Miami in July ! (part 1)

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ellen4641
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2007/07/18 06:27:15 (permalink)

Miami in July ! (part 1)

Hi,
I took a quick 4 night trip to Miami from July 7th-11th.
Flew from Philly to Miami on American Airlines.

The first 2 nights I stayed at the Homestead Studio Suites/Doral near Miami Airport ($40 a night thru priceline.com, 2 star category)

Next 2 nights I stayed at the Ramada Plaza in Hollywood ($50 a night thru priceline, 2 star)

I was very satisfied with both places; no major complaints.

Now, for the pics...



My plane landed at 10 pm. After I finally got my rental car, I found a happening Cuban restaurant on LeJeune Road near the airport.

here's my 1/2 roasted chicken. (only about $8.00) .(had some good plantain soup with it.)

It came with that nice garlicky natural tasting juices underneath, along with tostones (with that yummy green garlic mojo sauce) and juicy rice . I'm starting to really develop a taste for those fried green plantains. I still like the sweet version, too, but they can often be SO greasy.

Latin Cafe 2000 (www.latincafe2000.com) There are about 4 other locations.

I don't think the chicken came out looking that great in the pic, but it sure tasted good! (espescially at 11:30 pm; I was grateful to get such a good meal at that hour!)

Time to check into my room now. Can't beat this place for $40
In the morning, I took a dip in the attractive enough pool before heading out for the day.

I was very impressed with the architecture at my first stop, the Dolphin Mall. It is located about 7 miles west of Miami Airport. 240 stores!

I spent at least 1/2 an hour in the Borders book store, looking at Miami and other travel books. And I bought about 5 maps of Miami to add to my collection.
There were plenty of entertainment choices for adults and children alike. This next pic shows the signage for the hip bowling alley "Strike" (neon pins, plasma tvs on top of the lanes), Dave and Busters, the Movie theatre, and "Let's Make a Daiquiri".

I could'nt resist getting a "Miami Vice" drink from the Daiquiri place before I went in the mall. It was half pina colada and half strawberry daiquiri (with fresh fruit). Delicious. It was a partial open air setting.

This was not your typical looking mall. Definitely cutting edge...


reminded me of the arhictecture of the Desert Passage shopping mall in Vegas (former Aladdin, now Planet Hollywood casino)
Great southwest motiff!

We'll throw a human being in a pic now (me!) , in case you are starting to get restless!

It would be a good pic, if it was'nt so blurry...

time for lunch now. Here's my pork on left (she had told me it was beef, but my pork suspicions were right. It was too white inside)
In the front left are the slightly burnt but tasty plantains.

On the right is a chicken dish

Lunch was from the Latin Grill in the food court. (it's on the right)
I would say it was pretty good and tasty for a food court place.
For me, it was an accidental pork serving, as I am usually a beef and chicken girl. (I had a few bites or so of the pork; 1st time I ever really had pork, and I do have to admit, it was tasty.)

As you can see, I was pretty fascinated ..

next stop was Miami International Mall, only about a few miles away.
This mall was pretty , too, but had more of a traditional look.
The food court had a Tony Roma's take out stand among their offerings.
Did'nt end up eating or buying anything in this mall, just walking around a little. So we'll give you a break on the mall pics!

Not for long, though! Here's the 1/4 cuban roasted chicken from my next stop, the Dadeland Mall in Kendall. (south of Miami)

It was a steal for about $6.00! And it was delicious! It was served with the requisite plantians and rice, along with some black beans
It was from Cafe Enrique in this food court

Went back to the hotel room to relax and little and watch the news, then it was off to South Beach to take in the nightlife!
And I walked around the infamous Lincoln Road mall
I really enjoyed the "Books and Books" store, where I bought yet another good map. Plus the owner behind the counter was so pleasant.

Now it's Monday morning, July 9th. I check out of my room at the Homewood Suites, and drive practically across the street to the Doral Ale House...(it's a florida small chain of "ale house" restaurants, like the "hollywood ale house", "davie ale house", etc. Started about 20 years ago in jupiter, florida
Here's my buffalo wings, charbroiled burger, and chicken tenders in the back

I'm a real tough buffalo wing connoisseur; these were "servicable", there was nothing wrong with them, so to speak, but they just did'nt really wow me over. I like when the mild sauce has a little more of a buttery flavor to go along with that "zing", etc.
Same with the burger; decent but not "WOW"! I like even MORE of a charred/crusty taste, maybe a little thicker, and a little juicier

Please stay tuned for Miami, ETC , part 2.
That's when I finally hit the beach !

I think you'll enjoy it more than this one... more outdoor pics, etc, and less mall pics! ( I've already cut some pics out of this Part 1;
a little editing can be a good thing !)












#1

15 Replies Related Threads

    UncleVic
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    RE: Miami in July ! (part 1) 2007/07/18 09:11:37 (permalink)
    Who would have thought Mall food to be so interesting.. Nice job Ellen!
    BTW, both of those 1/2 roasted chickens looked awesome...

    #2
    ellen4641
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    RE: Miami in July ! (part 1) 2007/07/18 14:21:55 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by UncleVic

    Who would have thought Mall food to be so interesting.. Nice job Ellen!
    BTW, both of those 1/2 roasted chickens looked awesome...




    thanks so much , Uncle Vic...
    there was even a Crepe stand in the mall....(Crepe places are hard to come by in shopping malls....) (still miss that Magic Pan Crepe restaurant in Paramus Park mall, NJ, RIP)

    As you can see, I love that roasted Cuban chicken.
    I also like getting the picadillo beef dish.
    #3
    HotDogHead
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    RE: Miami in July ! (part 1) 2007/07/18 14:26:13 (permalink)
    Nice job Ellen! I'm looking forward to part two.
    #4
    roossy90
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    RE: Miami in July ! (part 1) 2007/07/18 20:16:49 (permalink)
    I was born and raised in Miami.. Dadeland Mall has grown and grown.
    I remember when it didnt even have a food court, and Jordan Marsh and Burdines had the only restaurants there. It was one of the few malls in the 60's in Miami......
    I had many chicken salad sandwiches at Jordan Marsh with mom in the late 60's and early 70's.....
    ("memorieeeeees...)
    I remember International Mall being built. I worked near there in the early '80's, and we always used to hit TGIF on Fridays after work.....

    #5
    John A
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    RE: Miami in July ! (part 1) 2007/07/19 07:19:52 (permalink)
    Hi Ellen,

    Looks like you had a good time eating your way through Miami. Keep them coming.
    #6
    wanderingjew
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    RE: Miami in July ! (part 1) 2007/07/19 22:09:48 (permalink)
    Ellen,

    I finally had a chance to read the entire report.
    Sounds like you had a great time, H O W E V E R..............
    Buffalo Wings in MIAMI????????" />
    #7
    ellen4641
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    RE: Miami in July ! (part 1) 2007/07/19 23:29:43 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by wanderingjew

    Ellen,

    I finally had a chance to read the entire report.
    Sounds like you had a great time, H O W E V E R..............
    Buffalo Wings in MIAMI????????" />


    yes, Wandering Jew, Buffalo Wings in Miami! I know our philosphies differ on our "roadfood" ordering. (as we've discussed personally on our pizza tour...) You like your sushi in California, while I go gaga for my burger stands, etc. I love to seek out my favorite foods like burgers, hot dogs, prime rib, steaks, fried chicken, buffalo wings; the "best of" in those categories. I did mostly stick to fried chicken in Nashville, though . (Even so, I also enjoyed a good burger from Cheeseburger Charlies, near Vanderbilt University)

    Dale, I believe your Roadfood traveling/ordering style is definitely more "ideal" and makes the most sense . I never developed a taste for pork, veal, or seafood, though,(it's a shame, I know) so I "tailor" design my trips a little more to the stuff I like.
    I did'nt do justice when I was in North Carolina in past years, as PRK bbq is KING there. I could'nt even find one place with my beef ribs. Even brisket was tough to find.
    I do try to get regional specialties as much as I can, though...

    I know I should be ordering stuff like dolphin and conch when in Miami. But I don't do seafood, (except for tuna subs) so I really don't do justice to some of that Miami cuisine.

    But at least I like Cuban food!

    But it does get better for me in my upcoming "Miami, ETC, part 2", as I actually DO find some buffalo wings that I LOVE! (at Wings n Curls in Hollywood). I'm sure you're thrilled to hear THAT, but at least I'll be throwing in some nice beach pics, too.

    #8
    ellen4641
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    RE: Miami in July ! (part 1) 2007/07/19 23:53:56 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by roossy90

    I was born and raised in Miami.. Dadeland Mall has grown and grown.
    I remember when it didnt even have a food court, and Jordan Marsh and Burdines had the only restaurants there. It was one of the few malls in the 60's in Miami......
    I had many chicken salad sandwiches at Jordan Marsh with mom in the late 60's and early 70's.....
    ("memorieeeeees...)
    I remember International Mall being built. I worked near there in the early '80's, and we always used to hit TGIF on Fridays after work.....



    thanks for the interesting tidbits, roosy90. I often will ask the info desk how long a mall has been open. The teenage girl at the Miami International Mall had "no idea", which is a typical answer I get. (that means I've got to go to wikipedia.com when I get home!)

    It looked like that Dadeland Mall had various parts thrown together,(that hodgepodge look), as one had to walk through the whole 1st floor of Macy's to get to the rest of the mall. (macy's may have been the end of the mall at one time, but now it's dead center)

    I noticed the Nordstroms in that Dadeland Mall had a restaurant/cafe inside their store.
    Glad there are a few of those department store lunch counters still around,...(can't beat those Woolworth days though)
    It was nice hearing that you had good chicken salad memories with your mom. That's what lifes' all about. (real LIVE interacting and bonding)

    #9
    waiterhell
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    RE: Miami in July ! (part 1) 2007/07/20 00:35:51 (permalink)
    Why the heck does ANYBODY want to be in Miami during late July....August...or early Spetember???
    #10
    ellen4641
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    RE: Miami in July ! (part 1) 2007/07/20 12:49:43 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by waiterhell

    Why the heck does ANYBODY want to be in Miami during late July....August...or early Spetember???


    that's a VERY good question! (I was almost waiting for someone to ask that...)

    I usually do go like going in the wintertime mostly, but I had some airline ticket credit on American to use up by July 15th...(use it or lose it)

    I was able to go round trip for $150 (inc. taxes/fees) from PHL-MIA; real good deal, so I chose Miami on a lark!!
    #11
    MiamiDon
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    RE: Miami in July ! (part 1) 2007/07/20 13:22:25 (permalink)
    I am glad that you are having a good time, but I see that I have some work to do to keep visiting RoadFoodies out of the malls and chain restaurants!

    Watch out for sunburn...
    #12
    ellen4641
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    RE: Miami in July ! (part 1) 2007/07/20 15:21:48 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by MIAMIDON

    I am glad that you are having a good time, but I see that I have some work to do to keep visiting RoadFoodies out of the malls and chain restaurants!

    Watch out for sunburn...


    nice hearing from you, miamidon...

    if I go to chains while traveling it's only going to be small (restaurants with only a handful of locations) and/or regional ones.
    I will occasionally go to a Steak n Shake or a Claimjumper in my travels.

    I do like malls for the "local flavor" people watching, the book stores, and seeing if just perhaps there are actually some uncommon restaurants in the food court. (instead of the ubiquitous ones)

    My favorite places to go , though, are outdoor little downtown villages .. cause of the fresh air bonus.


    #13
    roossy90
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    RE: Miami in July ! (part 1) 2007/07/20 20:56:34 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by ellen4641

    Originally posted by MIAMIDON


    My favorite places to go , though, are outdoor little downtown villages .. cause of the fresh air bonus.




    Coconut Grove is a nice little side trip.....from the hustle and bustle of South Beach.. I used to frequent there quite often...
    I Remember when the "hippies" used to hang at Peacock Park back in the late 60's and early 70's.......
    Eat at Lum's and watch the hippes get stoned....
    Those were the days......ahhhhhh...............
    #14
    ellen4641
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    RE: Miami in July ! (part 1) 2007/07/20 22:11:17 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by roossy90

    quote:
    Originally posted by ellen4641

    Originally posted by MIAMIDON


    My favorite places to go , though, are outdoor little downtown villages .. cause of the fresh air bonus.




    Coconut Grove is a nice little side trip.....from the hustle and bustle of South Beach.. I used to frequent there quite often...
    I Remember when the "hippies" used to hang at Peacock Park back in the late 60's and early 70's.......
    Eat at Lum's and watch the hippes get stoned....
    Those were the days......ahhhhhh...............


    Coconut Grove is pretty, but the last time I went a few years or so ago, I was disappointed to see that too many CHAINS were taking over!
    I thought it was losing too much of it's local flavor.
    And just like Key West, the hippies (aging hippies) are getting priced out..
    #15
    mr chips
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    RE: Miami in July ! (part 1) 2007/07/22 00:54:08 (permalink)
    I envy your time in Miami. I've never really been able to spend much time there.
    #16
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