So continuing from last week's post about my time in Miami Beach, onto the food. As I mentioned before, we stayed in North Beach rather than the more popular and touristy South Beach because of the location of the conference center. This meant block after block of authentic Latin American food places, such as Brazilian and Argentinian steakhouses and bakeries. The enticing layout of sweets above is from Buenos Aires Bakery, which was on the way to our conference hotel. I didn't actually get to sample any of those cakes above, or the flan pictured below for that matter, but what I did have was a quite good ham and cheese croissant.
I know what you're thinking: "You ordered a savory pastry from such a shop, with desserts that looked like that?" I ordered something akin to an Italian "cornetto con crema", or croissant stuffed with pastry cream, along with my ham and cheese. Unfortunately, when it came time for dessert, I realized they had forgotten to give me mine. So all in all, I recommend the place, but don't forget to double check the contents of your paper bag before you leave.
The delectable spread of random meats above is from Campo Argentino, which you might seen billed as "New Campo Argentino" ever since the change in management. My first experience with an Argentinian steakhouse, and we went all out--for lunch of all meals--with a bottle of red wine and the "parrillada mixta", or mixed grill platter. It came with skirt steak, short ribs, sweetbreads, chorizo, chicken breast, and blood sausage.
I had heard stories about both sweetbreads and blood sausage, but both were not as unappetizing as I had anticipated. Especially the blood sausage, which my sister had long ago described to me as "like eating congealed, gelatinous bloody jello". Its texture reminded me more of, say, liver than any type of jelly (to my relief). One of my dining companions remarked that it reminded him of "soondae", which now makes sense considering it can be categorized also as a type of blood sausage.
Lastly, one of Miami's delicacies: the stone crab. We went to the most well-known crab place in Miami Beach, Joe's Stone Crab, and despite the high price tag and aggressive salesmen--I mean waiters--it did not disappoint. Look at the size of those claws! Their thick, ceramic-like shells came pre-cracked for convenience, and the amount of meat in each one makes them worth the price. Even the side dishes were well-made, and the key lime pie (on the house for our party) was heavenly. Highly recommended.