When it comes to dining out in South Florida, most folks envision long nights and late dinners, fueled by cocktails and wine and a restless sense of energy and excitement. That’s all well and good, and certainly the greater Miami boasts one of the best nightlife scenes in the nation, but don’t overlooking the city’s sterling steakhouses come lunchtime. From bounteous salads to meaty sandwiches, Miami’s steakhouses bring their A-game for the midday crowds too. Be it a power lunch or a leisurely nosh, here are the best Miami area steakhouses for that lunch fix.
Prime 112: Located in the Browns Hotel, you know Prime 112 has its lunch game up to speed. Indeed, this contemporary steakhouse features top-tier cooking at all hours of the day, with a lunch menu that bursts at the seams with decadent dishes and shareable plates. Graze on Hawaiian big-eye tuna tartare and Key West calamari before digging into entrees like a lobster Cobb salad, fried grouper sandwiches or the almighty Kobe corned beef sandwich with housemade smoked bacon sauerkraut and 1,000 Island dressing on toasted marble rye. For a fun Floridian riff on a lunch staple, try the crispy calamari Caesar, an indulgent salad strewn with fresh seafood, roasted peppers and shaved Parmesan.
Flagler Steakhouse: Located at the world-famous (and unabashedly ritzy) Breakers Palm Beach, the equally Flagler Steakhouse provides the perfect dose of pomp and circumstance for that quintessential power lunch. Bring your most esteemed pals or colleagues and feast on classic French onion soup, kale salad with figs and linguica dressing, garlic-roasted golden beets, tuna melts with sliced beefsteak tomatoes and red pepper puree, caramelized Brussels sprouts bruschetta and grilled artichoke hearts. It’s hard to resist filling up on all the starters and salads, but the sandwiches are worth saving room for, namely the Chicago-style hot dog and the crispy flounder sandwich with American cheese and tartare sauce on a fluffy kaiser roll.
SeaWatch on the Ocean: There’s just something about a classic lunch at a classic steakhouse, and in Fort Lauderdale, nothing comes close to SeaWatch on the Ocean. In business since 1974, this timeworn gem has its recipes down pat and its regulars in tow. See what all the fuss is about with a seafood-centric midday meal consisting of jumbo lump crab cakes, smoked salmon tartines, Bahamian conch fritters, crab melt sandwiches, salmon BLTs and the blackened mahi mahi sandwich. Conch chowder and crab tostadas are menu highlights as well.
Fifth Avenue Grill: Up in Delray Beach, this cozy charmer reigns supreme. With beautiful beach views and a motif reminiscent of someone’s home, Fifth Avenue Grill is certainly a fitting place to linger for lunch. And lingering is quite easy when the menu is this fresh and consistent. Case in point: grilled Atlantic salmon gets enlivened by apple vinaigrette, creamy Cuban black bean soup gets served in baked bread bowls, blackened mahi mahi sandwiches get a dollop of tomato-basil-avocado salsa and tenderloin teriyaki arrives on the skewer over a bed of fluffy and fragrant saffron rice.
Houston’s: The casual ambience and relaxed vibes at this Floridian fixture bely the fact that menus here boast some of the most chef-driven skills in any local steakhouse. It’s a trait that’s evident on the lunch menus as well, with kale salads splashed with roasted peanut vinaigrette and housemade veggie burgers defying the stereotypical odds with sweet soy glaze and melted Monterey Jack cheese. Don’t miss the crispy chicken sandwich, buttermilk fried and layered with dressed kale. Or the smoky-sweet rotisserie chicken with herbs, apricot glaze and herbaceous tabbouleh.
Prime Italian: The same owners behind Prime 112 are behind this Italian-leaning Miami Beach eatery, so you know your midday meal is in good hands. Be sure and begin on a high note with a platter of prosciutto di Parma, aged 500 days and sliced to order alongside artisanal cheeses, seasonal fruits and housemade grissini. The pesto-splashed vegetable minestrone is another apt starter, followed by standouts like brick oven-roasted whole cauliflower with whipped feta, pan-seared diver scallops with braised short ribs and truffle mashed potatoes, fried buffalo mozzarella and the Kobe meatball salad.