These restaurants were selected by readers based on food, service, and experience, thus earning the SFGN's award for Best Restaurants of 2020.
Best Restaurant that Converted to Delivery/Pickup (Broward) - The Pub
Also Named Best Take Out
2283 Wilton Dr.
Photo by Carina Mask.
In another new category, two long-time favorites of the community climb to the top.
In an example of just how devastating this pandemic is to local businesses, popular watering hole The Pub pivoted and expanded on its already successful menu of elevated bar food by providing pick-up service. I can tell you I’ve been there a couple of times when I’ve tired of my own cooking and picked up some dinner. The business placed the same in the Best Take Out category.
“The Pub is very proud of its associates, especially during this time of crisis,” said owner Michael Connell. “We’re proud of our reputation as being known as one of the safest clubs to support on the drive.”
While the Pub may have only walked away with two wins they were the runner-up in several categories including Best Restaurant for Social Distancing; Best Burger; Best Bar; and Best Bar for Lesbians. In total they racked up 11 nominations in 10 categories.
Runner Up: Bona Italian Restaurant, which already had a robust pick-up and take-out business have been able to keep afloat by increasing that aspect of the restaurant.
Best Restaurant (Broward) - Rosie's Bar & Grill
Also Named Best Burger & Best Restaurant for Social Distancing
2449 Wilton Dr.
Photo via Facebook.
Rosie’s is the Meryl Streep of restaurants, winning the Best Restaurant (seven times previously) and Best Burger (eight times previously) awards, so it should come as no surprise that it also won a new category, Best Restaurant for Social Distancing.
Most of Rosie's dining is outdoors, so it was an easy conversion, spacing tables farther apart and the staff taking precautions while being gloved and masked. Conveniently placed hand sanitizing stations also helped. It was the first restaurant I went to after months of isolation.
As for the food Rosie’s is more than just the burgers, check out the salads, fish tacos and yummy desserts. And don’t even get me started on brunch, with such classics as chicken and waffles, crab cakes and, of course eggs and omelets served dozens of ways. But if you do want a mouth-watering burger there are plenty of unique ones to choose from like Bacon Bitty Bang Bang and the Ivana Hooker.
Runners Up: The Pub was runner up for the social distancing award, and rightfully so, tables are well-spaced and it’s clear all safety protocols are being observed. Congrats to Bona Italian for placing as runner-up in the “Best Restaurant” category and to The Pub for runner-up status for the “Best Burger.” As they say, “It is an honor just to be nominated.”
Best Restaurant Outside of Wilton Manors - J. Mark’s
1245 N. Federal Hwy
Photo via Facebook.
In this new category, J. Mark’s, a long-time favorite of the community scores the prize as expected. Let’s hope that J. Mark’s can hang on through this pandemic, we look forward to gathering there with friends and family again. While we may not be able to sit at the bar and take advantage of those happy hour specials, we can still enjoy the upscale fare while dining on the expansive patio.
Runner Up: Cafe Vico
Best Restaurant (Miami-Dade) - R House Wynwood
Also Named Best Kept Secret & Best Activity for Tourists
2727 NW 2nd Ave.
Photo via Facebook.
R House is a vibrant anchor of the Wynwood arts district. The restaurant took the top prize this year for Best Restaurant, Best Kept Secret and its drag brunch won for Best Activity for Tourists.
This diverse Miami local favorite is a joyous space filled with music, food, unique local art and a cast of A-List Drag Performers.
Featuring local art, the best DJs in the City, one of the best drag shows in the city and a robust new Latin-inspired menu; this neighborhood hot spot also holds its own in a city packed with great food.
Chef/Owner Rocco Carulli worked with a team of talented chefs from all over Latin America to bring bold flavors made with the freshest natural ingredients to this incredible space.
Behind the Bar, a mixology program has elevated the craft cocktail offerings to meet the newly envisioned menu. R House shifted gears into the new normal reconfiguring the space for social distancing to ensure you can enjoy a great meal and entertainment safely.
This culinary experience takes you on a journey that is as representative of its address as it is the creator behind it.
This low key unpretentious favorite, is a great place to enjoy the outdoor patio after an afternoon of walking through one of Miami’s most vibrant neighborhoods. Whether you’re planning your next birthday celebration with your besties, or looking for a chill spot to post up for happy hour, R House delivers a great time at an affordable price with great service.
The R House Drag Brunch is the stop for every tourist to experience. This all-inclusive Drag experience includes all you can drink and eat with a side of socially-distanced, but nevertheless electrifying drag performances by some of the biggest names in Drag.
Runner-Up: Meanwhile Runner-up for Best Restaurant is Palace Bar and Restaurant, one of the most well-known stops for anyone visiting Miami Beach’s legendary Ocean Drive featuring an iconic drag spectacular that has attracted a global audience and secured its place as a staple of Ocean Drive entertainment for more than three decades. The runner-up in the Best Kept Secret category goes to Hotel Gaythering, an off the beaten path delight for travelers looking for a vintage MIMO inspired hotel that provides travelers with a local perspective and welcoming atmosphere. And lastly runner-up for Best Activity for Tourists is a visit to Haulover Beach, located midway between Miami and Fort Lauderdale. The destination is a world-renowned clothing optional Beach, which has ranked continuously as one of the top ten nude beaches in the world.
Best Restaurant (Key West) - Santiago's Bodega
207 Petronia St.
Photo via Facebook.
For the fourth time in a row, Santiago’s Bodega has won Best Restaurant.
The owner, Jason Dugan, said it was his childhood dream to look for adventure, so he decided to open his own restaurant.
The restaurant is inspired by Ernest Hemingway's “The Old Man and the Sea,” where the main character Santiago links his life's work as a fisherman with his own core values.
They serve a variety of soups, salad, and cold and hot tapas such as Beef Carpaccio and Shrimp and Chorizo.
“Although this is currently in COVID-19 timing, everything was absolutely amazing. Quite frankly, the food was delicious, they exceeded expectations and service was amazing,” a Yelp reviewer wrote.
Runner-Up: El Siboney Restaurant
Click this link here for the winner in Palm Beach County.