I can officially title Miami as my favourite city that I have ever visited. Everything about it blew me away. The chill vibes, palm trees, white beaches, skyscrapers and the HEAT. I'd almost forgotten what it was like to feel warm.
For anyone planning to visit America, this city needs to be on your list. I really do only have good things to report back, including the gluten free options! Here are my recommendations.
Where to Stay
We stayed in Brickell, the 'Financial district’. Unlike most financial districts, Brickell manages to multipurpose as a hot spot for going out too- I would definitely recommend this area to stay in! We stayed in one of the OB Suites and it was fabulous. The building, amenities and suite itself were immaculately kept and the views from the balcony were fantastic. We also had a kitchenette which was so handy for breakfast. Searching for somewhere with actual gluten free options is a strenuous task in the mornings and I hate wasting $20 on a boring old omelette that I could make myself.
900 S Miami Ave
This busy spot in Brickell not only does gluten free pasta but also does their own sweet potato and zucchini spiralized noodles! I tried both the pasta and the noodles on different nights and I actually have to say, I think I preferred the veggie noodles. They didn't leave me feeling bloated or sluggish but were so satisfying. It helped that the Carbonara sauce I had them with was absolutely DIVINE. They also do gluten free pizza and the waiters are extremely knowledgeable about gluten in general, which is always a plus. I'd also recommend getting a seat outside so you can eye the many glamorous cars, people and fluffy dogs that pass by. 10/10.
788 Brickell Plaza
If you're looking to treat yourself and a fan of sushi, Sugar is the place to go. I'm always a bit sceptical of sushi as it's hard to know what sauces and fish are safe to eat. Sugar specifies on their menu that the sashimi dish is gluten free. You can enjoy it on a rooftop setting with fabulous cocktails. Book in advance, though! This restaurant is very high in demand, especially on the weekends.
901 S Miami Ave Ste 104
I thought I wasn't a big fan of Chinese food, but I was pleasantly surprised with P.F Chang's Ginger chicken dish! P.F Chang's have a full, varied gluten free menu with from wok dishes to fried rice. We actually got this meal delivered as we were too lazy to go out, so I can't say much about the restaurant itself or the service. It definitely fit the bill for what we needed though- a filling, tasty meal right to our doorstep.
Wine & Dine
1414 Brickell Ave
It was so long since I had last treated myself to a steak and Novecento really hit the spot. The steak was grilled and as always, divine. (Love a good steak.) Plus, it was decently priced and the sides were massive! The waiter was lovely and told me that the chips (french fries) were gluten free, much to my delight. They also had gluten free pasta available. Paddy got the salmon and rice which was also gluten free and I can confirm that was delicious too.
Cocktails & Real Food
1000 Collins Ave
South beach was fabulous, but my one piece of advice is to avoid the rip-off tourist trap spots beside it. A menu with pictures is the first warning sign. A Mojito in a fish bowl with colourful bendy straws is the next. Take a turn from that strip, walk no more than one minute and you'll find restaurants with food you can trust, one of which is Fairwind Hotel. You could easily miss this little hidden gem but continue to the back and it's like a little tropical haven. Chilled music, genuine food, amazing cocktails, comfy couches and pretty decor. The waitress was able to tell me the gluten free options which included all of the salads plus the Ceviche. I got the quinoa salad and cancelled it out with 2 creamy Piña Coladas. All about balance.
1111 Collins Ave
Another spot that really stood out to me in South Beach was The Naked Burrito! Again, it's located just a couple of steps away from that busy strip. I loved the diner vibes and the tacos were amazing. Although the menu didn't specify what was and wasn't gluten free, the tortillas were made from corn and the staff were very knowledgeable so I definitely felt safe eating here.
1681 Lenox Ave
After a very long, hot walk from South beach to Miami Beach, we needed to be in the shade and in front of some food and chilled wine very quickly. We luckily arrived at YardHouse just in time for happy hour, so we got all of this for half the price, plus a gluten free menu! We got the queso dip to share with veggies and the waiter very kindly topped up the veggies so we actually ended up getting quite a feed. There were lots of other dinner options on the menu too. I'd definitely recommend this sports bar spot for some appetisers and a few drinks if there's some sort of game on. It had a very chilled vibe and the happy hour is a steal!
Bayside Market Place
401 Biscayne Blvd
My top tip is to download the Uber/Lyft/Lime app on your phone and unlock one of the many electronic scooters that are scattered around the city. It only costs $1 to unlock them, then 15c to use per minute. Park them up when you've reached your destination and off you go. It's such a great way of seeing the city! We scooted to Bayside Market Place and stopped off for some lunch in Largo Bayside. This spot is right by the harbour and has such amazing views of all the boats. I went for the smoked salmon salad and it really hit the spot. It is also a great option for any diabetics on a low carb-diet as it was filled with healthy fats. The waitress was lovely and was able to tell me which dressings were gluten free and which weren't.
So those are all of the places I got to try while I was enjoying my favourite city in the world. Needless to say, I will most definitely be back to try some more. Hope this guide has helped! X