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Ooh La La! These 10 Local French Restaurants Are 'Tres Magnifique'



For many, French dining is considered to be "haute cuisine". Many master chefs were either trained in France or are highly knowledgeable about French cuisine and it's true that much of Western gastronomy has been profoundly influenced by it.

Miami, being the cultural hub of chefs and foodies in the southeast, holds its own by being the home of numerous French and French-inspired eateries and their purveyors.

While some may believe that French dining is reserved for those with deep pockets, that's not necessarily true. In the Grove, you can easily step into Le Bouchon du Grove and spend a mere $20 for a filling and flavorful meal.

Popular spots like La Sandwicherie also offer casual French cuisine for just a few dollars.

That being said, some of Miami's greatest French restaurants do come with a higher price tag--though totally worth it, in our opinion.

The Setai Grill, while not exclusively French, doles out some of the most delectable dishes this side of Paris, and Le Provencal will set you back a few depending on what you order. But again, completely worth every penny.

And then of course there's Palme d'Or, whose reputation as the place for French gourmet cuisine precedes it. Read on to find out who our latest picks for best French cuisine are.


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One of the city's most talked about places to dine these days is none other than Le Zoo. This French brasserie by Philadephia restaurateur Stephen Starr has a menu boasting the classic Parisian favorites that the local, well-to-do clientele love. Start a meal with freshly baked bread and an onion soup, green salad, or mushroom tart--all flavorful yet small enough to leave room for what you really came for. Bouillabaisse, steak au poivre, quiche lorraine, croque madame, and trout almondine are among the favorites here, and pair excellently with a nice glass of bubbly from their impressive selection. Of course, if champagne isn't your poison, you can always opt for a glass of red or white, or a handcrafted cocktail from their top-shelf bar. The ambiance leaves nothing to be desired, the service is prompt and professional, and overall, Le Zoo impresses even the harshest of critics.

Recommended for French because: Miami is lacking in brasseries, but this one proves that you only need one if you do it right.

Priscilla's expert tip: Unless it's raining cats and dogs and mosquitos or feeling like 1,000 degrees out, we suggest enjoying your dinner on the outside patio.

Read more about Le Zoo →




The Petit Rouge Bistro is the sort of place you find out about from a trusted friend rather than from exploring the usual restaurant-heavy neighborhoods. Located in North Miami and tucked away in a shopping plaza, driving by you'd never expect to find some of the very best French cuisine in all of the Magic City. Among the delicacies you'll find at this hidden gem are moules marniere (mussels in white wine), rillettes de canard (potted duck confit), and filet mignon au poivre vert (pan seared beef tenderloin covered in a green peppercorn sauce). Don't forget to round out your evening at this dinner-only bistro with a taste or two of their profiteroles.

Recommended for French because: This intimate French bistro frequently gets rave reviews for their service, setting, and saveurs (flavors). A local's favorite as well as a fave of 10Best.

Priscilla's expert tip: Make reservations to this cozy restaurant as there are only 8 tables available.

Read more about Petit Rouge →


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La Sandwicherie
Photo courtesy of used in book.


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 pate and smoked salmon), cheeses (fresh mozzarella, swiss, brie) and condiments (never skip the cornichons). If you need a veggie fix, opt for a salad, like the French Riviera (lettuce, tomatos, green and hot peppers, black olives, onions, cucumbers, cornichons, carrots, and egg); 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.

Recommended for French because: For some frugal French fare, you can't do better than La Sandwicherie.

Priscilla's expert tip: Delivery is available in the SoBe and Brickell areas which is great when you need a quick and healthy lunch at your desk.

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Le Bouchon Du Grove


Restaurant critics, Grove-dwellers, and first time visitors always agree about Le Bouchon Du Grove, the cozy bistro in the heart of Coconut Grove. the atmosphere is great, the food is superb,and the service is outstanding. The restaurant offers a casual atmosphere that is perfect for dining with friends, co-workers, or family members. The creative menu features a wide array of great selections, always made from the highest quality ingredients. Be sure to ask your server about daily specials and other notable menu selections. The staff at Le Bouchon Du Grove are friendly and professional and will ensure that your dining experience is a pleasant one.

Recommended for French because: Le Bouchon offers an affordable menu that doesn't sacrifice on flavor, plus a fun, kitschy ambiance that's sure to win you over.

Priscilla's expert tip: Don't forget to order some chocolate croissants to go at the end of your meal.

Read more about Le Bouchon Du Grove →


Pascal's on Ponce


Nouvelle French cuisine served in a cozy, unpretentious setting â€" this is the forte of chef-owner Pascal Oudin's friendly little eatery, where Coral Gables sophisticates scramble to secure one of the handful of tables or, if nothing else, a stool at the small bar area. While decor may not dazzle, the menu sure will, especially when one factors in such delightful dishes as lobster bisque, crispy sea bass in a red wine reduction, veal rib-eye with endive, and steamed salmon with shrimp and scallops. Of course, desserts at such a place are always in order, and Pascal's clafoutis with fresh, dark cherries is nothing short of divine. Reservations are suggested, especially on the weekends.

Recommended for French because: Everyone raves about their soufflees, and combined with the service and ambiance, Pascal's offers one of the best French cuisine experiences in Miami.

Priscilla's expert tip: Bring your credit card, or you can always wait for Miami Spice when they're almost sure to have a great deal on a three-course meal.

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Le Provencal


For a pleasing midday meal with all-out French flair, this pleasant bistro in Coral Gables fits the bill. Le Provencal has brought delicious southern French cuisine to diners since 1988, but moved to its current location in 2009. Meet friends or business associates for the fixed price lunch, which offers three fabulous courses for one reasonable price. The authentic French soups are a specialty, and fresh seafood is frequently featured as a special. Look for the fresh catch prepared with leeks, tomato, and garlic-infused olive oil. Exceptional wines and a romantic dining room sweep you away to the Champs-Elysees. Business casual attire.

Recommended for French because: With amazing weekly lunch specials, an array of meat and seafood dishes, and custom-prepared vegetarian dishes, Le Provencal leaves nothing to be desired.

Priscilla's expert tip: Check their website to find out the lunch specials for the week.

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Palme d'Or


Surround yourself in luxury at this upscale French restaurant, housed inside the even more luxurious Biltmore Hotel. First, soak up the glittering ambiance, full of polished crystal, crisp linens and gilt-lined mirrors. Then dive into the rich cuisine, which may include dishes such as lobster fricassee over linguine or chicken stuffed with foie gras. Michelin starred and James Beard "Rising Star" nominee Chef Gregory Pugin prepares his French fare with a modern twist, always using fresh, sustainable, and local ingredients to ensure his dishes go beyond expectations. Wonderful wines and impeccable desserts complete this sophisticated yet unpretentious dining experience. Reservations required.

Recommended for French because: This award-winning restaurant with its Chef's tasting menu and extensive wine list will ensure you feel as close to France as possible in Miami.

Priscilla's expert tip: This isn't the local McDonalds. Leave the flip-flops and short behind and dress appropriately.

Read more about Palme d'Or →


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Meet 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.

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