Mignonette

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Well, I was back in Miami, and had to hit up some of the places I just didn’t have time for during my last visit. So, I paid a little dinner visit to Mignonette.

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One of the top restaurants in Miami, this seafood spot has a great mix of upscale and casual dining all in one. They have a playful vibe here, but the focus on the food is no joke. We started with some wine, and ordered from the Prix Fixe menu that they were offering that night. I chose to start with the Boston Lettuce (pickled shallots, croutons, buttermilk dressing). All the ingredients were fresh, and the buttermilk dressing was on point, so, this was a pretty fool proof choice, but, I do love a salad. 

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For my entree, I ordered the Grouper (roasted cauliflower with smoked trout roe). I loved this. Grouper might not be an all-around crowd favorite, but I actually really like it. The texture is a bit more firm than most white fish, it’s not as delicate and flakey, but this was still very tender and flavorful. It paired really nicely with the nuttiness of the the roasted cauliflower flavor, which also balanced out the saltiness of the roe. 

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For dessert, I went with their Butterscotch Heath Bar Bread Pudding (cayenne whipped cream). Now, if the name alone doesn’t sell you, maybe this will. Holy F*&k, it was amazing. The saying, “save the best for last” is super relevant here. Don’t get me wrong, everything else was definitely delicious and wonderfully prepared. But, I’m a huge sweet tooth and definitely fell in love with this. It’s served warm, and has a dense, yet light and custardy type of consistency, making it a perfect comfort food. If you’re just out and about, already ate dinner, just go in for this. You can thank me later. 

The Shorts:
Name: Mignonette
Location: 210 NE 18th Street, Miami, FL
The Long and Short: Would I go back? For sure. I really liked the atmosphere, and the food was excellent.
Would I recommend it? Definitely. Whatever you order, I’m sure it’ll be delicious. But whatever you do, don’t leave without that damn bread pudding.

Empire Diner

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Almost eighty years ago, Empire Diner made its debut, but more recently, it was reopened, revamped, and about damn time I went. So, I was off to Chelsea for brunch to check it out. 

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As a genuine boxcar diner, it made me a bit nostalgic of the late Relish Diner in Williamsburg, one of my old favorite spots (RIP). Inside, the aesthetic is clean, crisp and modern, but still pays homage to the old school diner vibe. 

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Everything on the menu sounded amazing, but I had to start with the Bruleed Grapefruit (toasted brioche and cinnamon cream cheese). I’ve had a grapefruit brulee before, but this one was a bit different. Both delicious, but this one had a bit of a different play on it, incorporating the brioche and cinnamon cream cheese. I really loved this, the different flavors and textures compliment each other so wonderfully. The tartness of the grapefruit is offset from the crisp, sweetness of the sugar, the savory, buttery brioche, which is pretty unreal, and the creaminess of the cinnamon cream cheese.

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Then, for my entree I had to go for the Buttermilk Pancakes (fluffy pancakes, maple syrup, blueberry compote). Man alive, these were some incredible pancakes. They were light, pillowy, but still rich in flavor, and the blueberry compote was totally clutch. You can taste the simple freshness and flavor of the blueberries, unlike some of these overly sugared, artificially flavored versions at your run-of-the-mill diner. Pour some maple syrup on this bad boy, and you’ve got a slam dunk, right into my stomach. 

The Shorts:
Name: Empire Diner
Location: 210 Tenth Avenue, NYC
The Long and Short: Would I go back? Absolutely. The atmosphere is awesome, the food is delicious and the service was excellent. 
Would I recommend it? For sure, you won’t be disappointed. It’s also located right by the High Line, so, go have a great meal and take a stroll to then think about how awesome your meal was.