Get Your Adult Sugar High On At Sugar Factory Miami

When you first walk up to Hotel Victor on Miami Beach’s Ocean Drive you see people sitting outside at tables with friends having casual conversation. Then, when you look at their table you notice many things. You may notice that they have large goblets filled with alcohol and gummies, or maybe you smell the buttermilk-fried chicken and mac n cheese they are eating.

As you follow your hostess inside you walk into what seems to be a candy store taken right out of heaven. You have gelato, and large candy bars, and you can even make your own goodie bag filled with all of your favorite candy. Finally, you are taken to your table. You may ask, where are you? Well, my friends, you have made it to Sugar Factory

Having opened up shop already in places like NYC and Las Vegas, this is the first Sugar Factory “down south.” This American Brassiere prides itself on offering its guests not only a delicious, but also a very memorable experience. Their menu boasts items like a s’mores crepe, salmon salad, jalapeño burger, and my personal favorite, the fried chicken with mac n cheese. 

Besides offering an array of food, Sugar Factory also believes in giving guests an unforgettable experience when it comes to their drinks. Their premium cocktails are meant to mix sweet treats with spiked adult beverages. The drinks that are the most fun to consume have to be the goblets. I really enjoyed the Ocean Blue, which was vodka based and came with shark gummies! Plus, how can you say no to a s’mores chocolate martini that comes with toasted marshmallows on top?

Last, but most definitely not least in any sense, is Sugar Factory’s dessert. I know this may be tough, but you have to save room for dessert no matter what you do. If you are going with a big group of people then you have to order the legendary King Kong Sundae, which can serve either up to 12 or 24 people. And, if you are just going with your boyfriend and you don't want to “overdo it,” then order the brownie ice cream sandwich. 

Sugar Factory is five stars in my book!

Check out the below photos and Tastemade video!

Ocean Blue & Lollipop Passion Goblets

Ocean Blue & Lollipop Passion Goblets

Cookie Jar & Red Velvet Milkshakes

Cookie Jar & Red Velvet Milkshakes

Salmon Salad

Salmon Salad

Jalapeño Burger

Jalapeño Burger

Fried Chicken & Mac n Cheese

Fried Chicken & Mac n Cheese

Brownie Ice Cream Sandwich

Brownie Ice Cream Sandwich

King Kong Sundae

King Kong Sundae

Get Your Italian Fix At Galli In SoHo

SoHo has its fair share of food options. Every street you explore, whether it’s Lafayette, Grand or Broadway, you are going to have an endless amount of options to choose from. For lunch one day I was able to check out Galli, which is known for their Italian comfort food.

Their snacks, or appetizers, are truly on point. When you stop at Galli you have to order the baby rice balls without a doubt. I know it may sound strange to some people, but when you mix green peas, chopped meat, mozzarella and pomodoro all together it tastes like heaven. You can also order the grilled calamari plate for those who are watching their diet!

If you are really hungry and looking for a great meal I highly suggest you order one of their pastas. Some of the crowd favorites are: Norma (rigatoni, eggplant, ricotta salata, pomodoro), Amatriciana (rigatoni, onions, pancetta, filetto pomodoro), and the Pescatore (spaghetti, shrimp, mussels, clams, marinara or garlic olive oil). All of these pastas are always on point because chef and co-owner Steven Gallo makes sure of it. 

Now, for those of you who still want look somewhat lean throughout the summer months then head to the salad menu. Still on the kale bandwagon? Then you should order the Kale salad, which comes with orange, almonds, avocado, carrots and an orange olive oil. I personally love steak salads, and Galli’s is top on my list. I also made sure to add some avocado.

Overall, I’m in!

Grilled calamari

Grilled calamari

Magic mushrooms

Magic mushrooms

Rice balls

Rice balls

Steak salad w/ avocado

Steak salad w/ avocado

Charcuterie Night at db Bistro Moderne Is The Place To Be

Looking for something different to do tonight? If this is the case then head over to db Bistro Moderne and indulge in their Charcuterie Night. Every Monday night you can pick up unlimited plates of charcuterie from their “wine cave,” plus a glass of wine for only $35. Talk about a GNO!

So what kind of charcuterie are we talking about? You have pate, terrines, sliced meats, cured meats, which will come with all the fixings (olives, mustards, marmalades, cornichons, pickles vegetables). When you check out my Tastemade video below you will see that I specifically tried, which was the Truffle Boudin Blanc, Smoked Liverwurst, Pate Champagne, Duck and Foie Gras Pate Encrout, Prosciutto cotto, Tete de Cochon, and Mortadella.

Besides Charcuterie Night you can also take advantage of their stellar happy hour menu, which is from 5 – 8 p.m. I ordered their Truffle Pizza (with fine herbs and some sea salt), Mezze Plate (with smoked eggplant, ricotta, and hummus), and their “Frenchie” sliders (came with rillion, morbier cheese and caramelized onions).

Keep in mind that their wine selection rotates every week with selections by Sommelier Alan Feldman, so every Monday night is different!

For a full lowdown on db Bistro’s Charcuterie Night check out my Tastemade video here, or below!

db_Bistro_Charcuterie_Night
db_Bistro_Charcuterie_Night_2
db_Bistro_Charcuterie_Night_3

Crave A Healthy Lifestyle With Crave Clean Protein Bake Shop

Are you looking for something equally delicious and nutritious here in Miami? Look no further because in the heart of Miami on 8th and 37th Ave. you will find Crave Clean, a small bake shop owned and operated by Miami local, Francesca Caltagirone.

Francesca started her business in her own kitchen giving healthy treats to her friends and family. She then started to notice the need for a healthy go-to bake shop here in Miami. Crave Clean believes in the power of clean eating: “If you don't recognize an ingredient your body won’t either.” The shop really prides itself on bridging the gap between fitness and foodies (my exact scenario). 

The awesome thing about Crave Clean’s nutritious sweets is that they are packed with protein and less than one gram of sugar! They will make the perfect guilt-free snack for those that need something sweet for their coffee in the morning, or after a serious workout. 

My personal favorite goodies are the Don’t be BlueBerry Muffin and the Carrot Cupcake. Also, make sure to pick up at least one of her Goo-Whey Brownies – this is what she is known for!

Crave Clean isn’t just a bakery, it’s a lifestyle!

Muffins

Muffins

Brownies

Brownies

Crave Clean Protein Bake Shop

Crave Clean Protein Bake Shop

Enjoy An Unforgettable Culinary Experience At 15th & Vine Kitchen and Bar

I have been meaning to check out 15th & Vine Kitchen and Bar for a while now. Lately I have heard so many good things about the ambiance and food that I had to try it, and I have to tell you that I wasn't the least bit disappointed. Soaring 15 floors above the Brickell chaos and construction, 15th and Vine at the Viceroy truly offers an exceptional culinary experience for your taste buds, while at the same time giving you an amazing view to look at.

Let’s talk about the food. First, it is important to mention that the menu is seasonal, so there may be a few items mentioned in this post that will soon be rotated out for the season. The contemporary American menu is designed with an emphasis on small, yet still very flavorful portions that have a blend of Latin, Asian and Italian flavors.

For your appetizer I highly recommend you order the Korean Rib Tacos. The plate comes with two tacos stacked high with mango slaw and a spicy Korean salsa roja. Perfect to open up you palate. And if you are a yucca lover then order their yucca fries. It’s perfect to share with a larger table. 

15th & Vine is also known to serve some pretty delicious flatbreads. There are literally no words for the braised bacon, apple and spiced pecan flatbread. Hands down probably one of the most innovative and yet delicious flatbreads I have had in a while.

Now, if you really want to get a feel for the menu you should definitely check out either the Tasting Menu or the Chef’s Favorites. This will allow you to try a little bit of everything and really enjoy the culinary experience 15th & Vine has to offer. 

Check out my full Tastemade video review below for the full lowdown!

Korean short rib tacos

Korean short rib tacos

Bacon, apple and spiced pecan flatbread

Bacon, apple and spiced pecan flatbread

Lou’s Beer Garden is All About Flavor and Quality

When you first park outside of The New Hotel in the MiMo District you may think, can there really be such an awesome beer garden hiding in the back? When you walk in at the hotel’s side entrance you notice now that you are walking through a terrace, or a pool patio. There are chairs and small tables scattered around the pool and the walkway – you have now entered Lou’s Beer Garden.

Lou has owned and operated the hotel and beer garden by the pool for over seven years and prides himself in providing only the best quality food and a great selection of craft and rare specialty beers. My personal favorite is the Dogfish Olde School Barleywine. What makes this beer so great is that it’s fermented with dates and figs, which gives this smooth barleywine a unique sweet flavor. But, be careful – it does have 15% ABV!

When it comes to the food there are many delicious options to choose from. If you get there early enough make sure to order the Pizza of the Week. Lou hand makes and rolls this dough in house, and puts together only the best ingredients, but it runs out very quickly! If you don't get the pizza then definitely try either the Strongbow Chicken or the Big Angus Burger, and add some Brie.

I also have to say that Lou makes one of the best Key Lime Pie’s I have had in a long time. He adds the perfect amount of merengue, and the homemade graham crust is divine. 

Check out my full Tastemade video review below! Make sure to download the app on your iPhone or Android, too!

Beer sampler & the Dogfish Olde School Barleywine 

Beer sampler & the Dogfish Olde School Barleywine 

Get Your BBQ Fix At Bulldog Barbecue and Burger

Ever since I can remember I have had a serious love affair for BBQ. I am that girl who not only goes out of her way to find the best brisket or pulled pork in town, but I am also the one at the dinner table to who asks for a side of BBQ sauce.

Last weekend I finally made it over to Bulldog Barbecue and Burger over in North Miami, where I met celebrity chef and owner Howie “Bulldog” Kleinberg. You may ask, how did he get that nickname? In 2007 he stared in Top Chef Miami, and it was there where he acquired this nickname for his take no prisoners competitive streak.

Since the restaurant first opened in 2009, Howie prides himself in taking the BBQ items that you love to the next level. My personal favorite is his brisket. I don’t know about you, but I love when there is still a charred finish on the edges of the brisket leaving that smoky taste in your mouth. Howie is known for his brisket so you must try it.

When you are pairing your pulled pork and brisket make sure to get a side of cornbread and the burnt end beans. And for those of you who are looking for something a bit different then you have to check out Howie’s burger menu. Some of the famous items are the Luther, Hawaii Five-O and Honky-Tonky Woman.

Last but not least, you must save room for dessert. My personal favorites are the milk and cookies (this comes with heath bar cookies!), the fried apple turnover and their take on a s’mores dessert. You will not regret this decision.

For my full video food review check out my Tastemade video below, and make sure to download the app!

Brisket, pulled pork & ribs

Brisket, pulled pork & ribs

Fried apple turnover, milk and cookies & s'mores

Fried apple turnover, milk and cookies & s'mores

Get A Real Taste of Latin American Food at Sabores by Chef James

Chef James Tahhan is the mastermind chef behind Sabores by Chef James. Having started in the kitchen at a very young age, James is now a TV personality on Telemundo sharing what he knows about the kitchen to the world. Besides showcasing his delicious recipes to the masses on national TV, James also has his own restaurant. 

Don't be fooled by the fact that Sabores is right off of Le Juene and Flager in Miami inside of a Best Western because James is serving up some delicious food. He prides himself in putting together food combinations that include ingredients from many different Latin American countries, really taking those who eat his dishes on an incredible journey through his food. 

First you have to try one of Chef James’ famous cocktails. Without a doubt you have to try his version of the mojito, which comes with muddled blueberries and coconut rum. The perfect drink to have on a hot Miami summer day. And for those who aren’t into mojitos then go for the Cucumber Fizz, which comes with St. Germain and is topped with champagne for the perfect bubbly touch!

Now when it comes to food Chef James makes sure to not only add his personal touch to all of his dishes, but also make sure he continues combining different flavors from several countries. For example, his ceviche has more of an Ecuadorian flare – with ketchup, mustard, olive oil, lemon, and oranges the creamy texture and sweetness of the shrimp and ketchup truly blends perfectly.

You also have to try the arepas. Chef James serves his shredded beef arepas with an Amarillo paste and mayo cilantro and habanero sauce on the side. My advice? Make sure to blend all of the flavors together for maximum taste!

For dinner make sure to check out the pork confit. The pork is cooked low and slow for about ten hours. They then cold pressed in house and cut over smoky sweet potatoes with a little bit of cream, and lima beans. Total perfection.

And for dessert Chef James offers a tree in a pot, which is actually made with a vegan mouse! Instead of it being made out of milk it is made with avocados. You get the perfect blend of flavors between the avocado, coconut oil and caramel/chocolate sauce. You can’t go wrong.

*Disclaimer: The food shown in the photos below are not true to size. These are photos from a Yelp event.

Blueberry mojito

Blueberry mojito

Cucumber fizz

Cucumber fizz

Shrimp ceviche

Shrimp ceviche

Beef arepa

Beef arepa

Bacon wrapped date

Bacon wrapped date

Guacamole 

Guacamole 

Smoked fish dip

Smoked fish dip

Pork confit

Pork confit

Tree in a pot

Tree in a pot

David Bracha’s Oak Tavern Takes Root in the Miami Design District

When you first walk into Oak Tavern the majestic giant oak tree that has been transplanted in the middle of its outdoor patio immediately enamors you. You suddenly feel like you are somewhere else, much more magical. As you walk into the dinning area you notice the large, welcoming bar with dimmed mood lighting and the large selection of wine and spirits. If you are ordering a cocktail order the Deaths Door Bramble, and order it with gin.  

When putting together the menu, Chef Bracha made sure to put together your favorite comfort foods, along side his famous oysters that made his other restaurants, River Seafood Oyster & Bar, really stand out. My personal small plate favorite are the BBQ spare ribs, which come with a delicious chili sauce you just can’t resist. And if you are an oyster lover then you have to try his Shigoku Oysters.

Now, as far as the main dish I highly recommend you eat the duck confit wood oven pizza. For those of you who aren’t really into duck I still recommend you try it. The blend of mushrooms, with fontina and the truffle is beyond divine. And for those of you who don’t want to get too crazy then go for either the grass fed cheeseburger, and add an egg or bacon, or order the braised short ribs with the mac & cheese.

One of the most insanely delicious desserts I have ever had was here at Oak Tavern, the peanut butter mousse pie. Let’s just say that I visited this restaurant with my sister and we had to take turns on eating the slice of pie – it was that good.

Deaths Door Bramble Cocktail

Deaths Door Bramble Cocktail

Homemade biscuits

Homemade biscuits

BBQ short ribs

BBQ short ribs

Duck confit pizza

Duck confit pizza

Cheeseburger

Cheeseburger

Peanut butter mousse pie

Peanut butter mousse pie

Best Mofongo In Miami at Jimmy’z Kitchen

For those of you who don't know what mofongo is - it's a fried plantain-based dish, which originated in Puerto Rico. It is typically made with fried green plantains, mashed together in a pilón (a wooden mortar and pestle), with some garlic, olive oil and then you add in your protein. You can have it with shrimp, chicken, beef, or my favorite, pork. Considering all of this my friends over at Jimmy’z Kitchen know what they are doing when it comes to making their mofongo – in my opinion, the best in Miami.

Besides having the most delicious mofongo in the city they also serve up some pretty delicious plates. For example, for your appetizer you should be trying their yuca frites. And if you are a plantain lover like me order the arañitas, which is essentially shredded fried plantain served with “Puerto Rican sauce,” i.e. mayo and ketchup. Oh, and if you are cheese lover then order the bolitas de queso with guava sauce. Enough said.

What’s really cool about Jimmy’z Kitchen fast casual concept is that Jimmy makes sure to have healthier options on his menu as well. I personally love the fajita salad with chicken. It comes stacked with peppers, corn, cheddar jack cheese, with mixed greens, and topped with tortilla chips. 

Last but not least, let’s talk dessert. We were told that Jimmy’s abuela actually trained those in the kitchen and taught them how to make her homemade desserts. The two I recommend you try are the coconut flan and the guava cheesecake. I would order both if I were you. That’s how good they are.

P.S. They have an awesome craft beer selection in the Wynwood location!

Aranitas

Aranitas

Yuca frites

Yuca frites

Bolitas de queso w/guava sauce

Bolitas de queso w/guava sauce

Tuna tiradito

Tuna tiradito

Tostones

Tostones

Fajita salad w/ chicken

Fajita salad w/ chicken

Steak frites

Steak frites

Pork mofongo

Pork mofongo

Craft beer

Craft beer

Coconut flan & Guava cheesecake

Coconut flan & Guava cheesecake