UPDATE: Voting for Day 5 is now closed. Check MiamiHerald.com/restaurants Tuesday at 8 a.m. to vote in the next round.
Once there were 64. Now only 32 restaurants remain standing in our Miami Herald Munch Madness.
You voted for your favorite Miami restaurants to help cut the field in half. Now, these restaurants are vying for the honor of reaching the Sweet Sixteen.
Come back to MiamiHerald.com/restaurants each day, vote for your favorite, and help them move through the bracket until you crown the Munch Madness champion on April 4.
Today, our Casual Dining Region returns to action. (That’s the top left quadrant if you downloaded the bracket.) Voting closes Monday, March 20 at 8 p.m.
(1) Beaker and Gray vs. (8) Yardbird
Chef Brian Nasajon turned the year-old Diaper Dandy Beaker and Gray into a go-to Wynwood spot for delicious small bites, from savory chorizo “churros” to fresh cobia filleted raw over a light and creamy butter of roasted cashew, cucumber juice, vinegar and salt, blended and drizzled. Yardbird started the upscale Southern food trend in Miami and keeps it rolling with delectable dishes like pork belly and chicken biscuits with pickled red onions worth lining up for.
(12) Rinconcito Mexicano vs. (4) Finka
Rinconcito Mexicano is as authentic as Mexican cuisine gets in Miami, including the weekend-only pozole soup and cochinita pibil roast. There’s nothing quite like Finka anywhere in the western suburbs, where the granddaughter of the Islas Canarias founders, Elieen Andrade, experiments with Peruvian, Cuban and pan-Asian cuisine to create dishes that seem both familiar and inspired.
(11) Pincho Factory vs. (14) Versailles
Pincho Factory took off in Miami with amazing burgers on pillowy potato bread, sweet potato tater tots with apple butter and a Cartel hot dog with shaved potato sticks that might be Miami’s best. Versailles is the heart of classic Miami, a staple that recreates classic Cuban dishes and serves as nerve center for the Cuban diaspora during major events that affect the island.
(7) Ariete vs. (2) Pubbelly
Eating at Ariete is an adventure, where chef Michael Beltran (a Michael Schwartz and Norman Van Aken disciple), creates progressive American fare (picture grilled quail with green nettles and venison with calabaza) that will leave you smacking your lips. Pubbelly breathed life into Sunset Harbour by letting Jose Mendin explore his creativity with Asian-inspired small plates with rich flavors, from their dates with chorizo, short rib dumplings and soft shell crab benedict, which helped make him a five-time James Beard award-nominated chef.