If you stay late enough almost anywhere in Miami, you’re bound to encounter bottle service workers and a live DJ. Why not make matters easy and go somewhere you can grab a bite to eat pre-party? In true Miami fashion, many restaurants transform into clubs and cocktail bars at night. From South Beach to Brickell, these spots have both well-rounded menus and an aesthetic that easily flows from evening to after hours.
MAÜ 3252 NE 1st Ave. Miami, FL 33137
This modern Bohemian chic restaurant serves up a long menu of Mediterranean dishes. Wagu Skewers and Gambas Al Ajillo are just a couple options to start with before digging into a main dish like lamb chops, truffle pasta or lobster pasta.
At night, DJs and performers take over to turn the restaurant into a club. While Maü is known for its atmosphere and seafood courses, like any other trendy Miami restaurant, it tends to get busy.
“I went for a promoter dinner,” said University of Miami sophomore Asha Shah. “I brought my friends, and we were excited, but the food didn’t come out for two hours.”
SUSHI FLY CHICKEN 1575 Alton Rd. Miami Beach, FL 33139
This rather new sushi and fried chicken restaurant is another hit by Groot Hospitality (the group that gave us Strawberry Moon and Swan). From bright neon signs to anime wall art to a hidden entrance, this spot makes you feel like you’re in the heart of Tokyo’s underground nightlife scene, which the restaurant/bar/lounge is inspired by, according to its website.
The extensive menu offers everything from Japanese milk bread to duck bao dumplings and udon noodles. If you go to the speakeasy-themed bar, you’ll find cocktails like yuzu margaritas, lychee martinis and other Japanese whiskey-based drinks.
ESOTICO 1600 NE 1st Ave. Miami, FL 33132
At Esotico, you can expect Hawaiian eats and exotic drinks during both the daytime and evening. This tropical themed spot has happy hour deals, dessert, Sunday brunch and a dinner menu including items like ceviche, octopus poke and short ribs.
“The food was fresh, and everything was delicious,” said UM junior Juliette Valle. “The nightclub may be fun, but the integrity of the food must be preserved simply because of how good it was.”
If you’re here for the Insta and alcohol though, don’t worry. Esotico’s sharable “volcano” drinks are served in photogenic glasses with a spritz of dry ice to make sure you get the perfect pic before enjoying the pour. The vibe is more cocktail bar than club, but you won’t feel out of place if you get there late and make a beeline to the bartender.
KOMODO 801 Brickell Ave. Miami, FL 33131
Celebrities flock to this trendy Brickell eatery. It’s the dinner destination Travis Scott chose for his 29th birthday, the afterparty location of Drake’s 2018 tour with Migos and where Priyanka Chopra and Nick Jonas have been spotted celebrating. Guests can enjoy sushi and sake indoors or outdoors, before heading upstairs to the restaurant’s club, Komodo Lounge, only open Wednesday, Friday and Saturday nights.
1-800-LUCKY 143 NW 23rd St. Miami, FL 33127
Looking for something outside? Set up like an Asian marketplace, 1-800-Lucky is Wynwood’s quintessential outdoor food hall featuring dishes from crowd-favorites like Poke OG, Taiyaki NYC and Jeepny. Not only can guests enjoy classic sushi, bubble tea and ceviche options, but they can also take advantage of the full bar and karaoke rooms. However, if you’d rather save the singing to the pros, no worries. 1-800-Lucky hosts live music every night, varying from Latin to pop to rap artists.
words_nicolette bullard. photo_jacob singer-skedzuhn. design_alex trombley.
This article was published in Distraction’s spring 2022 print issue.