There are plenty of gorgeous restaurants in Miami that are just fine with serving bad-to-mediocre food because they know their view is that good. It’s kind of like how an arena can charge you $1,000 for a beer and a bad hotdog. You came to watch the game, and it just happens to be going on during lunch.
We would probably still come to Amara if it was one of those places because its uninterrupted front-row view of Biscayne Bay is just that pretty. On a sunny day, it might just be the nicest place to eat in the whole city. Even the indoor seating, which you might have to settle for if it’s very crowded, has a decent view of the water. And while that’s no doubt the main attraction here, the food at Amara is very good - the grouper ceviche, smoked wahoo dip, and banana leaf-wrapped cobia are all things we would happily eat in a windowless room.
There are still things we don’t exactly love about Amara - like the pounding pop-house music that rains down on the outdoor tables, or the way this place can start to feel a bit like a day club outside when the rosé is flowing on the weekend. But dwelling on these flaws feels like complaining about a $12 beer when you have front row seats to see LeBron James do his thing.
Most of the work here has already been done for you. All you have to do is pluck the cold lobster meat from its shell, apply lemon, and enjoy one of the best things to emerge from the sea since shirtless Jason Momoa.
The grouper is sitting in a coconut milk broth, which adds a nice sweetness to the fish. Cilantro, avocado, and toasted pistachio help out too, but the thing that shines most in this dish are the tender chunks of grouper, just as it should be.
If you venture to any of the seafood options outside the raw bar or the ceviche, please make it this. Unwrapping the fish feels like Christmas morning, but tasting the juicy cobia is the real gift.