From the endless sunny beaches, to the deep-rooted artistic culture, to the iconic architecture, to the incredible skylines, to the beautiful people (seriously how is everyone so beautiful here), it’s pretty hard to really narrow down what Miami is singularly known for. But even with all these seemingly quintessential facets of the city, many would agree that if you could only experience one thing in Miami, it would be the nightlife. Until recently, New York, Chicago and San Francisco were our country’s go-to cocktail capitals. But Miami has since emerged as one of the iconic craft cocktail destinations in the country. Here are some amazing spots you need to hit up while surviving the holidays, straight from the local musicians who frequent them.
The Broken Shaker $$ Recommended by Dénudés
If you’re looking for that laidback vibe of the iconic South Beach, look no further than the award-winning backyard oasis that is The Broken Shaker. Located in the vintage-y Freehand Hostel, their expert (and notoriously cool) mixologists serve up delicious and imaginative cocktails composed of exotic ingredients from all over the world for signature drinks such as “Burning the Devil” (contains roasted pumpkin seeds, egg, and smoked marshmallow garnish) and “Garbage Pail Kids” (contains Grait Grappa, Cassis, Grapefruit, and Cocchi Rosa). Never thought I’d want a drink with the word garbage in it so bad.
The Corner $$ Recommended by Steven A. Clark
Situated in one of the oldest neighborhoods in the city (Park West Downtown), The Corner shares close proximity with the happening media and entertainment district filled with vibrant nightlife, lively culture, an incredible art scene, and noteworthy museums. With a huge selection of interesting beers, delectable cocktails, tasty food, an enticing happy hour, and a welcoming, unpretentious vibe, it’s no wonder The Corner has become a favorite among locals.
Sweet Liberty Drinks & Supply Company $$ Recommended by Jeff McInnis
Located in the up-and-coming Collins Park area, Sweet Liberty finds that perfect balance between sophisticated and simple, and to be frank, just goddamn good. From interesting takes on American classic dishes to delicious world-class cocktails, it’s not that surprising how many awards this place has won (including Playboy’s Best Bars in 2016 and The World’s 50 Best Bars in 2017). They also have drinks called the “Basic Bitch” and the “Big Butter Julep” (if you knew what was in them, you’d want them NOW). Oh, and they also have the self-proclaimed-but-still-probably-true “happiest” of hours containing 75 cent oysters, and it’s only two blocks from the beach. Do I really need to say anything else?
The Bazaar by José Andrés $$$$ Recommended by Gigi Rowe
Come for the mind-bogglingly inventive menu that seems to contain something from half the countries on the planet, stay for the simple yet delicious craft cocktail menu (and then accidentally stay even longer overnight because their brunch menu is tops as well). Created by an award-winning chef (yes, you guessed it, his name is José Andrés), The Bazaar is just one of five award-winning restaurants from the up-and-coming restauranteur. Just be ready to loosen your purse strings a little bit, but hey it’s Miami Beach, what do you expect?
The Local Craft Food & Drink $$ Recommended by Michael Beltran
Well, they aren’t subtle with the name, but they aren’t lying either. The Local Craft Food & Drink is where Miami locals like to get their craft food and drink. They have a great selection of rotating beers on tap, a carefully curated selection of small-batch craft wine and craft spirit cocktails in a trendy gastro pub environment, right in the Coral Gables neighborhood. It’s the kind of place you have to go to five times in a row because they have such an extensive and amazing brunch, lunch, and dinner menu, each item better than the last. I hear their burger is so euphoric, vegans break their diet in order to eat one…