CITY GUIDES | Miami with Chef Nicole Votano

CITY GUIDES | Miami with Chef Nicole Votano

Empanadas, omakase, totopos, and plenty of cocktails for your next vacation.

September 10, 2019
CITY GUIDES | Miami with Chef Nicole Votano

CITY GUIDES | Miami with Chef Nicole Votano

Empanadas, omakase, totopos, and plenty of cocktails for your next vacation.

September 10, 2019
Image iStock aleksandarvelasevic

Nicole Votano has been back and forth across the Atlantic–and the nation–several times in her career, from London, so San Francisco, to New York, so it's not entirely surprising she seems to have landed in the multi-cultural energy of Miami. These days, she's the exec chef at Le Chick, a cocktail, fried chicken, burger focused hot spot in Miami's Wynwood. When she's not at the helm, here's how she enjoys her days. Add these picks to your list for your next vacation, or just double check you've been making the most out of your own backyard.

Breakfast

For breakfast, my favorite places are all chill with a homey vibe. When I'm feeling just a great cup of coffee and a quick pastry I go to Vice City Bean in Edgewater. The staff is great and the coffee never disappoints. If I want more of a whole breakfast experience I go to All Day. The owner Camila is super inspiring, the egg sandwiches are off the chain, and the La Marzocco espresso machine is one of the most beautiful I've ever seen. If I'm down south by the Gables I go to Madruga Bakery. Naomi, the chef/owner is doing what all us chefs want to: not cutting any corners, just making simple fresh food. She even mills her own flour every morning for all the bread and pastries! I even worked there as a cook helping out for a few months to get re-inspired. Don't miss the chicken empanada, it is quite possibly the best in Miami.

All Day
Hot Spot
Downtown Miami, Miami
$, Outdoor Seating, Café, Modern, Breakfast
2 Recommendations

Lunch

For lunch, if I'm feeling like sushi (which I almost always am), I go to Sushi Erika on the 79th Street causeway. The fish is super fresh and Erika is always genuine and hospitable. If you're smart, you'll eat at the counter and let her decide what to feed you, but do not miss the baby squid skewers. For more of a California farm-fresh type meal, I go to Michael's Genuine in the Design District. My go-to is the half chicken and the potato chips with onion dip, but you can't go wrong with the menu. Rosetta on Lenox in South Beach also has awesome Italian bakery food like its speck sandwich on walnut bread.

Dinner

Get Tacos at Taquiza–my favorite is the house-made chorizo served on fresh-ground blue corn tortillas. The totopos with guac are FIRE too. Also, check out Cake Thai on Biscayne for the gritty street-style Thai food. You won't be sorry. Beaker & Grey is one of my absolute favorite dinner spots for a date or with friends. The chef Brian Nasajon excels equally at creating light and refreshing veggies dishes and modern-comfort food dishes, and the drinks by bar manager Ben Potts never cease to amaze me with their creativity and balance.

Beaker & Gray
Hot Spot
Wynwood, Miami
$$$, Full Bar, Modern, Reservations, Outdoor Seating, Happy Hour, New American, Cocktail
3 Recommendations
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