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Ghee Design District Closes: The Weekly Miami Restaurant Update

PHOTO: Tasty Planet
Updated August 3rd, 2020

If you want to stay on top of what’s happening with Miami restaurants and bars right now, you’ve come to the right place. Every week, we’ll be keeping track of the latest openings, reopenings, specials, or any other mildly interesting thing we think you might want to know.

Week Of July 27

  • Farewell, Ghee Design District: We’ve confirmed some very sad news: Ghee Design District is closing its doors for good. This Saturday was its last night of service. This isn’t the end of Ghee completely, though. The original Dadeland location is still open. Also, the Ghee team is opening a new restaurant called Mamey in Coral Gables’ Thesis Hotel on August 11 with another new restaurant, Orno, slated to open in the same hotel at the end of this year. Mamey will serve a combination of Asian, Polynesian, and Caribbean food. See see a list of more Miami restaurant closings here.

  • A New Vietnamese Pop-Up: Another day, another pop-up. This exciting new addition is a place called Tâm Tâm. It will be operating out of 1-800-Lucky throughout August and is serving a very tasty menu with things like banh mi, chicken curry, and a very impressive looking fried chicken sandwich.

  • Sweet Melody Gets A New Shop: Sweet Melody makes our favorite ice cream in Miami right now, and they’ll be opening a brand new shop at the end of August. The second location will be located in Palmetto Bay and will have an expanded menu, with baked goods, sundaes, ice cream cakes, and pies. Stay tuned to their Instagram for more announcements.

  • Chug’s Is Here A Little Longer: Last week we told you that Chug’s would be closing for renovations on August 2. Well, they’ve slightly altered those plans. The Coconut Grove Cuban cafe will stay open for an additional four weeks. So you still have time to get your pastelito.

Week Of July 20

  • Lil’ Laos Is Back: Lil’ Laos, a pop-up we really like, will now be operating out of Fooq’s in Downtown, which will pause its own takeout operation until September 30. You can order for takeout or delivery Tue-Sun from noon-8pm. They’ve got things like crispy pig ears, lemongrass chicken, and spicy papaya salad. They join a growing number of pop-ups in Miami. See them all here.

  • Two New “Virtual” Restaurants: Eating House in Coral Gables has launched two “virtual” restaurants that will be available to order from on Postmates. The first is called Bud’s Burgers and it’ll serve (you guessed it) burgers. The second is a fried chicken concept called Clucked Up, which will have wings, chicken and waffles, and sandwiches. Both are open Tue-Sun.

  • Chug’s Gets A Makeover: Our dear Chug’s - home of many excellent sandwiches and the best pastelitos in town - will be closing for renovations on August 2. They’re giving it a pretty big face lift and will reopen with an 85-seat dining room, a juke box, and hopefully the same great food we expect from this place. See you soon, Chug’s.

  • Salmon Ice Cream: Dasher and Crank, a member of our recently published guide to The Best Ice Cream Shops In Miami, is debuting a salmon and cream cheese flavor. It sounds frightening, but if there’s anyone who can pull it off, it’s the fine folks at Dasher. The flavor will be available through August.

Week OF July 13

  • An All Day Pop-Up: This Friday, July 24, All Day is doing a pop-up dinner with Wessel’s Tropical BarBQ. The outdoor dinner will consist of five courses for $65 per person, and there will be things like coconut butter-poached blue crab, queen conch-stuffed chayote, and smoked Florida duck. Make your reservation online.

  • Return Of Broken Shaker: Broken Shaker just started doing weekend brunch again. If you would like to reunite with the Miami Beach spot, grab your reservation online. Their sister restaurant, 27, remains closed for the time being.

  • New Curfew on Ocean Drive: South Beach just got a new 8pm curfew, because even in the middle of a pandemic, it remains Miami’s epicenter of irresponsible and reckless behavior. The curfew doesn’t apply to all of South Beach, though, just Ocean Drive, Collins, and Washington Avenues between Fifth and 16th Streets.

  • TV Dinners Are Cool Again?: The TV dinner is making a comeback in Miami. First, Josh’s Deli debuted theirs with plates including steak, veggies, mashed potato, mac and cheese, meatloaf, and fried chicken. Then, the new Downtown spot Over Under came through with its own vegan TV dinners, available on Sundays. They have a veggie loaf, mashed potatoes with mushroom gravy, green beans, and a vegan brownie. It’s all making us crave a TV dinner, which is a sentence we never thought we’d type.

Week Of July 6

  • Some New Restaurant Rules: In case you haven’t seen (or are just incredibly confused), some new Miami dining rules went into effect this week. You can read about them here, but the gist is: only outdoor dining will be allowed now, in addition to takeout and delivery.

  • Wynwood Restaurants Take To The Streets: In light of these recent rules, a lot of restaurants will try and adapt with more outdoor seating in the coming weeks, especially Wynwood restaurants. KYU has already converted street parking into outdoor seating and places like Zak The Baker are working on it too.

  • Greek Donuts In The Design District: There’s a new dessert spot in Miami that’s open right now. It’s called Meli Gourmet Greek Donuts and they serve loukoumades - a sort of Greek donut - and they’re open for takeout now.

  • Con mucho, mucho amor (y mofongo): The Walter Mercado documentary Mucho Mucho Amor is out on Netflix this weekend. The film was made by Miami filmmakers and heavily features our fine city alongside the life story of the late, great, and fabulous Puerto Rican astrologer himself. For a proper takeout pairing, order from the Puerto Rican restaurant La Placita. Also, let’s all call Ariete and ask them to bring back the Walter Mercado cocktail.

Week Of June 29

  • A New Restaurant In The Rubell: Leku is a Basque restaurant inside Allapattah’s Rubell Museum. It was supposed to open a while ago but, well, you know. So instead it’s finally debuting on July 1 as a lunch pop-up, Wed-Sun from 11am-3:30pm. The menu includes Iberian ham croquettes, mushroom paella, branzino, and cocktails. Reservations are available online and there’s outdoor seating as well.

  • A New Curfew For Restaurants: As coronavirus cases continue to go in the very wrong direction in South Florida, Miami-Dade County recently announced a 10pm curfew. So, whatever your dining plans are, they have to be over by then. Also, strip clubs are officially closed. Fauci would be proud.

  • Return Of The Proof Burger: Taurus in Coconut Grove is bringing back Proof Wednesdays starting this week. Each Wednesday, they’ll offer the very excellent Proof Burger until they run out. If you want one (and you do), they recommend calling ahead at (305) 529-6523 to reserve yours for dine-in or takeout.

  • Hometown And Jaguar Sun Team Up: A special guest will be joining this weekend’s installment of the Jaguar Sun pop-up (which we went to and wrote about). Hometown Barbecue will be collaborating with the Jaguar Sun team this weekend for a special menu. We don’t claim to predict the future, but we have a feeling it’s going to be good.

Week Of June 22

  • Boia De Is Back: Boia De, a place we really love, is opening back up for dine-in service on June 26. Masks will be required (just like everywhere else) and guests will be asked to sanitize their hands immediately upon entry. You can make a reservation online.

  • A New Waterfront Spot: Redfish is finally making its debut in Coral Gables. The new seafood restaurant is located in Matheson Hammock Park and has a pretty fantastic waterfront view. Reservations are available online. See the rest of Miami’s new restaurant openings here.

  • Mac’s Has New Merch: We can not stress how badly we miss dive bars. And while we probably won’t be drinking in them any time soon, we can still support one of our favorites, Mac’s Club Deuce. The classic South Beach bar debuted some brand new merch today in collaboration with Miami artist Ahol Sniffs Glue. Maybe it’ll even smell like cigarettes and bourbon.

  • Free Coffee This Weekend: A new Downtown coffee shop and cafe opened this month. It’s called Borsalino, and in an effort to introduce themselves, they’re giving away free cups of coffee from their pick-up window on Saturday and Sunday between 8am and 2pm.

  • Calling Out The Rule Breakers: A new Instagram account is calling out businesses that aren’t following Covid-19 guidelines. It’s called covid_305, and many of the worst offenders featured on the page are restaurants - like Wynwood’s Astra and Swan, both of which have already been shut down once for a lack of social distancing. It’s also featured a few strip clubs, which, for some reason, are allowed to be open right now.

Week Of June 15

  • A Good Weekend For Ice Cream: Overtown’s Red Rooster still isn’t open yet, but they’re giving a little preview to the public this weekend with a slightly different concept starting June 19. It’s called The Creamery and it’ll serve mostly ice cream, with flavors like brown butter cornbread, and salted caramel. They will also serve fried chicken and sides like mac and cheese.

  • Kush Comes To The Grove: Miami now has two Kush’s, at least for a little while. The wonderful Wynwood restaurant (where we go for some of our favorite burgers in Miami) is taking over its Coconut Grove sister restaurant, Spillover. Kush 2.0 will have a new look and a menu familiar to those who love the original Wynwood location. The restaurant is now open for dine-in service and has a Happy Hour featuring $1 oysters, BOGO draft beers, and $5 appetizers.

  • A Permanent Closure: In some not-so-great news, the Brickell spot Obra announced on Instagram that it will close permanently. We will miss them and their arepas.

  • Baked Goods For A Great Cause: There’s a bake sale happening this weekend at the Vagabond Hotel in MiMo, presented by Bakers Against Racism. The event will feature baked goods from local chefs from Mandolin, Stubborn Seed, and more. 100% of proceeds raised will go to the Community Justice Project and Dream Defenders. It’s happening Saturday, June 20, from 10am-2pm.

Week of June 8

  • We get to welcome back Michael’s Genuine this week. The Design District Greatest Hits restaurant hasn’t been open since quarantine started, but they’re back at it now, offering takeout, delivery, and dine-in service (and yes, they have outdoor seating). Phuc Yea also opens back up for dine-in this Friday. For the first time in a while, they’ll offer seating on their back patio, which is lit up with Chinese lanterns and looks quite pretty at night.

  • Jaguar Sun is doing a cool thing this weekend. For the second week in a row, they’re taking over Lot 6 (a big, outdoor space in Little River) and basically turning it into a much bigger, more humid Jaguar Sun. Dinner seatings are happening Friday and Saturday, and you can email info@jaguarsunmia.com to see if they have any spots left. If they’re sold out, don’t cry. Just keep your eyes on their Instagram to see if they do it again next weekend.

  • Beaches are officially open in Miami. And even though there are rules (including a temporary ban on coolers, inflatable devices, and playing any sort of sports), the opportunity for a beach picnic is still possible. Lolo’s Surf Cantina is offering a beach picnic takeout package for two that comes with burritos, chips and guac, pre-batched margaritas, and a six-foot burrito blanket for $69. Find more spots on our Where To Eat After The Beach guide. All the places on there are currently open.

  • Miami Spice is officially back and will last for four months (until September 30) this year. Although, the number of participating restaurants is way down, which makes sense. See what restaurants are taking part here.

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