Miami Food and Wine Tours
Taste your way around Florida's beachside paradise
Glorious white sand beaches, exhilarating nightlife and everything in between; there’s a reason why Miami is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. In addition to being a magnet for the rich and famous, this city offers something for everyone. The sprawling South Beach is not to be missed with its crystal seas and buzzing atmosphere, architecture fans can take a stroll down Ocean Drive to admire the famous art deco, while the Lincoln Road mall keeps shopaholics entertained for hours. In the spring, Carnival Miami brings with it ten days of beauty pageants, Latin jazz, and cooking competitions. There’s no doubt about it: Miami is a hedonistic mix of glamour, beauty, and art, and entwined with all of this is the opportunity to enjoy some simply incredible food.
As you’d expect from any sleepless metropolis, all types of cuisine can be found in an ever improving culinary scene. But this part of America has a distinctive blend of Latino and Caribbean styles. Mixed in with traditional American fare, the state of Florida has created its own particular style known as Floribbean cuisine. Yes, really. But that’s a relatively new term for the food scene here. The history of the Miami’s cuisine goes back much further.
The Gulf of Mexico on Miami’s east coast provides easy access to amazing seafood, while Florida’s near-Caribbean weather means that exotic fruits can grow by the bucket-load. Many dishes combine these foods with more unusual spices and are pretty lively as a result. Although many cultures have influenced this style, one of the biggest contributions came from the Cubans, who flocked to Florida in the 1950’s while escaping persecution from Castro. Their traditional culinary touches of salsa, spices, and smoked meats have all been incorporated into Floribbean cuisine.
Although you can find pretty much any type of food here if you look hard enough, there are a few gems unique to Miami. One such treat is the ropa vieja empanada. For Spanish speakers, this won’t sound the most appetising, as it translates into something like ‘old clothes pie’. Luckily, it tastes far better than it sounds. Instead of old clothes, it’s made from chicken stuffed into deep-fried pastry dough. Another gem is the Cuban chop chop, a tasty bowl of rice, black beans, mojo-marinated chicken breast and vegetables smothered in a honey mustard sauce. For those with a sweeter tooth, why not try the abuela maria ice cream. Filled with cream cheese, sweet cookies and red guava, this is a local favourite and guaranteed crowd pleaser.
Miami can be a whirlwind of glamour and beauty, but the food scene plays an important role in bringing it all together. With a unique combination of old and new influences, the city has created a cuisine unlike any other in America. Although the beaches will continue to be Miami’s main attraction, tantalising, Latino-inspired dishes are what will keep foodies coming back for more.