuit. (305-531-8300)
If you're halfway through the day and still have a taste for breakfast, it's available at South Beach's Pelican Cafe until late afternoon. The extensive breakfast menu runs the gamut from toast and pastries to elaborate omelets (the Caprese Omelet is always a good choice) and fruit-topped waffles (go with the French Toast if you're more of a Nutella fan). The cafe is also a great place to kick back and do some serious people-watching -- especially at one of the outdoor tables -- with a Bloody Mary in hand. The funky industrial decor is reflected throughout the hotel, which is owned by the Diesel clothing company. Lunch and dinner menus feature tasty Italian-Mediterranean cuisine in ample portions. (305-673-1000)
This style-conscious American diner offers upscale interpretations of classic comfort foods, and breakfast is served all day long for those with less than traditional working hours. The dining room is all imagination and whimsy, with colorful diner decor, an open kitchen and communal tables. Try the hot malted waffles or the filling and tasty Big Pink breakfast burrito -- both are as popular in the evening as they are in the morning, or enjoy the Sweet Corn Tortilla Omelette for an extra special treat. Sit at a nostalgic booth in the industrial-style dining room or enjoy an outside table facing busy Collins Avenue. (305-532-4700, 305-531-0888)
About Priscilla Blossom
Pris Blossom is a freelance writer and feminist mama with a love for travel, writing, music, film, craft beer, yoga, museums, cultural anthropology, and her awesome kid.
She spent the bulk of the past decade taking trips on a whim, falling in love with and in such places as New York City, New Orleans, and a large portion of Nicaragua.
In 2011, she took off on her own and traveled around the U.S. via bus, bunking with strangers thanks to the power of CouchSurfing. She is currently writing a novel about this.
Read her words at PrisBlossom.com.
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