Rabbit egg rolls. Tableside fried rice. Japanese arroz con pollo. Secret omakase menus. Meet Miami’s newest and hottest Asian restaurants — all open less than a year — from speakeasy sushi dens to high-end Chinese haunts, and see our picks for what to order at each one.
Chotto Matte: Miami Beach
At this London transplant, don’t miss the Sea Bass Ceviche. “It incorporates the spicy flavors of Nikkei cuisine with super-fresh ingredients, and balances it all out with a sourness designed for the local palate,” corporate executive chef Jordan Sclare said. 1664 Lenox Avenue, Miami Beach; 305-690-0743; chotto-matte.com.
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To get in here — a sushi restaurant inside a taco joint — you need a reservation and a secret code. The omakase menu is super-fresh; sometimes chef Tadashi Shiraishi doesn’t know what he’s serving until hours before dinner. “We make our sushi rice with a blend of vinegars and rice that’s steamed fresh,” he said. “When you enter, the aroma of the rice is the first thing you experience.” 313 Northwest 25th Street, Miami; 786-580-4948; hidenmiami.com.
Novikov: Downtown Miami
Russian chef and restaurateur Arkadiy Novikov brought his wildly popular London restaurant to Miami this summer. The menu is Chinese-Japanese, but with plenty of global influences. The King Crab Honey Truffle douses Alaskan king crab in honey and yuzu and smothers it in truffle butter. “The generous use of truffle butter and honey are a nod to French cuisine,” managing partner Philippe Moullet said. 300 South Biscayne Boulevard, Miami; 305-489-1000; novikovmiami.com.
When master sushi chef Katsuya Uechi opened a new Katsuya in the SLS Lux Brickell this summer, he introduced a few dishes with Miami in mind. Take the Chicken Oyako Kamameshi. Koshihikari rice is mixed with a flavorful chicken broth, shredded chicken and eggs, then finished tableside with chili-lime butter. “This dish was inspired by the melting pot that is Miami,” executive chef Denevin Miranda said. 805 South Miami Avenue, Brickell; 305-455-2982; slshotels.com/lux-brickell/dining.
Pubbelly Sushi: Kendall
When Puerto Rican-born chef and restaurateur José Mendín opened a new outpost of his hit sushi joint in Downtown Dadeland, Kendall diners rejoiced. His Tuna Pizza is a fan favorite. “I wanted to make a Japanese-style pizza; something that’s comforting and delicious, but light at the same time,” he said. “It’s very simple, but everything together tastes amazing.” 8970 Southwest 72nd Place, Kendall; 786-369-5472; pubbellysushi.us.
Azabu: South Beach
Led by chef Masatsugu “Masa” Kubo, NYC’s Michelin-starred Sushi Azabu now has an intimate space at the Marriott Stanton South Beach. Try the King Crab Toban Yakimeshi, an ode to chef’s childhood in Kansai, Japan. “It’s one of those dishes that gets everyone excited and creates conversation,” Masa said. “Once one table orders it, everyone around them wants one because it smells so good.” 161 Ocean Drive, Miami Beach; 786-276-0520; azabuglobal.com.
This modern Chinese gem, located in the former Cake Thai Kitchen in Wynwood, is accented by red lights housed in hanging baskets. Order the Rabbit Shiso Egg Roll. “We start by charring Napa cabbage in the wok, and braise rabbit with tamari, Koji, Shaoxing wine, ginger, garlic, lemongrass and thyme,” executive chef Raymond Li said. “We serve it in egg roll wrappers with ají amarillo-infused oyster sauce.” 180 Northwest 29th Street, Miami; 305-573-5682; palmarmiami.com.
3 Food-Hall Finds to Know
At St. Roch Market in the Design District, head to Itamae for Peruvian-inspired sushi like the Lost in Translation Roll with tuna, salmon, quinoa, mango and ají amarillo.
Wynwood’s 1-800-Lucky has fire-roasted Peking Duck Buns from Lotus + Cleaver that are heavenly.
When Time Out Market opens on Lincoln Road this year, Top Chef winner Jeremy Ford will be doling out Krun-chi Chicken: Korean-style fried chicken with kimchi on a pillowy-soft potato roll.