Where to dine with your South American suegros

The restaurants our in-laws approved & you'll enjoy them too

In collaboration with Red For Thought, a local Miami super mom, wife, and trusted source for where you should dine with your in-laws.

We’re going to make a complete generalization but go with it for a few. It will work well for this roundup…Living in Miami you’re either South American or you know one very well. In this scenario, you married one.

It’s all fun and games until your South American (or Latin) suegros want to go out to dinner. And guess who immediately becomes their go-to for all things food-related? You’ll hear them on the phone saying, “We have no idea where we’re going—you choose, it’s up to you!” and your state of panic will begin.

Now you scramble. You’re freaking out, you’re sweating, and hyperventilating is now second nature to you. You need to find the perfect place for dinner. This place needs to show your sophistication, your a.m.a.z.i.n.g palate. It can’t be too stuffy, though, or you may come off as a snob.

Together, we’ve created a list of restaurants that will W O W your in-laws and get them thinking, “damn, they married a good one.” Soon, the “it’s up to you” no longer becomes a knot in your throat. It’s more like a warm hug embracing your amazing taste. The in-laws will keep returning for more, which may suck, but at least you’re on their good side. Right?

Oh and one more thing, this list also includes where Red For Thought would bring her kids and where she wouldn’t. Just in case your in-laws want to make a plan with the whole family.


Neighborhood: Coconut Grove
Address:3540 Main Hwy
Cuisine: Italian, seafood

What type of suegros would you bring here: For the suegra aka mother-in-law you’re trying to impress without having her know you’re trying that hard.

For what occasion: This is perfect for a casual night out. It’s easy and unpretentious, but the food wows.

Recommended dishes: All their starters are amazing, but the trout crudo, hamachi crudo, and scallops are the perfect intros to any meal. Am I partial to Caesar salad? Yes—so order one here to try it and add it to your list of Miami Caesar salads. I have a friend with this list and this one is on it!

Kid-friendly: I wouldn’t take MY kids to Nave but this one could go both ways. My kids are animals.


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Neighborhood: South Beach
Address11 Washington Ave
CuisineSeafood, American

What type of suegros would you bring here: This is the place you bring the suegros when you want to prove to them that having their perfect child move to ANOTHER COUNTRY for the “love of their life” was actually worth it.

For what occasion: Do you need an occasion for the best and most quintessential meal in Miami? Me thinks not. But if you’re looking for a reason to come, just know this place is special. You get a bib and everything. It’s old school, classic vibe always hits the spot. From their French terracotta floors to their bread basket and red and black vests, the food and the servers always deliver.

Recommended dishes: Stone Crabs (obviously) and the not-so-obvious Fried Chicken. It’s one of the absolute best in Miami and a local best-kept secret. Don’t skip on the sides either. Hash browns and Grilled Tomatoes are optional but very much encouraged.

Kid-friendly: HELL YEAH I’d bring my kids here. Especially for lunch on the weekends. The tables are pretty bare and everyone’s always in a good mood. No tantrum can disrupt someone’s happiness as they bite into a claw. Trust me.


Neighborhood: Design District
Address: 4312 NE 2nd Ave
Cuisine: Mediterranean

What type of suegros would you bring here: The chill and adventurous type that love a good ambiance. This place is mainly outdoors and very relaxed so don’t bring uptight people here because they won’t fit in.

For what occasion: Perfect for a weekend lunch or an early dinner where the food is simple and fresh. Where you want to catch up and seem like you know what’s in and hip, and not like you’re a ball of anxiety taking CBD oil just to get through breakfast.

Recommended dishes: Roasted Cauliflower, the Greek or Turkish sampler (viejos love options and this one is yum), the Grilled Octopus and Prawns! The Manti Dumplings, Chicken Kebab and Mediterranean Sea Bass end up kicking the meal into high gear.

Kid-friendly: It’s chill enough but not a huge restaurant, so if you want space for your double stroller and want to play your kid’s iPad with volume without pissing someone off, go somewhere else.


Neighborhood: Allapattah
Address: 1100 NW 23rd St
Cuisine: Basque

What type of suegros would you bring here: The type of suegros who pretend to be happy they’re visiting but keep bringing up that European vacation they weren’t able to go on. “Selfishly” you planned a special event during the “only” available days they could go to Europe.

For what occasion: This is the perfect place to rub in their face that YES they could be in Spain, but you made it a point to bring Spain to them. Was it difficult? Not really, but you’re going to milk their satisfaction until they go back home.

When arriving at LEKU, everyone seems kind of worried. “Are we on the wrong street? Are you sure this place is good?”And then bam—you enter and everything changes. Your mood and the fact that you “ruined” their vacation is no longer a concern to your in-laws. Because the vibe at LEKU is incredible and so is the food.

Recommended dishes: Croquetas are a must, as well as the Tartare de Ibérico. I can’t express how utterly amazing this dish is. Gambas al Ajillo and the Tortilla Española Trufada are always a hit so go with those. If you’re looking to splurge, order a Chuletón de Vaca. Big enough to share and it’s so succulent.

Kid-friendly: Ummm no. In no capacity. Go alone and get a sitter. It’s worth it.


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Neighborhood: Coconut Grove
Address: 3480 Main Hwy
Cuisine: Modern Lebanese

What type of suegros would you bring here: Fun suegros. The ones who don’t want the party to end, so you start at Amal and then take the elevator to the rooftop and get drinks at Level 6. These are the suegros who love you and want to celebrate being in your presence.

For what occasion: You’re going here for the decor, the food, and the location. They have a great selection of cocktails and easy access to the prettiest rooftop bar in the grove. Your suegros will be calling their friends on FaceTime and rubbing in their faces how exquisite your taste is.

Recommended dishes: Hummus, Crispy Eggplant & Zucchini, Grape Leaves, and Marinated Olives are perfect to start off. Get those on the table while you sip your cocktails and decide what main courses you want. Pistachio Kebabs, Chicken Wings, Roasted Cauliflower, and Kibbeh are next on your list. They’re easy, their classics and they’re good. You can thank me later.

Kid-friendly: I would take them only during the day and only if I didn’t have an option.


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Neighborhood: Coral Gables
Address2530 Ponce de Leon
Cuisine: Italian, pasta

What type of suegros would you bring here: If yours are classic and old school, this is a place for them. A block away from the historic Miracle Mile, this beautiful, and semi-new Italian restaurant is the best of both worlds. It’s elegant without being over the top, has delicious food without being incredibly expensive, and you’re close enough to home that if you have dinner at eight you won’t be home by 1 AM.

For what occasion: This is the place that I would take my in-laws if I wanted to show them that living in Miami isn’t just a place where people come for Spring Break. Portosole is cozy and warm but bright at the same time. I love that they have the windows and doors open at the entrance a lot of the time. They always have good specials, and the staff is really nice.

Recommended dishes: Always ask for the specials of the day. Their soups of the day and tartare of the day are always winners! We also love the Burrata and Vittelo Tonnato. You can’t go wrong with any pasta, the Dover Sole, or the Filetto di Manzo.

Kid-friendly: I actually do like this place for children during the day! There are lots of options for them to eat.


Neighborhood: Coconut Grove
Address: 3111 Grand Ave
Cuisine: Italian

What type of suegros would you bring here: I would bring someone who knows good food. This place is a hole in the wall on Grand Avenue, but the food is spectacular. If you wanna wow them in a way that’s a surprise, this is your place.

For what occasion: You can come here for a birthday, a celebration, or a quick bite. You’ll win either way. I like that the owner is always there, speaking Italian to you, even though you’re not Italian. I love that the specials board is never the same, and if you really want something, and they don’t have it, they try to make it for you anyway.

Recommended dishes: The Cacio e Pepe is outstanding here. They mix it in a cheese wheel tableside and it’s worth every calorie you will inhale. Whatever seafood specials, they have, get them! Their Octopus and Lobster Ravioli are also very good.

Kid-friendly: Yes! My children absolutely love this place and they have a very small but delicious children’s menu.


Neighborhood: Wynwood
Address: 252 NW 25th St
Cuisine: Japanese

What type of suegros would you bring here: This is the place to bring pretentious in-laws, who think that they have traveled the world and had sushi in Japan.

For what occasion: Leave this restaurant for your last dinner during their visit if they don’t live in Miami! Make sure they leave with a bang, telling everyone how absolutely amazing your recommendation for sushi was. “It’s like we were really in Japan” Yes, that’s exactly what they’ll tell their friends.  It is an all-around slam dunk.

Recommended dishes:  This is gonna sound a little annoying, but my best recommendation is to look at your server and say bring me whatever is freshest and whatever you think, I’m gonna like the most. Say a Hail Mary and wait to be impressed.

Kid-friendly: Nope. Sorry.


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Neighborhood: Coral Gables
Address: 2299 Ponce de Leon
Cuisine: Mexican

What type of suegros would you bring here: This is a great place for in-laws, who want a shopping break and if they’re in Coral Gables. You don’t have a lot of time because everyone “has” to go to Dadeland or to Costco, but we have to eat at some time, right?

For what occasion: a casual lunch or a casual dinner. No fuss, no muss. Their motto is “barriga llena, corazón contento” so this is the perfect place for them. The dishes at Talavera are caseritos. It is consistently good, and it’s a great neighborhood spot.

Recommended dishes: Queso Fundido (with chorizó pls or don’t talk to me) and Guac. Enchiladas Suizas are delish as well as their Huaraches if you want to eat “light”.

Kid-friendly: Yes, absolutely! Look like a good spouse and book this restaurant so that your in-laws can have quality time with your little ones. You don’t want them to think you always leave your child alone with the Nanny so that you can go out to eat, do you? This is a perfect place to prove that your child goes out and knows how to behave in a restaurant


Neighborhood: Coral Gables
Address: 259 Giralda Ave
Cuisine: Mediterranean

What type of suegros would you bring here: The obsessive-compulsive type. They’re gonna come here once and want to come every single time there in Miami, so get ready.

For what occasion: This is the place I take my suegros when I know they want to eat well. They don’t want to think, they just want a nice dinner.

Recommended dishes: Their tasting menus are divine! They are offered 7 days a week.

Kid-friendly: I don’t wanna sound like I don’t like going out with my children, but eating out is expensive now and I don’t want to spend money and be in a bad mood. Does that make sense? If your child is a picky eater, I’d skip this one.


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