It has been the summer of surprises. We ventured off to different places around our beloved city, sometimes out of pure boredom, but most times, we just wanted to check out the city we constantly see through the lens of other people’s excited social media updates as visitors. It’s incredible how your appreciation for something you’ve always known can double, even triple, due to the attention it receives from others. All of a sudden you’re like,”hey! that’s my city! I live here? Why am I not enjoying it?”
Kia kicked off my summer with style and SOUL, which we rode around town in week! Our first stop in the cute cherry red Soul was popular Miami neighborhood Wynwood.
It was our first time taking Abe to Wynwood, and I really didn’t know what to expect. Would it be crowded? How kid-friendly is it? Most importantly, where would we eat that won’t overrun by the waves of hipsters/tourists that have taken over the area? We decided to focus on hunting down the most addicting pop-up dessert trailer to hit Miami, The Salty Donut. As soon as we found it, I quickly jumped out and we scored a box filled with their baked chocolate cake, nutella, and traditional donuts. Totally worth making Ozzy wait there in the middle of Wynwood with his hazards on.
Once we fueled up with sweet, chocolate ganache calories, we got the stroller and made our way to Wynwood Walls, strolling along the streets and avenues and taking it all in.
Abe perfected the side-eye due to all the instagram poses I was trying to accomplish while in Wynwood.
We had a real, non donut filled lunch at popular taco spot Coyo Taco, which was good, but not “drive out to Wynwood from Kendall just to have them” good. Their cochinita pibil and al pastor did hit the spot though sooo, I’ll definitely be hitting up their Brickell location if I am ever in that area. I’ve done the drive for Panther Coffee before they had various locations. But Panther Coffee is an almost religious experience if you’re a serious coffee drinker -especially one like me that doesn’t require whipped cream and a blender to satisfy my caffeine fix. Their cold brew can save the world.
Later that week, I joined Miami’s media maven Vanessa James for the first of her event series “Cocktails and Concerts” at the Fillmore Miami Beach to see the one and only Tori Kelly! Aside from being #curlyhair goals, Tori’s song “unbreakable smile” can basically be the anthem for which I live my life. She was flawless, and I loved how I was able to jam out to her music with an easy bluetooth connection to the KIA. The sound was amazing!
Kia, it was an unforgettable week! We had one more stop, and it was to the up and coming hotspot Downtown Doral, which is definitely on it’s way to being the next Midtown with its shops and restaurant options. We decided to go to DRAGONFLY, which originated in Gainesville, so I was VERY familiar with the restaurant being an UF alumni.
But man oh man was I in for a BIG SURPRISE. Turns out, the owners of DRAGONFLY pride themselves on having different concepts at their various locations ( their second one is in Orlando) and this location definitely had a more authentic vibe and concept that the Gainesville location ( which was the hot spot to be seen at on a Friday night for dinner). It felt like I did-a grown-up, with a palate for something different.
When we went the entrance had all these great Japanese knick knacks and souvenirs…and I believe it will soon become a fish market.
We brought Abe along, and although the restaurant as an impressive open bar overlooking the hustle and bustle of Downtown Doral…They are very accommodating to kids if you don’t have a sitter, or if it’s just a dinner date with the family. They even had a kids menu with chicken katsu, which, to our surprise, Abe loved! It was his first time having it and it gave it two sticky highfives.
We had delicious cocktails, while Abe sipped from his sippy….
The star of the show was the Satori roll, which is stacked with snow crab delight, scallion, cilantro, red & green peppers, avocado, yellow tail, garlic sauce, and garlic chips. It was a flavor bomb, of the best kind.
This beauty is known as Ryu, stuffed with salmon, snow crab delight, red onion, cucumber, tempura flakes topped with avocado, torched tuna, togarashi, eel sauce, kobachi sauce. It was so meaty, smokey, yet rounded out with the freshness of the cucumber and avocado. Satisfying!
As much as I loved the sushi, what I will recommend to share time and time again is this perfection right here….
Just take it all in.
Dragonfly’s version of fish and chips… japanese beer batter halibut, furikake, japanese tartar, smoked soy vinegar…I could’ve had that all night and been a very happy woman!
One of the other dishes Abe loved that took Ozzy and me by surprise was the grilled baby octopus, which is actually served with pickled cucumber, heirloom cherry tomato, japanese chimichurri, shiso, and tosazu. Perfect for a hot summer day! Or any day really.
Now, every restaurant has an underdog dish…the dish that probably gets ignored or looked over unless there is a vegetarian at the table. The dish at Dragonfly is the Cauliflower Goma Miso, which is this delicious savory blend of roasted tri-cauliflower, golden raisins, pine nuts. The flavors are unbelievable!
Their open kitchen was awesome, love that you can just pull up a chair and watch the chefs at work!
What an AMAZING SUMMER!
Now, who’s ready to take on the fall?