Brickell is like a Rorschach test. Some people see Miami’s booming future in its tall and shiny new buildings. Others look at it and have flashbacks to that one time it took them four hours to drive three blocks. But Brickell has some restaurants that are good enough to justify even the sh*ttiest of commutes it takes to get here. Our list of the 18 best restaurants in the neighborhood aren’t just astronomically expensive places reserved for people with more bank accounts than teeth. You’ll find a few fancy spots on this guide, but there’s also great pizza, oysters, and shawarma that are all worth a trip. Just maybe not during rush hour.
The River Oyster Bar
Sitting at the bar here with a dozen oysters in front of you is a good call, regardless if you’re looking for a seafood-heavy dinner or just trying to hide from the truly hideous rush-hour traffic that circles this place like a shark without car insurance. But whether or not you’re here for cheap Happy Hour oysters or the outstanding scallop crudo - it’s one of the best (and least pretentious) restaurants in the Brickell. They have a pretty big menu, but anything that used to live in the ocean is going to be good here.
Technically, Oriental Bakery falls outside Brickell’s official border - but only by, like, 200 yards. Plus, this market/restaurant (which specializes in Syrian, Greek, and Armenian foods) is casual, affordable, and very tasty. All of those things are quite rare in Brickell, so it’s a good place to have in your rotation. Like the name implies, it’s a bakery and grocery store selling lots of tasty food and pantry items. You can come grab a bag of meat pies, a great za’atar flatbread, or what’s quite possibly Miami’s best baklava to-go. But they also have a few tables where you can sit down and enjoy a solid falafel sandwich, shawarma platter, hummus, kibbeh, and more - all for under $10.
When it comes to pizza, there’s the quick, cheap slice you can eat while sprinting down the street, and then there’s the incredibly delicious pizza that’s worthy of a sit-down meal and a good bottle of wine. Stanzione serves the second kind. Come to this bright blue building for one of the best Neapolitan pies in the city and a small list of natural wines. Everything here is good - from the recognizable margherita down to the more elaborate lemon and burrata white pizza. They also have some excellent Italian subs on the menu too, which make for a great weekend takeout lunch.
Even though it’s right in the heart of one of Brickell’s busiest strips, Kaori is a good place to hide from the chaos of the neighborhood. The upscale restaurant occupies a dim, narrow, two-story space that feels pleasantly secluded. Menu items include Mediterranean, Chinese, and Japanese dishes that aren’t cheap, but are very tasty. They have a great garlic butter branzino served butterflied and perfectly tender. The crudos are very good, and the smoked ginger prawn and octopus karaage should be on the table too. Their cocktails are also excellent, and they have a cozy lounge downstairs that’s a fine spot to have a drink or two at the bar.
BBQ & Craft Company is a casual spot serving the best barbecue in Brickell, and some of the best in Miami, too. It’s a simple set up inside. The dining room is bright with high ceilings, and a few TVs playing sports. But you’re not coming here for the ambiance - you’re coming to eat lots of very good meat. Their baby back ribs and dry-rubbed wings are really great. They offer a few sandwich options too, and some classic barbecue sides like collard greens, mac and cheese, and sweet cornbread cupcakes served with maple butter. It’s a good place to come in forgiving pants, and eat enough meat to make stray cats follow you on the walk back to your car.
photo credit: Cleveland Jennings
Mister 01’s Brickell location is bigger than the original in South Beach, with more room and some nice outdoor seating. But here you can find the same strangely delicious pizzas like the white truffle oil-doused Claudio or the Coffee Paolo with honey, coffee grounds, and spicy salami. There are also more typical, thin-crust pies like margherita and pepperoni, and this place is packed almost every day of the week with people who have been successfully converted to accepting coffee grounds as a pizza topping.
The elevator ride to this upscale Uruguayan restaurant is very fun (they’ve got one of those infinity mirror set-ups that makes it look like you’re in outer space), but dinner here is also good. This place is massive, with multiple rooms that can accommodate huge groups, outdoor tables, and countertop seating that borders their big wood-fired grill, which is our favorite place to sit. The menu is also quite large - although you should really prioritize steak here. That’s what they’re best at - although the cheesy pasta al forno with chunks of braised short rib is also pretty tasty. It’s not a cheap meal, but if you want a sort of fancy dinner in Brickell, this is one of the better places to do it.
Edge, Steak & Bar
Edge Steak & Bar is an upscale spot inside Brickell’s Four Seasons, and this place really has two purposes. You could use it for any sort of fancy, formal meal - like wooing clients or a dinner with your partner’s hard-to-please parents. Or, you can just come here any time you want some excellent steak and are okay dropping a decent amount of money in the process. Start with the really good charcuterie plate full of house sausage, various hams, and pickled things. Then, you can’t really go wrong with any of the steaks, especially the wagyu churrasco. It’s perfectly cooked to your liking and is super flavorful despite being such a lean cut. The Aussie lamb chops deserve an honorable mention, too.
Just about every big neighborhood in Miami has its own Coyo Taco, and Brickell is part of that club. This casual shop generally isn’t as crowded as the one in Wynwood. But they still serve the same very good tacos that have us willing to stand in line for 20 minutes - the al pastor, duck carnitas, and fried grouper tacos are all solid picks. There are also burritos in case a few tacos just won’t cut it. Oh, and margaritas too.
Naoe is one of the most expensive dinners in Miami, but it's also one of the most unforgettable. Dinner for two at the Brickell Key omakase will cost you $725.76. But in exchange, you'll get over three hours of unique, phenomenal dishes. Most folks in Miami hear the word “omakase” and assume sushi. And while there is a nigiri section of Naoe’s menu (which might make you cry a happy tear) Naoe is so much more than sushi. Dishes are constantly rotating based on seasonality, but you’re bound to encounter a mix of local vegetables alongside rare (for Miami) seafood like braised sazae, milt, and chunks of cured mullet roe that have the funk of an aged cheese. The leisurely meal ends with matcha, honey cake, and ice cream made with a house ingredient they like to make their guests guess. We won’t spoil the surprise.
Tobacco Road By Kush
Kush has teamed up with the owners of Tobacco Road (which was, at one point, the oldest bar in Miami) to bring the classic Brickell spot back - sort of. It’s not in the same location, but it does feature a lot of the bar’s old decor and a food and drink menu inspired by the original Tobacco Road. But the best part about this place is that it’s one of the only spots in Brickell for a laid-back cocktail and good bar food. And, like all Kush establishments, the food (burgers, wings, sandwiches, and various bar snacks) tastes great and pairs beautifully with a cold beer.
If you’re at LPM, there’s a good chance you are celebrating something. Or, you found $300 dollars on the ground and suddenly got a craving for upscale French food. Either way, this place is a good special occasion spot if you’re in the mood for white tablecloths and escargot. Don’t expect a DJ booth or an upbeat atmosphere. LPM is more old school fine dining. The servers wear suits and the dining room feels palatial. But the food is still the main event here. The escargot, fried zucchini flowers (beignets de fleurs de courgette), and risotto are all very good, and LPM is definitely one of the better French restaurants in town.
There are certain things Miami needs less of - like tow trucks, flooding, and boaters who don’t respect no-wake manatee zones. And then there are things we are happy to see throughout the city, like La Sandwicherie. Our favorite South Beach sandwich shop thankfully has multiple locations, including one in Brickell. This one not only has AC, but is also open till 5am. Still, we’ll happily eat these huge sandwiches any time of day, whether or not we’ve already had seven beers.
La Mar by Gaston Acurio
La Mar is a popular restaurant on the mysterious millionaire island known as Brickell Key. They serve some of the best Peruvian food in town, and their waterfront view is also pretty stellar—so good that it's almost not even worth coming here unless you can sit outside. In terms of food, you can't go wrong starting with the very good traditional Peruvian ceviche. They also make a great lomo saltado and have rotating anticucho options, including an excellent version with veal heart. This is a hotel restaurant, so expect a slightly touristy crowd. Luckily the food is good enough to distract you from the vacationing businessmen punching away on his laptop at the bar.
DC Pie Co.
DC Pie is a pizza place from the team behind Lucali, which is usually a very tough restaurant to get a table at because every bite of their pizza makes you see god. DC Pie is much bigger and more accessible, but - while these pies certainly look and even taste like Lucali pizza - it’s not quite Lucali. It’s more like a pretty good cover band, but even a lesser Lucali pizza is still better than most pizza. They also have a little cocktail bar in the back of the restaurant too.