By: Maxi Bonito
5 Minute Read
Miami is known for its beautiful weather, stunning beaches, swaying palm trees, and nightlife that you can’t find anywhere else. It’s idyllic. However, living in this vacation destination, constantly surrounded by rented Ferraris and Instagram “models,” can give a false impression of reality and really take a toll on your self-esteem.
You may feel like you need to look like a supermodel, have muscles like The Rock, or go to LIV on Sunday just to fit in. In honor of World Mental Health Day, put your phone away and step outside of your normal routine. Here are our 5 favorite spots in Miami to recollect your positive thoughts:
1. Rickenbacker Causeway Bridge
You’ve probably been over the Rickenbacker Causeway Bridge, but have you ever been under it? This secret spot is easy to miss, but totally worth the U-turn. It’s a little ramp by the first beach to the right as you enter the Key. There’s a little area where you can park and a seawall with an area to fish or have a picnic while taking in the most breathtaking Brickell views in Miami! The views from this spot are jaw-dropping whether you visit during the day, dusk or night!
Image: @lars7457 via instagram
2. Brickell Key
Brickell Key is across a short bridge from Brickell. Here you can find the best of both worlds: the beautiful views of Brickell without the city noise. The island is in the shape of a triangle with a ~1 mile jogging trail around it. It’s the perfect spot to exercise, bring your young kids in their strollers, or take your dog for a walk. There are plenty of benches to sit and take in the views. There’s also a self-guided tour where you can learn facts about the island’s vegetation, wildlife, and different places around Key Biscayne. Say hi to the community cat who lives to the right of the island’s entrance, in front of the Mandarin Oriental.
Image: @mo_miami via Instagram
3. Exhale Spa
Amid the craziness of the city, Exhale Spa exists peacefully inside the Epic Hotel. A spa day certainly does come with a higher price tag than a trip to the park, but sometimes it’s exactly what you need. Exhale Spa offers a number of spa and beauty services as well as exercise classes. They also pride themselves on being male-friendly. If you want to make your spa day last a few weeks, stop by their gift shop in the front to pick up their amazing products.
4. David T. Kennedy Park (Coconut Grove)
David T. Kennedy Park is right on the water in Coconut Grove. Take a relaxing stroll or get your heart pumping with stunning Bay views. This park has a nice synthetic jogging trail that is soft on the joints, and outdoor workout equipment spread around the park.
MUST-SEE LOCAL SECRET: AC’s Icees Truck operates out of the parking lot. The owner has been there forever and he is Miami Native’s best kept secret. He sells refreshing icees that will cool you down after toughing the Miami heat.
Image: @sunsets_miami via Instagram
5. Matheson Hammock Park
Hidden down the windy roads of Coconut Grove and through Pinecrest is Matheson Hammock Park. It is a beautiful, quiet beach surrounded by a ring of palm trees. It’s great for families because the man-made atoll pool is not too large. It’s even better for watching sunsets! After the sunset, try the "island casual" seafood restaurant on the sand, Red Fish Grill. Most importantly, don’t forget to bring a hammock to tie between two trees like Maxi did!
Remember, it's okay for you to take a break from your "Miami lifestyle" and focus on your mental health. YOU deserve it!
Share this article with someone who needs to take a break!
Obra Kitchen Table invited us to try their new dinner menu, and we're spilling all the delicious details...
10/8/19 - 8 minute read
By: Maxi Bonito
In with the new...
Just as our Miami Spice withdrawals were setting in, Obra Kitchen Table came to the rescue and invited us to come sample their new dinner menu! Obra is a spectacular Latin American restaurant located on Brickell Bay that we strongly urge everyone to visit for the food, views, and good vibes. Hungry diners can try their menu items a-la-carte or sample a little bit of everything in their four- or six-course tasting menu.
Both Obra’s logo and interior use a bright orange and light blue that generates a comfortable, bright and airy environment. The restaurant’s interior looks like a classy but laid-back open-concept kitchen, where guests can sit at the “kitchen counter” to watch the chef cook or choose a normal table inside or outside. We opted to sit outside for the city and water views.
We took our time eating and taking in the lovely atmosphere. Throughout the duration of our time we encountered many waitresses and line cooks. Obra employs some of the most “smiley” and friendly wait staff. Each of them went out of their way to explain the unique details about each dish and made sure that we were enjoying our experience.
Drinks & Appetizers
As soon as we sat down, a waitress brought us a basket of gigantic fried pork puff skin seasoned with lemon zest, orange zest, and truffle oil. They were delicious and the biggest ones we’ve ever encountered. Next, we immediately received a plate with two large pieces of bread and a dollop of honey butter.
Alicia ordered the Tigre On Fire cocktail which tasted like a sweet & tangy bloody mary. I ordered the Parchita Bubble which was sweet due to the passion fruit, yet dry from the Prosecco.
The Chef's Selections
The wait staff began to bring us some of their favorite dishes. First, was the Hamachi Tiradito + Mango and Mezcal Leche de Tigre & Crispy Arepa. This dish was, by far, Alicia’s favorite because of the Leche de Tigre (or, milk of the tiger) sauce, the same sauce used in her cocktail. Leche de Tigre is traditionally made with citrus juice and peppers, and this one had the sweet taste of a honeysuckle. We had to hold back from licking the plate.
Next, they brought us the Grilled Baby Octopus + Ajillo Sunchokes. If you’re an octopus fan, this dish is a must! Sunchokes are a species of sunflower native to North America. They are also known as Jerusalem artichokes. They looked like potatoes but tasted like a combination of potatoes and artichoke hearts. This dish came with mojitos. However, it wasn’t the drink. Mojitos are vegetables that are cut up very tiny, similar to pico de gallo.
The Two Mojitos and One Roasted Snapper was so beautiful that our jaws dropped! Despite the name, the dish looked like it came with two fish. However, it was just sliced open in two with plenty of meat on each side. One was covered in a special sofrito rojo sauce with crispy quinoa while the other one was covered in a green chichito pepper sauce. Both were delicious, but Alicia and I agreed that we preferred the green sauce. The fish came were four soft corn tortillas to make tacos.
Lastly, my favorite dish, was the 8 oz. Beef Tenderloin + Burrata + Green Asparagus. I was stuffed by this point, but forced myself to make room to enjoy this incredible dish. The beef was cooked medium-rare with a very large ball of burrata on top. When we cut into it, the burrata oozed all over. The pairing of the tasty meat and creamy burrata sent me to Cloud 9.
As if we had any more room for food, our lovely waitress brought us dessert. We received a pastry filled with passion fruit cream and a side of coconut ice cream in a bed of coconut flakes. It was almost too good! The pastry was super soft and tasted like a cinnamon bun. The coconut ice cream was fresh and tasted like a real coconut.
I truly cannot wait to go back to Obra Kitchen Table. The overall experience was easily an 11/10. The employees were lovely, the food was fresh, unique, and delicious, and the atmosphere was cheery and fun. I hope to see more Brickell residents trying this gem!