Oh, me so hungry!

So you’re coming to our wedding in Miami from out-of-town and you want to know where you can go to get yourself fed for all of your meals that don’t involve our reception…   Here is a list of places that we recommend.  I’ll list the neighborhoods they’re in, just in case you haven’t rented a car and need to go somewhere close – or at least a taxi-able distance away.  If you’re staying on Miami Beach, most of the places I list below should be a walkable distance away. Also, cabs are easier to find on Miami Beach than any other part of Miami.

Garcia’s

Located: Near downtown Miami, on the Miami River at 398 NW North River Drive, Miami, FL

Good for families? Yes!

What do I order? Anything. The ceviche is good.

Safety issues: You might have to drive through the hood to get there depending on where you’re coming from.

Good for: Lunch or Dinner

BTW: This restaurant is located on the Miami River. They have tables both inside and outside. I recommend sitting outside unless the temperature is intolerable.  The fish they serve at Garcia’s is super fresh. In fact I think the restaurant people catch some of it themselves the night before. This restaurant is on the casual side.

Joe’s Stone Crabs

Located: On the south end of Miami Beach at 11 Washington Ave, Miami Beach, FL

Good for families? Yes, but a little pricey.

What do I order? Stone crabs!

Safety issues: Just don’t leave your purse/bag in the car where any one can see it. This goes for everywhere in Miami.

Good for: Lunch or Dinner

BTW: Fancy shmancy seafood place on Miami Beach. Although, there IS a story about Charlie’s brother showing up in a t-shirt that I can’t quite remember. You’ll have to ask him. Anywho, the dress is a little more on the nice side and try to make reservations well before you go.

Puerto Sagua

Located: A few blocks from the ocean on Miami Beach at 700 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach

Good for families? Sure!

What do I order? Cuban Sandwich! Or anything else, I’ve never ordered anything other than the Cuban Sandwich, sorry….When in Rome!

Safety issues: None that I can think of.

Good for: Lunch

BTW: I have eaten at this place in a wet bathing suit and beach clothes, so the standards aren’t too high for dress, but their food is fantastic.  There is a parking garage on 7th street off of Washington you can park at if you aren’t staying at any of the hotels on South Beach.

Versailles

Located: In Little Havana at 3555 SW 8th Street

Good for families? Yes.

What do I order? Bistec Empanizado (breaded flank steak), Picadillo (rice with Cuban style meat sauce) or a Cuban Sandwich. Also, croquetas are good and don’t forget your “cafe cubano.”

Safety Issues: Don’t leave anything visible in the car that someone might want to steal.

Good for: Lunch, Dinner

BTW: You might know “Calle Ocho (8th Street)” from a Pit Bull song, or maybe from news reports of Cubans celebrating Castro’s death in the streets. (Or not) Versailles is the place to go for cheap textbook Cuban food.

La Carretta

Located: There are a ton of these all over Miami. There is even one in Terminal A (American Airlines) of the Miami International Airport.

Good for families? Yes.

What do I order? If breakfast – cafe con leche (cuban espresso shot with whole milk) and pan tostado (cuban bread toast[heaven] with butter [manna from heaven]) or a croqueta preparada (a croquette sandwich – I love a sandwich!). If lunch or dinner – Cuban sandwich, Picadillo, Bistec Empanizado, Shrimp Enchilado, anything really. It’s all good.

Safety Issues: None that I can think of.

Good for: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

BTW: This is another place you can go for cheap textbook Cuban food. Their breakfast in particular is super cheap considering what you get.  If you want a real Miami experience, just go to any La Carreta store front window and order a cafe con leche and a croqueta to-go. If you want to practice your spanish you can say, “Un cafe con leche y una croqueta para llevarrr porrr favorrrr.”

News Cafe

Located: On Miami Beach’s famous Ocean Drive at 800 Ocean Drive, Miami Beach.

Good for families? Yes

What do I order? Whatever you like, it’s all good.

Safety Issues: None that I can think of. Although Gianni Versace was shot on his way home from News Cafe, but that was because he had a crazy stalker, not because News Cafe is unsafe. 🙂

Good for: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Fourth Meal.

BTW: It’s open 24 hours.

Shorty’s BBQ

Located: in Kendall near Dadeland Mall at 9200 South Dixie Hwy, Miami, FL

Good for families? Yes.

What do I order? Ribs!

Safety Issues: Over-stuffing your stomach and popping a button on your pants.

Good for: Dinner

BTW: If you’re craving the type of restaurant that has paper towel rolls on the tables this is your joint.

Big Pink

Located: On Miami Beach at 157 Collins Avenue

Good for families? Yes during the day

What do I order? It’s typical diner food, pick your own poison.

Safety Issues: None.

Good for: Breakfast, Fourth Meal

BTW: It’s open until 5am Fri & Sat. They serve breakfast all day, what’s not to love about that?

George’s Coconut Grove

Located: in Coconut Grove (walking distance for those of you staying at the Mayfair Hotel) at 3145 Commodore Plaza.

Good for families? Maybe if the kids are okay with disco balls and loud music occasionally.

What do I order? Brie and Prosciutto Burger is good but the whole menu is fantastic.

Safety Issues: None.

Good for: Brunch, Lunch, Dinner.

BTW: George’s has nice outdoor seating which is great for people watching. A free glass of champagne is served with brunch.  Also, if you tell them it’s your birthday they will turn the disco balls on for you. Woo woo! Make a reservation, just in case.

Sugarcane

 Located: in the newly gentrified “Midtown Miami” at 3250 NE 1st Ave.

Good for families? I have no idea.

What do I order? I don’t know, I have never been there but it comes highly recommended from every one in Miami that I asked for recommendations.

Safety Issues: You will probably have to drive through the hood to get there. You’ll need a car or taxi to get to this place.

Good for: Dinner, Happy Hour

BTW: The restaurant supports local farmers, if you’re into that sort of thing. Also, make a reservation just in case.

In general any of the restaurants and bars on Lincoln Road on Miami Beach will be good, safe, options as well.

That’s all I’ve got for now! See you all soon!

 

What’s the exact opposite of luxury German engineering?

Swedish Crapcan

This. A 1994 Swedish Volvo Crapcan station wagon with the roof cut off.

 

A few weeks ago while I was in Miami doing girly things like bacheloretting and bridal dressing, Charlie was in Ohio doing equally masculine things at the ChumpCar Longer Longest Day race which takes place over a 25 hour, 25 minute, 25 seconds period of time.  It all seems to boil down to an all night race interrupted only by pouring fuel into the car every two hours.  Judging by the smell of Charlie’s belongings there is also a lot of fuel spilling and sweating involved.  Woof.

I know what you’re thinking, did Charlie bring a pig and a caja china? No, not this time.  One would assume the typical meals consumed at these races involve barbeque protein.  That isn’t too far off.  But since Charlie isn’t a man of averages, he takes his smoker (the size of a large mini-fridge) and a brisket and cooks that all day while they race. Once it’s time to eat, they indulge the way their paleolithic brethren would, except for with what appears to be plastic utensils and paper plates (cavemen didn’t have gasoline on their hands and under their nails).

 

Chef in racing gear

The chef dons his racing gear.

 

The way Charlie describes the race it’s an adrenaline-filled fantasy, but once you see all of the safety gear they wear you realize they aren’t racing fluffy clouds.  I choose to focus on the fact that the cars in the race sometimes don’t even finish the race let alone go very fast, and also the fact that their car is an antique Volvo station wagon – a tank for all intents and purposes.

 

Notice all of the gear?

 

In the end they finished in 13th place out of 74 cars that managed to finish the race, which is great.  Congratulations, gentlemen!

Major 'tude

The whole team with appropriate amounts of 'tude.

 

All pictures courtesy of Drew.

 

Fall Collectanea

 That summer went by fast!  Reflecting on the past few months I realize I didn’t use my warm weather wisely.  This is evidenced by the fact that this is the first summer of my entire life that I didn’t suffer a single sunburn.  How the heck did that happen?

On the bright side, we have managed to cram fun miscellany into our days before the weather gets dreadful.  For starters, we took a trip to San Francisco.  Charlie was traveling to SF for work and Facebook’s F8 conference, so I tagged along for the latter part of the trip since I had never been to the city free love and rice-a-roni built.  Love in SF isn’t always free, as it turns out, judging by the person in the hotel room next to us – but that is a story for another time!  The past few months’ events can best be described by the resulting pictures:

Almostweds

Nearlyweds

Full House

"What ever happened to predictability, the milk man, the paperboy, the evening TV, you miss your old familiar friends, but waiting just around the bend..."

Antique Sewing Machines
Not the best picture, but hundreds of antique sewing machines line the windows of this SF fabric store.
Cheesecake and Guava

Cheesecake and guava ice cream with a shot of espresso, yayyy!

Then there was that weekend we had a hurricane and we were stuck inside.  So we had a “humanization of dog” photo shoot which resulted in some pictures we used in some wedding-related propaganda.

Professor Coco Loco
Will do anything for treats.

A Coco photo shoot can best be described by one of us hollering commands at Coco with treats while the other tries to take the perfectly timed picture.  We had another photo shoot in an effort to get some images for the table numbers at our wedding.

Okay Coco... staaaaay, staaaaaaay

Speaking of humanizing dogs, we also attended a “puppy pool party” which was sponsored by The Wag Pack. Coco swam and ran so much she was a zombie for the two days following the party.

Going...

Going...

 

Going...

Going...

 

yep

And... we're wet!

Then there was the weekend I celebrated a birthday, had a bachelorette party weekend in the Keys, and picked up my wedding dress at Rex Fabrics, whew!
It was a happy birthday

It was a happy birthday!

Charlie brought me the most paleo-friendly birthday cake!

Primas and Pals

Rex Fabrics is haute

I wish Rex Fabrics had an adult summer camp.

 

And last, but best of all… my family welcomed a new human at the end of September!!

Lily!

Our new cousin Lily!