Best Restaurants In Coral Gables

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By: Shayne Benowitz

A night out in Coral Gables can feel like a trip around the world. Known as the City Beautiful for its wide avenues, Spanish revival architecture and lovely landscaped palazzos and parks with central fountains, it’s also home to an international arsenal of restaurants. Take your pick from Italian, French, Mexican and Caribbean fare. Here’s our guide to the best restaurants in Coral Gables.

Caffe Abbracci

Caffe Abbracci is a Coral Gables institution. Opened in 1989 on Aragon Avenue by Italy native Nino Pernetti, dining here can feel like a journey back in time. The intimate, low ceilinged dining room is lit by opulent crystal chandeliers and tables are adorned with white tablecloths. Frequented by regulars and staffed by career waiters, the place has a clubby feel. The menu consists of traditional Italian comfort food with familiar dishes like beef carpaccio, fettuccine bolognese and branzino “Belvedere” in a prosecco-saffron sauce topped with julienned leeks and Campari tomatoes are among the highlights.

Talavera Cocina Mexicana

Inspired by both Mexico City’s markets and fine restaurants, Talavera Cocina serves fresh, authentic Mexican fare on a lovely pedestrian street in Coral Gables. Named for handmade Mexican pottery that dates back to the 16th century, authenticity is at the heart of the restaurant’s ethos. From mole poblano to carne asada, corn masa and chile relleno, there’s a wide variety of favorites to choose from. Pair this with a margarita on the rocks with salt and a seat on the sidewalk and you’re in heaven.

Brasserie Central

For an authentic French brasserie in the heart of the City Beautiful, snag a table at Brasserie Central at the Shops at Merrick Park. The restaurant prides itself in making everything from scratch using classical French techniques, including their all-natural baked goods, like croissants and pain au chocolate. This is where you’ll sate your craving for oysters, foie gras terrine, escargots de Bourgogne, l’oignon soupe gratinee and steak frites. You’ll also enjoy an excellent selection of French wine to pair with your meal.

The Café at Books & Books

You’re in for a charming affair at the café at this legendary independent bookstore. With wrought iron chairs and tables situated in a Spanish-style central courtyard, The Café at Books & Books is the perfect destination for dinner after a book reading or lunch when you’ve finished browsing the shelves. Chef Allen Susser has designed the menu to highlight local, seasonal ingredients in fresh sandwiches, salads and entrees with plenty of vegan options to choose from.

Ortanique on the Mile

Chef Cindy Hutson is largely credited with introducing fine Caribbean fare to Miami when she opened Ortanique on the Mile in 1999. Today, the beloved institution is a go-to for Coral Gables’ locals and visitors. This is where you’ll find fresh salads and ceviches made of hearts of palm, mango, yellow and red peppers, Scotch bonnet, red onion and fresh citrus. You’ll also delight in conch and corn fritters, West Indian curried jumbo lump crab cakes, jerk chicken penne pasta and pan-sauteed grouper. It’s the perfect taste of the islands right here in Miami.

Threefold Café

For a cozy spot to enjoy breakfast, lunch or a cup of coffee made with love, Threefold Café is the best in town. They work with local purveyors like Zak the Baker and Panther Coffee for a local and artisanal dining experience. Whether it’s avocado toast with a poached egg or soft scrambled eggs with goat cheese and fresh herbs, you’re going to have a wholesome meal to get your day started. You can also indulge in fried French toast and walnut and banana bread served with espresso butter. Come lunchtime, there are a variety of sandwiches and salads to choose from. The restaurant closes at 4:30 p.m.

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