Matador Room – Miami, FL
Located in The Miami Beach EDITION Hotel, this is a restaurant not to miss while you’re in Miami. You walk through the bar on your way to the dining room which is stunning in itself with floor to ceiling photos of matadors doing what they do best. The colors are rich and inviting, definitely a swanky hangout for a drink and nibbles.
We sat outside on the terrace rather than in the main dining room which was very lovely and green with plants hanging above and all around. Overall our meal was spectacular from start to finish. So much fresh seafood, I could have eaten here every day. Absolutely nothing about this meal was disappointing.
Spicy Tuna Tartare, Black Olive, Cucumber and Avocado
Florida Stone Crab, Mustard Sauce and Dill Dip
Crispy Florida Black Grouper Tacos, Aioli and Cabbage-Chili Pickle
Raw Shaved Florida Red Snapper with Green Chili Dressing, Crunchy Rice and Herbs
Roasted Snapper, Sweet Chili-Garlic Sauce, Crunchy Potatoes and Farm Beans
Tres Leches Cake, Glazed Pineapple
Warm Vanilla Fritters, Mexican Chocolate
Grilled Snapper with Mango-Avocado Salsa
This recipe is derived from the one and only Gwyneth Paltrow however she uses halibut in her recipe but because I don’t care for halibut, I’ve substituted it with red snapper and I’ve also modified the cooking technique such that I use a grill pan rather than the BBQ. I don’t own a gas BBQ, only a charcoal Weber, and although I love the taste, it’s just not as convenient for a simple recipe like this…hence why I use the grill pan! This is a super easy recipe and quite healthy.
- 1 medium ripe avocado, peeled and cut into 1/2″ dice
- 1 medium ripe mango, peeled and cut into 1/2″ dice
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes, quartered
- 4 large fresh basil leaves, thinly sliced
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided, plus more for brushing
- 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice, divided
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 4 6-ounce red snapper fillets
- 4 lime wedges
Gently combine the avocado, mango, tomatoes, basil, 1 tablespoon oil, and 1 tablespoon lime juice in a large mixing bowl. Season salsa to taste with salt and pepper and set aside at room temperature, gently tossing occasionally.
Place fish fillets in a 13x9x2″ glass baking dish. Drizzle remaining 2 tablespoon oil and 2 tablespoon lime juice over. Season fish with salt and pepper. Let marinate at room temperature for 10 minutes, turning fish occasionally.
Prepare a grill pan on med-high heat. Grill fish until just opaque in center, about 3 minutes per side. Transfer to plates. Spoon mango-avocado salsa over fish. Squeeze a lime wedge over each and serve.
The Blvd – Beverly Hills, CA
There’s no better place in Beverly Hills to eat well and have the best people watching right in front of you. Located in the timeless Beverly Wilshire at the tail end of Rodeo Drive, The Blvd comes with a high price tag but it’s THE quintessential Beverly Hills experience.
Almost every time I’m there I get the Seafood Salad. It’s changed over the years but is never disappointing to me and comes with the highest quality of seafood one would expect for a $33 salad. My husband started with the Lobster Salad which was divine. I especially loved the green apple. It added such a lovely acidity and made the dish perfectly balanced. For his entrée he got the Veal Schnitzel…whoa…I had a tinge of order envy but luckily he was nice enough to give me a couple of bites. The veal was pounded thin and cooked to perfection. So tender and full of flavor…this was definitely a success. My only advice is to add a good squeeze of lemon juice on top. It brightens the dish and makes it not as heavy tasting.
Just to name a few, Bob Green, Mariel Hemingway and André Leon Talley were all dining there the last time I was there for lunch. Does it get much better than that?! Go!
Great selection of breads
Maine Lobster Salad – green apple, avocado, jicima, lemon oil vinaigrette
Seafood Salad – pickled butternut squash, octopus, prawns, lobster, scallops, white port and hazelnut oil
Veal Schnitzel – fingerling potato salad, red radishes, lemon butter
I feel lucky to have the Pike Place Market so close to my house. Does that mean I go there as often as I should? No. My excuse? I’d probably default to the lack of parking but at the same time there are lots you can pay for so that’s not good enough. The truth is I have no excuses and should go there more often. It’s not just a tourist’s destination. It’s a local market full of farm fresh produce, seafood, affordable fresh flowers…it’s our local farmers that we should be supporting more. Not to mention all the ready-to-eat food. Where do I start?! I’m a sucker for Beecher’s…DeLaurenti Specialty Food & Wine…The Crumpet Shop…Piroshky-Piroshky…Lowell’s…La Buona Tavola Truffle Cafe and Specialty Foods…the list could go on and on. My advice is to go in the late morning and eat your way through for lunch:) Go with a friend and share so you’re not stuffing your face but so you can try enough different things without feeling like your pants are going to pop.
La Buona Tavola Truffle Cafe and Specialty Foods – go for some great wine tasting and tastes of truffle goods…yum!
Mr. D’s Greek Deli – great gyro’s here!
Beecher’s Cheese – there’s a viewing window to show you how and where the cheese is made not to mention plenty of delicious foods to buy. The “World’s Best” Mac & Cheese is pretty amazing…the name says it all.
Piroshky – Piroshky – Does it get much better than a beef and onion piroshky? Nope:)
Mandoo – New York, NY
On our recent trip to NYC we met a few friendly locals at a bar who gave us some very helpful tips, one that lead us to Mandoo (the Korean word for dumplings), a little spot that’s easy to pass by in the heart of K Town (Korea Town). Being fans of Korean food already we knew we were going to love this and we did! Before you even walk in you know the food is going to be fresh seeing the Korean ladies in the windows making the mandoo. Because it was our last day and we were on a mission to finish out some mandatory eating spots, we knew we needed to eat light and just get appetizers. We decided on the Goon and Seafood Mandoo dumplings…both delicious in their own way. One is boiled, the other pan-fried. One is seafood, the other pork. If you’re in NYC and happen to be in K Town, I highly recommend this spot for either a light bite or a full meal (they’re open all day until 10pm). I’m dying to get back and try the Kimchee Mandoo – steamed dumplings filled with Korean Kimchee, tofu, pork and other vegetables. Yum!
The cute little ladies making dumpling after dumpling
Goon Mandoo – lightly pan-fried dumplings filled with pork and veggies
Seafood Mandoo – Boiled dumplings filled with shrimp, crabsticks and vegetables
Joe Jack’s Fish Shack – Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
My dad and his wife have a home in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico where we’re lucky enough to go visit from time to time. I always get my Mexican food fix while down there but I also indulge in all the fresh seafood. One of my favorites spots is Joe Jack’s Fish Shack. Chef Joe Jack moved from San Francisco (previous owner and chef of Luna Park…another old favorite of mine in SF) to PV and opened the Fish Shack in 2005 in hopes of showcasing traditional seafood (and Mexican comfort food) at the same time creating a great vibe. The best spot in house is on the exposed roof deck. You don’t have to worry about rain that often in PV which is nice.
My all time favorite dish (that I think about quite often) is the Whole Pacific Red Snapper. It’s covered with roasted chilies, garlic and lime and couldn’t be more tasty. I LOVE it!!! Their ceviche is also amazing…so fresh and full of flavor. Talking about it makes me want to fly down there just to have this:)
Milos – New York, NY
I found out about Milos on Gwyneth Paltrow’s newsletter GOOP which featured New York. I knew from her write up that it was going to be a pricey meal (she didn’t disappoint there) however, being Greek and having high expectations, it ended up being one of the best meals I’ve ever had!
The space is fairly large with white walls, tall ceilings and every seat was filled. We had an 8pm reservation and were there until 10pm something. New York is a non-stop city that’s for sure.
If your wallet can stand the price tag, put this place at the top of your list. I am already looking forward to going back to NYC and having a delicious dinner at this fabulous spot.
I loved this detail…heads of garlic were used to hold down the cheesecloth used as a wall separator. Brilliant!Just like in Turkey this past summer, we got to go pick out our fish for dinner. Fish is flown in twice daily to the restaurant so you know you’re getting it fresh!Octopus – sashimi grade Mediterranean octopus char-grilled
Grilled Calamari – stuffed with Cretan Anthotiro, feta, manouri cheese, and fresh mint. Served with fava, saffron.Grilled sea bream – served with olive oil and lemon sauceOur little fried fish:) I can’t remember the name of it but it was recommended that we get it fried and holy cow was it good. It was so buttery and tender. I could have eaten a few of this little guys.And to end the night…what else would we order at a Greek restaurant besides Loukoumades?!