Upland’s menu is sure to please | Courtesy of Andrew Hektor
Nearly every restaurant in Miami serves everyone’s favorite morning meal. After all, with days spent soaking up the sun on the beach and dancing until the sun rises, you hardly need a reason to spend the next morning at brunch.
Hotel Restaurant, Japanese, Sushi, Asian, $$$
Zuma Miami specializes in Japanese cuisine | Courtesy of Zuma Miami
Brunch operates a little differently at Zuma, an izakaya boasting Downtown Miami riverfront views. Instead of traditional service, Zuma offers an extensive buffet, teeming with sushi, sashimi, soups, salads, tempura, noodles, raw oysters and a handful of hot and cold robata dishes. The best part? Unlimited mimosas.
Head to Blue Collar for American comfort food | Courtesy of Blue Collar
Housed in an unassuming motel on Biscayne Boulevard in MiMo, Blue Collar isn’t what passers-by might expect to find. The ’70s-style diner shuttles out American comfort food, scrawled on a blackboard in colorful chalk above the kitchen. Most seek out the duck confit muffin (sunny duck eggs, duck confit, smoked gouda and lemon aioli bookended by a portuguese muffin). Other perennial favorites include lemon buttermilk pancakes, a ragout sandwich (pork and veal shoulder and brisket swimming in hollowed-out seeded bread) and whatever’s listed on the veggie chalkboard: cheese grits, sweet potato plantain mash and caramelized brussels sprouts.
At the helm of Michael’s is the eponymous Michael Schwartz, a chef with serious cred: in 2010 he won a James Beard Award for Best Chef. At his namesake restaurant in Buena Vista, Schwartz crafts a space that highlights Miami’s local fare, trucked in from nearby farms. For brunch, slice into a kimchi benedict or a crispy rice cake, flush with chorizo, florida rock shrimp and a farm egg. There are warm, house-made sweets as well, such as cardamom-caramel cinnamon buns and plump mini-donuts bursting with guava curd. Wash everything down with one of the many cocktails: the Lady Marmalade is swirled with vodka, Caffo Solara, lemon juice and orange marmalade.
Brunch at The Biltmore is legendary for a reason: unlimited champagne, cheese boards and country pâtés, a carving station brimming with roasted pork and lamb, hot-off-the-griddle omelets and pancakes, and a seafood and caviar bar. What’s more, there’s an entire wall of desserts, overflowing with financiers, lemon meringue tarts, chocolate cream puffs, house-made marshmallows and a DIY ice-cream sundae station. The luxurious spread found in Coral Gables attracts a trove of people who quickly settle in the courtyard flanked by verdant fronds.
What began as a pop-up has since turned into an enduring South Miami destination for candied bacon (and other things, too!). The creative and cheeky brunch menu is a confluence of American and Cuban fare. You’ll find loaded tater tots showered with black truffle cream, applewood-smoked bacon and grana padano, and torrejas (similar to french toast). Expect a wait on weekends: everyone else is also trying to snag a stack of Cap’n Crunch pancakes.
One of Wynwood’s best cocktail bars happens to dish up a very good brunch. Diners delight in sourdough french toast, sprinkled with maple bacon, puffed rice and condensed milk. And the waffles – transformed into a panini – are pressed with pork rillette, gruyère and maple mustard. For bigger groups, there are a number of shared plates – think a Miami-style English breakfast and hanger steak. And, of course, the aforementioned cocktails, dubbed with cheeky names: Marvin the Martian is twirled with tequila, cucumber and coffee salt; and That’s All, Folks pairs gin with carrot, ginger and cilantro.
Mandolin Aegean Bistro is renowned for its Mediterranean dishes | Courtesy of Mandolin Aegean Bistro
Turkish and Greek food collide at this Mediterranean bistro in Buena Vista. A squat, one-story building painted blue and white with a hidden patio out back, the move here is to split an assortment of meze with the table. Baked feta is tinged with chili flakes, zucchini is stuffed with eggplant and almonds, and white bowls swiped with hummus and tzatziki are flanked by spears of bread springing out of paper bags. The lovely patio may be packed during brunch hours, but it serves more than one function: it’s home to a little garden whose bounty is plucked and deposited in many of the dishes.
Stationed in a renovated house with a wraparound porch in Wynwood, Morgan’s supports the Miami community by using local ingredients. Here, you’ll nosh on sticky buns and mascarpone-stuffed french toast, raspberry flat cakes and slabs of meatloaf crowned with a sunny egg. The rest of the menu is long and extensive, rife with a host of sandwiches, salads and shareable small plates. If you have even a drop of space left in your stomach for dessert, split an order of the daily changing bread pudding.
It’s all about the hot chicken at Richard Hales’s Nashville restaurant: bathed in cayenne and paprika, the crispy, golden thighs and wings emerge out of the fryer glistening. The rest of the menu at this Miami Beach hotspot continues with the Southern theme, offering cheddar biscuits and gravy, fried chicken and cornbread waffles, and steak and eggs. Between 11am and 3pm, a handful of drinks, including mimosas, apple cider sangria and bloody marys, are bottomless.
Stephen Starr brings his beloved Philadelphia restaurant to Miami Beach. Brunch is rooted in California and Italian cuisine, blending house-made pizza and pasta with verdant salads and vegetable-infused eggs. You’ll want to share the sausage and kale pizza (crisped-up dough painted with pistachio pesto and stracciatella), then save the chilaquiles, rolled with skirt steak, eggs and cotija, all for yourself. As you wait for the food to be shepherded out of the kitchen, nurse a tall glass of watermelon limonata juice, squeezed with florida citrus.
One of the best things to do in South Miami is stop in for brunch at TacoCraft. Here, it’s unsurprisingly all about the tacos. Each taco comes on a masa tortilla shaped by the hands of Mexican señoritas. Breakfast tacos seem to land on every table here; some overflow with chorizo, cheese, potato hash and a fried egg, others with kale and sweet potato hash, avocado and beans. For the less taco-oriented, feast on oxtail empanadas, giant burritos stuffed with refried beans and steak, and bright green guacamole, strewn with onions and tomatoes. Plus, with any purchase of an entree, bottomless mimosas or sangria are $15.