What:BarMeli, 725 NE 79th Street, Miami 33138
Why:I absolutely love and adore my neighborhood hang-out, but keeping it a secret isn’t doing it justice. So, here goes (insert crying emoji here.) Liza, the owner of BarMeli, who by the way is sophisticated, worldly and the best hostess in my hood, says: “It’s the kind of place you go, when you don’t wanna go out.”
The Mediterranean wine bar and tapas-style restaurant has a laid-back attitude mixed with a sweet european charm. Not only is the vino amazing (because Liza searches high and low for the unique and unusual,) its food is amazingly fresh, delicious and healthy. I’m obsessed with several dishes at BarMeli: the whole Mediterranean sardines, the head-on prawns and the grilled octopus, to name three. But it’s the prosciutto-wrapped dates with ricotta that make me weep with happiness. The grilled zucchini salad with feta and mint is a close second.
If you really know me, you know that I’m not a true foodie because of my sensitive stomach, but I know what I like and this small gem is by far one of the best restaurants in Miami and I never leave with a food hang-over.
One more thing: every Thursday night (from 7-9pm) BarMeli has a weekly wine tasting. For $25 you can taste two whites and two reds from the Mediterranean region, paired with yummy tapas. The best part: if you try it and like it, you can buy it, because they sell what they serve. Cheers to that!
Where: BarMeli is tucked away in a small shopping strip on 79th Street. In the last few years, the once business: abandoned road is thriving with all sorts of new shops and restaurants. There’s no valet, but there is a small parking lot right in front of the eatery that’s easy to access. No matter what part of the city you live in, this place is worth the drive, because once inside, your worries will be left behind.
When:Opens at 5pm Tuesday through Saturday
Editor: Matthew Auerbach
Photo: t4two photography
Producer: Jessie Rosario
Writer: Shireen Sandoval
“Wine is bottled poetry.” Robert Louis Stevenson