Great Bagels, Pizza and Urbanism

The New Yorker in me loves a good bagel and slice of pizza. I also love some good urbanism.  Luckily I have found all three in Midtown. Believe it or not, Brooklyn Bagles and Primo Pizza actually import New York City tap water to make their bagels and pizza. The owners believe that the water makes all the difference in the dough-I have to agree with them. Brooklyn Bagels and Primo Pizza are independently owned and the deli and pizza shop are next-door neighbors.  I’m going to go out on a limb and say that Brooklyn Bagels makes the best bagel in Miami and Primo Pizza has the best slice in Miami.

Brooklyn Bagels-Best Bagel in Miami

Primo Pizza-Best Slice of Pizza in Miami

The food at these establishments is great, but so is the urbanism where the stores are located.  Midtown was developed to be a walkable urban environment; thus far it has achieved what it has set out to do.  There is density, the streets are narrow to discourage cars from speeding, and the sidewalks are wide and shaded by trees to encourage walking.  Streets are lined with parallel parking and bollards that act as a protective buffer between cars and pedestrians that makes pedestrians feel safe while walking. Cars were not the main concern when Midtown was designed; pedestrians were the priority.

Raised crosswalks calm traffic and discourage speeding. Bollards act as a buffer between cars and pedestrians.

Narrow streets and parallel parking discourage speeding, calm traffic, and act as a buffer between the street and sidewalk activity. Parallel parking is also necessary for businesses to survive. Brooklyn Bagels and Primo Pizza customers need to have accessible parking in order for these establishments to survive.

Wide sidewalks easily accommodate outdoor seating and allow for pedestrians to walk comfortably. Shade trees provide pedestrians and diners a bit of relief from the sun.

Great urbanism makes for an even better place to enjoy my favorite foods.

Brooklyn Bagels and Primo Pizza are located at 3451 Northeast 1st Avenue

Brickell Restaurant Roundup-New Openings

Brickell will see at least four new restaurants in the neighborhood within the coming months.

Taverna Opa shuttered its doors a few months ago on South Beach and has decided to move across Biscayne Bay and open its first restaurant on the mainland at Mary Brickell Village. For those of you that have never been to Taverna Opa you should give it a try. Be prepared to dance on tables and eat some tasty and reasonably priced greek tapas.

Also, coming to Mary Brickell Village is Brother Jimmy’s BBQ. This will be their first restaurant location in Florida. They currently have six locations in Manhattan and Brother Jimmy’s BBQ just recently opened new restaurants in San Juan and St. Maarten.

Toscana Divino will open on the ground floor of Mary Brickell Village on February 11th. Occupancy at Mary Brickell Village will hover near 100% with the addition of these three new restaurants.

Tikl Raw Bar and Grill is slated to open on the ground floor of 1450 Brickell sometime in March. According the Miami New Times the concept will be a “raw bar and grill, all small plates…based on the Japanese Izakaya pub concept.”

These are all encouraging signs for Brickell. Retail tends to lag behind housing, so as people continue to move into the urban core, we will continue to see a proliferation of new retailers coming into the area. Welcome to the barrio.

PM Buenos Aires Fish and Steak House; Architecturally Interesting, Food Not So Much

The Good:

The sides-We had the mushrooms, asparagus, and the cream spinach-all were excellent.

The deserts- Crème Brulet, Cheesecake and Chocolatismo.

The Bad:

The main courses were expensive ($40) and à la carte. Fish was somewhat bland.  The NY Strip was good, cooked to order, but it wasn’t a $40 piece of meat.

The Ugly:

Service was exceptionally slow.  From the start we had to ask for the menus and then we had to repeatedly beg for the check.