Week in South Florida--1

2008/10/15 21:06:00
I recently spent a week on business traveling to Miami, Boca Raton and Fort Lauderdale. Full intent was to explore some new spots to eat at and see if i could report my trip on Roadfood.

Started off on a Sunday night, arrivng in Miami around 8 PM and having to wait 50 minutes for the luggage to show up. Checked into the hotel around 9 PM, so spoiled my original idea to hit las Culbrinas in Coconut Grove. So I wandered over to Mojitos in the Dolphin Mall next to my hotel. They were starting to pack in in for the night. No music. Poor beer selection for a bar, I settled for a Presidente, a Dominican knock off of Cororna. Had been hoping for at least a Red Stripe. Being late, I ordered the tostones rellenos, filled fried plantains; shrimp and piccadillo. Outside the plantains, there wasn't much flavor. Piccadillo tasted like sloppy joe mix out of the generic brand can. Needed Singleton's Seafood Shack's Colon Cleaner hot sauce for sure.

On Monday, I picked a Spanish (but really more Peruvian) restaurant called Casa Paco. Extensive menu, Good bottles of Roja inviting you to the table. Crisp plantain chips (no chimichurri sauce). Most of the menu and daily specials were geared toward parties of 2 or more. I went for a Basque style seafood dish, Corvina dela Vasca, that sounded excellent on the menu. Snapper, shrimp, clams, hard boiled eggs, asparagus. But the presentation looked like the type of meal the Campbell's soup commercial people usually ate before the Campbell's soup chef shows up.

Tasted just as bland. Where's that Colon Cleaner?

The snapper and the shrimp tasted fresh. So that was a good sign.
Again, poor beer selection, went with a Guiness which wasn't meant for fish but didn't want to drink a full bottle of wine.

Casa Paco is certainly a place to try with a larger group and get the paella or pork dishes. but for someone dining alone, the latin American Cafeteria #1 or #2 would have been a better selection. Then again, I'm trying new places.

2 disappointments. 4 days to go. Tuesday is breakfast at Moe's in Adventura.
RE: Week in South Florida--1 2008/10/15 22:35:11
On Tuesday, I got up early and drove from West Miami to North Miami and Biscayne Bay with a slight detour north to Adventura, home of Moe's Bagels and Deli, for a hearty breakfast.

Can't beat the corned beef hash here. And a bialy!! Haven't had a bialy since I was in NYC a couple of years ago. Home fries were very good.

Later that afternoon, I drove up to Fort Lauderdale, my base for the next 3 days. Dinner on Tuesday was at the Calypso, in Pompano Beach.

A great menu on the specials board.

I started with some conch fritters and a Sam Adams.

No need to wish for the Colon Cleaner here as they offer an array of pepper sauces.

I love good mussels so that was dinner. With plantains, pigeon peas and rice.

Fresh baked key lime pie was dessert. But I was so full, I got it to go. Later at the hotel, when i opened it up, I had flipped it upside down. Not a good picture but a darn good piece of pie!

Filet Mignon
RE: Week in South Florida--1 2008/10/16 09:07:05
Lovely pictures, crew! I'm glad you clarified the asparagus in the first dish you mentioned--I was trying to figure out whether they'd slipped you a whole squid body or what exactly. And what is up with the hard boiled eggs?
RE: Week in South Florida--1 2008/10/16 09:23:59
Those conch fritters look very appetizing especially with a nice cold beer!
Thanks for sharing!
RE: Week in South Florida--1 2008/10/16 09:27:05
That looks like the kind of breakfast I like!

How were the conch fritters?
Junior Burger
RE: Week in South Florida--1 2008/10/16 09:29:18
Needed Singleton's Seafood Shack's Colon Cleaner hot sauce for sure.

Are you from Jacksonville???

I ate at Singleton's twice last week.
RE: Week in South Florida--1 2008/10/16 09:38:14
Haven't had conch since a trip to Marathon years ago...those fritters and beer looked great...thanks!
Filet Mignon
RE: Week in South Florida--1 2008/10/16 09:46:05
Those conch fritters at the[url='http://www.calypsorestaurant.com/']Calypso Restaurant and Raw Bar [/url]look like the kind I like!

If every meal at Las Culebrinas is like the one I had the other year, then you did not miss much. I remember finding a flaw in everthing I was served. Not awful, just nothing to recommend.

Yours is the latest of several recommendations of Moe's in Aventura. I really have to get there, although it is a long haul (90 minutes) for breakfast.

About your dishes at [url='http://www.mojitos.com/']Mojitos[/url] - in general, Cuban food is not picante. Did your picadillo have olives and raisins in it?
RE: Week in South Florida--1 2008/10/16 09:58:27
ivyhouse: The fritters were excellent. Even had a lot of conch in them. Not just filler.

justbeachy: We live a bit west of JAX, as in Tallahassee. Got some pics of Singleton's before the batteries died, but BB's thread captured the place better, except for the wooden boats. I'll post a pic of me eating at Singletons when I get home tonight.

Miami Don: If there were raisins in the piccadillo, they left before the plate was delivered. Olives? The bar didn't even have them out for drink garnish. You expect the cooks to have them?
Like I said, it tasted like sloppy joe mix straight out of the can.

The drive to Moe's took me about 45 minutes at 6:30 AM. I wouldn't have ventured up that way except that I was over at the FIU North Campus that day.

Next leg of trip coming up later.
Baah Ben
Filet Mignon
RE: Week in South Florida--1 2008/10/16 10:28:23
Olives and raisins...Standard ingredients in any legitimate piccadillo....

Don't recall Moe's when I lived in Aventura..Looks pretty good. Hey, thanks for the pictures.
Filet Mignon
RE: Week in South Florida--1 2010/10/29 17:01:24
Calypso sounds great, crew! Do you think it's close enough to the airport for a reasonable taxi ride? I am salivating at your pics of the conch fritters......
sk bob
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: Week in South Florida--1 2010/10/30 22:07:08
that breakfast at Adventura looks great
whatever is in that first picture does not look edible
Calypso looks way to pricey for what it is, where it is, but those conch fritters look good.
good report, crew84row.
RE: Week in South Florida--1 2010/10/31 08:59:43
My favorite Italian restaurant in South Florida, Casa DeLuca.  Real old school Pompano Beach Italian.  I was there about five years ago and the waiters were still wearing leisure suits.
About a 10 minute ride up US-1, right next to The Church of the Seven Bells.
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: Week in South Florida--1 2010/10/31 10:38:02
Great report!  I love conch - fritters- salad- cracked conch you name it.  Hard to get around here.  Did any of those places have Kalik beer?